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OSMANIA UNIVERSITY LIBRARY
Gall No.

$-T

Accession No.

P-^-

Author Zh'tablMldis)

ruhrai*erdi
last

-ihvee -treatises
This book should be returned on or before the date

mark

THREE TREATISES ON
MYSTICISM
BY

SHIHABUDD1N SUHKAWKRDI

MAQTUL

with an account of his LiiV and Poetry

EDITED AND TRANSLATED

BY

Otto Spies and

S. 1C*

Khatak

1935.

MKMOK1AK MATKIS
SA< KITM.
1

CHAPTER
INTRODUCTION.
Shihabuddin Suhrawerdl

L
is

one of the outstandHe was iming mystic philosophers of the 6th century A.BL of heresy prisoned by the order of Salahuddln on a charge

Maqtul

either by starvation or strangulation by the son of Salahuddln, at Halab in the year Malik uz-Zahir, 587 A.H. People therefore called him "Shaykh Maqtul". It seems to us superfluous to give his biography here, as his life

and put

to

death

and works have already been studied by several
I have, moreover, given
in

scholars.

1

my

edition of

Suhrawerdfs

Mu'nis ul^Ushshaif an account of his life and works on the basis of such well-known biographical works of the Arabs as

have been so far printed.
c

Maulana Syed Sulayman Nadvi and

Professor Muhd. Shafi (Lahore), the former in his review of the book in Ma arif, Vol. 34, number 2, p. 155, Azamgarh 1934, and the latter in a private letter, have drawn my attfcn*
tiori

Nuzhat id-arwdh war-raudat, ul-afrah?. This biographical work contains a long and exhaustive biography of Suhrawardi with a detailed list of his works and poetry and is all the more important as Shahrazurl himself was an
to Shahrazurl's

"Ishraql".

The information given by him

is

more compre-

than that of Yaqut, Ibn Khallikari and Ibn abl Usaibi'a. Since this book is not yet published we consider it worth while to publish here in Chapter IX the Arabic text
hensive
of
I

Murdered ShaykhV biography. have made use of the following MSS.
the
:

u

For

the

edition

Brockelmarm, Gesch. d. Arab. Lit., Vol. I, 437; Muhammad of Metaphysics in London 1908, pp, Persia, 121-50; Encyclopaedia of Islam, s. v. Suhrawardi; L. Massignon, Becaeii de textes in^difcs, Paris 1929, p. Ill; M. Horten, Philosophic des Islam, Mtinchen 1924, pp. 120-26,
1.

Of.

Iqbal,

The Development

2. O. Spies, Studien, Nr. 7)

The Lovers' Friend, Delhi 1934 (Bonnet
I,

Orientalistische

3.

Cf.

Brockelmann, Vol.

468,

Berlin 10056 (Landsb. 480)/ copie|| 782/1 380, is, a fairly good copy denoted by B in tie list of th& variants.
1.

2.

Berlin 10055
it

5 (Mo 21 7)

the end are missing;
<jt*

is incomplete, four pages at ends with the words: abruptly

is not found in this Jj*^^ o* >r* So the part from vJjlU The MS,, copied ca 1100/1688, is completely dependent copy. on B and it is denoted here by C. Prof. P. Kahle in Bonn was kind enough as to provide me with the rotographs of this

^

MS. and the preceding one.
3.

MS

No. 990 of the Raghib Pasha Library

in Istanbul

is a very reliable copy which I was able to utilise through the kindness of Dr. H. Hitter who sent me the rotographs of it.

It

is

denoted by R.
4.

The

British

Museum manuscript Add.

Catal. manuscr.

Arab.
of

in the year 995 A.H. and contains a greater number of mistakes and misreadings by the scribe than the two MSS. B and C and I have denoted it by L.
5.

tirely the tradition

Mus. Brit., vol II, B and C. It was written

23,365 ( Cf. p. 602) follows en-

A
6

modern
is
it

transcription

Hyderabad

in the povssession of

MS. preserved in Maulana Sulayman Nadvi
of the

who kindly had

transcribed for me.

I desire here to express

in Hyderabad was copied an old MS. which was completed according to its colophon, on Ramadan, the 25th, 703 A.H. The copy from this MS. is denoted by S.

my

best thanks to

him

also.

The MS

in the

year 1029 A.H. from

Suhrawerdl is, besides Ibnnl- Arabl, one of the most remarkable exponents of the movement which attempted to
4

4.

Cf.

W.

Ahlwardt, Verzeichnisse der arab. MSS. in Berlin,
+

vol.

IX,

p.

460.
5.

Ibid.
Cf.

Vol. IX, P. 459
Pihrist-i

6

Kutub, Vol.

I, p.

212

;

333.

the
in

(j^tyMii

and the doctrines of Islam

to a great extent

His philosophical and an esoteric and allegorical way. his works on mystical ideas and teachings are reflected ii*
philosophy, mysticism, and metaphysics. Stihlrawerdi's princiu The pal and most characteristic work, Kitdb hikmat, ll-ishraq

well-known; and his philosophy call is livingupto this day in the order the followers of which l themselves "Ishraqlyun".

Philosophy of Illumination"

is

Professor L. Massignon has given a chronological classi2 and differentiates between fication of Suhrawerdl's works,

works of

his youth, of the Peripatetic period,
3

and the Avicenno-

Platonic period.

his youth reveal a struggle, between He was a Persian Iranian conceptions and Islamic doctrines. by birth and a Muslim by faith. So, on the one hand, he is the other, to his strongly attached to Iranian beliefs and on Arabian faith. His earlier writings, consequently, are an

The works

of his

philosophical ideas with Islam so much so that inspite 0f the storm and stress of youth he did not dare to pronounce^iiis doctrines publicly; and so he clothed

attempt

to reconcile

his

them

4 When he later on professed garb of allegory. his ideas boldly and at Aleppo he had to suffer death openly

in the

for his outspokenness.

three mystico-philosophical treatises which we edit translate, for the first time, in the following pages belong to the class of his works of youth Of this period besides his

The

and

Arabic works of which Hayakil un-nfir is the most important, Suhrawerdi has also some nice and original Persian treatises
Encyclopaedia of Islam, s.v. SuhrawardI; O. Spies, loc. cit., p. 18 2. Only 17 of his works are quoted there, a list containing 50 books, however, is given on the pages 101-102 of this book.
1.

Of.

3.

Cf. L.

Massignon, Textes inedits
allegories

etc., p.

113.
in

4.

These

are

the

oldest allegories

Persian

literature

known

so

far.

which have remained unnoticed and almost -unknown upto the present day. These treatises are as follows:
I.

Mu'nis ul-'Ushshaq
is

perhaps the most characteristic of these rasa'il. It is an allegory on the Quranic story of Joseph and contains also an original tract on microcosm in which the

"The Lovers' Friend"

metropolis of spirit; guarded by an Old-Youth (i.e. the Eternal Reason) is described at length It has been edited on the basis
of

MSS.
;

in

Constantinople by O.

Spies with

a Persian com-

and translated into French by Henry Corbin. 5 Another MS. of the same is preserved in Bankipore No. 2205, fol, 17a-25a in a manuscript, of mixed contents, dated 1238/39 A,H. Cf. Supplement to the Catalogue of the Pers. Mauuscr.,
mentary
Vol IL, Calcutta 1933,
p.

137.

II.

Lughat-i Miiran
is

u

The Language
consisting

of the Ants"

also an allegorical

com-

position

of

12 chapters wherein the

author has

explained delicate

mystico-philosophical theories in commonplace appealing terms. The first nine chapters are in the form of stories and the characters employed are birds and animals

which are made
here
is

to

are written rather in

speak and think. The last three chapters the form of aphorisms and the treatment

brief but bold.

The subject-matter
1.

of the 12 chapters

is

as follows:
is

Man

is

from divine origin and union with God

his ultimate goal.
2.

Man

should detach himself from the world and seek union with God
is

3.

Union

possible.

Pour 1' Anfchropologie Philosophique: Un traits Persan in&lit de 5. Suhmwerdi d'Alep (+119J), Eecherchea Philosophiques 1932-33, p. 371-423.

4.

God

is

Omniscient

;

and man must try

to

compre-

hend His
5.

qualities.

Comprehension

of

Divine

Qualities

is

possible

through self-purification
6.

and renunciation.

No one
to

can harm a sufi; and he enjoys the tortures
is

which he

subjected.

7.

To

save himself from troubles

the

sufi

should not

express all that is in his ken as only a few can understand those conceptions.
8.

One who

forgets

God

alone can guide him
9.

forgets everything, and back to the right path.

God

Divine favours are proportionate to human labours, and the utmost exertions are met with unbounded
munificence.

10.
11.

God

is

free

from

directions.
is

Self-mortification
tion.

the only road to

self-emancipa-

12.

God

alone will remain for ever;
of the

all else is

transitory.

Only one manuscript
is

"Language

of

the

Ants"

known which

is

4821, foil 88-97.

extant in Constantinople, Aya Sofya No. It was written in 677 A. H. This MS. of
also

mixed contents contains

other tracts
7

e.

g.,

SUHRAWERDI'S

Munis
Friend,

uI-<Vsh*haq,
p.

foil.

19);

AHMAD
Bitter,

The Lovers' (Cf. O. SPIES, tiL-GHAZALls SawTmih, foil. 97a
,

48a-59b

I24b.
p. 94)

(Cf.
etc.

H.

Pliilologica

VII,

Der Islam, Vol. XXI,

III.

Saflr4-Slmurgh
1 '

"The Note
into

of

Slmurgh
of

is

a mystical

tract.

It

is

divided

two parts

(gt'sm)

three chapters

(fasl)

each.

The

author describes
of

it

as

u a few sentences written about the states
calls
it

the

Brethren of Seclusion" and

"The Note

of

he introduces at length. The Slmurgh, here, stands for the sufi (sdlik) who has passed all the stages (maqamat) on the road (tarlqa} and reached the goal (fana fil-

Slmurgh"

whom

The author begins by saying, that, lie who renounces the world and gives up all wordly attachments and practices
sufistic exercises for

a certain time becomes a sufl and acquires

the various qualities which he next sets to enumerate.

