O my friend who is accompanying me on my imaginary journey! That land is nature and the philosophy of Naturalism. And the tunnel is the way that the philosophers have opened up with their thought in order to reach the truth. The footprints I saw were those of famous philosophers like Plato and Aristotle,1 and the voices I heard those of geniuses like Ibn Sina and Farabi. Indeed, I saw in various books some of the things Ibn Sina had said and some of his principles, but he had become stuck, he could go no further, he was submerged before reaching the truth. Anyhow, in order to save you from anxiety, I showed you a small part of truth. Now I return to my journey.
Gradually I realized that I had been given two things to use. One was a torch; it would scatter the darkness of that subterranean nature. The other was a device which, by smashing mighty boulders and huge rocks, would open up a way for me. I was told: “This torch and device have been given to you from the treasury of the Qur’an.” So I carried on for a long time in this way. Then suddenly I realized that I had come out on the other side. I saw a world where everywhere there was rejoicing, bright sunshine in a most beautiful springtime and an invigorating breeze and delicious life-giving water. I said: “All praise be to God!”
Then I realized that I did not own myself, someone was testing me. As in the first part of the journey, I found myself in that vast desert under the suffocating cloud. And, though now on another way, still someone was driving me on. This time it was not under the earth; I was making this long journey on the face of the earth in order to reach the other side. I saw things in this part of my journey so strange and curious they cannot be described: the sea was raging, storms threatened me, everything caused difficulties for me. But once again, with the means of travel that had been given to me from the Qur’an, I overcame them and passed on. On the way I saw that there were corpses of travellers everywhere. Those who had completed the journey were one in a thousand. At any rate, having been saved from the cloud I had reached the other side of the earth and had come out in full view of the dazzling sun. Breathing in the invigorating breeze, I declared: “All praise be to God!”
I started looking round that heaven-like world. Then I saw that there was someone who would not let me stay there. In an instant he took me to that
If you say: “Who do think you are to challenge these famous philosophers? You are like a mere fly and yet you meddle in the flight of eagles,” I would reply: “While having a pre-eternal teacher like the Qur’an, in matters concerning truth and the knowledge of God, I do not have to attach as much value as that of a fly’s wing to those eagles, who are the students of misguided philosophy and deluded intellect. However inferior I am to them, their teacher is a thousand times more inferior than mine. With the help of my teacher, whatever caused them to become submerged did not so much as dampen my toes. An insignificant private who acts in accordance with the laws and commands of a great king is able to achieve more than a great field marshal of an insignificant king...”