The word ṣād is the key to His name Self-Sufficient [ṣamad]. The Self-Sufficient is He who is hallowed beyond encompassment by the knowledge of the created thing and incomparable with comprehension by the recognitions.
He is saying, “I am the Self-Sufficient and have no need for anyone. I am the One and have no associate. I am the Compeller, and no one has the color of union with Me. I am the Owner of the kingdom, and no matter what I do, no one has the gall to protest or a way to fight.”
Abu'l-Ḥasan Kharaqānī said, “He cut up the hearts of the sincerely truthful and turned their livers to water through waiting, but He gave Himself to no one.”
Whence do water and dust become privy to talk of union with that which has no beginning and no end? What access do the attributes of the newly arrived things have to eternity? How can that which was not, then was, then was not, perceive the majestic presence of the Possessor of Majesty? That chevalier said it beautifully:
“They opened a door to the garden of union with You so that people would fall into coveting You.
They plundered so many of the spirits of the great ones, but not one put his foot at the top of Your street.”
It has been said that the Real is the Self-Sufficient, and the meaning of the name is that the servants should lift up their needs to Him, consign their occupations to Him, and entrust themselves to Him; and He, in His unneediness, will look upon the needs of everyone and be sufficient for their every occupation.
When the tawḤīd-voicing, faithful servant has this belief, He will take as his shelter nothing but His threshold and will not disgrace himself at the door of any poor and paltry thing. “A created thing seeking aid from a created thing is like a prisoner seeking aid from a prisoner.”
It has come in the traditions that tomorrow a man of this community will be brought forward, and many sashes of unbelief will be removed from his waist-I mean sashes of the heart, not outward sashes, for anyone who attaches his heart to a creature has bound a sash around his heart. O chevalier! There is no mount quicker than the mount of MuḤammad the Arab, and no playing field vaster than his playing field.
Heaven and earth were made from the dust beneath his feet, God's spirit was made to sit like a chamberlain at the edge of his carpet, and the Holy Spirit carried the banner of his sultanate on its shoulders. Despite all the greatness, status, and rank that were his, it was said to him, “O MuḤammad, beat the drum of your own incapacity! Say: 'I do not own benefit for myself, or harm' [7:188]. Say, 'There is nothing in the hands of MuḤammad. The benefit and loss of the servants is only by the decree of the divine predetermination.' Thus will it
be known to the friends that the drink of tawḤīd cannot be mixed with mortal nature.”
“If anyone was worshiping MuḤammad, surely MuḤammad is dead. If anyone was worshiping God, surely He is the Living who does not die.”
It has also been said that ṣād is an oath sworn by the limpidness [ṣafāÌ] of the friends' love: How exalted is the individual and how great the servant by the limpidness of whose love the Exalted Lord swears an oath! This is the broken-hearted and indigence-colored soul before whose indigence all the wealthy of the world are one speck. All the obedient acts of the obedient and all the beautiful deeds of the proximate are ransom to one instant of the burning of his indigence. He has no water on his liver and no utensils in his house; all he has is a burnt heart. His work in this world has not been taken care of, but how will that harm him? For the throne of his good fortune is placed in the garden of proximity, and the majesty of the Unity swears an oath by the limpidness of his love: “ṣād!”
ʿAbdallāh Bustī was one of the great shaykhs. At the beginning of his desire when he was accepted by this talk, he held many title deeds against the people, but he gave them all back and absolved them of all liability. Then the thought of Mecca occurred to him. He consulted with his pir and asked for counsel. The desirer must have a pir, for it is impossible to walk on the road without a pir. The pir must be such that if the desirer should go ten times a day to the tavern, the pir should have no fear but should go after him and bring him out and be tender to him.
When ʿAbdallāh Bustī spoke of his thought about going to Mecca, the pir said, “That's good, but be careful not to feel secure from your own soul.” ʿAbdallāh wrote this advice on his heart and set out on foot. He went from his house as far as Kufah, and then his soul wanted lawful fish. He made a pact with his soul that, if he should fulfill this desire, the soul would have no other wish until he reached Mecca.
In Kufah there was a donkey mill, and a man was sitting there. He said to him, “How much do you pay for this animal?” He said so much. ʿAbdallāh said, “Be a good man and let this animal out for a day and tie me in its place.” He gave himself for the wage of one silver dirham and went into the donkey mill and did the work of an animal. He took the dirham, bought bread and fish, and ate. Then he said to his soul, “For every wish you have, you must work one day in a donkey mill so that you may have the wish.”
O chevalier! You must put all the tools of your ability to work so that incapacity appears. When incapacity appears, all work will itself turn its face to you, for “The incapacity to perceive is perception.”
The Pir of the Tariqah said, “Alas the Friend who keeps on stirring up the dust of trial! Water is pouring from the springhead of my eyes. He is a fire who burns the spirit and heart, a teacher who teaches nothing but trial and iniquity. His hands are always bloody from killing lovers, for His room is not inside the street of well-being. Wherever He takes up residence, He wants the spirit as repast. Safety becomes lost in trial, detachment in preoccupation.”