In the

first

chapter of the
deals

first

Beginnings",
quisition

Suhrwerdi

with

part, entitled "About the the excellence of the ac-

knowledge of God (wa'rifa) and corroborates his reasonings by Quranic quotations; in the second chapter lie that appear to the gives an account of the Divine Lights In the third chapter he says that when Sufi and guide him. the Lights remain for a long time and do not pass away quickand describes the delights ly it is called "Tranquillity" (saklna)
of the

and attainments of the man who has attained "Tranquillity".
In the
first

chapter of the second part which

is

entitled

Suhrwerdi describes fana-i-akbar as the stage beyond "Tranquillity" in which the sufi becomes unconscious of himself, and/a/ia dar fana as the stage in which he becomes unconscious of the unconsciousness. He also enume-

"About the Ends"

rates the various unifications in connection

with

annihilation.

In

two the author explains the advantages of ma' r ifa warning us, however, against exposing and divulging the In the last chapter he deals with secret of "Predestination".
chapter
Affection (wuhabbafi and Relish (ladhdhat).
tion as imperfect,

He

regards affec-

and

relish as leading to perfection.

On

the whole,

we have adopted
fol.

the text of

our edition
it

from the manuscript Fatih 5426,

103a-108a replacing

in

some places by the Baukipore manuscript where text seemed to be more correct.

this

latter

the

A few grammatical and orthographical remarks about Sometimes the comparative is Fatih MS. 1 may be added.

for tfj^+tf .In such cases used for the superlative- e.y. we have retained the comparative form in the text, translating

j^^

however, by the superlative. The copyist does not differentiate between o and i and d and S] he also generally makes no distinction between ^ and ^ and ^ and The wadda above
it,
.

sometimes and that very rarein compound words is always written given instead. ly without the final In the plural e.g. <Cu- is written as csUi*. sometimes the orthography tfU^,- or >t*>ljT is found.
rt///'is

never given, but

ztibar is

.

,

fol.

a fairly modern copy but contains better readings sometimes. In the colophon, dated Tuesday the nth Dim '1-Hijja 1238 A. H., the scribe Imdad

lb

The second manuscript, extant -8b (Of. Suppl. Cat, p. 135) is

in

Bankipore No. 2203,

4

All says that

lie

transcribed the copy

by

the order of

Nawwab

Nur-ul-IIasan

Khan Bahadur.

The colophon runs thus:

J.

This MS. of mixed contents contain**

among

others al-Ghaz&ll's

hamaqat ahl al-ibuhat which
by

has meanwhile been edited and translated
Ghazfth

O

Hretzl, DieStreitschrift <les

geen
fol.

die Ibahlya,

Munchen

1933;

(not
fol.

seen):

Suhrawerdi's,

Pertevnamc,
fol.

52a

79a,

Hayakil

nn-nilr,

79b

Ola,

Mu'nis ul-llshshaq,

J9b

99a

(cf.

O. SpieR,

loc. cit, p.

20)

etc.
2.

This

mav

he an influence from Arabic.

8

*S

J^

5 "

AJ o/i S

4XJ1

.

.AC-

-^

W*

of Mr.

utilise this manuscript, through the kind offices Akhtar Imam, M.A. student of Arabic in the Syed Muslim University, who carefully collated our text with this

We

could

We manuscript. We thank him very much for his help denote the Bankipore manuscript by B while the Constantinople manuscript is denoted by A. In the list of the variants the
abbreviation

means

j

****

j?

IV.

Tarjuma

lisan

ul-haqq wa-huwa* risalat ut-tair.

The next
as the

belongs to just the same literary genre preceding treatises. The author calls it "Translation of
treatise

the language of

Truth and
(a)

this

is

The

Treaties of the Bird".

The

Treatise.

According to H Khal. Ill, p. 418 both Ibri Sina and al-Ghazall have composed Arabic treatises under the sa-me of Suhrawerdl. The title. TJ Klial. does riot mention that Arnbic text of Ibn Slna's treatise was edited by M.A.F. Mehren
with a French translation \

By a comparison
version
is

of the Arabic

and

Persian texts
identical

we come
that

to the conclusion that both

are

almost

and

the

Persian

translation of the Arabic text

more or less a although there are sometimes

additions or omissions in this text or that.

Trait6s Mystiques, 2 i&nae Fascicule, Leiden 1891. it was also published again in Vol. IV, page 772.
1.
ili,

Qamus, page 251,

^According " "Al-Mashriq

to

The authorship of Ibn Sin a is quite certain as his disciple l mention it, characal-Juzjan! and after him Ibn abi Usaibi'a "The treatise of the Bird, terising it in the following words an allegorical composition in which he described how he reached
:

the

knowledge of Truth".

Thus we have

here, as stated

by Suhrawordi

himself at

the very beginning, a

Persian translation of Ibn Slna'fi treatise
also mentions the Risalat nt-tair

by Suhrawerdl.

*

Shahrazun

us one of Suhrawerdl's works. Cf. p. 102, No. 31 of this book.

a small allegory that hints at the worldly distractions that face, and the impediments that are

The

treatise itself

is

to

l)e

surmounted by the mystic
story as a bird.

traveller

who

is

represented

in the

some hunters netted a Hock of birds in which he was flying, and considered his bondage and imprisonment congenial until one day he saw his other companions free and about to fly, but still having a strip of the bonds on their legs. After some incipient refusal they assisted in setting him free. But they could not remove from his

The Bird

relates

3

that

they also wore, After a long over seven mountains they came to the eighth where flight there was the "King" whom they informed about their conleg the remaining strap which

and who expressed his readiness to help them in unfettering the remaining bonds. He, therefore, sent with them a messenger for the execution of that task.
dition

page 19. Suhrawerdi, on the other hand, has composed another tract quite similar to Ibn Slna's nsalat at- (air which is entitled al-ghurbat al-ghariba. It has always l)een mentioned among the works of the murdered Shaykh Refer H. Khal. Ill, 310; Yaqflt Vlf, 270; Mir'at al-janto III, 485; and p. 102, No. 27 of thia book. Four manuscripts of it are extant in Constantinople; cf. Spies, Mu'ms ul-'UshitfAq, page 13. The edition and translation of this text
2. is

1.

ed. A. Midler, Vol. II,

under preparation.
3.

Cf.

also the statement of its

contents given by Mehren,

Inc. cit.,

pp. 25-26.

10

The

edition of the text
foil

is

based on the same manuscript

Although written by the same hand as Sajir-i Siww'f/h the copy of risalat \it-tair is full (if mistakes of the copyist which have been corrected in the footFatih 5426,

99b

I02a.

notes.

Other MSB. of
(b)

it

are not known.

The author
SAHLAN IJH-SAWAJI
.

of

philosopher of the mentator is the author of Rixal(it-ux-sanj<triyu fi L'u'indt H^UHSHny<* (et II. Khal. III. 412; and T<inkh Isbaluin cf II. Klial II,
1 .
(

The Commentary. Persian commentary is *()MAK B. He lived at Nfshapur and was an eminent time of Malak Shah Saljuql. 2 The comthe
*

108).

4

Omar
Tbn

b. Sahliin

3

supported himself bv selling his transJ4
.

cripts of

Slufi's (ish-fihif((
is

There

only one manuscript of
extnnt
in

known.
(Jaital.

It is

the British

commentary so far Museum, and described in
this
Brit.,

("odd.

Manuscr.
thought
it

Arab.

Mus.
to

Vol. II, p.
this

450

No.

2(>.

Wo
has

desirable

edit

commentary
it

along* with the

Persian text

and

to desist

from

translating*

since

it

been

utilised to a

certain extent

by

the

French

translator.

V.
"TJiK

Par-i Jibrk'il.
is

WING OF UAIWTKL"

the

next of
5

these treatises

which

( -OKIUN shortly be edited by II. 6 in the ''Jiwrnnl Asiatiqne." It Commentary

will

with a Persian
is

therefore not

1.

Cf.

2.

Or

Brookelmann, Vol, I. p. 456, No. 44; Mehren, loc. cit., p. 25. of Sultan San jar (512-548 A.H ) Cf. Br. IMus. Cat. of Pers.

MSB., Vol.
3.

11, 489.

For the author's nisbn

cf.

YaqiU, Mn'jan^erl. WAstenfeld,

Vol. Ill, p. 24.

In Fl&gel'R edition of H. Khal. in the Constantinople edition Ahdkttlah;
Shcthlan.
4.

II,
I,

108 read '0 mar instead

of

217 read Sahldn instead of

Cf. Suppl. Pers.

MSS.

in the British

Museum,

p.

1087h.

5.

We learn this

from a personal

letter to Prof. O. Spies.

6. Rotographs of the commentary were sent to him by O. Spies as he had times expressed his desire several times to edit it jointly with O. Spies.

11

necessary to go into the details although we have carefully studied it. Besides the manuscript in Constantinople, Ay a Sofya 4821 another manuscript is extant in Bankipore, No. 2206,
l

a

fol

25b-31a.

It

is

entitled

here

u

Bayan-iawaz-i

par-i

Jibra'il"

There are some more
manuscripts T Shahrazun's A ?/?/w<
are

rasa'il

of this

kind of which no

known

to

us

ul-nnrali.

HO far; they are mentioned in Of. p. 102 of this book.
of his philosophy and, parti-

Suhrawerdl's works are
cularly, his

full

philosophical
treatises.

ideas

are

scattered

about

in

the

accompanying

Although
find

the ideas are not systemto

atically developed, yet

we

ample material

work upon.

The various aspects of philosophy, ontology, cosmology and psychology can be expounded with the help of his writings. We do not propose here to deal with them in detail 3 as a
separate paper on Suhrawerdl's philosophy according to the texts edited here will be published in the next volume of the u Journal of the. Bombay Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society/'

As regards the translation it lias been our endeavour to a literal translation as far as possible, but at times we give could not help translating freely. The quotations from the

Holy Quran are given according to the translation of MARMADUKE PICKTHALL, The Meaning of The Glorious Koran, London 1930. In the list of the variants to the texts * means ^ **y*ysl Other abbreviations are given in the first chapter or where the book is quoted for the first time.

1.

Of.

O. Spies, Mu'nis,
Suppl. Catal.,
p.

p, 19,

2.

Cf.

137.

3.

Dr,
"

Mohammad

Iqbal has dealt with
of

them
in

in general in

his

book

The Development

metaphysics

Persia,"

London 1908,

pp. J 20-150.

12

Onr
tinople

best thanks are

due

to Dr.

H.

