Sa'di, The Bustan
Sa'di, The Bustan
In the name of the Lord lifecreating!
The Wise One speechcreating within the tongue!
The Lord, the giver, handseizing!
Merciful, sinforgiving, excuseaccepting!
A King such that whosoever turned away his head from His door
Found not any respect at the doors to which he went,
The heads of kings, neckexalting,
Are at His court, on the ground of supplication.
He does not instantly seize the froward;
He does not drive away with violence those excusebringing.
And though He becomes angry at bad conduct,
When thou didst return He canceled the past circumstance in the book of sins.
The two worlds (this and the next) are like a drop in the sea of His knowledge;
He sees a crime, but in mercy covers it with a screen.
If a person seeks a quarrel with his father,
Doubtless the father becomes very angry.
And if a relation be not satisfied with a relation on account of bad conduct,
He drives him from before him, like strangers.
And if the clever slave is not of use,
The master holds him not dear,
And if thou art kind to friends,
The friend will fly from thee to the distance of a league.
And if a soldier abandons service,
The king armyleading becomes quit of him.
But the Lord of high and low
Shuts not the door of food on any one, on account of his sin.
The embroidered leather surface of the earth is His common table;
At this open table, whether enemy or friend--what matter ?
And if He had hastened against one tyrannypracticing
Who would have obtained safety from the hand of His violence ?
His nature is free from suspicion of opposition and similitude;
His kingdom independent of the devotion of jinn and mankind.
The servant of His order every thing and person:
The son of Adam, and fowl, and ant, and fly.
He spreads so wide a tray of liberality,
That the Simurgh in the mountains of Kaf enjoys a portion.
Grace and liberality diffusing, and work executing;
Because He is the Possessor of Creation and Knower of secrets.
Grandeur and egotism are proper for Him,
Whose kingdom is ancient and nature independent.
He places the crown of fortune on the head of one;
He brings another from a throne to the dust.
This one has the cap of GoodFortune on his head;
That one the blanket of Misfortune on his body.
He makes a fire, a rosegarden for Ibrahim;
He takes a crowd, from the waters of the Nile to the fire of Hell.
If that making the fire a rosegarden--it is the written order of His beneficence;
And if this---the destruction of Pharaoh in the Nile--it is the signmanual of His order.
Behind the screen He sees bad acts:
By His own favor He covers them with a veil.
If with threatening He draws forth the sharp sword of Command,
The Cherubim will remain deaf and dumb.
And if from the tray of Liberality He gives victuals to be carried home,
'Azazil [i.e., Satan] will say, "I may carry away a good portion."
At the Court of His grace and greatness
The Great Ones have put greatness out of their heads.
In mercy, near to those who are distressed:
A hearer of the prayer of those supplicationmaking.
Concerning circumstances not yet come to pass, His knowledge penetrating;
As to secrets unspoken, His grace informed.
By power, the Guardian of high (sky) and low (earth),
The Lord of the Court of the day of reckoning (Judgment day).
The back of a person is not free from obedience to Him (it must bend);
On His word there is not room for the finger of a person (in slander).
The ancient doer of good, goodapproving;
With the reed of Destiny, in the womb, picturepainting.
from the east to the west, the moon and sun
He put into motion; and spread the firmament on the water.
The earth, from distress of earthquake, became stupefied;
On its skirt He drove down a mountain as a nail.
He gives to the seed of man a form like a pari;
Who has made a painting on the water?
He places the ruby and the turquoise in the backbone of the rock;
The red rose, on the branch of green color.
From the cloud He casts a drop toward the ocean;
From the backbone of the father He brings the seed into the womb.
From that drop He makes an incomparable pearl;
And from this He makes a form of man like the lofty cypress.
The knowledge of a single atom is not hidden from Him,
To whom the evident and the hidden are one.
He prepares the daily food of the snake and the ant;
Although they are without hands and feet, and strength.
By His order He portrayed existence from nonexistence;
Who, except He, knows how to make the existing from the nonexisting?
Another time He takes away creation to the concealment of nonexistence,
And thence conveys it to the plain of the place of assembling the Resurrection.
The people of the world are agreed to His divine origin;
Overpowered in respect to the substance of His essence.
The people discovered not what was beyond His majesty;
The vision discovered not the extent of His power.
The bird of Fancy flies not to the summit of His nature;
The power of the intellect arrives not at the skirt of His description.
In this whirlpool a thousand ships of reason foundered,
In such a way that not a plank was found on the marge.
Many nights I sat lost in this journey of thought of God,
When suddenly terror seized my sleeve, saying, "Get up!"
The knowledge of the King is the encircler of the wide plain of creation;
Thy conjecture becomes not the encircler of Him.
Genius reaches not to the substance of His nature;
Thought reaches not to the profundity of His qualities.
One can attain to the Arab poet, Suhban, in eloquence;
But one can not reach to the substance of God without equal.
Because the immature ones have on this road urged the steed of thought,
At the words "la ahsa," they have wearied of the pace.
One can not gallop a steed in every place,
Places there are where it is proper to cast the shield.
And if a traveler becomes acquainted with the secret of God
They will shut on him the door of returning to the world.
In this banquet of the mystery of God they give a cup of the wine of the love of God to that one,
To whom they give a draught of senselessness that he may not utter the mystery of God.
The wise man fears this sea of blood the mystery of God,
Out of which no one has taken the bark of his life.
Of this hawk, the eye is sewn up blind to the knowledge of God;
Of the holy man, the eyes are open to the knowledge of God; and feathers of light to the world burned.
No one went to the buried treasure of Karun;
And if he found a way, he found not a way out of it.
If thou art a seeker, who over this ground of the knowledge of God dost travel,
First thou shouldst pluck up the foot of the steed of returning;
Shouldst reflect, in the mirror of the mind;
Shouldst acquire purity by degrees.
