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


1. Ṭayba hath a gazelle from whose witching eye (glances like) the edge of a keen blade are drawn,

2. And at ‘Arafát I perceived what she desired and I was not patient,

3. And on the night of Jam‘ we had union with her, such as is mentioned in the proverb.

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4. The girl's oath is false: do not confide in that which betrays.

5. The wish I gained at Miná, would that it might continue to the last hour of my life!

6. In La‘la‘ I was transported with love for her who displays to thee the splendour of the bright moon.

7. She shot Ráma and inclined to dalliance at aṣ-Ṣabá and removed the interdiction at al-Hájir.

8. And she watched a lightning-gleam over Báriq with a glance swifter than a thought that passes in the mind.

9. And the waters of al-Ghaḍá were diminished by a blazing fire which passion kindled within his ribs.

10. And she appeared at the bán tree of an-Naqá and chose (for her adornment) the choicest of its superb hidden pearls.

11. And at Dhát al-Aḍá she turned backward in dread of the lurking lion.

12, At Dhú Salam she surrendered my life-blood to her murderous languishing glance.

13. She stood on guard at the guarded pasture and bent at the sand-bend, swayed by her all-cancelling decisive resolution.

14. And at ‘Álij she managed her affair (in such a way) that she might escape from the claw of the bird.

15. Her Khawarnaq rends the sky and towers beyond the vision of the observer.


1. 'Ṭayba (Medina) hath a gazelle,' referring to a Muḥammadan degree (###), i.e. a spiritual presence belonging to the station of Muḥammad.

3. 'On the night of Jam‘': he says, 'we abode in the station of proximity (###) and He concentrated me upon myself' (###).

'In the proverb,' namely, 'He did not salute until he bade farewell' (###), i.e. they parted as soon as they met.

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4. He says, 'Put no trust in an Attribute that is not self-subsistent and depends on One who may not always accomplish its desires.'

7. 'She shot Ráma,' i.e. she shot that which she was seeking (###), because she regarded the thing as being the opposite of what it was and of what she believed it to be.

'And inclined to dalliance at aṣ-Ṣabá,' i.e. she desired to manifest herself.

8. 'A lightning-gleam,' i.e. a locks of manifestation for the Essence.

10. 'And chose,' etc., i.e. she revealed herself in the most lovely shape.

11. 'Dhát al-Aḍá,' i.e. the place of illumination.

'She turned backward,' etc., i.e. she returned to her natural world for fear that that fierce light should consume her.

12. Gnostics are annihilated by their vision of the Truth, but this does not happen to the vulgar, because they lack knowledge of themselves.

13. 'The guarded pasture,' i.e. the station of Divine glory.

'Bent,' i.e. inclined with Divine mercy. This refers to her investing herself with Divine qualities (###).

14. 'That she might escape,' etc., i.e. she was unwilling to receive from the spirits, for she wished to receive only from God, by intuitive feeling (###), not by cognition (###). God sometimes bestows His gifts by the mediation of the exalted spirits, and sometimes immediately.

15. 'Her Khawarnaq,' i.e. the seat of her kingdom.

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