RITTKR in Constan-

for sending
ZIA-I

served

there, to Messrs.

us certain rotographs of manuscripts preABDUL Aziz MEMON (Arabic Depart-

ment) and

AHMAD Badauni
and
to

(Persian

Department; for

some

useful

suggestions,

NAWWAB MUHAMMAD ISMAIL

Acting Vice-Chancellor of the Muslim University, for providing a part of the funds for publication.

KHAN, the

CHAPTER
TRANSLATION
OF THK

II.

-LANGUAGE OF THE ANTS"
o
the name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate! Lord increase my knowledge. In
Praise be to the originator of
entirety
all, for,

in reality, all

the
all

deserves

to
is

the existant things

acknowledge that the existence of due to witnessing the "essence.
be

And
offspring

benedictions
the

Muhammad
One

chosen

Lord of mankind, peace of God be upon him, his

upon

the

and

their souls.

of the dear friends

who was favourably

inclined

towards this frail being requested me. I will write a few sentences pointing out the procedure, provided he withholds

them from incapable persons if it pleases God. They are called "Language of the Ants" and success is with God.
K ONK.

of

and loin-girded ants came out of the depth the darkness of their ambush and their prior abode and
few
fleet

A

made

arrange for their victuals. chance, some shoota of vegetation came into the region By of their observation. In the morning time drops of dew

for the desert in order to

had settled on the sides of their surfaces. One [of them] asked another: "What is this ?" Some said: "The source ol these drops is the earth." Others said: "They are from
the

14

manner a controversy arose. A dextrous ant amongst them said: "Wait for a moment [to see] which way
In this

every one lias an attraction towards the side origin and an inclination for adhesion to its mine and source. All things are drawn towards their choice. Don't you see that a clod of earth is thrown towards the
is it

inclined, for

of

its

surroundings, but since its origin is a stone, and since the rule of U A11 things return to their origin" js well-laid, the clod
finally

comes down.

Whatever
its
is

also

that [darkness] for

retreats to pure darkness has source. And on the side of the

more evident with regard to a, noble essence, God forbid any supposition of a union. Whatever seeks light is also from light.
light of Divinity this fact
7 '

The ants were in this (discussion) when the sun grew warm and the dew began to rise from the face of the vegeThe ants, [then), camo to know that it did not tation.
belong to the earth;
the
air.
it

went

to the

air as

it

belonged

to

whom He will;

"Light upon light; and Allah speaketh

Allah guideth
to

unto this

light
1

mankind
4

in allegories.'

1

"And that thy Lord, He is the goal."'- 'l T nto words ascend, and the pious deed doth lie exalt."
(JllAlTKR

Him good
1

*

Two.
At a certain

Some
time
tion,

turtles

had a nest on the shore.

they

A

were gazing upon the sea by way of recreaspeckled bird was playing on the surface of the
ha.bit of the birds.

water after the

Sometimes
u

it

dived and

ls this agreesometimes it emerged. One of them asked: Another said: "If it had not able form watery or airy ?" been watery, what had it to do with water." A third one "If it is watery it cannot live without water." said:

1.

2.
8,

Quran XXIV, 36. Quran LIU, 43. Quran XXXV, ii.

15

The
wise:
live

"Observe

Q&dt, a sincere judge, decided the matter iu this it and look after its affaire If it can
!

without water

it is

water.

The proof
its life

neither watery nor is it of this is the fish that when
1

in
it

need of

leaves the

water
arose

cannot continue.'
the

Suddenly a

strong'

wind

and

stirred
air.

water.

The

small bird

took to the
satisfaction

height of the

They

said to the judge:

"Our

needs an explanation."

The judge quoting

may
God
4

(Joel

sanctify

the saying of Abft T&lib his soul about our Prophet
in

Makkl

1

chapter "Kxtasy he puts it on, it removes the order of the [namely): u u aql from him and so the Kaun" and makft,n" is taken away n kk from him", said; lu the state of extasy the a mak&n was taken 2 away from the Prophet," and that he says about Hasan -i

be upon him

the

Peace of and Fear"

"When

S&lilv*

in

the
u

Khulla:"*
is

u chapter "Affection" regarding the maq&m-i The vision appears to him and then the "inak&n"
for him."

rolled

up

amongst

the veils of

the great men consider passions intellect and the body as the place.

And

Ifusain b. Mansftrsays regarding the Chosen peace be upon u him: He shut the eyes out of kindness." lie also says: "The All are Sufi is beyond the beings and above the worlds."

agreed that so long as the veils are not removed observation cannot be acquired. This essence which comes into observation
is

created and produced. 5

All the turtles cried out:

"How

can an
it

essence relating

to place
1.

go out of the place and how can

break
life

off

from

Ahi\ Talih
in

Muhammad
;

h

'All

al-Makkt led the

of

an ascetic and

wa'iz

;

he lived

Cf. Brockelinami
p.

602

;

Mekka, Basra and Bagdad where he died in 380 or 386. 200 Tarlkh Baghdad, Vol. Ill, page 89 Ihn Khailikan Nafahatul-Un-; p. 135 Massignon, Laxique, Index, p. 291.
1,
;
;

2.

/.

r.

Aha
the

Tj\li)>

MiUt.
His in
al-BisrJ.

3.

The famous
/.

ascetic

4.
p. 177;

P.

nt

#e of "Divine

Friendship."

Cf.

Ma**iguon,

Lexique,

195.

16

the [six] directions?"

story at this cried out: "We have dismissed you; you are dismissed" and threw dust on him and retired to their nest

replied: "I too related this length for this very purpose." The turtles

The judge

CHAFFER THRKE.
All the birds

were present

in

the

peace

be

upon

him

except

the

SolomonSolomon nightingale.
court of

u appointed a bird as a messenger to tell the nightingale it is necessary for us to meet each other." When the nightingale
received the message of Solomon had not come out of his nest
u

peace be upon him

he

He turned
tell lies.

to

his friends

[saying]
is

The command
If

of

Solomon

peace be upon him

in this

manner and he does not
he
is

an assembling.
is

not possible inside;
is

promised and meeting outside, #n assembling and our nest cannot hold him; and
1

He

lias

there

no other way/ There was an aged one among them. He said "If the 1 promise of "The day when they shall meet Him" be right and the declaration of "All will he brought before Us"- and "Unto Us is their return" "Firmly established in the favour of a Mighty King" 4 comes true, the way is this: since our nest cannot hold King Solomon we should also leave the nest, and go to him, else meeting will not be possible. Junayd mercy of God be upon him was asked: "What is Tasawwuf?" He recited this verse:
:
:

*

"He sang to me wholeheartedly, and I also sang as he did, And we were wherever they were, and they were
wherever we were."

1.

8.
4.

Quran Quntn Quran Quran

XXXIII,

48.

XXXVI, 32. LXXXVIII,
LIT,
55.

17

CHAITKK

Forrra.

Kaikhusraw had a world-displaying cup. Whatever he He saw the universe and liked he could inspect there. became informed of concealed things. It had been made by a slave, out of leather, in the form of a cone. He had placed thereon an opening and closing mechanism. When lie wanted to see one of the concealed things he opened the

When he had opened all fastenings it did not come When he had closed all it came out of the turning instrument. When the sun was on head, he placed that cup When the light of the sun fell on it all drawings against it.
cover.
out.

and
is

lines of the world

appeared there. "And when the earth
!

spread out and hath cast out all that was in her, and is empty and attentive to her Lord in fear Thou, verily,

hidden.""2 U A soul will

man, working toward thy Lord a work which thou u Not a secret of wilt meet (in His Presence). you will^ be
()

art

1 '

1

know what
I

it

hath sent beforO,

it

and

what

left

behind."

:

*

'erse:

"When
I

I

heard from

my

master the description of
the cup of

Jem

was myself the world-displaying cup
r
I

of

Jem

?>
.

erse

:

"They talk of the world-displaying cup, Our woollen cloth is that old buried cup/'
This
shine
is

from Junayd:"

"The nightly

flashes of light

when they appear."
CHAPTER FIVE.

Someone became
Jinns.
1.

He
Quran

friendly with one of the said to him: "How can I see you?"

kings of the

He

replied:

LXXXIV, 36.

2.

3.

Quran LXFX, 18. Quran LXXXII, />.

18

frankincense in fire

have the advantage of seeing* us put some and throw away all the pieces of iron that are in the house; and of the seven metals, all that And reproduce noise and sound. "Pollution shun!" 1 move everything that has noise in stability and companion"Then bear with them and say Peace!""- Then look ship.
"If
to
:

you want

2

out of the

window

after having- sat in a circle <=
'

and havinoO
is

burned frankincense. You
similitude." 3

will see

me; for others "it
replied:

an evil
the

They asked Junayd
is

may God have mercy on
"They
are

him:

"What

Tasawwuf?" He

people of a

house which nobody except them enters.'' Khwaja Abft Sa'ld Kharr&z 4 may God have mercy on him said:

"My

qualities rose for the sovereign altogether,

My
*

qualities disappeared

when you disappeared from

the prison,

And he disappeared on whose account was my
absence,

So

this

was
lie

my annihilation,

understand,

O

people of

senses."

In reply to one
"I

am

says the verse: perplexed and I do not

know on account

of

am, what people say about me and Except
perplexity
nions."
of the great men says: cast out the obstacles so that

my

who

I

my

compa-

One

"Cut

off

the

attachments

and

you witness

the

Lord

of the

1.

2. 3.

4.

Quran LXXIV, 5. Quran XLIIJ, 8. Quran XVI, 62. AM, Said Ahmad
in

b,

*Isft

al-Kharrdz,

born

in

Bagdad

died

in

286 A. H.-899 A. D. For his life of Tfcrtkh Baghdad, Vol. IV 276; Shadh&rat II 192; his doctrine is developed by Massignon, Lexique p. 270-73 Selections from his sayings Massignon, Textes .technique, p.
Cairo
; :

in&dits p. 42.

19
creatures."

He

said:

"When we

did so and fulfilled

all

the

conditions:"

and

it is

"the earth shine th with the light of her Lord, judged between them with truth" 1 and it is said,

"Praise be to Allah, Lord of the worlds. Peace be upon those meeting-places, verily they are the path of my approach to

water and the channel of

my

north wind."
Six.

