I do not know why but I began to tremble as I walked forward. The realisation of God’s greatness overcame the intense desire of meeting him. At that instant, I felt so over whelmed by his grandeur that I started to retreat in fear. The Throne was still quite far but the realisation of the magnanimity of the Master of the Throne broke my will. I felt at that moment, that my being would breakdown into countless tiny fragments and disperse into the atmosphere. Perhaps, that is what would have happened, but at that instant, I heard the voice of Archangel Gabriel in my ears, saying:
“Bow down right here Abdullah! Only the noble prophets can go beyond this place.”
Saleh and I both prostrated right there. Thus, I prostrated to the One I had prostrated to all my life without being able to see him, but today, this was after seeing him. Well, I did not really see him; I only saw the signs of his presence.
I do not remember how long and delightful was this act of prostration. The One who bestowed the Sun with a glittering sheet of light and the Moon with a cover of brightness, the One who provided fragrance to flowers and dressed the butterflies with colours, the One who gave sparkle to the stars and jingle to the blooms, the One who granted the skies their sublime crown and to the seas the dominion of vastness, the One who blessed the soil with fertility and adorned rivers with the beauty of flowing water, and the One who endowed man with the ability to communicate and the honour of receiving the revelation of the Qur’an… every moment spent in the feet of such a being was superior to any other honour. Even owning an empire comprised of the seven continents of the world could not have surpassed this experience. However, inevitably this moment had to end. I heard the delightful voice of the Bearers of the Throne chanting:
“‘Hu Allah hu, la Illaha illa Hu’, which meant, ‘He is God, there is no deity worthy of worship except him.”
This was in fact, an announcement that the Master of the Throne was about to speak.
A voice proclaimed:
“I am God and there is no one worthy of worship but me.”
The effect of this magical voice was more delightful than any melody I had ever heard before; it left my body in a state of absolute attentiveness. All my strength suddenly became focused in my ears and my sense of hearing. I wanted to hear more, but there was a pause. I realised that I was expected to say something. The first sentence that came to my trembling lips was:
“Master! This is the only truth I came to realise in my lifetime.”
My voice was so faint that even my own ears could barely hear it. However, it reached the One who knows all, whether hidden or obvious; the One who even knows the secrets embedded deep inside hearts. He replied:
“Not everyone who knows this fact is able to reach here... do you know this, Abdullah? How come you reached here?”
This time, the magnanimous tone in the expression of my Lord had a tinge of affection about it.
“The reason is Abdullah, that you dedicated your life to informing other people about me. You spent your life warning them about the day they will meet me. You made my remembrance, and work for my causes a mission of your life… this is the reward for it.”
At that moment, I just wanted to continue to listen to the words of the Master of Skies and Earth; this felt like the most intense desire I had ever experienced in my life. However, once again, the King of the Worlds became silent. I sensed that my Master was giving me another opportunity to speak. I said:
“Can I stay near you, over here?”
My Lord replied, “no one is far from me Abdullah, neither am I far from anyone. All my obedient servants who lived their lives in my remembrance are close to me, regardless of whether they are men or women. Anything else...?”
The last comment made me realise that the meeting was ending. I said:
“What are my orders, Master?”
“The time to obey orders has long gone”, the Almighty replied. “Soon, it will be time for you to give orders as a king. For the time being, you should return. Life has not begun yet.”
As I was leaving, I said:
“You would not forget me on the Day of Judgement, would you? I have heard a lot about the horrors of that day and your anger.”
I could feel a beautiful smile spreading in the air. A sharp voice followed:
“You human beings are the ones prone to forgetfulness, Abdullah. The King of kings… your Lord, the One who provides for you, does not forget anything. As for my anger, it never over shadows my mercy. You remembered me your entire life with hope and fear. I will also remember you with forgiveness and mercy. However…”
There was a moment of a kingly pause… then he continued:
“… For your consolation, I am sending Saleh along with you. He will look after you.”
This is the account of my first meeting with Saleh, and the real reason for the benefit of his company. I did not have a physical body during my life in Barzakh. Here, my feelings, emotions, experiences, and observations were akin to a dream. It was a nonphysical life but one full of insight. I had full realisation of the blessings that awaited me in the Paradise. Saleh used to visit me regularly, whenever I wished for him to do so. Whenever he would come, he would inform me about all sorts of new things and answer all my questions. Slowly, our friendship became stronger. In our last meeting, he told me that life was about to begin. Hence, today, along with him, I was crossing the vast plane on the Day of Judgement, rapidly moving towards the Throne.
As I was walking along with Saleh, I looked around; it was a never-ending plane, as far as the eyes could see. The atmosphere felt like it used to be just after dusk before sunrise, around the time of morning prayers; it was as if, daybreak was about to scatter all around. At that time, I could see only a handful of people in the field, albeit, all of them had the same destination. I wondered if anyone amongst those people was a prophet or a messenger. I looked towards Saleh; he knew what I wanted to know. He replied:
“All of them woke up earlier. We are in fact, going towards them.”
“Will I get a chance to meet them?” I asked him eagerly, excited like a child. He stopped walking and spoke gently:
“In fact, your life will now be spent amongst them. Abdullah! You have still not managed to grasp what is happening. The trial has now finished. There is no facade anymore. Life is now beginning in real and in this life, righteous people will live along with other righteous people forever, and the ones who are evil, shall live along with people who are evil.”
The truth was that I had still not recovered from the shock of all that was happening around me. In fact, the entire introduction to this new world had already taken place in the Barzakh. That was a kind of non-physical world but now, here, on this Day of Judgement, everything was similar to the physical world in which I lived previously. My hands and feet, my feelings and the earth and the sky around me… everything was similar to what I was used to in the previous world. In that world, I had a home, a family, a neighbourhood, a region and a nation... suddenly there was an explosion in my head. I stopped immediately and grabbing Saleh with both my hands, asked him:
“Where is my family? My relatives, my friends, where are they? What will happen to them? Why can I not see them?”
Saleh answered while avoiding my gaze:
“Do not ask me such questions Abdullah whose answers I do not know. Every person is on his own today. No one can benefit anyone else. If their deeds are good, then remain confident that they will end up meeting you. No injustice shall be done to them.
But, if their deeds are not good, then...”
Saleh left the sentence incomplete and became silent. On hearing his reply, my mood suddenly became sad. He put his hand on my shoulder and tried to elevate my spirit in these words:
“Have faith in God, Abdullah. You were a fighting soldier in God's army. For this reason, you have risen before others. Rest of the people are rising up now. Those people will also meet you, God-willing, in the right circumstances. For the moment, continue to move ahead.”
My moral rose due to his reassurance and I started to walk briskly along with him.
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