Junaid Baghdadi was a famous wrestler
Junaid Baghdadi was a wrestler by profession. He would wrestle to earn a living. The people of Baghdad held a wrestling contest quite often. The leader of Baghdad would call out the wrestler name who had to enter a contest while a volunteer contestant from the public would rise to wrestle.
An old man came to fight with him
Once the leader announced the name of Junaid Baghdadi and asked for a volunteer from the public. On this, an old man rose and said that he wanted to wrestle with Junaid Baghdadi. The people were shocked. The man was old and weak, how could he even think of competing with the young and strong Junaid Baghdadi?
The man was not even able to stand up properly: his whole body would shake while he walks and his neck would quiver as he talked. Yet, the 65 old man put forth himself for the contest. The leader was helpless as the rules said that anyone who would volunteer for the wrestling would be allowed to wrestle.
When the time approached, Junaid entered the ring and was astonished to see an old, wrecked and fragile man as an opponent. The people, king, and Junaid all were in a shock. Was this a joke? Does the man really think he is capable of wrestling whilst he can’t stand properly?
The old man said something to Junaid Baghdadi
However, while both were in the ring, the old man asked Junaid to have a talk. The old man then whispered that he is a descendant of the Prophet Muhammad S.A.W i.e. he is a Sayyid. He has run out of money, has a loan to repay and kids back at home are starving. He then asked Junaid that if he would be able to put down his honor, pride, and name for the sake of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him)?
Only if Junaid loses this contest for the sake of Prophet Muhammad S.A.W, the old man would be able to win the prize money. The prize money would help him repay loans and have some money to get food for children for a year.
But this task requires Junaid to sacrifice his pride: of course, people will talk that look Junaid loss a contest to an old man. Yet this sacrifice will help him reap rewards in the hereafter as he would help the children of Prophet Muhammad S.A.W.
Junaid grabbed the opportunity
This was an excellent opportunity for Junaid to earn great rewards. He did not hesitate and readily thought of losing the match and his honor just for the sake of Holy Prophet PBUH. However, he wanted to make sure that his defeat looked natural and no one would question it.
Therefore, when the contest started, he performed some false actions making sure that the old man wasn’t really hurt. Junaid would also act that the weak hands of the old man were strong enough to knock him down. By the end of the wrestling, Junaid fell, and the old man stood on his chest claiming his victory.
Junaid saw Prophet Muhammad S.A.W in the dream
Junaid was given the news of his reward on the very night. He saw Prophet PBUH in his dream. Prophet Muhammad S.A.W addressed that you sacrificed your honor for my love. You forgave your fame which echoed around the city.
Yet your sacrifice has let you earn the place among the Auliyas (the friends of Allah). Indeed, the great sacrifice has a great reward! The world knows the wrestler today as Junaid Baghdadi Wali Ullah and not a wrestler anymore.