A letter to Mu'awiya. | Nahj Al Balagha Letters

A letter to Mu'awiya.

There is still time left for you to see the realities which are bright enough to be see and derive the benefit from the knowledge thus gained. But you are following in your ancestors' footsteps in trying to prove falsehood to be true, in seducing people with lies and false hopes, in claiming a thing far above your merits and capacities and in grasping things which religion prohibits to you.

This is so because you want to escape from truth, from religion and from Allah. And you have denied and refused to accept realities which, if you realize, are more important to you than your own flesh and blood. These are the realities about which you have been repeatedly told and often been made to understand.

Now tell me, if you disown truth and religion what will remain with you but plain and evident apostasy and utter reprobation, and if you refuse to accept the truth as told by Allah and the Holy Prophet (s) what you will believe in is but foolish, superstitious and irrational fears. Therefore, do not give away to doubts (about the truth which Islam has proclaimed) and do not be mislead by schism into blind alleys. Beware that sinful temptation has drawn heavy curtains and the darkness they create in blinding you to your reason.

I received your letter. I do not know what to think about it. To me it appears to be an idiotic confusion of irrelevant ideas. Reconciliation, treaty and peace are not the things which you want to offer or to accept. What your letter contains is only disjointed words and meaningless phrases. It has been worded by somebody who has neither knowledge nor reasoning, who can neither offer anything nor invite an offer.

By writing such an idiotic letter you have placed yourself in the position of a man who has been stuck in a sack or one who is groping his way in darkness.

It will be a great misfortune for Muslims if you become their despotic ruler after me, be it the whole Islamic State or any small part of it. May Allah protect them in such a calamity. Allah forbids that I appoint you a governor of any province or willingly allow you to control destinies of Muslims of any part of the State.

Be reasonable and act rationally because if you miss this chance you will find yourself in a very serious situation when faithful Muslims attack you and what can be accepted of you today will not then be acceptable.

A letter to Abdullah bin Abbas. Ibn Abbas said that except the advice and sayings of the Holy Prophet (s) no other advice benefited him more than this. A variation of this letter has appeared earlier on – see Letter 22.

Sometimes a man feels very happy for getting a thing which was actually destined for him and feels sorry for not getting a thing which he was not destined to get. Therefore, you should not feel happy if your desires are fulfilled and should not feel sorry for deprivations.

(Leave everything to the Will of Allah). You should not consider the achievements of the pleasures of life or opportunities of revenge for wrongs done to you as the main blessings bestowed upon you but you must feel happy for good deeds that you have provided for the Hereafter.

You must feel sorry for the wealth that you have left without spending it on good causes and the opportunities you have lost of doing noble and pious deeds. Nothing should worry you but the idea of death and the life after death.