REVIVAL OF RELIGIOUS LEARNINGS IMAM GHAZZALI'S
Chapter 2. Patience and gratefulness 61
Merits of patience 61
Merits of gratefulness 76
God's plan in creation of gold and silver 83
and hoarding of food staffs and ownership of land
Modes of expressing gratefulness 88
Rewards of patience in calamities 108
PATIENCE AND GRATEFT?LNESS
MERITS OF PATIENCE
Quran: God praised those who adopt patience and mentioned about patience more than several times in the
Quran. He kept most good deeds and merits linked with patience. God says: When they kept patience, I
created leaders from amongst them who showed guidance according to My instruction -32 : 24. God says:
Owing to the patience of Banu Israil, the words of your Lord were perfected well over them. God says: I
will reward those for their good works who are patient. God say: They will be given double rewards for
their patience. God says: The patient will_ be given rewards fully without accounts. God says: Fasting
is only for Me and I will give its rewards. He kept connection with those having patience with Himself
and promised that He is with the patient. God says: Take to patience, God is with the patient - 2 :
249. God says: If you keep patience and fear God your Lord will help you with five thousand
well armed angels. God says: There are blessings and mercy upon them from their Lord and they are those
who are guided-2:58.
Hadis: - The Prophet said: Patience is half of faith. He said: The lowest measure of what you have been
given is sure faith and firm determination of patience. He who has been given a portion of these two
qualities has got no fear even if he prays little at night and fasts little during day time. If you can
stand with firm foot with patience just as you are now and do not turn away from this way, it is dear
to me. If anybody does divine service equal to all of you after turning away from patience, it will not
be dear to me. I fear the world will be opened to you after me. You will then cherish hatreu'"'for one
another and the dwellers of heaven will then be dissatisfied with you. He who keeps patience and
expects reward, will get. full reward. Then he recited this verse: What is near you will come to an end
and what is near God will only remain. I will give full rewards to those who being patient do good
works -16 : 96.
It is reported from Hazrat Jaber that a man asked the Prophet about faith and he said: That is patience
and forbearance. The Prophet said: Patience is a jewel among the jewels of Paradise.
The Prophet was once asked: What is faith? He said: Patience.
This is just like his saying: Pilgrimage is Arafat. This means that
the great pillar of pilgrimage is to wait at Arafat. Similarly the
general pillar of faith is patience. The Prophet said: To say
against what passion dictates is the best act. God sent revelation
to David: Follow My conduct. One of my conduct is that I have
great patience. The Prophet once went to the Ansars and asked:
Are you believers? They remained silent. Hazrat Omar submitted: 0 Messenger of God, we are believers.
He asked: What is the sign of your faith? They said: We are grateful both in joys and sorrows, keep
patience in dangers and difficulties and remain satisfied at what was pre-measured. The Prophet said:
By the Lord of Ka'ba, you are then really believers. Prophet Jesus Christ said: You cannot earn what
you love till you keep patience at what you do not love. The Prophet said: Had patience been given the
form of man, it would have been kind. God loves the patient.
Sayings of the wise: Hazrat Omar wrote to Abu Musa Ash'ari: Take to patience. Know that patience is of
two kinds, one is better than the other. It is good to have patience at disaster but better than this
is to protect oneself from unlawful things. Know that patience is the gist of faith. The reason is that
God fear is the greatest religious act and that is gained by patience. Hazrat Ali said: Faith is built
upon four things-sure faith, patience, Jihad and good judgment. He said also: Patience is to faith just
as head is to body. He who has got no head has got no body. Similarly he who has got no patience has
got no faith. Hazrat Omar said: Iman has got two burdens - blessings and mercy. This appears from the
following verse - 2: 157. On them is blessing from their Lord and mercy and they are those who are
guided. We found him patient. How good is the servant as he is most repentant. Hazrat Abu Darda'a said:
To remain patient at commands and to remain satisfied with fate is the best rank of faith.
REAL KNOWLEDGE AND MEANING OF PATIENCE
Know, 0 reader, that patience is an important stage of religion and a station for the so journers in
the path of religion. The stages of religion are controlled by three matters - knowledge, condition and
action. Knowledge is the root and condition arises out of knowledge and action is the fruit of
condition. So knowledge is like a tree, conditions are its branches
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 63
and actions are its fruits. These three matters are engrained in all
the stages of one who walks in the path of religion. Patience is an
attribute of man only and angels, birds and beasts have no such
attribute. An angel has got no necessity of patience as he has got
no no nature of evil. Lower animals are guided by instincts and greed. They have got no need for
patience. The angels are always
immerged in love of God and they have got no evil propensities. Man has got animal propensities in his
infancy. Then he feels greed for food, then desire for plays and sports, then desire for marriage
comes. At first he has got no power for patience, then after dawn of intellect clashes begin and at
that time patience is necessary. At the time of maturity he is placed under two angels. One shows him
the path of guidance and another gives his strength. By these two angels, he is raised from a lower
animal to the rank of a man. At that time, he is given two qualities - one quality is that of the
knowledge of God and His Prophet and another is knowledge the knowledge of good on consideration of the
ultimate good. These two things are gained from the two angels of guidance and knowledge. A lower
animal has got no knowledge or consideration for the ultimate good. It is guided by present happiness.
Man knows by the light of guidance that he will suffer in the end if guided by low desires but that is
not even sufficient to remove evils. There are many injurious things which he cannot remove for want of
strength. So to remove the disease of low desires, strength is necessary with which he fights with low
desires and greed. For that, God places another angel who helps him and gives him strength to control
greed like an unseen soldier. Then fight ensues between the angel of greed and the angel of suppression
of greed. This struggle ensues between these two forces. Mind is the battle field. Inspiration for good
comes from the angel and propensities of passion come from the devil. To establish the instinct of
good, patience is necessary which control the propensities of evil. If patience is acquired, there
comes Marfat or knowledge of God which is the cause of fortune in the next world and in this world. The
knowledge of God which is deep rooted is called faith or Iman. The above two angels are within the
control of two angels called Keraman Katebin or honourable writers. They are entrusted to every man.
They write sins and virtues in the pages of mind called Records of deeds or Amalnama.
This record of deeds will be opened twice-once at the time of death and then on the Judgement Day. The
Prophet said: When a
PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
64 PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
person dies, his resurrection occurs. He remains alone at that time and he is said: You will come to me
alone as I have created you first. He is then said: Your soul is enough in rendering accounts. On the
great day of Resurrection, he will be presented. among the people.
PATIENCE IS HALF OF FAITH: There are two reasons and two necessities to show that patience is half of
faith. The first reason is to confirm the basic principle of religion and to act according to it. There
in there are two pillars of faith sure faith and patience. The meaning of sure faith is
immutableknowledge which God shows to a man about the fundamental principles of Islam. The meaning of
patience is action to the requirements of the immutable faith. This grows knowledge that sin is
injurious and virtue is beneficial and to give up sin and to gain virtue are not possible without
patience. Patience is to put in to action &.h,, inclination of virtue after suppression ression of evil
propensities. In this angle of vision, patience is half of faith. For this reason, the Prophet
mentioned patience and faith together. He said: You have been given but little of sure faith and
(2) Second Reason. Faith arises out of knowledge which again arises out of the good deeds of a man.
Man's actions are divided into two what is beneficial both is this world and in the next and what is
injurious in both the worlds. Patience is necessary about what is injurious to men in both the worlds
and gratefulness is necessary about what is beneficial in both the worlds. In this view, gratefulness
is half of faith. Ibn Masud said: Iman is divided into two - patience and gratefulness.
DIFFERENT KINDS OF PATIENCE: The first kind is to have patience over physical pains, such as patience
in the difficult tasks of divine services and in the sudden accidents and dangers such as severe
beating and serious disease. If patience is observed according to the dictates of religion, it is
praise-worthy. The second kind is to have patience at the inclination of evil and greed of passion. To
have patience at the greed of belly and sexual passion is named Afat or self-control. Bravery is
patience is battles. Forbearance is patience by appeasement of anger: Expansion of breast is patience
at turns of fortunes. Renunciation is patience from happiness and pleasures. Satisfaction is patience
at present possessions. Most conducts of faith lie in patiences. For this reason, when the Prophet was
asked about faith, he
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 65
replied that patience is faith as there is no act of faith more difficult than patience. The Prophet
said: Pilgrimage is Arafat. in other words the acts of Arafat are more difficult out of the actions of
pilgrimage. To forbear all these hardships is called patience. God says: Those who keep patience in
dangers, wants and struggles are the truthful ones and they are also the God fearing ones.
PATIENCE IN CONSIDERATION OF STRENGTH
(a) To control the evil inclinations of nature requires the constant exercise of patience. Their
numbers are few and they say: God is our Lord and they are firm in this. They are the truthful ones.
They are addressed by God as thus: 0 satisfied soul, return to thy Lord well-pleased with Him and
(b) To surrender to the forces of devil and all inclinations towards religion are routed. They are the
heedless ones and their numbers are many. The enemies of God rule over their souls. God says about
them: I would have guided everyone had I wished, but My promise will come out true: I will fill up Hell
with man and jinn - 9:112. God says regarding them: Turn away from those who turn away from My
remembrance and who do not wish except the pleasure of this world's life. The signs of this life are
despair and hopelessness. For that reason, the Prophet said: Wise is he who humbles himself and acts
for what will come after death and fool is he who follows his low desires and hopes
(c) To continue struggles between two forces-forces of good and forces of evil. Sometimes the forces of
good prevail and sometimes forces of evil. Such a man has mixed up good with
PATIENCE IN CONSIDERATION OF SEVERITY AND EASE: The first kind of patience is not acquired without
great efforts and the second kind of patience does not require such efforts. God says: He who gives
charity and fears God and takes to patience and considers good as good, I shall make his path easy - 92
: 7. The practice of patience leads to contentment which is therefore higher than patience. The Prophet
said: Do divine service with contentment. If you are unable to do it, there is
66 PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
abundant good in keeping patience in fighting with your baser self. A friend of God said: A patient man
stands on three stages. In the first stage, he gives up following his baser self. In the second stage,
he remains satisfied with his fate and this is the rank of one who renounces the world. In the third
stage, he likes what his Master does about him and this is the rank of the truthful and this is the
stage of love. The stage of love is higher than that of contenment and the stage of contentment is
higher than that of patience.
PATIENCE IN CONSIDERATION OF LAWS: Patience is divided into compulsory optional, unlawful and
abominable things in consideration of laws. To keep patience from unlawful things is compulsory and to
keep patience from the abominable things is optional. To keep patience at a difficulty which is
prohibiteA is alcn prohibited 1.1P is HIP a man whn keens
patience seeing that his hand is being cut off, or the hand of his son is being cut off, or he is like
a man who keeps patience even seeing that a stranger is cohabiting with his wife. Such kind of patience
is unlawful. So patience is sometimes good and sometimes bad.
CASES IN WHICH PATIENCE IS GOOD: There are two kinds of things which a man has to face in this world,
things which are conformable to his nature and things which are against his nature. In both these
things, patience is necessary. Things which are conformable to nature are physical health, safety,
properties and wealth, name and fame, great number of followers and helpers. To keep patience a t these
worldly things is necessary as he who throws himself to enjoy these things without control keeps
himself busy in sins. A wise man said: A believer can keep patience in untoward circumstances but
nobody other than a truthful man can keep patience in pleasures and happiness. The saint Sahal_.
Tastari said: To keep patience in pleasures and happiness is more difficult than to keep patience in
disasters. When the treasures of the world fell into the hands of the companioi , they said: We have
been tried with various kinds of dangers and difficulties and we kept patience over them. But now we
are being tried with wealth and riches and we can't keep patience about them. For this reason the
Almighty warned us from the following things. God says: 0 believers, let not your property or your
children keep you forgetful from the
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 67
remembrance of God -63 : 9. God says: There are enemies for you amongst your wives and children. So be
careful of them - 64: 14. The Prophet said: Children are the causes of miserliness, cowardice and
sorrows. When the Prophet saw his grandson Hasan coming towards him drawing up his clothes, he
descended from his pulpit, lifted him up and said: God has truly said: Your properties and your
children are trials for you. When I saw my grandson faltering, I could not help but lift him up. There
are lessons from this for the wise men. He who can keep patience at pleasures and happiness is called a
real man. The meaning of patience from pleasures and happiness is not to be addicted to these things.
Such a man thinks that everything has been kept as trust to him and soon he shall have to return it. He
does not let himself swayed by the strain of happiness and does not keep himself engaged in sports and
plays, enjoyments and happiness.
