How to Become Patience
The person who does not practice patience and in whose life there is no patience is not free in reality. Rather, he is a slave. Patience is of three types:
1. Patience in (the face of) calamities
2. Patience upon obligatory actions
3. Patience upon (running into) sins
Whoever does not possess the capital of patience is involved in lusts and is serving Satan and the self. Because of this, man becomes so misfortunate that, instead of obeying God, he follows Satan and selfish desires. This is slavery. The person who cannot practice patience in the face of calamities remains involved in the slavery of this humiliation. For his selfish desires, he is always ready for every type of disgrace and for flattering everyone. In order to fulfil his desires, he is not ashamed to bow before the world’s
base and disgraceful individuals. He has places the shackles (chains) of selfish desires upon his neck and is bound in the chains of lust. A noble man saves himself from such slavery, attains freedom, and cures himself. By means of knowledge and action, he frees himself from the prison of desires. Because of his selfish desires, a man who is not patient bows before a human being just like him, though that person is also dependent upon the Creator of the Universe for his existence. However, if during a calamity, he bowed his heart before God and focused his attention toward God, then he would be free in both worlds. Therefore, the person who is patient is a servant of God, whereas a person who does not practice patience is not God’s servant. Rather, he is the slave of Satan and the self.
“What a bad trade it is that one exchanges his self for this world instead of trading it with whatever is available with God-Almighty (in the Next- World).” -Nahjul-Balagha