Maulana Wahiduddin Khan I Simple Wisdom I P.38
The Prophet of Islam likened death to sleep and life to the state of wakefulness after sleep. When he awakened in the morning, he would say: “All praise and thanks are due to God who gave us life after death.” (Sahih al-Bukhari, Hadith No. 7394)
For the rest of mankind, waking and sleeping are likewise symbolic of life and death. Going to sleep is like dying and waking up in the morning is like rising from the grave. Our inevitable awakening after sleeping foreshadows with certainty how we shall arise after death to give an account of our deeds on the Day of Judgement.
Man has to pass his life in this world in such a way that every happening becomes for him a reminder of the Day of Judgement. His sleeping and rising should also serve as reminders of life after death.
The most delicate aspect of man’s life is that his existence does not come to an end after death. He has to be reborn in another world. The present world is the world of action, while the world to come will be one in which he reaps his reward. That will be the beginning of a new and eternal life—either eternal heaven or eternal hell.
Man is reminded daily of this most important reality when he goes to sleep and when he rises from sleep. In this way, actions of this world come to remind man of the hereafter.
The Prophet of Islam used to lead a very simple life and laid great stress on believers doing likewise. Once he said, “O people, don’t you hear me, O people, don’t you hear me, O people, don’t you hear me, ‘Simplicity is undoubtedly a part of faith.’ ‘Simplicity is undoubtedly a part of faith.’”(Sunan Abi Dawud, Hadith No. 4161)
When man has discovered the greatness of God, his own existence appears quite insignificant in comparison. This feeling makes him a truly modest person. His whole being is coloured in the hue of servitude. His manner ceases to be aggressive and his voice becomes gentle. Even his gait expresses his modesty. His whole attitude comes to reflect a new seriousness.
All this inevitably results in his preferring simplicity in everything, in food, drink, living arrangements, and so on. He avoids luxuries, pomp, and show. His soul finds pleasure and contentment in leading a life of simplicity instead of indulgence.
True faith leads man away from artificial things to nature, where simplicity is the rule. He develops a liking for a simple way of life, which is more natural. This naturalness behoves the believer. Naturalness is in accordance with modesty and humility; they are great virtues in the eyes of God.