Imam Abu Muhammad Jafar b. Muhammad al-Sadiq b. Ali b. Hussein b. Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) is the most celebrated among the Sufi Sheikhs for the subtlety of his discourse and his acquaintance with spiritual truths. He has written famous books in explanation of Sufism. He said:

“Whoever attains marifat (knowledge of Allah) turns his face from all other”.

The Gnostic (arif) does not see other worldly things because his marifat (knowledge of Allah) is total denial of others. The denial of all other than Allah is marifat and marifat of others is the denial of the Truth (Allah). Therefore, the Gnostic is free from the creature and in union with the Truth. He does not have that much heed for others that it might keep him away from the Truth nor it is of so extreme value that it might attract him toward itself.

He said:

“There is no right worship without repentance, because Allah hath put repentance before worship, and hath said,

“those that turn (to Allah) in repentance” (Q 9:112).

I put repentance before divine service, because repentance is the start point in way of Path and worship is the last. When Allah mentioned of the evildoers He made repentance mandatory and said:

“And O ye Believers! Turn ye all together towards Allah,” (Q 24:31);

But when Allah mentioned the Prophet (peace be upon him) He referred him to His “servant ship” and said,

“So did (Allah) convey the inspiration to His Servant – (Conveyed) what He (meant) to convey.” (Q 53:10).

Once Dawud Tai came to Jafar Sadiq and said,

“O son of the Prophet (peace be upon him) of Allah,  advise me, for my heart is blackened.”

Jafar replied:

“O Abu Suleman, you are the accomplished ascetic of your time, what for you need advise from me?”

Tai pleaded:

“O son of the Prophet (peace be upon him), thy family is superior to all  mankind, and it is incumbent on thee to give counsel to all.”

Jafar said:

“O Abu Suleman, I am afraid that tomorrow on Resurrection Day my grandsire will lay hold on me, saying,`Why did not you fulfill the obligation to follow in my steps?` because before Allah the best is ones  conduct not his ancestry.”

Dawud Tai began to weep and exclaimed:

“O Lord Allah, if one whose lineage is of Prophetic family, whose grandsire is the Prophet, and whose mother is Fatima (may Allah be pleased with her) – if such as one is distracted by doubts about his end, who am I that I should be pleased with my dealings (towards Allah)?”

One day Jafar talked to his associates, “Let us take a pledge that whoever amongst us should gain deliverance on the Day of Resurrection would intercede for the rest.”

They said, “O son of the prophet, how could you have need of our intercession since your grandsire intercedes for all mankind?”

Jafar replied, “My actions are such that I shall be ashamed to face him on the Last Day.”

All of his sayings are the result of self account which is a quality of perfection, and is a characteristic of Prophets and Saints. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said,

“When Allah wishes a man well, He gives him insight into his faults.”

Whoever bows his head with humility, like a servant, Allah exalt his state in both worlds.