Saadi Shirazi

Sa'di] (1814-1291 / Iran

Ch 02 The Morals Of Dervishes Story 09

One of the devotees of Mount Lebanon, whose piety was famed in the Arab country and his miracles well known, entered the cathedral mosque of Damascus and was performing his purificatory ablution on the edge

of a tank when his feet slipped and he fell into the reservoir but saved himself with great trouble. After the congregation had finished their prayers, one of his companions said: ‘I have a difficulty.’ He asked: ‘What is it?’ He continued: ‘I remember that the sheikh walked on the surface of the African sea without his feet getting wetted and today he nearly perished in this paltry water which is not deeper than a man’s stature. What reason is there in this?’ The sheikh drooped his head into the bosom of meditation and said after a long pause: ‘Hast thou not heard that the prince of the world, Muhammad the chosen, upon whom be the benediction of Allah and peace, has said: I have time with Allah during which no cherubim nor inspired prophet is equal to me?’ But he did not say that such was always the case. The time alluded to was when Gabriel or Michael inspired him whilst on other occasions he was satisfied with the society of Hafsah and Zainab. The visions of the righteous one are between brilliancy and obscurity.

Thou showest thy countenance and then hidest it
Enhancing thy value and augmenting our desire.
I behold whom I love without an intervention.
Then a trance befalls me; I lose the road;
It kindles fire, then quenches it with a sprinkling shower.
Wherefore thou seest me burning and drowning.
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