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(Masnavi Book 4: 35) The food of the Saints






Explaining that the gnostic has a nutriment (consisting) of the Light of God, for (the Prophet said), I pass the night with my Lord: He giveth me meat and drink”; and Hunger is God's food whereby He revives the bodies of the siddíqs, that is, in hunger God's food reaches (them).”

For every foal goes after its dam, so that thereby (the fact of) its being a congener becomes apparent.
The human creature's milk comes from the breast (the upper half); the milk of the ass comes from the under-half.
It is the Justice of the Dispenser, it is an act of (just) dispensation: the wonder is this, that (in the
Divine dispensation) there is neither compulsion nor injustice.
Were there compulsion, how would there be repentance? Were there injustice, how would there be protection?

1645. The day is ended: the lesson will be to-morrow: how should the day (of this life)
contain our mystery?
O you who have put firm confidence in the breath (vain words) and flattery of a scoundrel, You have raised up a tent of bubbles: in the end (you wilt find that) that tent has exceedingly
weak ropes.
Hypocrisy is like lightning, and in its gleam the travellers cannot see the way.
This world and its people are good-for-nothing: both are unanimous in respect of (their)
faithlessness.

1650. The son of the world (the worldling) is faithless like the world: though he turn the face towards you, that face is (really) the nape (back).
The people of that (other) world, like that world, on account of (their) probity continue for ever in (observance of their) covenant and promise.
When, in sooth, did two prophets oppose each other? When did they wrest (their) evidential miracles (spiritual powers and privileges) from one another?
How should the fruit of that world become stale? Intellectual joy does not turn into sorrows. The fleshly soul is unplighted (bound by no covenant); for that reason it ought to be killed: it is base, and base is the spot to which its desires are directed.

1655. This assembly (the world) is well-adapted for fleshly souls: the grave and shroud are suitable to the dead.
Although the fleshly soul is sagacious and acute, its qibla (objective) is this world, (therefore)
regard it as dead.
(But when) the water of God's inspiration has reached this dead (soul), the living (soul) comes into view (rises) from the tomb of a corpse.
Until inspiration comes, do not you (meanwhile) be duped by that rouge (vanity) of “May his life be long!”
Seek the applause and renown that does not die away, the splendour of the sun that does not
sink.

1660. Those abstruse sciences and disputations are (like) the people of Pharaoh: Death is like the water of the Nile.
Although their brilliance and pomp and show and enchantment drag the people along by the scruff of the neck,
Know that all (that) is (like) the enchantments of the magicians; know that Death is (like) the rod
(of Moses) which became a dragon.
It made one mouthful of all (their) sorceries. There was a world filled with night: the dawn devoured it.
The light is not made greater and more by that (act of) devouring; nay, it is just the same as it
has (always) been before.

1665. It is increased in respect of the effect (which it has produced), but not in respect of its essence: the essence has (suffers) no increase or diminution.
God was not increased by (His) bringing the world into existence: that which He was not formerly
He has not become now;
But the effect (phenomenal being) was increased by (His) bringing created things into existence:
there is (a great) difference between these two increases.
The increase of the effect is His manifestation, in order that His attributes and action may be made visible.
The increase of any (so-called) essence is a proof that it (the essence) is originated and subject to causes.

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