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(Masnavi Book 2: 63) How four persons quarrelled about grapes, which were known to each of them by a different name





How four persons quarrelled about grapes, which were known to each of them by a different name.



A certain man gave a dirhem to four persons: one of them (a Persian) said, “I will spend this on angúr.” The second one was an Arab: he said, “No, I want inab, not angúr, O rascal!”
The third was a Turk; and he said, “This (money) is mine: I don't want inab, I want uzum.

The fourth, a Greek, said, “Stop this talk: I want istáfíl.


3685. These people began fighting in contention with one another, because they were unaware of the hidden meaning of the names.

In their folly they smote each other with their fists: they were full of ignorance and empty of knowledge.

If a master of the esoteric had been there, a revered and many-languaged man, he would have pacified them; And then he would have said, With this one dirhem I will give all of you what ye wish.
When without deceit ye surrender your hearts (to me), this dirhem will do all this for you.


3690. Your one dirhem will become four—the result desired: four enemies will become one through unanimity. What each one of you says produces strife and separation; what I say brings you agreement.
Therefore be ye mute, keep silence, that I may be your tongue in speech and talk.”

(Even) if in their agreement with each other your words are (as) a strong rope, in effect they are a source of contention and distraction.

Borrowed (accidental) heat produces no (essential) effect; natural heat has (its own) virtue.


3695. If you have made vinegar hot by means of fire, (still) when you drink it, it will undoubtedly increase the coldness (of your constitution),

Because that (artificially produced) heat of it is exotic: its fundamental nature is coldness and tartness.

And (on the other hand), though grape-syrup be frozen, my son, it will add heat to the liver when you drink it.

Hence the Shaykh's hypocrisy is better than our sincerity, for the former arises from (spiritual) insight, while the latter arises from (spiritual) blindness.

From the Shaykh's discourse comes union (concord); the words of the envious bring separation (discord).


3700. As (for example) Solomon, who sped (on his prophetic mission) from God, and who knew the language of all birds— In the time of his just sway the deer made friends with the leopard and ceased from war.
The dove became secure from the talons of the hawk, the sheep took no precaution against the wolf.

He (Solomon) became an arbitrator between enemies: he became a (means of establishing) oneness between the creatures that fly with wings.

You art running after grain, like an ant. Hark! seek for Solomon! Why art you still astray?


3705. To the seeker of grain his grain becomes a snare, but the seeker of Solomon may have both (Solomon and the grain). In these latter days the soul-birds have no security from each other for a moment;
(Yet) even in our epoch there is a Solomon who would give (us) peace and not suffer our injustice to continue. Call to mind (the text), There is no people down to (the words) but in the past a warner dwelt among them.
God said that verily there has never been a people devoid of a vicar of God and a man of spiritual power;


3710. And he makes the soul-birds so unanimous that, in respect of sincerity, he purges them of (all) guile and rancour. They become (as) kind as a mother: he (Mohammed) said of the Moslems, “(They are as) one soul.”
(It was) through the Messenger of Allah they became one soul; else, they were absolute enemies, every one (to the other).

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