earth glorify and extol, each with its particular tongue. He is a king so powerful He created the heavens and earth in six days, then abided on the Throne. One of Power and Majesty, Who, alternating night and day like two threads, one white and one black, writes His signs of the page of the universe; One to Whose command the sun, moon, and stars are subjugated. The apartments of the palace are the eighteen thousand worlds, each of which has been set in order and decorated in a fashion suitable to it. The strange arts you saw in the palace are the miracles of Divine power you see in this world, and the foods you saw there allude to the wonderful fruits of Divine mercy in this world, especially in summer, and above all in the gardens of Barla. The stove and kitchen there is the earth here, which has fire in its heart, and the face of the earth. While the jewels of the hidden treasuries you saw in the comparison are the similitudes of the manifestations of the sacred Divine Names. And the embroideries there, and the signs of the embroideries, are the well-ordered and finely worked beings and the harmonious impresses of the pen of power which adorn this world and point to the Names of the All-Powerful One of Glory.
As for the Master, he is our Master Muhammad (Peace and blessings be upon him). His assistants are the prophets (Peace be upon them), and his students, the saints and purified scholars. The ruler’s servants in the palace indicate the angels (Peace be upon them) in this world. And the guests invited to the banquet to spectate in the comparison are the jinn and mankind in this guest-house of the world, and the animals, who are the servants of mankind. As for the two groups, one of them here consists of the people of belief, who are the students of the All-Wise Qur’an, the interpreter of the verses and signs of the book of the universe. The other group consists of the people of unbelief and rebellion, who follow Satan and their evil-commanding souls; deaf and dumb, like animals, or even lower, they form the group of the misguided, who recognize the life of this world only.
FIRST GROUP: These are the felicitous and the good, who listened to the Master, ‘the Possessor of Two Wings.’ He is both the worshipping servant of God; in regard to worship he describes his Sustainer so that he is like the envoy of his community at the Court of Almighty God. He is also God’s Messenger; with regard to Messengership he conveys his Sustainer’s decrees to men and the jinn by means of the Qur’an.
This happy community heeded the Messenger and listened to the Qur’an. They saw themselves invested with the prescribed prayers, which are the index of all the varieties of worship, and numerous subtle duties within elevated stations. Indeed, they saw in detail the duties and stations which the prayers point to with their various formulas and actions. It was like this:
Firstly: Since they observed the Divine works, and in the form of a transaction in the absence of the person concerned, saw themselves in the station