Is Man’s Weakness And Impoyance An Appeal For Divine

Is Man\'s Weakness And Impoyance An Appeal For Divine

Man, among the creatures, is much like a tender child. His strength originates in his weakness and his power in his impotence. It is on account of this want of strength and power that the whole of creation has been subjugated to him. If, therefore, man perceives his weakness and becomes a humble servant to God through his prayer, verbal and active, if he recognizes his impotence and seeks God’s help, he will then have fulfilled the obligation of gratitude for the subjugation of nature to him. Besides, God will enable him to reach his goal and achieve his aims in such a way that if it were left to his own powers he could not succeed in one hundredth of it. Sometimes he wrongly attributes to his own power and ability the attainment of a wish that has been obtained for him through the prayer offered by the tongue of his disposition.

Consider how great a source of power is the weakness of a chick, on account of which the mother hen will attack even a lion. Or how the weakness of a lion cub subjugates to itself so great a beast as the lioness which itself suffers hunger to feed its baby. How remarkable is the powerful appeal inherent in weakness, and what a spectacular manifestation of Compassion for importunate beings!

In the same way, a loved child obtains his goal through weeping, or simply wishing, or making a sad face, and can cause mighty persons to serve him. If, otherwise he relies upon his own strength, he could never realize even one-thousandth of this. On account of his weakness and powerlessness, in fact, feelings of affection and protection are so motivated in his favor that a single gesture of his hand may suffice for him to subjugate powerful persons to himself.

If a child like this becomes so arrogant as to deny the care and affection that is being shown to him and says, in accusation of the protection over him, “I do all this with my own power,” he will certainly deserve a slap. Similarly, man will also, deservedly, receive a punishment if he denies the mercy of his Creator towards him and accuses God’s wisdom in ingratitude for what Divine Mercy has bestowed upon him. Man will be punished if he attributes all of his achievements to his own power and knowledge

This shows that man’s observed dominion in nature, his advancement and progress in civilization and technology, have not been realized solely through his own power, effort, and success. He largely owes them to his essential weakness and helplessness which attract divine aid; his poverty is the source of divine provision, his ignorance is made up for by divine inspiration; his need draws divine favors. Also, it is Divine Mercy and Affection, and Divine Wisdom, but not his own power and knowledge, which have empowered him with dominion over the rest of the creation, and have put things at his disposal. It is again the Divine Authority and Compassion which, alone, enable man, so weak as to be defeated by a blind scorpion and a footless snake, to dress in silk through a worm and to eat the honey of a stinging insect.

Since this is the truth, O man, renounce arrogance and do not put your trust in your self! Rather, affirm your impotence and weakness in the high presence of God by asking for His help and by praying and entreating Him. Declare your poverty and insufficiency, and show that you are His true servant. Then say, “God is sufficient for us. Most sublime is He in Whom we trust,”12 and, in saying so, ascend to the higher ranks.

Do not say, “I am nothing; what significance do I have that the All-Wise Creator should intentionally put the whole of the creation at my disposal and demand from me universal gratitude?”

You are indeed almost nothing with respect to your physical being. But concerning your duty or rank, you are an attentive observer of this magnificent universe, an eloquent tongue of beings declaring the Divine Wisdom, a perceptive student of this book of creation, an admiring overseer of the creatures that glorify God’s praise, and a respected master of worshipping beings.

My dear friend, man is indeed an insignificant particle; a poor creature and a weak animal as far as your physical being and incarnate soul are counted, and, therefore, you are being carried away by the huge waves of all creation. But if you are perfected through the light of belief, which comprises the radiance of divine love, you will find kingliness in your being a slave. You will find comprehensiveness in your particularity, a world in your small entity and a very high rank in your insignificance. Also, the realm of your supervision of the rest of the creation will be so broad that you can say, “My Compassionate Lord has made the world a home for me. He has given me the sun and the moon as lamps, spring as a bunch of roses, summer as a banquet of favors, and the animals as obedient servants. He has put the plants and vegetation at my disposal also, as ornaments and provisions to my home.”

Is It Possible For Us Give Enough Thanks To God

Is It Possible For Us Give Enough Thanks To God

If only the picture of a bunch of grapes had been shown to us, could the whole of mankind produce it, even if they worked in close cooperation? Whereas God nourishes us with all those bounties of His for nothing and in return demands from us almost nothing.

How can we pay the thanks for each limb of our body? When we see the ill and crippled in hospitals or when we are ill, we can understand how valuable health is, and how can we pay the thanks due for our health? The worship, which God Almighty orders us to do, is, in fact, for our benefit, for our spiritual refinement and a good personal and collective life. Furthermore, if we believe in and worship God, He will reward us with infinite happiness and bounties in an external world, in Paradise.

In sum, we see that almost everything we have is given to us for nothing our part in the bounties we enjoy in the world is quite negligible. Like this, the will power we have is equally negligible when compared to the consequences, which God Almighty creates as a result of our use of it. However weak it is and however difficult it is to understand its true nature, God creates our actions according to the choices and decisions, which we make through our will power.

Is Every Prayer Answered By God

Is every prayer answered by God? What does answering prayer mean?

If someone objects: “We pray many times, but we are not given what we pray for, although the verse cited says that every prayer will be accepted inclusively,” the answer would be as follows:

The prayer being answered does not necessarily mean its “acceptance” in all circumstances. There is an answer for every prayer; but to accept the prayer, and to give what is prayed for depends upon the Wisdom of the All-Mighty. Suppose that a sick child is asking a doctor to give him a certain kind of medicine. The doctor either will give him that certain kind of medicine or he will give him a better one for the benefit of the child. Or he will give him no medicine at all, if he judges that any kind of medicine may be bad for the health of that child.

Similarly, the All-Mighty, Who is the All-Hearing and All- Seeing, certainly answers the prayer of His servant, and He changes the depression of loneliness into the pleasure of His company. But His answer does not depend on the fancies of man, rather it depends on the Divine Wisdom. According to His Wisdom, He either gives what is requested or what is better or He gives nothing at all.

Moreover, prayer is a form of worship and the reward for worship is principally given in the Hereafter. Prayer, in essence, is not done for worldly purposes; worldly purposes are rather causes for saying the prayer. For example, prayer for rain is a kind of worship and the lack of rain is its occasion not its purpose. If rain is to be held as the only aim of prayer, then this prayer will not be acceptable since it will not be sincere, not intended to obtain the pleasure of God.

Sunset likewise determines the time for evening prayer, and the solar and lunar eclipses are two special occasions for two particular kinds of worship. Since the eclipses of those luminous signs, the sun and the moon, are two means of the manifestation of Divine Majesty, the All-Mighty calls His servants to a sort of worship peculiar to those occasions. But such prayer is not done to cause an eclipse to pass away-the duration and the end of such events are already known through astronomical calculations. The same argument applies to drought and also to other calamities or perils. They are all occasions for certain kinds of prayer. Man, at such times, best realizes his impotence and, accordingly, feels the need to take refuge in the high Presence of the Absolutely Powerful One through prayer and supplication. If, therefore, a calamity is not lifted despite many prayers, one should not say, “My prayer has not been accepted” but should say, “The time for prayer is not yet over.” If, on the other hand, God removes the calamity, then this is because of His endless Grace and Munificence, and that moment marks the disappearance of that special occasion for prayer.

Man must pursue God’s pleasure through his worship. He must affirm his own poverty and weakness in his prayer, and seek refuge with Him through prayer; he must not interfere in His Lordship. He should leave the taking of measures to Him and rely on His Wisdom. He should not accuse His Mercy.

How Can We Respond To Universal Infinite Favors Through Restricted Thankfulness

How Can We Respond To Universal Infinite Favors Through Restricted Thankfulness

Through a universal intention and infinitely profound belief and devotion. Suppose a poor man enters the presence of the king with a present of a few dollars and sees that gifts worthy of millions each have come from the king’s favorite men and been arranged there. He thinks: “My present means nothing, but this is what I can afford.” Then he says to the king: “O lord! I offer you all those precious gifts in my own name, for you deserve them. If I were able to, I would give you the double as my gift!” The king, who though in need of nothing accepts the gifts of his subjects as a token of the degree of their respect and loyalty, accepts the universal intention and desire of that poor man and his deep feelings of devotion as though it were the greatest gift. In exactly the same way, a poor servant says in his daily prescribed prayers: “All veneration and reverence is for God,” by which he means: “I offer You in my name all the gifts of worship which all beings present to you through their lives. You deserve all of it, rather, much more than it.” This belief and intention is most comprehensive and universal thankfulness.

The seeds and stones of plants are their intentions to grow and become each an elaborate plant. For example, with its hundreds of seeds, a melon intends: “O my Creator! I want to exhibit the inscriptions of Your Beautiful Names in many places of the earth.” Having full knowledge of the future of things, Almighty God accepts their intentions as worship in deeds. The prophetic saying, “The intention of the believer is better than his action,” is to express this reality. That is also why we glorify and praise Him with phrases expressing infinitude, like the following:

Glory be to You and praise be to You to the number of Your creatures and the things pleasing to You and the decorations of Your Supreme Throne and to the amount of the ink of Your words. We glorify You with the sum of all the glorification of Your prophets and Your saints and Your angels.

A commander offers the king in his name all the services rendered by his soldiers. Similarly man, being the commander of all the earthly creatures including plants and animals, and acting in his own private world in the name of everyone, says, “You alone do we worship and from You alone do we seek help.” He offers the Worshipped One of Majesty in his name all the worship of all human beings and their entreaties for help.

Also, by saying, “Glory be to You with the sum of all the glorification of all of Your creatures and with the tongues of all of the things You have made,” he makes all of the creatures speak in his own name.

A Supplication Or Praise Master Of Universe

A Supplication Or Praise Master Of Universe

[This treatise proves with extraordinary decisiveness, authenticity, and certainty together with a wondrous conciseness, the most important of the fundamentals of belief such as the necessary existence, unity, and oneness of God, the splendor of His dominicality, the immensity of His power, the breadth of His mercy, the universality of His sovereignty, the comprehensiveness of His knowledge, and the all-inclusiveness of His wisdom. The indications of the resurrection of the dead, and especially those emphasized at the end, are extremely powerful.]

Introduction

This Eighth Proof of the Fundamentals of Belief offers evidence for the necessary existence and unity of God, and certain proofs of the comprehensiveness of dominicality and the immensity of Divine power. It proves too both the comprehensiveness of Divine sovereignty, and the extensiveness of Divine mercy, and the encompassment of Divine knowledge, and the fact that Divine wisdom embraces all the beings of the universe.In Short: In each of the introductory passages of this Eighth Proof are eight conclusions. Proving these eight conclusions through their evidences, this Eighth Proof has high value.In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate.

“Behold! In the creation of the heavens and the earth; in the alternation of night and the day; in the sailing of the ships through the oceans for the profit of mankind; in the rain which God sends down from the skies, and the life He gives therewith to an earth that is dead; in the beasts of all kinds that He scatters through the earth; in the disposal of the winds and the clouds subjugated between the sky and the earth, indeed are signs for people who think (2:164).”

God’s Most Noble Messenger, the supreme Holy Book’s commentator and interpreter, expounded one level —about Divine unity— of the numerous luminous levels of this sublime verse in one of the ninety-nine sections of his peerless supplication, The Big Shield. Alluding in the supplication through a thousand and one Divine Names to a thousand and one proofs of Divine unity, he described his Sustainer. One of those sections is this: O You Who is the First of all things, and the Last;

O God of all things, and their Maker;

O Provider of all things, and their Creator;

O Maker of all things, and their Owner;

O Giver of want to all things, and Giver of plenty;

O Originator of all things, and their Renewer;

O Causer of all things, Who determines them with due measure;

O Nurturer of all things, and their Administrator;

O You Who ‘rolls up’ all things, and causes their constant change;

O Giver of life to all things, and Dealer of death.