CHAPTER

At a certain time, some bats turned hostile towards a chameleon and the animosity between them became violent. The controversy between them transgressed the limit. The
bats decided that
the darkness of the night is diffused over the surface of the firmament and the sun goes into the

when

enclosure of sunset, they will gather and make an attempt against the chameleon and will take the chameleon captive like warriors in order to punish it according to their heart's
desire

and

to kill

time at their

by the way of vengeance. When the disposal came to an end they came out and dragit

ged the poor chameleon to their house of adversity by assistThey kept it captive for that ing and helping one another.

mode of All agreed on killing it. Then punishing this consulted one another about the manner, and came to they
night.

In the

morning they chameleon?"
is

said:

"What

is

the

the conclusion that there

no punishment worse than look-

ing at the sun. Altogether, in analogy of their own conditions, they did not regard any punishment worse than association
with the sun.

They
heart

terrified

it

of looking
of

at the sun.

The

chameleon
desired ?n
says:

itself

wished that of God.
this

The poor chameleon
Husain-i

its

sort

death.

Mansftr

"Kill me,

()

My
1.

life is

my confidants; killing me is my life, my death and my death is my life,"
*

Quran XXIX,

69.

20
they threw it out of their house of misfortune, in order that it may be tortured by the rays
the sim arose
of the sun, and that torture was its vivification and "Think not of those, who are slain in the way of Allah, as dead.

When

Lord they have provision; jubilant [are they] because of that which Allah hath bestowed upon them of His bounty/ 1
Nay, they are
living.

With

their

1

If

the bats

to

the

knew how much kindness they had done chameleon by that punishment and what defect
its

they have by loss of
of anger.

pleasure they would

have died out

AbA Sulaim&n
knew what

of

Dftr&n

2

says:

"If

the

heedless

pleasures of the gnostic die out of sadness."

they lack, they would

CHAPTER SEVEN.

Once a hoopoo on
nest. alighted in their

way, fell amongst the fairies, and 'The hoopoo is known for extreme
his
fairies

keen-sighteclness.
their states
is

are purblind; as the story of well-known to the Arabs. The hoopoo passed

The

the night in their nest

and they asked

all sorts

of

news from

him.
In the morning the

hoopoo

prepared
UO

to

depart and

decided to leave.

The

fairies said:

wretch,

what

is

this

novelty that you have introduced?

Do

they travel in the

1.

Quran
Abft

III, 163.

b. 'Atiyah ad-Daranl, disciple of Textes p. 5), was born in the year 140 .'Ahdalw&feid b. Zaid (cf. Massignon, He left his native place about 180 and settled down at A, H. in Wasit. 2.

Sulaiman

'Ahdarrahman

His A, H. Daraya, in the plain of Damascus, where he died in 215 the works of his master, Disciple was Ahmad b. abi'l-HawwarS who edited
Cf.

Massignon, Lexique

p.

197 sqq.

21

day?"

The hoopoo movements are done

replied:
in the

"This

is

a strange thing;

all

haps you are mad. How day when the sun becomes dark?" He answered: "It is just You have all the lights of this world through the opposite. All the luminous objects obtain light the light of the sun.

day." The fairies said: "Percan anyone see a thing in the dark

and acquire brilliancy from
because
it is

it.

They

call

it

"eye of the sun,"

the source of light."
(to explain)

They compelled him
thing
in

how anyone can

see

a

the day. He said: "In imagining things we connect them with ourselves. All persons see in the day and behold, I am seeing. I am in the world of observation. To my eyes the veils are removed. In spite of my doubts
I

perceive brilliant surfaces by

way

of revelation."

on hearing this story, forthwith began to lament and raised a tumult and said to one another: "This
fairies,

The

bird asserts perspicacity in the day when there is a presumption of blindness." They immediately attacked the eyes of

the

hoopoo with their beaks and claws and abused him and him "one who can see in the day" because purblindness was a virtue to them. They said: "If you do not recalled

pent there is fear of your death." The hoopoo thought: "If I do not withdraw they will kill me because mostly they wound the eye; and death and blindness will occur simultaneously."

He

according

to their intelligence."
I
7

received the inspiration "Speak to the people He immediately closed his

eyes and said, "Here!

have also attained to your state and

become

blind.'

When

they found things to be thus, they refrained from

beating and charging.

The hoopoo came

to

know

that

the

proposition, "To divulge th'e Divine secret is unbelief, to divulge the secret of predestination is rebellion, and to

publish a secret

is

unbelief"

is

current

amongst the

faries.

22

Upto
with great

the time of departure he used to pretend blindness
difficulties

and used

to say:
I will

"Many a

time have I said that

Whatever

divulge, secrets there are in the world.

But out of fear of the sword and slaps on the neck There are a thousand ties on my tongue."

He was
house of
for
it

distressed in himself

and said
in

:

"Verily in the
if

my

friend

is

knowledge

a great amount,
is

I find

those

who

will take it."

"If the veil

belief will not

be increased"

arid the

verse

removed, my "So that they

worship not Allah Who bririgeth forth the hidden in the heavens and the earth." 1 "And there is not a thing but with Us are the stores thereof; and We send it not down save in
2 appointed measure."

CHAPTER KIWIT.

A
basils,

king had a garden which was
verdure,

never without sweet

and

places of

seasons.

Great streams were

pleasure, in all the four running there and many
sorts

varieties of birds

produced

different

of

tones on the

Every tune that could come to the mind and every beauty that could come to the imagination was available in that garden. Of all that, there was a numsides of the branches.

ber of peacocks with extreme gentleness, beauty lind grace, that lived and resided there.

One day
ordered him

the king caught a peacock out of them and to be sewn in leather so that no colour of his

feathers remained visible.

however much

he tried.

could not observe his beauty According to his (king's) order a

He

basket was placed over him in the garden which had not but

1.

2.

Quran XXVH, Quran XV, 27,

25,

23

one hole through which they put a
victuals

little

millet for the sake of

and provision of

his livelihood.

Times passed. This peacock forgot himself, the kingdom, the garden and the other peacocks. He looked at himself and could not see anything except the dirty and wretched leather and a very dark and uneven habitation. Pie made up with that, and confirmed in his mind that there can be no land larger than the base of the basket. So that he firmly believed that if anyone contends a pleasure and a dwelling and a perfection beyond this, it will be absolute heresy, complete blunder and pure ignorance. But, whenever a wind blew and he received the smells of flowers, trees, roses, violets, jessamines and varieties of basils through that hole lie found a strange pleasure. A commotion appeared in him and he experienced the delight of flight. And he felt a desire in him, but lie did not know where the desire came from, because he considered himself no other than the leather, and the world no other tlum the basket, and the food no other than the millet. He had forgotten everything.
the notes and sounds and the tunes of the other birds, his desire peacocks and inclination became manifest, but he did not become aware through the sounds of the birds and the blowing of the morning bieeze. One day he was enjoying these:
also,

And

when he sometimes heard

of the

"There came
I

to

me

the morning breeze almost saying:

am

a messenger to

you from

the friends."

For a long time he remained meditating what that sweet smelling wind was and where those melodious sounds came from.
UO
lightning that flashes, From what sides of the enclosure do

you spread?"

24
could not understand while at those "times" a happiness involuntarily appeared in him.

He

Ah,

if

but Lail4 once would send
of

me a

down

grace, though between us lay dust, and the flags of stone,

greeting the

My

greeting of joy should spring in answer, or there should cry toward her an owl, ill bird that shrieks in the gloom of graves! 1

This ignorance of his was due to his having forgotten
himself and his country.

"They

caused them

to

2 forget their souls."

forgot Allah, therefore He Every time when a
desire

wind or a sound came from the garden he felt a without discerning its cause or knowing its reason.

"The lightning
It

of

Ma'arra travelled after
at

the

middle of the night,
passed
the

night

K&ma^

describing

its

weariness,
It

deeply grieved
increased
saddles."*

riders, horses
it

And

till

and came,ls was about to grieve the

He remained in that perplexity for many days, till one the king ordered: "Bring the bird and set it free from the day "There is but one shout 5 and lo ! basket and the leather."

1.

These verses, taken from the Ham&sa,
is

figure in
of

the fimous tale

which

told of

the death of

LaiLX,

the beloved
J.

Tmbah, son
Ancient

of

al-Humaiyir.
Poetry,
2.
3.

Cf.

the translation
76.

by Ch.

Lyall,

Arabian

London 1885, p. Quran LIX, 20.

Name

of a place.

1

W& 4. "From the beginning of Siqt ttz-zand by Cf. Shark at~tanwtr 'aid siqt az-zand, Cairo 1303,
5,

Abu
p. 23.

'l-'Ala,

al-Ma'arri.

Quran XXVII,

19."

25

from the graves they hie unto their Lord." * "When the contents of the graves are poured forth and the secrets of the breasts are made known, on that day will their Lord be
perfectly informed concerning them."
2

the veils he saw, himself in the garden, and his colours, and the garden, and the flowers, and the figures, and the expanse of the world,
the peacock
of

When

came out

and

the ability of walking tunes of other birds. He

state of affairs

and

felt

unmindful
44

" of Allah; 8

and flying, and the sounds and remained astonished about the "Alas, my grief that I was regret. now We have removed from "And

and piercing is thy sight this day." 4 Why, then, when [the soul] cometh upto the throat [of the dying] and ye are at that moment, looking; and We re nearer unto him than ye are, but ye see not" 6 "Nay, but ye 6 will come to know! Nay, but ye will come to know!"
thee thy covering,

CHATTER NINE.
All the stars arid constellations spoke to Idrls peace be He asked the moon: "Why does your light him. upon

decrease sometimes and increase at others?''

She

replied:

"Know you
and
in
I

body is have no light. But when
!

that

my

black, but polished and clear
I

am

opposite to the sun,

7 proportion to the opposition an amount of his light appears in the mirror of my body; as the figures of the other bodies appear in the mirror. When I come to the

1.

2. 3.

4. 5. 6. 7.

Quran XXVI, 51. Quran C, 9-11. Quran XXXIX, 57. Quran L, 27. Quran LVI, 82. Quran Oil, 3-4. Of. mathalu mlrihi in Quran XXVI,

35.

26

utmost encountering

I

progress from the nadir of the
the full

new
from

moon
her:

to the zenith of

moon.

