Sitting on a Man’s Back

“I sit on a man’s back, choking him, and making him carry me, and yet assure myself and others that I am very sorry for him and wish to ease his lot by any means possible, except getting off his back.”

– Leo Tolstoy

What better metaphor on Occupation and Tyranny?



4 Responses to Sitting on a Man’s Back

  1. Bilquees says:

    Tolstoy is one of my favorite writers, thinkers, philosophers, and seekers! I am amazed always at how his words have the capacity to hit home those essential truths so well. If he had known a Sufi, I wonder if he would have embraced the path. Myself, I’ve always thought he might have.

    Thank you for the timely quote, Irving. One cannot but think deeply, it seems to me, by studying and contemplating the ideas of Leo Tolstoy.

    Peace and blessings to those with “liberators” and “occupiers” on their backs! May Allah ease their burden as only He can do.

  2. Irving says:

    Amin to your prayer, dear sister Bilquees. And may Allah lift the burden of tyrants and all oppressors from the backs of His creation in all the nations of His earth. Indeed, how foolish is the concept of “nation” and “power” when all the earth belongs to Allah, and there is no power but His. The rest is an illusion of the nafs, the lower ego, but it can cause much misery nonetheless.

    Ya Haqq!

  3. Maliha says:

    this quote is so timely and sad. I love tolstoy too and he did a lot with his life aside from writing too; which is amazing Mashaallah.

    you are right ya darvish; its sad how amensiac we are as a people and how we forget! life is far too short to squandor it for the pursuit of illusory power/wealth/etc.

    it’s so depressing to see those who oppress get away with it (seemingly) and see the innocent suffer even for a moment that is unjust.

  4. diana says:

    brilliant quote! go tolstoy lol

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