REVIVAL OF RELIGIOUS LEARNINGS IMAM GHAZZALI'S
Chapter 5. Tauhid and Tawakkal 195
What is Tauhid? 197
Freedom of will , 200
Meaning of God-reliance 210
Condition of God-reliance 225
To take medicines not opposed to God-reliance 234
TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL
Tawakkal-or God reliance is a stage of religion and a state of progress of the believers. Rather it is
the highest state of those who are near God. The knowledge about God reliance is very subtle and the
cause of it is that if one looks at the causes and ingredients of an action, he sets up partnership
with God. In other words, if a man believes that anything has got power over the actions of a man, he
can't be counted as a true monotheist. On the other hand, if the intermediary causes are deducted, it
is casting aspersion on the Prophet's ways and dishonour on Shariat. If one disbelieves the causes of
an action there is misuse of intellect and as such one is drowned in the abyss of ignorance. so the
real meaning of God-reliance is every subtle. The meaning of God reliance is intellect Shariat and
Tauhid, the intermingling of three elements in a proportionate manner.
MERITS OF GOD-RELIANCE
Quran : If you are believers rely on God-5 : 23. God says Persons of God reliance rely on God. (3) God
says : God is sufficient for one who rely on God-3: 65. (4) God says : Surely God loves those who rely
on Him-3: 159. He who reaches this stage is loved by God who is his surety. God protects one for whom
God is surety. He loves him and protects him. (5) God says
Is not God sufficient for His servant ? He who searches for sufficiency from other than God has got no
reliance on God and knows the above verse as false as this verse was questioned for reply with truth.
(6) God says : Has not a time come over a man when he was not a thing to be mentioned ? (7) God says :
He who relies on God, God is most powerful and wise. He is so powerful that He does not put one to
disgrace who comes to His refuge and He does not destroy him who comes to His care. He is so just that
he who relies on Him does no reduce or destroy his efforts. (8) God says : What you worship besides God
is mere servants like You. In other words, all things other than God have got needs like you. (9) God
says : What you worship besides God has got no power to give you sustenance. So search sustenance from
God and worship Him only. (10) God says : All hidden treasures of heaven and earth are only for God,
but the hypocrites do not
TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL Vol-IV
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 197
understand. (11) God says : He conducts every affair and nobody intercedes except with His permission.
Hadis-(1) The Prophet said : I saw all of my followers at the time of pilgrimage. I saw my followers
filling up all plains and mountains. I was asked : Are you satisfied. I said : Only 70,000 Muslims will
go to Paradise without account even though their numbers are many. He was asked : 0 Messenger of God,
who are they? He said : They are those who do no work looking at good or bad signs, who don't rely on
spells and charms and rely only on their Lord. The companion Okasha stood up and said : 0 Messenger of
God pray so that I may be one of them. The Prophet said : 0 God, make him one of them. Another
companion stood up and said : Pray so that my be one of them. The Prophet said Okasha kept you behind
and went forward. (2) The Prophet said If you can rely on God with due reliance. He will provide you
with sustenance in such a manner as He provides birds and beasts. They leave their nests early in the
morning and return in the evening filling up their bellies. (3) The Prophets said : He who returns to
God after cutting off all connections, God is sufficient for him in his every action and He provides
him from such a source which is beyond his conception. He who is addieted to the world, God hands him
over to the world, (4) The Prophet said He who is pleased in not depending on men should hold fast more
to what is near God than what is near men. (5) It has been narrated that when the family members of the
Prophet became, hungry, he used to say : Stand up for prayer. He used to say : My Lord ordered me only
for this, God says : Enjoing family members for prayer and stand steadfast to it. (6) The Prophet said
He who takes refuge to enchantment and charms does not rely on God. (7) It has been narrated that when
the Prophet Abraham was thrown into the fire, Gabriel said to him: Have you got any necessity ? He said
: I have got no necessity from you God's word is sufficient : God is sufficient for me and how good is
He as an object of refuge, when arrangements were being made to throw him into fire, he informed
Gabriel of this. God then sent to him revelation : Abraham is he who fulfilled his promise-53 : 37. (8)
God revealed to David, 0 David, there is no such a man who seeks refuge to Me after forsaking the
refuges of all men that I will not find out a way to save him even though all in heaven and earth stand
Sayings of sages. Sayeed-bin-Zubair : One scorpion stung me. My mother took oath from me that l must go
to a charmer and heal myself. I stretched out my hand which was not stung to the charmer. Ibrahim
Khawas read this verse : Rely on One who is ever-living and who will not die. He said : Is there any
refuge to men after this verse ? (2) Some one said to a sage in his dream : He who relies firmly on God
seeks his own sustenance. (3) A certain sage said : Search for livelihood should not divert you from
compulsory duties or else the affairs of your next world will be spoiled. You will not get wealth
except what has been destined for you. (4) Ihya-bin-Muaz said : When sustenance comes to a man without
asking, it is a proof that sustenance gets orders to search for man. (5) Hazrat Ibrahim-bin-Adham said:
I asked a certain Christian monk : Wherefrom do you get your livelihood ? He said : It is not known to
me, but I ask my Lord wherefrom He gives my provision. (6) Hasan-bin-Haram asked the saint Wais Qarni :
In which country do you order me to live? He hinted at Syria, Ibn-Haram said : How shall I earn my
livelihood there ? Wais Qarni said : Alas for one who has got doubt in mind and who does not get any
benefit from advice. (7) A certain sage said : When I am satisfied with God as agent, I got guidance to
WHAT IS TAUHID? Know 0 readers, that God-reliance is a door out of the doors of faith. All the doors of
faith are not kept in order except with knowledge, condition and action. Out of these three elements,
God-reliance is born. Knowledge is the basis, action is its fruit. Another name of conditions is God
reliance. It is called faith in, dictionary, as the meaning of faith is corroboration. What is
corroborated by heart is called knowledge. If it is firm, it is called certainly of faith or sure
faith. It has got many doors, but it is placed on two doors-(1) Tauhid and God reliance.
TAUHID MEANS- (1) To believe that there is no deity but God, He is one, there is no partner for him,
(2) to believe in His power and (3) to believe in His kindness and skill. The faith of one is perfect
who believes that there is no deity but God, He is one, there is no partner for Him, there is His
sovereignty, all praise is due to Him, He is powerful over all things. This is the basis of God
reliance. In other words, Tauhid is a vast ocean which has got no limit.
198 TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL Vol-IV
FOUR STAGES Of TAUHID; The first stage is like outer
cover of a coconut, the second stage is the inner cover of a
coconut, the third stage is the kernel of a coconut and the fourth
stage is the oil of the kernel. The first stage of Tauhid is to utter by
tongue "There is no deity but God". The second stage is to confirm it by heart. The third stage is like
kernel which can be seen by inner light or by way of Kashf. This is the stage of those who are near
God. The fourth stage is like oil in kernel. He sees nothing but God. This is the stage of the truthful
or it is called Fana-fi-Tauhid or to lose oneself in Tauhid. Even he forgets himself. In the first
stage, a man is saved from sword by uttering only Kalima Tauhid. In the second stage, he believes the
internal meaning. Such a class of the faithful are saved front e punishment of the next world. In the
third stage, he sees nobody except God as the cause of action and the fourth stage is the utmost limit
of Tauhid. In the second stage, breast is expanded by the light of Islam as God says. God expands the
breasts of one for Islam whom I-Ie wants to guide. God says : He whose breast God expands for Islam
remains upon light from his Loard.
Question. How can one in the highest stage not see but One, the source of all actions, while he sees
the heaven and earth and all the things of the material world ? How can one become many?
Answer. Know, 0 dear readers that this affair appertains to the secret mysteries of the spiritual world
and it is not allowed to write these secrets. Arefs said that to disclose God's secrets is infidelity
and there is no connection of worldly knowledge with them. It is true that in the preliminary
observation it is difficult to know many as one, but it is possible to explain them. The same thing
becomes many things from one consideration and becomes one from another consideration. Body, life,
hands, feet, bones etc., if looked at separately become many things of the same man and if looked froth
another angle becomes one man composed of many thins. There are many person who see the same one man
but do not think of his different organs at that time. The difference between these two things is that
he thinks that he saw the whole man if he sees the face only of a drowning than. So only sight of an
organ leads one to think that he saw the whole. man, Similarly is the case of the Creator and the
created. They appear in many forms. One one consideration, they are one and on another consideration
they are many.
Vol-IV THE 1300K OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 199
The first 'stage of Tauhid is not absolved from hypocrisy and
the name of the second stage is faith which is current among
ordinary Muslims. The basis of God-reliance is established upon the third state of Tauhid, as mere
faith in Tauhid cannot bring the condition of God-reliance. In this stage there is belief that except
God, there is no doer of actions. God created creation provision, wealth good and bad, life and death,
poverty and solvency, He has got no partner. When it is clear to you, you will not look towards others.
Rather you will fear Him, hope in Him, have faith in Him and rely on Him as He is singular in actions
and everything besides God is subject to His discipline. You have got no authority to change an atom of
the creation of God. When the doors of spiritual kingdom will be opened to you it will be clear to you,
more clear than external eye sight.
The devil turns you from this stage of Tauhid to such a place where you have got doubts for two
reasons. The first reason is to look at the freedom of will of man and the second reason is to look to
the lifeless things, as you look to the fall of rain for growth of corns or crops, hope for rain from
clouds and hope fro wind for plying of boats. In these things, there is setting up of Shirk or
partnership with God. For this reason, God says : When they get on board a boat, they invoke God with
sincere heart, but when He takes them to the shore, they set up Shirk. This means that they say : If
the velocity of hurricanes would not have come to a stand still, we would not have been saved.
He who knows the secrets, knows that the hurricane is nothing but a terrible wind conducted by One who
has got control over everything. So if one considers wind as the cause of deliverance. He is like one
who was arrested for murder but the 'king sent a letter pardoning him. The arrested man remembers pen
ink and paper as the causes of his deliverance and says : Had not been these elements. I would not have
been saved. So he considers these things as the causes of his safety. This is utter foolishness. He who
knows that these things have got no independent will and that these things have been made subservient
to the writer does not consider these elements as the causes of his deliverance but expresses gratitude
to the writer. Similarly, the sum, moon, stars, rains, cloud and other lifeless things are all
subservient to God, the Almighty and All Powerful. He is the cause of everything. In fact, God is the
writer and not
200 TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL Vol-IV
the king in the above instance, God says : When you shot arrows, you did not shoot them but God shot.
When it will be clear to you, the devil will be despaired of you and you will reach true stage of
FREEDOM OF WILL: Now the question of freedom of will comes to you. You may question : How can you say
that everything comes from God ? One man supplies you provision according to his wish. He may give it
to you or may not give. He may kill you or not kill. How can you not fear him ? The answer is that the
weak people commit these mistakes as do the ants. An ant sees the writing by the pen on the paper. It
also sees that the front portion of the pen is making the pages black. The ant thinks that the pen is
making the white paper black through mistake. It is the mistake of its sight. So is the mistake of one
whose breast has not been expanded by the light of God. He does not see the ultimate Cause of all
causes who is God. So he sees the writer as the agent of writing. This is extreme foolishness. Those
who are experienced in spiritual things and whose inner light has been enkindled understand that God
gave every ?tom of the heavens and earth power of speech with which they speak, and they have got such
tongue by which they speak without voice. Those who are unable to hear it do not hear it. I don't mean
the open ear with which voice is heard as voice is necessary for open hearing. By hearing I mean such
thing which has got no letter or voice or language.
Question : Your explanation is a wonder which can not be grasped by intellect. So please explain it
clearly to us.
Answer : Know, 0 readers, that those who have got spiritual illumination know that every atom within
the heavens and earth has got its prayer which is endless andlimitless. It is such a word as comes from
the ocean of the words of God. God says : Had the seas been ink for praise of my Lord, they would have
dried up.' The secrets of the material and spiritual world talk secretly. To disclose those secrets is
abominable, rather the breasts of the pious people are like graves of the secrets. Have you seen a
trusted courtier of a king disclosing the secrets of the king? Had there been permission to disclose
the secrets of everybody, the Prophet would not have said : Had you known what I know you would have
laughed little and wept much. He also prohibited to disclose the secrets of Taqdir or fate. He said :
When mention is
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 201
made of stars, be silent. When mention is made of fate be silent. When mention is made of my
companions, be silent. The Prophet sometimes disclosed some secrets to Huzaifah. This shows that the
spiritually illumined persons do not disclose them for two reasons-impossibility of disclosing secrets
and limitlessness of His praise.