Possibly the perfume of the love of God makes thee intoxicated;
Makes thee a seeker of the Covenant-- "Am I your God?"
With the foot of search thou dost travel to that place;
And thence thou dost fly with the wing of the love of God.
Truth tears the curtains of fancy;
There remains not a lofty curtain, save the glory of God.
Again for the steed of reason there is no running;
Astonishment will seize its rein, saying, "Stand!"
In this sea of God only the manguardian [Mohammed] went:
That one became lost, who went not behind the inviter [Mohammed].
Those persons who have turned back from this road
Traveled much, and are distressed.
That person who chooses the way opposite to the Prophet
Will never arrive at the stage of his journey.
Oh Sadi! think not that the path of purity
One can travel, except behind the Chosen One.
Generous of dispositions, beautiful of natures!
The Prophet of creatures, the Intercessor of nations!
The Imam of the prophets, the Leader of the road!
The faithful of God, the place of descent of the Angel Jibra'il!
The Intercessor of mortals, the Lord of raising and dispersing!
The Imam of the guides, the Chief of the court of Assembling!
The Speaker, whose Mount Sinai is the celestial sphere;
All lights are the rays of his light.
The orphan who, the Qur'an uncompleted,
Washed the library of so many religions,
When anger drew forth his sword of terror,
Struck, by a miracle, the waist of the moon in two halves.
When his fame fell in the mouths of the people of the world
An earthquake occurred in the court of Kisri.
By the words-- lailaha illallah he broke into small pieces the idol Lat;
For the honor of religion he took away the reputation of the idol ''Uzzah.
He brought not forth the dust of the idols Lat and 'Uzza only;
But made the Old Testament and Gospel obsolete.
One night he sate on the beast Burak; he passed beyond the Heavens:
In majesty and grandeur he exceeded the angels.
So impetuous, he urged his steed into the plain of propinquity to God,
While Jibra'il remained behind him, at the tree of paradise.
The Chief of the sacred house spoke to him,
Saying: "Oh, bearer of the Divine Revelation! move proudly higher.
When thou didst find me sincere in friendship,
Why didst thou twist the reins from my love?"
Jibra'il said: "The power to move higher was not to me:
I remained here because the power of wing remained not to me.
If I fly one hair's breadth higher,
The effulgence of splendor will burn my feathers."
On account of sins a person remains not in restraint
Who has such a Lord as guide.
What acceptable praise may I say to thee?
Oh, Prophet of Mortals! peace be on thee!
May the benedictions of angels be on thy soul!
May they be on thy companions and followers!
First AbuBakr, the old disciple;
'Umar, grasp on the convolution of the contumacious demon;
The wise 'Usman, night, alivekeeping;
The fourth 'AliShan, Duldul, riding.
Oh God! by the right of the sons of Fatima,
May I, on the word of faith, conclude my life!
If thou dost reject my claim, or if thou dost accept,
I, and the hand, and the skirt of the offspring of the Prophet are together.
Oh chief happyfooted! what loss occurs
Of thy exalted dignity, at the court of the Living One,
That there are a few beggars of the tribe,
Humble companions, guests, at the House of Paradise?
God praised and honored thee, O Mohammed!
Jabra'il performed the groundkiss of thy worth.
The lofty sky, before thy worth, is ashamed,
Thou created, and man yet water and clay.
Thou from the first, the essence of the existence of man;
Whatever else became existent is an offshoot from thee.
I know not what words I may say to thee,
Who art higher than what I say of thee.
To thee the honor of-- "but for thee"---is sufficient grandeur;
Thy praise in the verse of the Koran-- " t?h? wa yasin " --- is sufficient.
What praise may the imperfect Sadi make?
Oh Prophet! on thee be benedictions and safety!
In the extremes of the world I wandered much;
With every one I passed my time.
From every corner I found pleasure;
From every harvest I obtained an ear of corn.
Like the pure ones of Shiraz of dustlike disposition,
I saw not one.--May mercy be on this pure soil of Shiraz!
The cultivating of friendship of the men of this pure soil
Drew away my heart from Syria and Turkey.
I said to my heart: "From Egypt they bring sugar;
They take it as a present to friends."
From all that garden or the world I was loath
To go emptyhanded to my friends.
If my hand be empty of that sugar,
There are words sweeter than sugar--
Not that sugar that men apparently enjoy;
But that which the lords of truth take away on paper.
May the WorldCreator have mercy on thee!
Whatever more I may say is empty talk and wind.
The beneficences of God are not contained in the imagination;
What service does the tongue of praise offer?
Oh God, do thou--this King (AbuBakr, son of Sad), the poor man's friend,
Since the ease of the people is in his protection--
Keep long established over the head of the people;
By the grace of devotion, keep his heart alive.
Keep his tree of hope fruitful;
His head green, and his face, with mercy, fair.
Oh Sadi! go not in the way of dissimulation;
If thou hast honesty, bring and come.
Thou art a stagerecognizer, and the King a road traveler:
Thou art a speaker of truth; and the King the hearer of truths.
What necessity that nine thrones of the sky
Thou dost place below the foot of the King KizilArsalan.
Say not: Place thy foot of honor on the Heavens.
Say: Place the face of sincerity in the dust.
Place, in devotion, the face on the threshold of God;
Because this is the highway of the righteous.
If thou (AbuBakr) art a slave of God, place thy head on this door of God;
Place from off thy head the cap of lordship.
At the Court of the Order giver possessed of Majesty,
Bewail, like a dervish, before a rich and powerful man.
When thou dost perform thy devotions, put not on the kingly raiment;
Like the poor dervish, bring forth a cry,
Saying: "O Omnipotent One! Thou art powerful;
Thou art strong; Thou art the dervishcherisher.
I (AbuBakr) am neither a monarch nor an ordergiver;
I am one of the beggars of this Court.
What springs forth from the power of my conduct,
Unless the power of Thy grace is my friend?
Give to me the means of liberality and goodness;
And if not--what goodness can come from me to any one?
