The size of the family of Imam Sadiq (PBUH) and his living expenses had increased. Therefore, the Imam (PBUH) decided to start a trading business in order to increase his income to balance the expenditure.
He gathered one thousand gold coins as capital and said to one of his servants named Musadif, “Take these one thousand gold coins and be prepared to travel to Egypt for trading”.
Musadif spent that money to buy what was usually carried to Egypt, and then he joined a caravan of traders who had bought the same property as he had.
When they approached Egypt, they came across another group of traders who had just left Egypt. They asked about their business, and within their conversations, Musadif and his friends realized that the property they were carrying had become rare. Therefore, they were excited over their luck. The property they were carrying was extremely essential to the people. The people had to buy it for whatever price it was available at.
The traders became so happy about this news, and they made a promise among themselves not to sell their properties except with a profit margin of more than 100%.
They entered Egypt and found the situation exactly the same as they were informed. Based on their promise, they did not sell their properties for less than twice as much as what they had bought them.
Musadif returned to Medina with one thousand gold coins of net profit. Excited and happy, he went to Imam Sadiq (PBUH) and offered him two pouches of money, each of which contained one thousand gold coins.
Imam Sadiq (PBUH) asked him, “What are these?” Musadif replied, “One of the pouches is what you gave ma as capital, and the other, which is equal to the capital, is the net profit I gained”.
Imam Sadiq (PBUH) said, “That is a lot of profit. Tell me how you made so much profit?”
Musadif replied, “We were informed just before reaching Egypt that the property we were carrying had become rare. So we made a promise not to sell our properties unless with a minimum of 100% profit margin”.
Imam Sadiq (PBUH) said, “Sanctified is Allah! What have you done? You made a promise to manipulate the market? You promised not to sell your properties for less than twice its original price? No! I do not want such a profit.”
Then, Imam Sadiq (PBUH) took one of the pouches and said,” This is my money”, and he did not touch the other one.
Then, he said,” O Musadif! Moving a sword (fighting and putting your life in danger) is easier than gaining legitimate income”.
(The above is a selection taken from “Dastan e Rastan” (Story of the Righteous), by the martyred scholar, Murtada Mutahhari)
The Roshd Website offers condolences to all Muslims, especially you dear friend, upon 25th of Shawwal, the anniversary of the martyrdom of the heir of Prophets and the leader of the righteous, Imam Ja’far ibn Muhammad al-Sadiq (PBUH).