THAT SAGGINESS IN SEEKING BLISS IS AKIN TO ABSURDITY
What we mean by eternal
bliss is: Everlasting without demise, pleasure without effort, felicity without
tragedy, prosperity without poverty, perfection without defect, and esteem
As a whole: Everything
imagined be it a request of a petitioner or an aspiration of a yearner that is
eternally forever in a manner that will not be diminished by the passage of time
and extinction of generations.
Indeed, if the whole
world is full of grains and a bird was to pilfer a single grain every one
thousand years then the grains will be exhausted, not diminishing anything from
This then will not need
any encouragement to request it nor incriminating slackness in seeking it after
confirming its existence? Since every intelligent being will scurry for lesser
gains than this and it will not hold him back even if the way to accomplish it
is arduous, and requires leaving the worldly pleasures, and endure a multitude
The time spent in
adversity is finite and what is missed is minimal for the worldly pleasures are
transitory and easily exhausted.
As for the intelligent
person it is easy for him to part with petty amount in order to gain its
multiple ten fold. That is why you see everyone in commerce and industry and
even in the pursuit of knowledge will withstand all kinds of humiliations,
poverty, hardships, and intolerable pain, eagerly desiring a gain of a pleasure
in the future that is greater than what they miss at the present moment, a
limited increase. How is it then that they will not leave present conditions in
order to reach priceless and unlimited gains?
There is not an
intelligent being in creation that is eager to gain wealth when asked to spend a
dinar to wait a month in order to gain
pure gold surely his ego will quickly allow him to spend it. Even though it may
will be requested at that very instance, indeed that a person who will not even
withstand the pains of hunger, for example, in that time period in order that he
may achieve an abundant reward in the future will not be considered sane.
It may that it will not
be imagined to exist in creation, even though that death is always looming and
threatening over everyone and gold will not benefit anyone in the hereafter.
It may be that he will
die in that month or a day after that month and will not benefit from that gold.
All this will not deter his opinion in spending it for his eagerness in reaping
that reward. How is it then that the opinion of the intelligent being is
deceived in bearing the burden of desires in his life which is at maximum one
hundred years and the reward for it is everlasting bliss?
However the reluctance of creation in following the path of felicity is due to their lack of conviction in the final day. For even the deficient intellect will quickly judge to go on the path of felicity over one with complete intelligence.
 Being a translation of a chapter from Abu Hamid al-Ghazalis Criterion of Action (Mizan al-Ammal) Ed. By S. Dunyah (dar al-Marraif Press, Cairo, First Edition, 1964) pp. 180-181. Translation by Muhammad Hozien.
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