Glory be unto You! There is no god but You! Mercy! Mercy! Deliver us from Hell-fire!This sample shows that the Noble Messenger’s knowledge of God, and his proofs of Divine unity were at such a level that no one is equal to him, and that in this field he is the supreme leader. By following him, everyone may enter that treasury. It is clear that knowledge, sciences, and arts are perfected through the conjunction of ideas and blending of minds; through ideas being combined and different works complementing each other, the works are perfected. This is why the craftsman who invented the shishhane rifle was more skillful than the one who invented the machine gun now. Whereas one who listens attentively with the ear of the heart to the supplication of The Big Shield , imagining himself to be in the presence of the Unlettered Prophet and hearing it from him, will understand and see that those thousand and one sacred truths, which comprise a thousand and one proofs and descriptions, and each of which is the conclusion of a chain of thought and a window opening onto Divine unity, were composed by one unlettered among an illiterate people in an illiterate environment, and a nation lacking a holy scripture in totally original, inventive fashion imitating no one, solving on his own through illumination the riddle of creation and talisman of the universe. This was not in imitative fashion like today with the help and supplications of thousands of other luminaries, but out of his boundless compassion and infinite clemency —due to which he invites to listen both the inhabitants of the heavens under the celestial dome and the vast congregation in the huge mosque of the universe— he seeks help, succor, mercy, and salvation for men, and he says:O You Who in the heavens is His grandeur;

O You Who in the earth are His signs;

O You Who in all things are His evidences;

O You Who in the ocean are His strange wonders;

O You Who originates creation then renews it;

O You Who in the mountains are His treasures;

O You Who creates everything in the best way;

O You to Whom return all matters;

O You Whose grace is apparent in all things;

O You Who displays His power through all creatures.

Glory be unto You! There is no god but You! Mercy! Mercy! Deliver us from Hell-fire!Here, the Supreme Holy Book’s Commentator is expounding one aspect of the above verse. A short translation and meaning of it is this. He says:

“O One of Glory Whose magnificence is to be seen in the skies and heavenly bodies! O One of Perfection, the signs and evidences of Whose unity are to be observed in the earth and in all its beings! O Necessary Existent, proofs to Whose necessary existence are present in all things and all creatures! O All-Glorious One of Perfection, Who creates all the strange beings in the vast oceans! O Munificent Creator, Who creates the treasures stored up in the mountains to meet the needs of living beings! O Beauteous Bestower of Bounties, Who creates everything in the best way, administers them in the best way, and provides all the necessaries for each in the best way! O Omnipotent One, Sustainer of All Things, to Whom all things have recourse in all matters, for all needs, and on Whom all beings rely in all circumstances, and to Whom pertain all rights and dues, judge judgments rule! O Gracious and Knowing One, the clear traces of Whose favors, and the manifestations of Whose grace, and the subtle inscriptions of Whose arts, and the fine gifts of Whose mercy, are observed in all things! O All-Powerful and Wise One, Who made the universe an exhibition of marvels in order to display His power to his conscious creatures, and made all His artifacts heralds and proclamations announcing His perfections, such as His power, wisdom, and mercy! You are free of all impotence and fault; Other than You there is no god who might succor our plight! Mercy! Mercy! Save us from Hell-fire!”

God’s Most Noble Messenger, the Supreme Holy Book’s commentator, expounded the verse with this supplication. Then the Messenger’s important, precise, intelligent, and exacting student, Imam Ali, composed a supplication-like commentary on his Master’s supplicatory commentary, and discovering another aspect of the supplication, uncovered a further face of the verse. Keeping in mind his Noble Master’s supplication, he described that aspect of the verse as follows. As we gave a short meaning and translation of the supplication above, so do we for this one:

“O God! In the heavens are no rotations or motions but through their order and wisdom they testify to your existence, making You known. On the earth are no changes and transformations, and no states or circumstances, but through their order and regularity they make You known together with Your unity and dominicality. In the seas is no creature, nor even a drop of water, but through its wisdom it points to Your existence and testifies to Your dominicality. In the mountains are no minerals, chemicals, or rocks, stored up for living beings, but through their uses and benefits they testify to Your dominicality and existence. In the heart is no thought inspired from the Unseen but it points to Your existence and testifies to Your unity. On the trees are no leaves but through their order and wisdom they recognize You, that is, they proclaim that they are the works of Your art. In bodies there are no movements but they testify to Your dominicality. O my Creator! For the sake of Your power, which subjugates the heavens and the earth, subjugate to me those things that I wish!”

Now, an impotent student of Imam Ali and wretched servant of the Holy Book, expounding this supplication of his also with a supplication, wanted to disclose in the light of the Greatest Name one aspect of the sublime verse by expounding that aspect of the above supplication, which is only one of the hundred sections of the supplication of the Supreme Interpreter, that is, The Big Shield. The student of Imam Ali says:

O My God and Sustainer!

I see through the eyes of belief, the instruction and light of the Holy Book, the teachings of God’s Noble Messenger, and the indications of the Name of All-Wise, that in the heavens there are no rotations and motions but through their order and regularity they point to Your existence. There is no heavenly body but through its silently performing its duty and remaining in place without prop it testifies to Your dominicality and unity. There is no star but through its balanced creation, regular position, luminous smile, and the stamp of its similarity to the other stars, it indicates the majesty of Your Godhead and Your unity. There is not one of the twelve planets but through its wise motion, docile subjection, orderly duties, and significant satellites, it testifies to Your necessary existence and indicates the sovereignty of Your Godhead.

Yes, —O Creator of the Heavens and Earth, who directs and administers all particles together with all the orderly components they make up, and spins the planets and their regular satellites, subjugating them to His command!— just as each of the inhabitants of the heavens testifies on its own, so in their totality they testify to Your necessary existence and unity in a way so clear and powerful that shining proofs to the number of stars in the heavens affirm that testimony.

Also, appearing as a regular army or imperial fleet decked out with electric lights, the limpid, beautiful, spotless heavens with their extraordinarily huge and speedy bodies, point clearly to the splendor of your dominicality and tremendousness of Your power, which creates all things; and to the boundless extent of Your sovereignty, which overspreads the heavens, and to Your mercy, which embraces all living things; and testifies indubitably to the comprehensiveness of Your knowledge, which is concerned with all the states and circumstances of all the creatures of the heavens, and embraces them and orders them, and to Your wisdom, which encompasses all things. This testimony is so evident it is as though the stars are the words and luminous embodiments of the skies’ testimony.

Also, like disciplined soldiers, orderly ships, wondrous airplanes, or marvelous lamps, the stars in the arena of the heavens, and in their seas and vast spaces, show the glittering splendor of the sovereignty of Your Godhead. As is suggested by the duties of the sun —one star among the members of that army— which are related to its planets and our earth, some of its companions, the other stars, look to the worlds of the hereafter and are not without duties; they are the suns of eternal worlds.

O Necessarily Existent! O Single One of Unity!

These wondrous stars, these strange suns and moons, are subjugated, set in order, and employed in Your dominions, in Your heavens, through Your command, power, and strength, and Your administration and direction. All those heavenly bodies glorify and exalt their single Creator, Who creates, spins, and administers them; through the tongue of disposition, they declare: “Glory be to God! God is Most Great!” Through all their glorifications, I too declare You holy.

O Omnipotent One of Glory, hidden in the intensity of His manifestation and concealed in the magnificence of His grandeur! O One of Absolute Power!

I have understood through the teaching of the All-Wise Holy Book and instruction of Your Most Noble Messenger that just as the heavens and stars testify to your existence and unity, so with its clouds, lightning, thunder, winds, and rain, does the atmosphere testify to Your necessary existence and unity.

Yes, the lifeless, unconscious clouds sending the water of life, rain, to the assistance of needy living beings is only through Your mercy and wisdom; confused chance could in no way interfere. The most powerful of electricity, lightning, which alluding to its potentiality for lighting, encourages man to benefit from it and spectacularly lights up Your power in space. The thunder announces the coming of rain, causing boundless space to speak, and makes the heavens ring out with the reverberations of its glorifying; it hallows You verbally, testifying to Your dominicality. The winds, which are charged with numerous duties like providing the sustenance most vital for animate creatures, and the easiest to benefit from, and ensuring and facilitating respiration, for some purpose turn the atmosphere into a ‘tablet for writing and erasing,’ thus pointing to the activity of Your power and testifying to Your existence. Similarly, the mercy milked through Your compassion from the clouds and sent to living beings, testifies through the words of its balanced, orderly droplets, to the breadth of Your mercy and compassion.

O Potent and Active Disposer! O Sublime and Bountiful Bestower!

The clouds, lightning, thunder, wind, and rain each testify on their own to Your necessary existence, so too as a whole, being one within the other and assisting each other in their duties, although they are by nature dissimilar and opposed to each other, they indicate most powerfully Your unity. They point too to the magnificence of Your dominicality, which makes the vast atmosphere into an exhibition of wonders, on some days filling and emptying it several times; and to the immensity and all-pervasiveness of Your power, which makes it resemble a slate which is written on then rubbed clean, and wrings it out like a sponge and waters the garden of the earth; and to your unbounded mercy and limitless rule, which under the veil of the atmosphere administer all the earth and all creatures. Moreover, the air is employed in duties so wise and the clouds and rain utilized in benefits so percipient that if it was not for a knowledge and wisdom that encompass all things, they could not be thus employed.

O You Who acts as He wishes!

Through Your activity in the atmosphere, Your power, which continuously displays examples of the resurrection of the dead and Great Gathering and transforms the summer into winter and winter into summer and similar acts, gives the sign that it will transform this world into the hereafter and there display its everlasting acts.

O All-Powerful One of Glory!

The air, clouds, rain, and thunder and lightning in the atmosphere are subjugated and employed in Your dominions, through Your command and power and strength. These creatures, which by nature are so different to each other, sanctify their ruler and commander, who makes them submit instantaneously to his swift commands; they praise and extol His mercy.

O Glorious Creator of the Heavens and Earth!

Through the instruction of the All-Wise Holy Book and teaching of God’s Noble Messenger, I believe and know that just as the heavens testify to Your necessary existence and unity through its stars and the atmosphere testifies through all it contains, so the earth testifies to Your existence and unity through all its creatures and states.

Indeed, there is no change on the earth, such as that of the trees and animals changing their garb every year, but through its orderliness it indicates Your existence and unity. There is no animal but through its sustenance being compassionately provided in relation to its need and weakness, and its being given all the members and faculties necessary to pursue its life, it testifies to Your existence and unity. There is not a plant or animal created before our eyes in the spring that through its wondrous art, its subtle adornment, its being distinguished from all other creatures, and through its order and balance, it makes you known. The marvels of Your power which fill the earth and are known as plants and animals, and their creation from seeds and grains and droplets of fluid, perfectly, without error, in adorned fashion, each with its distinguishing features, form a testimony more brilliant and powerful than the sun to the existence, unity, wisdom, and endless power of their All-Wise Maker.

Also, there is no element, such as air, water, light, fire, and earth, but through its performing functions consciously and perfectly despite its lack of consciousness, and being the means for the arrival of various well-ordered fruits from the treasury of the Unseen despite being simple, without order, and overrunning and spreading everywhere, it testifies to Your existence and unity.

O Omnipotent Creator! O Omniscient Opener Up Of Forms! O Active Creator!

Just as together with all its inhabitants the earth testifies to the necessary existence of its Creator, so too, O Single One of Unity! O Clement and Kind One! O Most Bounteous Provider!, through the stamp on its face and the stamps on the faces of all its inhabitants and their unity and being one within the other and assisting each other, and through all the Names and acts of dominicality that look to them being the same, it testifies with the utmost clarity to Your unity and oneness; indeed it offers testimony to the number of its creatures.

