Regarding the vicissitudes of time
(The mischiefs that are to occur and the absence of lawful ways of
May my father and my mother
be sacrificed for those few whose names are well-known in the sky and not
known on the earth. Beware, you should expect what is to befall you such
as adversity in your affairs, severance of relations and the rising up of
This will happen when the
blow of a sword will be easier for a believer than to secure one Dirham
lawfully. This will happen
when the reward of the beggar is more
than that of the giver.
This will be when you are
intoxicated, not by drinking, but with wealth and plenty, you are swearing
without compulsion and are speaking lies without compulsion. This will be
when troubles hurt you as the saddle hurts the hump of the camel.
How long will these
tribulations be and how distant the hope (for deliverance from them)?
O' people, throw away the
reins of the horses who carry on their backs the weight of your hands
(i.e. sins), do not cut away from your chief (Imam) otherwise you will
blame yourself for your own doings. Do not jump in the fire which is in
flames in front of you; keep away from its courses and leave the middle
way for it. Because, by my life, the believer will die in its flames, and
others will remain safe in it.
I am among you like a lamp
in the darkness. Whoever enters by it will be lit from it. So listen O'
men, preserve it and remain attentive with the ears of your hearts so that
you may understand.
In that period the reward of the beggar who takes will be higher than that
of the giver because the ways of earning livelihood of the rich will be
unlawful, and whatever he will donate of it, its purpose will be showing
himself, hypocrisy and seeking fame, for which he will not be entitled to
any reward, while the poor who take it by force of their poverty and
helplessness, and to spend it in the right manner, will deserve more
reward and recompense.
The commentator, Ibn
Abi'l-Hadid has written another meaning of it also, namely if the beggar
does not take the wealth from the rich and it remains with him he will
spend it on unlawful matters and enjoyments, and since his taking it from
him prevents him from using it in unlawful manner; therefore, for this
prevention of evil, the beggar will deserve more reward and recompense.
(Sharh Nahj al-balaghah, vol. 13, p. 97)