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Figurative love is sometimes observed to change into love for the creator, that is, into the real love. Is it also possible that the love of the world can change into love of God?

The world has two faces; one is mortal and transient, the other is a mirror where the Divine Names are manifested, and a field sown with the seeds for the next life. If its lover is able to turn away from its transient face to the other, then his love of the world can change into the love of God. There is one more condition for this that he should not take his own particular, small and perishable world for the whole vast, outer world. If like the misguided people, he forgets himself, he is immersed in the external world and falls in love with it, he will drown in the bog of nature worship�unless a hand miraculously comes to his aid.

In order to understand this truth, consider the following analogy:

Suppose there are four of us in a room with four walls on each of which there is a full length mirror. At least five rooms will then appear, one real and common to all four people, and �private� rooms reflected in each of our mirrors. Each of us can change the shape, appearance and colour of his private room by manipulating his own mirror. We can turn it into green or red, for example, by painting the mirror, and we can give it different shapes. As for the shared real room, we cannot change it so easily. Although both rooms, private and common, are almost identical in appearance, their disposition and manageability is quite different. You can destroy your reflected, private room with a finger, whereas you cannot even move a stone of the shared real one.

Likewise, the world is a decorated station. The life of each person is a full length mirror. In this station, each of us has a private world, the pillar, the center or gate of which is his life. Our private world can also be compared to a page, on which our deeds are being written down with the pen of our life. We love our private world but we inevitably come to the realization that this world is built around our life. Therefore, it is, like our life, transient, unstable and perishable. What we should then do is to give our heart to the manifestations of the Divine Names, not to the perishable things. Besides, we should know that our private world has been assigned to us as a field so that we may sow in it seeds to grow into our Paradise, and accordingly, we should love it for the sake of the fruits which we will be able to harvest in the other world. If we can do this, that is to say, if we are able to devote our love to the fruits of our deeds and the Divine manifestations, then love for the world will change into love for God. Otherwise, as stated in the verse, Be not as those who forgot God, and so He caused them to forget themselves; those they are the ungodly2, it is possible for people to become drowned in their private world, because, by forgetting themselves and the temporary nature of that private world, they abandon themselves to living this worldly life as if they and it would last forever.

Such a love for the transient face of the world is the source of endless pains and torments, since it gives rise to a pathetic compassion and despairing tender-heartedness. A sensitive lover feels pity for all beings and, accordingly, his feelings are always wounded by the perishing of all beautiful, mortal creatures. As he cannot do anything for them, he suffers much in hopelessness. On the other hand, the one who has found God will discover a remedy for the ailments that are caused by his feelings of compassion and tender-heartedness. Since he has perceived that the souls of the living things, for whose perishing he feels such pity, are mirrors where the permanent Names of a Permanent Being are constantly reflected, his tender-heartedness changes into an accepting joy and ease of mind. He sees that, behind all the beautiful but mortal, perishable creatures, a pure grace and a sacred beauty are permanently manifested through their delicate workmanship, ornamentation, all the wonder with which they are favored and illumined. He thereby understands how death and perishing are in reality a process of renewal to refresh and augment the beauty and pleasures, and to display the Divine artistry observed in the universe. As a result, his pleasure in and appreciation of all kinds of Divine manifestations increases, as does ardor.

 

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