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According to Jami, Unification consists in making the heart single--that is, in purifying and divesting it of attachment to aught except God, both in respect of desire and will and also as regards knowledge and gnosis. The mystic's desire and will should be severed from all things which are desired and willed; all objects of knowledge and understanding should be removed from his intellectual vision. His thoughts should be directed solely towards God, he should not be conscious of anything besides.

So long as he is a captive in the snare of passion and lust, it is hard for him to maintain this relation to God, but when the subtle influence of that attraction becomes manifest in him, expelling preoccupation with objects of sense and cognition from his inward being, delight in that divine communion prevails over bodily pleasures and spiritual joys; the painful task of self-mortification is ended, and the sweetness of contemplation enravishes his soul.

When the sincere aspirant perceives in himself the beginning of this attraction, which is delight in the recollection of God, let him fix his whole mind on fostering and strengthening it, let him keep himself aloof from whatsoever is incompatible with it, and deem that even though he were to devote an eternity to cultivating that communion, he would have done nothing and would not have discharged his duty as he ought.

"Love thrilled the chord of love in my soul's lute,
And changed me all to love from head to foot.
'Twas but a moment's touch, yet shall Time ever
To me the debt of thanksgiving impute."

It is an axiom of the Sufis that what is not in a man he cannot know. The gnostic--Man par excellence--could not know God and all the mysteries of the universe, unless he found them in himself. He is the microcosm, 'a copy made in the image of God,' 'the eye of the world whereby God sees His own works.' In knowing himself as he really is, he knows God, and he knows himself through God, who is nearer to everything than its knowledge of itself. Knowledge of God precedes, and is the cause of, self-knowledge.

Gnosis, then, is unification, realisation of the fact that the appearance of 'otherness' beside Oneness is a false and deluding dream. Gnosis lays this spectre, which haunts unenlightened men all their lives; which rises, like a wall of utter darkness, between them and God. Gnosis proclaims that 'I' is a figure of speech, and that one cannot truly refer any will, feeling, thought, or action to one's self.

Niffari heard the divine voice saying to him:

"When thou regardest thyself as existent and dost not regard Me as the Cause of thy existence, I veil My face and thine own face appears to thee. Therefore consider what is displayed to thee, and what is hidden from thee!"

[If a man regards himself as existing through God, that which is of God in him predominates over the phenomenal element and makes it pass away, so that he sees nothing but God. If, on the contrary, he regards himself as having an independent existence, his unreal egoism is displayed to him and the reality of God becomes hidden from him.]

"Regard neither My displaying nor that which is displayed, else thou wilt laugh and weep; and when thou laughest and weepest, thou art thine, not Mine."

[He who regards the act of divine revelation is guilty of polytheism, since revelation involves both a revealing subject and a revealed object; and he who regards the revealed object which is part of the created universe, regards something other than God. Laughter signifies joy for what you have gained, and weeping denotes grief for what you have lost. Both are selfish actions. The gnostic neither laughs nor weeps.]

"If thou dost not put behind thee all that I have displayed and am displaying, thou wilt not prosper; and unless thou prosper, thou wilt not become concentrated upon Me."

[Prosperity is true belief in God, which requires complete abstraction from created things.]

Logically, these doctrines annul every moral and religious law. In the gnostic's vision there are no divine rewards and punishments, no human standards of right and wrong. For him, the written word of God has been abrogated by a direct and intimate revelation.

"I do not say," exclaimed Abu ’l-Hasan Khurqani, "that Paradise and Hell are non-existent, but I say that they are nothing to me, because God created them both, and there is no room for any created object in the place where I am."

From this standpoint all types of religion are equal, and Islam is no better than idolatry. It does not matter what creed a man professes or what rites he performs.

"The true mosque in a pure and holy heart
Is builded: there let all men worship God;
For there He dwells, not in a mosque of stone."

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