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Piety of the heart and the body

By: Ayatullah Shaheed Syed Abdul Husayn Dastaghaib Shirazi
Piety sometimes belongs to the physical organs and sometimes it is in the heart. Importance is for the piety of the heart. The piety of the body and physical organs is temporary and always in danger. Its value is less compared to the piety of heart. For instance, it is the outward (physical) piety because of which most of the people observe Ramadhan fasts under the influence of what their parents told them; that if you do not fast purposely you will have to observe fasts for sixty consecutive days. If one eats openly during Ramadhan on the first instance, he should be given 20 lashes. On the second occasion fifty lashes and for third or fourth the sentence is killing or death. This punishment may be given in this world or not his chastisement in the Hereafter is definite (in hell). The parents told these things to the child and therefore one observed fasts of Ramadhan. He also heard that the one who does not perform prayer passes away from this world as a disbeliever. One who does not pray does not get the intercession of the Holy Prophet and the Ahle Bait. Whoever does not pray will burn in hellfire, as Quran says:

How is that they brought you to hellfire? They reply: We did not pray.
In brief, what made them tremble is what they heard from the pulpit or from their parents or what they read or heard from Quran. This is an impossible piety. The inner or the piety of the heart is that a man understands and is convinced of what God wants him to understand, as to know God and to know the status of man. Some years pass by and, by the Grace of God, a light is lit up in his heart and then he understands the greatness of God. This is the piety of the heart. Such understanding makes him shiver.
They tremble on hearing the Name of Allah.
If piety does not reach the heart, the Name of God is just like all other names for him.

Remains careful like a cat but
In order to make you understand the meaning of the Piety of heart and the compelled Piety, I give you an example, there are some who are much forward in the matter of showing their saintliness like a cat. You have seen that when it rains, a cat slips away from the side of a wall as a precautionary measure, fearing to become wet. Woe unto the cat. A splash of rain makes a cat unhappy. But where does this holiness of the cat go away when it jumps into a pond to catch a fish? It drowns half of its body in the water of the pound. When it is the turn of desire and passion, it forgets al piousness.
In the book Oddatutdai, a narration is quoted from the Holy Prophet, the last messenger of God: In the Hereafter, on the Day of Judgment, a group from my Ummah (community) will have a lot of good deeds, like pieces of Egyptian cloth in whiteness and brightness but "It will be ordained: Throw all of them in hell." It will be exclaimed: O Prophet of God! All these people were performers of prayer. The reply will be: Yes, they did not give up prayer. They will again say: They had observed fasts too. The reply: Yes, they did fast. They will ask: O Messenger of God! Then what has made them to be thrown into hell? The reply will be: These performers of prayer and observers of fasts were such that when they saw unlawful wealth, they fell on it head on. (Here the Arabic word Wathaba means jumping). Just as a cat jumps on a fish these pious people also jump upon unlawful wealth. For example: His father died. His wealth came in his hands. He is told: This is the portion of your brother and this of your sister. Give it to them. Why do you not observe your fathers will? He says: Leave aside such things. He does not possess the Piety of the heart. Come; now let us find out the path leading to the Piety of the heart.

Understanding the greatness of His creation results in the Piety of Heart
You look at the outer space and observe that there are stars and stars. In these galaxies there are millions of suns and other globes or spheres. They are like our galaxy. But they are not yet visible to us. In the second galaxy they have found out a star or planet with a diameter of one-milliard and six hundred thousand kilo meters. If this star appears in our solar system, it will cover one-sixth of the entire sky. If it comes up here, there would never be night due to its brightness.
I mention this just by way of an example. How vast is the machinery of this creation of God! All these huge spheres are revolving and moving by the orders of Only One Might. Their Director is One. Their Manager is One. Just think about the movement of this our earth. In spite of its bulk it does not deviate from its fixed path even for an instant. Same is the case of the movement of the sun with all its mammothness. They are, by nature, made to follow the path fixed for them. There are some among you who are sixty or more years old. Have you every seen any such deviation till today? This twelve Signs of Zodiac! God is the Greatest! You see that it is at its original place. The length of days and nights increase and decrease regularly every year. Throughout your life span have you observed even the slightest waywardness? How regularly the night continues to become shorter and shorter up to the start of spring. Then days and nights become equal. Again days become longer till the end of spring. Then it reverses. These changes take place with extreme precision. This is not so for the last sixty years but it might be for the last sixty thousand years and may continue for thousands of years. So say:
Allah is the greatest. Blessed be Allah the best of creators. This is the will of the most powerful and the wise.

Both an elephant and a mosquito are from one mechanism
A mosquito, which can be blown away easily is similar to an elephant in the mode of creation. The God who gave a trunk to the elephant has given it to a mosquito too. During some nights it sits on your body and awakes you, so that you may understand. Yet why do you not exclaim God is Great (Allaho Akbar)? O God! What is this sting, which made a hole in my body? What a wonderful sense of hearing have You given to it. As soon as you raise you hand it flies off. The hearing faculty of this mosquito is so great that its hears a noise, which you cannot. (like a radar). When you raise your hand, its noise is so faint that you cannot hear it but that mosquito does. O God! How astonishing is Your creation! You have given it ear, eye, hands and feet in addition to two wings. An elephant does not have wings. If a faithful person thinks and meditates he becomes enlightened under the influence of piety. Gods greatness gets entrenched in his heart. One of its signs is that he regards that thing great which makes him think and realize Gods greatness. He realizes that the greatest of all human beings is Muhammad, the last Messenger of God, ever since the Lord of the Worlds created the universe. The more you realize Gods greatness, the more you become aware of Muhammad who is Gods representative. This universe is but an exudation from the exudations of Muhammad.
Imam Sadiq at the time of uttering the name of his holy grandfather Muhammad was becoming so much respectful that his cheek almost touched, in humility, his knees on the ground. He never uttered the holy name without making or maintaining ablution. It is prohibited for every Muslim to touch this holy name without ablution. To do so is an insult to the Prophet.
By the way, it must be known that, this applies, when by this name, is meant the Holy Prophet, not anyone who has this name.

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