Idris inquired

"How much is his friendship with you?" She replied: "To such an extent that whenever I look at myself at the
of

time

encountering I see the sun because image of the sunlight is manifest in me, since all the smoothness of

surface and the polish of my face is fixed for accepting his light. So, every time when I look at myself I see the Do you not see that if a mirror is placed before the sun.

my

sun the figure of the sun appears in it? If by Divine decree the mirror had eyes and looked at itself when it is before the sun, it would not have seen but the sun, in spite of its being It would have said: "I am the sun," because it would iron.
not have seen

anything except the sun. If it says: How great is my "I am the Truth" or "Glory be to me! 1 its excuse must be accepted; even the blasphemy glory" u wherefrom I came near, verily, you are me."
in itself

CHAPTKK TKN.

For one who
tions he
is

lives in a house,

if

the
is

house
also

is

in

direc-

also in directions.

This

necessitated on

the negative side in this way: "He vacated a house for me, who am one of the broken-hearted." God is free from

place and direction.

The supposition

of

the

rescinders

is

wrong, namely, "Firmness of resolution conies proportionand everyately to the people endowed with resolution," is as thing of the house resembles the landlord. "Naught
His likeness; and He is the Hearer, the Seer."'2 the house and the landlord be one. 3
1.

Never can

2. 8.

For the explanation Quran XLII, 9.
This
is

of

"subh&nf'see Massignon, Lexique,

p.

249 sqq.

a very condensed chapter.

Many
in

lor granted.

It, therefore,

seems necessary to trace the development
is

things have been taken of the

ideas of the author.

This chapter

written

refutation of

those

confine

God

to directions.

They

say that

it is

the knowledge of

who God and

27

CHAPTER ELEVEN,

Whatever
veil of the

is

useful and

good

is

bad;

whatever

is

the

is the unbelief of men. To be satisfied with what it acquires and to make up with that is a through weakness in the path of the [mystical] travelling and to be pleased with oneself is vanity, although it is on account of

way

self

Truth.

To

turn the face towards

God

entirely

is

liberation.

CHAPTER TWELVE.
U O placed a light before the sun and said: " She replied: mother, the sun has made our light invisible. "If it is taken out of the house, especially near the sun,

A

fool

nothing will remain. Then the light arid its brilliancy will vanish/' But when one sees a big thing he considers a small

one contemptible in comparison with that. One who enters a house from the sunshine cannot see anything although it "Everyone that is thereon (the house) is illuminated. will pass away; there remaineth but the countenance of thy Lord of Might and Glory/ 1 u Is not everything except
7

God

in

vain ?"

2

"He

is

the

First
is

and the Last, and the

Outward and

the Inward;

and He

Knower
In

of all things." 8

not

God Himself

th\t

is

present everywhere.

fact,

they have assigned

Him
God

a definite place, the 'arsh. The author meets their arguments by saying: does not live in a place, and He is therefore not in directions, because
is

he \vho lives in a house

in directions, since the

house

is in

directions.

He

also proves this by a neg itive proof according to

^

<-*

>*.

He

further

negates their contention of "Everything of the house resembles the landlord" and which is based on r> Jl JAl a* Jf by quoting the Quranic verse*^ concludes that the house and the master of the house are not one from
->

^^

which
1.

it

follows by inference

thitGod

is free

from place and direction.

Quran LV, 26-27.
;

From Labid cf. A. Huber, Der Leiden 1891, p. 28. mann,
2.
3.

1)1

wan

des Libid, ed. C. Brockel-

Quran LVlf,

3.

CHAPfER

III.

TRANSLATION
OF THE

NOTE OFSIMURGH
God, the Merciful, the Compassionate. With Him is might and strength. Praise be to the Bestower of life and the Creator of 11 existing things and blessing be upon the masters of Prophecy and the leaders of prophetic appearance, upon the Master of the great Sharl'a and the Guide of the exainplary path, Muhammad, the Chosen Peace and benediction be upon
of

In the

name

him.

Now to begin These are a few sentences written about the states of the Brethren of Seclusion. And the
:

description thereof is limited to two parts: the first part is about the Beginnings and tJte second part about the Ends. This treatise is known as u The Note of Simurgh^ who And if at the outset we were to give an has no tongue.

introduction about the state
bird

and

his

anyone who

respectable residence: the bright-minded have shown that 2 goes to the Mountain of Q&f in the spring

of

affairs

of

this

season and renounces his nest and plucks off his feathers with his beak 3 when the shadow of the Mountain of Q&f
1.

For Simurgh

cf.

2.

Cf. Encycl. of

Encyclopaedia of Islam s.v. Simurgh. Islam s.v. Qaf and Hibbatuddin ash-Shahr&st&nf,

Jabal Qaf, Baghdad 1346.
3.

Cf.

Mathnawi

of Jal&luddin

BUmi, Books

V

and VI

(Text),

ed.

by E. A. Nicholson, pp. 36-37.
l/T *

29

on him for a space of ajhousand years of the time 1 "Verily a day with your Lord is like a thousand years"
falls

and these thousand years are in the eyes of the People of realm in Reality like a dawn from the East of the Divine this time he becomes a Simurgh whose note awakens the His residence is in the Mountain of Q&f. His note sleepers. reaches all; but it has few hearers. 2 All are with him and the
majority are without him
3
;

as the poet says

:

"You You

are with us, but not ours, are the soul and are therefore invisible."

And
and
it

his

shadow

is

the cure for the sufferers

who

are en-

tangled in the whirlpool of the diseases of
avails leprosy

dropsy and atrophy,
afflictions.

and removes various

This

Simurgh flies without moving, soars without comes near without traversing distance.

travelling,

and

But know you, that all colours are in him but he is colourless; and his nest is in the East and the West is [also] not devoid of him. All are occupied with him and he is All are filled with him, and he is empty of free from all.
all.

emanate from the note of that bird. Wonderful musical instruments like the organ and others have been derived from the sound of that bird; as the poet
all

And

sciences

says

:

"Since you have not even seen Solomon, How can you know the language of birds? "

His food
feathers on
1.

is fire, 4

If

one

ties

a feather out of those
fire,

his

right
46,

arm and walks over

one

will

be

Quran XXII,
i.e. it is

2.

heard by a few,
I,

3.
4.

Ot
Cf.

St.

John

10-11.

Khaq&nl, British

Museum MS. No, add

25018, foL 9a.

30
proof against
his
fire. 1

And

the

morning breeze comes from
tell it

breath, therefore hearts and minds.

the

lovers

the secrets of their

And

all

what is in and his note,

been written here is concealed from the breast; a part of it is a brief account of him
that has

First Part about the Beginnings

and

it

has three

Chapters.
Chapter one on the excellence of this science. Chapter two on what appears to the Ahl-i-13aday&.
Chapter three on Tranquillity.

Second
Chapters.

Part

about

the

Ends and

it

has three

Chapter one on Annihilation.
Chapter two on

The more learned one

is

the

more

perfect he

is

relish towards Chapter three on The affirmation of man's Truth.

the

PART ONE ABOUT THE BEGINNINGS
CHAPTER ONE

ON THE EXCELLENCE
Be
it

OF THIS SCIENCE OVER ALL OTHER SCIENCES.
to

not

unknown

preference of a science to reasons. Firstly, the "known" should be nobler,
is

the that the light-hearted several due to others is
e.

g.

because pack-saddle-craft preferable smithship other with wood and wool. deals with gold and this
to
;

goldthat

Secondly, because the arguments of stronger than those of any other science.
1.

this science are

Islam s.v. Slmurgh s.v. and O. Spies in wroerfcedbuch des deutschen Maerchens, herg von L. Mackeusen, Vol.
Of. Encycl. of

"

Hand-

II,

p,7L

31
Thirdly, because

occupation therein should be more

momentous and

its

advantage greater.

comparison to other sciences alLthe signs of preference are found in this science. u " " and the known ".It is With regard to the object apparent that the object and the aim of this science is
in

And

Truth,

And

it

is

impossible

to

compare other existant

things with His grandeur. With regard to ascertainment of argument and corroboration of proof*. It is established that observation is stronger than

argumentation.
lawful that

The Masters
Ilis

of the art of

Kal&m

consider

it

God

the Almighty should give

man

knowledge about
Since
sort
it is

is

existence, qualities lawful, the acquisition of some knowledge of this undoubtedly superior to that which necessitates

and

the necessary so on.

bearing the troubles of observation, labours of reasoning, and falling into the places of doubts and abodes of suspicion.

One

of

the
of

Sufis

was asked, "What
Creator?"

is

the proof
u For

of
it is

the the

existence

the

He

replied:

me

morning instead of the lamp/' Also another one of them u The semblance of one who seeks after the Truth says:
through arguments
a lamp.
"
is

like

one searching after the sun with

Since the masters of the principles have accepted and agreed that in the next world Clod the Almighty will create
in

a perception in the sense of vision, to see Grod withmediation argument, proof, and admonition are no considerations with the People of Truth. So according to

men

out

;

these principles it befits [Him] to create in his [man's] heart perceptions of this kind in order to see Him in this world

without any mediation and proof. And it is therefore that ()mar may God be pleased with him said, "My heart has
4

1. In the following argument the author tries to explain that marifa employs observation (mushdhada) and discards argument and proof (employed by other sciences,), because observation is stronger than argument and proof, and because in face of it there is no need for them.

32
seen my Lord" and 'All may God beautify his face says, 1 1 " If the veil is And here removed, my belief is not increased.
'

secrets are concealed in this place.

which are not proper
importance.

[to

be dealt with]

There is no doubt that for men there is nothing more important than the greatest felicity. Rather, all questions cannot be treated in this brief treatise. And the greatest of the means of
With
regard
to

access

is

ma^rifa.
all

proved that ma'rifa is nobler And Juriayd peace be upon him said, than I knew that under the sky there is a science in this world "If nobler than that in which the seekers of ma^rifa contemplate, I would have engaged myself to buy it and would have toiled
aspects
it is

So from

all sciences. 2

in the best

way

to acquire

it

until I

had got

"

it.

CHAPTER Two ON WHAT APPEARS TO THE AHLI-BADAYA.

The

first lightning-

that

comes

to the souls of the Seekers

from the presence of Divinity is accidents and flashes; and those lights dawn upon the soul of the [mystic] traveller from the world of Divinity and it is delightful.
;

that a dazzling light suddenly onrush u He it is Who shows comes, and soon disappears and you
Its
is like this
:

;

the lightning.,"8
the second point of view it refers to the "times" The lifts call these of the Companions of Seclusion. " Time " time " and it is therefore that one accidents says, " " Time is have than the sword and is
said, sharper they a cutting sword." In the Book of God there are many " The references to that, as it is said splendour of His light:

From

1.

