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Full text of "The Dabistan"

182

" ceeded on the way,1 and had left the mountains
" of Mecca, I saw a wanderer following my steps,
« who called out: 6 Stop!' But Jabriil said:' Hold
<l ' no conversation; goon.' I went on." By this
the power of the irngination is indicated; that is:
when I became free of the sight of my limbs and
every thing belonging to me, and yielding no more
to sensuality, and thus proceeded, the power of ima-
gination, upon my steps, called out to me to stop;
for the power of imagination is dextrous, and cer-
tainly is great, exerting itself in all affairs, and
serves in lieu of intellect to all animals ; but it is not
right to allow imagination too much liberty, because
it then descends to an equality with animals, and
disorders its noble nature; further, whoever is as-
sisted by the grace of God, follows not, on all occa-
sions, the imagination. As to what the prophet
said : " Behind me called out a woman, deceitful
'* and beauteous: * Stop until I join thee!' Jabriil
* * also said: * Go on, and bewar£ of stopping:' " this
means the power of imagination, which is deceitful
and bedecked, resembling a woman, to whom most
natures are inclined, and who keeps men in her
bondage; besides, whatever she does, is all art,

1 The ride proceeded to Jerusalem; a troop of Angels surrounded
them on all sides. On the way Muhammed was called to successively by
two men, the one of whom was a Jew, the other a Christian, and by a
seductive female; the prophet did not stop at the voice of either.