Amir al-mu'minin's address to his followers
on the battlefield of Siffin
About supporting the weak and the low-spirited during the fighting
Whoever among you feels
spiritedness of heart during the action and finds any of his comrades
feeling disheartened should ward off (the enemies) from him just as he
would do from himself, because of the superiority he enjoys over the
other, for if Allah had willed He would have made the former also like
him. Certainly death is a quick seeker.
Neither does the steadfast
escape it nor can the runner-away defy it. The best death is to be killed.
By Allah in Whose hand (power) lies the life of the son of Abu Talib,
certainly a thousand strikings of the sword on me are easier to me than a
death in bed which is not in obedience to Allah.
A part of
the same sermon
It is as if I see you
uttering voices like the rustling sound of lizards! You do not seek your
own claims nor do you defend against oppression. You have been let free on
the path. He who rushes (into the battle) achieves salvation, while he who
lags behind, hesitating, gets destruction.