2.

3

Of. also p. 22. I do not take certainty in excess ". Massignon, La Passion II, 545; the saine, Tawftstn p, 156. Quran XIII, 13.

*'

Lit.

Of. L.

33
1 2 was W&si|l away the eye-sight." u Wherefrom is the restlesness of some people in asked, the state of hearing music?" He answered, "There is a

ning almost takes

light

which appears and

is

then extinguished;" and quoted

this verse : 3
44

From them
The

a flash came to the heart.

44

And

appeared and dwindled away." therein they have food for the morning and the
flash of the lightning

night."4

These flashes do not come
are intercepted.

at all times.

At times they

And when

ascetic exercise increases, light-

nings come more often, until that limit is reached that whatever man looks into, he sees some of the states of the next
world.

Suddenly these dazzling

lights

become
shaken. 5

successive:

As is welland may be after this the limbs are the Prophet peace be upon him says in expectaknown, u tion of this state, Verily, for your Lord there are blasts of in the days of your time, provided you expose His mercy
6 yourselves thereunto."

At the time of break, the dovotee seeks the help of gentle thought and pure commemoration, against the impurities of
carnal desires, in order to regain this state.
1.

And

it is

pos-

Quran XXIV, 43. Abu Bekr al-Wasitf (died 331J is meant here. For his life see His works Nafafeat al-uns, edited by W. Nassau Lees, Calcutta 1859. have been utilised by Sulaml in his Tafsir, cf. L. Massignon, Textes
2.

inedits, p.

72

;

Lexique Technique,
"

p.

293

;

Kitab al-Taw&stn,
"
of

p.

215.

Al-Wasiti's sayings have been collected by

Ibrahim Miskln in the year

1067 A. H. in a book entitled
manuscript
3.
4.
is

Tarjamat-i aqwal-i W&si$t preserved in Calcutta A S B 1273.
of this line
is

which a

The metre

Bamal The line alludes to Quran XIII,

13.

5.

Quran XIX, 62. As an after-effect.
See also Mu'nis al-'ushshaq, p. 42.

6.

34
sible that

sometime

this state

does come to one

who

is

without

ascetic discipline, but
If

he remains unaware.
in the

one waits for

go

to places of worship,

glorifications

days of 'Id-festivities when men and when raised voices and loud and harsh clamours take place and sounds of
it

cymbals and trumpets prevail if he is a man of intelligence having a sound nature and rememorizes the divine states, he will at once find this effect which is very pleasant.

And

likewise

it is

in battles

when men come

face to face

and the clamour of the warriors rises and there is neighing of the horses and the sounds of the drum and the military band become louder, and men engage in fight and unsheath swords: If some one has a little purity of heart, even if he is not a man of [ascetic] discipline, he will come to know of this
state
states

provided that at that time he rernemorizes the divine

and brings

to

mind

observation of [Divine]

the souls of the departed and the Majesty and the rows of the high

assembly.
Similarly,
if

somebody

sits

on a galloping horse

arid

run very hard 1 and thinks that, he is leaving the body aside and becoming extremely reverent and going to
it

makes

the presence of
exclusively and
to

[Divine]

Existence in the state of the soul

be included in the rows of the saints

an

effect like this state will also

not a devotee of discipline. only a few can understand in these days.

appear to him, although he is And here there are secrets which

When
to

these lightnings

come
also

to

men

they affect the brain
in

some

extent,

and

it 2

may

shoulder and back,
1.

etc; so

and that the vein begins to pulsate and
appear
the

brain

The use

of d>j* as an

adverb of a verbal noun

is

very

old

is

not commonly found now-a-days, com p. also the use of
2.
i.

?:***

in the

same way.
e.

the effect.

35
if;

is

very pleasant, and he also
is

tries to

complete sama'.

So

far this

the

first

stage.

CHAPTER THREE ON TRANQUFLLITY.

At length when the lights of the Secret reach the utmost extremity and do not pass away quickly and remain for a longtime, that is called "Tranquillity" and its delight is

When a man perfect than the delights of other flashes. returns from Tranquillity, and comes back to [the ordinary
state ofj

more

humanity, he is highly regretful regarding this one of the saints has said
u

at
:

its

separation;

and

breath of the soul,

One who

is

how good are you, emerged you has tasted the food
in
is

of

intimacy."
In the Holy
times, as
it is

Quran Tranquillity
u

mentioned

many

said:

and

in another

And God sent down His tranquillity" 1 u He it is Who sent down place He says

Tranquillity into the hearts of the faithful that they might add
belief

unto their belief/' 2

He who

attains Tranquillity

knows

about the minds of men, and acquires knowlege of unknown
things,

and

his

penetration of

Chosen

God

bless

mind becomes perfect. The and keep him arid his family informed

u

about it, saying, "Fear a believer's penetration of mind, for he And the Prophet peace perceives with the light of God." be upon him says about Omar be God pleased with him,
4

and he

Verily, Tranquillity speaks through the tongue of 'Omar;" also said, "Verily, in community there are

my

mutakallim(Ln and muhaddithftn and'Omar

is

one of them."

possesses Tranquillity hears very pleasant sounds from the high Paradise, and spiritual discourses reach him; and he becomes comfortable; as is mentioned in the Divine Revelation "Verily, in the remembrance of God
:

One who

do hearts find
1.

rest!

"3

.

And he

witnesses very

fresh

and

2. 3.

Quran XLVIII, 26, Quran XLVIII, 4 Quran XIII, 28.

36
pleasant forms through the compact of his contiguity with the spiritual world.

Of

the stages of the People of

Love

this is the interme-

diate one.

sleep he hears terrible voices and strange noises at the time of the slumber of Tranquillity and sees huge lights and he may become

In the state between

awakening and

helpless through superabundance of delight.

These accidents are according to the Seekers [of Truth] and not in the manner of a group who close their eyes in their privacy and cherish phantasies. Had they sensed the
lights

of

the

truthful,

encountering them;
will lose."*

u And

many would have been the there those who deemed

sorrows
it

vain

PART TWO ABOUT THE ENDS
Chapters.

and

it

has three

.

CHAPTER ONE ON ANNIHILATION.

becomes such that if man desires Then man to keep it off from himself he cannot do so. reaches such a stage that whenever he likes, he gives up the body and goes to the world of [Divine] Majesty; and his And whenever he likes or ascents reach the high spheres. So whenever he looks at himself he desires he can do so.

And

this Tranquillity

becomes happy, because he discerns the radiance of God's Hitherto it is a defect light [falling] on him.
he exerts further, he also passes this stage. He becomes such that he does not look on himself and his knowIf

ledge of his existence

is

lost; this is

called

"fana-i-akbar".

I.

Quran XL,

78.

37

When
it is

one forgets himself and also forgets the forgetfulness

called "fana darfana".

And
loss.

as
is

This

long as they- delight in ma'rifa they are at a reckoned amongst latent polytheism. On the

other hand, he reaches perfection when he loses knowledge * in the "known", because, whoever delights in "knowledge" likewise as in the "known" has made that2 his object. He
is

"alone"

when
it

in the

"knowledge."
disappears
of
is

"Known'' he gives up the thought of When the knowledge of humanity also the state of Obliteration, and is the stage
is

"Everyone

that

in

it,

will pass

away and there remaineth
and Beneficient" 8

but the face of

Thy

Lord, the Glorious

One of the Seekers says that "There is no God but God" is the unification of the common-folk, and "There is no He but Him" is the unification of the higher class. He
has erred in the classification.

There are

five

grades of Tauhld.
4

One
is

is

"There

is

no

God
folk

but

God" and

this is the unification of the

commonThese

negative Deity are the commonest of the people

who

from what

not God.

common.

another group, nobler in comparison to these and commoner in comparison to another sect.

Beyond

this sect there is

[group] than the first one. higher higher, because the first group only negative divinity from what is
is

Their unification

is

"There

is

no

He but Him". This And their place is

1.

i.e.,

knowledge about the acquirements*
knowledge.
27, 28.
is

2.
3.

i.e.,

Quran LV,
i.e.,

4.

negate divinity from what

not God.

88
other group did not restrict themselves to the other negating Truth from what is not Truth. On hand, in face of the existence of God, the Almighty, they

not

God

This

have negated
is

all

other existences.
else

They have
So
"

for

Him, none
"

" can be called

He

said: "

Heship because all
"
is

"

"

"

Heships
sively

eirianate

from Him.

Heship

exclu-

meant

for

Him.
is

another group whose unification is This group is higher There is no Thou but Thou". that which addressed God as "Him". "Him" is used for than

Beyond

these there

"

These negate all " Thouships which in occa" " sioning Thouship asserts the existence of oneself; and
the
absei\t.

"

they refer to the presence [of God].

There

They say
separates
duality
is

:

a group above these and these are higher still.' When someone addresses another as " thou " he
is

him from himself, and he asserts duality; and far removed from the world of unity. They lost
themselves lost in
"
:

and

considered

the

appearance

of

God, and said
truer than

There

is

no

I

but Me".

They spoke
all

all these.

I-ship,

Thou-ship, and He-ship are

superfluous reflections about the essence of the unity of the Self-existant They submerged all the three words in the sea
of Obliteration .and destroyed expressions and annihilated 1 references: "And everything will perish save His face."

And their place is more elevated. As human attachments with this world

long as a man has he will not reach the

world of Divinity above which there is no other stage since u What is no end. A pious man was asked it has
:

tasawwuf

?

"

He answered:
it

"Its

beginning

is

God and

as

regards the end

has no end."

1.

Quran XXVIII,

88.