Similarly, through its being an army encampment, an exhibition, a place of instruction, and through all the four hundred thousand different nations present in the divisions of its plants and animals regularly being given all their necessary equipment, the earth points to the magnificence of Your dominicality and to the fact that Your power penetrates all things.

Also, all the different sustenance of innumerable living beings, and its being given to them compassionately, generously, at exactly the right time from simple, dry earth, and the complete subjugation and obedience to the dominical commands of those innumerable individuals, demonstrates that Your mercy embraces all things and that your sovereignty encompasses them.

Also, the despatch of the caravans of creatures, which are in a state of constant change on the earth, and the alternations of life and death, and the administration and management of the plants and animals, and this being possible only through a knowledge that is concerned with all things and an infinite wisdom governing in all things, points to Your comprehensive knowledge and wisdom.

Also, the supreme importance given to man, who in a brief span performs infinite duties, has been equipped with abilities and faculties which suggest he is to live for all eternity, and has disposal over all the beings of the earth; and the infinite outlay made for him in this training-ground of the world, this temporary military encampment of the earth, this transient exhibition; and the boundless manifestations of dominicality, innumerable Divine addresses, and incalculable Divine gifts, which look to him, surely cannot be contained in this fleeting, sorry, confused life, this transitory world so full of tribulation. Since they could be only for another, eternal, life and an everlasting abode of bliss, they point to, even testify to, the bestowals of the hereafter in the everlasting realm.

O Creator of All Things!

All the creatures of the earth are administered and subjugated in Your dominions, in Your earth, through Your strength and power and will, and Your knowledge and wisdom. The dominicality whose activity is observed on the face of the earth is so comprehensive and all-embracing, and its administration and management are so perfect and precise, and it is carried out with such sameness that it shows it is a dominicality, a disposal, which is a whole that cannot be broken into parts and a universal that cannot be divided up. Together with all its inhabitants, the earth sanctifies and glorifies its Maker with innumerable tongues far clearer than the spoken word; they praise and extol their Glorious Provider for His infinite bounties with the tongues of their beings.

O Most Pure and Holy One, hidden in the intensity of His manifestation and concealed in the magnificence of His grandeur!

Through all the sanctifications and glorifications of the earth I sanctify you and declare You to be free of all fault, impotence, and partners; and through all its praise and extolling, I offer You praise and thanks.

O Sustainer of the Land and the Seas!

I have understood from the teaching of the Holy Book and instruction of Your Most Noble Messenger that just as the skies, the atmosphere and the earth testify to Your unity and necessary existence, so do the seas, rivers, streams, and springs testify to them most clearly. Yes, there is no being in the seas, which are like the strange boilers of our world producing steam —there is not a drop of them even— but through its well-ordered being, its benefits and state, it makes known its Creator. And of the strange creatures whose splendid sustenance is given them out of simple sand and water, and the living creatures of the seas with their well-ordered beings, especially of the fishes who populate the seas with one fish producing a million eggs, there is not one but through its creation and its duties, its being sustained and administered, nurtured and superintended, it indicates its Creator and testifies to its Provider.

Also, of the precious, decorated jewels in the seas, there is not one but through its attractive creation and beneficial qualities it recognizes You and makes You known. Yes, just as they testify to You singly, so too in so far as they are all mixed up together, bear the same stamp in their natures, are created with great ease, and are found in great numbers, they altogether testify to Your unity.

Also, through the seas, which surround the globe with its land masses, being held suspended without spilling over or dispersing or overrunning the land as the earth voyages around the sun; and creating the multifarious ornamented living creatures and jewels out of simple sand and water, and all their sustenance and other needs being supplied in general and complete fashion; and through their administration, and through none of the inevitable innumerable corpses of their dead fellows being found on the surface of the seas; they testify indirectly to their number to Your existence and its necessity.

Also, just as they point clearly to the splendid sovereignty of Your dominicality and to the magnificence of Your power, which encompasses all things; so do they indicate the limitless breadth of Your mercy and rule, which govern all things from the huge yet orderly stars beyond the skies to the tiny fishes at the bottom of the sea, which are nurtured in regular fashion. They point too to Your knowledge and wisdom, which as demonstrated by the order, benefits, instances of wisdom, and the balance and equilibrium of all things, encompass and comprehend them. There being such reservoirs of mercy for the travelers in this guest-house of the world and their being utilized for man’s journeying, and for his ship, and his benefit shows that the One Who bestows such a profusion of gifts out of the seas on his guests of one night in a wayside inn, must surely have eternal seas of mercy at the seat of His everlasting rule, and those here are merely their small and transitory samples.

Thus, the truly wondrous situation of the seas around the earth and the exceedingly orderly administration and nurturing of their creatures demonstrate self-evidently that it is only through Your power, will, and administration that they are subjugated to Your command in Your dominions; and through the tongues of their beings they sanctify their Creator, declaring: “God is Most Great!”

O All-Powerful One of Glory, Who makes the mountains masts and holds of treasure for the ship of the earth!

Through the instruction of Your Noble Messenger and the teaching of the Wise Holy Book, I have understood that just as the seas with their strange creatures recognize You and make You known, so do the mountains through the wise services they perform. For they ensure that the earth is released from the effects of earthquakes and internal upheavals; save it from being overrun by the seas; purify the air of poisonous gases; are tanks for the saving and storage of water; and treasuries for the minerals and metals necessary for living beings.

Yes, there is not one of the stones to be found in mountains, or the various substances used as remedies for illness, or the varieties of metals and minerals, which are essential for living beings and especially man, or the species of plants that adorn the mountains and plains with their flowers and fruits, but through the wisdom, order, and fine creation it displays, which is impossible to ascribe to chance, it testifies to the necessary existence of an infinitely Powerful, Wise, Compassionate, and Munificent Maker. This is especially true of substances found in the mountains like salt, potassium oxalate, quinine sulphate, and alum, which superficially resemble each other, but whose tastes are totally dissimilar; and particularly of all the varieties of plants, and the great diversity of their flowers and fruits. Moreover, through their being administered and managed as a totality, and their origins, situations, creation, and art all being similar, and the ease, speed, and cheapness in their making, they testify to the unity and oneness of their Maker.

Also, the creatures on the surface of the mountains and inside them being made everywhere on the earth at the same time in the same fashion, perfectly and without error, with none impeding others, and their being created without confusion despite being intermingled with all the other sorts of other creatures, all point to the splendor of Your dominicality and the immensity of Your power, for which nothing is difficult.

Also, the mountains —both their surfaces and their interiors— being filled in orderly fashion with trees, plants, and minerals to meet the innumerable needs of all the living creatures on the earth, and even to supply the remedies for their many different illnesses, and gratify their various appetites and tastes, and these being displayed for those who need them, indicates the infinite breadth of Your mercy and infinite extent of Your sovereignty. While their being prepared percipiently, knowingly, without confusion, in orderly fashion according to need, despite being all mixed up and concealed in the darkness of the soil layer, indicates Your all-embracing knowledge, which encompasses all things, and the comprehensiveness of Your wisdom, which sets all things in order. Then the storing up of medicinal substances, minerals, and metals points clearly to the compassionate, generous, planned processes of Your dominicality and the subtle precautions of Your grace.

Also, the lofty mountains holding stored up in orderly fashion the reserves to meet the future needs of the travelers in the guest-house of this world, and their being stores stocked up with all the treasures necessary for life, indicates, indeed, testifies, that the Maker Who is thus Munificent and hospitable, All-Wise and Compassionate, Powerful and nurturing, surely possesses eternal treasuries for His never-ending bestowal in an everlasting realm, for His guests Whom He clearly loves. There the stars will perform the function the mountains perform here.

O One Powerful Over All Things!

The mountains and the creatures within them are subjugated and stored up in Your dominions through Your power and strength, Your knowledge and wisdom! They sanctify and glorify their Creator, Who subjugates and employs them in this way.

O Merciful Creator, Compassionate Sustainer!

Through the instruction of Your Noble Messenger and the teaching of the Wise Holy Book I have understood that just as the heavens, atmosphere, earth, seas, and mountains, together with their creatures and all they contain, recognize You and make You known; so too do all the trees and plants, together with all their leaves and flowers and fruits. All their leaves, with their ecstatic movements and recitations; all their flowers, which describe through their decoration the Names of their Maker; and all their fruits, which smile with their agreeableness and the manifestation of Your compassion, testify —through the order within their wondrous art, which is utterly impossible to ascribe to chance, and the balance within the order, and the adornment within the balance, and the embroideries within the adornment, and the fine and various scents within the embroideries, and the varying tastes of the fruits within the scents— so clearly as to be self-evident to the necessary existence of an infinitely Compassionate and Munificent Maker. At the same time, their similarity and mutual resemblance throughout the earth, and their bearing the same stamps on their creation, and their being related in their administration and organization, and the coincidence of the creative acts and dominical Names connected with them, and the innumerable members of their one hundred thousand species being raised one within the other without confusion, forms a testimony through them as a whole to the unity and oneness of their Necessarily Existent Maker.

Also, just as they testify to Your necessary existence and unity, so too the nurturing and administration in hundreds of ways of the innumerable members of the army of living creatures on the face of the earth, which is formed of four hundred thousand different nations, perfectly, with no confusion or difficulty, point to the majesty of Your dominicality within Your unity and to the immensity of Your power, which creates a flower as easily as the spring, and its comprehending all things. They point also to the unlimited breadth of Your mercy, which prepares innumerable varieties of foods for animals and men all over the earth; and through all those works and bestowals, administering and nurturing, being carried out with perfect regularity, and everything, even minute particles, being obedient and subjugated to those commands, they indicate certainly the infinite extent of Your rule; and through every part of those trees and plants, like their leaves, blossoms, fruits, roots, branches, and twigs, being made with every aspect of them being known and seen, in accordance with useful purposes, instances of wisdom, and benefits, they point clearly with innumerable fingers to Your knowledge, which embraces all things, and to the comprehensiveness of Your wisdom. With innumerable tongues, they praise and extol the utterly perfect beauty of Your art and the sheer beauty of Your perfect bestowal.

Also, these precious gifts and bounties and this extraordinary outlay and bestowal, in this temporary hostel and transitory guest-house, for this brief time and fleeting life, indicate through the hands of the trees and plants, indeed, testify, that in order not to make all creatures say, contrary to the necessary result of all His expense and bestowal which is to make Himself loved and known: “You gave us a taste, but then executed us without permitting us to eat;” and not to nullify the sovereignty of His Godhead, and not deny His infinite mercy and make it denied, and in order not to turn all his yearning friends into enemies through depriving them thus, the munificent All-Compassionate One has of a certainty prepared for His servants whom He will send to an everlasting realm, an eternal world, fruit-bearing trees, and flowering plants appropriate to Paradise out of the treasuries of His mercy, in His eternal Paradises. Those here are merely samples to show the customers.

Also, just as through the words of their leaves, flowers and fruits, the trees and plants praise, sanctify, and glorify You, so each one of those words singly declare You to be holy. The glorifications of fruits in particular through the tongue of disposition —with the great variety of their original flesh, their wondrous art, and extraordinary seeds, and those trays of food being given to hands of the trees and placed on them, and sent to Your living guests— their glorifications are so evident they are almost verbal. All these are subjugated and submissive to Your command in Your dominions through Your power and strength, and Your wisdom and bestowal!

O Wise Maker and Compassionate Creator, hidden in the intensity of His manifestation and concealed within the magnificence of His grandeur!

