THE BALANCE BETWEEN THE PHYSICAL AND THE SPIRITUAL
The true life is the
one lived at the spiritual level. Those whose hearts are alive,
conquering the past and the future, cannot be contained by
time. Such people are never excessively distressed by sorrows
of the past or anxieties of the future. Those who cannot experience
full existence in their hearts, and thus lead banal, shallow
lives, are always gloomy and inclined to hopelessness. They
consider the past a horrifying grave, and the future an endless
well. It is torment if they die, and it is torment if they
Establishing a sound relationship with a long, great past
and a long, better future depends on your having a proper
understanding of your heart’s and soul’s vitality. The fortunate
ones live at this level and fully understand this life. They
see the past as our ancestors’ great tents and thrones, the
future as roads leading toward the gardens of Paradise, and,
while sipping inspiration from their inner conscience as if
from the fountain of Kawthar1,
they pass on from the guesthouse of this world. But the unfortunate
ones, those who cannot reach such level of understanding and
endeavor, lead lives that are worse than death, and their
deaths are a hell of darkness upon darkness.
There is a mutually supportive and perfective relation between
one’s actions and inner life. We may call this relation a
“virtuous circle.” Attitudes like determination, perseverance,
and resolve illuminate one’s inner conscience, and the brightness
of this inner conscience strengthens one’s will-power and
resolve, stimulating him or her to ever-higher horizons.
Those fortunate ones, whose actions reflect the obedience
of their spirits, will always seek to please the Creator and
humanity, and will continue to acquire praiseworthy virtues.
pointer will always point to the same mihrab3,
and their progress indicator will always show the same route.
Although some straying may occur every once in a while, a
truly sincere remorse and a heartfelt penitence will melt
away the consciousness of sin from their hearts and souls.
After this, they will resume their roads, often with renewed
Those fortunate ones who fulfill their duties meticulously
and thoroughly, who attend with care to every little detail,
enjoy orderliness, harmony, and devotion to duty in their
outer worlds. At the same time, they increase the pure light
of their inner worlds and, on the wings of their prayers,
attain a few times each day the rank of angels.
This understanding and balance in human hearts, that is, the
inward experience and meticulous practice of religion alongside
a love and yearning for eternity, over time was replaced by
dull formalism and mysticism that made us lazy. Since that
time, those two ominous groups have regarded their own inspirations,
which are no more than the light of a firefly, as equal to
the bright and varied brilliance of Revelation. They block
our way to new horizons of thought and darken the horizons
of our aspirations by spraying fumes and dust onto our enlightened
By way of summing up, we may characterize soldiers of truth
Soldiers of truth have a toughened structure, like tempered
steel, that can withstand all pressures and assaults. Their
intellect can combine, like an expert chemist, the Divine
Word and all current knowledge in a pot and thereby obtain
new syntheses. Their spirits have been perfected in the same
crucible that perfected such spiritual masters as Mawlana
Rumi and Shaykh Jilani. They are so modest that they see themselves
as just ordinary people among others. Finally, their altruism
has reached such a level that they can forget their own needs
and desires for the sake of others’ happiness.
One of the rivers in Paradise.
The direction in which a Muslim turns to when praying. The
individual is its beginning point, and the Ka‘ba, located
in Makka, is its end point.
An architectural feature found in every mosque to indicate
the direction Muslims must turn to when praying.