own lordship, like Pharaoh. However much torment it suffers, it retains that vein. Hunger, however, destroys it. Hence, fasting in Ramadan strikes direct blows at the soul’s pharaoh-like front, shattering it. It demonstrates its impotence, weakness, and want. It makes it realize that it is a slave.
Among the narrations of Hadith is the following: “God Almighty said to the instinctual soul: ‘What am I and what are you?’ The soul replied: ‘I am myself and You are Yourself.’ So He punished it and cast it into Hell, then asked it again. Again it replied: ‘I am myself and You are Yourself.’ However He punished it, it did not give up its egoism. Finally He punished it with hunger; that is, He made it go hungry. Then again He asked it: ‘Who am I and who are you?’ And the soul replied: ‘You are my Compassionate Sustainer and I am your impotent slave!’”
O God! Grant blessings and peace to our master Muhammad that will be pleasing to You and fulfilment of his truth to the number of the merits of the words of the Qur’an in the month of Ramadan, and to his Family and Companions, and grant them peace.
Limitless in His glory is your Sustainer, the Lord of Almightiness, [exalted] above anything that men may devise by way of definition! * And peace be upon all His message-bearers. * And all praise is due to God alone, the Sustainer of All the Worlds!(37:180-2)1
APOLOGY: This Second Section was written at speed when both myself and the rough-copy scribe were ill; it is bound therefore to contain disorder and defects. We await from our brothers that they look on it with tolerance. They may correct it as they think fit.