He spends his properties and wealth in the wa of God a_d
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towards fulfillment of his duties towards God and His creations. He fulfills the duties of his tongue
by delivering sermons and speaking truths and the duties of his body by physically helping others.
2. Patience at things against nature: This patience is divided into three classes,- (a) patience at
things within the control of man, such as divine service, giving up sin etc, (b) patience which is out
of control of man, such as natural calamities, dangers and difficulties (c) and patience at a thing in
which a man has got no freedom but he can remove it, such as removing the difficulty of man by
avenging. With regard to the subjects within control of man, they are sub-divided into two. The first
sub- division includes such divine services in which patience is necessary. To have patience in divine
services is difficult, as nature does not want to be slave but loves to be master. For this reason, a
certain sage said : There is no such man who does not say. what Pharaoh said : I am your biggest lord.
There is no such man who does not say this kind of words with his servants, slaves and persons
subordinate to him. As the serfdom of body is difficult, so also divine service is difficult. One is
not willing to serve God by prayer and other services owing to idleness and to pay zakat and other
charities owing to miserliness. It is difficult to do divine service through pilgrimage and jihad and
owing to idleness and miserliness. A worshiper feels necessity of this patience under three
circumstances. Firstly by having patience in divine
68 PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
services, such as to make motive sincere, to free himself from the evil of show, to determine firmly to
do sincere deeds. The Prophet said : All actions are based on motive and everyone gets what he intends
for. God says : They are not ordered but to do divine service being sincere to Him. For this reason,
God preceded patience before actions saying : Those who have patience and do good deeds. Secondly,
patience in divine services, such as observing rules of Shariat in worship, restraining oneself in evil
actions and thoughts in the midst of prayer and to remain attentive to the thoughts of God. The third,
circumstance is to have patience after divine service, such as patience from broadcasting it to the
people, from restraining oneself from a desire of getting honour. God says :.Don't make your action
void. He says : Don't make your charitable actions void by harsh treatment and rebuke- 2:264.
Patience in sinful actions-To restrain oneself from sinful deeds means patience in sinful deeds. The
necessity of such patience is beyond description. God prohibits sinful deeds in this verse : He
prohibits you from obscene and abominable actions and rebellion-16 : 90. The Prophet said : The refugee
is one who gives up evil deeds and Mujahid is one who fights with his passion. Sin is committed if one
acts according to the promptings of his passions. If habit is added to passion, two enemies of devil
stand against the party of God. Under this circumstance, only inspiration of religion is not sufficient
and not strong enough to control it, such as backbiting, telling falsehood, self- praise, to
take pride etc.
The objects of tee second class are things out of control of man. Though these subjects are not under
control, yet a man can remove them. If anybody gives trouble to another by his words and deeds,
patience is sometimes compulsory in such a case and not to take retaliation and sometimes it is
regarded as additional virtuous act. A certain companion said : If anybody cannot have patience at the
trouble inflicted by another, he can't regard his faith as real faith. God says : We shall certainly
have patience at what they trouble us with those who rely on God. Once the Prophet was distributing
alms among the poor and the distressed. A certain desert Arab said to him at that time: By this
distribution God, pleasure is not sought. When the Prophet was
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 69',
informed of this, his two cheeks turned red and then he said May God show mercy on my brother Moses. He
suffered more than this and he took patience. God says : Leave the trouble inflicted by them and rely
on God-33 : 48 . God says : Have patience at what they say and leave them a good leave-73 : 10. God
says : I know that your heart is saddended at what they say. Do glorify your Lord-5 : 98. God says :
You will certainly hear many words troubling you from the People of the Book and polytheists. If you
can have patience at that and fear God, it will be an act of bravery-3 : 186. For this reason, God
praised those who restrain themselves from taking revenge. God says : If you take revenge (for
religion), inflict such trouble as has been inflicted on you, but if you take to patience, there are
abundant good for the patient-16: 126. The Prophet said : Join the tie with one who severs it from you.
Give charity to one who deprives you. Forgive one who oppresses you. I saw in the Injil in which Jesus
said : You have been said before : Take a tooth for a tooth and a nose for a nose, but I say to you :
Don't do harm in lieu of harm but turn your left cheek to one who slaps your right cheek. Give pour
cloth to one who takes your shirt. Walk with one two miles with his load who takes you to one mile with
his load.' These are instructions for patience at the injuries inflicted by others. So high merits are
obtained through patience.
Third class of patience which is outside human control. Examples of such patience are sudden mishaps,
dangers, pangs of death, loss of health owing to illness, loss of eye sight. Hazrat Ibn Abbas said:
There are news of three kinds of patience in the Holy Quran - (1) to have patience in doing compulsory
things ordained by God, (2) to keep oneself away from the forbidden things of God, (3) and to have
patience at sudder" dangers and difficulties. Good merits are obtained for such patience. Every
believer can have patience at unlawful things but it is only the prophets who can have patience at the
natural calamities. For this reason, the Prophet said: 0 God, I pray to you to grant me such firm faith
as can make dangers and difficulties from Thee easy on me. It is understood from this that sure faith
is linked with patience. (1) Abu Solaiman said: By God, we can't have patience at what we love. How can
we then have patience at what we do not love? (2) The Holy Prophet said: God says: When I send on My
servant any physical, economic or family trouble and if he forbears it, I will feel shame to set up for
him balance and
70 PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 71
measure on the Resurrection Day. (3) The Prophet said: To await with patience for release from a danger
is included within divine service. He also said: If a servant prays with the following according to the
order of God after falling in a danger, his prayer is accepted: We are surely for God and to Him we
shall return. 0 God, give me blessing in my danger and leave good behind it. (4) Hazrat Anas said: That
Prophet said that God said: 0 Gabriel, do you know what reward I give to one whose eyes I have robbed?
He says: 0 God, we don't know anything except what You have taught us. God said: Its reward is his
constant living in My abode and his look towards My face. (5) The Prophet said: God says: When I
examine a servant with a trial and he keeps patience at that and does not complain of Me to his
visitors, I give him better flesh in lieu of his former flesh and better blood in lieu of his former
blood. When I cure him, I cure him after forgiving his sins. (6) Hazrat Daud prayed once: 0 Lord what
is the reward of a
person who keeps patience at his dangers by seeking' your pleasure? God said: His reward is this that I
will dress him with the dress of faith and will never take it from him. (7) The Caliph Omar bin Abdul
Aziz once addressed the people thus: If God takes away a gift which He gave to a person, He gives him
a gift better than his previous gift provided he keeps patience. Then he read this verse: The patient
will be given full reward without account. (8) When the saint Fazil was asked about patience, he said:
To keep satisfied with the decree of God is patience. He was asked: How is that? He replied: The
satisfied man does not expect rank more than his rank. (9) It is narrated that when Shibli was
imprisoned at Maristan, some people met him. He asked them: Who are you? They said: Your friends. We
have come to meet you. He then stoned at them. When they were about to flee away, he said to them: If
you are my real friends, you would have kept patience at my difficulty. (10) A certain sage used to
take out a writing from his pocket every hour and read it. Therein it was written: Be patient at the
decree of your Lord as you are-in My careful sight - 52 : 48. (11) It is narrated that the wife of the
saint Fateh Mussalli once slipped down and her joint was broker:.- She
"then gave thanks to God after rising up. She was asked: Have you got no pain? She said: The joy of the
reward of pain removed from my heart the pangs of pain. (12) Hazrat Daud said to his son Solaiman: Fear
of God in a believer is proved by three things. (1) He relies on God for what he cannot earn. (2) he
remains satisfied with God for what he earns and (3)-he keeps patience for what
goes away from him. (13) Our Prophet said: Not to complain of your wants and sufferings and not to tell
anybody of your dangers appertain to the glorification of God and spiritual knowledge. (14) A certain
pious man said that he had lost a purse on the way owing to the action of a pick-pocket. He said, 0
God: Give him similar reward. Perchance he has got greater need of the purse than mine: (15) Another
pious man said: Once during my journey, I saw Abu Huzaifa fallen on the ground wounded in the battle
field of Mawla Salem and asked him: Shall I give you water? He said: Take me near the foes and put
water on my shield as I am fasting. If I live up to sun set I will break my fast therewith. Such was
the patience of those. who sought the next world. (16) It has been reported from Ramisah Omme Salim
that she said: One of my sons died during the absence of his father. I kept him covered with one sheet
of cloth in a corner of the house.
A little after my ffter my '-
husband va~iu came. I ~ presented before him food. He ate it and asked me: How is my son? I said that
he is a little better by the will of God than he was before. I lay with my husband in that night being
well dressed. Then I said: Will you not be astonished at my neighbour? He asked me: What has become of
him? I told him: I lent him a good thing. When I demanded it of him, he threatened me and began to weep
out of sorrow. He said: What he did is manifestly wrong. I said: This is your son. I took him as a loan
from God but He took him close to Him. He recited: We are for God and to Him we shall return. Next
morning he went to the Prophet and gave him this news. He said: 0 God, make their last night good. (19)
At the time when Ibrahim, son of the Prophet died, the Prophet began to shed tears. He was asked; Why
do you weep when you have prohibited us from it? He said: It is through affection. He who is kind gets
kindness from God. This weeping did not out me from the state of contentment.
From what has been discussed above, it has been clear to you that in all circumstances and actions of
life, patience is absolutely necessary. If one keeps patience, still hundreds of empty thoughts may
arise in his mind and keep him forgetful of God. Thus he is not free from the whisperings of the devil
and mind is. not free from thoughts-thoughts of past and future causing loss of valuable time. The
weapon of a man is his Qalb or heart and his life is his valuable asset. When a moment is lost without
remembrance of God, it is spent uselessly.
72 PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
DEVIL'S TWO ARMIES: The devil has got two company of armies. One company lover over the sky and another
over land. The movements of the company which lover over the sky are called passions. This is because
the devil was created of fire and man of dried clay. Dried clay means clay burnt by fire. The nature of
fire is to rise upwards and of earth to go down. When the devil was ordered to make prostration before
man, he was thereby ordered to remove the pride and passions of upward tendency and to be subservient
to man but he declined and disobeyed God. The life of prostration is humility and its body is placing
of forehead on the ground. It means to crush all sorts of vanity and pride. So you should shift the
jewel from its outward cover, life from its body and the seed from its outer form and guide your life
accordingly. This open world is the outer cover and the next work is its inner seed. If you take up the
outer world and neglect
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inner seed. You should understand that the devil has been given time up to the Resurrection Day and he
will not stop to whisper evils. If your object of thought be one and the same (God), the devil will not
find place of refuge in your heart. When you become sincerely devoted to God, the supremacy of the
devil will vanish. The devil runs in your vains like the blowing of wind in a cup. It will be
impossible to keep the cup empty either of water or of air. So also the case with mind. It is engaged
always with religious thoughts and actions, it becomes free from the influence of devil, or devilish
tendencies. For this reason,, God says: I appoint a devil for one who remains aloof from
God-remembrance and he becomes then his companion. The Holy Prophet said: God is dissatisfied with a
young man having an empty mind. When Manusr Hallaj was raised upon the gallows, he was asked: What is
Sufism? He replied: It is your soul. If you engage it, it will keep you engaged. So the meaning of
patience is to keep away from every destructive and inurious thing.
MEANS OF RAISING STRENGTH OF PATIENCE: Know, 0 readers, that every disease has got a medicine. Though
patience is troublesome, yet it is possible to acquire it by the medicine which is a mixture of
knowledge and action. When patience has got different classes, its diseases also are different. The
medicine of a disease is its opposite thing. We shall explain it by a few examples. Take the case of
sexual passion. When it
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 73
becomes strong, when it cannot be kept under control, when sight cannot be kept under control and when
mind cannot be kept under control, different medicines shall have to be taken. In order to remove them
from mind, it shall have to be kept engaged in Zikr, Fikr and good deeds. There are three modes. (1)
Firstly, if it rises out of delicious and excessive food, it should be brought under control by fasting
and by breaking it with little food without meat and other exciting foods. (2) Secondly, the basic
causes shall have to be cut off, namely sight of eye, as it enkindles passion in mind. The remedy is to
live in loneliness and to be careful in seeing beautiful things. The Holy Prophet said: Sight is a
poisonous arrow out of the arrows of the devil. The devil throws it with such force that no shield can
protect it. The sure remedy is to flee away from it or to shut up the eyes. (3) To satisfy passion in a
lawful manner by marriage. This is most useful in
case or many persons. the Prophet said: You should marry, if
you are unable, keep fast which cuts the sexual passion. These are the three modes for giving up food
to cut' off the basic causes of passion.
MODES OF INCREASING RELIGIOUS IMPULSE: There are two modes to make strong religious impulses.
