From the Book of Love

In The Book of Love, ʿAmr ibn ʿUthmān al-Makkī wrote that God created the hearts seven thousand years before the bodies and kept them in the station of proximity. He created the spirits seven thousand years before the hearts and kept them in the garden of intimacy. He created the secret cores seven thousand years before the spirits and kept them in the degree of union. Every day He disclosed His beauty three hundred sixty times to the secret cores. He gazed upon the spirits three hundred sixty times, making them hear words of love, and He made manifest three hundred sixty subtleties to the hearts.

Then the three of them looked at the realm of being and saw no one more honored than themselves, so vanity and exultation appeared in them. Because of this, the Real tested them. He jailed the secret core in the spirit, He imprisoned the spirit in the heart, and He restrained the heart in this body. Then He compounded them with intellect, He sent the prophets, and He gave commandments. They all started seeking their own stations. The Real commanded them to pray.

When the body began to pray, the heart joined with love, the spirit reached proximity, and the secret core settled down in union.

~ ʿAlī ibn ʿUthmān Hujwīrī, Kashf al-maḥjub, 453
Divine Love: Islamic Literature and the Path to God
by William C. Chittick, Yale University Press
© 2013 by William C. Chittick

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