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(Masnavi Book 3: 40) Buhlul and the Dervish







How Buhl questioned a certain dervish.

Buhlúl said to a certain dervish, “How art thou, O dervish? Inform me.

1885. He said, How should that one be, according to whose desire the work of the world goes on?—

According to whose desire the torrents and rivers flow, and the stars move in such wise as he wills;
And Life and Death are his officers, going to and fro according to his desire.
He sends (what entails) condolence wheresoever he will; he bestows (what entails) felicitation wheresoever he will.
The travellers on the Way (go) according to his pleasure; they that have lost the Way (are fallen)
in his snare.

1890. No tooth flashes with laughter in the world without the approval and command of that imperial personage.”
He (Buhlúl) said, O King, you have spoken truly: it is even so: this is manifest in your (spiritual)
radiance and (glorious) aspect.
You art this and a hundred times as much, O veracious one; but expound this (mystery) and explain it very well,
In such fashion that (both) the virtuous (wise) and the man given to vanity (folly) may assent when it comes to their ears.
Expound it in your discourse in such a way that the understanding of the vulgar may profit thereby.”

1895. The perfect speaker is like one who distributes trays of viands, and whose table is filled with every sort of food,
So that no guest remains without provisions, (but) each one gets his (proper) nourishment separately:
(Such a speaker is) like the Qur’án which is sevenfold in meaning, and in which there is food for the elect and for the vulgar.
He (the dervish) said, This at least is evident to the vulgar, that the world is subject to the
command of God.
No leaf drops from a tree without the predestination and ordainment of that Ruler of Fortune.

1900. No morsel goes from the mouth towards the gullet till God says to that morsel, Enter!’ The inclination and desire which is Man's nose-rein—its movement is subject to the command of that Self-sufficient One.
In (all) the earths and heavens not an atom moves a wing, not a straw turns,
Save by His eternal and effectual command. To expound (this) is impossible, and presumption is not good.
Who may number all the leaves of the trees? How may the Infinite become amenable to speech?

1905. Hear this much, (however): since all action (in the universe) only comes to pass by the command of the Maker,
When the predestination of God becomes the pleasure of His servant, he (the servant) becomes
a willing slave to His decree,
Not (because of) tasking himself, and not on account of the (future) reward and recompense;
nay, his nature has become so goodly.
He does not desire his life for himself nor to the end that he may enjoy the life that is found sweet (by others).
Wheresoever the Eternal Command takes its course, living and dying are one to him.

1910. He lives for God's sake, not for riches; he dies for God's sake, not from fear and pain. His faith is (held) for the sake of (doing) His will, not for the sake of Paradise and its trees and streams.
His abandonment of infidelity is also for God's sake, not for fear lest he go into the Fire.
That disposition of his is like this originally: it is not (acquired by) discipline or by his effort and endeavour.

He laughs at the moment when he sees (the Divine) pleasure: to him Destiny is even as sugared sweetmeat.”

1915. The servant (of God) whose disposition and character is (like) this—does not the world move according to his command and behest?
Then why should he make entreaty and cry in prayer, O God, avert this destiny”?
For God's sake his (own) death and the death of his children is to him like sweetmeat in the gullet.
To that loyal one the death-agony of his children is like honeycakes to a destitute old man.
Why, then, should he invoke (God), unless perchance he see the pleasure of the (Divine) Judge in (such) invocation?

1920. That righteous servant does not make that intercession and invocation from his own mercifulness.
He has burned up (consumed away) his own mercifulness at the moment when he has lighted the lamp of love of God.
Love is the Hell-fire of his attributes, and it has burnt up the attributes of self, hair by hair. When did any night-traveller understand this distinction except Daqúqí? (He understood it), so that he sped into this (spiritual) empire.

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