O God! keep me on the work of goodness;
Otherwise, no work can come from me."
At night, like the beggars, pray with ardor,
If, by day, thou dost exercise sovereignty.
The obstinate ones are at thy door, loingirt;
Thou shouldst be thus--thy head on the threshold of devotion.
Oh, excellent!--for us slaves, the Lord God;
For the lord a slave, dutyperforming.
They relate a story of the great men of the faith,
Recognizer of the truth of the essence of truth,
As follows: A pious man sate on a panther;
Snake in hand, he urged his long, pleasantpaced steed.
One said to him: "Oh, man of the way of God!
Guide me to this road by which thou didst go.
What didst thou, that the rending animal became obedient to thee?
That the sealring of good fortune went to thy name?"
He said: "If the panther and snake be submissive to me,
And if also the elephant and vulturebe not astonished.
Do thou also from the order of the Ruler twist not thy neck,
So that no one, from thy order, may twist his neck."
When the ruler is obedient to God,
God is his Protector and friend.
It is impossible when He loves thee
That He will leave thee in the power of an enemy.
This is the road, and turn not thy face from the way;
Place thy foot on this road and obtain the object which thou dost desire.
Advice of a person is profitable to a person to him,
To whom the saying of Sadi is agreeable.
I have heard that, at the time of the agony of the soul,
King Naushiravan the Just thus spoke to Hurmuz, his son,
Saying: "Be observant of the heart of the poor;
Be not in the desire of thy own ease.
A person rests not within thy territory
When thou dost seek thy own ease and no more.
In the opinion of the wise it is not approved--
The shepherd asleep, and the wolf among the sheep.
Go: protect the poor and needy one,
Because the king is the crownholder for the sake of his subjects.
The subject is like the root, and the king the tree;
Oh son! the tree is strong by reason of the root.
So long as thou canst, wound not the heart of the people;
But if thou dost--thou dost pluck up thy own roots.
If a straight road of safety is necessary for thee--
The way of the pious is hope and fear.
The disposition of man is toward wisdom,
In the hope of goodness, and fear of wickedness."
If thou didst find these two doors in the King,
Thou didst obtain shelter in the territory of his kingdom.
The King brings a gift to the hopeful one,
In hope of the gift of pardon of the Creator of the World.
The injury of persons is not pleasing to the king,
Who fears lest injury should come to his kingdom.
And if there is not this disposition in his nature
There is not the perfume of ease in that territory.
If thou art footbound (by wife and family), accept contentment;
But if thou art a single horseman (solitary), take thy own desire.
Seek not plenteousness in that land and region,
Where thou dost see the subjects of the king sorrowful.
Fear not the proud, haughty ones;
Fear that one who fears God.
In a dream, he sees the territory of another populous,
Who keeps the heart of the people of his country distressed.
From violence come ruin and illfame;
The prudent man reaches to the profundity of this speech.
It is not proper with injustice to slay the peasants,
Who are the shelter and support of the kingdom.
For thy own sake preserve the villagers;
Because the laborer of happy heart executes more work for his master.
It is not manliness to do ill to that one,
from whom thou mayst have experienced much benefit in tribute."
I have heard that King Khosru said to his son Shirwiya
At that time when his eyes slept from seeing--
In that state be, so that whatever resolution thou mayst make
Thou mayst consider the peace of the peasant.
Be sure, so long as thou dost not turn thy head from equity and judgment,
That men will not turn aside their feet from thy power.
The peasant flies from the tyrant;
He makes his bad repute a stock story in the world.
Much time passes not, that his own foundation,
That one plucked up, who laid a bad foundation.
The enemy, skillful with the sword, lays waste,
Not so much as the smoke of the heart of an old woman.
The lamp of grief that the widowwoman lighted up--
Thou mayst often have seen that it burned a city.
Who in the world is more favored than that one
Who with justice, in sovereignty, lived?
When the time of his traveling from this world arrives,
The people of the world send mercy to his tomb.
"Since bad and good men pass away,
It is best indeed that they connect thy name with goodness and bless thee.
Appoint the Godfearing one over the peasant;
Because, the abstinent one is the architect of the country.
That livereater of the people is thy enemy,
Who seeks thy profit, in the injury of the people.
Government is a fault in the hands of those persons,
From whose power, the hands of the people are uplifted in prayer before God.
The cherisher of good sees not evil;
When thou dost cherish evil thou art the enemy of thy own life.
Exercise not retribution against the despoiler by confiscation of his property;
But it is proper to bring forth to destroy his root from the foundation.
Exercise not patience with the agent of the friend of tyranny;
Since, on account of his fatness (from extortion), it is proper to flay his skin.
It is also proper, at first, to cut off the wolf's head,
Not at the time when he tore in pieces the sheep of men."
How well said the captive merchant
When the robbers gathered around him with arrows!--
Inasmuch as courage comes from highwaymen,
Whether the men of the army, or a troop of women, what matter?"
The great king who injured the merchants
Shut the door of wellbeing on the people of the city and the army.
How many wise men again go there
When they hear the rumor of bad custom?
Are a good name and favorable reception necessary to thee?--
Hold in esteem merchants and envoys.
Merchants heartily cherish travelers,
Because they carry their good name to the world.
That kingdom soon becomes ruined
From which the injured heart becomes a traveler.
Be the acquaintance of the foreigner, and friend of the traveler,
Because the traveler is one who hawks about a good name.
Hold dear the guest, and precious the traveler;
But also be on guard from injury from them.
To beware of the stranger is good;
Because, possibly, he may be an enemy in the guise of a friend.
Advance the rank of thy own old friends;
Because treachery never comes from the cherished one.
When thy servant becomes old,
Forget not the right of his years.
If old age has bound the hand of his service--
Yet thou hast power, in respect to liberality.
To accomplish the desire of the hopeful
Is better than to break the bonds of a thousand fettered ones.
