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(Masnavi Book 4: 25) The Demon who sat on the throne of Solomon







How the Demon sat on the place (throne) of Solomon, on whom be peace, and imitated his actions; and concerning the manifest difference between the two Solomons, and how the Demon called himself Solomon son of David.

Even if you have intellect, associate and consult with another intellect, O father.
With two intellects you wilt be delivered from many afflictions: you wilt plant your foot on the summit of the heavens.

1265. If the Demon called himself Solomon and won the kingdom and made the empire subject (to him),

(It was because) he had seen (and imitated) the form of Solomon's action; (but) within the form the spirit of demonry was appearing.
The people said, “This Solomon is without excellence: there are (great) differences between
(that) Solomon and (this) Solomon.”
He (the former) is like wakefulness, this one is like sleep; (there is as much difference) as between that Hasan and this Hasan.
The Demon would reply, “God has bestowed on Ahriman a pleasing form (aspect) in the likeness of me.

1270. God has given my aspect to the Devil: let him not cast you into his net!
If he appear with the pretence (that he is really I), beware! Do not have regard to his (outward)
form.”
The Demon was saying this to them from guile, but in good (enlightened) hearts the reverse of this was apparent.
There is no playing tricks with the discerning man, especially (with) him whose discernment and intelligence speak of the Unseen.
No magic and no imposture and fraud will bind a veil upon the owners of (spiritual) empire.

1275. Hence they were saying to themselves in reply (to the Demon), “You art going upside down, O you who art addressed falsely (by the name of Solomon).
Upside down likewise you wilt go Hellward, the lowest among the low.
If he (Solomon) has been deposed and reduced to poverty, (yet) the radiant full-moon is on his forehead.
If you have carried off the (royal) signet-ring, (yet) you art (as) a Hell frozen like (the region of)
piercing cold.
On account of (the Demon's) ostentation and vain show and pomp and grandeur how (should we lay) the head (in obeisance before him)? for we will not lay (before him) even a hoof.

1280. And if heedlessly we should lay the forehead (on the ground in homage) to him, a preventing hand will rise up from the earth,
(As though to say), Do not lay the head before this headlong-fallen one; beware, do not bow down to this ill-fated wretch!’”
I would have given a very soul-quickening exposition of this (story), were it not for the
indignation and jealousy of God.
Still, be content and accept this (insufficient) amount, that I may explain (the whole of) this at another time.
He (the Demon), having called himself by the name of the prophet Solomon, makes it a mask to deceive every (foolish) boy.

1285. Pass on from the (outward) form and rise beyond the name: flee from title and from name (and enter) into reality.
Inquire, then, about his (spiritual) degree and his (interior) actions: in the midst of his degree and actions seek (to discover) him.

How Solomon, on whom be peace, entered the Farther Mosque daily, after its completion, for the purpose of worshipping and directing the worshippers and devotees; and how medicinal herbs grew in the Mosque.

Every morning, when Solomon came and made supplication in the Farther Mosque.
He saw that a new plant had grown there; then he would say,Tell your name and use.
What medicine art thou? What art thou? What is your name? To whom art you hurtful and for whom is your usefulness?”

1290. Then every plant would tell its effect and name, sayingI am life to that one, and death to this one.
I am poison to this one, and sugar to that one: this is my name (inscribed) on the Tablet by (the pen of) the Divine decree.”
Then (by hearing) from Solomon about those plants the physicians became learned and wise authorities (on medicine),
So that they compiled medical books and were relieving the body from pain.
This astronomy and medicine is (knowledge given by) Divine inspiration to the prophets: where is the way for intellect and sense (to advance) towards that which is without (spatial) direction?

1295. The particular (individual) intellect is not the intellect (capable) of production: it is only the receiver of science and is in need (of teaching).
This intellect is capable of being taught and of apprehending, but (only) the man possessed of
Divine inspiration gives it the teaching (which it requires).
Assuredly, in their beginning, all trades (crafts and professions) were (derived) from Divine inspiration, but the intellect added (something) to them.
Consider whether this intellect of ours can learn any trade without a master.
Although it (the intellect) was hair-splitting (subtle and ingenious) in contrivance, no trade was subdued (brought under command) without a master.

1300. If knowledge of a trade were (derived) from this intellect, any trade would be acquired without a master.

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