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The Tarjuman al-Ashwaq, by Ibn al-Arabi, tr. Reynold A. Nicholson, [1911], at


1. O garden of the valley, answer the lady of the preserve and her who hath shining front-teeth, O garden of the valley

2. And let a little of thy shades o’ershadow her for a short time until she be settled in the meeting-place.

3. And her tents be pitched in thy midst. Then thou wilt have as much as thou wishest of dew to feed the tender shoots,

4. And as much as thou wishest of showers and the moisture of clouds passing over her bán trees at eve and morn,

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5. And as much as thou wishest of dense shade and fruit, delicious to the gatherer, swaying the bough (on which it hangs),

6. And of those who seek Zarúd and its sands, and of those who chant as they drive the camels from behind, and of those who march in front and lead them well.


1. 'O garden of the valley,' in reference to the bush in which the Divine light appeared to Moses.

'The lady of the preserve,' i.e. the reality of Moses, signifying a spiritual degree which the gnostic inherited from Moses. 'Preserve' denotes the station of Glory unattainable by his essence.

'Shining front-teeth,' because he is in the station of converse and speech (###).

2. 'Until she be settled,' i.e. until the place be ready for her reception, so that she may speak from his essence to his essence without regard to anything extraneous.

3. 'Dew to feed the tender shoots,' i.e. gracious sorts of knowledge which nourish the human organism.

6. 'Zarúd and its sands,' i.e. elusive sorts of knowledge which are not to be apprehended save in moments of ecstasy.

'And of those who chant,' etc. The ḥádí who drives the camels from behind typifies that which comes with fear and chiding and menaces, while the ḥádí who goes in front of the camels typifies that which comes with hope and joy and kindness. The former is the servant of the Wrathful (###), and the latter is the servant of the Merciful (###).

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