Through the tongues of all trees and plants, and their leaves, flowers, and fruits, and to their number, I praise and extol You and declare You free of all defect, impotence, and partners!

O All-Powerful Creator! All-Wise Planner! Compassionate Nurturer!

Through the instruction of Your Most Noble Messenger and the teaching of the Wise Holy Book, I have understood and believed that just as plants and trees recognize You and make known Your sacred attributes and Beautiful Names; so too among men and the animals, which are those living creatures which have spirits, there is not one that through its internal and external members, which work as regularly as clockwork, and the extremely fine order and balance of their bodies, and the significant benefits and purposes of their senses and faculties, and the great art in their making, and their being decked out with much wisdom, and the precise equilibrium of their physical systems, but it testifies to Your necessary existence and the reality of Your attributes. For blind force, unconscious nature, and aimless chance could in no way interfere in such percipient, delicate art, and conscious subtle wisdom, and perfect providential balance; they could not be their work; it is impossible. It is also utterly impossible that living creatures made themselves, for then each of their particles would have to possess comprehensive knowledge and wisdom like a god, to be able to know, see, and make all the parts of their bodies and form it, indeed, it would have to be able to know, see, and make everything in the world connected with it, then the body’s formation could be referred to it, and it could be said that “it makes itself.”

Also, their being subject to the same administration, and the same planning, and their all being the same kind, and their bearing the same stamp, such as the resemblance in features like the eye, ear, and mouth, and the unity in the stamp of wisdom observed on the faces of members of the same species, and the resemblance in livelihood and creation, and their all being one within the other; there is not one of these circumstances but it testifies categorically to Your unity, and, by the manifestations of all Your Names which look to the universe being on each individual, to Your oneness within unity.

Also, through being equipped, trained, and subservient like a regular army and from the smallest to the largest, their conforming in orderly fashion to the commands of dominicality, man and the hundred thousand animal species on the face of the earth point to the degree of splendor of that dominicality; and through their great value despite their great multitude, and their perfection despite the speed of their making, and their great art despite the ease of their making, to the degree of grandeur of Your power. Also, they point decisively to the boundless expanse of Your mercy, which sends their sustenance to all of them, from the microbe to the rhinoceros, and the tiniest fly to the largest bird, dispersed from east to west and north to south; and through all of them performing their natural functions like soldiers under command, and every spring the face of the earth being the encampment of an army newly taken under arms in place of those discharged the previous autumn, to the infinite extent of Your sovereignty.

Also, through a profound knowledge and precise wisdom all living creatures being miniature copies of the universe, and their being made faultlessly, with none of their parts being confused or any of their different forms mixed up, they point to their number to Your knowledge, which embraces all things, and Your wisdom, which comprehends all things; while by their all being made so beautiful and fine as to be miracles of art and wonders of wisdom, they indicate in innumerable ways the utterly perfect beauty of Your dominical art, which You greatly love and want to exhibit; and through all of them, and particularly their young, being nourished in the finest way, with their wishes and desires being satisfied, to the sweet beauty of Your grace.O Most Merciful and Compassionate! O One Most True to His Promise! Owner of the Day of Judgment!

Through the instruction of Your Noble Messenger and the guidance of the All-Wise Holy Book I have understood that since the choicest result of the universe is life, and the choicest essence of life is spirit, and the choicest of beings with spirits are intelligent beings, and of intelligent beings the one with the most comprehensive nature is man; and since all the universe is subjugated to life and works for life, and living beings are subjugated to beings with spirits and they are sent to this world for them, and beings with spirits are subjugated to man and they assist him; and since by nature men earnestly love their Creator and their Creator both loves them, and by every means makes them love Him; and since man’s innate capacity and spiritual faculties look to another, permanent world and everlasting life, and his heart and intelligence desire eternity with all their strength, and his tongue beseeches his Creator for eternity with endless prayers; He surely would not offend men, who love Him greatly and are loved, by causing them to die then not raising them again to life, and while He created them for an eternal love, to make them feel eternal hostility; to do that would not be possible. Men were sent to work in this world in order to live happily in another, eternal world, and to win that life. The Names manifested on man in this brief and fleeting life indicate that men, who will be their mirrors in the eternal realm, will receive their eternal manifestations.

Yes, the true friend of the Eternal One should be eternal, and the conscious mirror of the Enduring One should be enduring.

It is understood from sound narrations that the spirits of animals will live eternally, and that certain individual animals, like the Hudhud of Solomon and his ants, Salih’s she-camel, and the dog of the Companions of the Cave, will go to the eternal realm with both their spirits and their bodies, and that each species will have a single body that may be utilized from time to time. This is also demanded by wisdom and reality, and mercy and dominicality.O All-Powerful Self-Subsistent One!

All living creatures, beings with spirits, and conscious beings are subjugated to the commands of Your dominicality and employed in their innate duties only through Your power and strength, Your will and planning, and Your mercy and wisdom. Some have been subjugated to man, not because of man’s power and dominance, but by Divine mercy because of his innate weakness and impotence. Through the tongues of both disposition and speech they absolve their Maker and True Object of Worship of all defect and partner, and offering thanks and praise for His bounties, perform the worship particular to them.O Most Pure and Holy One, hidden in the intensity of His manifestation and concealed within the magnificence of His grandeur!

Forming the intention, I sanctify You with the glorifications of all beings with spirits, and declare: Glory be to You Who has made from water all living things!

O Sustainer of All the Worlds! O God of the First-comers and the Last-comers! O Sustainer of the Heavens and the Earth! Through the instruction of Your Noble Messenger and the teaching of the All-Wise Holy Book I have understood and believe that just as the heavens, atmosphere, earth, land and sea, trees, plants, and animals, together with all their members, parts, and particles, know and recognize You and point to and testify to Your existence and unity; so too living beings, the essence of the universe, and man, the essence of living creatures, and the prophets, saints, and purified scholars, the essence of men, and, through their visions, unfoldings, inspirations, and the discoveries of their hearts and intellects, which form the essence of the prophets, saints, and purified scholars, testify with the certainty of a hundredfold consensus to Your necessary existence, unity and oneness, and give news of them; and through their miracles, wonder-working, and certain proofs, prove what they tell of.

Yes, there is nothing that occurs to the heart, which looks to one who inspires it from behind the veil of the Unseen; and there is no inspiration, which makes one look to the giver of inspiration; and there is no certain belief, which discloses in the form of ‘absolute certainty’ Your sacred attributes and Most Beautiful Names; and there is no luminous heart of the prophets and saints, which observes with ‘the vision of certainty’ the lights of the Necessary Existent; and there is no enlightened intellect of the purified scholars and veracious ones, which confirms and proves with ‘the knowledge of certainty’ the signs of the existence of the Creator of All Things and the proofs of His unity; —there is not one of these that does not testify to Your necessary existence, and sacred attributes, and Your unity, oneness, and Most Beautiful Names, and point to them and indicate them.

Also, just as relying on their miracles, wonder-working and proofs, all those hundreds of thousands of truthful bringers of good news testify to Your existence and unity; so they unanimously give news of, proclaim, and prove the degree of majesty of Your dominicality, which governs from the administration of the totality of matters of the Sublime Throne, which encompasses all things, to knowing and hearing and administering the secret, private thoughts of the heart, and its desires and supplications. They tell of and prove too the immensity of Your power, which creates innumerable different things at once, and makes the greatest thing as easily as the smallest with no act impeding another and no matter obstructing another.

Also, they give news of and prove through their miracles and proofs the immense breadth of Your mercy, which makes the universe a magnificent palace for beings with spirits, and especially man; has prepared Paradise and everlasting happiness for jinn and man; does not forget even the tiniest living being; and tries to satisfy and please the most impotent heart.

They give news too of the infinite extent of Your sovereignty, which makes comply with Your commands all the realms of creatures from particles to the planets, and subjugates and employs them.

So also they unanimously testify to Your comprehensive knowledge, which makes the universe into a vast book containing treatises to the numbers of its parts, and records the life-stories of all beings in the Clear Record and Clear Book, which are the notebooks of the Preserved Tablet, and inscribes completely and without error in their seeds the indexes and programs of all trees and the biographies of conscious beings in the memories in their heads.

They testify too to the comprehensiveness of Your sacred wisdom, which attaches numerous purposes to all beings, causing even trees to produce results to the number of their fruits, and follows benefits in all living beings to the number of their members, and even their parts and cells, and employing man’s tongue in numerous duties, equips it with the ability to weigh up tastes to the number of foods.

They also unanimously testify that the manifestations of the Names related to Your Beauty and Glory, samples of which are to be seen in this world, will continue in more brilliant fashion for all eternity, and that your bounties, samples of which are to be observed in this transitory world, will persist in the abode of bliss in even more glittering fashion, and that those who long for them in this world will accompany them and be together with them for all eternity.

Also, relying on hundreds of evident miracles and decisive signs, foremost Your Most Noble Messenger and the All-Wise Holy Book, and the prophets with their luminous spirits, and the saints, who are spiritual poles with their light-filled hearts, and the purified scholars with their enlightened intellects, relying on Your repeated threats and promises in all the sacred scriptures, and trusting in Your sacred attributes, like power, mercy, favor, wisdom, glory, and beauty, and on Your functions, and the dignity of Your glory, and the sovereignty of Your dominicality, and in consequence of their illuminations and visions and beliefs at the degree of ‘the knowledge of certainty,’ give the glad tidings to men and jinn of eternal happiness and inform them of Hell for the people of misguidance; they believe this and testify to it.O All-Powerful and Wise One! O Most Merciful and Compassionate! O Munificent One True to His Promise! O All-Compelling One of Glory, One of Dignity, Grandeur, and Wrath!

You are utterly exempt from and exalted above giving the lie to so many loyal friends, and so many promises, and attributes and functions, and denying the certain demands of the sovereignty of Your dominicality and the endless prayers and supplications of Your innumerable acceptable servants, whom You love and who attract Your love by assenting to You and obeying You; and You are exempt from confirming the denial of resurrection of the people of misguidance and unbelief, who through their disbelief and rebellion and denial of Your promises, offend the magnificence of Your grandeur and affront Your dignity and glory and the honor of Your Godhead, and sadden the compassion of Your dominicality. I declare Your justice, beauty, and mercy to be exempt from such infinite tyranny, such ugliness. With all the particles of my being, I want to recite the verse,Glory be to Him! He is high above all that they say! —Exalted and Great [beyond measure]! (17:43).

Indeed, those truthful envoys of Yours and heralds of Your sovereignty testify with ‘absolute certainty,’ ‘knowledge of certainty,’ and ‘the vision of certainty’ to the treasuries of Your mercy in the hereafter and the stores of Your bounties in the everlasting realm, and to the wondrously beautiful manifestations of Your Beautiful Names, which will be manifested totally in the abode of bliss, and they give good news of these. Believing that the supreme ray of Your Name of Truth, which is the source, sun, and protector of all realities, is this truth of the resurrection and Great Gathering, they teach it to Your servants. O Sustainer of the Prophets and Veracious Ones!

They are all subservient to You and charged with their duties in Your dominions through Your command and power, Your will and planning, Your knowledge and wisdom. They demonstrate through sanctifying, exalting, and extolling You, and declaring You to be One, that the globe is a vast place for Your remembrance and the universe, a huge mosque. O My Sustainer and Sustainer of the Heavens and Earth! O My Creator and Creator of All Things! For the sake of Your power, will, wisdom, sovereignty, and mercy, which subjugate the heavens and their stars, the earth and all it contains, and all creatures together with all their attributes and acts, subject my soul to me and subjugate to me my wishes! Subjugate the hearts of people to the Risale-i Nur, so they may serve the Holy Book and belief! And grant me and my brothers perfect belief and a happy death! As You subjugated the sea to Moses, fire to Abraham, the mountains and iron to David, jinn and men to Solomon, and the sun and moon to Muhammad, subjugate hearts and minds to the Risale-i Nur! Preserve me and all the students of the Risale-i Nur from the evil of the soul and Satan, and the torment of the grave and Hell-fire, and grant us happiness in Paradise! Amen. Amen. Amen.

