IN ARABIC, THE HOLY PROPHET’S SANDAL IS KNOWN AS NA’AL. THE NA’LAYN ARE THE BLESSED SANDALS WORN BY BLESSED MESSENGER, MUHAMMAD
“One who smells the dust of the grave of the Most Beloved Messenger of Allah would not need to smell any other perfume in his life.”
In Arabic, the Holy Prophet’s sandal is known a Na’al. The Na’layn are the blessed sandals of the Messenger which were used by him during his life. Here, we show some of the benefits one can be blessed with by keeping and honouring ourselves with a copy of the sacred Na’layn – not the actual or original Blessed sandal of our Messenger but a cut-out paper copy or something similar.
Because this serves as a symbol for Messenger’s sandals which holds such value and is revered, due to it being worn on the Blessed Feet of the Greatest of all Creation . An original pair of the Messenger’s sandals have been kept and safeguarded in the famous Topkapi Palace Museum in Turkey. There are numerous blessings to be obtained by keeping the Na’layn, and to be kept in a purse for blessing or in a frame on the wall is very popular.
The Prophet’s daughter once went to the resting place of her Beloved Father and took a handful of dust which she put to her eyes, saying: “One who smells the dust of the grave of the Most Beloved Messenger of Allah would not need to smell any other perfume in his life. Such calamities have befallen me, that if they had descended upon days they would have fallen into nights.” It is mentioned in Sahih Bukhari that Ali was cured of his eye ailment when the Messenger’s blessed mubarak saliva was applied to Ali’s eye. It is also narrated that the noble Bilal used to rub his face on the grave of the Beloved Prophet . The practice of honouring relics (tabarruk) was common among the Companions of Messenger .
The noble Companions gave the utmost respect to the relics of Messenger , and used to seek blessings from the reminders they had left of Messenger during his lifetime.
Regarding the Blessed Na’layn, there is not a civilisation that has loved and celebrated its leader the way that Islamic civilization loves and celebrates its Prophet, the mercy to mankind Muhammad Mustafa .
Love is the strongest of all human attachments, and is the greatest thing that distinguishes the relationship of Muslims with their Prophet , who said, “None of you truly believes until I am more beloved to him than his very self, wealth, and all people.”
Motivated by this love, as well as by an understanding of the immense importance of the personal example of Messenger , the Muslim community has recorded and preserved his entire life in the most exacting detail. The Islamic scholars do not limit their attention to the moral and legal example of the Messenger alone. Rather, they also focus on his daily life, like his habits of eating, drinking and sleeping, as well as other matters that do not have immediate legal implications. From that time until this present day, Muslims have sought to imitate the example of their Beloved in all its detail, unless they were of particular matters that Allah Most High chose only for Messenger himself. The Prophet’s external, physical appearance was also among the matters that Muslims pay great attention to, as were his habits of dress. Amongst the matters of external appearance, the Prophet’s noble sandals receive particular attention, perhaps because of what his followers feel; utmost love and humility for their Beloved Prophet , such that they see themselves not even worthy of the dust under his Blessed Feet.
THE COMPANIONS AND THE NOBLE SANDALS
The attention given to the noble sandals is not an innovated matter. Rather, the first generations, from the Companions of Messenger , were the first to give them attention and importance, such that some of them were known to have distinguished themselves with serving the Noble Sandals.
It has been reported by Ibn Saad that Anas bin Malik was the keeper of the sandals of Messenger and Imam al-Salihi reported in his work, Subul al-Huda wa’l Rashad (8:318) that Abd Allah ibn Masud used to get up as soon as Messenger sat down, and would take off the Beloved Messenger’s sandals, and place them under his arms. Then, when the Messenger would get up, he would put them on his Blessed Feet. Many other narrations have been transmitted from the Companions giving exact descriptions of the noble sandals of Messenger .
THE STATUS OF THE DEPICTION OF THE NOBLE SANDALS, AND THEIR BLESSINGS
The depiction of the Na’layn has had a special place in the hearts of Muslims since it points to one of the needs of their tremendous Prophet , and since it inspires in them the utmost humility towards his High rank. Because of this, they took care to record this depiction, and to draw it, and they sometimes even placed it under their turbans, to feel their complete subservience to the tremendousness of this Most Noble Messenger . They also hung this depiction in their houses, seeking blessing from it. Writers and poets wrote eloquently in praise of the Noble Sandals, and in describing the feelings of ecstatic love for that King who wore them. Imam Abu al-Abbas gathered a significant amount of these writings in his aforementioned work, as well as in his treatise Azhar al-Riyad.