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(Masnavi Book 3: 67) The death of Bilal




How Bilál, may God be well-pleased with him, died rejoicing.

When Bilál from weakness became (thin) as the new-moon, the hue of death fell upon Bilál's face.
His wife saw him (in this state) and cried, Oh, sorrow! Then Bilál said to her, “Nay, nay! (Say),
‘Oh, joy!’
Until now I have been in sorrow from living: how shouldst you know how delightful death is, and what it is (in reality)?”

3520. He was saying this, and at the very moment of saying it his countenance was blooming with narcissi, rose-leaves, and red anemones.
The glow of his face and his eye full of radiance were giving testimony to (the truth of) his
words.
Every black-hearted one was regarding him as black (and despising him); (but) why is the man
(pupil) of the eye black?
The man (spiritually) blind is black-faced, (but) the Man of the (inward) eye (the Seer) is the mirror for the Moon.
Who in the world, indeed, sees the man of your (inward) eye except the Man of piercing sight?

3525. Since none but the Man of the eye beheld it, who, then, but he attained to (knowledge of) its (essential) colour?
Therefore all except him (the Seer) are imitators (without immediate knowledge) in regard to the
attributes of the sublime man of the eye.
His (Bilál's) wife said to him, (This is) the parting, O man of goodly qualities. “Nay, nay, said he, it is the union, the union (with God).”
The wife said,To-night you wilt go to a strange country, you wilt become absent from your family and kindred.
“Nay, nay, he replied; contrariwise, to-night in sooth from a strange country my spirit is coming home.”

3530. She said, “Where shall we behold your face? He answered, “In God's chosen circle.” His chosen circle adjoins you, if you look upward, not downward.
In that circle the Light from the Lord of created beings is gleaming like the bezel in the circle (of the seal-ring).

Alas,she said, this house has been ruined. “Look on the moon,said he, “do not look on the cloud.
He has ruined it in order that He may make it more flourishing: my kinsfolk were numerous and the house was (too) small.

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