Thought I'd share a touching and thought-provoking anecdote about Sh. Hakim al-Tirmidhi from an article I just read in connection with my Sisyphean thesis.
His family life seems to have been happy, based on sincerity, respect, and lovel. Farid al-Din al-Attar relates that his children, asked how they knew if he were angry, replied that he used to treat them, on such occasions, with an affection which was even stronger than usual, but at the same time refrained from food and drink. Moreover, he shed tears and cried out in supplication: 'O Lord, have I aroused Thy anger that thou hast permitted me to become angry? O my Lord, I repent. Guide them back to the right way.' This is how they knew that he was angry with them. Therefore they repented, and asked his forgiveness, until he forsook his grief.
Dr. Muhammad Ibraheem Al-Geyoushi, "Al-Hakim al-Tirmidhi: His works and thoughts", Islamic Quarterly, vol XIV, issue 4, 1971, p172.
Another fascinating and beautiful tidbit: Tirmidhi would only drink well water out of concern that river water had come from a place where sin had occured.
He's also highly unusual (unique ?) in the annals of Sufism for writing of not only his own, but his wife's spiritual visions.
A fascinating figure.
Back to the regular scheduled programming.