şehir, the Risale-i Nur lost only one and a half of its students. Through the efforts of the heroes of Isparta and its surroundings, in their place ten thousand were added, just the opposite to the shaykh. God willing, in this ordeal too, through the efforts of the heroes of both the east and the west, few will be lost, and ten will come in place of any one that goes.
* * *
One time, someone who was not a Muslim found a way of succeeding to the leadership of a sufi order and began to give guidance. The disciples under his training began to advance, then one of them saw through a revelation that their guide had suffered a serious decline. With his insight, the guide told his disciple: “So you have understood.” But the disciple said: “Since it was with your guidance that I rose to this station, I shall follow you even closer from now on.” He beseeched Almighty God and saved his unhappy shaykh, who all of a sudden advanced, and outflanking all his disciples, again became their true guide. This means that sometimes a disciple becomes the shaykh’s shaykh. But the true skill is that when one sees his brother in a bad situation, he does not abandon him, but strengthens their brotherhood and tries to reform him. This is the mark of the loyal and faithful. Because the dissemblers want to destroy the solidarity of brothers in such situations and spoil their good opinions of each other, they say: “See, those you think so highly of are common, ordinary people.” Anyway, we have suffered much in this calamity, but since it is a matter concerning the whole world of Islam, it is very cheap and of high value. Due to their being politics of religion or for other reasons, similar events have not been of concern for the whole Islamic world.
* * *
Since the strange signature at the beginning of the printed edition of the Old Said’s work Lemeât coincides with little change with my present circumstances and exactly with my seventy-second year, I have included it here. If you consider it suitable, you can add it to the end of the defences in place of a signature, and to the Fruits and the short letters. That strange signature consists of the following three and a half lines:
My demolished grave in which are heaped up sixty-nine dead Said’s with his sins and sorrows.
The seventieth is a gravestone to a grave; altogether they weep at Islam’s decline.