By Muhiyy ad-Din Ibn ‘Arabi
May the Eternal Truth wake you from the slumber of heedlessness. May He make you aware of the origin, to which we will all return and in which we will all remain for the rest of eternity.
May the Divine Seer of all and everything open your inner eye, so that you can see and remember what you have done and said all through your life in this temporal realm of experiments. Then you will know and always remember that you must account for it all and that you will be judged on the day of final judgment.
Do not leave your accounting to the Day of Reckoning. This is the place and the time to do it. See yourself., close your accounts. The only way to salvation is to go into the Beyond clean and clear of debts. Give heed to the advice of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) who said, “Make your accounting before it is made for you, weigh your sins before they are weighed for you.” Examine your life; weigh your transgressions against your good deeds. Do it while you still have time in this world of numbered breaths, while you can, before you are left alone in that dark hole in the ground.
While you are alive, your worldly self is like a collector of benefits from Allah’s bounties, which come to you from myriads of hands. What you receive is not really yours; you are like a cashier who distributes what he has received, and you are responsible for the accounting of it.
If you do not do this today, be sure that tomorrow on the burning Day of Reckoning you will scream and ask for help. No one will come to your aid. You will. hear the divine voice coming from the center of all divine orders, the voice of the Absolute Punisher who punishes the guilty, reducing them to nothing. it will be saying:
Read your book. Your own soul is sufficient as a reckoner against you this day. (Bani Isra’il, 14)
Hasn’t the Lord sent you messengers; hasn’t He shown you the right way; hasn’t He ordered you to remember Him and praise Him day and night? Hasn’t He given you time within the day and within the night to follow His orders?
If you wait until the last minute, you will receive no good from your regret. If you insist on waiting and delay the accounting of yourself, know that all doors and windows will be closed to you and you will be left outside. If this is the case, know that there is no other door, no other place in which to seek refuge. There is no place to go – for you or for anyone or anything in the creation – except Allah’s door of mercy. Go and kneel at its sill. Shed tears of repentance and beg for entrance. Try and see what is behind the curtains.
There are three dangers which may keep you from examining yourself making the accounting of your acts, and being thankful to your generous Lord. The first of these dangers is unconsciousness, heedlessness. The second is the flood of tastes and desires that gush from your ego, your lower self. The third is bad habits, in fact all habits, which make one like a machine. The one who can protect himself against these three dangers, with Allah’s help, will find salvation in both worlds.
Blessings be upon our master Muhammad and his progeny and his companions – in all tongues, in all places, and at all levels.
Whoever theorizes his religion offends against the Way of God, and peace. Heretic! Deviate toward the Law! Don’t complicate. All that is forbidden. All this learned talk is ignorance. Station and state discard it. It’s not discussion: Religion’s what my Lord said or what he said – the master guide, the envoy (and peace be his) – for he said not a word!
Al-Shaykh al-Akbar. Hadrat Ibn ‘Arabi had a shaykh who used to write down on a piece of paper everything he did or said during the day. At night he would make an accounting of that day’s words and actions. If he had done wrong, he would repent and ask forgiveness; and if he had done right, he would offer thanks to Allah. Hadrat Ibn ‘Arabi noted not only what he did and said, as his shaykh had done, but also his thoughts and feelings.
© 2016 As-Sunnah Foundation of America