Fodhail, Ben-aiadh, Abou Ali

Fodhail, Ben-Aiadh, Abou Ali a Mohammedan saint and ascetic, was born at Abiwerd (Khorassan) or at Samarcand. He commenced by being a thief on the highway, then he studied the works of Coufa, and settled at Mecca, where he died in the year 187 of the hegira (A.D. 803). He is the reputed author of a large number of sentences and replies, some of which may be mentioned here: "God," said he, "multiplies the afflictions of those whom he loves, and the worldly prosperity of those whom he hates;" "Actions of piety which are performed through ostentation are the actions of pagans;" "It is better to be affectionate to one's equals and to try to be agreeable to them, than to spend the night in prayer and the day in abstinences." Fodhail had one day refused the presents of the caliph, Haroun al-Raschid; his companions remarked to him that he ought to have accepted these gifts in order to distribute them among the poor; but he answered, "If this money had been legally acquired, it would have been legal to accept it." Fodhail laughed but once after his conversion, and that was when he heard of the death of his son, "for," said he, "what pleases God, pleases me also." See Hoefer, Nouv. Bing. Generale, s.v.

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