He who sees the writing on paper, sees the blackening of white paper by ink, (1) He asks the paper : I
have seen your face white and bright but why do I find it now black? The paper says How is your
judgment that you are asking me this question ? I have not made my face black but the ink pot was
filled up with ink, the ink travelled to me and made my face black. He said : you have spoken the
(2) He asked the ink about it which said : You are unjust to me. I was living peacefully in inkpot but
the pen forcefully took me out unjustly and separated me from my parent body. The pen is responsible
for it and not myself. He said: You have spoken the truth.
(3) He asked the pen : why have you taken out ink from the ink pot and thus have done injustice to it ?
The pen said : Ask the hand and fingers about it. I was a reed by the river side. The hand cut the reed
by a knife, cut me off from my parent body, severed my head and dived it into ink-pot Go from me and
ask it which did injustice to me. He said : You have spoken the truth.
(4) Then he asked the hand about its oppression on the pen and it said : I am nothing but a piece of
flesh with blood. Have you sees a lump of flesh moving independently ? I am only a conveyance subject
to order. Strength rides over me and orders me to do a thing. He said : You have spoken the truth.
(5) He asked the strength : Why are you using the hand as servant and conveyance ? The strength said :
Don't rebuke me. Do you think that I have oppressed the hand riding over it? I do not move it, nor do I
order it. I sleep and remain quiet till a representative comes to me. He compels me to do a thing, The
name of the representative is Will. He wakes me up from sleep and compels me to do an act. Then he said
: You have spoken the truth.
202 TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL Vol-IV
(6) He asked the will : What thing encourages you to move the strength and compels it to do the act ?
The will said.: Don't punish me in haste as I have got an excuse. I do not rise myself, rather I am
caused to rise by the order of intellect, the messenger of knowledge. He presents me in mind and order
me : Awaken the strength. I am subject to intellect and knowledge. It is my bounden duty to obey it. I
have got no way to go against it. So ask knowledge about it. He said: You have spoken the truth.
(7) He asked knowledge about it. It said : I have been imprinted on the tablet of soul and I am the
light of soul. I have got no light of my own and I have been lighted. I am only a tablet set firmly in
soul. I have got no freedom. Ask the pen as without pen, nothing can be imprinted.
At this time the questioner began to entertain doubt and the reply did not give him satisfaction. He
said : I have passed many stages and everyone attributed responsibility on others and everyone gave
satisfactory answer, but you say : The pen writes on me. The pen is a reed only, tablet is a plank only
and light is but a (leak of fire. I heard in this stage light; writing, pen etc. But I don't see them.
It is a wonder to me that I hear their sound, but do hot see them. Then knowledge said to him If what
you say Is true, the reason Is that your provision is little and your conveyance is weak. Know that
there are Injurious things in the path which you wish to tread. It is better to leave the way. What has
been created for a man has been made easy fot him. Know that there are three hurdles in this
path-material world, spiritual or unseen world and world of power and strength. Paper, ink, pen and
hand appertain to this material world. The spiritual world will come after me. When you will go there
In advance of me, you will reach that world. The third is a world of strength lying between this
material and spiritual world. You have crossed three stages of this world-strength; will and knowledge.
This world is intermediary or means between the material and the spiritual world. The material world is
easier for the path and the spiritual would is more difficult. He who walks upon the ground walks upon
the material world. He who takes a boat and embarks upon it, embarks upon the world of strength. He who
walks upon water without the help of a boat or any conveyance walks in the spiritual world. If the
belief of certainty enters your mind, you
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 203
enter upon that stage as the Prophet said : Had his sure faith increased more, he would have sojourned
in the air. Once a man asked Jesus Christ : Did Jesus Christ walk upon water ? the Prophet replied to
the above effect.
He (who treads the path of religion) asked again : I am tired of this affair, I fear the path you
showed me. I know not whether I can cross it, Is there any sign of it ? Knowledge said : It has got its
sign. Open your eye and confine your eye sight towards me. If at this, the matter of pen is made clear
to you wherewith the tablet on the heart is written, you will be fit for the path. He who knocks at the
door of the spiritual world after crossing the world of Zabarut or strength, will .find the affairs of
the pen. Don't you see that the affairs of the pen were disclosed to the Prophet in his early stage ?
God revealed for the first time : read and your Lord is the Almighty, who taught with the pen, who
taught what man knew not---68: 1. .
Then the trader of the path of religion asked : I have opened my eyes, but I don't find the reed or
tablet or anybody. Then knowledge said : What do you say ? Did you not hear that the owner of the house
is not like the owner of the furnitures of the house ? Don't you know that the being of God is not like
the being of anybody ? Similarly His hand is not like the hand of anything of the material world. His
pen is not like the pen of the material world. His word is not like the word of the material world and
His writing is not like the writing of the material world. These are affairs of God appertaining to the
spiritual world. The being of God has got no physique. He is not confined to any place as a thing of
the world. His hand is not composed of blood, flesh and bone like that of man. His pen is not like the
modest reed, his tablet is not made of plank, His pen has got no sound or letter, His writing has got
no impression of ink. He who considers God like him, is dead. He who explains Him by example is a
woman. You will be free from doubt if you have understood the following Hadis of the Prophet : God
created Adam according to His image You will be free from doubt if you understand by this image secret
attributes which can be seen with the eye of knowledge and not with the external eye. You stay then on
the lofty hill. Why do you not travel in this way ? You will hear from the bottom of your heart what
will be revealed to you and you will find guidance from the light. Perhaps you will be called from
heaven as Moses was called : I am surely your Lord.
204 TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL Vol-IV
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 205
When the trader in the path of religion heard about this knowledge, he knew of his defects and was
enraged at his passions and his mental fire broke out. Before this the light in his heart was dimly
burning, even though it did not touch the fire. When knowledge was puffed up in his heart, his oil was
enkindled. Then light upon light came to him. Then knowledge said to him: Value this moment greatly.
Open your eyes, so that you may find the path. When he opened his eyes, he found the pen of God as
described. It is not made of reed, it has got no head. It is incessantly writing in the mind or soul of
men. He said being surprised at it: What a good thing is knowledge. I don't consider this pen as that
of the material world.
He then asked the pen: 0 pen, you are constantly writing knowledge of many things in the soul of men,
the knowledge with the help of will is giving strength and the strength is helping an action. What is
the mystery? The pen said: Have you forgotten that reply you have received from the pen of the material
world? It placed responsibility on hand. He said: I have not forgotten it. The pen said: My answer is
like that pen of the material world. Then he said: Have you heard that God created Adam of His own
image? He said: I heard it. The pen then said: Then ask the angel of my right side about me. I am
subject to him and he compels me to write. So there is no distinction between the pen of God and the
pen of man regarding obedience, but there is difference in form. He asked: Who is the angel by the
right side? The pen said: Have you not heard this verse - The heavens are in His right hand? He said:
Yes, I heard it. The pen said: All the pens of the material world are within His right hand and the
angels move them.
Then he said that the right hand side is not like ours, their hands are not like ours, their fingers
are not like lour fingers. When he asked the angel about pen, he said: The answer from the material pen
is like it. It depends on strength. Then he went to the world of power and strength and saw such a
wonderful thing which is very significant in comparison with that of this world. The strength said: I
am an attribute only. Ask the owner of strength and power as it is the work of the owner of power and
not of power. Then it was announced from behind the screen: He should not be asked what He does, but
you will be asked what you do. He then lost his senses and when recovered exclaimed: All praise is due
to Thee, I return to thee, I rely on Thee. Thou art
All powerful. I fear nobody except Thee. 0 Lord, expand my breast, so that I may know Thee. Remove
sluggishness from my tongue, so that I may praise Thee.
Then there came the proclamation from behind the screen: Take care from the greed of praise don't go
forward over the Prophet, rather return to him. Take what he gave you and forbid yourself from what he
prohibited you - 59: 7. Say what he said to you as he said nothing about God except: Thou art pure, I
can't recount Thy praise. Thou art, as thou hast praised Thee. Then he said: 0 God, if there is no
power of tongue to praise Thee, should there be no greed of soul to know Thee? Then there came the
proclamation: Be careful of treading the necks of the truthful. Return to the greatest truthful man and
follow him and the companions of the Prophet who are like stars. You will find guidance from any of
them. Have you not heard that He said: To be baffled in the search of My knowledge is the limit of
knowledge. It is sufficient for you to be deprived of My knowledge of meeting with Me staying in front
of Me. It is sufficient for you to be baffled in appreciating My grandeur.
At this time, the sojourner in the path of religion returns and finds excuse to ask him. He says to the
angel on the right and to the pen, knowledge, will and strength: Take my excuse. I have first entered
this city. There is fear for every first entrant. Now it is clear to me that your excuse is true and
the truth has come to me vividly that He who is the master of the material, spiritual world and the
world of strength and power is the Almighty God. You are subservient to His will. He is the first and
the last, the open and the secret.
He is then asked: How is He the first and the last? These are contradictory terms. How is He the open
and the secret? The first is not the last and the open is not the secret. He said: He is the First in
comparison with the things created as all things come from Him in seriatim one after another. He is the
Last in comparison with the things that will remain, as they will return from stage to stage till they
return to God. That is the end of their journey. So He is the first of the past things and He is the
last of the future things. He is secret to those who are in this material world and who search Him by
their five external organs. He is the Open to those who search Him in the spiritual world in their
206 TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL Vol-IV
lighted lamps of their hearts by the secret insight. This is true Tauhid and it is now clear to them
that the cause of action is He.
He who does not deny spiritual world should sojourn with those who walk in the path of religion. When
faith becomes firm and sure, he enters the spiritual world. When purity of soul is increased, his sure
faith also increases. If a man is seen in semi-darkness very early in the morning, you can understand
that he is a man. Then when the sun rises, his faith remains the same but the figure of his body
becomes vivid. The believers and the owners of Kashf are like the sorcery of the sorcerers of Pharaoh
and the miracles of Moses. When Moses showed the miracle of a serpent the sorcerers of Pharaoh
surrendered to Moses as they saw then the real truth and said to Pharaoh: Even if you cut off our hands
and feet or crucify us, we shall not swerve an inch from the truth. Thus their hearts were expanded to
such an extent that they preferred death than return to disbelief. In short the truth that is
established after Kashf is not changed.
Similarly there is no change of Tauhid near the owners of Kashf or inner introspection. But the Tauhid
which is established upon general faith is like the sorcery of Pharaoh's sorcerers. Their look is only
to the external serpent.
Question: You say that the elements are also subservient. But how can man do a thing if he wishes and
can not do if he does not wish.
Answer: It is said that man writes by fingers, takes breath by nose and separates water from his body
when he stands in water. Thus there are three different modes or work of a man writing, breathing and
separation of water. These are different works but these are the same from the stand point of
dependence. (1) The first kind of man's work is natural, for instance if he places his foot in water it
becomes separate. (2) The second kind of man's work is natural wilful work, such as taking breath,
passing stool and urine, taking food and drink. (3) The third kind of man's work is action of strength
and power, such as walking talking etc. There is no power of man in the natural works. Whenever he
stands in water or passes though the air, water or air goes away of itself. This is inevitable. The
second kind of work is natural wilful work as man can not shut up his breath even after hard efforts.
Therefore the will of taking breath comes automatically. Whenever a thing is heavy, it separates the
lighter body and takes
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 207
its own place. So heaviness and lightness are not subject to man's Will. Similarly the wilful acts of
man are not subject to volition. Similarly the acts of volition are not subject to the will of man. If
a man takes a needle and shows it in order to pierce the eye of another, the latter will suddenly close
his eyes, even though it is his action of will. So actions of will also occur according to the natural
dictation of God's laws. The third kind of work in connection with power has got some controversy.
