Thy soul cares only for itself, like the camel:
It is self‐conceited, self‐governed, and self‐willed.
Be a man, get its halter into thine hand,
That thou mayst become a pearl albeit thou art a potterʹs vessel.
He that does not command himself
Becomes a receiver of commands from others.
When they moulded thee of clay,
Love and fear were mingled in thy making:
Fear of this world and of the world to come, fear of death,
Fear of all the pains of earth and heaven;
Love of riches and power, love of country,
Love of self and kindred and wife.
Man, in whom clay is mixed with water, is fond of ease,
Devoted to wickedness and enamoured of evil.
So long as thou hold’st the staff of “There is no god but He,”
Thou wilt break every spell of fear.
One to whom God is as the soul in his body,
His neck is not bowed before vanity.
Fear finds no way into his bosom,
heart is afraid of none but Allah.
Whoso dwells in the world of Negation
Is freed from the bonds of wife and child.
He withdraws his gaze from all except God
And lays the knife to the throat of his son.
Though single, he is like a host in onset:
Life is cheaper in his eyes than wind.
The profession of Faith is the shell, and prayer is the pearl within it:
The Moslem’s heart deems prayer a lesser pilgrimage.
In the Muslimʹs hand prayer is like a dagger
Killing sin and forwardness and wrong.
Fasting makes an assault upon hunger and thirst.
And breaches the citadel of sensuality.
The pilgrimage enlightens the soul of the Faithful:
It teaches separation from oneʹs home and
destroys attachment to oneʹs native land;
It is an act of devotion in which all feel themselves to be one,
It binds together the leaves of the book of religion.
Almsgiving causes love of riches to pass away
And makes equality familiar;
It fortifies the heart with righteousness,
It increases wealth and diminishes fondness for wealth.
All this is a means of strengthening thee:
Thou art impregnable, if thy Islam be strong.
Draw might from the litany “O Almighty One!”
That thou mayst ride the camel of thy body.