Visiting the sick person which is emphasized in the teachings of the Ahlulbait (PBUT) helps to bring calm for the sick and lessen his suffering, and this is achieved through showing affection, presenting with gifts and etc.

A follower of Imam Sadiq (PBUH) narrates: “a friend of Imam got sick and we went to visit him. On the way we met with Imam Sadiq (PBUH). Imam asked us “where are you going?”

We answered we are going to visit the man.

Imam (PBUH) said “wait.” We stopped, then he said: “do any of you have with yourself some apple or quince or citron, or some perfume or some oud for incense?”

We replied: “we don’t have with ourselves any of these.”

Imam Sadiq (PBUH) said: “don’t you know that the sick relaxes when he is gifted?”

He also stressed that visiting the sick should be short and he used to say: “visiting the sick should take no more than a milking of a camel.”

His other advice was to not to stare at the sick for it would make him aggrieve.

The great Imam (PBUH) as well advised to ask the sick to pray for us during the visit, for his pray is like the pray of the angels.

Yes, a seemingly unimportant custom moves the human toward growth and will help to deepen the social ties between people.

 (Selection from Mafatih al-Hayat by Ayatullah Jawadi Amuli with minor changes)

Footnotes:

1- Al-Kafi, volume 3, page 118.

2- The clinic is the equivalent of a camel hiccuping or milking a camel (Al-Kafi, volume 3, page 118).

3- Do not look at the people of calamity, for that makes them sad (Mishkat al-Anwar, page 28).

4- If one of you comes to see his brother, returning to him, let him ask him to pray for him, for his supplication is like the supplication of the angels (Al-Kafi, vol. 3, page 117).

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