25:23 We shall advance on what deeds they have done and make them scattered dust.
Of all the Qur’an’s verses, this is the sweetest. When He throws these tainted deeds of ours to the wind of unneediness, He will act toward us with bounty alone. What He does with His bounty will be fitting for His generosity. What is fitting for His generosity is better than what is fitting for our deeds. He has things rightfully due against us, like obedience and worship, but we in our makeup are destitute, and He has decreed our destitution. When the decreer decrees that someone be destitute, the plaintiff can have nothing against him. ‘If he has suffered hardship, that has comfort in view.
“Whenever someone is destitute, it is incumbent to give him respite so that he may acquire some capital. But, we will never acquire capital until that world, when He will pour down the treasure of His bounty on our heads. We are not wealthy through our own being—we are wealthy through His attributes. Nothing comes from us or our deeds. When an affair is opened up for us, it opens up from His bounty.”
“When He accepts us, He does not accept us because of the form of our practice. He accepts us because of the readiness that He gazed upon in His beginningless knowledge. Whatever there may be in the world follows upon that readiness. Wait until tomorrow when He makes that readiness apparent and opens the doors of the treasuries. He will give the treasury of mercy to the disobedient and the treasury of bounty to the destitute so that they may discharge what is rightfully due to Him from His treasury, for the servants cannot discharge His rightful due from what belongs to them.”
“O God, whatever I counted as a mark curtained me, and whatever I considered a basis was foolish. O God, lift up this curtain from me totally, remove from me the defect of my being, and do not leave me in the hand of striving! O God, let none of our deeds circle around us! Lift us up from our loss! O Beautiful-Doer, straighten out what You made without us! Entrust us not to what You can put up with!”
25:45 Dost thou not see thy Lord, how He stretched out the shadow? Had He willed, He would have made it still. Then We made the sun an indicator of it.
In terms of outwardness, this verse explains a miracle of Muṣṭafā, but in the meaning understood by the folk of the realities, it alludes to the special favors and redoublings of generosity he received. The explanation of the miracle is that during one of his journeys, God’s Messenger dismounted under a tree at the time of the afternoon nap. All the companions were with him, but the tree’s shadow was small. To make manifest a miracle for Muḥammad, the Exalted Lord pulled out that shadow by His power such that the whole army of Islam had a place in the tree’s shadow. In that state, the Exalted Lord sent down this verse, and this miracle became manifest.
As for the explanation of his being singled out for proximity and nearness, it is that Dost thou not see thy Lord is addressed to those who have a presence and declares the eminence of the proximate. In the station of whispered prayer Moses wanted to see the Real: “Show me, that I may gaze upon Thee!”[7:143]. The exalted majesty of the Unity pulled the bodkin of severity across the eyes of his holiness: “Thou shalt not see Me” [7:143].
Do not suppose that when someone reaches the contemplation of the exaltedness of the Possessor of Majesty, his passion and yearning will become less by one iota. In the liver of a fish, there is a heat that will not settle down by one iota even if you gather together all the oceans of the world. A heart that is a heart is at work today and it will also be at work tomorrow. Today it is in yearning itself and tomorrow it will be in tasting itself.
One of the secrets of Dost thou not see thy Lord? is that mortal man, though he is singled out for the special favors of proximity, would never reach the point where he requests the vision of the exaltedness of the Possessor of Majesty if mutual seeing had not come at the request of Beauty. The explanation of this closeness is found in the report of Muṣṭafā where he says, “When the folk of the Garden enters the Garden, they will be called, ‘O folk of the Garden, God has promised you something that He desires to fulfill for you,’” and so on to the end. This indeed is the degree of the common people among the faithful. First, they will reach their own degrees and domiciles and become familiar with their own followers, stewards, and servitors as well as the folk of their empire, and then they will reach the contemplation of Unity at the request of the Exaltedness.
There is another group who are the lords of the eye. They had become disengaged from their own attributes and reached the eye of their own innate disposition. Before they join with the ascending steps of paradise’s good fortune, the beauty of the Lordhood will block their road and unveil the
Cloak of Magnificence. He will let them witness His beauty and disclose Himself to them in His majesty before they arrive at the domiciles and degrees. That is His words, “Surely thy Lord lies in wait” [89:14].
It has also been said that Dost thou not see thy Lord, how He stretched out the shadow? means that “He stretched out the shadow of protection from sin before He sent thee as a messenger to the people. Had He willed, He would have made it still,” that is, “He would have neglected it and not done so. On the contrary, He made the sun, which rose up from thy breast, an indicator of it.”
25:46 Then We contracted it to Us with easy contracting.
This is addressed to those from whom He made the traces and intermediaries fall away.
25:48 And He it is who has sent the winds, bearing good news before His mercy. And We sent down from heaven pure water.
This is an allusion to the wind of kind favor from the direction of solicitude, which blows over the hearts of the faithful to sweep away completely the rubbish of opposition and the varieties of opacity. Then the hearts will be worthy of receiving the generous arrivals from the Real. When the scent of the repose of those winds reaches the breast of the servants, they seek for an increase in those influxes and search out the fragrance of those arrivals and that solicitude. In loving kindness and gentleness, the Exalted Lord opens four doors for them: The door of beautiful doing, the door of blessings, the door of obedience, and the door of love.
By virtue of mortal nature the servant enters the road of his own ingratitude, for Surely man is ungrateful to his Lord [100:6], so he closes the door of beautiful doing to himself. The Real sends the messenger of generosity with the key of disregard and pardon: “I will curtain your ugly-doing with My mercy, for I am the kind Master and you are the weak servant.” That is His words, “He it is Who accepts repentance from His servants and pardons the ugly deeds” [42:25].
In the same way, the Exalted Lord opens the door of blessings for the servant. The servant comes forward with ingratitude, for Surely man is a clear ingrate [43:15], so he closes that door to himself with a shortcoming in giving thanks. The Real sends the messenger of the bounty with the key of favor and says, “Though you have fallen short in giving thanks, I do not fall short in My kindness.” That is His words, “In the bounty of God, and His mercy [in that let them rejoice]” [10:58].
The third door that God opens for the servant is the door of obedience. The servant closes that door to himself with disobedience. The Real sends the messenger of forgiveness with the key of repentance: “When you commit a sin, I will forgive you, and I do not care.” That is His words, “Surely God forgives the sins altogether” [39:53].
The fourth is the door of love, which God opens for the servant with His own bounty. The servant comes forth with disloyalty and closes that door to himself with impudence and breaking the covenant. The Exalted Lord sends the messenger of clemency with the key of curtaining: “My servant, though you have dared to act with ugly deeds, I will let that go, for I am your Beloved and I am the one who says, ‘He loves them, and they love Him’ [5:54].”
25:48-49 And We sent down from heaven pure water, thereby giving life to dead earth and giving drink to many cattle and men that We created.
Naṣrābādī said, “This is the sprinkles of the waters of love that He sprinkles on the hearts of the recognizers, thereby bringing their souls to life by putting their nature to death. Then He makes their hearts a leader for the people, effusing His blessings upon them, and the blessings of their heart’s light reaches everything that has a spirit. God says, ‘thereby giving life to a dead earth and giving drink to many cattle and men that We created.’”