If the pillar of the office of the scribe
Balls, he cuts not the rope of hope.
The just monarch, with his subjects,
Becomes angry like a father with a son.
Sometimes he strikes him so that he becomes sorrowful;
Sometimes he makes water flow from his pure eyes.
When thou dost exercise gentleness, the enemy becomes bold;
But if thou art an anvil, he becomes wearied of thee.
Severity and mildness together are best,
Like the veinstriker (bleeder), who is surgeon and plaster placer.
Be generous, and pleasanttempered, and forgiving;
Even as God scatters favor over thee, do thou scatter over the people.
No one came into the world who remained,
Save that one whose good name remained.
That one died not, after whom there remained--
Bridge, or masjid, or khan, or guesthouse.
Every one behind whom a token remained not--
The tree of his existence brought not forth fruit.
If he departed from this world and the marks of his well doing remained not,
It is not fit to chant after his death-- "Al hamd!"
When thou dost wish that thy name may be eternal,
Conceal not the good name of the great ones.
After thy own time call to mind that same descriptive picture
That, after the age of former kings, thou didst behold.
One took away a good name from the world;
The bad custom of the other remained behind him forever.
With the ear of approval, listen not to a person's injury;
But if the speech comes, probe its depth.
Accept the excuse of forgetfulness of the sinner;
When he asks for protection, give protection.
If a sinner comes to thy shelter,
It is not proper to slay him at the first fault.
When once they uttered advice, and the sinner heard not;
Punish him, the second time, with imprisonment and bonds.
And if advice and bonds are of no advantage to him,
He is an impure tree; pluck up his roots.
When anger comes to thee, on account of a person's crime,
Reflect much on his punishment;
Because it is easy to break the ruby of Badakhshan.
Broken--it is not possible to fasten it together again.
I heard that King Jamshid, of happy nature,
Wrote on a stone, at a fountainhead:
At this fountain many like us took rest;
They departed in death, just as the eyes twinkled.
With manliness and force they took the world;
But they took it not with themselves to the tomb.
They departed, and each one reaped what he sowed:
There remained only good and bad fame."
When thou hast power over an enemy,
Injure him not; because this is indeed sufficient sorrow to him.
A living enemy, headrevolving about thee in desire of thy blood,
Is better than his lifeblood revolving about thy neck.
I heard that Darius, of August family,
Became separated, on a huntingday, from his retinue;
A herdsman came running toward him:
Darius, of happy sect, said to his heart:
Perhaps this is an enemy who has come to battle:
From a distance I will pierce him with a white poplar arrow."
He adjusted the royal bow to the bowstring:
He desired in a moment to make his existence nonexistence.
The herdsman said: "Oh, Lord of Iran and Turan!--
May the evil eye be far from thy time!--
I am he who cherishes the King's horses;
In this meadow I am in thy service."
The heart of the King, which had gone in fear, returned to its place.
He laughed and said: "O one of contemptible judgment!
The auspicious angel Jibra'il assisted thee;
Otherwise, I had brought the bowstring to the ear."
The guardian of the landpastured laughed and said:
"It is not proper to conceal advice from a benefactor;
It is not laudable deliberation, nor good judgment,
That the King knows not an enemy from a friend.
The condition of living in greatness is such
That thou shouldst know each humble person--who he is.
Thou hast many times seen me in the presence:
Thou hast asked me concerning the herd of horses and the meadow.
Now in love I returned before thee:
Thou dost not again recognize me from an enemy.
O renowned monarch! I am powerful;
Because I can bring a particular horse out of a hundred thousand.
By reason of wisdom and judgment, I have the guardianship of the horses;
Thou also shouldst keep thy own herd permanent."
When Darius heard this counsel from the man
He spoke fairly to him, and did him kindness.
Darius kept going and saying in his shame--
It will be proper to write this advice on the heart.
On account of anarchy there may be sorrow in that throne and country
When the deliberation of the king may be less than that of the shepherd.
How mayst thou hear the lament of one crying for justice--
The curtain of thy bedplace at Saturn?
So sleep that the lamentation may come to thy ear
If the crier for justice brings forth a shout.
Who complains of the tyrant who is in thy time,
When every violence that he commits is thy violence?
The dog tore not the skirt of one of a Karawan,
But the ignorant villager, who cherished the dog.
Oh Sadi! thou camest boldly into speech:
When the sharp sword of true speech is at thy hand, be victorious.
Say what thou dost know; because truth spoken is well:
Thou art not a bribetaker, nor a blandishmentgiver.
Bind avarice to thyself, but then wash the book of philosophy;
Bid farewell to avarice, and say whatever thou dost desire.
A certain neckexalting one (a king) in Media came to know
That a wretched one beneath an arch kept saying:
Thou even art hopeful at the door of God:
Then accomplish the hope of those doorsitting."
Thou dost not wish that thy heart may be sorrowful--
Bring forth from fetters the heart of the sorrowing ones.
The distress of the heart of the one justiceseeking
Casts a king from his kingdom.
Thou hast slept cool half a day in the retired place (harem);
Say to the foreigner, burn in the heat outside.
God is the taker of justice for that person
Who can not ask for justice from a king
One of the great ones, possessed of discretion,
Tells a story of the son of King 'Abdul'Aziz,
Saying: he had a ringstone set in a ring,
In respect to the value of which the Court jeweler was confounded.
At night, thou wouldst say it is the orb, worldilluminating;
A glittering star it was, in light like the day.
By chance a droughtyear occurred,
When the fullmoon of the face of men became the newmoon.
When he saw not ease and strength in man,
He considered it not manliness to be himself at ease.
When a person sees poison in the jaws of men,
How will the sweet water pass to his throat?
He ordered: they sold the ringstone for silver
Because pity came to him, on account of the poor and orphan.
He gave its value, in spoil, ill one week:
He gave to the poor, and needy, and necessitous.