A Special Prayer For Spiritual Healing

A Special Prayer For Spiritual Healing

The gist of the well-known story of Job is as follows:

While afflicted with numerous wounds and sores for a long time, he recalled the great recompense to be had for his sickness, and endured it with utmost patience. But later, when the worms generated by his wounds penetrated to his heart and his tongue, the seat of the remembrance and knowledge of God, he feared that his duty of worship would suffer. And so he said in supplication not for the sake of his own comfort, but for the sake of his worship of God: “And (remember) Job, when He cried to his Lord, “Truly distress has seized me, but Thou art the Most Merciful of those that are merciful.” (21:83).” God Almighty then accepted this pure sincere, disinterested and devout supplication in the most miraculous fashion. He granted to Job perfect good health and made manifest in him all kinds of compassion.

Corresponding to the outer wounds and sicknesses of Job, we have inner sicknesses of the spirit and heart. If our inner being were to be turned outward, and our outer being turned inward, we would appear more wounded and diseased than Job. For each transgression that we commit and each doubt that enters our mind, inflicts wounds on our heart and our spirit.

The wounds of Job were of such a nature as to threaten his brief worldly life, but our inner wounds threaten our infinitely long everlasting life. We need the supplication of Job thousands of times more than he did himself. Just as the worms that arose from his wounds penetrated to his heart and tongue, so too the wounds that transgression inflicts upon us and the temptations and doubts that arise from those wounds will penetrate our inner heart, the seat of belief, and thus wound belief. Penetrating too the spiritual joy of the tongue, the interpreter of belief, they cause it to shun in revulsion the remembrance of God, and reduce it to silence.

Transgression, penetrating to the heart, will blacken and darken it until it extinguishes the light of belief. There is a path leading to unbelief within each transgression. Unless that transgression is swiftly obliterated by seeking God’s pardon, it will grow from a worm into a snake that gnaws on the heart.

For example, a man who secretly commits a shameful transgression will fear the disgrace that results if others become aware of it. Thus the existence of angels and spirit beings will be hard for him to endure, and he will long to deny it, even on the strength of the slightest indication.

Similarly, one who commits a major transgression deserving of the torment of Hell will desire the non-existence of Hell wholeheartedly, and whenever he hears of the threat of Hell-fire. He will dare to deny it on the strength of a slight indication and doubt, unless he takes up in protection the shield of repentance and seeking forgiveness.

A wide gate to destruction will be opened in front of him. The wretch does not know that although he is delivered by denial from the slight trouble of duty of worship, he has made himself, by that same denial, the target for millions of troubles that are far more awesome. Fleeing from the bite of a gnat, he welcomes the bite of the snake.

A Booklet For A Sick

A Booklet For A Sick

This treatise consists of Twenty-Five Remedies. It was written as a salve, a solace, and a prescription for the sick, and as a visit to the sick and a wish for their speedy recovery.

Warning and Apology

This immaterial prescription was written with a speed greater than all my other writings, and since time could not be found in which to correct and study it, unlike all the others, it was read only once—and that at great speed like its composition. That is to say, it has remained in the disordered state of a first draft. I did not consider it necessary to go over carefully the things which had occurred to me in a natural manner, lest they be spoilt by arranging them and paying them undue attention. Readers and especially the sick should not feel upset and offended at any disagreeable expressions or harsh words and phrases; let them rather pray for me.

In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate.

“Those who say when afflicted by calamity: “To God do we belong and to Him is our return.”(2:156)

“Who gives me food and drink; And when I am ill it is He Who cures me.”(26:79-80)

I will describe briefly Twenty-Five Remedies, which may offer true consolation and a beneficial cure for the sick and those struck by disaster, who form one tenth of mankind.

FIRST REMEDY

O inevitable sick person! Do not be anxious, have patience! Your illness is not a malady for you; it is a sort of cure. For life departs like capital. If it yields no fruits, it is wasted. And if it passes in ease and heedlessness, it passes most swiftly. Illness makes that capital of yours yield huge profits. Moreover, it does not allow your life to pass quickly; it restrains it and lengthens it, so that it will depart after yielding its fruits. An indication that your life is lengthened through illness is the following much repeated proverb: “The times of calamity are long, the times of happiness, most short.”

SECOND REMEDY

O ill person who lacks patience! Be patient, indeed, offer thanks! Your illness may transform each of the minutes of your life into the equivalent of an hour’s worship. For worship is of two kinds. One is positive like the well-known worship of supplication and the five daily prayers. The other are negative forms of worship like illness and calamities. By means of these, those afflicted realize their impotence and weakness; they beseech their All-Compassionate Creator and take refuge in Him; they manifest worship which is sincere and without hypocrisy. Yes, there is a sound narration stating that a life passed in illness is counted as worship for the believer—on condition he does not complain about God. It is even established by sound narrations and by those who uncover the realities of creation that one minute’s illness of some who are completely patient and thankful becomes the equivalent of an hour’s worship and a minute’s illness of certain perfected men the equivalent of a day’s worship. Thus, you should not complain about an illness, which as though transforms one minute of your life into a thousand minutes and gains for you long life; you should rather offer thanks.

THIRD REMEDY

Impatient sick person! The fact that those who come to this world continuously depart, and the young grow old, and man perpetually revolves amid death and separation testifies that he did not come to this world to enjoy himself and receive pleasure.

Moreover, while man is the most perfect, the most elevated, of living beings and the best endowed in regard to members and faculties, through thinking of past pleasures and future pains, he passes only a grievous, troublesome life, lower than the animals. This means that man did not come to this world in order to live in fine manner and pass his life in ease and pleasure. Rather, possessing vast capital, he came here to work and do trade for an eternal, everlasting life.

The capital given to man is his lifetime. Had there been no illness, good health and well-being would have caused heedlessness, for they show the world to be pleasant and make the Hereafter forgotten. They do not want death and the grave to be thought of; they cause the capital of life to be wasted on trifles. Whereas illness suddenly opens the eyes, it says to the body: “You are not immortal. You have not been left to your own devices. You have a duty. Give up your pride, think of the One Who created you. Know that you will enter the grave, so prepare yourself for it!” Thus, from this point of view, illness is an admonishing guide and advisor that never deceives. It should not be complained about in this respect, indeed, should be thanked for. And if it is not too severe, patience should be sought to endure it.

FOURTH REMEDY

Plaintive ill person! It is your right, not to complain, but to offer thanks and be patient. For your body and members and faculties are not your property. You did not make them, and you did not buy them from other workshops. That means they are the property of another. Their owner has disposal over his property as he wishes.

As is stated in other writings, an extremely wealthy and skilful craftsman, for example, employs a poor man as a model in order to show off his fine art and valuable wealth. In return for a wage, for a brief hour he clothes the poor man in a bejeweled and most skillfully wrought garment. He works it on him and gives it various states. In order to display the extraordinary varieties of his art, he cuts the garment, alters it, and lengthens and shortens it. Does the poor man working for a wage have the right to say to that person: “You are causing me trouble, you are causing me distress with the form you have given it, making me bow down and stand up;” has he the right to tell him that he is spoiling his fine appearance by cutting and shortening the garment which makes him beautiful? Can he tell him he is being unkind and unfair?

O sick person! Just like in this comparison, in order to display the garment of your body with which He has clothed you, bejeweled as it is with luminous faculties like the eye, the ear, the reason, and the heart, and the embroideries of His Most Beautiful Names, the All-Glorious Maker makes you revolve amid numerous states and changes you in many situations. Like you learn of His Name of Provider through hunger, come to know also His Name of Healer through your illness. Since suffering and calamities show the decrees of some of His Names, within those flashes of wisdom and rays of mercy are many instances of good to be found. If the veil of illness, which you fear and loathe, was to be lifted, behind it you would find many agreeable and beautiful meanings.

FIFTH REMEDY

O you who is afflicted with illness! Through experience I have formed the opinion at this time that sickness is a Divine bounty for some people, a gift of the Most Merciful One. Although I am not worthy of it, for the past eight or nine years, a number of young people have come to me in connection with illness, seeking my prayers. I have noticed that each of those ill youths had begun to think of the Hereafter to a greater degree than other young people. He lacked the drunkenness of youth. He was saving himself to a degree from animal desires and heedlessness. So I would consider them and then warn them that their illnesses were a Divine bounty within the limits of their endurance. I would say: “I am not opposed to this illness of yours, my brother. I don’t feel compassion and pity for you because of your illness, so that I should pray for you. Try to be patient until illness awakens you completely, and after it has performed its duty, God willing, the Compassionate Creator will restore you to health.”

I would also say to them: “Through the calamity of good health, some of your fellows become neglectful, give up the five daily prayers, do not think of the grave, and forget God Almighty. Through the superficial pleasure of a brief hour’s worldly life, they shake and damage an unending, eternal life, and even destroy it. Due to illness, you see the grave, which you will in any event enter, and the dwellings of the Hereafter beyond it, and you act in accordance with them. That means for you, illness is good health, while for some of your peers good health is a sickness…”

SIXTH REMEDY

O sick person who complains about his suffering! I say to you: think of your past life and remember the pleasurable and happy days and the distressing and troublesome times. For sure, you will either say “Oh!” or “Ah!” That is, your heart and tongue will either say “All praise and thanks be to God!”, or “Alas and alack!” Note carefully, what makes you exclaim “Praise and thanks be to God!” is thinking of the pains and calamities that have befallen you; it induces a sort of pleasure so that your heart offers thanks. For the passing of pain is a pleasure. With the passing of pains and calamities, a legacy of pleasure is left in the spirit, which on being aroused by thinking, pours forth from the spirit with thanks.

What makes you exclaim “Alas and alack!” are the pleasurable and happy times you have experienced in the former times, which, with their passing leave a legacy of constant pain in your spirit. Whenever you think of them, the pain is again stimulated, causing regret and sorrow to pour forth.

Since one day’s illicit pleasure sometimes causes a year’s suffering in the spirit, and with the pain of a fleeting day’s illness are many days’ pleasure and recompense in addition to the pleasure at being relieved at its passing and saved from it, think of the result of this temporary illness with which you are now afflicted, and of the merits of its inner face. Say: “All is from God! This too will pass!”, and offer thanks instead of complaining.

SIXTH REMEDY

O brother who thinks of the pleasures of this world and suffers distress at illness! If this world was everlasting, and if on our way there was no death, and if the winds of separation and decease did not blow, and if there were no winters of the spirit in the calamitous and stormy future, I would have pitied you together with you. But since one day the world will bid us to leave it and will close its ears to our cries, we must forego our love of it now through the warnings of these illnesses, before it drives us out. We must try to abandon it in our hearts before it abandons us.

Yes, illness utters this warning to us: “Your body is not composed of stone and iron, but of various materials which are always disposed to parting. Leave off your pride, understand your impotence, recognize your Owner, know your duties, learn why you came to this world!” It declares this secretly in the heart’s ear.

Moreover, since the pleasures and enjoyment of this world do not continue, and particularly if they are illicit, they are both fleeting, and full of pain, and sinful, do not weep on the pretext of illness because you have lost those pleasures. On the contrary, think of the aspects of worship and reward in the Hereafter to be found in illness, and try to receive pleasure from those.