Writing, walking, talking etc. are acts requiring strength. It is said of these actions that a man do
these things if he wills and does not do them if he does not will. From this, the people understand
that these are actions of volition but these are also in fact not subject to his will. The reasons are
Will comes at the behest of intellect which says: This is an action profitable to you. All things are
of two kinds - (1) One kind of things inform you openly or secretly that particular action is
beneficial to you. (2) Another kind of things inform you after mature thoughts and efforts that a
particular action is beneficial to you. The example of the first kind is that if anybody is about to
throw needle in your eyes or to strike you with sword, you at once know that to remove it is beneficial
to you. It is natural then that will rises with knowledge and power with will. You can then understand
without any thinking that it will be beneficial to you to close your eyes. This knowledge raises will
in your mind at once to close your eyes owing to will, and strength comes in your eyes to close them
up. There are things however which require thinking and consideration whether it will be beneficial to
you or not. If you think that it will be beneficial, then knowledge raises will which is the real will.
Owing to will, there arises strength which produces an action and knowledge determines it. It
determines which will be beneficial to you and which is right and which is wrong. So without the order
of knowledge, will does not rise. That man is compelled to do an act means that the action comes from a
foreign strength or power, and not from within himself. Action with power means that he is an object of
will. It arises compulsorily at the order of knowledge or wisdom, as the action is good and beneficial.
This order compulsorily arises in mind. Fire has got the strength of burning and fire compulsorily
burns. So the action of fire is guided by an external agency, but God's action is the result of
absolute will. Man's action lie between these two. It means that his action is not entirely guided
208 TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL Vol-IV
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 209
by others or absolute like the action of God. Man's will and strength are guided by another. A man is
the object or intermediary of God's will and power flow. He gives birth to power and will within man.
For' this reason, man is not completely guided by another like a tree. Hence the action of man cannot
be called completely controlled This is what is called acquisition as man is the medium of the flow of
God's power or intermediary path. This power flows through him according to the law of God. Hence man's
action is not opposite to man's freedom or dependence. God's action is absolutely free and wilful with
power. But His will and power are not subject to thinking and efforts like us.
Question: You say that intellect raises will, will raises power and power raises motion. If it is true,
each is begotten by another and not from the power of God. If you deny it, what is the meaning of one
coming from another?
Answer: It is not true that one comes from another. All these things depend on an original Power, the
source of all powers. Only those who are perfect in knowledge can understand it. It is true that one
thing is connected with another thing in a chain and that is with a condition. When there arises
wisdom, then comes the will from the original power. Again intellect does not come unless there is life
and life also does not come unless there is a body for life. It cannot be said that there is birth of
life from body. The chain of arrangement of things is like that. God says: I have not created what is
between heaven and earth out of sport. I have created both with truth. So what is between heaven and
earth has been created according to a set purposes and arrangement and order. The nature of one created
thing can not be changed to another. The arrangement with which a thing has been created cannot be
altered. For instance, the'rise of some sort of knowledge is not delayed in foetus if there is life in
it and wild is not delayed in case of rise of knowledge. This is well arranged plan.
Question: Tauhid and Shariat - how do they get together? The meaning of Tauhid is that there is no doer
of an action except God and the meaning of Shariat is to fix the duties of a servant..f the servant
becomes the doer of an action, how can God becomE the doer?
Answer: If an action has got two meanings, they are not conflicting. It is said that the ruler killed a
certain man. In another meaning, it is said that the executioner killed the man. The meaning is the
same as by order of the ruler, the executioner killed the man. In other words, the ruler killed the
man. Similarly a man is said to do an action. In another meaning, it can be said that God does the
action through the man. The meaning of His action is that He orders the action to be done and
encourages it. The meaning that man does an action is that he is an object in whom He created
knowledge, will and strength. So the movements of limbs are connected together with will and strength.
The power of man is connected with the power of God, as the doer has connection with cause and the
discoverer with discovery: Everything of man is linked with strength and connected with the object of
strength or the flow of strength. This object of the flow of strength is called the master of action.
In the Quran, all the actions are sometimes attributed by God to angels and sometimes to men and
sometimes to Himself. About causing of death God says: The angels will cause their death. Again He
says: "God takes the life of a man at the time of his death." God says: Did you consider what crops you
sow? God says: I sent down rain etc. God says: I sent to Mary My spirit or angel. He appeared to her in
the form of a man - 19:17. God says: I infused My spirit in to him. God says: Fight against them. He
will punish them through your hands. God says: You have not killed them but God killed them. God says:
You have not shot arrows when you shot but God shot arrows. This means that your shooting is not like
the shooting of God. You shot as a servant, but God shot as a master. God says: Have you considered
about the life germ which you drop? Have you created it or Myself? The Prophet said describing the
angel of uterus: He takes the life-germ in his hand, makes it a shape and says: 0 God, shall it be a
woman or a man? God replies to what He wishes and the angel makes figure accordingly.
The Prophet said: The angels of life and death once quarrelled. The angel of life said: I bring the
dead to life. The angel of death said: I cause the living to die. God revealed to them? Stay upon what
you been entrusted with. It is I who causes death and gives life. Nobody except I can make one dead or
210 TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL Vol-N
One repentant said: I am repentant of God `and not to Muhammad. The Prophet then said: This man
recognised the right of one having right. He who attributes anything to God is really truthful. He
recognises truth and its real nature. He who attributes everything to anything other than God is
misguided. Nothing has got the, existence of its own. It depends on the existence of another. In that
context the former thing is void. In fact, there is no truth except the Ever-living and Ever-existing.
He exists by his own attribute. He is the truth and anything besides Him is void. The saint Sahal
Tastari said: 0 writer, there was, God but you were not. He will exist and you will not exist you say
now: I exist because I exist now. You did not exist before but now you say, I exist. So whose exists at
present did not exist before.
Question: Now it has been proved that everything is subject to order. So what is the meaning of reward
and punishment, sin and virtue, pleasure of God and wrath of God?
Answer: Know, 0 readers, we have described it in the chapter. of Gratefulness that good and evil occur
at His. command. What has been ordered for a thing must occur. It has got no failure no disobedience.
Everything was written. It awaits only for time, because everything written will occur in your case and
must come to pass. What will not occur, it shall not come. What will occur in your- case has been made
easy for you and what will not occur has been made difficult for you.
STAGES OF GOD-RELIANCE: The stages of God-reliance are connected with kuowledge, condition and action.
We have discussed about knowledge, condition is the intermediary between knowledge and action.
Knowledge is the basis of condition and action is its fruit.
MEANING OF GOD RELIANCE: The meaning of Tawakkal or reliance is to entrust an affair to another and to
believe him fully in that respect. He who is entrusted upon is called wakil or pleader and he who
entrusts in called Moakkil or client. So sure faith'in wakil is called reliance. I shall cite an
example of an wakil in case of litigation. An wakil shall. have four qualities. - (1) sufficient power
to understandr(2) ability, (3) power of speech, and (4) sympathy and kindness for client. With regard
to the first quality, he must have power to understand the places of
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 211
deception, false claim and even the minutest details. With regard to the second quality, nobody engages
an wakil having no ability. He shall not flatter, shall not fear to disclose truth or feel shame or
show cowardice. With regard to the third quality of power speech, he must have it, otherwise many good
reasons can not be shown for want of clear expression. With regard to the fourth quality, he must try
to help an oppressed client.
Similar is God reliance. When reliance on an wakil with such descriptions is made, how much reliance on
God should be made? When you believe that there is no master of an action, besides God, that he is All
powerful and All knowing, that He bestows His kindness, favour, help on all the people
'and some special peoples, that there is no power and might except through God, there is no knowledge
but in Him, he must rely on him and will not look to his own power and strength as there is no power
except in God. If you do not find in you this reliance, it is for two reasons-weakness in you in any
one of the four qualities and weakness of faith in your mind. So without the united strength of mind
and faith, God reliance does not become perfect. With these two things peace of mind can be attained.
'Peace of mind is one thing 'and certainty of faith is another thing. There are many men with
-certainty of faith who have got no peace of mind as Hazrat Ibrahim said: 0 my Lord, show me how you
give life to a dead thing. God said: Have you got no faith? He said: Yes, I have, but in order to
console my mind. Hazrat Ibrahim had full faith, but he was eager to see it to bring his peace of mind.
There are many men having peace of man but with no sure faith. A Jew or a Christian may have peace of
mind but no sure faith.
Three classes of God-reliant man. There are three classes of God- reliant men according to the measure
of their reliance on God. The first class of God reliant man is like one who entrusts all his affairs
in a case to his wakil who is appointed by him from a consideration of his ability, eloquence and
kindness. The second class of God-reliant man is more developed than the first. His condition is like
that of an infant who knows nobody except his mother. When any danger comes, he takes refuge to his
mother and believes nobody except his mother. In every condition, he catches hold of her cloth. When
any danger comes to him in absence of his mother, the first word he utters -- 0 mother. Such a
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Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 213
relies on God as a child relies on his mother. The difference between the first and second classes is
that in the latter one annihilates himself in God-reliance, while it is not so in the first case.
The third class is the highest for a God-reliant man. Such a man lives before God is such a way as a
dead man is kept before one who washes him. He thinks that he moves similarly at the hand of his
original fate. He is firm and steady. He thinks that the flow, of his movements, strength, will,
knowledge and other attributes run through Him compulsorily. He is not like a child who takes refuge to
his mother, cries to her and runs after her mother. He is like that child who know that wherever he
will stay, his mother will find him out. If he does not like to suckle his mother's breast, his mother
will suckle him. Such a person gives up invocation as he trusts in His mercy and help and thinks that
he will get more if he does not want than if he wants.
Question: Is it possible?
Answer: In answer to it, know, 0 readers, that it is not impossible, but it is difficult and rare. The
second and third stages of God-reliance are more difficult than the first stage. The occurrence of the
first stage of God-reliance is near possibility. Even if the second and third stages are attained, its
lasting is still more difficult.
We have mentioned that Tahid has got two outer covers and two inner substances. Similarly 'there is no
deity but God' has got two outer covers and two inner substances. This appears from the following
saying of the Prophet: Whose utters "There is no deity but God" confirning it in his heart with sincere
faith. Paradise is sure for him. These two conditions exist secretly in the traditions which have got
no such clear expressions, as sovereignty dots not come by utterance. The name of movement of the
tongue is uttrence and the name of the tie of mind is also utterance which is the utterance of the mind
behind which truthfulness and sincere faith lie. The throne of power is found for the near ones which
are really selfless men. God says: 'They will be seated upon the thrones, reclining thereon and facing
one another: The fortunate will have many fortunes. He described oily the fortunes of shade, fruits,
trees, black-eyed virgins and such other pleasures pleasing -to the eyes, but these are also
enjoyed by the lower animals. But the pleasure of reign and nearness to God is not to be compared with
the above pleasures. Are these enjoyments more pleasant to the saints and sages than those to be had
from the sight of Lord. He who is more addicted to satisfying his lust and carnal desire can be
compared to a beast. God says regarding him: 'They are like beasts, nay they are more wretched: The
cause is that the beasts can not search the nature of angels and they are confined within their nature.
But man can attain the nature of angels. He who has got power to attain this, but does not do so is
disliked. He who utters the Kalema only by mouth can not attain true God-reliance.
Sayings of sages about condition of God reliance. It appears from the sayings of the sages that God
reliance is confined within three stages. Abu Musa Daylmi said: I asked one day Abu Yezid: What is the
meaning of God reliance? He said: What do you say about it? I heard my companions say: If the ferocious
beasts and the poisonous snakes be by your left and right sides and if still your heart does not
tremble, this condition is called reliance. Abu Yezid said: Yes, it is true that it is near
God-reliance, but if the dwellers of heaven are marry making in paradise and the dwellers of Hell are
suffering in Hell and if you are told to select either of these two and you select the former, it you
will go out of God-reliance. What Abu Musa said is only an information regarding the stage of
God-reliance and that is included in the third and highest class of God-reliance. Hazrat Abu Bakr,
however, took precaution by covering the holes of serpents in the cave. It can't be said therefor that
he gave up God-reliance. He did not do it to save his own life but the life of the Prophet Muhammad
(P.H.) The man of God-reliance fears not the serpent but one who controls serpents as without God's
help, the serpents have got no power to bite.
