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7:55 Supplicate your Lord in pleading and secret.

Muṣṭafā said, “Supplication is worship.” Supplication is calling or asking. If it is calling, it is the same as laudation, and if it is asking, it is fitting for the servant. Both are worship and the means to salvation. Yaḥyā Muʿādh said, “Worshiping God is a storehouse, the key to the storehouse is supplication, and the teeth of the key are lawful morsels.”

The precondition of supplication is pleading, weeping, and throwing oneself in lowliness on the Exalted Threshold. This is why He says, “in pleading and secret.” It has come in a report that Adam mourned and pleaded over that slip of his for one hundred years. Finally, Gabriel said, “Lord God, You Yourself see Adam’s pleading, You hear his weeping. Is there any way for You to accept his apology and place a balm on his wound?”

The command came, “O Gabriel! Leave Adam to Me, for if I had not known this pleading and weeping from him, I would not have decreed the slip for him. Indeed I decreed the slip for him because I knew that when he became helpless, he would loosen the tongue of supplication and pleading, and I love that the servant should lament and weep for Me. ‘The sinner’s sobs are more beloved to Me than the glorifier’s murmur.’”The like of this verse is “Your Lord has said, ‘Supplicate Me; I will respond to you’ [40:60]. He says, “Call on Me so that I may respond to you; know Me, so that I may forgive you; ask from Me, so that I may give to you.”

In another place, He says, “He who responds to the distressed when he supplicates Him [27:62]. That hapless and helpless man, having lost the capacity to bear the trial—who will answer his call if not I? Who will hear his supplication if not I? Who will come to the aid of his helplessness if not I?” The distressed is someone who has no handhold and gazes on his own days given to the wind. He sees that his hands are empty of all the means of approach and acts of obedience. The supplication of such a person is like an arrow that goes straight to the target.

Among the preconditions for supplication, one is lawful morsels. Muṣṭafā said, “Keep your food goodly and your supplication will be responded to.” The second is wakefulness and sharp-wittedness with a heart in the presence and far from heedlessness. Muṣṭafā said, “God does not respond to the supplication of an inattentive heart.” The third is fear and want, for the Exalted Lord says, “Supplicate Him in fear and want” [7:56]. This fear and want, meaning fear and hope, and that pleading and secrecy, meaning self-purification and truthfulness, are like four streams in the opened heart. As long as these four streams are flowing and bright, the heart flourishes, faith is in place, and supplications are answered. But, if these four streams are held back from the heart and their springs dry up, the heart becomes dead, tears are held back from the eyes, a remembrance from the tongue, and love from the heart. Obedience does not grow up from him, and faith does not come.

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