Seventh Matter: It was written in order to eliminate the fears of those who stopped serving Islam temporarily due to various reasons and who received divine blows and in order to give them moral support.

Seventh Matter

An instructive matter:

[I am compelled, through the indication of seven signs which will strengthen the morale of some of my friends who, having unfounded worries are becoming dispirited, to relate a dominical favour and an instance of Divine protection which pertain solely to service of the Qur’an, so that I may save those friends with their weak vein of temperament. Four of the seven signs show how they received blows entirely contrary to their intentions, due to their taking up hostile positions towards me not personally, but in respect of my serving the Qur’an, purely for worldly aims and while being friends. While three of the signs signify earnest and constant friends, who in order to find favour with ‘the worldly’1 and achieve some worldly aim, and so that they could feel confident, temporarily failed to show the manly stance required by friendship. However, unfortunately, each of those three friends was punished contrary to his aims.]

The first four, superficial, friends, who afterwards displayed enmity:

T h e F i r s t : Employing various means, a District Officer pleaded for a copy of the Tenth Word. I gave him one. But then, in order to be promoted, he gave up my friendship and assumed a hostile position. It took the form of his complaining to the Governor and informing on me. But as a mark of favour for service to the Qur’an, he was not promoted, but dismissed.

T h e S e c o n d : While being a friend, for the sake of his superiors and to attract the attention of ‘the worldly,’ another District Officer assumed a competitive and hostile position, and received a blow contrary to his intentions. He was sentenced to two and a half years’ imprisonment for some unexpected matter. Later he asked for prayers from a servant of the Qur’an; perhaps he will be saved, God willing, since prayers were offered for him.

T h e T h i r d : A teacher appeared to be a friend and I looked on him as one. Then he moved to Barla in order to settle and he chose to adopt an inimical attitude. But he received a blow contrary to his intentions: he was posted away from teaching to serve in the army. He was sent away from Barla.

T h e F o u r t h : There was a teacher, who because he appeared to me to be both a Hafiz and pious, I was sincerely friendly towards in the hope that he would show friendship to me by serving the Qur’an. Then, in order to find favour with the worldly, he became very cold towards us and frightened, because of one single thing an official had said. He too received a blow contrary to his intentions; he was severely reprimanded by the inspector, and dismissed.

Thus, these four men received those blows because of their animosity. However, the following three friends, since they did not display the manly attitude that serious friendship demands, received not blows, but warnings contrary to their intentions, which were sorts of admonitions.

T h e F i r s t : A respected person who was a most important, serious, and true student of mine used to continually write out the Words and disseminate them. On a confused high official coming and an incident occurring, he hid the Words he had written, as well as temporarily giving up copying them, so that he would not suffer any difficulty or hardship at the hands of ‘the worldly’ and would be safe from their evil. But as a mark of his error of temporarily ceasing his service of the Qur’an, for a year he continuously suffered the calamity of having hanging over him the sentence of paying a thousand-lira fine. Whenever he formed the intention to write further copies and returned to his former position, he was cleared in the case, till finally, praise be to Allah, he was acquitted.

With his poverty, he was saved from paying a thousand liras.

T h e S e c o n d : In order to gain the good opinion and regard of ‘the worldly’ and the new officer, my courageous, serious, and bold friend of five years’ standing unthinkingly and involuntarily did not meet with me for several months, despite being my neighbour. He did not even pay me a visit during Ramadan or the Festival. But the village question turned out contrary to his intention, and he lost his influence.

T h e T h i r d : A hafiz who used to meet with me once or twice a week, became the prayer-leader, and so as to wear the turban, abandoned me for two months. He did not even visit me during the Festival. But contrary to his intention, and contrary to usual practice, he was not allowed to wear a turban, although he had acted as prayer leader for seven or eight months.

There are numerous incidents like these, but I have not mentioned them so as not to offend the people concerned. However weak a sign each is, a strength is perceived on their being put together. One forms the opinion that -not directed towards myself, because I do not consider myself worthy of any favour- but purely in respect of serving the Qur’an, we carry out that service under dominical protection and Divine favour. My friends should think of these and not be carried away by groundless fears. Since our service is a Divine bestowal, and since it is the cause not of pride but of thanks, and since there is the decree,

But the bounty of your Sustainer rehearse and proclaim,2

I have explained these things to my friends privately, as a consequence.
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1. See, page 66, fn. 1.
2. Qur’an, 93:11

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