Zun Nun Misri was once asked about God reliance. He said: To be separate from many deities and to cut
off these causes is God- reliance. Abu Abdullah Qureshi was asked about God-reliance and he said: To be
attached to God in every circumstance is God- reliance. He was again asked: Tell me more about it. He
said: To give up the causes till one takes the Creator of cause as guide is God-reliance. Sayeed
Kharraj said: God-reliance is the name of two things movement without peace and peace without movement.
Peace without movement means
214 TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL. Vol-IV
peace of mind entrusting all affairs to God. Movement without peace means seeking such a refuge as a
child seeks refuge to its mother and crises for help from her. Abu Ali said: There are three stages of
God-reliance, first stage is reliance on God. The second stage is Taslim or self-surrender to God and
the third stage is to entrust all affairs on God. God- reliant man feels peace in His promise,
self-surrending man thinks divine knowledge as sufficient and one entrusting is satisfied with His
WORK OF GOD-RELIANT MAN. Know, 0 readers, that condition arises out of knowledge and the first of
conditions is action. Some think that the meaning of God-reliance is to give up earnings, to give up
efforts, and to lie -upon the ground like thrown plank or like meat on a wood. This is the conjecture
of the fools, it is unlawful in Shariat which praises God-reliant men.
MAN'S ACTION IS SUBJECT TO FOUR CONDITIONS(1) To know as profitable the earning of what is not in one's
possession, (2) to hoard a profitable thing. (3) to remove an injurious thing which has not yet come
such as to save oneself from thiefs, beasts and injurious things and (4) to adopt means to remove and
impending danger like taking medicine to remove a disease. So the actins of man are not outside these
four thingsearning a profitable thing to preserve it, to remove an injurious thing and to adopt means
to remove a danger. From the above, three kinds of things arise-(1) what is absolutely necessary
according to the laws of nature. (2) what is necessary but not absolutely necessary and (3) what can be
done more in less time.
(1) What is absolutely necessary-To give up what is absolutely necessary according to the natural laws
of God is notGod- reliance, such as to give up food, water and air. When you are hungry and food is
placed before you it is not God-reliance to give it up. This is against law of nature. Similarly if you
do not cultivate land and hope for crops or if you do not cohabit with wife but still hope to have a.
child, it will be madness and not God-reliance. It comes from knowledge and mental state. Knowledge
consists in the fact that God gave you food, hand and teeth, and mental state consists in the fact that
you must believe in the actions of God.
(2) What is necessary but not absolutely necessary. For instance, one leaves a town and goes to deep
jungle without a
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 215
companion or without food and arms. Without these necessary things, there is chance of losing life.
This action goes out of illegality on two conditions -(1) One condition is that he can go without
necessary food if he has got the habit of remaining without food for several days.
(2) The second condition is that one is habituated to live on eating grass, leaves and similar things.
These acts are not Godreliance. The saint Ibrahim Khawas used to take with him in journey needle,
scissor, rope and bucket and say: It does not harm God-reliance.
It is reported that a man of world renunciation left villages and towns and wished to stay over
hillocks and mountains for a week and said: I will not seek food from anybody until my Lord supplied
it. When he stayed there for seven days, he was about to die for want of food, but still it did not
come to him. Then he said: 0 my Lord, if you want me to live, send me such food as can keep me alive or
else take my life to Thee. Then God revealed to the Prophet of that time: Tell him by My honour, I will
not give you food till you return to inhabited places and keep company with men. Then he entered a town
and kept company with men who took food for him and drink. He thus saved his life, but doubt arose in
his mind. God sent him a voice from heaven: You have wished that you would change My law by your world
renunciation you do not know that whatever I give to My servants as food, I consider it more proper to
give it through the hands of My servants. If don't like to give it by the hand of My power. So to give
up the means of sustenance is go against the natural law of God and hence it is contrary to the
established laws of nature.
Question. What do you say about sitting idle without earning defending on God? Is it unlawful lawful or
better? Answer. When it is not unlawful to stay in jungles without destroying oneself, why will it be
unlawful to sit in towns without destroying one- self. Provision will come to him from such a source as
is unthinkable. But if he shuts up his doors preventing therein of any man, it will be unlawful. If he
is about to die, he must seek his food. The Prophet said: Had you relied on God with due reliance, He
would have provided you with food, as He provides it to beasts and birds. They go out in the morning
and return with full belly in the evening. Jesus Christ said: Look
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Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 217
at the bird. It does not sow crops, reap or store them. God provides them daily with food. If you say
that your bellies are big, then look to the cows, buffaloes and elephants. Abu Eakub Susi said: The
provisions of those who rely on God without efforts lie in the hands of men as those people remain busy
to get provision. A certain sage said : All people live in the middle of the provisions of God, but
some of them get them by begging some by efforts like merchants, some by industry and some by other
(3) What can be done more within less time. This means to adopt measures to get this benefit. This goes
out of God reliance as these people rely on causes of provision. The Prophet said those who rely on God
do not care for charms and enchantments. He did not say that they do not earns do not live with the
people and do not accept anything from anybody. Causes are two kindsone cause which takes out of God
reliance and another cause which does not take out of it.
In connection with these causes, there are three classes of God- reliant men. The first class included
saints like Ibrahim Khawas and others. They wandered in jungles without taking provisions They remained
relying on the mercy of God for a week or more without taking food. They used to take leaves of jungles
and such other things available in jungles. If these things were not available, they kept themselves
ready for death.
The second class of God-reliant men sit in a town or village or in their houses or mosques. They are
less than first class Godreliant men, still they rely on God. They receive food through the charity of
people, but their minds are kept turned up towards God and not towards men. The third class of
God-reliant men earn their livelihood in the name of God. Their minds do not turn away from God in
earning money. This look is not towards the pen but to the master of pen who passes orders in writing.
When Abu Bakr became Caliph, he still continued to go to markets with his bundle of cloth for sale. The
Muslims asked him: Why do you do this ? You have been invested with the power of rule after
Prophethood, He said : Don't prevent me from earning livelihood for the members of my family. If I
destroy them I would be able to destroy others. At last the people fixed an allowance for maintenance
of his family members. When he got the allowance he got opportunity for helping the general public
of the Muslims. It is seen from this that he, being a God reliant men, did not give up earning his
livelihood which was necessary. He did not however hoard. Abu Jafar Shaddad was the spiritual guide of
Hazrat Junaid Bagdadi and was a God reliant man. He said : I kept my God reliance secret for the last
20 years. I used to go to market daily and earn a dinar, but I did not go to bed leaving even a dinar,
I used to take bath in the public bath room for a kirat and spent all the money before the advent of
night. Hazrat Junaid did not talk of God-reliance before him. He used to say : I feel ashamed to speak
of the stages of God reliance before him.
Question. Which is better-to sit at home or to earn from outside?
Answer. Know, 0 readers that it is better for one it keep seated at home, if he gives up earning in
order to find time for good thought, Zikr and sincere divine service, and it is better to earn on the
part of one who becomes impatient if he keeps seated at home and loves the company of man.
Imam Ahmed once engaged a labourer poor man in a certain work. He ordered Abu Bakr Masuji to give the
labourer his waves and an additional sum but the labourer did not accept the additional sum. When The
labourer went away, Imam Ahmed said to him: Go to him and give him this sum as he will accept it now.
Then he went to him, gave him the sum and he accepted it. On being asked the reason, Imam Ahmed said :
He did not accept it first because he was greedy for it, When his greed when away he became dispaired
and accepted it. When Ibrahim Khawas looked to any man at the time of accepting gift or feared his
passion for that, he did not accept from him anything. He was asked : What wonder have you seen in you
? He said : I saw Hazrat Khizr in my company but I left his company fearing that my mind might be
addicted to him and as a result my God-reliance might go.
Question. What is the sign of not relying on wealth?
Answer. It is when wealth is lost by theft or where there is loss in business or when any danger
befalls a man, he remains contended and his peace of mind is not disturbed and his mind does not feel
aggrieved and his mind keeps calm as before. He who becomes impatient at the loss of property, becomes
contended if the gets it. The sage Basher Hafi used to make
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Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 219
weaver's shuttles and then he gave it up. The reason is that the saint Boadi wrote to him a letter
saying : I heard that you are taking the help of your livelihood by making weaver's shuttles. Have you
considered that if God deprives you of the power of hearing and sight, with what thing will you earn
your livelihood? When this fell in his mind, he gave up to make the implements of weaving. Some say
that when he was expert in making spinning wheel, the people began to come to him and he gave it up.
Some say that he gave it up after the death of his wife. The saint Sufiyan Saori had 40 dinars with
which he carried on business. When his wife died, he giftedd them away.
Question. Earning is impossible without money. How is it possible to be not addicted to money if one
Answer. Know it for certain that God supplies provisions to some persons even if they did not possess
any property or money. Some people are ruined when their property is destroyed or taken away by theft.
God does not do anything which has got no good in it. If he destroyed his property, it is for his good
or for the good of his religion. God has bestowed favours on him by giving him wealth. When he dies of
hunger, he should have this faith that it would be good for him in the Hereafter if he dies hungry. God
has disliked it for him without cutting his virtues. When he believes it, it is equal for him to
possess wealth or not to possess. Hazrat Omar said : I don't care whether I rise up in the morning poor
or rich, as I don't know which is better for me. Whose has not perfected his sure faith in' three
matters, God- reliance does not take firm root in him. For this Abu Solaiman Darani said to Ibn Abul
Hawaii : I have got in
every stage except sincere God-reliance and I take only the'smell of
God-reliance. This was inspite of his high position. HeAid'T could not acquire reliance of the highest
order God-reli*ice 4Oes not become perfect till one fully believes in three thit>gs : Them is no doer
except God, there is no giver of provisions "t God and it it is better for one what God destined for
him regarding his property, solvency birth and death. So the foundation of God-reliance is laid on the
strength of faith. All the religious stages of words and deeds are established on the foundation of
faith, In a word, the stage of Gdd-reliance is understandable, but they require heart and certain
faith. The Sage Sahal Tastari said :,He who attributes faults to earnings, finds faults with sunnat and
with the giving, up of earnings, finds fault with Tauhid.
Question. What is the medicine which will turn the mind from attachment to the outer causes towards
good conjecture of God?
Answer. The medicine is to know that bad conjecture is the prompting of the devil and good thought
comes from God. God says : The devil shows you fear of poverty and orders you to do evil acts, but God
promises you from Him forgiveness and abundance-2 : 268. A certain sage said: He who lives with bad
conjecture is greedy. When cowardice, weakness of mind and other outward causes unite in him, bad
conjecture prevails over him and God-reliance completely takes leave of him. It is reported that a sage
used to stay in the mosque and had no means of livelihood. The Imam of the mosque said to him one day :
If you earn. It would be good for you. He did not give any reply to him. Thus the Imam told him thrice.
At the fourth time, the sage said to him: A Jew living by the side of the mosque promised me two pieces
of loaf daily. The Imam said : If his promise is true., your stay in the mosque is good for you. The
sage said : 0 brother Imam had you not been Imam and not waited before God and the people with defect
in Tauhid, it would have been better for you, as you have put greater preference to the promise of the
Jew than the promise of God. The Imam of the mosque once asked a worshiper : Where do you get your food
? He said : 0 Imam, turn a little, Let me revise my prayer which I prayed behind you. God is the
trustee of the provision of all.
(2) It is reported that Hazrat Ibrahim Adham had a servant named'Huzaifa Marashi. People asked him :
What wonderful act of Ibrahim Adham have you seen? He said: We were in a journey to Mecca for several
days during which we could procure no food. We then reached Kufa and took shelter to a big mosque
there. Ibrahim looked at me and said : 0 Huzaifa,, you are striken with hunger. I confessed it. He said
: Bring me an inkpot and paper. I brought them to him and he wrote. In the name of the Most Beneficent
and Most Compassionate God. Thou art our object of love in every circumstance, and the goal of
everybody is Thou. Then he wrote these verses : I praise Thee I am grateful to Thee, I remember Thee, I
am hungry, I am thirsty, I am without cloth. I am guarantee for the above three out of six? 0 Lord,
Thou art guarantee for the rest three. My praise for Three is like a flame of fire. Protect Thy servant
from entry into the Fire.