";Firstly, to give to the mind the sweet taste of rewards and
merits of temporal and spiritual matters as result of efforts against passion and to think of the
traditi˘ns that promised temporal and spiritual rewards of patience..The merits that are gained in
having patience in dangers and difficulties cannot be gained otherwise. This should be realised in
full. Mind should be given the lesson that satisfaction of carnal desires is short lived but one can
gain everlasting supremacy by patience in dangers and difficulties, that dangers and difficulties are
short and remain during life time but their rewards will r train for ever. This sure belief is termed
Eqin or certain faith and this in turn produces firm determination for patience.
2. Secondly, to make religious, feeling habituated to fight passions so that it may have pleasure of
victory. In this way, religious impulse is made strong. For this reason the strength of the peasants
and soldiers increases as they acquire it by habits. The second medicine is that one should be
habituated from childhood to fight against low desires and passions, as a boy, if trained in physical
exercises from boyhood becomes an athlete. If
a man gives up fight with passion completely, he becomes weak in religious exercises and becomes unable
to control his passions and low desires. This is the medicine in all kinds of patience. One is kept
busy in the preparation of procuring food, dress and other necessities of livelihood. But if he can
free his mind from these things, he can save himself and the secrets of heaven and earth are disclosed
to him. Many a time a good game is earned with little efforts and many a time it cannot be gained with
excessive efforts. This depends entirely on the mercy of God and man has got no hand in the matter. But
it is true that it is under the control of man to be fit to earn that mercy of God by cutting of all
worldly connections. The worldly things attract a man downwards and not upwards to heaven. So the thing
which attracts downwards shall have to be cut off.
'The Prophet said: There is breath of your Lord in the days of your life, why don't you face it? There
are heavenly causes of the attraction to that breath, as God says: There is provision for you in heaven
and what has been promised to you." This is an affair of highest order which is not known to us, but we
should prepare ourselves to receive that thing. This is like the man who cultivates his field well,
plucks out the weeds therefrom and thereafter grows seeds therein. These efforts become fruitless if
God does not send rain. The work is sufficient for a peasant if he cultivates the field well, plucks
out the injurious things therefrom and grows good seeds therein. So a servant must cultivate his mind
well, make it fit for growing seeds of faith and sincerity and then wait for the mercy of God because
no year or month passes without the descent of the mercy of God. As rain is expected in the rainy
season, so descent of God's mercy is mostly expected in opportune moments and times like the day of
Araft, jumma day, the night of blessing, the night of Qadr in Ramzan, the month of Ramzan, the time
when sorrows and sufferings or illness comes, the time when people pray in congregation. As there is
rain after prayer for rain, so also the rains of the mercy of God from the hidden treasures of God and
the rain of Kashf come down. As the vapours rising from mountains and seas from cloud and shower rain,
so also feelings come out of soul and shower blessings. But you are far away from this rain as your
mind is best with passions and low desires. If these are not removed, the illumination of Ma'arfat or
spiritual knowledge will not come out from the recess of heart. It is easier to bring
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 75
water after digging the bottom of a well than to take it by digging lanes up to.this well. Likewise
the water of mercy that lies hidden in the innermost recess of the heart and which lies covered with
refuges like worldly passions must be blown by removing those passions.
The great saint Junaid said: It is easy to take journey towards the next world from the world for a
believer, but it is difficult to renounce the company of men in order to gain divine love, to take
journey towards God. from passions and low desires is very difficult, but it is much more difficult to
have patience after living with God. The temptation of having name and fame is very great. Then why
will it not be a greater object of test to have Rabubiat or to have the pleasure of the attributes of
God in one's life?
God says: Say, soul is an order of God - 1~ : '
order of ~~u 7 iJQ. So to love
God is an attribute of soul. If it does not love Him, it is the effect of the machination of the devil.
As soul is a divine thing, the devil tries to misguide it. This soul searches after everlasting things,
such things which never come to an end. It seeks such honour as has got no disgrace, such safety as has
got no fear, such wealth as has got no want, such perfection as has got no decrease. These are the
attributes of God which should be searched by all men. He who searches them attains perfection and
honour. For this reason, the Prophet said: Fool is he who follows his passion and dares against God.
God mentioned about the disgraceful men in this verse: Never, you love the world and give up the
Hereafter. God says: Turn your faces from those who turn away from My remembrance and who do not like
except this world's life. God sent down Prophets to reclaim lost humanity and to turn their minds
towards the next world. God says: 0 believers, when you are advised to walk swiftly in the path of God,
what has become of you that you keep,attached to the world? Are you satisfied with this world in
preference to the next world? The enjoyment of this world is nothing but insignificant in comparison
with that of the next world.
A certain king asked a saint: Have you got any need? He replied: How can I seek my need from you when
my sovereignty is greater than yours. The king asked him: How is that? He replied: He who is your
master is my slave. The king asked him: How is that? He replied: You are the slave of greed, anger,
PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
passions and belly, but I have overcome them all. So they are my, slaves.
The modes of one engrossed in name and fame (1) He shall flee away from his place of name and fame. God
says: Is not the world of God wide enough for the purpose of emigration? (2) He shall keep himself in
actions opposed to his habits as a thing can be removed by its opposite thing, such as cold by heat.
(3) He shall do these things carefully and gradually as nature can not be changed all of a sudden.
Habits should be changed one by one as the Prophet said: Don't take the religion as a rigour, as he who
thinks it as a rigour, it will overcome him. So habit is the second nature. A boy at first should be
compelled to learn reading and writing. When he is habituated to it, he takes pleasure in education. A
certain pious man asked the saint Shibli about patience - which patience is difficult? He replied:
Patience about God. The pious man said: I don't ask you about it. Shibli said: Tell me then which
patience is most difficult? The pious man said: Patience from God is most difficult. The saint Shibli
then raised up such a loud shriek that he was about to expire. God says: Be patient, vie in patience
with one another and have perseverance therein. In other words, have patience about God and stick to
Him. A certain pious man said: There is wealth in having patience for God and there is )ermanency in
having patience about God and there is fulfillment of promise in having patience with God and there is
dryness in having patience from God.
MERITS OF GRATEFULNESS
Quranic verses: Know, 0 dear readers, that God conjoined gratefulness with Zikr and said: Zikr
(remembrance) of God is most great. He says: Remember Me. I will remember you. Be grateful to me and be
not ungrateful. He says: If you be grateful and have faith, what will He do in giving you punishment?
He says: I will soon reward the grateful - 3:144Q. God says of the devil: The devil said: I will surely
sit on the straight path for them. It has been said that the meaning of straight path is gratefulness.
The devil said: You will not find most of them grateful - 7 : 17Q. God says: There are a few grateful
people among My servants - 34:14Q. God says: If you are grateful, I will surely grant you more - 14 :
7Q. The subjects of this increase are
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 77
five-wealth, grant of invocation, provision, forgiveness and repentance. The Quran says about each
subject in the following verses. About wealth: If God wills, He will make you free from want out of His
grace. About grant of invocation: He can give you what you pray for if He wills. About provision: He
gives provisions to whom He wills without account. About forgiveness of sin: He forgives what is
besides that one whom He pleases. About repentance: He accepts repentance from one whom. He pleases.
These are the attributes of God as He says: He accepts gratefulness and is patient.
Hadis: The Prophet said: He who expresses gratefulness after taking food shall have rank equal to the
rank of one who fasts with patience. Hazrat Ayesha said: All the actions of the Prophet are wonderful.
One night the Prophet slept in my bed, so
much so that my body 1 n
ody touched CU his. ~ T hen e said: 0 daughter of Abu Bakr, leave me, will you worship my Lord? Hazrat
Ayesha said: I wish to spend some time in your company, but I like what you wish. Then the Prophet made
ablutibn an stood up for prayer. He wept so much in prayer that his tears flowed down his breast. Bilal
came and asked him: 0 Prophet of God why do you weep while your past and future sins have been
forgiven? The Prophet said: Shall I not be a grateful servant? Then the following verse was revealed:
In the creation of heavens and earth and in the changing of night and day, there are surely clear signs
for those who are intelligent-3 :190Q.
So it appears that weeping should never be stopped. This is understood from the following anectode. A
certain Prophet was passing by a small stone which was then gushing forth abundant water. He was
greatly astonished. Then God gave it the power of speech and it began to say: Since I heard the
following verse of God "The fuel of Hell will be men and stones (2 :24Q).' I have been weeping being
afraid of it." The Prophet then prayed to God for saving it from Hell and the prayer was granted. After
some days, the Prophet saw it in previous condition and asked: Why do you weep now? The stone said: I
wept before out of fear, but now I weep out of joy and gratefulness.
The mind of man is hard like stone, rather harder than stone and the hardness is removed by a state
arising out of fear and gratefulness. The Prophet said: It will be proclaimed on the Resurrection Day:
Rise up those who proclaimed the glory of
PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
78 PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
God. Then a party will rise up with banners and they will enter paradise. He was asked: Who are the
proclaimers of glory? He said: Those who express gratefulness to God in happiness and adversity. The
Prophet also said: Praise is the sheet of the Merciful. God revealed to Jacob: I am pleased with My
friend for his gratefulness. God then revealed to him describing the qualities of the patient. "Their
abode is the abode of peace. They will enter therein. They will be busy in gratefulness." That is the
good speech. They will pray more at the time of gratefulness. Then I will grant them My vision." When
the following verse was revealed about hidden treasure "Those who hoard up gold and silver and do not
spend them in the way of God give them-news of severe chastisement (9 : 35Q)." Hazrat Omar asked the
Prophet: What wealth shall we keep? The Prophet said: A remembering tongue, a grateful heart and a
SPIRIT OF GRATEFULNESS: Know, 0 dear readers, that gratefulness is one of the good stages for those who
travel-in the path of religion. There are steps of gratefulness-knowledge, condition and action.
Knowledge is the root out of which condition takes birth and out of condition action arises. Knowledge
consists in the fact that fortune comes from the Fortune-giver. The happiness that occurs out of
getting that fortune is called condition or state of mind. To stand upon love and the objects of
fortune- giver is called action which keeps connection with mind, tongue and limbs of body.
WHAT IS KNOWLEDGE OF GRATEFULNESS? To know it, three things shall have to be known first - (1) source
of gratefulness. (2) cause of given fortune (3) and the attributes of the fortune giver. Fortune,
fortune-giver and fortune-taker to know these three things are necessary. This knowledge follows the
knowledge of Tauhid and Taqdir. It means that one should have knowledge that whatever is in the
universe comes from God and His gifts. If there is perfection of this knowledge there can not be Shirk
or setting up partnership with God. If any gift comes from the king and if any body feels that there is
kindness of his minister therein, it is setting up'partnership in the gift and thus enjoyment will be
divided. Although the gift comes through his minister and in black and white, he or the paper and the
ink are not entitled to have gratefulness as they are only mediums and not the source of the gift. They
have no power and are guided
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 79
by the king. Likewise, he who knows God and-His wonderful creation knows fully well that all the things
in the world - the sun, the moon, the stars and all other things are. His creation and guided by Him as
the pen is guided" by a writer. Those animals which have got willl are-subservient to His will although
He has given them freedom of will. They are like the man in charge of the treasures of the king. The
man has got no power to wish against
-the will of the king and cannot spend a farthing therefrom without the will of the king. So the man
who takes the gift from God to you is bound to take it to you as God enkindles in him a strong desire
to make a gift to you. God also enkindles in him a will to gift it along with a feeling that it will do
him good both in this world and in the next and that the gift of a farthing here will be met with
innumerable rewards in the hereafter just as a seed sprins forth a hundred seeds. This gift of charity
is not to the poor man but rather it is to your self as you will get good rewards_ in lieu of your
charity. In this way, you will recognise. God and get acquainted with His works. So God is to be
praised and entitled to get gratefulness.
One day, the Prophet Moses said in his invocation: 0 God you have created Adam. How has he expressed
gratefulness to you? God said: He knew that everything came from Me. This knowledge is his
gratefulness. So instead of beinggrateful to the giver, be grateful to Him who created the giver and
(2) State of mind on gratefulness: Know, readers, that the mind assumes a state when knowledge of
gratefulness comes to it. The happiness which arises in mind out of gratefulness is called its state
the feeling of gratefulness and humility for the donee. This state of mind in gratefulness is of three
kinds. Take an illustration. When a king wants to go out and gives a horse to a certain man, the latter
feels joy for three causes - (1) for getting a horse which will be useful to him, (2) for getting it
from the head of state, (3) and for enjoyment of getting by riding on it, These are the three stages of
gratefulness. In the first stage, the attention of the donee remains confined to the horse only and not
to its giver. In the second stage, he expresses gratefulness to the giver. In the third stage,
gratefulness gains perfection as he expresses it to God who enkindled a will in the king to gift the
horse to him. This is the highest stage. The saint Shibli said: To turn attention to the giver rather
than to the gift is gratefulness. The saint Khaoas said:
PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 81
People in general express gratefulness on getting food, dress and drink but the really wise men do it
in getting beneficial things to soul. He who gets enjoyment in getting only the things enjoyable to
eye, ear, belly and sexual organ, cannot express real gratefulness as there is disease in his soul.
