Everything has two ends and a middle

Abu Nu’aym, in his famous book Hilyah al-Awliyaa’, recorded the following inspirational narration:

 حدثنا أبي ثنا اسحاق بن ابراهيم ثنا محمد بن سهل ثنا اسماعيل بن عبدالكريم حدثني عبدالصمد بن معقل عن وهب بن منبه قال

…Wahb ibn Munabbiah said:

قال عالم لمن فوقه في العلم كم أبني من البناء قال يكفيك ما يسترك من الشمس ويكنك من الغيث قال كم آكل من الطعام قال فوق الجوع ودون الشبع قال كم ألبس من الثياب قال لباس المسيح عليه السلام قال كم أضحك قال ما يسفر وجهك ولا يسمع صوتك قال كم أبكي قال لا تمل أن تبكي من خشية الله قال كم أخفي من العمل قال حتى يظن الناس أنك لم تعمل حسنة قال كم أعلن من العمل قال ما يأتم بك الحريص ولا تؤتى أو قال ولا يقبل عليك كلام الناس

A scholar once asked another greater than him in knowledge, “How much should I build?” He replied, “As much as shelters you from the sun and the rain.” He asked, “How much food should I eat?” He replied, “More than what keeps you hungry and less than what makes you full.” He asked, “How much should I wear?” He replied, “As the Messiah (Jesus) did.” He asked, “How much should I laugh?” He replied, “As much as appears on your face but does not make audible your voice.” He asked, “How much should I cry?” He replied, “Never tire from crying out of the fear of Allah.” He asked, “How much should I hide my deeds?” He replied, “Until people think you had not done a good deed.” He asked, “How much should I make public my deeds?” He replied, “As much as will let the keen follow your example but not have the people talk about you.”

قال وسمعت راهبا يقول إن لكل شيء طرفين ووسطا فاذا أمسكت بأحد الطرفين مال الآخر واذا أمسكت بالوسط اعتدل الطرفان ثم قال عليكم بالأوسط من الأشياء

He said: I once heard a monk say: “Everything has two ends and a middle. If you grab one end, the other will slant, but if you take the middle, both ends will balance.” Then he said, “Stick to the middle in all affairs.”

[Hilyah al-Awliyaa’ 4/45]

See also: Two things for which there are no concessions

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One thought on “Everything has two ends and a middle

  1. Pingback: Two things for which there are no concessions | Tulayhah

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