SEVENTH REMEDY

O sick person who has lost the pleasures of health! Your illness does not spoil the pleasure of Divine bounties; on the contrary, it causes them to be experienced and increases them. For if something is continuous, it loses its effect. The people of reality even say that “Things are known through their opposites.” For example, if there were no darkness, light would not be known and would contain no pleasure. If there was no cold, heat could not be comprehended. If there were no hunger, food would afford no pleasure. If there were no thirst of the stomach, there would be no pleasure in drinking water. If there were no sickness, no pleasure would be had from good health.

The All-Wise Creator’s decking out man with truly numerous members and faculties, to the extent that he may experience and recognize the innumerable varieties of bounties in the universe, shows that He wants to make man aware of every sort of His bounty and to acquaint him with them and to impel man to offer constant thanks. Since this is so, He will give illness, sickness, and suffering, the same as He bestows good health and well-being. I ask you: “If there had not been this illness in your head or in your hand or stomach, would you have perceived the pleasurable and enjoyable Divine bounty of the good health of your head, hand or stomach, and offered thanks? For sure, it is not offering thanks for it, you would not have even thought of it! You would have unconsciously spent that good health on heedlessness, and perhaps even on dissipation.

EIGHTH REMEDY

O sick person who thinks of the Hereafter! Sickness washes away the dirt of sins like soap, and cleanses. It is established in a sound Saying that illnesses are atonement for sins. And in another Saying, it says: “As ripe fruits fall on their tree being shaken, so the sins of a believer fall away on his shaking with illness.”

Sins are the lasting illnesses of eternal life, and in this worldly life they are sicknesses for the heart, conscience, and spirit. If you are patient and do not complain, you will be saved through this temporary sickness from numerous perpetual sicknesses. If you do not think of your sins, or do not know the Hereafter, or do not recognize God, you suffer from an illness so fearsome it is a million times worse than your present minor illnesses. Cry out at that, for all the beings in the world are connected with your heart, spirit, and soul. Those connections are continuously severed by death and separation, opening up in you innumerable wounds. Particularly since you do not know the Hereafter and imagine death to be eternal non-existence, it is quite simply as though lacerated and bruised, your being suffers illness to the extent of the world.

Thus, the first thing you have to do is to search for the cure of belief, which is a certain healing remedy for the innumerable illnesses of that infinitely wounded and sick, extensive immaterial being of yours; you have to correct your beliefs, and the shortest way of finding such a cure is to recognize the power and mercy of the All-Powerful One of Glory by means of the window of your weakness and impotence shown you behind the curtain of heedlessness, rent by your physical illness.

Yes, one who does not recognize God is afflicted with a world-full of tribulations. While the world of one who does recognize Him is full of light and spiritual happiness; he perceives these in accordance with the strength of his belief. The suffering resulting from insignificant physical illnesses is dissolved by the immaterial joy, healing, and pleasure that arise from this belief; the suffering melts away.

NINTH REMEDY

O sick person who recognizes his Creator! The pain, fear, and anxiety in illness is because it is sometimes leads to death. Since superficially and to the heedless view death is frightening, illnesses which may lead to it cause fear and apprehension.

So know firstly and believe firmly that the appointed hour is determined and does not change. Those weeping beside the grievously sick and those in perfect health have died, while the grievously sick have been cured and lived.

Secondly: Death is not terrifying, as it appears to be superficially. Through the light afforded by the All-Wise Holy Book, in many parts of the Writings we have proved in completely certain and indubitable fashion that for believers death is to be discharged from the burdensome duties of life. And for them it is a rest from worship, which is the instruction and training in the arena of trial of this world. It is also a means of their rejoining friends and relations, ninety-nine out of a hundred of whom have already departed for the next world. And it is a means of entering their true homeland and eternal abodes of happiness. It is also an invitation to the gardens of Paradise from the dungeon of this world. And it is the time to receive their wage from the munificence of the Most Compassionate Creator in return for service rendered to Him. Since the reality of death is this, it should not be regarded as terrifying, but on the contrary, as the introduction to mercy and happiness.

Moreover, some of the people of God fearing death has not been out of terror at it, but due to their hope of gaining more merit through performing more good works with the continuation of the duties of life.

Yes, for the people of belief, death is the door to Divine mercy, while for the people of misguidance; it is the pit of everlasting darkness.

TENTH REMEDY

O sick person who worries unnecessarily! You worry at the severity of your illness and that worry increases it. If you want your illness to be less severe, try not to worry. That is, think of the benefits of your illness, the recompense for it, and that it will pass quickly; it will remove the worry and cut the illness at the root.

Indeed, worry increases illness twice over. Worry causes an immaterial illness of the heart beneath the physical illness; the physical illness rests on that and persists. If the worry ceases through submission, contentment, and thinking of the wisdom in the illness, an important part of the illness is extirpated; it becomes lighter and in part disappears. Sometimes a minor physical illness increases tenfold just through anxiety. On the anxiety ceasing, nine tenths of the illness disappears.

Worry increases illness, so is it also like an accusation against Divine wisdom and a criticism of Divine mercy and complaint against the Compassionate Creator. For this reason, contrary to his intentions, the one who does so receives a rebuff and it increases his illness. Yes, just as thanks increases bounty, so also complaint increases illness and tribulations.

Furthermore, worry is itself an illness. The cure for it is to know the wisdom in illness and the purpose of it. Since you have learnt its purpose and benefit, apply that salve to your worry and find relief! Say “Ah!” instead of “Oh!”, and “All praise be to God for every situation” instead of sighing and lamenting.

ELEVENTH REMEDY

O my impatient sick brother! Although illness causes you an immediate suffering, the passing of your illness in the past until today produces an immaterial pleasure and happiness for the spirit arising from the reward received for enduring it. From today forward, and even from this hour, there is no illness, and certainly no pain is to be had from non-being. And if there is no pain, there cannot be any grief. You become impatient because you imagine things wrongly. Because, with the physical aspect of your time of illness prior to today departing, its pain has departed with it; only its reward and the pleasure of its passing remains. While it should give you profit and happiness, to think of past days and feel grieved and become impatient is crazy. Future days have not yet come. To think of them now, and by imagining a day that does not exist and an illness that does not exist and grief that does not exist to be grieved and display impatience, is to give the color of existence to three degrees of non-existence—if that is not crazy, what is?

Since, if the hour previous to the present was one of illness, it produces joy; and since the time subsequent to the present hour is non-existent, and the illness is non-existent, and the grief is non-existent, do not scatter the power of patience given you by Almighty God to right and left, but muster it in the face of pain of the present hour; say: “O Most Patient One!” and withstand it.

TWELFTH REMEDY

O sick person who due to illness cannot perform his worship and invocations and feels grief at the deprivation! Know that it is stated in a Saying that “A pious believer who due to illness cannot perform the invocations he normally regularly performs, receives an equal reward.” On an ill person carrying out his obligatory worship as far as it is possible with patience and relying on God, during that time of severe illness, the illness takes the place of Tradition worship—and in sincere form.

Moreover, illness makes a person understand his impotence and weakness. It causes him to offer supplication both verbally and through the tongue of his impotence and weakness. Almighty God bestowed on man a boundless impotence and infinite weakness so that he would perpetually seek refuge at the Divine Court and beseech and supplicate. According to the meaning of the verse, Say: Your Sustainer would not concern Himself with you if it was not for your prayers; that is, “what importance would you have if you did not offer prayer and supplication?” the wisdom in man’s creation and reason for his value is sincere prayer and supplication. Since one cause of this is illness, from this point of view it should not be complained about, but God should be thanked for it, and the tap of supplication which illness opens should not be closed by regaining health.

THIRTEENTH REMEDY

O unhappy person who complains at illness! For some people illness is an important treasury, a most valuable Divine gift. Every sick person can think of his illness as being of that sort.

The appointed hour is not known: in order to deliver man from absolute despair and absolute heedlessness, and to hold him between hope and fear and so preserve both this world and the Hereafter, in His wisdom Almighty God has concealed the appointed hour. The appointed hour may come at any time; if it captures man in heedlessness, it may cause grievous harm to eternal life. But illness dispels the heedlessness; it makes a person think of the Hereafter; it recalls death, and thus he may prepare himself. Some illnesses are so profitable that they gain for a person in twenty days a rank they could not otherwise have gained in twenty years.

Since illnesses contain such benefits, they should be not complained about, but borne with patience and relying on God, indeed, thanking God and having confidence in His mercy.

FOURTEENTH REMEDY

O sick person whose eyes have developed cataracts! If you knew what a light and spiritual eye is to be found beneath the cataract that may cover a believer’s eyes, you would exclaim: “A hundred thousand thanks to my Compassionate Sustainer.” I shall recount an incident to you to explain this salve. It is as follows:

One time, the aunt of Süleyman from Barla, who served me for eight years with total loyalty and willingness, became blind. Thinking well of me a hundred times more than was my due, the righteous woman caught me by the door of the mosque and asked me to pray for her sight to be restored. So I made the blessed woman’s righteousness the intercessor for my supplication, and beseeching Almighty God, I prayed: “O Lord! Restore her sight out of respect for her righteousness.” Two days later, an oculist from Burdur came and removed the cataract. Forty days later she again lost her sight. I was most upset and prayed fervently for her. God willing, the prayer was accepted for her life in the Hereafter, otherwise that prayer of mine would have been a most mistaken malediction for her. For forty days had remained till her death; forty days later she had died—May God have mercy on her.

Thus, in place of the woman looking sorrowfully at the gardens of Barla with the eye of old age, she profited by in her grave being able to gaze for forty thousand days on the gardens of Paradise. For her belief was strong and she was completely righteous.

Yes, if a believer loses his sight and enters the grave blind, in accordance with his degree he may gaze on the world of light to a much greater extent than others in their graves. Just as we see many things in this world that blind believers do not see, if they depart with belief, those blind people see to a greater extent than other dead in their graves. As though looking through the most powerful telescopes, they can see and gaze on the gardens of Paradise like the cinema, in accordance with their degree.

Thus, with thanks and patience you can find beneath the veil on your present eye an eye which is thus light-filled, and with which while beneath the earth you can see and observe Paradise above the skies. That which will raise the veil from your eye, the eye doctor that will allow you to look with that eye, is the All-Wise Holy Book.

FIFTEENTH REMEDY

O sick person who sighs and laments! Do not look at the outward aspect of illness and sigh, look at its meaning and be pleased. If the meaning of illness had not been good, the All-Compassionate Creator would not have given illness to the servants He loves most. Whereas, there is a Saying the meaning of which is, “Those afflicted with the severest trials are the prophets, then the saints and those like them.” That is, “Those most afflicted with tribulations and difficulties are the best of men, the most perfect.” Foremost the Prophet Job and the other prophets, then the saints, then the righteous, have regarded the illnesses they have suffered as sincere worship, as gifts of the Most Merciful; they have offered thanks in patience. They have seen them as surgical operations performed by the All-Compassionate Creator’s mercy.

O you who cries out and laments! If you want to join this luminous caravan, offer thanks in patience. For if you complain, they will not accept you. You will fall into the pits of the people of misguidance, and travel a dark road.

Yes, there are some illnesses which if they lead to death, are like a sort of martyrdom; they result in a degree of sainthood like martyrdom. For example, those who die from the illnesses accompanying childbirth and pains of the abdomen, and by drowning, burning, and plague, become martyrs. So also there are many blessed illnesses which gain the degree of sainthood for those who die from them. Moreover, since illness lessens love of the world and attachment to it, it lightens parting from the world through death, which for the worldly is extremely grievous and painful, and it sometimes even makes it desirable.