Real happiness consists in the happiness of soul by remembering God. A diseased man may get pleasure in
eating earth or displeasure in sweets.
(3) To get acquainted with actions arising out of gratefulness. It is to act with happiness by getting
acquainted with the giver of gift. This action is connected with mind, tongue and all bodily limbs.
These are the three modes of expressing gratefulness. To express gratefulness by mind is to pray for
good of all people and to cherish such a will. To express gratefulness by tongue is to praise God under
all circumstances; and to express it by the bodily limbs means to employ them in the service of the
Lord and to save them from committing sins prohibited by Him.
The Prophet once asked a man: How are you? He replied: I am well. The Prophet asked him the same
question and he replied the same with addition: I praise God and I am grateful to Him. The Prophet
said: I wanted to have this reply from you. The pious man of yore asked the same question to have the
third reply. Whenever a person is asked about his condition, he either expresses gratefulness or tells
him his sorrows and difficulties or remains silent. In case of gratefulness there are rewards, in case
of sorrows and difficulties, there are sins on the part of the pious. Why will it not be sin when
complaint is made against God's actions? When a man cannot remain patient in dangers and difficulties,
let him tell it to God as He only gives troubles and removes them. God says: Those who are worshipped
besides God are not the master of your provisions. So seek provision from God, worship Him and be
grateful to Him. God says: Those whom you worship besides God are servants like you.
MODES OF GRATEFULNESS IN DUTIES TOWARDS GOD: There are two causes for which gratefulness to God is not
similar to gratefulness to men. The first cause is that God is above all wants, while men are in wants.
God is free from name, fame, prayers and prostrations. The second cause is that man has got freedom of
will by which he does everything and that freedom is a gift from God. The Prophet Moses said: 0 Lord,
express gratefulness to Thee when I am unable to express it
without another gift? To be able to express gratefulness to Thee is another gift from Thee to me. That
gift compels me to express gratefulness to Thee. There is another Hadis: When you understand that gi;t
comes from Me. I am pleased with that gratefulness. Take an illustration - A certain king sent to his
servant one conveyance, one dress and some cash money with this object that he would come to him from a
distance using all these things. Two conditions arise out of these gifts. The first condition is that
if he comes to the king, he may engage him in some important work. The second' condition is that if he
comes to him, his service may not be necessary and his glory will not be increased or decreased by his
presence but it will do him benefit and not the king. The first condition does not apply to God as He
is above all wants, but the second condition applies to Him. In other words, the gifts of God i f
tutilised in proper manner will do him benefit and not God. A servant may be grateful or ungrateful. If
he comes to the king by utilising his gifts, he will be grateful and if he does not care them and
misuses his gifts, he will be ungrateful. Similarly if he utilises the gifts of God according to the
ways prescribed by Him, it shall be expressing gratefulness to Him, but if he acts to the contrary, it
will be expressing ungratefulness to Him. God says: (95: 6Q). I have created man in the best mould.
Then I threw him to the lowest abyss except those who believe and do good. For them there is great
reward never to be cut off." By this help of the gifts of God, man can rise to the highest pinnacle of
glory and if not utilised he may go down to the lowest abyss. Proper use, misues or absence of use will
not affect God in the least, but they are linked with fortune and misfortune of man. To use God's gifts
according to His will and directions is gratefulness.
ACTIONS DEAR AND NOT DEAR TO GOD: Know, 0 dear readers that gratefulness does not become perfect if we
do not know the distinction between actions loved by God and actions not loved by God, because
gratefulness means to spend His gifts in acts loved by God and ungratefulness means to spend them in
acts not loved by Him or keep them without use. There are two subtle things for this distinction-(1) to
hear the verses of the Quran and tradition of the Prophet and (2) to see with the eye of thought or
knowledge. For this reason. God sent the apostles who showed them His ways. So these ways are the
PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 83
of good actions. Those who do not tread these ways do not
express gratefulness. There is wisdom in the creation of everything in the world. That wisdom is of two
classes-open and secret. The open wisdom is learning or knowledge. Wisdom of God in creating the sun is
that thereby we can understand the distinetion between day and night, that day time is for procuring
provisions and night time is for rest. There are other subtle causes. The Quran described the open
causes but we can understand the secret subtle causes by knowledge. God says : I send profuse rain,
then split-up the earth and grow therein crops and grapes- 80 : 25Q. God says : I have adorned the sky
of the world with adornment of stars-37:6Q. So there are hundreds of purposes in the creation of these
and other things. We see that God created eye to see and not to hear, ear to hear and not to see, hands
to catch and not to walk, legs to walk and not to catch, nose to smell and not to hear. There are
secret limbs, such as stomach, heart, spleen, livers, sinews and other things. Each limb has been
assigned a special function to perform. Some limb helps digestion, some purifies blood, some circulates
blood, some creates urine. Those who have been given special knowledge of the functions of each limb
cannot be compared with that of God. So if a man does not utilize a thing for which it is created
becomes ungrateful to God for the gift. He who unjustly beats another with his hand expresses
ungratefulness for the gift of hands as hands have been created for removing the injurious things to
soul and receive the beneficial things, but not to destroy a thing or beat or assul t a person. The man
who looks to a strange woman with lust expresses ungreatfulness for the gift of eyes. By the above act.
he does a thing against the will of God. His will is that by His help and by the help of the created
things, he will meet with God. So one cannot meet with. Him till he loves Him. He will not get His love
.ill he remembers Him always. This remembrance does not becom possible without a body and the body does
not go alright if it is not given food and the food is not possible without earth, water and air. These
things are not possible without earth and sky and without the open and secret limbs. So all these
things have been created for body and body is the outer cover of soul and a satisfied soul will reach
God by virtue of long divine service. For this reason, God said : I have created man and jinn that they
may serve Me and I don't expect povision from them-50:156Q.
GOD'S PLAN IN CREATION OF GOLD AND SILVER
God and silver are two gifts of God and by their help all the worldly acts are smoothly done. These are
nothing but stones and have got no value of their own. People want to have them as by their exchange
commodities of the world can be purchased. There are several thing which he cannot gather and several
things for which he has got no necessity. For example, a man has got food, but has got no riding camel.
He who has got a camel has got necessity of food. So between them there is the necessity of exchange of
these two things and fixation of their value. But value of these things are not equal. Therefore gold
and silver work as judges for all things for fixation of value and for getting the things through their
medium. Then it is said that a camel's price is one hundred dinars and that the price of 100 fowls is
the same. So by the help of gold and silver their values are adjusted, although they have got no value
of their own. God appointed them as judges for ascertainment of values and prices of all things and for
their exchange. For this reason, these gold and silver are dear to men. He who has got gold and silver
possesses as it it were all things. A mirror has got no value of its own, but its value lies in the
fact that it assumes picture of all things. Similar is the case with gold and silver. as by their
exchange all necessary things can be purchased. There are other plans, just as a word has got no
meaning unless it is conjoined with other words.
Misuse of gold and silver. He who by these gold and silver does such an act which is opposed to the
above plan of God, commits sin and is ungrateful to the gift of God. If instead of using them one
buries them underground or hoards them for long, he does opperssion to them and make inoperative the
object of God. These gold and silver have not been created specially for Zaid or Amir but as medium for
exchange of things. They are however not been created for food but for getting food. There is writing
of God on everything without words. God says (in 9 : 34Q)-Those who hoard up gold and silver and do not
spend in the way of God give them news of grievous punishment.
Gold and silver used as utensils. If anybody uses gold and silver for utensils, reservoirs and cups or
for anything else like these, acts contrary to the object for which these are created and is ungrateful
to God and he commits sins. His condition is worse than that of the man who keeps them buried, Cups can
84 PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
of iron or copper but they have no value of exchange and all things cannot be purchased through their
medium. For this purpose gold and silver have been created. For this reason, the Prophet said: He who
drinks in cup of gold and silver, enkindles as it were the fire of Hell in his belly.
Gold and silver used as bargain of interest : He who opens the business of purchase and sale of gold
and silver in order to earn profit or in other words to take usury and interest, will be working
against the plan and object of God and therefore will commit sin. He is ungrateful to the gift of God
as these two things have not been created for purchase and sale but as mediums to get necessary things.
When there is business of the same kind of things, there is action against the will of God. The plan of
these two thing in like the place of a word in a sentence or the place of a
mirror in colours. So ex.ha^exchange of gold u and a i silver r four r
w f goigold and
silver has got no meaning. If the object be hoarding, it will be an act of opperssion.
Question: Why is it that gold can be purchased legally in exchange of silver?
Answer : The object of gold is separate from that of silver, as a piece of gold can be exchanged for
several pieces of silver, just as, a rupee can be exchanged for one hundred paisa by which many small
things can be purchased. If it is prohibited, things cannot be easily purchased or sold. One rupee can
be exchanged for another rupee as nobody will be willing to do that without profit. but one rupee
cannot be exchanged for more than one rupee. The use of counterfeit coins is not lawful as an owner of
good coins will not be ready to receive counterfeit coins, even though the number of the latter is
greater. Barter system is not also lawful as the good and bad of it are the same.
Hoarding of food-stuffs is bad as they have been created for the upkeep of the body. If there is
hoarding business of these things for long the object for which food stuffs have been created is
frustrated. He who has got surplus food-stuff should transfer it to those who have got necessity for
them. He who wants food-stuff in exchange of the same kind of food-stuff cannot legally get it as he
has got no need of it. For this reason, Shariat cursed those who hoard up food stuff.
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 85
There are illustrations about the objects of the creation of gold, silver and food-stuff. So don't
misuse anything for which it has been created. God says : He who has been given wisdom has been given
abundant good-2: 269 Q. Those minds which are the store houses of temptations and playgrounds of the
devil cannot grasp the root-cause of God's object in creating a thing. For this, the Prophet said : Had
not the devil moved in the heart of man, they would have seen the sovereignty of God. When you have
understood this thing, you can guess whether your movements and actions are grateful or ungrateful as
there is nothing which is outside these two attributes.
OWNERSHIP OF LAND: Only God is the permanent owner of lands, as everything in heaven and earth belongs
to Him. So declares the Quran. How can a servant of God become the owner of a land when he cannot keep
himself under his control but his master controls him? It is true that every man has got necessity for
food and the earth is the dinning cloth of God. The people have been ordered to eat what is absolutely
necessary for them from the foods served on this dining cloth out of the food-stuffs grown by God in
the earth. The king has. spread dining cloth of food for his servants. If a servant takes a morsel of
food out of it and if another snatches it away from him, it is not allowed. The reason is not that the
former has become owner of the morsel as the hand which catches it and the person possessing the hand
are both servants, but when he has got necessity of a morsel of food, he becomes possessor of it. This
is justice. Its peculiarity is first possession. This is true in case of all servants of God. No
servant has got any right to possess what is not necessary for his livelihood. So it is true that he
who amasses and hoards wealth for long or hoards up food stuffs beyond his necessity is an oppressor
and belongs to those persons who are condemned by God in the following verse : Those who hoard up gold
and silver and do not spend in the way of God. Give them news of grievous chastisement. Way of God
means performance of duties towards God which means spending wealth for the servants of God who are in
need and wants. To hoard up food-stuff, in godowns after snatching them from the needy people is a
heinous offence. After meeting one's own necessity, the surplus wealth should be distributed among the
needy and the destitutes. To this effect, the Quran says : They ask you about spending. Tell what is in
86 PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 87
The above view is opposed to open Shariat or religious law now prevalent in the society, as it is
difficult to asertain the limit of necessity. A certain amount of wealth may meet one's necessity but
it does not meet the necessity of another. So necessity differs in different persons. Therefore it is
said to be lawful for the common people to hoard up if Zakat is paid, but the Zakat giver is said to be
miser according to the above view. So only payment of Zakat is not the limit of charity, as the Quran
says : If He wants this from you and then compels you, you would be miser-47: 37 Q. The thing which has
got no wrong is justice. It is also justice for a servant not to take beyond what is necessary for him
in his walk of worldly pursuits from the wealth of the gifts of God. Every servant of God is a
sojourner to reach the Almighty by using a conveyance. He who takes excessive load in his journey and
does not give his fellow travellers what is necessary for them is an oppression. He gives up justice
and works opposed to the plan and purpose of God and thus exposes ungratefulness for the gifts of God
bestowed on him. It has been well established by the Quran, Hadis and good conscience that the thing in
excess of the necessity of a traveller to God will come as a burden or punishment on him both in the
world and in the next. So God says : There are very few among My servants who are grateful. The devil
was pleased to hear this verse : You will not find most of them grateful. Those who do not understand
the basic and subtle meaning of these verses do not understand their implications.
