“Having patience in restraining oneself from desires is easier than having patience upon what the desire itself entails, because it:
• Either necessitates pain and punishment, or it cuts off a delight that would have been greater than it.
• Or it will waste much of ones time, whose wastage is only a means of sorrow and regret, or it causes a breach in ones honour, such honour whose rise and continuation would have been more beneficial than its defilement.
• Or it causes the loss of wealth, which if it remained would have been better than its loss, or it causes the loss of ones value and authority, such that its having been upheld would have been better than its absense.
• Or it causes one to become deprived of a blessing, a blessing whose having been accomplished and reached would have been more joyful and pleasant than the fulfilment of the desire.
• Or it opens upon you an approach, such that was not found before , or that it brings about distress, and sorrow, and grief, and fear, such that it outweighs the pleasure of the desire itself.
• Or it causes the loss of knowledge, whose remembrance would have been more delightful than to earn the desire.
• Or that you cause and enemy of yours to rejoice at your misfortune – and cause a close friend sorrow,
• Or that you sever from yourself the opening of an imminent blessing, or that you bring about a deficiency – such that you become marked with it – a mark irremovable.
For indeed actions leave behind attributes and characteristics. “
Imam Ibn al-Qayyim in al-Fawaa`id