it was not a true creation through its will, but a manifestation, an emanation.
As for the other man, he said that those harmonious, orderly decorations so full of art definitely required will, choice, intention, and purpose. It was impossible for there to be a manifestation without will, an emanation without choice.
Yes, the peacock had a beautiful and elevated nature, but it could not be the doer; it was passive. It could not become one with the active agent. Its spirit was fine and exalted, but it could not be the creator and disposer, only receptive and a means. For observedly in each of its feathers was an art performed with infinite wisdom and an inscription and decoration made through an infinite power. And these could not occur without will and choice. The arts indicating perfect wisdom within perfect power, and perfect dominicality and mercy within perfect wisdom were not the work of some sort of manifestation. The scribe who had written that gilded notebook could not be inside it and be united with it. The notebook rather only had contact with the nib of the scribe’s pen. In which case, the wondrous decorations of the similitude of the peacock known as the universe were a gilded missive of the peacock’s Creator.
Now, look at the peacock and read the missive. Say to its Scribe: “What wonders God has willed! Blessed be God! Glory be to God!” The person who supposes the missive to be the scribe, or the scribe to be inside the letter, or fancies the missive to be imagination, has surely hidden his reason in the veils of love and is unable to see the true form of reality.
Among the varieties of passionate love, the one most conducive to the way of the Unity of Existence, is love of this world. When it turns into true love, love of this world, which is temporary (mecazî), is transformed into the Unity of Existence. A person loves his personal beloved with worldly (mecazî) love. Then, unable to accept in his heart his beloved’s transience and ephemerality, he consoles himself by saying that his beloved is a mirror reflecting the beauty of the True Object of Love and Worship, and attaches himself to a reality, so acquiring permanence for him through true love.
In the same way, when, due to the constant blows of death and separation, the strange love of the person who takes the huge world and the universe in its totality as his beloved is transformed into true love, he seeks refuge in the way of the Unity of Existence, in order to save that great beloved of his from death and separation. If he has extremely powerful and elevated faith, it becomes a pleasurable, luminous, acceptable level, as with those resembling Muhyi’l-Din al-‘Arabi. However, there is the possibility