The testament of the lords of wealth is one thing, and the testament of the lords of states is something else. The testament of the lords of wealth goes out from the wealth and the testament of the poor men from the states. At the end of their lives, the rich give out one-third of their wealth, and the poor give out limpidness of states and truthfulness of deeds.
As much as the disobedient person is afraid for himself because of his bad deeds, the recognizer is afraid for himself ten times more because of the truthfulness of his deeds and the limpidness of his states. But there is a difference between the two: The disobedient person is afraid of the outcome and in dread of punishment, and the recognizer is afraid of the Real’s majesty and awareness.
2:180 It is written for you, when death is present for one of you and he is leaving behind some good, to make a will for parents and kinsfolk honorably, as something rightfully due from the Godward.
When the recognizers are afraid, this is called “awe,” and when the disobedient are afraid, it is called “fear.” Fear occurs because of reports, and awe occurs because of face-to-face vision. Awe is a fear that puts no veil before supplication, no blindfold over perspicacity, and no wall before hope. It is a fear that melts and kills. As long as he does not hear the call, “Fear not and grieve not!” [29:33], he will not reach ease. The owner of this fear is shown generosity, but he burns in dread of losing it. His light is increased, and the terror of alteration is thrown into him.
Abu Saʿīd Abi’l-Khayr had this state at the time of death. When he put his head on the pillow of death, they said to him, “O Shaykh, you were the kiblah of those burned, emulated by the yearners, the sun of the world. Now that you have turned your face to the Exalted Presence, give some advice to these burnt ones, say some words that will be their reminder.”
Bishr Ḥāfī had the same state at the time of going. He began to weep and wail. They said, “O Abū Naṣr, is it that you love life and dislike death?”
He said, “No, but stepping forth to God is hard.”
This is the state of a group that is overpowered by awe and confoundedness at the time of going because of the disclosure of God’s majesty and exaltedness. Until they hear the call “Fear not,” they do not reach ease.
There is another group that comes forward to the disclosure of God’s beauty and gentleness at the time of going. The lightning of closeness flashes and the fire of yearning flares up. Thus someone came before the shaykh of the Folk of Blame, ʿAbdallāh Munāzil, and said to him, “O Shaykh, I saw in a dream that you have a year of life left.”
He struck himself in the head and said, “Oh! I have to wait another year!” Then he stood up and started moving around in his finding. He was agitated and passed away from himself. He said, “Oh! When will the sun of felicity rise and the moon-faced beauty of good fortune arrive?!
Makḥūl-i Shāmī was a manly man, unique in his era, and overcome by the pain and grief of this talk. He never laughed. During his dying illness, a group came to see him and he was laughing. They said, “O Shaykh! You were always full of grief. Right now grief is even more fitting for you. Why are you laughing?”
He said, “Why shouldn’t I laugh? The sun of separation has reached the top of the wall and the day I’ve been waiting for has arrived. Right now the doors of heaven are open and the angels are clearing the way: ‘Makḥūl is coming to the Presence!’