Page:Alchemyofhappiness en.djvu/68

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60
Ghazzali's Alchemy of Happiness.

"those who control their wrath, and who pardon the men who offend them."[1] Notice, that in his eternal word, God praises those who dissipate their anger and irritation: he does not praise those who had no anger or rage, since man cannot be without them.

The fifth class of persons in error are those who say that, "God is merciful and ready to pardon, loving and compassionate, and more pitiful to his servants than a father and mother to their children, and therefore he will pardon our faults and cover our transgressions." They do not 'teonsider that notwithstanding God is bounteous and merciful, there are still multitudes of poor and miserable people in the world, multitudes who are infirm and helpless, and many who are subjected to suffering. This is a mystery which is known only to God. But it shows us, that though God is disposed to cover and hide sin, still he is an absolute sovereign and an avenger. While he is bounteous and beneficent, he is at the same time dreadful in his chastisements: while he is a benefactor, and provides the necessaries of life, at the same time he who does not seek to gain, obtains no store: and he who is not industrious, accomplishes nothing in the world. Beloved, these ignorant men, in the affairs of the world, in their schemes of living, and in their business, manifest no trust in the bounty of God, nor do they leave off for one moment their buying and selling, their trades or their farming, although God has decreed the means of their existence many years before they Were born, and has made himself surety that it should be provided for them. He announces in his eternal word and book of mighty distinctions, that "there is no creature on the earth, for whom God has not taken upon himself to provide nourishment."[2] Still they make not the least exertion in reference to their relations and condition in eter-

  1. S. 3:138.
  2. S. 11:8.