Resignation results in a thrilling joy or a heavenly breeze from God’s being pleased with the believer that is proportional to the depth of one’s fear and hope. It does not come from feeling God’s nearness, worship and devotion, the struggle against sin and the temptations of one’s carnal self and Satan. Rather, it is a spiritual delight merged with hope and expectation, regulated by self-possession, a direct gift from Him, and a breath of mercy associated only with this station of being pleased with God. This station requires the self-regulation of one’s thoughts, considerations, plans, hopes, expectations, feelings, and actions according to God’s Will. Thus, seeing it as a way to experience pleasure and delight in the expectation of acquiring that pleasure and delight shows one’s disrespect of this station, which is based on the purity of one’s intention and sincerity. In reality, this applies to all other states and stations attained through actions of the heart, or which are themselves actions of the heart. One must love and pursue His approval or pleasure for His sake only.

Heroes of the spiritual life have expressed their views about resignation and being pleased with God since the early days of Sufism. According to Dhu al-Nun al-Misri, resignation means preferring God’s wishes over one’s own in advance, accepting His decree without complaint based on the realization that whatever God wills and does is good, and overflowing with love of Him even while in the grip of misfortune. ‘Ali Zayn al-’Abidin describes resignation as an initiate’s determination not to pursue anything opposed to God’s Will and pleasure. According to Abu ‘Uthman, resignation denotes welcoming with the same mood all divine decrees and disposals, regardless of whether they issue from His Grace or His Majesty or Wrath, and having no conscious preference for one or the other. God’s Messenger referred to this when he said:

I ask You for resignation after You have decreed something. Being pleased in advance with God’s decree means being determined to show resignation, while resignation signifies enduring calamity when it occurs.

In short, resignation means that an initiate feels no resentment against or displeasure with whatever issues from God’s Divinity or Lordship. Rather, the initiate welcomes it gladly and is ready to accept or endure his or her fate without complaint. The initiate does not upset the balance of his or her heart. Rather, he or she preserves personal integrity and straightforwardness even when confronted with the most distressing and shocking events, considers God’s predestination recorded in the Supreme Preserved Tablet, and thus feels no regret or sorrow for what happens.

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