Then he handed over the paper to me and said : Go out with this paper, don't mind anything except God
and hand over the
220 TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL Vol-IV
paper to one with whom you meet first. Then I went out and handed over the paper to a man riding on an
ass. He wept at this and said Where is the writer of the letter ? I said : He is in a certain mosque.
He handed over me a purse of 600 dinars. Then I met a man to whom I asked about the rider of the ass.
He said that he is a Christian. I came to Ibrahim and told him all the details to which he said : Don't
touch it. He will come presently. After a while the Christian came to Ibrahim Kissed his head and
(3) Abu Eakub Basari said : I was without food at Mecca for ten days. Then I thought to go out and went
by a hillock to find something to appease my hunger. I found a turnip thrown on the path way and took
it- but a voice came from within myself: You are without food for the last ten days, but at last your
fate has supplied you a rotten turnip. I threw it away and returned to the mosque when an unknown
person advanced to me and took his seat and handed over to me a box containing biscuits sugar and
kernel of almond and said : This is for you. I said : Why have you selected me for this ? He said :
Know that I was in sea for ten days in a journey. When my boat was about to sink, I took an oath that I
would present this thing to a servant whom I will meet first if God saves me from this trouble. You are
the first man who came to my notice. I said : Open it and accept it. Then he opened it and it contained
biscuits, kernel, almond and refined sugar. I took one handful from this and a handful from that and
said to him : The rest is my present to your companions. I accepted it. Then I said to myself :
Provision has come to you easily, but you were searching it for the last ten days near the village.
(4) The saint Momshed Dinawari said: I had debts for which I became troubled in mind. One day I saw in
a dream that one man said to me: 0 miser, you have given Me such amount of debt your duty is to accept
and My duty is to give. Thereafter I did not take accounts from the seller of vegetables or meat or
(5) The sage Bunan Hammad said: I started towards Mecca from Egypt. I had sufficient provisions with
me. A woman came to me and said: 0 Bunan, you are a labourer. You bear burdens on your shoulder and
think that God will Plot give you provision. He said: Then I threw away my provisions. Three days
passed away consequitively over me without any food. Then I found a silver ornament on the way and said
to myself: I shall bear it till its
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES . 221
owner comes perh4ps he may give me something of it after I return it to him. Suddenly the woman came to
me and: You are a tradesman, you say that you would take something of it, if its owner comes. Then she
gave me some dirhams and said: Spend it. I took them and came to Mecca.
(6) A slave was required for the sage Bunani. He told his brothers clearly about it. They collected the
price of the slave. They said: The caravan of slave women is coming and you will purchase according to
your choice. When the caravan arrived, they all selected a slave woman and said: This slave woman would
be better for him. They told her master: What is her price? He said: This slave woman is not for sale.
When they pressed him for sale he said: This slave woman is for Bunan Hammad. I took her for him from
Samarkand to present her to him. I took her to Bunan and told him all the details.
(7) It has been reported that in ancient times a man was in journey with a loaf. He said: If I eat it,
I will die. God entrusted an angel to him and said: If he eats it, give him more provision and don't
give him any other thing. He carried the loaf but did not eat it till this death. It lay before him at
the time of his death.
(8) Abu Sayeed Kharraj said: I entered a jungle without taking food and became hungry. I saw a village
from a distance and started towards it being pleased. Then I thought within myself: Have I relied on
others? So I took oath not to enter the village. I will go there if I am taken there by anybody. I dug
a heapful of sands and covered my body upto my breast. At mid night I heard a voice saying: 0
inhabitants of the village, go to such a person. Then a group of men came and took me out and carried
me to the village.
(9) It has been reported that a man kept himself seated before the door of Omar. An unseen voice said :
0 man, have you taken refuge to Omar and not to God ? Go and turn the Quran, as it will make you free
from want from the door of Omar. Then the man disappeared from that place. Hazrat Omar also lost him.
He took to silence and engaged himself in divine worship. One day Hazrat Omar came to him and said : I
was eager for you. Why did you come from my place ? He said: I recite the Quran and that has made me
free from seeking assistance from Omar and his family. Hazrat Omar said : May God shower blessings on
222 TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL Vol-IV
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 223
have you found in the Quran ? He said : I saw therein : There is in the sky your provision and what has
been promised to you. Hazrat Omar said : My provision is in the sky and I am seeking it in the earth.
Saying this, he began to weep and said : You have spoken the truth. Afterwards Hazrat Omar used to come
to him and sit with him.
Abu Hamzah Khorasani said: I started for pilgrimage in a year. While I was travelling I fell down in a
well. My mind sought help of others. I said : By God. I will not do it. When this was crossing m mind,
I found two men passing by the well. One man said to another : Come and let us shut up the cover of
this well, so that no man may fall into it. So they took bamboos and chatai and closed its mouth. I
then wished to raise a cry. Sometimes after, an animal came and removed the cover from the mouth of the
well and extended its foot into the well. I caught it and it took me out of the well. I found that it
is a ferocious animal. Then it went away. Then there came a voice from heaven : 0 Abu Hamzah, is it not
better that I have saved you through a beast of destruction ? I then began to walk singing
Shame of Thee prevents me from expressing love,
What I got from thee satisfied my thirst,
"I find Thy kindness expressed in all my actions.
Thou hast shown me kindness in matters, open and secret. Thou gave me news of secret thing to get Thy
love. Being fearful of Thee and trembling. I took to solitude. That fear brought me near Thee, endeared
Me to Thee. Thou hast kept me alive engrossed in Thy love.. These are some few instances of
GOD-RELIANCE OF A MAN HAVING FAMILY. Know. 0 readers, that he who has got family has got permission to
give up loneliness, as his God-reliance does not become perfect without two things-(1) power to keep
patience without showing any anxiety in case of hunger for a week and (2) power to remain satisfied
over destiny and God's provision. He will be able to bear the pangs of hunger till death even if his
provision does not come because he knows that even though death and hunger are injurious in the world,
they are better in the next world. He thinks that he is being led to the provision of the next world
and that he is given such a disease for the sake of which his death will come and he will remain
satisfied with it. He thinks also that
whatever provisions is destined for him in the world, he will get. His God-reliance becomes perfect
with this thought. But he is not allowed to give trouble to his family members by his hunger, as he is
allowed to teach them the rewards of suffering the pangs of hunger.
It is reported that Abu Torab Nokshibi said to a man who was about to eat the outer cover of water
melon after remaining hungry for three days : Your Sufism has not come out to be true. So stick to
market. In other words, Sufism cannot be acquired without God-reliance and it cannot be purified unless
one has got patience of forbearing the pangs of hunger for more than three days. The saint Abu Ali
Rozbari said : When a poor man says after five days hunger, l am hungry tell him to earn it in markets.
He who is baffled in earning even after efforts is not deprived of his earning. Don't you look to the
foetus in mother's womb that though it moves its naval chord keeps attached to its mother, so that it
may take its food ? It is not made possible by the skill of the foetus. When it becomes separate, He
makes its mother overflowed with affection for the child, so that she may maintain it. Then till the
teeth of the child appears, He supplies its food from the breast of its mother. That does not require
chewing, but the child suckles its mother's breast. Is it for the skill of the mother or of God ? When
he becomes fit for chewing food teeth appear with which it chews food just like a mill. When he comes
of age the causes of travelling in the next worldbecome easy for him. God gave in the minds of the
Muslims kindness for the poor. Before this, only mother showed affection to the child but now there are
hundreds to show him kindness. Before that they did not look at him as they found their parents
maintaining him, When they find him bereft of parents, God enkindles in them the sense of charity.
Nowhere was it seen that an orphan boy died of starvation although he had none to look after. God
maintains him through the kind people and He also creates kindness in them.
A Poet says:
The pen of destiny runs always, Movement and stay all equal,
Think of sustenance without our knowledge. Who does supply foetus with food?
224 TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL Vol-IV
Your duty is to remain satisfied with little provision and food
which are necessary for you, because it will come to you though you flee away from it. now it is the
duty of God to send you provision through the intermediary of men which you have not conceived. God
says : God finds out a way for one who fears God and supplies your provision from a source which you
cannot conceive 65: 2. But he never guaranteed you to supply fowl or other tasteful dishes. He
guarantees such food as is barely necessary for you in your life. God says : There is provision for you
in heaven and what has been promised to you. The secrets of heaven can not be enquired into. For this
reason, when a group of man approached Junaid Bagdadi, he said to them : What do you search ? They said
: We search provision. He said : If you know that He forgot you, you can remind Him of it. They said :
We shall sit tight at home depending on God and see what happens. He said : If you rely on God in order
to examine Him. you will be entertaining doubt. They asked : Then what is the remedy ? He said : Give
it up. The saint Ahmed bin-Isa said : I was hungry while I was in the vast area of a jungle. I became
so much weak that even I could not pray to God for food. I said to myself : This is not the action of
the God-reliant man. My spirit told me to pray to God for patience. As I was about to pray, I heard a
voice from heaven:
"He thinks he came very close to Me,
I never do harm who comes close to Me, With efforts at places he prays to Me,
He thinks I see him not, nor does he see Me."
I understand from this that he whose passion is weak but heart strong remains always satisfied and has
got faith in God even though he is about to die. Death is inevitable. It comes also to him whose mind
is not satisfiednln a word, contentment on the one hand a fld obedience to the Grantor on the other
bring God reliance. Trust him who stood surety for those who remain satisfied through the current
causes and examine to see the truth of His promise. You will find then what a wonderful provision comes
to you which is not even within your conception. Don't wait for causes in your God reliance, rather
wait for the Controller of causes as you don't look to the pen for writing but to the mind of the
writer as it is the mind which moves the pen. The first cause is One. Look to Him and not to the
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 225
causes. This is the condition of God reliance for one who takes journey in jungle land without
provisions or in towns and villages unrecognisid. He who engages himself in divine worship and pursuit
of knowledge is a true religious man inspite of the kind of food he eats and the kind of cloth he
wears. These kinds of things come to him unasked for.
To think for provision is weakness and a cause of harm. Some Persian Emperor asked a wise sage : Why do
the fools become wealthy and the intelligent poor?
He said: The great God wished that the people should recognise Him. If he had supplied provision to
every learned man and deprived every fool from it, they would have thought that only wisdom has
supplied him provision. When they find it to the contrary they come to know that there is a great Giver
of provision which has got no connection with the external causes. The poet sings :
If provision flowed over the hillock of Haza,
Birds and beasts would have perished not knowing it.
CONDITION OF THE GOD-RELAYING MAN ABOUT CAUSPS: The people in relation to God are lire a company of
beggars whq. wait in the courtyard of an Emperor for food, Before them, the numerous servants of the
emperor came out. The emperor ordered them to give some beggars one loaf, some two loafs and not to
deprive anybody. He ordered a proclaimer who proclaimed in the'name of the emperor"Keep silent and when
my servants go out to you don't come to them, rather sit in one place in peace, and the servants will
take food to you as ordered. Whose comes to the servants and takes two loafs giving them trouble, one
servant will follow him after the opening of the courtyard and he will be entrusted to him and
punishment will be meted out to him up a to a certain time but I will keep it secret. He who does not
give trouble to the servants but remains satisfied with only one loaf coming from the servants and
remains quiet, I will give him such reward on a day on which others will be punished. He who remains in
his place and takes two loafs as ordered shall get no punishment or-reward. If my servants does not
find any one, they will not give him anything and he will remain hungry for the night, not being
displeased with the servants nor informing them
226 TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL Vol-IV
of the King's order. I will appoint such a man as my minister and I will transfer my power to him.
After this proclamation, the beggars were divided into four classes. Belly prevailed over one section
and they did not care for the promised punishment. They said : We are now hungry and there is a great
distance between today and tomorrow. They went hurriedly to the servants, inflicted on them trouble and
snatched from them each two loafs. Punishments were given to them within the promised time. They
afterwards repented but to no effect.
