It is said that Sayyiduna Yūsuf álayhis salām complained to Allāh of his lengthy imprisonment. Allāh replied: ‘You asked for it yourself when you said: “My Lord! I prefer prison than that towards which they beckon.” If you had said: ‘I prefer your protection.. ’, I would have delivered you. [fa law qulta: al áāfiyatu aĥabbu ilayya, la úūfītu]And then Allāh delivered him from prison, as mentioned in His lofty book. When Sayyiduna Yūsuf álayhis salām was released and promoted by the Ázīz, he had this written on the prison gate: ‘This is the place of affliction, and the grave of the living, the glee of enemies and the sorrow of friends’


We [Shaykh ibn Arabi] narrate from the Ĥadīth of Hāshimi in which he reports (from a continuous chain) from Nabiyy śallAllāhu álayhi wa sallam: “Live in this world as a stranger or as a wayfarer. Count ye, yourself from among the dead. If you rise in the morning, worry not of the evening; and in the evening do not talk of the next morn. Make provision for illness from when you are healthy; from your youth for your old-age. from your days of liesure, for days when you are busy and engrossed; and make provision from this life for [that after] your death. For, thou knowest not, what thy name shalt be on the morrow…(dead or living?)”

kun fi’d dunyā ka annaka gharīb aw áābiru sabīl; waádad nafsaka fi’l mawtā. fa idhā aşbaĥta nafsaka falā tuĥaddith-hā bi’l masā’a. wa idhā amsayta falā tuĥaddith-hā bi’ş şabāĥ. wa khudh min şiĥĥatika li saqamik; wa min shabābika li haramik; wa min farāghika li shughlik; wa min ĥayātika li wafātik. fa innaka lā tadri mā ismuka ghadan.

Muĥāđarat al-Abrār wa Musāmarat al-Akhyār, Vol.2; Muĥīyuddin Shaykh al-Akbar ibn al-Árabi quddisa sirruh