39

CHAPTER TWO ON THE MORE LEARNED ONE MORE PERFECT HE IS.

is

THE

44

There is a well known tradition of the Prophet saying Never has God created an ignorant Wall". The Master
:

of the great Shar'ia, with all his perfection, was commanded to increase [his] knowledge ; and God, the Almighty, orders him " And say, Lord, increase me in knowledge. "* One of his blessing sayings is, "No morning will come for
:

O my

any day of yours So, when such is the
case with others ?

in

which knowledge is not increased". case with the Prophet what will be the

to the gnostic through not necessary to deal with divorce, business, taxation and transactions because this is an exoteric
this

For

knowledge which comes

revelation

it is

science; rather, the selfexistence

comes through discovering the affairs of and [Divine] Majesty and Protectorship, and the arrangement of the organisation of existence, and the world of angels, and the hidden secrets in heaven and
it

earth; as

He

said:

"Say [unto them,
of

O Muhammad] He Who
:

knoweth
revealed

the
it." 2

secret

the

heavens and the earth hath

is

find out the secret of predestination and to divulge it forbidden; as in prohibiting it the saying of the Prophet

To

distinctly

commands

:

"Predestination

is

the secret of

God

t

so do not divulge

it."

The People
the
secret

of Reality are all of opinion that divulging

Also all that predestination is heresy. is within the knowledge of the Men of Reality is not put into expression, lest all people practise it, because the
of

beauty of the Majesty of [Divine]
1.

Oneness

is

above

this

2.

Quran XX, 113. Quran XXV, 7,

40
that
it

should be the passage of every comer, and the
of

objective

every
while,

messenger,
u

every seeker

and the aim and object of Pew of my senr ants are thankful." *

In the nature of mankind, in spite of the great number of the limbs of the body, there is not more than u one dot" 2

worthy of the horizon of Divinity. "We found there but one house of those surrendered [to Allah]." 3 So when the
case of the constitution of a person is in this fashion that out of the many faculties and limbs, and of the composition of mankind with its multiplicity of compositions, there is not

capable of making progress, then the condition of a populated place should also be corijunctured to be

more than one

4

same wise. Then the talk these are two couplets of mine
in the
:

is

better unexpressed

;

and

44

In the corner of the tavern are

many men,

Who
They

read the secrets of the

tablet; of existence.

are out of the evil of the afflictions of the

revolutions of the firmaments, They know ; and are glad and happy."

A man

possessing in sight should

always investigate

realities, and express only that much which is worthy of his mind. Husain Mans&r-i-Hall&j God's mercy u be upon him said Love between two persons becomes So fast when between them no secret remains hidden." when love becomes perfect, the secrets of hidden and concealed sciences and of the corners of the existing things do not remain concealed to him.

strange things and

:

Since the acme of the perfection of

man

is to

attain the

resemblance of

God

the Almighty,
12.

and since the knowledge

1.

Qwun XXXIV,

2.
3.

4.

Before to the heart. Quran LI, 36. The same nuqta.

41
of Perfection
is

a

quality of his, ignorance

is

a defect in

him.
It

therefore

follows that
is

whoever knows more about
nobler.

the

realities of
is

His existence

And

in short: igno-

rance

hideous.

CHAPTER THREE ON THE AFFIRMATION OF MAN'S RELISH AND AFFECTION TOWARDS GOD, THE ALMIGHTY.
Mutakallim&n and the whole of the Ahl-i usftl is that man should not take to God for his friend, because friendship consists in the inclination of the soul for a homogeneous being, and God, the Almighty, is rather above having any kindredship with the creation affection consists in man's obedience towards God.
belief of

The

the

:

The People
that

of matrifa affirm affection

and

relish.

And
;

in

homogeneity is not a condition according to them since [sometimes] a man likes a colour or an object, in spite of the
fact that

God

not homogeneous with him. Affection towards the Almighty has no connection with animal faculties,
it is

rather there
secrets

is

a divine

point which

is

the

centre

of

the

Dhauy. imagining the presence of another: and in is not a condition.

of Truth, in man. And this affection is related to And affection is finding pleasure of one person in
this

homogeneity

Love consists
limit,

of

an affection which has transgressed

its

It gives rise to the acquisition of desire

Every yearner has by matter of necessity thing and not another, because if he has acquired

and yearning. acquired one
ail

the beauty of the beloved, he will not remain behind [seeing] his face ; and also, if he has acquired and comprehended nothing his desire will not be fulfilled. So all yearning is

the acquisition of the non-acquired. But yearning tive, because it necessitates non-acquirement

is

defec-

42

The
the

discourse about the affirmation of relish
of

means

the

perfection with regard to a thing and the acquisition. When perfection with knowledge regard to tilings is acquired and the acquirer is unaware of When the eye acquires perfection is not perfection. it, it

acquirement

of

with regard to things

it

consists of the sight's vision of subtle

things ; and it discovers that, and is relished thereby. The sense of hearing has a relishment, and that is perception of the subtle hearings of pleasant voices. The sense of smell

perceives

subtlities of pleasant smells
it is

:

and

like-wise in the

same manner

with

all

other faculties.
is

regard to the rational soul,

Perfection, with the knowledge of Truth and

comprehension of

realities.

its perfection with regard illumination of the light of

to

So when the soul acquires that, supreme things comes from the
Truth, and rises to perfection
is

with regard to God, of which the relish because its comprehension is nobler.

greater

still,

The human

soul

is

the noblest of the Seekers and Truth
"

u is the greatest of the fect ; but the impotent

known.

So

relish

must be more per-

man

has no sense of the pleasures of
4

copulation, though he hears that men enjoy it to their full: and that old man has said well '0ne who did not taste,
:

does not know,"

This story
the days of

is

the affirmation of relish and affection.

In

Junayd

peace of

were reported against. Mutakallim&n and Fuqah&' scandalised the Brethren

God be upon him the SAfls Ghnl&m Khalll 1 and a number of
of

1.

Ghulam
h.

Khalll (died
b.

Ahmad

Muhammad

275) whose full name Gh&lib b. Khalid al-Basrl

is

Abti 'Abdallah

was a Hanbalite

faqth, traditionalist

and ascetic, cf. Tkrtkh Baghdad V, 78; Nafaljat ul-Uns and Abu l-Mahasin, Nujftm, Vol. II, 79. He urged the Caliph to put Junayd, Nurl etc., to death since they were freethinkers and heretics cf. Tadhkirat al-AwliyA' II, 48. See also Kashf ul-mahjub, Transl. p. 191 and Massignon, Textes p. 212.

43
Seclusion
infidelity

and gave a verdict of their heterodoxy and and produced witnesses and documents. In that

calamity
'i-Husain
of great

Junayd withdrew himself. Amlrul-qulftb Abu N&ri 1 and Katt&ui? and ZaqqAq 3 and a number
in

men were produced

the

The executioner intended
story that execution. 4
sacrifice

to kill [them].

assembly of justice. It is a well-known

Abu '1-Husain Nftrt made haste to open the He was asked about it and said " I wished to for my brethren the one moment of my life which
:

remained." This story was related to the Caliph and it turned a cause of their liberation. Before this they also tried to injure Dhu 'n-Niin al-Misri, but God the Almighty granted

him

liberty.

CHAPTER ON THE END OF THE BOOK.
essence of the distributed is not worthy of knowing the undistributed because [in that case] knowledge will also be distributed and his distribution will also cause the " The distribution of knowledge. Mangftr-i Hallaj said 5 Sflft does not accept and is not accepted and is not divided
;
:

The

and dissected

".

b. Muhammad an-Nurf (died 295) was a the time of Junayd. Of. Nafah&t ul-Uns; Massignon, Textes He founded also a sect cf. Kashf al-Mahjub, transl. by in^dits, p. 51. Nicholson, p. 189-95.
1.

Abu 1-Husain Ahmad

famous

sufi in

2.

Abft

Bakr al-Katt&ni
II, 296;

his life cf.

Shadhar&t

(died 322) was a disciple of Junayd. T&rtkh Baghdad III, 74.

For

3.

Abu Bekr Ahmad

a contemporary of Junayd

ShaV&nf, Tabaq&t al-kubrft, the same mistake as in our text.
4.
viz., to

Nasr az-Zaqq&q al-Misri (died 290) was Nafah&t p. 213 Textes inSdits, p, 44 Cairo 1299, Vol. I, 177 where Daqq&q is just
b.
cf.
; ;

be killed

first of all.

5.
p.

Cf.

Massignon, Lexique

:

Textes Hallagiens,

p.

94 (section

III),

95

(section IV, 3).

44

He

also said at the time of crucification

:

ecstatic is the

complete

isolation

of

the

The aim of the One in unity". 1

"

Those who wish to throw off the workshop of the spider ought to remove 19 gripers from themselves. Of these, five are the the external birds 2 internal and five ones'* and two fast walkers with movements visible and seven slow walkers with invisible movements. Of
all,
it

is

more

difficult

for

you

to

drive

off

the

birds,

because

however

much a man

flies,

the birds fly

a-head of him and perplex him. Of all the birds, the internal ones are the more difficult to repel. Between them in an island where slender legged men dwell. Whenever a

man

they suddenly kick their legs and put them in his neck and deter him from his progress so that he may not find the water of life.
proceeds
I

takes

have heard that if one embarks in the ark of Nfth and the rod of Moses in his hand he will be freed

from

that.

union, therefore, is according to Hallaj not the desbut the transfiguration of the personality. Of. Massignon, Kitah truction, al-Tawftsln, p. 165, 169, 182 Lexique Textes Hallagiens p, 103.
1.

The Divine

;

:

2. 3.

i.e.,
i

the five external senses.
the five internal senses.

e.,

CHAPTER
TRANSLATION
OF THE

IV.

"LANGUAGE OF TRUTH"
44

AND THAT IS THE TREATISE OF THE BIRD.

ff

Praise be to God, the Beneficent, the Merciful.

*O Lord

help in

its

completion.

1

Translation of the language of Truth and that is the treatise of the Bird by the leader of the world, the most learned of the time, the king of scholars and philosophers

Shaykh Shih&buddin as-Suhrawerdl
him.
Is there

peace of

God

be upon

anyone among
that I

my

brethren

who may

lend

me

some hearing

partnership and brotherhood, because one's friendship is not pure unless he guards it against the contamination of impurity. And where can I find such a sincere friend since the
friendships of these times are [common] like merchandise at the time of need, and the regard for the friend is discarded when there is needlessness except the bro-

that perhaps he

may relate to him a part of my may bear some of my troubles in

troubles,

therhood of friends which is a tie from Divine proximity, and whose affection comes from sublime neighbourhood, and who see the hearts of each other with the eyes of reality and scour off the rust of doubt and pride from their
minds.
Truth,
This
class
is

not assembled except by the

call of

When

they are assembled they accept this precept^

Brethren of Reality, conceal yourselves like the porcupine that exposes its inward-side to the desert and conceals his outward-side. For, I swear by God, that your inside is
revealed and your outside
1
1.

