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(Asrar-e-Khudi-22) Andz Meer-e-Nijat Naqshband Almaroof Ba Baba'ay Sehrai Ke...

Precepts written for the Muslims of India by Mir Najat Nakshband, who is generally known as Baba Sahrai

O You that have grown from earth, like a rose,
You too are born of the womb of self!
Do not abandon self! Persist therein!
Be a drop of water and drink up the ocean
Glowing with the light of self as tyou are,
Make self strong, and you wilt endure.
You gettʹst profit from the trade,
You gainʹst riches by preserving this commodity.
You are being, and art you afraid of not‐being?
Dear friend, your understanding is at fault.
Since I am acquainted with the harmony of Life.,
I will tell you what is the secret of Life –
To sink into yourself like the pearl,
Then to emerge from thine inward solitude;
To collect sparks beneath the ashes,
And become a flame and dazzle menʹs eyes.
Go, burn the house of forty yearsʹ tribulation,
Move round yourself! Be a circling flame!
What is Life but to be freed from moving round others
And to regard yourself as the Holy Temple?
Beat your wings and escape from the attraction of Earth:
Like birds, be safe from falling.
Unless you are a bird., you wilt do wisely
Not to build your nest on the top of a cave.
O you that seekest to acquire knowledge,
I say oʹer to you the message of the Sage of Rum:
“Knowledge, if it lie on your skin, is a snake;
Knowledge, if you take it to heart, is a friend.”
Hast you heard how the Master of Rum
Gave lectures on philosophy at Aleppo? –
Fast in the bonds of intellectual proofs,
Drifting oʹer the dark and stormy sea of understanding;
A Moses unillumined by Loveʹs Sinai,
Ignorant of Love and of Loveʹs passion.
He discoursed on Scepticism and Neoplatonism,
And strung many a brilliant pearl of metaphysics.
He unravelled the problems of the Peripatetics,
The light of his thought made clear whatever was obscure.
Heaps of books lay around and in front of him,
And on his lips was the key to all their mysteries.
Shams‐i‐Tabriz, directed by Kamal,
Sought his way to the college of Jalauddin Rumi
And cried out, “What is all this noise and babble?
What are all these syllogisms and judgements and demonstrations?”
“Peace, O fool!” exclaimed the Maulvi,
“Do not laugh at the doctrines of the sages. 
Get you out of my college!
This is argument and discussion; what have you to do with it?
My discourse is beyond your understanding.
It brightens the glass of perception!
These words increased the anger of Shams‐i‐Tabriz
And caused a fire to burst forth from his soul.
The lightning of his look fell on the earth,
And the glow of his breath made the dust spring into flames.
The spiritual fire burned the intellectual stack
And clean consumed the library of the philosopher.
The Maulvi, being a stranger to Loveʹs miracles
And unversed in Loveʹs harmonies,
Cried, “How didst you kindle this fire,
Which hath burned the books of the philosophers?”
The Shaykh answered, “O unbelieving Muslim,
This is vision and ecstasy: what hast you to do with it?
My state is beyond your thought,
My flame is the Alchemistʹs elixir.”
You hast drawn your substance from the snow of philosophy,
The cloud of your thought sheds nothing but hailstones.
Kindle a fire in your rubble,
Foster a flame in your earth!
The Muslimʹs knowledge is perfected by spiritual fervour,
The meaning of Islam is Renounce what shall pass away.
When Abraham escaped from the bondage of “that which sets,”
He sat unhurt in the midst of flames.
You have cast knowledge of God behind you
And squandered your religion for the sake of a loaf.
You are hot in pursuit of antimony,
You are unaware of the blackness of thine own eye.
Seek the Fountain of Life from the swordʹs edge,
And the River of Paradise from the dragon’s mouth,
Demand the Black Stone from the door of the house of idols,
And the musk‐deerʹs bladder from a mad dog,
But do not seek the glow of Love from the knowledge of today,
Do not seek the nature of Truth from this infidelʹs cup!
Long have I been running to and fro,
Learning the secrets of the New Knowledge:
Its gardeners have put me to the trial
And have made me intimate with their roses.
Roses! Tulips, rather, that warn one not to smell them –
Like paper roses, a mirage of perfume.
Since this garden ceased to enthrall me
I have nested on the Paradisal tree.
Modern knowledge is the greatest blind –
Idol‐worshipping, idol‐selling, idol making!
Shackled in the prison of phenomena,
It has not overleaped the limits of the sensible.
It has fallen down in crossing the bridge of Life,
It has laid the knife to its own throat.
Its fire is cold as the flame of the tulip;
Its flames are frozen like hail.
Its nature remains untouched by the glow of Love,
It is ever engaged in joyless search.
Love is the Plato that heals the sicknesses of the mind.
The mindʹs melancholy is cured by its lancet.
The whole world bows in adoration to Love,
Love is the Mahmud that conquers the Somnath of intellect.
Modern science lacks this old wine in its cup,
Its nights are not loud with passionate prayer.
You hast misprized thine own cypress
And deemed tall the cypress of others.
Like the reed, you hast emptied yourself of self
And given thine heart to the music of others.
O you that beggʹst morsels from an otherʹs table,
Wilt you seek thine own kind in anotherʹs shop?
The Muslimʹs assembly‐place is burned up by the lamps of strangers,
His mosque is consumed by the sparks of monasticism.
When the deer fled from the sacred territory of Makkah,
The hunterʹs arrow pierced her side.
The leaves of the rose are scattered like its scent:
O you that has fled from the self, come back to it!
O trustee of the wisdom of the Quran,
Find the lost unity again!
We, who keep the gate of the citadel of Islam,
Have become unbelievers by neglecting the watchword of Islam.
The ancient Sakiʹs bowl is shattered,
The wine‐party of the Hijaz is broken up.
The Kaʹba is filled with our idols,
Infidelity mocks at our Islam.
Our Shaykh hath gambled Islam away for love of idols.
And made a rosary of the zunnar.
Our spiritual directors owe their rank to their white hairs
And are the laughing‐stock of children in the street;
Their hearts bear no impress of the Faith
But house the idols of sensuality.
Every long‐haired fellow wears the garb of a dervish –
Alas for these traffickers in religion!
Day and night they are traveling about with disciples,
Insensible to the great needs of Islam.
Their eyes are without light, like the narcissus,
Their breasts devoid of spiritual wealth.
Preachers and Sufis, all worship worldliness alike;
The prestige of the pure religion is ruined.
Our preacher fixed his eyes on the pagoda
And the mufti of the Faith sold his verdict.
After this, O friends, what are we to do?
Our guide turns his face towards the wine‐house.

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