Those reproachmaking fell on him,
Saying: "Such a ring will not again come to thy hand."
I heard that he said, and the rain of tears
Ran down, like wax, on his cheeks--
As follows: "Ugly is the ornament on a monarch,
The heart of a citizen afflicted with powerlessness;
A ring without a stone is fit for me:
The heart of a sorrowful populace is not fit for me."
If a relation of the enemy be friendly to thee,
Beware; be not secure of craftiness.
Because his heart becomes torn for vengeance against thee.
When memory of the love of his own relation comes to him.
Consider not the sweet words of an enemy;
For it is possible there is poison in the honey.
That one took his life safe from the trouble of the enemy
Who reckoned friends as enemies.
That knave preserves the pearl in his purse,
Who considers all people pursecuts.
The soldier who is an offender against the Amir,
So long as thou canst--take not into service.
He knew not gratitude toward his own chief;
He knows not thee also: be afraid of his deceit.
Hold him not strong as to oath and covenant;
Appoint a secret watchman over him.
Make long the tether of the aspirant;
Break it not, lest thou shouldst not see him again.
When, in battle and siege, the enemy's country
Thou seizest--consign it to the prisoners.
Because when a captive plunges his teeth in blood,
He drinks blood from the tyrant's throat.
When thou pluckest away a territory from the enemy's clutch,
Keep the peasantry in more order than he.
For, if he beats open the door of conflict,
The people will pluck out the essence of his brain.
But if thou causest injury to the citizens,
Shut not vainly the citygate in the enemy's face.
Say not: "The enemy, swordstriking, is at the gate!"
When the enemy's partner is within the city.
Essay with deliberation battle with the enemy;
Reflect on counsel; and conceal thy resolution.
Reveal not the secret to every one;
For I have seen many a cupsharer a spy.
Sikander, who waged war with the Easterns,
Kept, they say, his tentdoor toward the west.
When Bahman wished to go to Zawulistan,
He cast a rumor of his going to the left, and went to the right.
If one, besides thee, knows what thy resolve is--
It is fit to weep over that judgment, and knowledge, and resolution.
Exercise liberality--neither conflict nor rancor--
That thou mayst bring a world beneath thy signetring.
When a work prospers through courtesy and pleasantness,
What need of severity and arrogance?
Thou wishest not that thy heart should be sorrowful?
Bring forth from bondage the hearts of those sorrowful.
The army is not powerful by the arm;
Go; ask a blessing from the feeble.
The prayer of the hopeful weak ones
Is of more avail than the manly arm.
Whosoever takes to the dervish his request for aid,
If he strikes at Firidun, he would overcome him.
If thou art wise, incline to truth;
For truth, not the semblance, remains in its place.
To whomsoever there was neither knowledge nor liberality nor piety--
In his form there was no reality.
Beneath the clay sleeps at ease that one
By whom men sleep tranquil at heart.
Suffer thy own grief in life; for the relation,
Through his own avarice, busies not himself with one dead.
Give now gold and silver which is thine;
For after thy death it is out of thy command.
Thou wishest not that thou shouldst be distressed in heart?
Put not out of thy heart those distressed.
Scatter treasures in alms today, without delay;
For tomorrow the key is not in thy hand.
Take away with thy self thy own roadprovisions;
For compassion after death comes from neither son nor wife.
That one takes away the ball of empire from this world
Who took, with himself, a portion to the future world
With sympathy, like my fingertip,
No one in the world scratches my back.
Place now, on the palm of the hand, whatever there is;
Lest that, tomorrow (the Judgmentday), thou shouldst with the teeth bite the back of the hand.
Strive as to covering the shame of the dervish,
That the veil of God may be thy secretconcealer.
Turn not the foreigner portionless from thy door,
Lest that thou shouldst become a wanderer in beggary at doors.
The great one causes alms to reach the indigent;
For he fears that he may become necessitous (as to the need of others).
Look into the state of the heart of those wearied;
For thy heart may, perhaps, one day be broken.
Make the hearts of those dejected happy;
Remember the day of helplessness (the Judgmentday).
Thou art not a beggar at the doors of others;
Drive not, in thanks to God, a beggar from thy door.
Cast protection over the head of the one fatherdead;
Scatter his dust of affliction, and pluck out his thorn.
Knowest thou not how very dejected his state was?
May a rootless tree be ever green?
When thou seest an orphan, head lowered in front from grief,
Give not a kiss to the face of thy own son.
If the orphan weeps, who buys for his consolation?
And if he becomes angry, who leads him back to quietude?
Beware! that he weep not; for the great throne of God
Keeps trembling when the orphan weeps.
Pluck out with kindness the tear from his pure eye;
Scatter with compassion the dust of affliction from his face.
If his (the father's) protection departed from over his head,
Do thou cherish him with thy own protection.
I esteemed my head crownworthy at that time
When I held my head in my father's bosom.
If a fly had sate on my body,
The heart of some would have become distressed.
If now enemies should bear me away captive,
None of my friends is a helper.
For me is acquaintance with the sorrows of orphans,
For in childhood my father departed (in death) from my head.
A certain one plucked out a thorn from an orphan's foot;
The Khujand Chief saw him in a dream:
He was talking and sauntering in the gardens of Paradise,
Saying: "How many roses blossomed from that thorn!"
So long as thou canst, be not free from mercy;
For they bear pity to thee, when thou bearest pity.
When thou hast done a favor, be not selfworshiping,
Saying: "I am a superior, and that other an inferior."
Say not: "The sword of Time has cast him!"
For the sword of Time is yet drawn.
When thou seest a thousand persons prayeruttering for the empire,
Give thanks to God for favors.
For the reason that many men have expectation from thee,
Thou hast expectation at the hand of none.
I have said that liberality is the character of chiefs;
I uttered a mistake--it is the quality of prophets!
I have heard that, one week, a son of the road
Came not to the guesthouse of Ibrahim, the friend of God.
