Tooba for the one who desires to be just to himself for the sake of His Lord and recognises his ignorance, the great deficiency in his actions and his defects. Who recognises his transgression of His rights and his oppression in his daily affairs. Hence if He takes him to account for his sins the [servant] sees this to be from His Justice and if He does not take him to account then he sees this to be from His Generosity. If he performs a good action then he sees that it arose due to His Blessing and His Gift. Then if He accepts it the servant sees this as a second blessing and gift, if however He rejects [the action] then it is because the likes of this action does not deserve to be directed to Him. If he commits an evil deed then he sees [that it arose] due to his relinquishing Him, his forsaking Him and His withdrawing His protection from him. This occurred due to His justice and therefore he recognises through this his dire need of His Lord and his oppression of himself, if He forgives him then it is purely due to His Beneficence, Kindness and Generosity.
The point of the discussion and the secret behind it is that the servant does not see his Lord except as One continuously bestowing goodness and he does not see himself except as one who is sinful, excessive or deficient. Therefore he sees every [good] that becomes easy for him to perform to be as a result of His Lords' Generosity and Beneficence. He sees everything that he dislikes being a result of his sins and His Lords' justice.
When the homes of the beloved are destroyed the lovers say: water [and aid] for those affected! Likewise when the years come to the lover when he is beneath the soil, it is then that he will remember the excellence of his obeying Him in the world, Allaah's Love of him, His continual renewing of His Mercy to him and His giving to drink [nourishing] those who were residing in those worn out bodies.
The Reality of Tawheed
by Imâm Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah
Translated by Abu Rumaysah
The Relief of the Heart and Body Lies in the Obedience of Allah
In this lies a great secret from the secrets of Tawheed. This is that the heart cannot become firm, it cannot find satisfaction and it cannot find tranquillity except by reaching out to Him. Everything that is loved and desired besides Him then it must be desired for other than His sake. The One Who is desired, the One Who is beloved in and of Himself, with Whom all matters find their final goal is only one. It is impossible that the final goal be to two destinations just as it is impossible that the beginning of the creation be from two sources.
So the one whose love, desire, will and obedience ends at other than Him then it will be rendered null and void, it will disappear and split off from him no matter how great his need be of it. However the one whose love, desire, will, obedience, awe and reverential fear ends at Him, far removed is He from imperfection, will find himself winning His favours, bliss and rapture, magnificence and splendour, and felicity for eternity.
The servant continuously finds himself altering between the laws of commandments and the laws of decree. Therefore he is perpetually in need of aid to fulfil the commandments and in need of kindness and leniency at the onset of the calamity. It is the extent to which he establishes the obligations that determine how much kindness the servant will receive at the onset of the calamity. Therefore if he completes his obligations both inwardly and outwardly then he will attain kindness and leniency both inwardly and outwardly. If, however, he merely establishes the outward form [of the commandments] without establishing their reality [inwardly] then he will receive an outward kindness and his portion of inward kindness will [greatly] diminish.
So if it is asked: what is this inward kindness?
[I say in reply:] It is what the heart attains of tranquillity and satisfaction at the onset of the calamity and the removal of unrest, confusion and despair. Therefore the servant surrenders and submits himself before his Lord and Master and he emerges in a state of complete rest and tranquillity - looking on at Him with his heart, and his soul at peace. His witnessing His Kindness has distracted him from the severity of the situation. His knowledge of Allaah's excellent choice and decision for him diverts him from feeling the calamity just as does his knowledge that he is nothing but a mere servant upon whom the decrees of his Master take effect, and he can either be pleased with them or angry with them. So if he is pleased then he will attain Pleasure and if he is displeased then his portion is nothing save Displeasure. Therefore this inward kindness is the fruit of this inward action [of being pleased with the decree of Allaah], it increases with its increase and decreases with its decrease.