SIXTEENTH REMEDY

O sick person who complains of his distress! Illness prompts respect and compassion, which are most important and good in human social life. For it saves man from self-sufficiency, which drives him to unsociableness and unkindness. For according to the meaning of, “Indeed man transgresses all bounds” In that he looks upon himself as self-sufficient, an evil-commanding soul which feels self-sufficient due to good health and well-being, does not feel respect towards his brothers in many instances, who are deserving of it. And he does not feel compassion towards the sick and those smitten by disaster, although they deserve kindness and pity. Whenever he is ill, he understands his own impotence and want, and he has respect towards his brothers who are worthy of it. He feels respect towards his believing brothers who visit him or assist him. And he feels human kindness, which arises from fellow-feeling, and compassion for those struck by disaster—a most important Islamic characteristic. And comparing them to himself, he pities them in the true meaning of the word and feels compassion for them. He does what he can to help them, and at the very least prays for them and goes to visit them to ask them how they are, which is Tradition according to the Law, and thus earns reward.

SEVENTEENTH REMEDY

O sick person who complains at not being able to perform good works due to illness! Offer thanks! It is illness that opens to you the door of the most sincere of good works. In addition to continuously gaining reward for the sick person and for those who look after him for God’s sake, illness is a most important means for supplications being accepted.

Indeed, there is significant reward for believers for looking after the sick. Enquiring after their health and visiting the sick—on condition it does not tax them—is Tradition and also atonement for sins. There is a Saying which says, “Receive the prayers of the sick, for their prayers are acceptable.”

Especially if the sick are relations, and parents in particular, to look after them is important worship, yielding significant reward. To please a sick person’s heart and console him, is like significant alms-giving. Fortunate is the person who pleases the easily touched hearts of father and mother at the time of illness, and receives their prayer. Indeed, even the angels applaud before loyal scenes of those good offspring who respond at the time of their illness to the compassion of their parents—those most worthy of respect in the life of society—with perfect respect and filial kindness, showing the exaltedness of humanity.

Yes, there are pleasures at the time of illness which arise from the kindness, pity, and compassion of those around them, and are most pleasant and agreeable and reduce the pains of illness to nothing. The acceptability of the prayers of the sick is an important matter. For the past thirty or forty years, I myself have prayed to be cured from the illness of lumbago from which I suffer. However, I understood that the illness had been given for prayer. Since through prayer, prayer cannot be removed, that is, since prayer cannot remove itself, I understood that the results of prayer pertain to the Hereafter, and that it is itself a sort of worship, for through illness one understands one’s impotence and seeks refuge at the Divine Court. Therefore, although for thirty years I have offered supplications to be healed and apparently my prayer was not accepted, it did not occur to me to give up the supplication. Because illness is the time of supplication; to be cured is not the result of the supplication. If the All-Wise and Compassionate One bestows healing, He bestows it out of His abundant grace.

Furthermore, if supplications are not accepted in the form we wish, it may not be said that they have not been accepted. The All-Wise Creator knows better than us; He gives whatever is in our interests. Sometimes for our interests, he directs our prayers for this world towards the Hereafter, and accepts them in that way. In any event, a supplication that acquires sincerity due to illness and arises from weakness, impotence, humility and need in particular, is very close to being acceptable. Illness is the means to supplication that is thus sincere. Both the sick who are religious, and believers who look after the sick, should take advantage of this supplication.

EIGHTEENTH REMEDY

O sick person who gives up offering thanks and takes up complaining! Complaint arises from a right. None of your rights have been lost that you should complain. Indeed, there are numerous thanks which are an obligation for you, a right over you, and these you have not performed. Without Almighty God giving you the right, you are complaining as though demanding rights in a manner which is not rightful. You cannot look at others superior to you in degree who are healthy, and complain. You are rather charged with looking at the sick who from the point of view of health are at a lower degree than yourself, and offering thanks. If your hand is broken, look at theirs, which is severed. If you have only one eye, look at the blind, who lack both eyes. And offer thanks to God!

For sure, no one has the right to look to those superior to him in regard to bounties and to complain. And in tribulations it is everyone’s right to look to those above themselves in regard to tribulation, so that they should offer thanks. This mystery has been explained in a number of places in the Writings with a comparison; a summary of it is as follows:

A person takes a wretched man to the top of a minaret. On every step he gives him a different gift, a different bounty. Right at the top of the minaret he gives him the largest present. Although he wants thanks and gratitude in return for all those various gifts, the peevish man forgets the presents he has received on each of the stairs, or considers them to be of no importance, and offering no thanks, looks above him and starts to complain, saying, “If only this minaret had been higher I could have climbed even further. Why isn’t it as tall as that mountain over there or that other tower?” If he begins to complain like this, what great ingratitude it would be, what a wrong!

In just the same way, man comes into existence from nothing, not as a rock or a tree or an animal, but becomes a man and a Muslim, and most of the time sees good health and acquires a high level of bounties. Despite all this, to complain and display impatience because he is not worthy of some bounties, or because he loses them through wrong choice or abuse, or because he could not obtain them, and to criticize Divine dominicality saying “What have I done that this has happened to me?”, is a condition and immaterial sickness more calamitous than the physical one. Like fighting with a broken hand, complaint makes his illness worse. Sensible is the one who in accordance with the meaning of the verse, “Those who when struck by calamity say: To God do we belong, and to God is our return submits and is patient, so that the illness may complete its duty, then depart.” (2:156)

NINETEENTH REMEDY

As the term of the Eternally Besought One, ‘the Most Beautiful Names’ shows, all the Names of the All-Beauteous One of Glory are beautiful. Among beings, the most subtle, the most beautiful, the most comprehensive mirror of Eternal Besoughtedness is life. The mirror to the beautiful is beautiful. The mirror that shows the virtues of beauty becomes beautiful. Just as whatever is done to the mirror by such beauty is good and beautiful, whatever befalls life too, in respect of reality, is good. Because it displays the beautiful impresses of the Most Beautiful Names, which are good and beautiful.

If life passes monotonously with permanent health and well-being, it becomes a deficient mirror. Indeed, in one respect, it tells of non-existence, non-being, and nothingness, and causes weariness. It reduces the life’s value, and transforms the pleasure of life into distress. Because thinking he will pass his time quickly, out of boredom, a person throws himself either into vice or into amusements. Like a prison sentence, he becomes hostile to his valuable life and wants to kill it and make it pass quickly. Whereas a life that revolves in change and action and different states makes its value felt, and makes known the importance and pleasure of life. Even if it is in hardship and tribulation, such a person does not want his life to pass quickly. He does not complain out of boredom, saying, “Alas! The sun hasn’t set yet,” or, “it is still nighttime.”

Yes, ask a fine gentleman who is rich and idle and living in the lap of luxury, “How are you?” You are bound to hear a pathetic reply like: “The time never passes. Let’s have a game of backgammon. Or let’s find some amusement to pass the time.” Or else you will hear complaints arising from worldly ambition, like: “I haven’t got that; if only I had done such-and-such.”

Then ask someone struck by disaster or a worker or poor man living in hardship: “How are you?” If he is sensible, he will reply: “All thanks be to God, I am working. If only the evening did not come so quickly, I could have finished this work! Time passes so quickly, and so does life, they pass so quickly. For sure things are hard for me, but that will pass too. Everything passes quickly.” He in effect says how valuable life is and how regretful he is at its passing. That means he understands the pleasure and value of life through hardship and labor. As for ease and health, they make life bitter and make it wanted to be passed.

My brother who is sick! Know that the origin and leaven of calamities and evils, and even of sins, is non-existence, as is proved decisively and in detail in other parts of the Risale-i Nur. As for non-existence, it is evil. It is because monotonous states like ease, silence, tranquility, and arrest are close to non-existence and nothingness that they make felt the darkness of non-existence and cause distress. As for action and change, they are existence and make existence felt. And existence is pure good, it is light.

Since the reality is thus, your illness has been sent to your being as a guest to perform many duties like purifying your valuable life, and strengthening it and making it progress, and to make the other human faculties in your being turn in assistance towards your sick member, and to display various Names of the All-Wise Maker. God willing, it will carry out its duties quickly and depart. And it will say to good health: “Come, and stay permanently in my place, and carry out your duties. This house is yours. Remain here in good health.”

TWENTIETH REMEDY

O sick person who is searching for a remedy for his ills! Illness is of two sorts. One sort is real, the other, imaginary. As for the real sort, the All-Wise and Glorious Healer has stored up in His mighty pharmacy of the earth a cure for every illness. It is licit to obtain medicines and use them as treatment, but one should know that their effect and the cure are from Almighty God. He gives the cure just as He provides the medicine.

Following the recommendations of skilful and God-fearing doctors is an important medicine. For most illnesses arise from abuses, lack of abstinence, wastefulness, mistakes, dissipation, and lack of care. A religious doctor will certainly give advice and orders within the bounds of the lawful. He will forbid abuses and excesses, and give consolation. The sick person has confidence in his orders and consolation, and his illness lessens; it produces as easiness for him in place of distress.

But when it comes to imaginary illness, the most effective medicine for it is to give it no importance. The more importance is given it, the more it grows and swells. If no importance is given it, it lessens and disperses. The more bees are upset the more they swarm around a person’s head and if no attention is paid to them they disperse. So too, the more importance one pays to a piece of string waving in front of one’s eyes in the darkness and to the apprehension it causes one, the more it grows and makes one flee from it like a madman. While if one pays it no importance, one sees that it is an ordinary bit of string and not a snake, and laughs at one’s fright and anxiety.

If hypochondria continues a long time, it is transformed into reality. It is a bad illness for the nervous and those given to imaginings; such people make a mountain out of a molehill and their morale is destroyed. Especially if they encounter unkind ‘half’ doctors or unfair doctors, it further provokes their hypochondria. For the rich, they lose their wealth, or they lose their wits, or their health.

TWENTY-FIRST REMEDY

My sick brother! There is physical pain with your illness, but a significant immaterial pleasure encompasses you that will remove the effect of your physical pain. For if you have father, mother, and relations, their most pleasurable compassion towards which you have forgotten since childhood will be reawakened and you will see again their kind looks which you received in childhood. In addition, the friendships around you which had remained secret and hidden again look towards you with love through the attraction of illness, and so, in the face of these your physical pain becomes very cheap. Also, since those whom you have served proudly through the decree of illness now serve you kindly, you have become a master to the masters. Moreover, since you have attracted towards yourself the fellow-feeling and human kindness in people, you have found numerous helpful friends and kind companions. And again, you have received the order from your illness to rest from many taxing duties, and you are taking a rest. For sure, in the face of these immaterial pleasures, your minor pain should drive you to thanks, not complaint.

TWENTY-SECOND REMEDY

My brother who suffers from a severe illness like apoplexy! Firstly I give you the good news that apoplexy is considered blessed for believers. A long time ago I used to hear this from holy men and I did not know the reason. Now, one reason for it occurs to me as follows:

In order to attain union with Almighty God, be saved from the great spiritual dangers of this world, and to obtain eternal happiness, the people of God have chosen to follow two principles:

The First is contemplation of death. Thinking that like the world is transitory, they too are transient guests charged with duties, they worked for eternal life in that way.

The Second: Through fasting, religious exercises and asceticism, they tried to kill the evil-commanding soul and so be saved from its dangers and from the blind emotions.

And you, my brother who has lost the health of half his body! Without choosing it, you have been given these two principles, which are short and easy and the cause of happiness. Thus, the state of your being perpetually warns you of the fleeting nature of the world and that man is transient. The world can no longer drown you, nor heedlessness close your eyes. And for sure, the evil-commanding soul cannot deceive with base lusts and animal appetites someone in the state of half a man; he is quickly saved from the trials of the soul.

Thus, through the mystery of belief in God and submission to Him and reliance on Him, a believer can benefit in a brief time from a severe illness like apoplexy, like the severe trials of the saints. Then a severe illness such as that becomes exceedingly cheap.