Through his happy disposition, he used not to eat in the morning,
Unless one, foodless, came from the path of travel.
He went out, and looked in every direction;
Glanced in the quarters of the valley; and saw:
One, willowlike, in solitude, in the desert;
His head and hair white with the snow of old age.
For consolation he said to him: "Marhaba!"
Uttered, according to the custom of the liberal, the invitation,
Saying: "Oh pupil of my eyes!
Do me a favor, as to bread and salt."
He said, "Yes"; and sprang up and lifted his feet;
For he knew his temperament--on him be peace!
The guards of the guesthouse of Ibrahim
Placed the abject old man, with respect.
He ordered; and they arranged the table;
All sate around.
When the company began: "Bismi-llah!"
A word from the old man reached not his ear.
He spoke to him, thus: "O old man of ancient days!
I behold not thy truth and heartburning, like old men.
When thou eatest food, is it not the custom
That thou shouldst take the name of the Lord of Victuals?"
He said: "I accept not a religion
Which I have not heard from the old men, fireworshiping."
The prophet of good omen knew
That the old man, of State become ruined, was a Guebre.
He drove him away with contempt when he saw him a stranger to Islam;
For to the pure the filthy is forbidden.
The angel Surosh came from the glorious Omnipotent,
With majesty, reproaching, saying: "Oh, friend of God!
I had for a hundred years given him victuals and life;
Abhorrence of him comes to thee in a moment.
If he takes his adoration to the fire,
Why withdrawest thou thy hand of magnanimity?"
I know not who told me this tale,
That there had been, in the country of Yemen, an ordergiver.
He snatched the ball of empire from those renowned;
For in treasurebestowing there was no equal to him.
One could call him "the Cloud of Liberality,"
For his hand used to scatter money like rain.
No one used to take to him the name of Hatim,
At which mentioning, frenzy used not to go to his head,
Saying: "How much--of the words of that windweigher,
Who has neither country, nor command, nor treasure?"
I heard that he prepared a royal feast,
And harplike entertained the people, in the midst of the banquet.
One opened the door of mention of Hatim;
Another began to utter his praise.
Envy held the man to the desire of revenge;
He appointed one for his blooddevouring,
Saying: "So long as Hatim is in my time,
My name will not go into the world for goodness."
The calamityseeking one took the path to the tribe of Tai,
He set out for the slaying of the young man.
There came before him on the road a young man,
From whom the perfume of affection came up to him:
Good of visage, and wise, and sweet of tongue;
He brought him a guest, that night, to his own abode:
Exercised liberality, and sympathized, and made excuses;
Snatched the enemy's heart by kindness:
Placed the morningkiss on his hands and feet,
Saying: "Stay at ease, a few days, with us."
He said: "I can not here become a resident;
For I have before me an important matter."
He replied: "If thou wilt reveal the matter to me
I will with soul exert myself, like friends of one heart."
He replied: "Oh young man! listen to me;
For I know the generous one is a secretconcealer.
Thou knowest, perhaps, in this land, Hatim,
Who is of happy judgment and good manners?
The King of Yemen has desired his head;
I know not what hatred has arisen between them.
Show me the short path to where he is;
Oh friend! this indeed I look for from thy courtesy."
The youth laughed, saying: " I am Hatim: Behold!
Separate with the sword the head from my body.
When the morning becomes white it is not proper that
Injury should reach thee, or that thou shouldst become disappointed."
When Hatim placed, with nobleness, his head for slaughter,
A cry issued from the young man (the guest).
He fell upon the dust, and leaped to his feet;
Kissed now the dust; now his feet and hands:
Threw down the sword, and placed the quiver on the ground;
Put, like the helpless, his hands on his breast,
Saying: "If I strike a rose on thy body,
I am, in men's sight, a woman, not a man."
He kissed both his eyes, and embraced him;
And took his way thence to Yemen.
Between the two eyebrows of the man, the King
Knew immediately that he had not performed the duty.
He said: "Come; what news hast thou?
Why didst thou not bind his head to thy saddlestrap?
Perhaps a renowned one made an assault against thee;
Thou, through weakness, sustainedst not the fury of the contest?"
The clever youth gave the groundkiss;
Praised the King; and the majesty of his nature,
Saying: "I discovered Hatim, fameseeking,
Skillful, and of pleasant appearance, and of good visage:
Considered him generous and endowed with wisdom;
Regarded him, in manliness, my superior:
The load of his favor made my back bent;
He slew me with the sword of kindness and grace."
Whatever he experienced, from his liberalityhe uttered;
The monarch recited praises on the offspring of Tai:
Gave the envoy goldmoney,
Saying "Liberality is the seal on Hatim's name."
It reaches him, if they give evidence;
Since truth and fame are his fellow travelers.
I have heard that in the time of the Prophet the tribe of Tai
Made not acceptance of the faith of the Qur'an.
The Messenger of good news and the Observer (Mohammed) sent an army;
They took captive a multitude of them.
The Prophet ordered them to slay them with the sword of hate,
Saying: "They are unclean, and of impure religion."
A woman said: "I am Hatim's daughter,
Ask pardon for me from this renowned Ruler (Mohammed):
Oh revered sir! exercise generosity as to my state;
For my lord Hatim was endowed with liberality."
By the command of the Prophet of pure judgment,
They loosed the fetters from her hands and feet:
Drew the sword upon the rest of that tribe,
So that they caused, mercilessly, a torrent of blood to flow.
With weeping the woman said to the swordsman:
"Strike my neck also with all the rest:
I consider not release from fetters, generosity;
I--alone; and my friends in the noose of calamity."
She kept uttering lamentations over the brothers of Tai;
Her voice came to the Prophet's ear.
The rest of that tribe he gave to her,
Saying: "One of true origin never erred!"
From Hatim's storehouse, an old man
Demanded ten diram's weight of sugarcandy.
