A believer with bad character is like a thorn troubling people whilst a believer with good character is like a rose; he gives fragrance to all those around him. If you look at him from far, he reminds you of Islam. When you speak to him, he speaks of deen and when you sit in his company, you benefit from his piety.
The alchemy of scientists is to turn dust into gold, the alchemy of mashaaikh is to turn thorns into roses. In nurseries we plant seeds and roses grow but this is no kamaal. It is the system of Allah.
In a khanqah thorns come (meaning people with bad character, in need of islaah/spiritual reformation). If you plant a thorn in the ground nothing grows. But a thorn that stays in a khanqah with ikhlaas grows into a rose. When he leaves people will enquire that which maulana is this? But he is not a maulana. He is just a thorn that became a rose.
The same children of his who went into hiding the minute he would enter home, fearing his wrath, now rush to the door to embrace him. The same wife of his who feared his return, now, she looks forward to seeing him because now he is a rose, everyone likes roses. Who would want a thorn? Nobody. But roses? Everyone likes roses.
— Hazrat Ml. Dawood Seedat حفظه الله
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