Oct 01 2008
The Beauty of Oneness
by Khwaja Abdullah Ansari
English version by A.G. Farhadi
Any eye filled with the vision of this world
cannot see the attributes of the Hereafter,
Any eye filled with the attributes of the Hereafter
would be deprived of the Beauty of Oneness.
— from Munajat: The Intimate Invocations, by Sheikh Ansari / Translated by A. G. Farhadi
/ Photo by Mayr /
I’ve always been sensitive to key events in society. Something about that collective mental and emotional focus has always hit a sensitive nerve in me. I tend to feel major upheavals in my own personal energies.
For example, in 2001 I was living in Hawaii. When the attacks of September 11th hit in New York and Washington DC, it was morning for most of the US, but it was the middle of the night for me in Hawaii. I woke up at about 3:00AM, unable to sleep after having had nightmares about conflicts in the Middle East. I got up, paced around the house and, when I realized I couldn’t fall back asleep, I turned on the television. I flipped to a news station — just in time to see the second plane hit the World Trade Center.
My system feels, at times, like a Richter scale for the planet. That sensitivity can be debilitating at times, but also a source of insight and a reminder of how interconnected we all are.
Naturally, I’ve had lots of reason to feel further global agitations since then, given the American invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, and the many horrors that have resulted. I can, of course, list several other major political and environmental disasters, and bubbling tensions. That internal needle of mine has gotten jumpy in recent years.
So I thought I should at least take a moment to say something about the current financial concerns in the world. I’ve certainly felt it. The financial crisis is not just a blip that will be forgotten in a couple of months. The problems are deep rooted and the current instability has been brewing for some time. That’s not the most reassuring thing to say, but that’s what I see.
I know how frightened, even traumatized many people are feeling right now. But it is so important to keep things in perspective. No matter how events play out, remember that the fundamentals of life are dependable and rock solid. The basic purpose of your life won’t change. Whether you have a lot of money or are struggling to pay bills, our real job day-to-day is still to be kind and compassionate and to deepen our awareness. When you see need, help if you can. That guideline doesn’t change.
In other words, the things that are truly important in life, our reasons for being here at all, they aren’t affected in the slightest. We can even say we are being given even greater opportunity to challenge ourselves and express our purpose in life.
One more opportunity to expand our vision beyond the merely tangible, and also beyond the lovely escape of a Hereafter, and finally recognize the Beauty of Oneness everywhere — and then to build society based upon that vision.
|Khwaja Abdullah Ansari|
Sheikh Khwaja Abdullah Ansari, Sheikh Ansari Jabir ibn ‘Abdullah al-Ansari, also known as Ansari of Herat, was born in Herat, in western Afghanistan.
Some of Sheikh Ansari’s works include Kashf al-Asrar “Unveiling of the Secrets” (Commentary of the Qur’an), Tabaquat al-Sufiyya (The Generations of the Sufis), “Munajat” (Intimate Invocations) which is incorporated into the Kashf al-Asrar and in the Tabaqat.
Khwaja Abdullah Ansari died in Herat the year 1088, and his burial place in Herat is still a place of pilgrimage for thousands of Sufis and the faithful every year.