O

is

concealed.
by the
scribe.

The words seem

to be an addition

46
of Reality, strip off the skin wearing even as the snake does. And walk like that no one may hear the sound of your steps.
the

Brethren

that:

you

are

the ant so

And be

like
;

scorpion so

for the devil

that your arms are always on your back comes from the back. And take poison in
live happily.

order that

you may

Welcome

death so that

you may remain alive. And always keep flying and do not specify any nest, for all birds are caught from their And if you have no feathers to fly with, creep on nests. And be like the ostrich the earth till you chajige place.
that swllow hot 1 pebbles.
eats

Arid be

like

the vulture

which

hard bones.

And be

like the

salamander which per-

petually stays in the fire; so that it (fire may not hurt you tomorrow. And be like the bat which does not come out in

the

day

[time], in order that

you may be secure from the

hands of enemies.
Brethren of Reality, there is no wonder if an angel commits no crime, or if a beast or an animal does an evil act,

O

because the angel does not possess the capability of doing evil and the beast does not possess the capability of understanding. of a man

On
who

the other hand, the
carries the

[rea-1]

commands

of passion

wonder is, the act and submits

himself to passions in spite of the light of intellect. And, by honour of God, the Great, that the man who remains firm-

footed at the time of the attack of passions is superior to an and again, one who is submissive to passions is far angel worse than a beast.
;

Now to revert Know you, O

to

my

tale

and

relate

my

troubles

:

Brethren of Reality, that a number of

hunters came to the desert and spread their nets and scattered corn and set up the illusions of terrifying figures and
scare-crows 2 ; and hid themselves in leaves.
I

was flying

in a

^

flock of birds.
1.
i. e. t

When

the

hunters saw us they

whistled
,

sun-baked. 2. In order to give the desert the appearance of a corn-field and to deceive the birds.

47
beautifully and put us into. doubt. saw a clean and beautiful place.

We looked

[down] and

We had no misgivings, and no suspicion kept us back from the desert. We turned towards that smire-house and were caught in the snare. When we looked about we descried that the loops of the snare were in our necks and the fetters of the nets on our feet. All of us tried to move that perhaps we may be freed from that calamity. The more we moved the firmer became the bonds. So we gave up ourselves to destruction and submitted ourselves to that affliction. And every one became busy with his own affliction, for we did not care for one
engaged ourselves in finding out a stratagem as to how to free ourselves. For time we remained thus, till we made a habit of it and forgot our previous custom. We found ease in the bonds and resigned ourselves to the
another.

We

narrowness of the cage.

Then one day I looked out of these bonds and saw number of my friends who had got their heads and wings out of the snares and had come out of these narrow And every one had a strap of cages and were about to fly.
a

on his leg, which [however] did not hold back their bodies from flight. They were with those bonds. When I saw that I remembered pleased my former times and my liberty in the air. And that which I wished to I [formerly] liked and loved became irksome.
those scare-crows and bonds
left

soul may leave the die out of grief or that I called out to them and cried to departure.

my

to

come
and

close

to

relief

to share with

me and guide me me in my affliction,

for help in contriving for for I

body them

at their

my

was driven

to

despair.

They

recollected the stratagem of the hunters;

were

from me. I bound frightened; and ran away them by the oath of old friendship and companionship which knew of no impurity. That oath did not remove the doubt

from their hearts and they percieved no assurance of heart Once more I reminded [about my friendliness] to help me

48

them

displayed my helplessness. They me. I asked them about; their state [saying] approached "How did yon secure your freedom and how are you conof

past day**,

and

tented with those remainders of the bonds?"

which they had contrived for themselves so that I got my neck and wings out of the snare. And they opened the door of the When I came out they said to me, "Regard this cage. [much] freedom as a blessing". I requested, "Remove this bond from my leg". They replied, "Had we the power to do And so we would have first removed it from our own legs. no one asks for cure and medicine from a sick physician and if he asks for medicine from him, it is ineffective."
in the

Then they helped me

same way

in

;

;

have before us lengthy roads and frightful and fearful stages of which we cannot be care-free. Rather we may likely loose this state for a second time and be once again entangled in that
So
I fle\r

with them.

They

said to me, u

We

former state [of captivity ]. So we must take fly out of these fearful nets all at once and right path once again."

all

pains
fall

to

to

on the

Then we took

to

the

middle of two roads.

It

was a

flew alright valley abundant in water and green grass. till we those snare-houses. And we did not attend to passed
the whistle of

We

any hunter.

and looked about. In mountains, the summits

a mountain-top front of us there were eight other

And we reached

which the eyes of the onlookers could not behold on account of their height. We said to one another, "Alighting is out of question, and there is no better than security passing these mountains safely, there is a number of because in every mountain
of

And if we attend to these people who aim at iis. and remain with the delights of these mountains [mountains] and the pleasures of these places, we will never reach our

49

So we took great pains, so that we passed six mounThen some said, 4t lt is time tains and reached the seventh. to take rest, for we have not the strength to fly; and we are away from enemies and hunters and have come a long distance, and an hour's rest will take us to the destination " but if we add to these troubles we will perish.
end.
;

So we alighted on

this

mountain.

We saw trimmed

fruit-gardens, beautiful buildings, nice palaces, pleasant fruitbearing trees and running waters, such that its bounties arrest-

ed the eye and its elegance deprived the body of its senses; and notes of birds the like of which we had not heard, and sweet smells which had never readied our nostrils. We todk

and water with great pleasure and we stayed there till we cast away our fatigue. Then we heard the cry: "We must prepare for the journey because there IH no safety beyond circumspection, and no fortress is stronger than susand to stay for long is to waste away life; and the picion; enemies are following at our wake and gathering news (about
fruit
1

us)".

So we went up to the eighth mountain. On account of When we neared it we height its summit reached the sky.
heard notes of birds
011

account of the melodiousness of

which our wings became feeble and we began to drop. We saw many kinds of bounties, and figures, from which we could not remove our eyes. We alighted. They treated us kindly and entertained us with these bounties which no created
being can praise or describe. When the governor of that province made us free with himself and when familiarity developed we informed him of our affliction and explained to

him what had passed on
heartily share these

us.

He was
with

distressed

and

said,

u I

sorrows

you".

Then he added,

1.

Persian

>j~>.

will

mean "Out

^s^.

If

of pleasure

we took

we read (j^. to go with plenty of those fruits etc/*

Wj

*j**

it

60
"At the end of
this

Majesty the king resides.

mountain there is a city where His He removes the oppression and grief

from every oppressed person that reaches las court arid trusts is him. And whatever I say in praise of him is incorrect because he is above all that
7

'.

So our hearts were consoled with what we heard from him, and in compliance with his instructions we set for the court and reached that city.
*

We descended in the court of His Majesty the king. He had informed the vedette of the country before our arrival; and an order was issued to present the visitors to His Majesty. So they lead us. We saw a palace and a courtyard of which our eyes could not behold the wideness. When we passed [these] a curtain was raised and another courtyard came into view more beautiful and wider than that [former one], so that we considered the first one darker in comparison to this courtyard. Then we reached a parlour. When we stepped into the parlour, we saw from a distance the light
of the beauty of

the king.

In that light our eyes were perstray;

plexed and our intellects went
with his

and we swooned. Then kindness he restored our intellects and gave us

narrated our hardships and troubles liberty to speak. to the king and related our stories; and requested him to

We

remove
remain

is

the remaining bonds from our legs so that we service at the court. He answered, "The

may
name

them
to

person will remove the bonds from your legs who has put there. I will send a messenger with you so as

remove the bonds from your legs." shouted out that we must depart. So we turned away from the king; and as yet we are on the way, walking with the king's messenger.
*to

compel him

And

the chamberlains

Some of my friends asked me
king and
to narrate his

to describe

His Majesty the

beauty and grandeur.
j

Though

I

cannot accomplish

that, [ye*

I

will

give a

brief

summary.

51

you, that whensoever you imagine in your inind a beauty unmingled with any evil and a perfection untouched

Know

by any

defect,

you

.will find it there;

since in

reality

all

beauties belong to him. At the time of gentleness he is all face: at the time of Whoever generosity he is all hand.

served him gained eternal blessing, and whoever turned his face from him "lost this world and the next/ 71
u hearing this story many a friend said, I think that a fairy molests you or a demon has permeated through you. By God you did not fly; rather, your intellect has flown

On

Whenever

away; and they hunted not you, but your consciousness. did a mad man fly ? Whenever did a bird speak? Perhaps yellow-bile has overcome your temperament or You must take insanity has found its way to your brain.
a decoction of the

dodder of thyme; 2 and go to hot-water bath and pour hot water on your head; and use the oil of water lily; 3 and observe moderation in your meals; and avoid wakef ulness; and have no worries since before this we used to find you sensible and wise. And God is our witness that we are sick for you and on account of the confusion that has found its way to you.
accepted very little. And the worst of words is that which is wasted and remains ineffecAnd I seek help from God. And whoever does not tive.

They

talked

much and

I

what I have said is ignorant, and <4 those who do wrong will come to know by what a [great] reverse they
beleive
will

be overturned." 4

1.

Quran XXII,

11.
is

2.

Afthimtin (from Greek epithymon)

a medical plant.
is

3.

The

oil of nildfar

i.e.

Euryale ferox Salisb.

well-known as a

calming medicine.
4.

Quran XXVI, 228.

CORRIGENDA
P.
7,

12

instead

of

"final"

read
1

lt

"
final o

P.
P.

10,

foot-note 6 after "had" delete "times"
13
instead of "philosophy' read "his philosophy," instead of "image" read "the image" read treatise' instead of "all questions " all objects are but subservient to it'' " " read " he should instead of he also....svrw/
1

11,

P. 26,
P. 32,

5
7-8

P. 35,

1

P.

35,

12

also try to complete it through WHUY instead of "soul" read "nearness"; instead

of

P. 41,

5

emerged in" read "has alighted on" from the end: instead of "he will face"
"is

read

"his desire will not remain unfulfilled''
P. 46,
11

instead of "swallow" read "swallows"

P. 47, 21-22 read

according

to

the

commentary

'"which,

P.

50

10

in spite of that, did not keep them back instead of "He had. ..country" read 'The

P.

51,

12

vedette had informed the king" delete "mad"

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