From the historian I remember news such
That he sent him a sack of sugar.
The wife said from the tent: "What is this?
The old man's need was exactly ten dirams."
The mancherisher of Tai heard this speech;
He laughed, and said: "Oh heart's ease of Hai!
If he demanded what was suitable to his own need, and got it,
Where is the liberality of the offspring of Hatim?"
I have heard that a man experienced housevexation
For a wasp made a nest in his roof.
His wife said: "What thou desirest in respect to them do not,
Lest that they should become scattered from their native country."
The wise man went to his own work;
The wasps began, one day, to sting his wife.
About the door, and roof, and street--the foolish wife
Kept making lamentation. But the husband said:
Oh woman! make not thy face bitter toward men;
Thou didst say: 'Slay not the poor wasps!'"
How may one do good to the bad!
Forbearance to illdoers increases ill.
When thou beholdest a people's injury in a chief,
Cut his throat with a sharp sword.
What dog, in short, is there--for whom they place a victual tray?
Order that they give him a bone.
How well has the old man of the village expressed this proverb:
"The baggageanimal, legstriking, is best under a heavy load."
If the watchman shows mercy,
No one is able to sleep at night for thieves.
In the circle of contest the spearreed
Is more precious than a hundred thousand sugarreeds.
Not every one is worthy of property;
This one requires property; that one, rebuke.
When thou cherishest the cat it takes away the pigeon;
When thou makest the wolf fat it rends Joseph.
The edifice that has not firm foundations--
Make it not lofty; and if thou dost, tremble for it.
How well said Bahram, desertdwelling,
When his thoroughbred, restive steed threw him to the earth,
It is proper to take from the herd another horse
Which it is possible to restrain, if he becomes restive."
O son! bind the Euphrates at lowwater,
For when the torrent is risen it is of no use.
When the filthy wolf comes to thy snare,
Slay; if not, pluck up thy heart from love for the sheep.
From Iblis adoration never comes;
Nor from the bad jewelgoodness into existence.
Give neither place nor opportunity to the malignant one;
The enemy in the pit, and the demon in the glass bottle is best.
Say not: "It is proper to kill this snake with a stick";
Strike when he has his head beneath thy stone.
The pen striker who did ill to his inferiors,
To make, with the sword, his hand a pen is best.
The deliberator who introduces bad regulations
Takes thee, that he may give thee to hellfire.
Say not: "For the country this deliberator is enough";
Call him not deliberator who is unfortunate.
The fortunate one acts upon Sadi's speech,
Because it is the cause of increase of country, and deliberation, and judgment.
Oh happy the time of those distraught in love of Him,
Whether they experience the wound (of separation) or the plaster (of propinquity to Him)!
Beggars from royalty fleeing;
In the hope of union with Him, in beggary, longsuffering.
Time to time they drink the wine of pain (of love for Him);
And if they consider it bitter, they draw breath (are patient).
In the pleasure of wine there is the evil of headsickness;
The thorn is the armorbearer of the rosebranch.
Patience which is in remembrance of Him is not bitter;
For bitterness from a friend's hand is sugar.
His captive desires not release from bonds;
His prey seeks not freedom from the snare.
Sultans of retirement, beggars of Hai!
Stages of God recognizer, foottrace lost.
Intoxicated with the love of the friend (God), reproach enduring;
The camel, intoxicated, more easily bears the load.
How may people find the path to their state?
For, like the water of life, they are in darkness.
Like the holy house (Jerusalem) within--full of towers (pomp);
Withoutthe wall left desolate.
Mothlike, they set fire to themselves;
Silkwormlike, they spin not on themselves a protection.
Mistress in embrace--mistressseeking;
On the streambank, lip dry with thirst.
I say not that as to water they are powerless;
But they are, on the Nile, dropsical.
The love of one, like thyself--of water and clay--
Ravishes patience and heartsease.
In wakefulness--enamored of her cheek and mole;
In sleep--footbound, in thought of her.
In truth, thou places thy head at her feet, in such a way
That thou consider the world, in comparison with her existence, nonexistent.
When thy gold comes not to the eye (of approval) of thy mistress,
Gold and dust appear to thee the same.
To thee--desire for another appears not;
For with her--place for another remains not.
Thou says: "Her lodging is within my eye";
And if thou closest together the eye-- "It is in my heart."
Neither thought of any one, lest thou shouldst become disgraced,
Nor power that thou shouldst, for a moment, become patient.
If she desires thy life, thou places it on the palm of her hand;
And if she puts the sharp sword on thy head, thou places thy head in submission.
When love, whose foundation is on desire,
Is to such a degree tumultexciting and commandissuing,
Hast thou wonder at the travelers of the path of God
That they should be immersed in the sea of truth--
In passion for the Beloved, with soul engaged;
In remembrance of the Friend (God), careless of the world?
In memory of God, they have fed from the world;
So intoxicated with the splendor of the Cupbearer (God) that they have spilled the wine!
It is impossible to effect their cure with medicine;
For none is acquainted with their pain (of love).
From eternity without beginning, to their ear comes: "Am I not your God?"
With clamor, in a shout, they utter: "Yes!"
A crowd--officeholding, cornersitting;
Feet clayey, breath fiery--
Pluck up, with a shout, a mountain from its place;
Keep together, with a cry, a city:
Are windlike, invisible, and swiftmoving;
Are stonelike, silent, but praiseuttering.
In the morning, they weep to such a degree that the water
Washes down from their eyes the collyrium of sleep.
Steed of the body slain, with the great austerity with which they have urged the night;
In the morning, shouting, saying: "They are wearied!"
Night and day, in the sea of frenzy and burning;
From perturbation they know not night from day.
So enamored of the splendor of the figurepainter (God)
That they have no occupation with the beauty of the outward form.
The pious ones gave not their hearts to the covering;
And if a fool gave--he is brainless and fleshless.
That one drank the pure wine of the Unity of God,
Who forgot this world and the next.
