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Full text of "The Dabistan"

229

rahmen, <£ mercy;" but the great name is at last
khafd, " the concealed (mysterious)/' A person
asked the lord Shaikh Bayezid Bastdmi:l " Which is
'' the great name of God ?" The Shaikh answered :
" Communicate thou to me his least name, that I
" may give thee in return his greatest:" that is to
say, the names of God are all great.

The sagacious say : Every era is the epoch of the
fame and dominion of a name, and when this epoch
expires, it becomes concealed under the name which
it had at the epoch of its flourishing state.2

1  Bastam is a town of Khorassan, the native place of Abu Yezid Taifer
ben Issa, one of the most celebrated Sufis of Persia.   He had inherited
the frock of another mystical personage, called Habib Ajemi.    Bastami
attained the supreme degree of spirituality—perfect union with God.  He
occasionally branched out into all the enthusiasm imaginable, saying
that God was with him and near him, nay in the sleeve of his garment;
and then again he came at times into the regular order of piety and
devotion, hoping that God would forgive him his sins, and let his latter
end be that of the righteous.   It is said of him (see the thi*£l Majalis,
*' conference," of Sadi) that, having once called out to God for union
with the supreme Being, he heard the voice from above: " Abu Yezid, thy
" thou is still with thee ; if thou wilt come to me, abandon thyself and
" come."   He died in the year of the Hejira 261 (A. D. 874). — (See
Transact, of the Lit. Soc. of Bombay, vol. I. p. 100; Malcolm's Hist,
of Persia, p. 395; Pend nameh, edit, and transl. by Silvestre de Sacy,
p. 231.)

2  Silvestre de Sacy, in the translation of a part of the Definitions of
Jorjani, gives the following note as translated from the Persian (see ./Voices
et Extraits des MSS., vol. X. p. 67): " The Siifis declare that every time
" is the turn of the manifestation of a name (divine); when the turn of
" this name is terminated, it conceals itself under another name, for
** which the turn of denomination is arrived.   The periods of the seven