Part 22 - How the vizier confused the ordinances of the Gospel

    463   He prepared a scroll in the name of (addressed to) each one, the (written) form of each scroll (of) a different tenor, 464   The ordinances of each (of) a diverse kind, this...

Part 22 - How the vizier confused the ordinances of the Gospel





He prepared a scroll in the name of (addressed to) each one, the (written) form of each scroll (of) a different tenor,



The ordinances of each (of) a diverse kind, this contradicting that from the end to the beginning.



In one he made the path of asceticism and hunger to be the basis of repentance and the condition (necessary) for conversion.



In one he said: “Asceticism profits naught: in this Way there is no place (means) of deliverance but generosity.”



In one he said: “Your hunger and generosity are (imply) association on your part (of other objects) with (Him who is) the object of your worship.



Excepting trust (in God) and complete resignation in sorrow and joy, all is a deceit and snare.”



In one he said: “It is incumbent (on you) to serve (God); else the thought of putting trust (in Him) is (a cause of) suspicion.”



In one he said: “There are (Divine) commands and prohibitions, (but they) are not for practice (observance): they are (only) to show our weakness (inability to fulfil them),



So that we may behold our weakness therein and at that time recognise the power of Him.”



In one he said: “Do not regard your weakness: that weakness is an act of ingratitude. Beware!



Regard your power, for this power is from Him: know that your power is the gift of Him who is Hú (the Absolute God).”



In one he said: “Leave both these (qualities) behind: whatsoever is contained in sight (regard for other than God) is an idol (something which involves dualism).”



In one he said: “Do not put out this candle (of sight), for this sight (perception) is like a candle (giving light) to the assembly.



When you relinquish sight and phantasy (too soon), you will have put out the candle of union at midnight.”



In one he said: “Put it out—have no fear—that you may see myriads of sights in exchange;



For by putting it out the candle of the spirit is increased: by your self-denial your Laylá (beloved) becomes your Majnún (lover).



If any one abandons the world by his own (act of) renunciation, the world comes to him (with homage) more and more.”



In one he said: “That which God hath given you He made sweet to you in (at the time of) bringing it into existence.



He made it easy (blessed) to you, and do you take it gladly: do not throw yourself into anguish.”



In one he said: “Let go all that belongs to self, for it is wrong and bad to comply with your nature.”



(Many) different roads have become easy (to follow): every one's religion has become (to him) as (dear) as life.



If God's making (religion) easy were the (right) road, every Jew and Zoroastrian would have knowledge of Him.



In one he said: “That (alone) is made easy (blessed) that (nothing but) spiritual food should be the life of the heart.”



When the enjoyments of the (sensual) nature are past, like brackish soil they raise no produce and crop.



The produce thereof is naught but penitence; the sale thereof yields only loss.



That is not “easy” in the end; its (true) name ultimately is “hard.”



Distinguish the hard from the easy: consider (what is) the goodliness of this and that in the end.



In one he said: “Seek a master (teacher): you will not find foresight as to the end among the qualities derived from ancestors.”



Every sort of religious sect foresaw the end (according to their own surmise): of necessity they fell captive to error.



To foresee the end is not (as simple as) a hand-loom; otherwise, how would there have been difference in religions?



In one he said: “You are the master, because you know the master.



Be a man and be not subject to men. Go, take your own head (choose your own way), and be not one whose head is turning (bewildered in search of a guide).”



In one he said: “All this (multiplicity) is one: whoever sees two is a squint-eyed manikin.”



In one he said: “How should a hundred be one? He who thinks this is surely mad.”



The doctrines, every one, are contrary to each other: how should they be one? Are poison and sugar one?



Until you pass beyond (the difference of) poison and sugar, how will you catch a scent from the garden of Unity?



Twelve scrolls of this style and fashion were drawn up in writing by that enemy to the religion of Jesus.

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