The Language of the Future
by Murshid F.A. Ali ElSenossi
(Ibtila). In being subjected to trial and affliction (Bala') the Sufi gains more Knowledge of Allah, Who is the First Cause. When hard times come the Sufi has a feast day, because he sees beyond the trial to Allah Himself. He sees beyond the contraction to The One Who Contracts. For ordinary man there can be a negative side to his assuming the traits of the Divine Names. In manifesting such Names as the Slayer, the Avenger or the Terrible-in-Punishment, man faces a trial (ibtila).
(Bala). The friends of Allah are visited by many sicknesses and tribulations. Affliction refers to bodily illnesses and diverse troubles. It is Allah's favour to His friends. They love only Allah and see only Allah, so whatever comes from Allah is good. On the Day of Alast when the sons of Adam answered "Yes" to the Divine Address of "Am I not your Lord?", the Lovers of Allah answered 'Bala', which means both 'Yes' and 'Affliction'.
(Idlal). Man has been given the choice as to which path he takes on the return journey to his Origin. In this life he can make the Journey of Return to his Sacred Centre under Divine Guidance which is manifested in the Prophets of Allah and His friends. But, he can be prevented from making the journey in this life due to Misguidance (Idlal) which is manifested in Satan and his friends.