A Traveler's Narrative

page 76

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"O Lord, I ask of Thee by the Supreme Word, whereat whosoever is in the earth and the heaven feareth save him who taketh hold of the `Most Firm Handle,' (42) that Thou wilt not abandon Me amongst Thy creatures: lift Me up unto Thee, and make Me to enter in under the shadow of Thy mercy, and give Me to drink of the pure wine of Thy grace, that I may dwell under the canopy of Thy glory and the domes of Thy favors: verily Thou art powerful unto that Thou wishest, and verily Thou art the Protecting, the Self-Sufficing.

"O King! The lamps of justice are extinguished, and the fire of persecution is kindled on all sides, until that they have made My people captives. This is not the first honor which hath been violated in the way of God. It behooveth everyone to regard and recall what befell the kindred of the Prophet until that the people made them captives and brought them in unto Damascus the spacious; and amongst them was the Prince of Worshipers, the Stay of the elect, the Sanctuary of the eager (the soul of all beside him be his sacrifice). It was said unto them, `Are ye seceders?' He said, `No, by God, we are servants who have believed in God and in His signs, and through us the teeth of faith are disclosed in a smile, and the sign of the Merciful One shineth forth; through our mention spreadeth Al-Bathá, (43) and the darkness which intervened between earth and heaven is dispelled.' It was said, `Have ye forbidden what God hath sanctioned, or sanctioned what God hath forbidden?' He said, `We were the first who followed the commandments of God: we are the source of command and its origin, and the firstfruits of all good and its consummation: we are the sign of the Eternal, and His commemoration amongst the nations.' It was said, `Have ye abandoned the Qur'án?' He said, `Through us did the Merciful One reveal it; and we are gales of the All-Glorious amidst [His] creatures; we are streams [Next Page]

42. Qur'án 2:257; 31:21.
43. Mecca.
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