Saturday, June 1, 2019

“O ye people

you were not created in negligence, nor have you been left on your own. You have a destination where God, Most High, will judge among you and sort you out; ruined indeed and damned is the one whom God, Most High, puts outside His Mercy, ‘which envelops all things’, and outside His Heaven, ‘the breadth of which is that of the heavens and the earth’. But safety will be his morrow who fears and reveres God; who barters what is small for what is vast, what is ephemeral for what is eternal, what brings suffering for what brings joy. Do you not see that you are in the ranks of that which perishes and that you will be replaced hereafter by those who shall remain behind? Do you not see that each day you take to the grave a traveller journeying towards God, his term fulfilled, his future hopes cut short, you put him in a place burrowed in the earth, neither smooth nor cushioned—stripped of means, friends departed and a reckoning ahead?’

[From the sermons of ‘Umar b. ‘Abd al-‘Aziz]

Quoted in Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyya’s The Invocation of God, Translated by Michael Abdurrahman Fitzgerald and Moulay Youssef Slitine. (Cambridge: The Islamic Texts Society, 2000 [2004]), pp. 19-20. See footnote 45 for citations from tafsirs where this is quoted. 

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