TWENTY-THIRD REMEDY

Unhappy ill person who is alone and a stranger! Even if your aloneness and exile together with your illness were to arouse sympathy towards you in the hardest hearts and attract kindness and compassion, could that be a substitute for your All-Compassionate Creator? For He presents Himself to us at the start of all the Holy Book’s Chapters with the attributes of “the Merciful and the Compassionate,” and with one flash of His compassion makes all mothers nurture their young with that wonderful tenderness, and with one manifestation of His mercy every spring fills the face of the earth with bounties, and a single manifestation of His mercy is eternal life in Paradise together with all its wonders. Then surely your relation to Him through belief, your recognizing Him and beseeching Him through the tongue of impotence of your illness, and your illness of loneliness in exile, will attract the glance of His mercy towards you, which takes the place of everything. Since He exists and He looks to you, everything exists for you. Those who are truly alone and in exile are those who are not connected with Him through belief and submission, or attach no importance to that relation.

TWENTY-FOURTH REMEDY

O you who look after innocent sick children or after the elderly, who are like innocent children! Before you is important trade for the Hereafter. Gain that trade through enthusiasm and endeavor! It is established by the people of reality that the illnesses of innocent children are like exercises and training for their delicate bodies, and injections and dominical training to allow them to withstand in the future the upheavals of the world; that in addition to many instances of wisdom pertaining to the child’s worldly life, instead of the atonement for sins in adults which looks to spiritual life and is the means to purifying life, illnesses are like injections ensuring the child’s spiritual progress in the future or in the Hereafter; and that the merits accruing from such illnesses pass to the book of good works of the parents, and particularly of the mother who through the mystery of compassion prefers the health of her child to her own health.

As for looking after the elderly, it is established in sound narrations and many historical events that together with receiving huge reward, to receive the prayers of the elderly and especially of parents, and to make their hearts happy and serve them loyally, is the means to happiness both in this world and in the Hereafter. And it is established by many events that a fortunate child who obeys to the letter his elderly parents will be treated in the same way by his children, and that if a wretched child wounds his parents he will be punished by means of many disasters in this world as well as in the Hereafter. Yes, to look after not only relatives who are elderly or innocents, but also those of the believers if one encounters them—since through the mystery of belief there is true brotherhood—and to serve the venerable sick elderly if they are in need of it to one’s utmost ability, is required by Religion.

TWENTY-FIFTH REMEDY

My sick brothers! If you want a most beneficial and truly pleasurable sacred cure, develop your belief! That is, through repentance and seeking forgiveness, and the five daily prayers and worship, make use of belief, that sacred cure—and of the medicine which arises from belief.

Indeed, due to love of this world and attachment to it, it is as if you possess a sick immaterial being as large as the world, like the heedless. We have proved in many parts of the Writings that belief at once heals that immaterial being of yours as large as the world, which is bruised and battered by the blows of death and separation, and saves it from the wounds and truly heals it. I cut short the discussion here so as not to weary you.

As for the medicine of belief, it shows its effect through your carrying out your religious obligations as far as is possible. Heedlessness, vice, the lusts of the soul, and illicit amusements prevent the effectiveness of that remedy. Since illness removes heedlessness, cuts the appetites, is an obstacle to illicit pleasures, take advantage of it. Make use of the sacred medicines and lights of belief through repentance and seeking forgiveness, and prayer and supplication.

May Almighty God restore you to health and make your illnesses atonement for sins. Amen. Amen. Amen.

“And they say: All praise be to God Who has guided us to this; never could we have found guidance if it had not for the guidance of God; indeed, the Messengers of our Sustainer did bring the truth.”(7:43)

“Glory be unto You! We have no knowledge save that which You have taught us; indeed, You are All-Knowing, All-Wise.”(2:32)

O God! Grant blessings to our master Muhammad, the medicine for our hearts and their remedy, the good health of our bodies and their healing, the light of our eyes and their radiance, and to his Family and Companions, and grant them peace.

A Special Approach For Starring A Supplication

A Special Approach For Starring A Supplication

A Special Approach For Starring A SupplicationAs God’s noble Messenger declares:

Whoever recites

‘All praise be to God, the Lord of the heavens and the Lord of the layers of the earth, the Lord of the Worlds: His is sublimity in the heavens and the earth, and He is the All Mighty, the All Wise. All praise be to God, the Lord of the heavens and the Lord of the layers of the earth, the Lord of the Worlds: His is grandeur in the heavens and the earth, and He is the All Mighty, the All Wise. His is the Kingdom, the Lord of the heavens, and He is the All-Mighty, the All-Wise.’

is given the reward of Moses and Aaron.

A Sample Of A Powerful Prayer

A Sample Of A Powerful Prayer

Glory be to You! We have no knowledge save that which You have taught us; indeed, You are the All-Knowing, the All Wise.

A Sample Of A Powerful PrayerO our Sustainer! Do not call us to task if we forget or fall into error. Our Sustainer! Lay not a burden on us like that which you laid on those before us; Our Sustainer! Lay not on us a burden greater than we have the strength to bear. Blot out our sins. And grant us forgiveness. Have mercy on us. You are our Protector; help us against those who stand against faith. Our Sustainer! Let not our hearts deviate now after You have guided us, but grant us mercy from Your presence; for You are the Granter of bounties without measure. Our Sustainer! You are He that will gather mankind together against a Day about which there is no doubt; for God never fails in His promise.

O God! Grant blessings and peace to the one whom You sent as a Mercy to all the worlds, and to all his Family and Companions. And have mercy of us and have mercy on his community, through Your Mercy, O the Most Merciful of the Merciful. Amen.

And the close of their prayer will be: Praise be to God, the Sustainer of All the Worlds!

Vedic Literature


Vedic Literature

Initial Prayer:

Achutaaya namaH.

Anantaaya namaH.

Govindaaya namaH.

Salutation to the Indestructible,

Salutation to the Infinite,

Salutation of the manifestor of knowledge in all.

[Go means Knowledge]

Vedic LiteratureVedic LiteratureVedic Literature

The Universal Prayer
(Gayathri)

Om Bhoorbhuvaha Swaha
Thath Savithur Varenyam
Bhargo Devasya Dheemahi
Dhiyo Yonaha Prachodayath

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Prayer by Shankaracharya
Translation & Commentary by
Vimala Thakar

(1)

Pratah smarami hridi samsphura ta twam
Satchitsukham paramahansa gatim turiyam
Yat swapna jagara sushupta mavaiti nityam
Tad brahma nishkalamaham na cha bhuta sanghaha.

In the morning as I meet the dawn, I remember that my heart contains the God, the Beloved, who has not yet been defined and described. I remember that it is He who vibrates within my heart, enables me to breathe, to talk, to listen, to move. When I am thus aware, that it is He who lives and moves within me, then the three phases of consciousness, jagrat, swapna, sushupti : wakefulness, dreaming, and profound sleep, they are transcended into turiya, the fourth dimension, which is behind the wakefulness, the dream-consciousness, and the sleep-consciousness.

When I thus remember, that the underlying current behind the wakefulness, the dream, and the sleep-consciousness is He, who lives and moves within me, then that awareness gives me sat chit sukham, the flavor of the truth, the reality, and the bliss that is the nature, the basic primary nature of life.

Sat chit sukham. When I am always thus aware of the real nature of life, then I arrive at paramahansagatim turiyam. I arrive at a state of being that has been called by the ancient wise Indians “Paramahansa”, a swan that swims through the waters of duality. That is how a sanyasi is called a paramahansa, one who lives in the renunciation of that austere awareness that it is not he who lives, as separate from the universe, but that he is only an expression of the universal..

The state of paramahansa is the state where a person is aware that he is not a conglomeration of sense organs and only the five elements, but he is the nishkala Brahman, the supreme Brahman, the divinity, who has taken the dense form of a mind and a physical body.

(2)

Pratara bhajami manaso vachasam agamyam
Vacho vibhanti nikhila yadanugrahena
Ya neti neti vachanaih nirgama avochu
Tamdeva devam ajam achyutam ahuragryam

But my mind, when I am awake, needs some work to do. It cannot remain without movement. So I give it a job. “Pratara bhajami manaso” – by the mind – “vachasam agamyam” – by the mind I move. On the frontiers of the mind I give the mind a job to explore that which lies beyond its own frontiers, that which is not accessible to the word, to the speech, as well as to the mind.

My mind asks me, “How shall I do it?” And I ask the mind to travel back, through the word, to the source of the word, the sound, and find out how the sound is born. I ask my mind to travel with the breath, to go inside: with the breath to travel. That is the only way you can find out how the sound is born, because breath and sound are woven together.

All speech and all sound is a blessing of that unspoken, unstruck sound. And unless one discovers the source from which all sound is born, one shall never set oneself free from the power of the word, that intoxicates and distorts the mind; that intoxicates the mind and sweeps it off its balance.

All the Upanishads and the Vedas have been searching for that source of sound. That source of breath. They arrived only at two words: na iti, na iti: it is “not this”, it is “not this.” So even the Vedas arrive at the point where nothing can describe and define. The source can only be experienced, the source can only be perceived and understood, but never defined and described. That is how the mind becomes silent. Not because I ask it, but while it is searching for the source of its own activity it takes a dive deep into silence, where the mind becomes the no-mind, where the knowing becomes the not-knowing.

Then I understand that silence is the only speech through which life speaks, and I feel blessed when I am in that silence.

(3)

Pratarnamami tamasah param arkavarnam
Purnam sanatana padam purushottamakhyam
Yasminnidam jagadashesham ashesamurtau
Rajjuam bhujangama iva pratibhatitam vai.

But then comes the body. It wants to do something. To worship, to admire, to adore. So I give it a job. I ask my body to bow down before the light of the earth, the sun, who dispels darkness from all the corners of the earth. And I ask my body to expose itself to that darkness dispelling sun – ask it to find out how that sun enters into the body through the doors of the eyes, and through the pores of all the veins and nerves, every pore of my being. I want my body to find out which are the avenues through which the light is received.

And when the body says, “It is the eyes through which the light enters,” I say, “Find out how the eyes can see the light. Is the light outside the eyes, or is it inside?” With the help of the mind, the body travels inward, to find out the source of the light.

And it discovers that it is not a blind person who can receive the light from outside. He who has an eye can receive the light. So that which receives the light is greater than the light seen from outside.

So I arrive at the source of light within me. And the awareness of that light dispels the illusion – the illusion and the fear that a man experiences when he see “rajo bhujangama” : when he see a rope in the darkness and he mistakes that for a snake, a cobra. I had mistaken the rope of duality for the snake and cobra of misery and sorrow. But the light dispels the darkness and I see that the duality is only a rope that cannot bind me in any way unless I bind myself with it.

That light is the purushottam, that is sanatana – eternal. Purnam – that is perfect. The perfect eternity. The God divine. That is really my nature. I had mistaken the tensions of duality to be me, but then the light dispels all the darkness, and I get rooted back into the ajam, the aychutam – that which can never be swept off its feet. Ajam – that which was never born, and can never die. I am that.

This is the prayer composed by Shankaracharya, the majestic exponent of the philosophy of non-dualism, vedanta or advait. This was sung by Vivekananda very often, and it is really on this prayer that Vivekananda’s “Song of Sanyasin” is based, where he sings, in great ecstasy:

They know not truth who dream such vacant dreams
As father, mother, children wife and friend –
The sexless Self, whose father, whose mother is he?
The self is All in All,
None else exists, and thou art that,
Sanyasin bold, say ‘Om Tat Sat Om’.

Where seekest thou that freedom?
This world nor that can give you.
Thine only is the hand,
that holds the rope that drags thee on.
Then cease lament, let go thy hold!
Sanyasin bold! Say ‘Om Tat Sat Om!’

Vimala Thakar
Hunger Mountain, MA
October, 1972