Haram bin Hiyaan said, “I wish, by Allah, that I was a tree that a camel would eat and discharge as droppings, and that I would not endure the reckoning of the Day of Resurrection; verily, I fear the Great Calamity.“
And Ali bin al Hussain would turn yellow when he made wuduu’ and [his appearance would] change. So it would be said to him, “What is it?” He would say, “Do you know before Whom I will stand?“
And Muhammad bin Waasi’ would cry for most of the night and would not let up.
And Umar bin Abdul-Azeez, if death was mentioned, would quiver the way the birds quiver, and cry until his tears wet his beard.
And one night he cried, and those in his house wept [with him]. Faatimah [his wife] said, “What is with you o Ameerul-Mu’mineen? From what are you weeping?” He said, “I remembered the departure of the people before Allah ta’aala, a party in Paradise, and a party in the Blazing Fire.” Then he shrieked and [had to be] covered up.
And when al-Mansoor sought Jerusalem, he stopped at a monastery Umar bin Abdul-Azeez would stay at. So he said, “Inform me about the strangest thing you saw from Umar.” [It was replied], “He spent one night on the roof of this room of mine and it is made of marble. So I found water dripping from the roof [gutter]. I went up and [found him] prostrating, and the tears from his eyes were flowing down the gutter.” ALLAAHU-AKBAR!!!
And we narrated about Umar bin Abdul-Azeez and Fat’h al-Mousalee that they would cry [tears of] blood.
And Ibrahim bin Isa al-Yashkaree said, “I entered upon a man in Bahrein who had withdrawn from the people and gave all his time to himself. He remembered something from the affairs of the aakhirah and he remembered death. He began to sob until his soul left him.“
And Masma’ said, “I witnessed Abdul-Waahid bin Zayd when he was exhorting the people, and four people died that day in the gathering.“
And Yazeed bin Murshid would cry often and say, “By Allah, if my Lord promised to imprison me in the bathroom, it would be a right upon me to never cease weeping. So how is it when He has promised to imprison me in the Fire if I disobey Him?“
And Saari as-Saqatee said, “Verily, I look every day at my nose, fearing that my face has become blackened.“
This is the fear of the angels and prophet and ulemaa and awliyaa. And we are more deserving of having fear than they. But fear [does not come] with the plentitude of sins, rather with the clarity of the heart and the perfection of knowledge. And we feel safe due to the dominance of our ignorance and the strength of our hard-heartedness. The purified heart is burned by the slightest knowledge, and the hardened heart will miss all exhortations.
And some of the salaf said, “I said to a monk, ‘Advise me.’ He said, ‘If you are able to reach the rank of a man who [finds himself] surrounded by beasts and vermin and he is fearful and cautious and fears that they will eat him if he is inattentive or bite him if he is unmindful- so he is terrified- then do so.“
And what this monk said about the thinking of a man surrounded by beasts and vermin- this is the reality of the true mu’min- the one who looks into his interior with the light of his insight will find it full of beasts and vermin like anger and hate and envy and pride and conceit and showing off and what is besides that. And all of that bites him and eats him if he is inattentive to them, unless he is screened from seeing them. So if the cover is removed and he is placed in the grave, he will see [these qualities] with his own eyes in the form of snakes and scorpions. They are his characteristics present [in him] now, so whoever desires to vanquish them before death and kill them, let him do it, or else will have to adjust himself wholeheartedly to their sting.