- Lord! Heedlessly not trusting in You, but in reliance on my own power and will, I looked around in all six directions, searching for a cure for my pains. Alas, I could find no cure for them. However, it occurred to me: ‘Isn’t it enough for you that you have pains as cure?’
- In heedlessness I looked to past time on my right to find solace, but yesterday appeared to me in the form of my father’s grave and past time as the huge tomb of my forefathers. It filled me with horror rather than consolation.(*)
(*)Belief shows that huge, terrifying tomb to be a familiar and illuminated meeting place for the gathering of friends.
- Then, I looked to the future on the left. I could find no cure. Rather, tomorrow appeared to me in the form of my grave and the future as the large tomb of my contemporaries and the forthcoming generations; it gave me no feeling of familiarity but of fright.(*)
(*)Belief and the peace provided by belief show that frightful large tomb to be a feast of the Most Merciful in delightful palaces of bliss.
- Since no good appeared from the left either, I looked at the present day, and I saw it like a coffin, carrying my desperately struggling corpse.(*)
(*)Belief shows that coffin to be a place of business and a glittering guest-house.
- As I could find no cure from that direction either, I raised my head and looked at the top of the tree of my life. I saw that its single fruit was my corpse; it was looking down at me from the top.(*)
(*)Belief shows the fruit of that tree not to be a corpse, but rather that the spirit, which is to be favoured with eternal happiness in an eternal life, has left its worn-out home to travel among the stars.
- Despairing of that direction too, I lowered my head. I looked and saw that the dust of my bones underfoot had mixed with the dust of my first creation. Giving no cure, it rather increased my pains.(*)
(*)Belief shows that dust to be the door to Mercy and the curtain over the windows of the hall of Paradise.
- Turning away from that direction too, I looked behind and saw a temporary world with no foundation revolving in valleys of nothingness and darkness of non-existence. Not relieving my pains, it rather added to them the poison of more gloom and terror.(*)
(*)Belief shows that world revolving in darkness to be the missives of the Eternally-Besought-of-All and sheets of Divine inscriptions which, having completed their duties and expressed their meanings, have left their results for a new existence in place of themselves.
- Since I saw no good from that direction either, I cast my eye ahaed of me. I saw that the door of my grave stood open at the end of my way, behind which the highway leading to eternity caught my eyes from afar.(*)
(*)Since belief shows the door of the grave to be the portal to the world of light, and that way to lead to eternal happiness, it provides a salve, a cure, for my pains.
- Thus, rather than consolation and a feeling of familiarity, I received only horror and a feeling of desolation from these six directions. Further, apart from an insignificant free will, I have nothing with which to resist or oppose them.(*)
(*)Belief provides a document for relying on an Infinite Power in place of the will-power, which is like the smallest indivisible part of matter; indeed, belief itself is such a document.
- That human weapon which we call free will lacks power, its range is short, and it is inaccurate. Apart from serving as a tool in the achievement of a man’s deeds [which God creates], it cannot do anything, it cannot create.(*)
(*)Belief causes the will-power to be employed in the name of God, and makes it sufficient against everything it may face, as in the case of a soldier who, employing his insignificant power on behalf of the state, can perform deeds thousands of times greater than his own power.
- It can neither penetrate the past nor discern the future, and with regard to my pains and ambitions—concerning these, it is of no benefit.(*)
(*)Since belief gives its reins not into the hand of the animal body but to the heart and the spirit, it can penetrate the past and the future. For the sphere of life of the heart and spirit is broad.
- The arena where the will-power is active is brief present time and the passing present instant. Despite all my needs and innate weakness, destitution and helplessness, and while being in a wretched state due to the terrors and loneliness coming from the six directions, I have infinite desires and ambitions extending to eternity, and inscribed on the page of my being by the Pen of Power and embedded in my nature.
- Indeed, whatever there is in the universe, there are samples of it in my being. I am connected with all of them, I work for them. The sphere of need is as extensive as the eye reaches.
- In fact, wherever the imaginations goes, the sphere of need extends that far. Rather, whatever I do not possess, I am in need of it. What I do not possess is without limits. Whereas the extent of my power is as narrow as my arm reaches. This means that my wants and needs are of infinite quantity. Whereas my capital is as little and insignificant as an atom. So, what does that insignificant will-power signify in the face of these mountains of needs that can only be obtained with millions? They cannot be satisfied by it. Therefore, I should search for another solution.
- The solution is this: To give up one’s will-power, and never relying on one’s own power, to submit oneself to the Divine Will and seek refuge in His Power in adherence to the reality of trusting in Him. ‘O Lord! Since this is the way of salvation, I give up my free will in Your way, and abandon my ego. So that Your grace may help and support me out of compassion for my impotence and weakness, and Your Mercy may take pity on me because of my want and need and be a support for me, and open its door to me.’
- Whoever finds the boundless sea of Mercy, does not rely on his own free will any more than on a drop from the water seen in a mirage. Whoever resorts to Mercy does not resort to his will.
- Alas! We have been deceived. We have thought the worldy life is constant, and have lost it thoroughly because of this thought. Indeed, this passing life is but a sleep; it has passed like a dream. This unbounded life too flies like the wind.
- An arrogant man who relies on himself and supposes he will live for ever, will certainly die. He advances toward death speedily. The world too, which is man’s house, falls into the darkness of annihilation. Ambitions are time-bounded, but pains endure in the spirit.
- Since this is the reality, come, O my wretched soul, which is fond of living and desirous of a long life, which loves the world deeply and is afflicted with countless ambitions and pains! Awaken and come to your senses! Consider that while the firefly relies on its own dim light and always remains in the boundless darkness of the night, the honey-bee finds the sun of daytime and observes its friends, the flowers, gilded with the sunlight because it does not rely on itself. In just the same way, if you rely on yourself and your being, your own self-confidence, you will be like the firefly. Whereas if you dedicate yourself, your transient being and your body in a self-sacrificing way in the way of the Creator Who gave it to you, then you will find, like the honey-bee, an endless life of being. Dedicate it, for your being, your body, is a Divine trust to you.
Also, it is the Creator’s property; He gave it to you. So use it in His way unhesitatingly and without placing anybody under obligation; sacrifice it so that it will gain permanence. For a negation negated is an affirmation. Thus, if our non-being is negated (in favor of Being), our being finds true existence. The All-Munificent Creator buys His own property from you. In return, He gives you a high price like Paradise. Also, he looks after it well for you, and increases its value. He will return it to you in a form both perfected and made permanent. So, O my soul! Do not wait! Do this business which is profitable in five respects, and, as well as being saved from five losses, make a fivefold profit in a single transaction.
This article has been adapted from Risale- i Nur Collection.