(2) The second class of beggars gave up the company of the servants being fearful of punishment, but
each took two loafs beings pressed by hunger. They escaped punishment but did not get rewards.
(3) The third class of beggars said : We shall sit before the servants, so that they may not for get
us. When they will give us, we shall accept and remain satisfied, so that we may get rewards.
(4) The fourth class of beggalls kept themselves concealed in a corner of the courtyard and went out of
the sight of the servants. They said : If they enquire of us and give us, we shall remain satisfied
with one loaf only. If they forget us, we shall bear the pangs of hunger at night. We may then get the
posts of ministers and keep near the empergr.
The servants went to the beggars from every, corner and gave everybody one loaf. Then it continued for
days together. After some days, those beggars who kept themselves concealed in a corner of the
courtyard and who did not fall to the notice of the servants passed a long time hungry. Two of them
said Had the servants seen us, we would have- loafs and thus our hunger would have been appeased. The
third beggar kept silent up to the next morning and got the post of minister. Thus is the simile of all
The meaning of the courtyard is this world's life, the meaning of the door of the courtyard is death,
the meaning of the indefinite promised subject is the day of recurrection, the meaning of the promised
post of a minister is the provision of martyrdom for God-reliance on account of hunger. It will
continue upto the day of resurrection, as the martyrs are alive
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 227
before their Lord and are provided with provisions. He who keeps company with the servants depends on
cause or intermediary. The servants stand for the causes or the means. Those who keep seated before the
servants in the open courtyard are those who keep themselves in mosques and monasteries in towns and
villages. Those who keep themselves concealed in a corner are thosl' who travel in jungles relying on
God. Causes follow them and provisions come to them without search. Men are divided into these four
classes. Ninty per cent adopt the means and causes. Out of the remaining ten, nearly seven persons live
in towns and are well-known. The remaining three sojourn in jungles, Out of these three, two are
displeased with causes and only one reaches the limit of nearness. This was the case in the earliest
period of Islam, but at present there is not a single man out of every ten thousand persons, who can
give up the means and causes.
(2) The second mode of putting God-reliance in to practice is saving. There are three conditions of a
man who get wealth either by inheritance or by earning or by any other means. The first condition is to
adopt everything up to the measure of necessity, to eat when hungry to put on cloth to cover nakedness
and to take a house only for habitation in absence of any house. Such a person keeps away from other
properties and materials. He takes only what is necessary, but does not hoard. This is the highest
stage of God-reliance. The second condition is opposite to the first stage. He gives up God-reliance if
he stores up provision for more than one year. A certain sage said that there are three kinds of
animals who store up provision-rats ants and men.
The third stage of God-reliance is of a person who hoards up provisions for 40 days or less tban'40
days. Sahal Tastari ousted him from the limit of God-reliance. Ibrahim Khawas also entertained the same
opinion. Abu Taleb Makki retained him within the limit. Every good thing has got its beginning and end.
Those who reach the end are called "Sabegin" or those going in advance. Those who remain in the initial
stage are called the companions of fortune (Ashabul Yemin). There are different stages of these
companions and also of Sabeqin. The fortunate persons of first stage are attached to the persons of the
lowest stage going in advance. So under the circumstances there is no meaning in fixing time and
measures of saving. The real thing is
228 TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL Vol-IV
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 229
that God-reliance does not become perfect without curtailing hopes in case saving is given up. The
lowest stage of hope is one day and one night or even lower than that and the highest stage of hope is
the life span of a man. There is a great deal of difference in it. Hazrat Moses fasted consequitively
for 40 days in order to attain spin itual height. Without that, he could not leave reached it according
to the laws of God, as the Prophet said : God prepared the earth to create Adam for 40 days, as the
earth required these days to be fit for making Adam, In short he who hoards up for more then 40 days
goes out of God reliance for his weak mind and for his attachment to external causes. God is the
ultimate cause of provision and food-stuffs are only a means to it. If reliance is placed upon
provisions of a year, how can there be God reliance ? He who hoards for two months only is certainly
higher than he who hoards for a year. He who -does not hoard at all is the best.
There is a welt known story that the Prophet once ordered Hazrat Ali and Hazrat Osman to wash the dead
body of a poor man. They washed and buried him. Thereafter the Prophet said to his companions : He will
be raised up on the Resurrection Day in such a condition that his face will be brilliant like the moon
in full moon light-night. Had not there been in him a habit, his face would have been radiant like the
sun. We asked : 0 Prophet of God what is it? he said : He fasted, prayed prayers and remembered God
much. When the winter came, he used to store up cloths for the following summer and when the summer e,
he used to store winter cloth for the following winter. Th the Prophet said : I am seeing little of
sure faith and determined patience in what has been given to you. The business man has not been told to
give up business and the industrialist to give up industry but they were not enjoined to keep
themselves very busy in those things. Rather he called all persons towards God and showed them such a
path which will help them towards success and salvation and turn their mind from the world. The best
thing with which one can engage himself is mind. So it is necessary for a man of weak faith to store up
what is necessary as it is proper for a man of sure faith not to store anything. This is necessary for
a man without family.
God-reliance of a man having family. A man having family will not go out of the limit of God-reliance
if he stores up
provisions for one year, as by this his weak faith and his mind can be kept quiet. But if he goes
beyond that limit, his God-reliance will be destroyed. The meaning of God-reliance is firm faith in
Tauhid, quiet mind in God's mercy and sure faith in the well-controlled laws of God. The Prophet used
to store up provisions for his family for one year. He again prohibited Omme Ayman and others for
storing even for tomorrow. Hazrat Bilal stored up one piece of bread for his breaking fast. The Prophet
prohibited him from doing it and said : 0 Bilal, Spend and fear no poverty from God. The Prophet said :
When you are asked for, don't prohibit. When you are given, don't conceal it. Follow the right men of
God reliance. The Prophet had such small hope of life that after passing calls of nature he took the
method of Tayammam even though water was close by and said Who will give me guarantee that I will be
able to get time to reach that water ? When the Prophet stored up, his God-reliance was not reduced a
little as he did not depend on the stored up thing. The reason that the Prophet stored up for one year
for his family members, rather it was a way of life shown for his followers of weak faith. So it
appears that hoarding is beneficial to some but harmful to others. It is clear from the following Hadis
of Abu Omamah Baheli. On of the inmates of Suffah died but his coffin cloth was not found. The Prophet
said : Examine his cloth. On search, two dinars were found in his cloth. The Prophet said : He will
have two spots. He did not tell it in case of a rich Muslim.
Hussain Magzali one of the disciples of Bashar Hafi said : I was one noon near Basher Hafi. An old
emaciated man came to him and Basher Hafi stood up in his honour. I did not see him standing for any
other person than him.' Then Basher Hafi handed over me one handful of silver coins and said : Bring
for us delicious foods as fast as possible. He did not tell us this thing before. I brought delicious
foods and placed them and he ate with him. I did not see him taking food with others before this. We
ate to our satisfaction and yet there remained surplus food. The man took the surplus food in his cloth
and went away. I wondered at it as it did not appear to me decent. Basher Hafi told me : Perhaps it did
not appear to you to be good. I said : It is true. Why is it that he took the surplus foods without
your permission? Basher Hafi said : He is our friend named Fathe Musalli. He came from Masud to day and
met us. He wanted to teach us that when God-reliance becomes perfect, there is no harm in hoarding.
230 TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL Vol-IV
The third mode of putting God-reliance into practice is to
adopt means to remove an impending danger. God-reliance is
not impaired by that. It is prohibited to sleep in places infected by
ferocious beasts or near a hillock, or near a torrent, or a wall
inclined to fall. The causes are three-(1) what is absolutely necessary, (2) what is begotten by guess
and (3) what arises from idea. It is one of the conditions of God-reliance to give up causes arising
out of ideas. To remove injuries by adopting spells and charms is included within ideas. The Prophet
said that one cannot be Go-reliant if he does not give up charms. Spells and enchantments. He did not
prohibit to use warm clothes in cold countries. God says : Take Him as wakil and keep patience at what
they say. God says : They said : We shall keep patience at your oppression on us. God-reliant persons
depend upon God-14:16. God says : So forget their oppression and depend on God-33: 48. God says : Have
patience as the Prophets with firm determination kept patience. God says : Those doers are good who
kept patience and those who rely on their Lord. These verses were revealed in connection with the
oppression of men. It is not God- reliance not to try to prevent the injuries of serpents, ferocious
beasts and such other beings except men. Similarly God- reliance is not impaired if means are adopted
to remove injuries to properties. The Prophet said to a desert Arab : Why have you let loose your
camel? He said : I let it loose depending on God. He said : Tie it and depend on God. God says : Take
recourse to your care. He said describing the prayer of fear : Let them take their arms. God says.
Prepare for them instruments of strength and the tie of horses as far as possible-8 : 60. God said to
Moses : Travel at night with My servants. This means that he should go out at night to escape search of
his foes. The object of the Prophet's hiding in a cave when leaving Mecca is to ward off injuries from
Question. There are stories of a group of saints that they climbed upon tigers which submitted
themselves to them. In answer to that it may be said that that stage of God reliance should not deceive
you. If the stories are correct, it should not be followed as they were then in the highest stage and
these are included within miracles. There is no such condition of God- reliance.
Question. Is there any sign of that stage ? In answer to that I might say that the person who reaches
that stage does not require
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 231
such signs but one of the signs is that your companion, dog of anger, will remain subdued to you. If it
submits to you, it shall not bite without your signal. Your condition sometimes will reach such a high
stage that even tiger, the king of beasts, will be subdued to you. When your own dog will be subdued to
you, don't be anxious to subdue the other dogs.
Question. When a God-reliant man keeps arms as a means of protection from the enemies and keeps the
doors closed as protection from thiefs how can he be God-reliant?
Answer. He will be God-reliant on account of knowledge and mental condition. Regarding knowledge, he
should know that even if the doors are closed the thief can not be prevented from his acts of theft. If
God does not drive him out, he can't be driven out. How many doors are closed for fear of thieves, but
that also does not do any benefit. How many armed men are murdered inspite of their arms. So don't
basically rely on these causes but rely on the Master of causes. With regard to the mental condition,
it must be believed that what has been lotted cannot be blotted. On this thought, he remains satisfied
and says: 0 God, if you have engaged anyone to take my properties, I shall remain satisfied and that
property goes in your path. I don't know whether this is my provision or the provision of another
according to destiny. I am satisfy with what you do. It is also your order that I have closed the door
or kept it under lock and key. 0 Creator of causes, I rely on nobody except on Thee.
When there is such state of his mind and his knowledge as above described, his arming and closing of
doors will not take him out of the limit of God-reliance.
Question. Is there any property of a God-reliant man that can be stolen? Answer. Yes, such as utensils
for food, cups for drink, jar for ablution, vessel for keeping food stuffs, stick for driving out
enemies and such other necessary things.
Some rules of God reliant man regarding property. He is to observe some rules in protecting his
property if he goes out.
(1) He will close his doors and will not take excessive care such as telling neighbors to close them
with many locks. Malek-bin Dinar did not close up his doors with locks and keys,
232 TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL Vol-IV
but used to tie it with rope and say : If dogs would not have entered, I would not have tied them up.
(2) He will not keep such properties at home which may raise temptation of thieves. Once the ruler
Mugirah sent some Zakat properties to Malek bin-Diner who told him : Take it. I have got no need of it.
He said : Why? The saint said : The devil raises doubt in my mind that thiefs may take it. I don't like
that thiefs should commit sins and my mind turns to another thing owing to the machination of the
devil. Abu Sufiyan said hearing this: This is the weakness of the mind of a' Sufi. He adopted
renunciation and so he can't take it.
(3) At the time of going out he shall frame his mind in such a way that if even if his properties are
taken away by thieves he would remain satisfied with the decrees of God. He should say What will be
taken by a thief will be lawful for him or it will go in the way of God. If the thief is poor, it is a
gift to him from me. If he is not poor, I will get benefit in three ways. Has theft will prevent him
from committing sin. Similarly he will not commit theft in another's house if he gets my properties.