Question: By this argument, it is understood that in everything there is an object and plan and man's
action is either an instrument to fulfill that object or is opposed to it and that any action which
leads to God's plan is gratefulness and any action which goes against it is ungratefulness. But these
actions of men are in fact the actions of God as they cannot move without the will of God. When man
have got no freedom of will apart from the will of God is there any meaning of their being grateful or
Answer: The answer is buried in the deep ocean of spiritual knowledge. He who can understand the
language of birds can understand it. There is an special attribute of God cut of which new creations
come into being in the world. That is an attribute which cannot be seen by the eye of language and
there is no such
word as can explain that attribute of God. Intelligence is then lost just as a bat becomes blind before
the scorching rays of the sun. It does not occur because of any defect in the sun but it does occur
owing to the weakness of sight of the bat. Similarly those whose eye of knowledge has been opened for
seeing the superb beauty of God, can appreciate it. They term it as extraordinary power. Man has been
divided into two classes. The original decree is so powerful on one class that they are bound to do
what has been decreed and extraordinary power is so great on another class that it carries them to the
highest pinnacle of glory. That state of mind is called contentment. The condition of one who does not
fulfill that object is called displeasure. A certain king removed the dirtiness of a slave and adorned
him with fine and good dress and then said to the slave: How beautiful you are. How good is your dress.
In fact the king is beautiful and for the beauty of the slave the king is to henraised_ By praising the
slave he is praising himself.
Similar is the case of actions in the record of fate. The causes are guided by God but not by the
wishes of men. He is not to be asked why He does it, but the people will be asked for their actions.
The Prophet said: When fate is mentioned, refrain from talking of it. To learn swimming is possible but
he who walks upon water does not require training in swimming. The latter person can understand it. For
this reason, the Prophet was asked: How could the Prophet Jesus walk over water? He 'replied: Had his
sure faith increased more he could have walked through the air.
Take an illustration. A certain king required the services of two men - one to give him drink of wine
and another to act as sweeper in his house. The former is beautiful and good and the latter is ugly and
bad. The sweeper can not say: To give drink of wine to the king is my duty. The king himself -did
justice in enjoying the good man in superior work and the had man in inferior work. Similarly your
knowledge, your strength, your power, your actions and movements are all His works and He divided the
management in the best possible manner. Actions of man flow from them. But you see that you are free to
do whatever you like and that the spiritual and unseen world has got no hand in the matter. If you
entertain such idea in your mind, you become just like a boy who looks to the movement of toys and
praises the toys for their movements. The man who makes the
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toys move stays behind the screen outside the view of the boy who sees that the toys dance, stand and
sit. The wise man understands that the toys are only plays of the real man behind the screen. Similar
is the case with the people of the world who are like toys before the wise or before those who are
beloved of God. They can see the thin thread that is conjoined to men of the work and that is not
visible to the naked eye.
Then the threads have been placed in the hands of their angels who move the heaven and the angels
receive orders from the Almighty. God says: There is provision for you in the sky and what you have
been given promise. God says: He created the seven heavens and the earth like them and He sends affairs
between them that you may know that God is Powerful over all things and that His knowledge encompasses
everything - 65: 12 Q. Hazrat Ibn Abbas says of the wise men among whom He sends down orders as
mentioned on the above verse. He also said: If I disclose what I know of this verse, you will throw
stones at me.
Now the meaning of gratefulness is that it makes His plan perfected by the actions of men. He who is
grateful to God by doing good works is dear to God. The angels are most dear to Him as there is order
in them. Among them there is an angel named Israfil who is dearest to God and through whom God
corrected the prophets. In this world, the prophets are dearest to God, through whom God showed the
right path to men. Of all the Prophets, the Prophet Muhammad has been given the highest rank as through
him Islam was made perfect and as he is the seal of the prophets. Next to the Prophets are the learned
men who are the heirs of the Prophets as they are themselves pious and they showed the people the paths
of piety and truth. Next is the rank of the just rulers as they keep themselves busy in doing good and
justice to the people. Except those, all the people are shepherds.
MODES OF EXPRESSING GRATEFULNESS: Gratefulness is expressed for gifts. It is impossible to recount the
number of gifts of God on man. God says: If you count the gifts of God, you won't be able to count them
-16 :18Q. We shall now describe the modes of expression of gratefulness.
Know, 0 dear readers, that every good, taste, fortune or every desired thing is called gift but true
gift is fortune in the next world and without this gift of other things is misnomer. The
worldly gift which does not help the hereafter cannot be called gift.
(1) First division of next worldly fortune. Though one, it has got several divisions. (1) What is
beneficial both in this world and the next knowledge and good conduct. (2) What is injurious in both
the worlds - ignorance and bad conduct. (3) What is beneficial in this world but injurious in the
here-after-pleasure of temptation, (4) what is injurious in this world, but beneficial in the
here-after-control of passions, temptations and opposition to vain desires. What is beneficial both in
the world and the next is truly gift - knowledge and good conduct. What is injurious in both the worlds
is misfortune. What is beneficial in this world but injurious in the hereafter is a danger to a man of
insight but gift to a blind man. He is like a hungry man. He sees honey mixed with poison as a gift
because he is ignorant. When he comes to know of poison he learns that he is being guided to a danger.
What is injurious in this world but beneficial in the hereafter is a valuable gift to a wise man, but a
danger to an ignorant man. it is just like that medicine which is distasteful but its result is good. A
boy will think it a danger, but a wise man will take it as fortune. A father gives good education to
his son though his mother often does not like it.
(2) Second Division: The second division of getting next worldly fortune is as follows. The things of
the world remain mixed with good and evil. What is necessary out of wealth, children, relatives, name
and fame is beneficial but enormous wealth and world wide name and fame are not good. There are many
pious men who get benefit from lawful wealth and there are people who have got little wealth which does
(3) Third division: Some gifts are enjoyable in the world but are causes of sufferings in the next
world. The next worldly fortune is divided into three classes. The first class of good things are
generally dear as they are sought for themselves. The second class of good things are sought for other
purposes and not for themselves such as gold and silver. They are loved as through their medium all
things of enjoyments can be purchased. This is like his love for his king. In his love for his king, he
loves his messenger, but he loves his messenger so much that even he forgets his love for the king.
This is foolishness to the extreme. The third class of good things are such gifts which are sought for
PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 91
themselves and for others, such as health and safety. The cause of these gifts is that by their help
one can remember God.
(4) Fourth division: The good works of the next worldly fortune are divided into three classes - (1)
beneficial. (2) enjoyable and (3) beautiful. The things which are profitable in the next world is
beneficial. The things which give enjoyment at present is enjoyable. The things which are good in all
circumstances are beautiful. The injurious things are of 3 kinds - injurious, heinous and troublesome.
(5) Fifth division: Every pleasure giving thing may be called a gift. There are three kinds of
pleasures of men - (1) pleasure of knowledge, (2) bodily pleasure which is connected with some animals
(3) and the pleasure which is connected with all animals. The pleasure that is gained by knowledge
cannot be gained by the other organs of body except by soul. The pleasure of learning cannot be gained
except by the learned Nature does not get fatigued with the acquisition of knowledge. The best benefit
of learning is that it does not require any guard but wealth requires it. The more you spend learning,
the more it increases, but the more you spend wealth the more it decreases. Learning guards you but you
guard riches. Wealth may be stolen, but learning cannot be stolen. The learned live in peace but the
rich live in fear: Learning is always beneficial but wealth sometimes leads to salvation and sometimes
to destruction. For this reason, God in some places in the Quran termed wealth as Khair or good. Some
people do not find pleasure in learning because they have got disease in their hearts. They are like
the diseased man who does not get the taste of honey and considers it as bitter. Those who get no
pleasure in learning and knowledge are divided into three classes - (1) those whose hearts have not
increased like those of boys (2) those whose hearts have become dead by constantly following their
passions and low desires. (3) those whose hearts are diseased for following their passions. God says:
There are diseases in their hearts - 2: 10 Q. From this it appears that there is disease in intellect.
God says: To warn those who are alive. Those whose hearts have been dead have been told of in this
verse. He whose body is alive but heart is dead is dead to God, though he is alive to the ignorant
people. For this reason, the martyrs are alive before their Lord and they are given provision. Though
their bodies are dead they are alive.
The second kind of pleasure of men lies in some matters such as supremacy, victory etc. The third kind
of pleasure all animals enjoy in some matters - food, drink and sexual cohabitation. Most of the people
consider these things as the most pleasure giving, but this pleasure is worst of all pleasures. The
lower animals also feel these pleasures in these things just like men. This world means the physical
world and the next world means the spiritual and unseen world. This material world follows the
spiritual work as the picture in the mirror follows the picture of one who sees in the mirror. Though
the picture in the mirror is the exact second picture, but it is the first picture from the point of
view of your seeing as you have not seen your picture, and you have seen your picture first in the
mirror and you can recognise it after you have seen it. The picture in the mirror stands as your
prototype. So from the point of view of recognition, what remains behind comes forward and the thing
which comes forward stays behind. Similarly the spiritual and unseen world is the second picture of
this material world. There are such men who get pictures by receiving such admonition. If they see a
thing of the spiritual world, that becomes the cause of their admonition. For this reason, God says: 0
those having eyes, take admonition. There are also such man whose eye-sight is blind and who does not
accept admonition and remains confined in this material world. Soon the door of Hell will be opened up
for him and the fire will rise upon his heart. There is screen between his heart and the fire. When the
screen will be lifted by the event of death, the fire will encompass him. Hell-fire is such a thing
which can be felt by such thing as can be called knowledge of certainly or faith out of knowledge.
Sometimes it can be seen by such thing which can be called certainty of eye or faith arising out of
sight. The latter cannot be attained except in the next world, but the former can be felt in this
world. The man who has been granted light of perfect faith gets such grace. For this reason, God says:
Had you felt certainly arising out of knowledge, you would have certainly seen the fire of Hell (in
this world)-102 :6.
(6) Sixth Divison is the combination of all gifts. Know, 0 dear readers, that gifts are of two
kinds-one kind is sought for its own sake and another kind is sought for the desired object. Next
worldly bliss is the desired object. It has got four divisions - (1) everlasting bliss which has got no
end, (2) everlasting bliss which has got no trouble, (3) perfect knowledge which has got no ignorance
92 PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
full pleasure which has got no want. These four things are called real gifts. For this reason, the
Prophet said:. There is no bliss except the bliss of the hereafter. This was uttered by the Prophet to
console his companions when they were digging the trench at the battle of the Allies - He recited it at
several other times also.
FOUR ITEMS OF FULL BLISS: There are four principal basic things of attaing full bliss - (1) The things
which are connected with soul and which are special and near such as one's own good. (2) the things
which are connected with body, such as physical health, (3) the things which have got no connection
with body though near it, such as wealth, family members, relatives and (4) the things which unite the
attributes of soul and earn them for soul, such as grace, guidance. These are the four items of
(1) First basic thing of bliss: The things which are connected with soul and special and near are
acquired by good conduct and with the extension of branches of faith. Knowledge of faith is of two
kinds - I spiritual knowledge and worldly knowledge. Knowledge of the attributes of God, His angels and
His apostles is spiritual knowledge. The worldly knowledge is of two kinds - to give up necessity of
greed and anger called self-control and to proceed keeping justice and righteousness after abstaining
from the urge of greed. God says: Don't exceed in measurement and establish the scale of justice and
don't decrease in measurement - 55 : 9Q. Full justice is such a state of moderation which does not
exceed the limit, nor reduces it and their balance is even.
FOUR THINGS DRAW NEAR GOD+There are four things which bring a man near God - (1) spiritual knowledge,
(2) knowledge of duties, (3) self-control, (4) and justice. Without physical bliss, they do not become
perfect and this is again of four kinds-(1) health, (2) strength, (3) beauty and (4) long life. These
four gifts again do not become perfect without things beneficial to body which are again of 4 kinds
-(1) wealth, (2) family members, (3) name and fame and (4) relatives. These are also not beneficial
unless the followings are not adopted -(1) guidance, (2) injunctions of God, (3) efforts and (4) God's
help. There are therefore sixteen gifts in total and basically they are of four kinds which are
interconnected and which are absolutely necessary. What is necessary for the next worldly fortune is
faith and good conduct and there is no alternative for men but acquisition of these attributes by
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 93
there is nothing for man but what he strives for. There is no fortune for man in the next world without
acquisition of merits in this world. So for acquisition of attributes of soul, knowledge of the above
things is necessary. In order to acquire purity of character, physical health along with we,..ith,
honour and relatives is necessary.
