repents, each hour will become the equivalent of twenty hours’ worship, and prison will become like a rest-house for him, and because of his friends there who regard him with affection, a place of love, training, and education. He will probably be happier staying in prison than being free, for outside he is confused and subject to the assaults of sins from all sides. He may receive a complete education from prison. On being released, it will not be as a murderer or thirsting for revenge, but as someone penitent, proven by trial, well-behaved, and beneficial for his nation. In fact, the Denizli prisoners became so extraordinarily well-behaved after studying the Risale-i Nur for only a short time that some of those concerned said: “Studying the Risale-i Nur for fifteen weeks is more effective at reforming them than putting them in prison for fifteen years.”
Since death does not die, and the appointed hour is unknown, it may come at any time; and since the grave cannot be closed, and troop after troop enter it and are lost; and since it has been shown through the truths of the Qur’an that for those who believe death is transformed into the discharge papers releasing them from eternal annihilation, while for the corrupt and the dissolute it is disappearing for ever into eternal annihilation, and is unending separation from their loved ones and all beings, most certainly and with no doubt at all, the most fortunate person is he who with patience and thanks fully benefits from his time in prison, and studying the Risale-i Nur works to serve the Qur’an and his belief on the straight path.
O man who is addicted to enjoyment and pleasure! I am seventy-five years old, and I know with utter certainty from thousands of experiences, proofs, and events that true enjoyment, pain-free pleasure, grief-free joy, and life’s happiness are only to be found in belief and in the sphere of the truths of faith. While a single worldly pleasure yields numerous pains; as though dealing ten slaps for a single grape, it drives away all life’s pleasure.
O you unfortunates who are experiencing the misfortune of prison! Since your world is weeping and your life is bitter, strive so that your hereafter will not also weep, and your eternal life will smile and be sweet! Benefit from prison! Just as sometimes under severe conditions in the face of the enemy, an hour’s watch may be equivalent to a year’s worship, so in the severe conditions you are experiencing, the hardship of each hour spent as worship becomes the equivalent of many hours, it transforms that hardship into mercy.