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Posts Tagged ‘Ibn al-Jawzee’

Wooden boardwalk across water

Muhammad ibn Ja’far related: I heard Muhammad ibn Sabīh, saying: “I was informed  that when a person is placed in his grave [and he has sinned], he is encountered by what he detests therein; the dead from the neighbouring graves say to him: ‘O you whose brothers and neighbours passed away, while you were left behind in the world! Did you not learn a lesson from us [when we died but you stayed alive]? Have you not thought about the notion of us preceding you in death? Did you not notice that our deeds ended by our death, yet you were still given time [i.e. to perform more deeds]? So why did you not take advantage of what we have neglected?’ Then the earth calls him saying: ‘O you who was befooled with the appearance of this worldly life! Why did you not learn a lesson from those who were befooled with this wordly life then they were removed and buried underneath?'” [1]

Footnotes

  1.  cf. Ibn Rajab in Ahwāl al-Qabur (p.26) and Ihyā‘ ‘Ulum al-Dīn (4/482)
  • Transcribed from: Disturber of Hearts; Kitab al-Mugliq | Ibn al-Jawzī
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When a person anticipates what his Hawā is calling him to prior to attaining it, he should then reflect on his state after his satisfaction has passed, he should compare this between his satisfaction and his sin, for that is when he will know that he has lost double of what he has gained.

A poet said regarding this:

How much satisfaction that provoked happiness

Ended up revealing sadness and sorrow

How many desires ripped from their participants

The garment of religion and virtue

Know that when a human acts in accordance to his Hawā, he will find himself in disgrace and humiliation, even if this Hawā does not harm him, that is because he feels subdued by his Hawā, but when he overcomes his Hawā, he will find in himself honor and pride as he will feel triumphant and victorious. For this reason, when people see an ascetic they become amazed by him, and they would kiss his hand [to show respect] because they perceive him as a person who is strong enough to leave what they were weak in the face of and that is disobeying Hawā.  

  • Transcribed from: Disciplining the Soul; Tibb al-Ruhāni | Ibn al-Jawzi

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Ibn al-Jawzī authored the following as an advice to his son, Abu’l-Qasim Badr al-Dīn ‘Alī al-Nasikh.1 

You should know, my son, may Allāh guide you to what is right, that man has been distinguished by intellect only so that he would act according to it. Bring it to the fore, use it in contemplation and spend time alone with yourself. You will conclude that you are a created being who has responsibilities and obligations and that the two angels are counting your every word and glance. Every breath is a step closer to death. The time we spend in this world is short, the time we are held in our graves is long, and the punishment for following our base desires is calamitous.

Where is the delight of yesterday? It has departed leaving only regret in its wake. Where is the soul’s desire? How many has it brought low, how many has it caused to slip and falter? People have only attained happiness by going against their lusts and desires. People have only become wretched by giving preference to the life of this world. Learn from the lives of kings and ascetics: where is the delights of the kings and where is the weariness of the ascetics? The only thing left is the abundant reward and beautiful mention for the pious, and the malicious words and calamitous punishment for the disobedient. It is as if those who starved never starved and those who ate to their fill never did so. Laziness in virtuous deeds is an evil companion indeed, and love of comfort causes regret greater than any enjoyment. So take heed and tire yourself for your self.

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