Likewise is it written, “And be ye not like those who forget God, and whom He hath therefore caused to forget their own selves. These are the wicked doers."(98)
The Second Valley
If the wayfarer’s goal be the dwelling of the Praiseworthy One (Mahmud),(99) this is the station of primal reason which is known as the Prophet and the Most Great Pillar.(100) Here reason signifieth the divine, universal mind, whose sovereignty enlighteneth all created things—nor doth it refer to every feeble brain; for it is as the wise Sana’i hath written:
How can feeble reason encompass
Or the spider snare a phoenix in his web?
Wouldst thou that the mind should not entrap thee?
Teach it the science of the love of God!
On this plane, the traveler meeteth with many a trial and reverse. Now is he lifted up to heaven, now is he cast into the depths. As it hath been said: “Now Thou drawest me to the summit of glory, again Thou castest me into the lowest abyss.” The mystery treasured in this plane is divulged in the following holy verse from the Surih of the cave:(101)
“And thou mightest have seen the sun when it arose, pass on the right of their cave, and when it set, leave them on the left, while they were in its spacious chamber. This is one of the signs of God. Guided indeed is he whom God guideth; but for him whom He misleadeth, thou shalt by no means find a patron.”
If a man could know what lieth hid in this one verse, it would suffice him. Wherefore, in praise of such as these, He hath said: “Men whom neither merchandise nor traffic beguile from the remembrance of God...."(102)
This station conferreth the true standard of knowledge, and freeth man from tests. In this realm, to search after knowledge is irrelevant, for He hath said concerning the guidance of travelers on this plane, “Fear God, and God will instruct thee."(103) And again: “Knowledge is a light which God casteth into the heart of whomsoever He willeth."(104)
Wherefore, a man should make ready his heart that it be worthy of the descent of heavenly grace, and that the bounteous Cup-Bearer may give him to drink of the wine of bestowal from the merciful vessel. “For the like of this let the travailers travail!"(105)
And now do I say, “Verily we are from God, and to Him shall we return."(106)
The Third Valley
If the loving seekers wish to live within the precincts of the Attracting One (Maj_dh_ub),(107) no soul may dwell on this Kingly Throne save the beauty of love. This realm is not to be pictured in words.
Love shunneth this world and
that world too,
In him are lunacies seventy-and-two.
The minstrel of love harpeth this lay:
Servitude enslaveth, kingship doth betray.(108)