weak self with the difficulties and troubles of a cave. Only, in Barla there were two or three distrustful people, and I suffered torments because of their groundless fears. It was as though those friends of mine were thinking of my comfort, but because of their suspicions, they harmed both my heart and our service of the Qur’an.
Moreover, although the worldly gave the document in question to all the exiles, and released the criminals from prison and offered them an amnesty, they wrongfully did not give it to me. However, in order to further employ me in the service of the Qur’an and make me write to a greater extent the lights of the Qur’an called the Words, my Compassionate Sustainer left me untroubled in this exile and transformed it into a great instance of compassion.
In addition, although the worldly left all the influential, powerful leaders and shaikhs who could interfere in their world in the towns and cities and permitted them to meet with their relatives and everyone, they unjustly isolated me and sent me to a village. With one or two exceptions they allowed none of my relatives and fellow-countrymen to visit me. But my All-Compassionate Creator transformed that isolation into a vast mercy for me, for it left my mind clear and I was able to receive the effulgence of the All-Wise Qur’an as it is, free of malice and ill-will.
Also, the worldly deemed excessive the two commonplace letters I wrote in two years at the beginning of my exile. And now even, they are displeased at one or two people visiting me purely for the sake of the hereafter once every week or two or once a month; and they have harassed me because of this. But my Compassionate Sustainer and All-Wise Creator transformed their tyranny into mercy, for He transformed it into a desirable solitude and acceptable retreat for me during these Three Months,1 which may gain for a person ninety years of spiritual (manevî) life. All thanks be to God for all situations, my situation and comfort are thus.
YOUR SECOND QUESTION
Why don’t you apply for your release papers?
T h e A n s w e r : I have been sentenced by divine determining (kader) in this matter, not by the worldly, so I apply to it. Whenever it gives permission, whenever it cuts off my sustenance here, then I shall go. The reality of this is as follows: there are two causes of everything that befalls one, one apparent and the other, real. The worldly are the apparent cause; they brought me here. As for divine determining, that was the true cause; it sen
Şuhûr-u selâse: the holy months of Rajab, Sha‘ban, and Ramadan. (Tr.)