QuestAW: What is the reason that wealth, honour, relatives and name aA fame are necessary for a man to
get happiness in the next world?
Answer: These are like the wings of a bird to fly to the destination.
(1) Wealth: A poor man is sometimes unable to gain perfection. He is just like a warrior who runs to
fight without arms or like a bird of prey which roams to catch prey without wings. For this reason, the
Prophet said: How good is lawful wealth for a pious man. He also said: How good is the help of wealth
for God-fear? Why will it not be good when a great deal of time is spent in search of wealth, dress,
house and subsistence unless there is wealth. Many troubles keep such a man away from Zikr and Fikr. He
is also deprived of the merits of pilgrimage, Zakat and charities. A certain pious man was asked: Which
is the thing called gift? He replied: Wealth, as a poor man has got no happiness. He was again asked
about gifts. The pious man said: Security is also a gift as a fearful man has got no rest. He was again
asked: What are the other gifts? He said: Peace arising out of self-control as a patient has got no
happiness. He was again asked: What are the other gifts? He said: Youth, as there is no happiness in
old age? These are the gifts which help towards the gifts of the next world. For this reason, the
Prophet said: If one gets up at dawn with health of body, mind free from fear and with daily provision,
he acquires as it were the whole world.'
(2) Children, wives and members of family: It is nott secret how useful are the wives and children. The
Prophet said about wife: A religions wife is a help towards religion. He said regarding children: When
a man dies, all his pious acts are closed up except three things - a pious issue who prays for him etc.
We have mentioned this usefulness of children and other things in the chapter of marriage and it should
not be repeated here.
94 PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
(3) Relatives: They add to the strength of a pious man. If he has no such relatives, his works increase
and he gets no leisure in religious services.
(4) Name, fame and influence: These are means to remove dishonour and disgrace. In their absence, the
enemies may give him trouble and oppressors may create trouble for him in his works and thus these
things may keep away his mind from the remembrance of God. The mind of a believer is his principal
thing. So honour and influence may remove these things from a man. God says: Had God not removed one
party by another party, the world would have been destroyed - 2 : 2518. Influence has got no meaning
unless the opinion of the people are brought under control.
Question: What gift is therein the honour of relatives?
Answer: The Prophet said: The leaders are from the Quraish. For this reason, the Prophet was born in
the most respectable family out of the families of the children of Adam. The Prophet said: Choose for
your semen women of your equal ranks. He also said: Give up impure green tree. The people asked him.
What is impure green tree? He said: A beautiful woman of bad family. A woman of good family is gift.
Question: What is the meaning of physical gift?
Answer: It means health of body and long life, as without them, knowledge and action donot become
perfect. The Prophet said: To spend the whole time in divine service is a great fortune. Beauty is also
a gift. It is useful for the next world for two reasons - (1) an ugly appearance is reprehensible to
nature. The application of a beautiful man is acceptable and its influence falls in the minds of men.
So it is a strength which can help towards God. The pious men said that face and eyes are mirrors of
mind. They also said: A broad forehead tells what is in mind. Once Caliph Mamun cut off the name of an
ugly man from the list of soldiers. When soul shines, appearance becomes bright. The Prophet said: Seek
good from those having beautiful face. Hazrat Omar said : When you send messengers, search for those
having good appearance and good men. The jurists said that if for the purpose of Imamate in prayer two
men are equal in qualities, he who has got better appearance shall be Imam. God says : He gave him
increase in knowledge and body.
Question :God says : There are your enemies in your wives and children. So beware of them-64: 14. God
says : Your wealth and children are a trial-64: 15. So why has not God treated them and wealth as
Answer: Wealth has got benefits as well as dangers, It is like a snake which has got jewel in its
forehead as well as poison. The snake-man saves himself from its poison and takes out its jewel from
it. Who knows how to take its jewel, snake is a good thing for, him, but it is dangerous to others who
catch it. He who dives in ocean to collets jewels and emeralds from its bottom knows how to save
himself. He who does not know the modes of diving and swimming will destroy himself. Similar is the
case with wealth. To him who knows its use, it is a gift and to him who misuse it, it is a danger. For
the above reason, God termed wealth as Khair or a good thing, Similar is the case with name, fame,
honour, wives, children and relatives.
Every man is like a boy and wealth is like a snake and the Prophets are like the experienced
snake-charmers. What can not do any harm to an experienced snake-charmer can do harm to a boy. So the
people are like boys under the care of the Prophets. The Prophet said : I am to you just as a father to
his son. The Prophet also said: You are roaming around the fire like insects and I am catching hold of
your loins to save you.' Their responsibility to save their followers from destruction is great as they
were not sent but for this purpose. Nobody has got any share in excess of what is necessary for him,
although there is no sin in keeping excess wealth. Don't keep yourself confined in excess wealth,
rather spend jt, as there is poison in hoarding it and there is jewel in spending it. When wealth is
taken according to needs and excess wealth is spent, it is not reprehensible. Every traveller should
take in his journey what is necessary for him and not overload himself. Similar is the case with a man
walking in the path of religion. The Prophet said : Any man among you should keep such worldly wealth
which a man in journey takes with himself.' The pious man spend their excess wealth in the way of God.
The Prophet once said that the rich man will enter paradise with great difficulty. Then his companion
Abdur Rahman- b-Auf sought his permission to gift away all his wealth to which he gave permission.
Gabriel then came down and said : Tell him to spend his wealth for giving food to the poor, clothes to
those who have got no cloth and to entertain guests.
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES
96 PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV GUIDANCE : There are three stages of guidance:
1. The first stage of guidance is to know the paths of good and bad, This is seen from the following
verse : I have showed him two him two paths. God says : I gave guidance to the people of Samud but they
liked misguidance in place of guidance-41: 17 Q. The religious scriptures, the apostles and power of
wisdom are the materials of this guidance and jealousy. pride, attachment to the world are the
obstacles of this guidance. God says : It does not make the eye sight blind, but it makes blind the
hearts which are in the breasts. The causes which make the hearts blind are love for the world and
habits. God says: They say, shall we follow a man among us? This ignorance leads the people to
2. The second stage of guidance is the guidance through
efforts of special people. This comes after the advent of general
guidance. God leads a servant from one condition to another. This comes as a result of continued
efforts. God says: I will surely show My paths to those who strive hard for My cause - 29: 69Q. In
another verse, He says: God gives increased guidance to those who walk in the paths of guidance-47:17.
3. The third stage of guidance comes after the second. It is a kind of light which rises in the world
of prophethood and sainthood after perfection of character and conduct and by which a man can reach to
such a world to which he cannot reach by intellect and 'wisdom and which is not possible to attain by
efforts learning and wisdom. This is the highest stage of guidance. The other kinds of guidance are
only preliminaries and screens. God says regarding this guidance: Say, God's guidance is the real
guidance - 2 : 12Q. He named it a real life in the following verse: I brought one back to life who was
dead and granted him a light with the help of which he walks amongst men - 6 :122Q. God says: He whose
breast God has expanded is on light from Him-39:22.
WILL TO WALK IN PATHS OF GUIDANCE: This will arises out of mind. God says: I have given (Rushd) will to
walk on good path to Abraham and I am congnisant of it - 21 : 51Q. So Rushd means such a guidance which
leads to good fortune and gives incentive towards that. To know the modes of acquisition of fortune is
called Rushd. He who finds guidance may not find
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 97
Rushd or to move according to that guidance. So Rushd is better than guidance.
Tasdid: are efforts with body and mind to reach the cherished goal. So guidance gives clue to true
path. Rushd generates strong will to tread on it and Tasdid is efforts to,put that will into action by
moving the bodily organs.
Ta'yeed is help from unseen quarters. It is the combination of all the above attributes. God says: I
helped him with the Holy Spirit-2: 86.
The above gifts are the elements of the next world. When these qualities are united in a man, God gives
him additional gifts of clear understanding, attractive ear, fore-sight and humble heart and wips out
what prevents him from religion and gives him such honour which saves him from the oppressions of the
ignorant. Each of these four items gives rise to sixteen virtues which also give rise to other
attributes. Thus there grows a chain of help and at last it falls upon the ultimate cause (God).
GOD'S INNUMERABLE GIFTS: Know, 0 dear readers that God created inanimate objects, such as stone, iron,
copper and other mineral substances. They have got no growth and do not take food. Plants are more
perfect than mineral substances as there is a kind of strength in them with which they draw juice from
the earth through their principal arteries. When they gain strength, other arteries come out of them.
But they cannot move and search for food. Animals are therefore more perfect than plants. Among
animals, man has got the highest perfection for the following reasons.
SENSATION OF TOUCH: When fire touches him, he flees away from it. This is the first attribute of
animals without which they cannot go on. Nose has been created for man with which he takes smell. Then
eyes have been created for-him-to-see things near an distant and ears to hear and-tongue to taste.
These things would not have be_ en--st iicient without the strength of perceptionjn_thi~"front portion
of head. By its help, it is known whiehThing is bitter and which is sweet. Without it eyes would have
seen a thing as yellow. Then you have been given intellect with the help of which you can understand
everything. You can understand whether, a thing is beneficial or injurious at present and in future.
The greatest intellect is Knowledge about God, His
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Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 99
wonderful creations and his workings in the universe. Your five organs then work as police on behalf of
the king-soul. Each of them has been assigned a special function to perform news of colour, voice,
smell, taste, cold, heat and other attributes. These are the gifts on you arranged in order. Sight is a
power and eye is its instrument. There are ten different screens in the eye circle, some are open, some
are secret and some secret screens are woven like the spider's net. Some screens are dried, some are
wet, some are white like egg and some screens are like ice. The form, mode, length and breadth of each
screen of eye are different. If any attribute of a screen is mixed with that of another eye sight
becomes curbed. This is true of only one organ. Now guess the wonderful creation of ear, nose and other
GREED AND WILL: There are also different kinds of gifts in the creation of greed and will. There are
many diseased men who do not take beneficial food owing to lack of greed. Things of greed are sought
for and reprehensible things are hated. So God created in you greed for food and made it strong in you.
It urges you to take food and thereby you remain alive. That gives rise in :.you sexual passion which
preserves dynasty. You will be struck with wonder if you think and ponder how He created uterus, how a
foetus comes into being out of mixture of the blood of menses and semen, how males and females are
created, how semen comes out from the back of a male and mixes with the ovary of a female, how it
becomes a lump of flesh, how head, hand, feet, belly, back and other organs of the body are formed. All
these are gifts of God.
ANGER: Greed is not alone sufficient for you and many injurious things are coming to you from all
around. Therefore anger has been created in order to drive them off. It is not alone sufficient for
future benefit and for that will has been created. It is guided by knowledge and intellect.
INSTRUMENTS OF STRENGTH AND MOVEMENTS: The following are the instruments which give strength to the
body as a result of which the different organs have got
Two Hands: Two hands are long and fit for catching hold of things. There are many sinews, joints and
other technicalities by which the hand may be spread and bent at will. Then the fingers
have been created with a plan with the thumb at the end. If the fingers would have been joined
together, your necessities would not have been met.
Mouth: You lift your food with your hands and put it in your mouth. Had it not been the case, you would
not have lived. It is the medium to send food to the stomach. In order to chew food, teeth have been
created and the teeth of upper jaw have been placed upon those of the lower jaw for the purpose of
crushing food. There are teeth for crushing and teeth for cutting.
Tongue takes the food on all sides and places it under teeth for crushing. Then look to your saliva
which gives water to the food when it is dry. Behind this tongue, there is a fountain of water out of
which saliva comes and helps wetting. Then look to the wind pipe and the throat, how they help the food
to reach the
Stomach has got a peculiar shape and form. The gas which is produced by the internal organs helps
cooking of food in the stomach and digestion. To he right side of stomach is liver and to its left
spleen and before it there is the sheet of fat and behind it is the flesh of backbone. Gas arising out
of them enters the stomach for which food is digested and such a juice comes out of it as becomes fit
to enter the veins of blood. That becomes then like barley water. There are many sinews of liver which
have got many mouths. Food enters them. It is made of a mixture of blood and looks like a clot of
blood. God created spleen and gall bladder and for each expanded mouth upto liver has been created.