(4) The forth rule is that he shall not be sorry if his property is stolen, rather he should be pleased
and say : Had there been no good in it, God would not have taken it away. If it is gifted in the way of
God, there should be no search about it, as he has sent it in advance for his sake. It is related that
one camel of Hazrat Omar was stolen. He became tired of searching it. Then he said : I gift it away in
the path of God. He entered the mosque and prayed two rakats. Then a man came and said : 0 Abdur
Rahman, your camel lies here. He put on his shoes and said : I am seeking forgiveness from God. Then he
sat down. He was asked : Will you not go and take your camel ? He said: I gifted it away in the path of
God. A certain sage said : I asked a Muslim in dream after he was dead What treatment has God meted out
to you ? He said : He forgave me and accommodated me in Paradise. The house reserved for me in Paradise
has been given to me and I saw it. The narrator said that inspite of that he was said. I asked: You
have been forgiven and you have entered Paradise yet why are you sad ?He heaved a sigh and said : Yes,
I shall remain in such condition till the Resurrection day. I asked : What is its reason ? He said :
When I was shown my place in Paradise, I was shown in the highest Paradise such a place which I have
never seen. I was overjoyed at
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 233
it and I was about to enter there. But some one said to me : Go away from this, it is not for you. This
is for one who keeps God's way alive. I asked : What is the meaning of keeping alive God's path ? I was
told : You said for a thing : This is gifted in the way of God and then you accepted that thing. Had
you filled up the path of God, I would have filled up your path.
It was reported that a Derbesh slept by a man at Mecca who had a purse of money. the man got up from
sleep and found his purse stolen. He attributed it to the Derbesh who said : How much money was there
in your purse ? The Derbesh went to his house and paid the money to him. His friend latter on informed
the man that out of joke they took the purse. When the Derbesh was asked to take back his money, he
refused to take it and said Take it as lawful and good property. I will not take back the money which I
spent in the way of God. He did not accept it. They repeatedly requested him to accept it and then he
called his son and told him to distribute it to the poor and he did accordingly. This was the practice
and conduct of the early sages.
(5) The fifth rule is the lowest stage. He shall not curse the thief who takes his property. If he does
that, his God-reliance is spoiled. If he feels sorry for what he missed, his renunciation is destroyed.
The Prophet said : He who curses his oppressor, takes revenge. It is reported that a horse of Rabi bin
Kasim was stolen. It cost him 20 thousand dirhams. He was saying his prayer at that time. He did not
give up his prayer nor did he search for it. A company of men came to him to show sympathy. He told
them : I saw that a thief was taking away the camel. He was asked : Why did you not catch him ? He said
: The prayer in which I was then was dearer to me than the horse. When they began to chase the thief,
he said : Don't pursue him talk good as I gifted it to him. A certain sage among them was asked when
his property was stolen : Will you not curse one who oppressed you ? He said : I don't want to be a
helper of the devil in the work. He was told Don't you wish to get back your property ? He said : I
will not accept it, nor look to him as I gifted it to him.
Another sage was told : Curse one who has oppressed you. He said: Nobody oppressed me. He oppressed his
own soul. Is it not punishment on him? I don't want to inflict more punishment to him. Once a man was
rebuking Hajjaj-bin-Eusuf for his oppression in presence of a certain sage. He said : Don't immerge
234 TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL Vol-IV
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 235
yourself in his rebuke as God will take revenge on Hajjaj on behalf of the man whose honour he
(6) The sixth rule is that he shall be sorry for the sin of the thief and for his punishment and shall
express gatefulness to God for the reason that the owner was not made an oppressor but an oppressed one
and for the reason that his religion has not been impaired but his world. Once a man complained to a
learned man that his goods were robbed by a dacoit. He said : You should not feel sorry, for your goods
went to a person who thinks that looted property is lawful as he was not given religious instruction.
The property of Ali-bin-Fazil was stolen while he was making circuit round the Ka'ba. His father saw
him weeping and said : Are you weeping for your property ? He said : By God, I don't weep for that, but
I weep for the thief, as he will be asked about it on the Resurrection Day and he will have no excuse
at that time.
(4) Fourth mode of putting God-reliance into practice. There are three kinds of medicines to remove a
disease-(1) Sure medicine. In other words, if it is used, there will be cure, for instance if the
medicine of water is used, the disease of thirst will surely disappear. (2) Medicine by guess. By this
medicine, a disease may be cured or may not be cured as cupping. (3) Wellknown medicine. It is neither
certain, nor uncertain, but cure is obtained according to the attribute of a thing. It is not within
God-reliance to give up the first kind of medicine, rather it is unlawful not to take it at the time of
death. If the medicine of the third kind is given up, one does not go out of God-reliance, as the
Prophet instructed a God-reliant man to give it up. The causes of the third class are charms,
enchantments and such other things. To believe and rely on them is utter foolishness. The middle stage
is to apply medicine after consulting physicians. This does not lessen God-reliance, nor is it
prohibited, but it is less than sure medicine.
TO TAKE MEDICINE IS NOT OPPOSED TO GODRELIANCE: This appears from the teachings and practices of the
prophet. He said: There is no such disease as has got no medicine. He who knows it knows it and he who
does not know it, does not know it. But death has got no medicine. The Prophet said: 0 servants of God,
take to medicine as God created disease and also created its cure. The Prophet was asked about
medicines and spells and enchantments: Can they annul the decree God? He said : It is also
God's decree. The Prophet said in a well known tradition Whatever angels I passed by (in my journey to
heaven) they told me: Order your followers to take to cupping. He ordered for, its extensive use. The
Prophet also said to take cupping on 17,19 and 21st day of the month, or else one may perish owing to
blood pressure. Some say that blood pressure causes death in many cases. By order of God, it causes
death and by its eviction, one can escape death. There is no distinction between ejection of injurious
blood from body and to drive it out from a house. To give it up is not God reliance. It is pouring
water upon fire in order to extinguish it or it is like preventing injury when it is about to come in a
house. There is one tradition in which the Prophet said : He who takes cupping on Tuesday on the 17th
of every month cures his disease of a year.
He ordered many companions to use medicine. He operated upon Saad bin Muaz by taking out a vein. He
cauterized Saad-bin Jarabah. Once there was pain in the eye of Hazrat Ali. The Prophet said to him :
Don't eat this fresh date. Eat vegetables with bread of thin wheat. It is better for you. There was
pain in the eye of Suhail. He saw him eating dried grapes and said : You have got pain in your eye and
you are eating dried grapes ? He said : I am eating from another side. The Prophet smiled a little at
his word. The Prophet used to apply collyrinth in his eye every night, take cupping every month and
take purgative every year. He took medicine many times to cure the sting of scorpion and other animals.
It is said that when revelation used to come to him he felt pain in his head and applied Mehdi to it.
Sometimes he applied dried earth after it was powdered to an wound.
It is reported that when once Moses fell ill, a man of Banu Israil came to him, diagnosed his disease
and said to him : If you use this medicine you will surely recover, He said : I will not take medicine
until I am cured without medicine. His illness as a result continued for a long time. Then the Prophet
said to Moses There is a well-known experimented medicine for this disease. We treated it with that
medicine and cured ourselves. He said : I will not use this medicine. So his illness began to increase.
Then God revealed to him : By My honour and glory, I will not cure you till you use the medicine
prescribed by the people. Then he said to them : Give me the medicine you have prescribed for me. Then
he took the medicine and recovered. This raised doubt in
236 TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL Vol-IV
his mind and then God revealed to him: You wanted to baffle My laws by relying on Me. Who else except
myself created the quality or recovery in medicine?
It is reported that when a certain prophet complained of illness, God revealed to him: Eat eggs.
Another Prophet complained of weakness and God revealed to him: Eat meat and drink milk, as both give
strength. It is reported that a party of men complained to their Prophet that they did not get
beautiful children born to them. God then revealed to him : Tell them that they should give their
pregnant women nutritious 'Safarzal' as food, as by this their children will be beautiful and they
should give it to them on the third and fourth months of their pregnancy as God then makes their
figure. They should give their pregnant women 'safarzal' and nutritious fresh grapes to eat. From this
it is understood that the Creator of causes bound His laws with those who observe them in a chain, so
that His skill may be disclosed. Medicine is a cause, which has been subdued like other causes just as
bread is a medicine for hunger, water is a medicine for thirst. So also oxymel is a medicine for anamea
and scammony is a medicine for purgation.
If the God-reliant man look to the Creator of causes and not to the causes, medicines and physicians,
his God-reliance is not impaired if he takes medicines. It is reported that the Prophet Moses prayed :
0 my Lord, from whom do the diseases come and cure? God said : They come from Me. Moses said : Then why
are physicians necessary? He said : They get their provisions by virtue of their treatment and give
solace to the hearts of My servants. Then My cure comes or my fixed law (death)
So God-reliance in the matter of medicine is an affair of knowledge and thoughts of mind. In fact to
give up treatment is not God-reliance. In certain circumstances however, to give medicine is not
opposed to Prophet's ways. The Prophet sometimes did not take any medicine. It is reported that Hazrat
Abu Bakr once fell ill and he was requested to call for a physician. He said : The Physician looked to
me and said : I will do what I like. Abu Darda was asked in his illness : What do you think? He said :
I am thinking about my sins. He was asked : What do you hope? He said : I hope for forgiveness from my
Lord. They said Shall we call for you a physician? He said: The Physician gave me this disease. There
was pain in the eye of Abu Zarr. He was told :
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 237
If you had called a physician, it would have been better. He said
I am engaged in another affair. He was told : If you had prayed for recovery of your illness to God, it
would 1-ave been better. He said : I pray from Him more urgent matters.
Once Rabi-bin Khasim had an attack of small pox. We asked him : Take medicine. He said : I am anxious,
I am remembering the stories of A'd . Thamud, inhabitants of the valley and other nations. How many
physicians were there among them, but the physicians as well as the patients all perished and no chants
and enchantments came to any use. Ahmed-bin Hambal used to say For one who believes in God-reliance and
walks in this path, I think it is better to give up medicine and in case of his disease not to call any
physician. Sahal Tastari was once asked : When does God-reliance of a man become purified? He said :
His God-reliance becomes purified when injury enters into his body and loss in his property and yet he
does not look to it.
THERE ARE SEVERAL CAUSES FOR
GIVING UP MEDICINE
(1) The first cause is impending death. Such a person gives up medicine in fear of impending death, as
he thinks that no medicine will be useful at that time. This fear of death sometimes comes to one in
the form of dream, sometimes in the form of strong imagination and sometimes in the form of Khashf or
spiritual insight, Hazrat Abu Bakr gave up medicine for this reason, as his spiritual eye was then
opened. He told Ayesha that what was then in her mother's womb was a female child. Thereafter she gave
birth to a female child.
(2) TLe second cause is one's engagement in the thoughts of the next world and for that reason he
forgets the pangs of his disease. Hazrat Abu Zarr said : I am engaged in other thoughts. Abu Darda said
also in similar strain. He said : I am complaining of my sins. He was more anxious for his sins than
for the pangs of his body. Some person asked him about what he would eat. He said : It is the
remembrance of the Ever-living and Ever-lasling. He was asked : We asked you about maintenance of your
human body, He said : That is knowledge. He was asked. We ask you of food. He said : Remembrance of God
is food. They said : We ask you of such food is nourishes the body He said : What connection has it got
with the body? Body is insignificant, withhold your
238 TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL Vol-IV
hand from protecting my body. When there is every disease in the body, leave it to its Creator whether
you have power over it or not. Have you not seen that when there is any defect in any machinery, it is
left to its maker or manufacturer for its repair?
(3) The third cause is constant and continuing disease. He who has got continuing disease and is not
cured by any medicine, he does not take further medicines or charms and enchantments. A God reliant man
gives up medicine in that case. To this effect, Rabi- bin Khashem said : I remember the A'd and Thamud
tribes, there were physicians among them but they also perished with their patients.
