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ٱعْلَمُوۤاْ أَنَّمَا ٱلْحَيَٰوةُ ٱلدُّنْيَا لَعِبٌ وَلَهْوٌ وَزِينَةٌ وَتَفَاخُرٌ بَيْنَكُمْ وَتَكَاثُرٌ فِي ٱلأَمْوَٰلِ وَٱلأَوْلَٰدِ كَمَثَلِ غَيْثٍ أَعْجَبَ ٱلْكُفَّارَ نَبَاتُهُ ثُمَّ يَهِيجُ فَتَرَٰهُ مُصْفَرّاً ثُمَّ يَكُونُ حُطَٰماً وَفِي ٱلآخِرَةِ عَذَابٌ شَدِيدٌ وَمَغْفِرَةٌ مِّنَ ٱللَّهِ وَرِضْوَٰنٌ وَمَا ٱلْحَيَٰوةُ ٱلدُّنْيَآ إِلاَّ مَتَٰعُ ٱلْغُرُورِ
-Al-Hadîd ( الحديد )

Tafsir al-Tustari

Know that the life of this world is merely play and diversion…He said:The world (dunyā) is a sleeping soul (nafs nāʾima), and the Hereafter is a soul awake (nafs yaqẓāna).It was asked, ‘What is the way to salvation from it [the life of this world]?’ He replied:The root of this [salvation] is knowledge (ʿilm) and its fruit is opposing one’s desire (hawā) by avoiding what is forbidden (manāhī). Then it is the soul’s endurance (mukābadat al-nafs) in fulfilling the divine commandments, [in a state of] purity (ṭahāra) from every kind of defilement(adnās). This will bring about ease in worship, and thereafter he will abide in the stations of the worshippers. Then God will let him experience that which His friends (awliyāʾ) and elect (aṣfiyāʾ) experienced, which is the rank of tasting (madhāq). He [Abū Bakr al-Sijzī] said, ‘He [Sahl] then mentioned to us the following’:One day Abraham , Friend of the Lord of Mercy, was in the desert on an extremely hot day, and he was afflicted with great thirst. He saw an Abyssinian man tending some camels, so he asked: ‘Do you have any water?’ He replied, ‘O Abraham, what do you prefer: water or milk?’ He said: ‘Water.’He [Sahl] continued:He then struck a rock with his foot upon which water gushed forth. Abraham was amazed, so God said to Abraham, through inspiration, ‘If that Abyssinian man had asked Me to remove the heavens and earth from existence I would have removed them.’ So he [Abraham] asked, ‘Why is that, O Lord?’ He replied, ‘It is because he does not desire anything from the world or the Hereafter except Me.’ ʿĀmir b. ʿAbd al-Qays said,I have found the world to comprise four main properties (khiṣāl). As for two of these, namely, the [desire for] women and the [desire] to amass wealth, my soul (nafs) has renounced them willingly. However, as for the other two, there is no doing without them, though I try to keep them away from me as much as I can; these are sleep and food. His words, Exalted is He:

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