From the morals and manners of the Salaf was that they possessed tender hearts and would weep much because of their deficiency in their duties towards Allaah the Most High, so that He may have mercy upon them.
The Messenger of Allaah (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallaam) said, “If you knew what I knew, you would have laughed little and wept much.”
The companions of Allaah’s Messenger (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallaam) thereupon sobbed while covering their faces.¹
Ali (radiallaahu`anhu) said, “I saw the companions of Allaah’s Messenger (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallaam), but today I see no one like them! They would arise in the morning dusty, pale with dishevelled hair. Between their two eyes a mark like a goat’s knee because they had spent the night in prostration and long standings. Rolling up and down between their feet and their foreheads. So if the morning came, they would stand steadily as a (swaying) tree does on a windy day. Their eyes would be bathed in tears. By Allaah! It is as if I am now with people who have slept forgetful.”
Umar ibn al_khattab (radiallaahu`anhu) had two black lines on his face from his excessive weeping. Ibn ‘Abbaas (radiallaahu`anhu) had marks like a worn out shoe-lace under his eyes from his excessive weeping.
Ka’b al-Ahbaar (rahimahullaah) said, “I prefer to weep out of the fear of Allaah (even) with only one tear drop falling from my eyes than to spend a mountain of gold with an ungracious heart.”
Ali (radiallaahu`anhu) would say, “The signs of the righteous are: a pale complexion, bleary eyes, lips shrivelling from their hunger, weeping, and wakefulness in prayer at night.”