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10:62 Surely God’s friends—no fear shall be upon them, neither shall they sorrow.

God’s friends are those who dive for the pearl of wisdom in the oceans of knowledge, who are the sun of desire and the resting place of the covenant of good fortune in the heaven of the innate is position, who are accepted by the Divine Presence and the oyster shell of the secrets of Lordhood, who are the title-page of the Shariah and the proof of the Haqiqah. Through them the lineage of Muṣṭafā is alive in the World of the Realities, the pathway of truthfulness is filled with the firm fixity of their feet, their outwardness is adorned with the rulings of the Shariah, their inwardness is illumined by the pearl of poverty. When the traces of the gaze of these exalted ones reach the thorn-bed of deprivation, the jasmine of the religion blooms. When the blessings of their breaths shine upon the salt-waste of misery, the ambergris of passion wafts its scent. If they gaze on a disobedient person, he becomes obedient. If they open their eyes on someone wearing a sash of unbelief, he is accepted and protected by the Exalted Threshold.

Thus it is told that once the exalted one of his time and the master of his era, Shiblī, became ill. The caliph of the time liked him, and it reached him that Shiblī was ill. There was a Christian physician, extremely skillful, so he sent him to Shiblī to cure him. The physician came and said to Shiblī, “O shaykh! If I have to make your medicine from my own skin and flesh, I will not hold it back and I will heal you.”

Shiblī said, “My medicine is less than that.”

He said, “What is it?”

He said, “Cut off that sash, and you will have cured me.”

The physician said, “It is no stipulation of chivalry that I make a claim and not carry it through. If your healing lies in my cutting off the sash, that’s an easy job.” When the physician cut off his sash, Shiblī got up from the illness.

The news of what happened reached the caliph. He became happy and said, “I thought I was sending a physician to someone ill. I did not know I was sending someone ill to a physician.”

Surely God’s friends. It has been said that the mark of the friend is that from head to foot he is nothing but veneration. His eyes have been adorned with reverence so that he does not look at anything unworthy. His tongue has been bound by courtesy so that he does not talk foolishly. His feet have been bound by the Haqiqah so that he does not walk down every street. His gullet has been bound by the Shariah so that he gives nothing access to himself but the permitted. His limbs have been bound by servanthood so that he does not bind his waist with anything but the belt of serving the Real. He is kept like this in this world, and in the next world, no fear shall be upon them, neither shall they sorrow. In this world he is adorned with service and reverence; in the afterworld, he reaches blessing and vision; in this world, he has recognition and love, in the afterworld caresses and contemplation. In this world he sees limpidness and loyalty, in the afterworld he reaches encounter and approval. This is why the Lord of the Worlds says, 10:64 For them is good news in the life of this world and the next world. They have two sorts of good news, one today and one tomorrow. Today: “Give good news to those with faith that they have a footing of truthfulness with their Lord” [10:2]. Tomorrow: “Their Lord will give them the good news of mercy from Him, approval, and the Gardens” [9:21]. Here you have boundless caresses, everlasting bliss, the happiness of friends, a satisfied King, and joyful servants: “My servants, whatever you seek, seek for nothing greater than My satisfaction. Whatever you reach, you will reach nothing better than My bounty. Whomever you choose in friendship, you will choose no one like Me. Whomever you see, you will see no one like Me. ‘This house is your house, and I am your neighbor.’”

Great are those days whose final outcome is this! Exalted is that servant who is worthy of this! Beautiful is that seed whose fruit is this! Blessed is that night whose morning is this! A house of light, everlasting happiness, and the Forgiving Patron!

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