I have heard that once upon a time one, beggarborn,
Had affection for one kingborn.
He went, and cherished a vain desire;
Imagination plunged its teeth in desire.
Milestone like, he used not to be free (absent) from his (the prince's) plain;
Bishoplike, at all times, at the side of his horse.
His heart became blood, and the secret remained in his heart;
But his feet, through weeping, remained in the mire of desire.
The guards obtained intelligence of his grief;
They said to him: "Wander not again here!"
A moment, he went; recollection of the friend's face came to him;
Again he pitched his tent, at the head of his friend's street.
A slave broke his head, and hand, and foot,
Saying: "Said we not once to theecome not here?"
Again to him patience and rest remained not;
On account of his friend's face, patience remained not.
Like flies from off the sugar, with violence him
They used to drive away; but with speed he used to return.
One said to him: "Oh, impudent one of insane appearance!
Thou hast wonderful patience as to blows of stick and stone."
He said: "This violence against me is through his tyranny;
It is not proper to complain of a friend's hand.
Behold, I express the breath of friendship
If he holds me friend; or, if enemy,
Expect not, without him, patience from me;
Nay--even with him, repose has no possibility.
Neither the power of patience, nor room for anger;
Neither the possibility of being (stopping), nor the foot of flight.
Say not--turn aside the head from this door of the court;
Though he place my head, like a tentpeg in the tentrope.
Nay--the moth, life given at its friend's foot,
Is better than alive in its dark corner."
He said: "If thou shouldst suffer the wound of his club?"
He replied: "I will fall at his feet, balllike."
He said: "If, with the sword, he cuts off thy head?"
He replied: "This much even I grudge not.
To me--indeed, there is not so much knowledge--
Whether the crown or the axe be at my head.
Display not reproof with me impatient;
For patience appears not in love.
If my eye becomes white like Yakub,
I abandon not hope of seeing Yusuf.
One who is happy with another
Is not vexed with him for every little thing."
One day the youth kissed the prince's stirrup;
He became angry; and turned the rein from him.
He laughed, and said: "Turn not the rein;
For the Sultan turns not away the rein from any.
To me--by thy existence, existence remains not;
To me--in memory of thee, selfworshiping remains not.
If thou observes a crime, reproach me not:
Thou art head brought forth from my collar (of existence) .
I fixed my hand in thy stirrup with that boldness;
For I brought not myself in the account.
I drew the pen on my own name;
Placed my foot on the head of my own desire.
The arrow of that intoxicated eye slays me indeed;
What need that thou should bring thy hand to the sword!
Set fire to the reed, and pass;
So that in the forest neither dry nor green thing may remain."
I have heard that at the chanting of a singer
One of Pari face began to dance.
From the fire of the distracted hearts around her
A candleflame caught in her skirt.
She became troubled in heart and vexed;
One of her lovers said: "What fear?
Oh love! as to thee--the fire burned the skirt;
As to me--it burned, all at once, the harvest (of existence)."
If thou art a lover, express not a breath about thyself;
For it is infidelity to speak of lover and one's self.
I recollect hearing from a knowing old man in this way,
That one, distraught with love, turned his head to the desert.
The father, through separation from him, neither ate nor slept;
They reproached the son; he said:
From that time, when Friend called me one of his own,
Further love for any one remained not to me.
By God! when He showed me His beauty,
Whatever else I beheld appeared to me fancy."
He who turned away from the people became not lost;
For he found again his own lost one (God).
There are beneath the sky shunners of men,
Whom one can call, at once, wild beast and also angel.
Like the angel, they rest not from remembering the King (God);
Like the wild beast they, night and day, shun men.
Strong of arm (by spirituality); but short of hand (by materiality);
Wiseoutwardly mad; sensibleoutwardly intoxicated.
Sometimes tranquil in a corner, religious habitstitching;
Sometimes perplexed in society, religious habitburning.
Neither passion as to themselves; nor solicitude for any one;
Nor place for any one, in the cell of their unitarianism.
Perturbed of reason, confused of sense;
Earstuffed to the word of the adviser.
The duck will not become drowned in the river (of lust);
The samundar! what knows he of the torment of burning?
Empty of hand, men of full stomach (proud);
Desert wanderers, without a Kafila:
They have no expectation of the people's approbation;
For they are approved of God; and that is enough.
Dear ones of God concealed from the people's eye;
Not those waistcordpossessing, clothed in the habit of the dervish.
They are full of fruit, and shady, vinelike;
Are not like us--of black deeds, and blue garmentdyers.
Head plunged in themselves (in reflection), oysterlike;
Not foam (on mouth) gathered, riverlike.
If wisdom be thy friend, be afraid of them (those foam-gathered);
For they are demons in the garb of men.
They are not men indeed of bone and skin;
A true soul is not in every form.
The Sultan (God) is not the purchaser of every slave;
Not beneath every religious garment is there a living man.
If every drop of hail had become a pearl,
The bazaar would have become full of them like small shells.
A person said to a moth: "Oh contemptible one!
Go; take a friend suitable to thyself,
Go on such a path, that thou mayst see the way of hope;
Thou, and the love of the candle is from where to where?
Thou art not the samundar; circle not around the fire;
For, manliness is first necessary for man, then conflict.
The blind mouse (bat) goes hidden from the sun;
For force is foolish against an iron grasp.
The person whom thou knowest to be thy enemy,
To take for a friend is not the part of wisdom."
No one says to thee: "Thou dost do good
When thou places thy life in the desire of his love.
The beggar who, of a king, asked (in marriage) for his daughter,
Suffered pushing on the back of his head, and nurtured a vain passion.
How may she bring into reckoning a lover like thee,
For the faces of kings and sultans are toward her?
Think not that, in such an assembly, she
Will exercise courtesy to a poor one like thee.
Or if she practice gentleness toward the whole creation--
Thou art a helpless one--she will exercise severity to
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