Thursday, December 29, 2005

A Parable: The Straying Servant (Heart of Water)

A Parable: The Straying Servant

...The following is from Ibn' Ata' Allah Al-Iskandari's Kitab al-Tanwir fi Isqat al-Tadbir; known in the English language as The Book of Illumination....Open your hearts and read:

The Straying Servant

A person who is concerned for himself is like a servant whose master has dispatched him on a mission. The master has sent him to some land that the master owns in order to procure some cloth there for him. When the servant arrives in that place, he begins to say to himself, "Where will I reside? Whom will I marry?" He gets preoccupied with these questions, expending all his energy on anxiety about these concerns until he is delinquent in executing the commands for which his master had sent him. When his master calls on him, his reward from the master will be that the master cuts him off and seperates himself from the servant, since he was totally preoccupied by his own affairs rather than observing the perogatives and rights of his master.

So it is with you my fellow believer. The true One has dispatched you to this world and commanded you to serve in it faithfully, and has undertaken to support and sustain your existence contingent on your service. If you beome engrossed in worrying about your own concerns for yourself and neglect the rights held over you by your master, then you have turned aside from the path of right guidance and slid down the low road to ruin.

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