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July 28, 2010

dreams within dreams

Someone said to me: You have wakened not out of sleep, but into a prior dream, and that dream lies within another, and so on, to infinity, which is the number of the grains of sand. The path that you are to take is endless, and you will die before you have truly awakened.

J.L. Borges - The Writing of the God

Posted by amin at 6:38 AM

July 25, 2010

les roses (xii)

Contre qui, rose,
avez-vous adopté
ces épines?
Votre joie trop fine
vous a-t-elle forcée
de devenir cette chose

Mais de qui vous protège
cette arme exagérée?
Combien d'ennemis vous ai-je
qui ne la craignaient point.
Au contraire, d'été en automne,
vous blessez les soins
qu'on vous donne.


rose, against whom
did you assume
those thorns? did your too delicate
joy force you
to become that
armed thing?

but from whom does this
extravagant weapon protect
you? how many enemies
stole off with you
because they weren't afraid of it?
instead, from summer to autumn,
you wound the attention
that's poured over you.


Posted by amin at 7:13 AM

July 16, 2010

the authentic way

If you say: What is the way to knowing God? I would say: were a small boy or an impotent person to say to us: what is to the way to know the pleasure of sexual intercourse, and to perceive its essential reality? We would say: there are two ways here: one of the is for us to describe it to you, so that you can know it; the other is to wait patiently until you experience the natural instinct of passion in yourself, and then for you to engage in intercourse, so that you experience the pleasure of sexual intercourse for yourself, and to come to know it. This second way is the authentic way, leading to the reality of knowledge.

Ghazali - Ninety-Nine Names

Posted by amin at 9:26 AM

fables of the ancients!

We composed several books on the subject of traversing and traveling the mystical path. These works dealt with subtle aspects of the sciences, too abstruse for the understanding of the common folk, who consequently found fault with them, and wallowed in what they did not comprehend about them. Ah well, what speech is more eloquent than the speech of the Lord of All the Worlds? Yet they dismissed it as: "Mere fables of the Ancients!"

Ghazali - The Path of the Worshipful Servants

Posted by amin at 9:19 AM

July 11, 2010

help! help!

Not the conception or intellectual perception of evil, but the grisly blood-freezing heart-palsying sensation of it close upon one, and no other conception or sensation able to live for a moment in its presence. How irrelevantly remote seem all our usual refined optimisms and intellectual and moral consolations in presence of a need of help like this! Here is the real core of the religious problem: Help! help! No prophet can claim to bring a final message unless he says things that will have a sound of reality in the ears of victims such as these. But the deliverance must come in as strong a form as the complaint, if it is to take effect; and that seems a reason why the coarser religions, revivalistic, orgiastic, with blood and miracles and supernatural operations, may possibly never be displaced. Some constitutions need them too much.

William James

Posted by amin at 6:43 AM

July 10, 2010

thoughts coupled with secret affects

Our discourse is an expression of our thoughts. Our thoughts are almost always coupled with secret affects...Therefore by means of speech we enable another to understand not only our thoughts but also the affects coupled thereto. From this derives the following consectarium, that it is impossible to interpret and see deeply into the words of a scriptoris, when one does not know what kind of affects are bound up in his mind with his having spoken them.

Johann Jacob Rambach

Posted by amin at 10:34 AM

a glass darkly

God has intentionally said much in a glass darkly, because it is not given to all to know the mysteries...Much is hidden from the faithful so that they will inquire the more zealously into Scripture and strive to achieve clear revelation.'


Posted by amin at 10:30 AM


Language is a sign or an image of things, like a pair of glasses through which we see the thing itself. Thus with effort we acquire through it knowledge of the subject matter itself.


Posted by amin at 10:24 AM

reading the holy scriptures

A man fearing God diligently seeks His will in the Holy Scriptures. And lets he should love controversy, he is made gentle in piety. He is prepared with a knowledge of languages lets he be impeded by unknown words and locutions. He is also prepared with an acquaintance with certain necessary things lest he be unaware of their force and nature when they are used for purposes of similitudes.


Posted by amin at 10:18 AM

July 4, 2010

those who defend and attack religion

The harm inflicted on religion by those who defend it in an improper manner is greater than the harm caused by those who attack it in a proper way.


Posted by amin at 9:29 AM

July 2, 2010

seven point creed

John Wooden's Seven Point Creed, given to him by his father Joshua upon his graduation from grammar school:

Be true to yourself.
Make each day your masterpiece.
Help others.
Drink deeply from good books, especially the Bible.
Make friendship a fine art.
Build a shelter against a rainy day.
Pray for guidance and give thanks for your blessings every day.

Posted by amin at 5:48 AM

July 1, 2010

ali's first sermon

Praise be to God, whose laudation those who speak cannot deliver, whose graces those who count cannot number, whose rightful due those who strive cannot render; He who cannot be grasped by far reaching aspirations, nor fathomed by profound intuitions; He whose attribute has no binding limitation, no existing description, no time appointed, no term extended.

Imam Ali

Posted by amin at 10:09 AM