Hakim al Ummat Maulana Ashraf `Ali Thanawi (Allah be well-pleased with him) related in Maqalat Sufiyah the statement of Sayyidi Shibil (Allah sanctify his secret) that:
“Istiqamat is to conceptualize every (present) moment as that of Qiyamat, meaning that thinking of each moment as such will bring about steadfastness (istiqama) in ones state and actions.” (Pg 37, Ed: Dar al Isha`at, Karachi)
It is interesting to note that the Day of Resurrection (qiyama) is one wherein everyone will have certainty of the truth of Allah’s religion, so much so that Maulana Rumi stated very beautifully and insightfully that “No kafir will enter Hell” i.e. since everyone will technically be a “believer” in Allah at that point.
There are two further points of importance in using the allegory of “Qiyama“, which is that it is the day wherein:
(a) All will be actualized in their knowledge that Allah is watching over us (muraqabah), and,
(b) From among all such people, specific ones (namely the believers) will be granted the Beatific Vision of God (mushahada), which is the ultimate reward of the believer.
Both these realizations will be eternal and endless on the Day of Return and so by alluding to Qiyama the author is stating that istiqama within this world is both in (1) Our knowledge of Allah’s witnessing that will lead to (2) Our witnessing of Allah in this world bi `ayn al qalb.
(1) without (2) is only walking halfway to Allah, and (2) cannot arise unless one is firmly footed in state (1).