Gall bladder draws out the yellow refuge and spleen takes out oily black things and as a result pure
blood remains. Then God created the glands of urine which have got long necks towards the liver. God
takes out sinews from the liver and spreads them throughout the body, some of them are secret and some
open. Therein there runs pure blood which reaches the entire body. There are veins and sub-veins just
like the leaves of a tree. If there is something wrong in gall bladder and it can not draw out the
refuge, blood become impure and the result is the disease of jaundice, erysipelas etc. If the spleen is
diseased, it can not draw out black refuge and as a result there grows the disease of leprosy,
elephantiasis etc. When liquid cannot go towards throat, there grows the disease of dropsy. Then you
can imagine how wonderful is the creation of human body.
100 PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
Therefore look to the gifts of God and be grateful to Him for all that you have got from Him.
THE SEAT OF LIFE IS HEART: Life is like the fire of a lamp and heart is the seat of that lamp. The
black blood in heart is like the thread of lamp and the food of the thread is oil. So the life.
strength that runs through the body is like the light of a lamp in a house. When the oil of the lamp
finishes, the lamp of life extinguishes. This occurs according to the plan and purpose of God. This
life is a material thing but soul which God termed in His verse as Ruh is a spiritual thing which
intellect cannot grasp. But it can be explained by high celestial light which is more honourable than
intellect. A boy can understand things of his ideas but he cannot understand the objects which can be
grasped by intellect as he is placed then in the lower stage. An elderly man can understand things of
intellect, but he cannot understand what is behind intellect as he has not reached the highest stage
which is gained by the light of certain and sure faith. So the pious men said that he who cannot know
himself cannot know God. About this soul, God says: They ask you about soul. Say it is from the order
of God. God says: 0 satisfied soul, return to your Lord, well pleased with Him and well pleasing
BASIC GIFT OF FOOD: There are many items of food and God's gift regarding food are innumerable. Food is
of three kinds- vegetables, fruits and crops. We shall discuss here about crops and that is the
principal food. We shall take up the seed of wheat. God says: I shower rain and split up the earth and
grow therein seeds, grape seeds, seeds of creepers and seeds of olive trees. To grow them, air is
necessary and so for this purpose soft cultivated land is necessary, so that air may enter therein, God
says: Isend strong wind producing abundant rain. When water is necessary, God created canals, seas,
oceans and fountains and sends winds to carry water to the fields.
Now look to the sun and the moon. He made them subservient and see how the sun makes the earth warm
inspite of its great distance and thereby crops and fruits enjoy it, how by the help of the moon fruits
become ripe and assume colour and hue. For this reason, if any tree is in shadow, it cannot grow for
want of the rays of the sun and light of the moon. When you sleep under the sky, you will suffer from
cold for its coolness. So the moon gives moisture to the crops and fruits. There is also a
Vol-IV. THE BOOK OF, CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 101
purpose for the creation of each star in the sky. God instructs us to say: 0 our Lord, you have not
created this in vain. He also says: 'I have not created the heavens and the earth and what is between
them out of sports.' The world is like a man and everything in the world is like the organs of the
body. As all the organs of the body help your body, so everything in the world help the world.
Everything in the word is the workmanship of God and as such God can be well understood from His
wonderful creations. So food is perfected by the sun, moon, water, wind, star etc.
TRANSPORTATION OF FOOD: All the foods cannot be obtained from the same place. So God created merchants
who travel all over the world and gather them according to the needs of a particular country. God made
the love of wealth strong over them and for that they undertake arduous and hazardous journey to gather
foodstuffs. In this act, sometimes boats are sunk and wealth is looted by robbers. So God taught them
how to make boats and ships.
PURIFICATION OF FOOD STUFFS: Look to a piece of bread and look to what elements are necessary for
getting a bread. At first field is cultivated and for that cows, bullocks and buffaloes and ploughing
machines are necessary. Then weeds are plucked out and then seeds are sown. Then crops are reaped and
thrashed out. Then bread is prepared when wheats are crushed and made powders. For this, many men,
machines, irons, woods are necessary.
GIFT OF CREATION OF ANGELS: It has been stated that the angels come down to correct the Prophets and to
show them the paths of guidance and to take revelations to them from God. They are divided into three
classes - (1) angels of the earth, (2) angels of heaven and (3) angels for carrying the Divine Throne.
So look how God engaged the angels for procuring food for you and for your guidance. For every organ of
yours, rather for every part of a tree, at least seven angels has been entrusted. It varies from seven
to one hundred. They supply food to each vein and sinew as food does not move by itself but it is taken
from one place to another by angels. Each angel has been assigned a function of his own and none
interfers with the functions of another. The angels of sky help the angels of the earth and the angels
of Throne help the angels of the sky. Above all, the Almighty helps them all.
102 PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 103
Question: Why is one angel not sufficient for all works?
Answer: Man is different from angel. There is not a single angel who possesses more than one quality.
Each one of them has been assigned a special work. The following verse gives such an indication: There
is none of us but for whom there is not an assigned work.' For this reason, there is no hatred, rancour
or quarrel in them. Their works is like the work of our five organs. Eye is to see but not to hear.
Nose is to take smell and not to hear. Angels are prone to divine service unlike a man who is prone to
good and bad. They obey what God orders them to do and they glorify God night and day. Some of them
always are engaged in bow, some in prostration some in standing. There is no rest in their works. They
are gifts of God for men.
God says to men: 'Give up open and secret sins.' Man is not always cognisant of his secret sins-hatred,
doing injury to others etc.
There are two gifts in each breath, one gift is that when a man gives out a breath, the burnt gas in
heart comes out. If it does not come out he would be ruined. In taking breath, the life of air is
si6ved up in heart. If breath is chocked up, his heart is burnt because of cutting of the life of air.
In each of 24 hours, a man breaths one thousand times. There are ten moments in each breath. On account
of this thousands of gifts come to your body in each moment. Now imagine what innumerable gifts come
CAUSES OF MAN'S BEING UNGRATEFUL: Man cannot express gratefulness to God as he is not cognisant of
God's gifts owing to his ignorance. He thinks that recitation of all praises due to God by tongue is
sufficient to express gratefulness. He does not know that if he does his works according to the
injunctions of God and if he fulfils the purpose of a thing for which it is created, he will be
expressing gratefulness for the thing.
The first cause of his being ungrateful is that he does not consider some gifts as gifts as all are
enjoying those gifts in common just as air water fire. If there is want of air for a moment, all will
be destroyed. He who has got eye-sight will not be seen to express gratefulness for his eye-sight. When
he becomes blind and then gets eye-sight, he expresses gratefulness. Once a man
complained to a wise man of his poverty and expressed sorrows. The wise man asked him: Will you like to
be blind if you get 10,000 dirhams? He replied: I don't like to be blind. He again asked him: Will you
like to become dumb in exchange of ten thousand dirhams? He said: Never. He asked him again: Will you
like that your two hands and feet are cut in exchange of 20 thousand dirhams? He said: Never. He asked
him: Will you like that you become mad in exchange of ten thousand dirhams? He said: Never. The pious
man said: Should you not feel ashamed to your Creator that He has given you a gift of fifty thousand
dirhams but yet you are not expressing gratefulness for them to Him?
It has been narrated that a learned man was hard pressed with poverty. He had not an inch of land. One
night he dreamt that a man was saying to him: Do you like that you get a thousand dirhams and in
exchange you forget the chapter An'am of the Quran? He said: Never. He again asked him: Do you like
that you forget the chapter Cow in exchange of a thousand dirhams? He said: Never. Then he asked him
thus of several chapters and he replied the same. Then he said: You have got profit of one lac dinars
yet you are complaining. When he got up from sleep, he was pleased and his grievances vanished away.
The saint Samad went to a certain Caliph with a pot when he was drinking water in a glass. The Caliph
said to him: Give me advice. The saint Samad said: If you are not given a sip of drink in exchange of
your kingdom when you are thirsty, will you not spend all your resources to get it? The Caliph 'said:
Surely, I would spend everything. The saint said: If it is not given to you inspite of your kingdom,
will you not give up your kingdom? The Caliph said: I will surely do it. The saint said: In that case,
don't remain content with your kingdom, because is not equal even to a glass of water.
Three things are found in every man-intellect, conduct and knowledge. There is no such a man who is not
satisfied with his given intellect. He believes that he is the wisest man and prays little for more
intellect. Even he who has got no intellect is pleased with his position. So for his satisfaction he
should feel grateful to God. Regarding conduct, there is no such man who does not find fault with
others and for that he hates him. Regarding knowledge, there is no such man who has got no
104 PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 105
speciality regarding his secret thinking. He becomes ashamed if
the people come to know of it. About these three gifts, every man knows them God made some believers
and not unbelievers. He gave them life and not made them dead, made them men and not beasts, made them
males .and not females, made them healthy and not unhealthy, made them qualified and not guilty. It is
wonderful that man considers the gifts of God as insignificant as he looks to one who is superior to
him in wealth and does not look to one who is inferior to him and so does not consider God's gifts on
him as great. More wonderful it is that he looks towards one who is inferior to him in religion but not
to him who is superior.
For this reason, the Prophet said: He who looks to one who is inferior to him regarding worldly affairs
and look's to one who is superior to him in religious matters, is recorded by God as a patient and
grateful man. He who looks to one who is superior to him regarding worldly matters and inferior to him
in religious matters, is not recorded as a patient and grateful man. The Holy Prophet ;said: God does
not make one free from want who does not consider himself as above want even after getting signs from
God. It has been said with a look to the gift of learning. The Prophet said: Surely the Quran is a
valuable gift. There is no wealth after it. The Prophet said: If one who has been given the Quran by
God thinks that another man is more fortunate than him scoffs at the gifts of God. The Prophet said: He
who does not read the Quran it a melodious voice does not belong to us. He also said: Sure faith is a
sufficient gift. A certain pious man of yore said: God said in a certain revealed book: I make My gift
perfect on a servant when I make him free from want of three things - his having no necessity to go to
a king his having no necessity to go to a physician, his having no necessity of what his brother has
got. A certain poet said to this effect.
Your fixed provision must come to you,
your health and security must remain.
If you get up at dawn, being brother of sorrow. Your life will never be happy.
The Prophet said: He who gets up at dawn with peaceful mind, sound health and with the day's provision
in hand is given as it were the gifts of the whole world. The people in general do not express
gratefulness for these three things as well as for the
faith which will take them to the abode of peace. He whose insight has been opened does not remain
satisfied except with Marfat and sure faith even if he is given the wealth from the east to the west.
The saint Rabi-b Khashim was a man of very deep insight. He dug a grave within his house. He tied up
his food along with his neck and used to go to this grave and say; 0 Lord, take me back to the world
that I may do good works. Then he used to say: 0 Rabi, what you wanted has been given to you. Now
engage yourself in divine service and you will not be again sent back. This is the medicine for one who
remains aloof from expressing gratefulness. He should know that when gratefulness for a gift is not
express, the gift takes a back turn and does not come back again. For this reason, the saint
Fazil-b-Iyaz used to say: You should stick to the expression of gratefulness for your gifts. If gifts
go away from a nation they seldom come back to them. A certain sage said: Gift is like a wild beast.
Keep it confined by gratefulness. There is in Hadis that if gifts descend upon a man profusely, the
necessity of his expressing gratefulness becomes great. When he neglects them it prepares itself to go
from him. For this reason, God says: God does not change the condition of a people till they themselves
change it - 13:11.
PATIENCE OF GRATEFULNESS: From what has been described above, it is seen that every created thing is a
gift of God: It is also seen from this that there is really no existence of any danger and difficulty.
Question: If there is no danger and difficulty, what is the meaning of patience? If on the other hand,
there is danger and difficulty, what is the meaning of gratefulness? How can a man express gratefulness
in dangers and difficulties.
Answer: There are dangers and difficulties as there are gifts. If there are gifts, there arises the
necessity of dangers and difficulties. To get relief from a danger is a gift and to be deprived of a
gift is a danger. Gift is divided into two- limitless gifts and limited gifts. The example of limitless
gift is the attainment of the fortune of nearness to God in the next world or of faith and good conduct
and the things that help, these two things. The meaning of limited gift is that it is a gift from one
point of view and a danger from another point of view. For example, wealth is a gift as it helps
religion and it is also a danger as it acts contrary to
religion. Similar is the division of danger in to limitless danger and limited danger. The former is to
be away from God in the next world and the danger of infidelity, sin and bad conduct in this world.
