THAT MATURITY OF COMMUNAL LIFE DERIVES FROM FOLLOWING THE DIVINE LAW
Seek thou no
other meaning in the Law,
Nor look save light to find within the gem;
God was the jeweller who fashioned forth
This jewel, diamantine through and through.
Law is the only knowledge of the Truth,
Love the sole basis of the Prophetís code;
The Individual through Law attains
A faith maturer, and more fair adorned.
The rule of Law secures an ordered life
To all the nation, which established rule
Condition is of its continuance.
Power is patent in its knowledge, this
The sign of Mosesí staff and potent hand;81
So I declare the secret of Islam
Is Law, in which all things begin and end.
Since thou art called to be a guardian
Of the Faithís wisdom, I will tell to three
A subtle truth of the perspicuous Law.
If any Muslim be engaged upon
A meritorious act, and causelessly
Therein be challenged, forthwith it becomes
His sacred duty to discharge the same;
Power is deemed the very spring of Life.
Upon the day of battle, if the foe
Supposing truce is imminent neglects
His armyís marshalling, and casually
Confronts his fortune, breaking down the wall
And citadel of his defence; until
His order is restored, to march against
His unarmed country is prohibited.
Knowest thou then the mystery of this
Divine commandment? Life not living is
Except we live in danger. Law requires
That when to war though comest, thou shalt blaze
A fiery torch, and split the throat of rock.
Law tries the power of the strong right arm;
Confronting thee with Alondís massive height,
It bids thee pound into collyrium
That craggy mount, and with the ardent breath
Drawn from they throat its flint to liquefy.
The lean and feeble sheep is scarce a prey
Worthy the tigerís claw; or if the hawk
Consorts with sparrows, meaner-spirited
Than its poor victims it shall soon become.
The Lawgiver, to whom all fair and foul
Was fully known, this recipe of power
For thee prescribed. By toil the nerves are steeled,
And thou art raised to eminence in the world;
Or be thou wounded, this will make thee strong,
Yea, and mature as a firm mountain-chain.
Full lifeís religion is Muhammadís faith,
His code the commentary on lifeís law;
Be though earth-lowly, it shall lift thee up
High as the heavens, and will fashion thee
Harmonious to Godís summons. The rough rock
Is polished to a mirror by this faith,
And this unrests the steelís corroding heart.
Now when the Prophetís watchword passed from ken
His people held no more the secret key
To their continuance. That lusty sprout
Tall and firm-rooted (Muslim of the wastes
Mounted on camel, who in Bathaís vale62
Took his first steps) that by the desert warmth
Was nourished up, now fanned by Persiaís breeze
Is so diminished, that it hath become
Thin as a reed. He who was wont to slay
Tigers like sheep now winces at the ant
Trampled unwittingly; he who is joy,
Allahu Akbar crying, turned the rock
To running water, trembles at the note
Of amorous nightingales; he whose high will
Reckoned the mountain trifling as a straw
Commits himself entire to abject trust;
He whose firm blow once broke his foemenís neck,
His heart is wounded by his own breastís beat;
He whose bold tread a hundred tumults limned
Now cowers in retirement from the world;
He whose command none dared to disobey,
Before whose door great Alexander stood
A suppliant, and Darius begged his bread,
His ardour is attuned to mean content,
His boast the proffered bowl of mendicants.
Shaikh Ahmad, Saiyid lofty as the spheres,
From whose keen brain the sunís self borrowed light
(The roses that bedeck his holy grave
No other god but god breathe from his dust)
Thus spoke to a discipe: ďO though life
Of thy dear father, it behoves us all
That we beware of Persiaís fantasies;
Though Persiaís thoughts the heavens have surpassed
They equally transgress the boundaries
Set by the Prophetís Faith. Brother, give ear
To his sage counsel, and attentively
Receive the rede of a protagonist
Of our Community; take these wise words
To fortify thy heart; conform thyself
With Arab ways, to be a Muslim true.