The heart speaks naught but the language of love,
The soul seeks nothing but the way to your love,
Your love made my desert heart like a salt-marsh,
Such that affection for no one else can ever grow there.
The most pleasurable of all things for the Noble Prophet of Islam (peace and blessings be upon him and his family) was his relationship with the Worshipped and private and intimate talks with God. He would never grow tired of his servitude towards God. Sometimes he would experience states in his prayer that only God’s intimate friends are worthy of experiencing. Without a doubt, expressing servitude towards God as well as these private and intimate talks bring about a particular form of enthusiasm that causes all other than God to be left in the valley of the forgotten. The field of man’s heart is transformed into a salt marsh where the love of other than God can never grow.
It is by means of serving and worshipping God that a person can experience peace and serenity within himself. He finds himself and discovers his place in the order of existence. The Great Prophet of Islam (peace and blessings be upon him and his family) would maintain this state of worship in the most complete manner. The gnostic form of worship that he experienced could not be experienced by many.
‘Aishah (the Prophet’s wife) said:
“The Messenger of God would be speaking to us and we would be speaking to him, until the time for prayer would set in, and then it was as if he did not know us and we did not know him.”1
The Commander of the Faithful, ‘Ali (peace be upon him) said,
“The Messenger of God (peace and blessings be upon him and his family) would never procrastinate his prayer for dinner or anything else. When the time for prayer arrived, it was as if he did not know his family and friends.” 2
Imam Sajjad has clarified the Prophet’s desire and enthusiasm for worship as such,
“The Messenger of God (peace and blessings be upon him and his family) would stand on the tips of his toes, then God revealed the following verse, ‘Ta Ha, We have not revealed the Qur’an to you for you to experience great discomfort’3 (Quran 20:1).”
It has also been narrated that: One night, the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him and his family) was in the home of one of his wives (Umm Salamah). After a little of the night had passed, Umm Salamah saw that the Messenger of God was not in bed. She got up and went looking for him. All of a sudden she noticed that he was standing next to the room with his hands raised, his eyes full of tears and he was saying the following; “O God, don’t take away the good you have given me. O God, don’t please my enemies and those who are jealous of me. O God, don’t allow their evil from which you saved me to come back. O God, don’t leave me to myself, even for one moment.”
At this point, Umm Salamah began crying. The Prophet said, “Why are you crying, Umm Salamah?”
She said, “May my father and mother be your sacrifice, why shouldn’t I cry? Even though you have such a high station and the fact that God has forgiven your past and future sins, you talk to God in this way (it is more appropriate for us to fear God and to cry in His presence).”
The Prophet said, “How can I be safe when God left Prophet Jonas (peace be upon him) to himself for only a moment when that which afflicted him took place.”4
As one can see, The Messenger of God (peace and blessings be upon him and his family) perpetually saw himself in the presence of God and he would remember God with his heart and tongue and in this way, he caused the water of monotheism to flow across the land of his spirit, to the point where the tree of proximity to God was rooted in his heart and mixed with his being.
- 1.Bihar al-Anwar, vol. 84, p. 257.
- 2.Majmu’ah Warram, vol. 2, p. 78.
- 3.Bihar al-Anwar, vol. 16, p. 264.
- 4.Bihar al-Anwar, vol. 6, p. 218.
(This is a brief extract from The Perfect Role Model: The Prophet of Islam by Himmat Suhrab Pur. The translation of which can be found here)