وَاِنْ مِنْ شَىْءٍ اِلاَّ يُسَبِّحُ بِحَمْدِهِ
This is part of a letter written in response to a gift from his well-known student, Hulusi Yahyagil.
T h i r d l y : You sent me a present and want to break an extremely important rule of mine! Just this time I am not going to say: “I don’t accept presents from you in the same way that I don’t accept them from Abdülmecid and Abdurrahman, my brother and nephew,” because since you are more advanced than them and closer in spirit, I can’t refuse them even if I refuse everyone else’s. But apropos of this, I shall tell you the reason for my rule. It is like this:
The Old Said never accepted favours. He preferred death to becoming obliged to people. He never broke that rule of his despite suffering great hardship and difficulty. This wretched brother of yours inherited this characteristic from the Old Said, and it is not asceticism or artificial self-sufficiency; there are four or five important reasons for it:
The First: The people of misguidance accuse religious scholars of securing advantage through their learning. They attack them unfairly, saying: “They are exploiting knowledge and religion to make a living for themselves.” This has to be shown to be false in practice.
The Second: We are charged with following the prophets in disseminating the truth. In the All-Wise Qur’an those who do this say:
إِنْ اَجْرِىَ إِلاَّ عَلَى اللهِ إِنْ اَجْرِىَ إِلاَّ عَلَى اللهِ
and they display independence. Most meaningful in regard to this matter is the verse in Sura Ya. Sin.:
اِتَّبِعُوا مَنْ لاَ يَسْئَلُكُمْ اَجْرًا وَهُمْ مُهْتَدُونَ
The Third: As is explained in the First Word, one should give in the name of Allah and take in the name of Allah. Whereas mostly either the one giving is heedless and gives in his own name and implicitly puts the recipient under an obligation, or the recipient is heedless; he gives the thanks and praise due to the True Provider to apparent causes and is in error.