Poverty, disease and other calamities, are limited dangers as they are in this world and not in the
next. Limitless gratefulness is necessary for limitless gifts. Though wealth is a gift, yet it becomes
a cause of destruction, so much so that the owner is even killed for its sake. Similar is the case with
So there is no gift in this world which has got no possibility of turning into danger. There is also no
calamity which has got no possibility of turning into gift. There are many men whose good lies in
poverty and disease. Had they been sound in health and solvent in riches, they would have grown
rebellious and naughty. God says: If God had given His servants abundant riches they would have surely
become rebellious in the earth. God says: Never, man is inordinate as he sees himself free from want.
The Prophet said: God saves his believing servant from this world though He loves him just as one of
you saves a patient from water. Such is the condition of sixteen kinds of gifts, such as wives,
children and relatives. There lies therein fortune and also misfortune. Knowledge is a gift but it
sometimes becomes a danger. At that time, ignorance is a bliss. When a man does not know the time of
his death, it is a bliss for him. Had he known it, his life would have been troublesome. Similar is the
case with the secret sins of a man. If his relatives would have known them, he would have fallen from
their estimation. There is good is not knowing some matters - the time of resurrection, the blessed
night, the auspicious moment of Jumma day.
Question: Patience and gratefulness are opposed to each other. How can they unite? Patience does not
come but in calamity and gratefulness does not come but in happiness.
Answer,. One thing becomes an object of happiness for one purpose and a cause of sorrow for another.
purpose. So patience is in calamity and gratefulness is in happiness. There are five matters in
poverty, disease, fear and worldly calamities. A wise man becomes grateful being pleased with them.
(1) First matter: In every calamity or disease, there is a greater calamity or disease. So for a lesser
calamity or disease, a man should be grateful.
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 107
(2) Second matter: is that the calamity or disease is in this world and not in his religion. Once a man
asked the saint Sahal Tastari: A thief stole all my household properties. He said: Be grateful to God.
If the devil entered your heart, he would have robbed your Tauhid. Which thing do you prefer? Jesus
Christ used to Pray: 0 God, don't give me trouble in my religion. Hazrat Omar said: God granted me four
gifts out of each calamity that befell on me. (1) It has not entered into my religion, (2) a greater
calamity has not come and (3) I have not been deprived of pleasure therein. (4)1 hoped for rewards
therein. He who has got power over you to inflict 100 stripes should get gratefulness from you if he
inflicts on you only ten stripes. Once a pious man was walking on the road. Some one threw a basketful
of refuges over his head. At once he expressed gratefulness to God and fell in prostration. Being asked
the reason of his prostration, he said: I was awaiting to be thrown into Hell fire but as only ashes
were thrown on me, I had prostration of gratefulness. God however gives respite to the unbelievers and
the great sinners. God says: I give them respite, so that their sins may increase.
(3) Third matter. There is no such sin of which punishment is not delayed upto the next world. The
calamities of this world reduce the punishment of the next world though the latter will last for long.
It is true that he who is given punishment for a sin in this world will not be punished in the next
world for the same for the second time as the Prophet said: When a man commits any sin and suffers for
that in the world, God is more honourable to inflict on him punishment for the second time for the
(4) Fourth matter. These disasters and calamities were recorded in original book of fate which must
(5) Fifth matter. The rewards of disasters and calamities are more than them. The worldly calamities
show path towards the next-world for two reasons:
First reason: It is that though medicine is bitter and distasteful, it is a bliss for a patient.
Similarly medicine to remove a sin is bitter but it is a bliss in the end. When he will see the"
rewards of calamities in the nex: world he will be grateful to God just as a boy when he attains age
expresses gratefulness-to a teacher for beating him and teaching him lessons of'good behaviour.
Calamities are just like bitter lessons to a,.man
PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
108 PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
walking in the path of God. Once the Prophet looked at the sky and laughed. On being asked the reason,
he said: I wonder at the fate of a believer. If He recorded happiness in his book of fate, he is
pleased with it and that is better for him. If He recorded sorrows for him, he is also pleased with it
and that is better for him.
Second reason. The root of destructive sins is attachment for the world, the root of the cause of
deception. If the gifts are not mixed with calamities, they lead the mind to enjoy the worldly
enjoyments and pleasures. Ultimately it becomes difficult for him to give them up. For this reason, the
Prophet said: This world is a prison for the believers and paradise for the unbelievers'. Calamities
are gifts from God. So one should remain satisfied with them, just as he remains satisfied with a
bitter medicine in hope of recovery. Every calamity in this world is like a bitter medicine which is
troublesome at present but a bliss in the long run. This world is like a palace of a king. People enter
it through the door of grace and come out of it through the door of grave. He who fixes his love for
the place of the world, falls into danger. Whoso's mind is aloof from that, it is a gift for him.
REWARD OF PATIENCE IN CALAMITIES: The Prophet said: God said: When I give calamity to the body of a
servant or to his wealth or children and he proceeds forward keeping patience, I shall feel ashamed in
setting up balance for him on the Resurrection Day. He also said: When a man falls into danger and says
according to the order of God 'We are for God and to him we shall return, 0 God, give me protection in
my calamity and leave for me good therefrom." God does for him accordingly. The Prophet said: God says:
The reward of one whose two eyes I have robbed is that he will live in My house forever and will look
constantly towards My face. It has been narrated that a man asked the Prophet of God: My wealth has
gone and body is diseased. The Prophet said: There is no good in one whose wealth has not gone and
whose body is not diseased. When God loves a servant, he examines him with a calamity. When he falls
into it, He keeps patience. The Prophet said: The rank of a man is not earned near God by any of his
actions till his body is not attacked with any disease which raises him to such a rank. Hazrat Khabbab
reported: We once came to the Prophet and saw him covered with a sheet of cloth under the shade of the
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 109
complained to him: 0 Prophet of God, don't you invoke God to help us? At this, his face became red with
rage and then he said: There were such men among your predecessors who were buried alive. There were
such men who were sewn to pieces by saws. Yet they did not turn back from religion. Hazrat Ali
reported: He who is confined by the king unjustly and as a result dies becomes a martyr. If as a result
of beating he dies, he becomes a martyr. The Prophet said: Not to complain of your troubles and of your
pains appertain to the glorification of God. Abu Darda'a reported: You are born for death, you erect
buildings for destruction, you covet for what will not last and give up what will last. Three
undesirable things are good for you - poverty, disease and death. The Prophet said: When God wishes
good of a man and establishes love with him, He sends down upon him troubles and calamities and
afflicts him with mishaps. When he prays to God, angels say: This voice is acquainted with us. When he
prays to Him second time and says 0 Lord God says, 0 My servant, I am present, fortune for you. I have
given you what is good for you and I have kept deposited with Me what is better for you. When there
will be resurrection, the pious will be brought and their actions will be weighed in the Balance - the
actions of those who prayed, those who paid Zakat, those who fasted and those who made pilgrimage. Then
those who were afflicted with calamities will be brought but their book of deeds will not be opened in
their presence. Rewards will be rained over them as calamities were thrown over them. Those who were
happy and safe in the world will see the high rank of those who suffered troubles and calamities and
say: Alas, how good it would have been if the flesh of our bodies were severed by scissors. For this
reason God says: Surely the patient will be given full rewards without account. Hazrat Ibn Abbas
reported that a Prophet complained to God and said: 0 Lord, a believer obeys you and gives up
disobedience to you but you keep the world distant from him and send down upon him troubles. The
unbeliever does not serve You dares against You and commits sins. You remove from him dangers and
difficulties and give him varieties of comforts and riches. What is its reason? God then revealed to
him: The people are Mine and dangers and calamities also are Mine. Everything glorifies My praise. When
I see the sins of a believer, I keep away the world from him and present to him dangers and
difficulties. I expiate his sins by the worldly
calamities and he becomes dear to me and I give him the rewards
PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 111
of his virtures. If an unbeliever does good in the world, I give him abundant wealth, remove from him
calamities and give him rewards of his good actions in the world. At last he comes to Me with sins and
I give him punishment for his sins. It has been reported that when the following verse was revealed: He
who does evil will get requital' of it - 4 :120Q. Hazrat Abu Bakr said: How can there be joy after this
verse? The Prophet said: 0 Abu Bakr, may God forgive you. Why, will you not fall ill? Will not
calamities fall on you? Will you not be sorry? These are the requital of your sins.
The Prophet said: When you see a man engrossed in sins and yet he gets his cherished objects, know then
that He is delaying his punishment. Then he recited this verse; When they forgot what they were
admonished with, I opened the door of everything for them till when they were engrossed in what they
were given, I caught them all of a sudden. Hazrat Ali reported: Shall I not inform you of such a verse
of the Quran which is greatly hoped for? They said: Inform us. Then he recited: Whatever calamity
befalls on you, it is on account of what your hands have wrought and He forgives much-42 :80Q.
The Prophet said: No person swallows sips dearer than two sips to God, s -p of anger which he swallows
with patience and sip of calamity over which he keeps patience. There is no drop dearer to God than two
drops - one drop of blood which is shed in the way of God and one drop of tears which falls in
prostration in the grim darkness of night and which nobody sees except God. There are two steps of a
servant very dear to God-one step taken for performing compulsory prayer and another step for keeping
the tie of blood.
Caliph Omar-b-Abdul Aziz said at the time of the death of his son: 0 dear son, my getting you in my
scale of virtues is dearer to me than your getting me in your scale of virtures. In other words, if you
die before me, I would get you in my scale of virtues. The son said: 0 father, what you love is dearer
to me than what I love.
Some learned man said: God sends down calamity after calamity on a servant till he walks upon the earth
free from sins. The saint Hatem Asam said: On the resurrection day, God will bring before four classes
of men four persons are proofs - (1) Hazrat Solaiman before the rich. (2) Hazrat Ishaq before the poor,
(3) Hazrat Eusof before the slaves. (4) and Hazrat Ayub before the patients.
It is reported that Hazrat Zakaria flew from the unbelievers and took refuge to a tree. They found clue
to this tree and cut the tree to two pieces by a saw. When the saw touched the head of Hazrat Zakaria,
he raised a shriek. Then God revealed to him: 0 Zakaria, if you raise shriek for the second time I will
remove your name from the register of prophethood. At this Hazrat Zakharia bite his teeth and kept
patience till he was hewn to pieces.
Loqman advised his son: 0 dear son, a religious man is tried by calamities, just as gold is tried by
fire. When God loves a party of men, He gives them trial. He becomes pleased with those who remain
satisfied with it and he becomes displeased with those who become displeased with it.
The saint Ahnaf-b-Qais said: One day I awoke in the morning and complained of pain in my teeth. I told
my uncle: I could not sleep last night owing to pain in my teeth. I told him of this three times. He
said:-You complain much of pain of one night, but nobody knows that I became blind for the last 20
years. God revealed to the Prophet Ozair: When any calamity befalls on you, don't complain of it to My
created beings but tell Me of your complaint, just as I do not make complaint of you to My angels.
MERITS OF CALAMITIES: You may say now that calamities are better than gifts. Shall we not then pray for
calamities? The answer is in the negative as the Prophet used to pray for being saved from the
calamities of this world and the next. He and the other Prophets prayed: 0 Lord, give us good in the
world and in the next. They used to seek refuge from the calamity of enemies. The Prophet said: You
pray to God for calamities while I pray to him for peace of mind. He said: Pray to God for peace of
mind. Nobody has been given a greater good than peace of mind except sure faith. The meaning of sure
faith is peace of mind. Mental peace is better than physical peace. The saint Mutref-b-Abdullah said:
That I am forgiven and that I express gratefulness for that is dearer to me than that calamity falls on
me and I keep patience.
Calamity is considered as a gift for two reasons. One reason is that calamity has got connection with
more gifts, either
112 PATIENCE AND GRATEFULNESS Vol-IV
temporal or spiritual. Another reason is the hope for getting rewards in calamities.
The saint Samnun prayed: I have got no joy except without Thee. Examine me as Thou liked. After this,
Samnun fell ill of constipation. He used to tell the boys: Pray for your false speaking uncle Samnun,
as I am not successful in examination.
Which is better - patience or gratefulness? There is a great deal of differences in this matter. Some
say patience is better and some to the contrary. The Prophet said: Of all the things that you have been
given the best is certain faith and firm determination of patience. God says: The patient will be given
full rewards without account. The Prophet said: A grateful eater is equal to a patient fasting man.
From the above, it appears that patience is greater than gratefulness. The Prophet said: Jumma is the
pilgrimage of the poor and women's jihad is to live with husband in a good manner. He said: Patience is
half of faith. The Prophet said: Of all the Prophets. Solaiman will go last to Paradise, as he enjoyed
rule of kingdom. Abdur Rahman-b-Auf will go last to paradise among my companions, as he was enormously
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