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* تفسير Tafsir al-Tustari

{ الۤـمۤ }

Alif Lām Mīm! Do people suppose they will be left to say, ‘We believe,’ without being put to the test?He said:That is, without their being beset by affliction (balāʾ). Truly affliction is a doorway between the people of gnosis (ahl al-maʿrifa) and God, Mighty and Majestic is He. It has been related that the angels say, ‘O Lord! Your disbelieving servant has had [the goods of] this world made available to him in abundance, while affliction has been kept away from him.’ Then He says to the angels, ‘Reveal his [the unbelieving servant’s] punishment to them [the other angels?].’ When they see it they say, ‘What he gets from the world is not a blessing for him.’ Then they say, ‘O Lord! You keep the world away from Your believing servant and expose him to affliction!’ And He says to the angels, ‘Reveal to the others his [the believing servant’s] reward.’ When they see his reward they say, ‘Whatever he suffers in this world will not harm him.’ He [Tustarī] said:Let your prayer (ṣalāt) be forbearance (ṣabr) in the face of suffering (baʾsāʾ), your fasting (ṣawm) be to observe silence (ṣamt), and your charity (ṣadaqa) be to refrain from doing harm [to anybody] (kaff al-adhā). Furthermore, forbearance in [times of] well-being (ʿāfiya) is more difficult than forbearance in [times of] affliction (balāʾ). This saying is also related from him:Seeking safety (salāma) is not exposing yourself to affliction.His words:

Tafsīr al-Tustarī, trans. Annabel Keeler and Ali Keeler
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