(4) The fourth cause is to think that diseases are causes of virtues,. A God-reliant man by giving up
medicine wants to make the disease lasting as he will get rich rewards if he can have patience to bear
it. The Prophet said with regard to the rewards of diseases and disasters. We are a company of
Prophets. The greatest dangers and difficulties befell on us, next on the virtuous people like us, next
on the virtous people like them. A man is tried by the degree of faith he possesses. If his faith is
firm, dangers on him are severe. If his faith is weak, dangers on him are less. There is in the
tradition that God will examine His servant by dangers and difficulties, as one of you examines his
gold in fire. Some of them come out pure and free from faults like gold, some less than them, some come
out black being burnt. The Prophet said : When God loves a man, he examines him. If he remains patient,
He chooses him. If he remains satisfied He loves him. The Prophet said : You love to be like a strayed
ass, so that you may not get any disease or ailment.
Ibn Mas'ud said : You will see the mind of a believer sound and his body unsound and the mind of a
hypocrite unsound and body sound.
When the rewards of diseases are great, a party of believers love diseases and search them for getting
rewards of patience. For this reason, they don't call physicians. The Prophet said : God says to His
angels : Write for My virtuous servant his divine service, as he is tied up with My chain. If I free
him from the tie, I will give him better flesh in place of this flesh and better blood in place of this
blood. If I take away his life. I will take his life to attract him towards my mercy. The Prophet said
: hose does
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 239
divine service inspite of his passions, it is the best divine service. In explaining this, it has been
said : The divine service which a man does in his illness and dangers is the best. This can be guessed
from the following verse : Perchance you hate a thing which is better for you.
Hazrat Sahal Tastari used to say : It is better to be unable to do divine service as a result of giving
up medicine than to take medicine to gain strength for divine service. He had a serious disease for
which he did not take medicine. Whenever he saw a person unable to pray standing and doing good deeds
owing to illness and for which he took medicine to gain strength he expressed wonder and said : It is
better for this man to pray sitting and to remain satisfied in his condition than to gain strength by
taking medicine in order to pray standing. The people of Basara used to make their passions weak by
hunger to curb temptation, as they knew that a little action of mind, such as patience and
God-reliance, is better than a mountain like actions of bodily limbs. Disease does not prevent the
working of mind. Sahal Tastari said : Physical disease is good but mental disease is bad.
(5) Fifth cause. It is to believe that sins are compensated by diseases. Some people commit many sins
and fear much and abstain from taking medicine for diseases for making expiations for their sins. The
Prophet said : Fever and other diseases continue to come to a man owing to his sins till he travels in
the earth like a virtuous man free from sins and faults. There is in the tradition that the fever of
one day expiates the sins of a year. Some people explain its reason by saying that fever destroys the
strength of a year. Some say that a man has got 360 glands. Fever enters into each gland and therefore
one feels pain. So every pain in each gland expiates the sins of one day. When the Prophet mentioned
the expiation of sin by fever, Zaid-bin-Sabet prayed for lasting fever. As a result his fever continued
till he died. Some Ansars prayed similarly. The Prophet said : God is not pleased with anything but
Paradise for one whose two eyes has been robbed by Him. Some Ansars wished therefore to become blind.
The Prophet Jesus Christ said : He who does not remain satisfied with diseases and economic
difficulties with hope of expiation of sins can not become wise. It is reported that the Prophet Moses
prayed to God on seeing a man in a great distress : 0 Lord, show mercy on him. God said: How can I show
mercy on him ? I am
240 TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL Vol-IV
showing mercy on him by giving him this distress. In other words I am expiating his sins and increasing
(6) Sixth cause. It is to believe that health breeds greed. pride and other evils. A man by virtue of
his continued sound health may have in his mind pride ungratefulness and low desires. For this reason a
religious man gives up medicine. So that idleness, pride and other evils may not come to him. Health is
the name of natural strength. Greed arises out of health and when it is high, commission of sin becomes
easy. The lowest danger of health is to lose time uselessly by engaging oneself in happiness. When God
wishes good for a servant. He warns him by diseases, dangers and difficulties. For this reason, a
certain sage said : A believer is not free from diseases, wants and disgrace. The Prophet said God says
: Proverty is my prison and disease is my chain. I inflict a servant whom I love with these. When there
is prevention of sin in disease, what greater good can there be than this ? There is peace of mind in
giving up of sins. A certain religions man asked a man : How are you? He said : I am in peace of mind.
He said : If you have not committed sins, you are then in peace of mind. If you have committed sins,
then what disease is greater than sins ? He who commits sins is deprived of good.
Hazrat Ali saw a tribe of Nabatis in Iraq dressed gorgeously on an I'd day and asked them : Why are
these gorgeous dresses? They said : They day in which we do not commit sins is the day of our festival.
God said : Surely man is inordinate, as he thinks himself free from want. In other words, he does not
care anything as a result of his living in peace.
A certain sage said : Pharaoh lived for 400 years. During this long ,period, he had not even an attack
of headache, nor the change of even a gland. For the reason of this continued happiness, he said : I am
your highest Lord-79: 24. He claimed himself to be God Had he suffered even half headache for a day, he
would have kept himself busy for that and he could not have claimed to be God. The Prophet said :
Remember much what destroys happiness (death). It is said that fever is a messenger of death. It
reminds death and keeps one away from useless things. God says : Don't your see that they are put to
test once or twice a year and yet they are not repentant and do not remember God? This test is meant to
be diseases. It is said what when a man is affected twice a year by diseases and yet does not become
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 241
repentant, the angel of death says to him : 0 careless one, messenger after messenger came to you from
me but you did not respond to them. For this reason, the ancient sages became anxious when any disease
or loss of life or property did not come to them even after expiry of a year. They said: A believer
does not become free from fear or disaster in every 40 days.
It is reported that Hazrat Ammar-b-Yaser married a woman and after this it appeared that the woman
never fell ill. For this reason, he divorced her. The Prophet consented to marry a woman as she had
many qualities. He was also told that she had never any disease. The Prophet said : I have got no
necessity for such a woman. Once there was mention of disease and headache before the Prophet and a man
said : I don't know what headache is. The Prophet then said : Go away from me. Let one who wished to
see an inmate of Hell look at this man. The Prophet said : Fever is a portion of a believer's hell.
Hazrat Anas and Hazrat Ayesha asked the Prophet : 0 Messenger of God, will there be any man with the
martyrs on the Resurrection day ? He said : Yes, a man who remembers death twenty times a day. It is
beyond doubt that a diseases man remembers death much. When the benefits of diseases are numerous a
party of saints gave up efforts to remove diseases.
It is improper to say that to give up medicine is good in all circumstances. It is said that to take
medicine is the condition of those who have got weak faith and to give up medicine is the condition of
those who have got firm faith and God-reliance. They say that God reliant men will give up cupping and
other medicines. If it is true. It is also true that if a serpent enters a wearing apparel, he should
not remove it. It can also be said that he should not take water to remove thirst or food to remove
To go to places of epidemics is improper. Reports about epidemics have come from Hazrat Omar and other
companions. When they reached the outskirts of Syria, news reached them that plague and cholera in
virulent type broke out there. There were two groups among them. One group said : We shall not enter
this city to face destruction. Another group said : We shall enter this city depending upon God, we
shall not flee away from the decree of God and avoid death or else we shall be like those peoples about
whom God said : Have you not seen those people
242 TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL Vol-IV
Vol-IV THE BOOK OF CONSTRUCTIVE VIRTUES 243
who went out of their houses for fear of death in thousands ? They therefore went to Hazrat Omar and
sought his opinion. He said : We shall return and shall not enter this city infected with epidemics.
Those who opposed this idea said to him : Shall we flee away from the decree of God ? Hazrat Omar said
: Yes, we shall flee away from the decree of God and return to the decree of God. He then cited an
illustration for them and said : Don't you consider where one, having sheep and two fields for grazing
them, one full of green grass and another full of sands free from grass and leaves, shall graze them ?
They said : Yes, we have understood it. They then went to Abdur Rahman who was not present there. In
the morning he came and Hazrat Omar asked his opinion about it. He said : 0 Commander of the faithful,
I heard a Hadis about it from the Messenger of God. Hazrat Omar exclaimed : God is greatest Hazrat
Abdur Rahman said :: I heard the Prophet say : When you hear about epidemics anywhere, don't-come to
it. If you are in the place infected with epidemics, don't' go out of it. At this, Hazrat Omar became
pleased and offered thanks to God and said : My opinion is supported by Hadis. Then he returned from
that place with his companions. All the companions agreed on this Hadis and went away. From this it
appears that God-reliance does not go by this act, rather it is a high stage of God-reliance.
Question. Why did the Prophet prohibit to go out of the infected place ? In the medical rules, air is
the cause of epidemics. Why did he not give permission to go out of it?
Answer. Know. 0 dear readers, that there are no two opinions that there is no prohibition to flee away
from injurious things. In this matter, to give up God-reliance is lawful. But it does not show the path
to reach the goal. God knows that the air does not injure the body when it touches it, but foul air
breathed constanly may injure health. In other words, when the air becomes polluted and one inhales and
exhales it for a long time, it enters into a healthy body. It does not not come out till the inner body
is affected by it. In that condition any man living long in a place infected with epidemics, may be
affected by it. If the Prophet would have given permission to the people of the place infected with
epidemics to go -out, there would have been no persons there except the patients, whose condition would
have been miserable for want of nursing and care. The Muslims are
like a building whose one part strengthens the other. The believers are like one body. If one part is
attacked, the other parts also respond. This is one of the reasons of prohibition.
Question. It is seen from above that there is good in giving up medicine. Then why did not the Prophet
give up medicine in order to gain merits?
Answer Togive up medicine is good for the man whose sins are many and which require expiation. This was
contrary to the case of the Prophet who was sinless and pure. He came as a world teacher to teach the
people in all matters. Therefore he taught the people to take medicine in case of illness. It is,
however, more perfect to know that stone and gold are the same than to flee away from them. This was
exactly the case with the Prophet and thereby his God-reliance did not lessen.
The condition of God-reliant man in disclosing or suppressing disease. Know, 0 readers, that to
suppress disease, poverty or other disasters is included with the hidden treasures like good works.
That is the highest stage, as to remain satisfied with the decree of God, to remain patient at the
dangers anddifficulties sent by Him and to keep secret the affairs between him and God can save him
from many dangers. Inspite of this, there is no harm in disclosing them if his intention and goal
remain fixed. In three cases, disease can be expressed. (1) To take medicine. It is necessary to take
medicine from the physician after disclosing the disease to him. This should not be in the way of*
complaint but to state what has been sent by God to him. Hazrat Bashar Hafi used to .tell of his
disease to the physician Abdur Rahman. Imam Ahmad disclosed his disease and said : I am saying of God's
power which appeared in me. (2) To acquire patience and gratefulness. In addition to physician, one may
disclose his diseases to saints and sages with the object of learning from them good patienee and good
gratefulness in diseases Hazrat Hasan Basri said : When a patient praises God and expresses
gratefulness to Him and then remembers his disease his complaint disappears. (3) The third object is to
attribute power to God. Disease can be disclosed with the object of expressing one's inability and
failure on the one hand and appreciating the power of God on the other. I its reported that Hazrat Ali
was asked once about the condition of his disease. He said : I am not well. One of them began to
look-at another. They
244 TAUHID AND TAWAKKAL Vol-IV
did not like the expression and began to think why he complained. Then Hazrat Ali said : Can there be
expression of pride before the Almighty God ? I like more to express my inability and weakness before
Him. Once Hazrat Ali fell ill. The Prophet heard him say : 0 God, give me patience over my danger. The
Prophet said to him: Have you wanted danger from God? Pray for peace from Him. There is permission of
disclosing disease with this object. To complain to God with other objects is unlawful. Patience is
good, It was said in explaining it that there is complain in it. Hazrat Eakub was asked : Who has
robbed you of your eye-sight? He said : Bitterness of time and long sorrows. God then sent revelation
to him : Have you got an opportunity of complaining against Me to My servant? He said : 0 Lord, I am
repenting to Thee. Taus and Muzahed said : The cries of a patient at the time of his disease are
written. The wise men did not like that a patient should raise a cry as it is a form of complaint.
Hazrat Ayub raised cries of agony at the time of his disease. The devil expressed satisfaction at this.
The Prophet said : When a man fall ill, God sends two angels saying: Look to what he says. If he
praises God and glorifies Him, pray from him. If he complains and speaks evil, tell him like that.
END OF PART I
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