of the Prophet (UWBP), cannot sustain that way and are inapplicable to it. For this reason, the four Rightly-Guided Caliphs, and the leading authorities and interpreters of the law, and the authorities of the first generations of Islam were not seen to practise it. This means that it is not the most elevated way. It may be elevated, but it is also deficient. It is very important, but it is also very perilous and difficult. Yet, it is still very pleasurable. Those who embark on it for the pleasure, do not want to leave it, and because of their self-centredness, they suppose it to be the highest degree. We have explained the basis and nature of this way to an extent in the treatise called Nokta Risalesi, and in some of the Words and Letters, and shall suffice with them. Here, we shall describe one of the serious hazards on that important way. It is as follows:
For the highest of the elite, who pass beyond the sphere of causes and renouncing everything other than God, sever their attachment to contingent beings and enter a state of complete absorption in God, this way is a righteous way. But, to present it in terms of intellectual knowledge to those who are submerged in causes, are enamoured of the world, and are plunged into materialist philosophy and nature, will drown them in nature and materiality and distance them from the reality of Islam. For those who love the world and are attached to the sphere of causes want to ascribe a sort of permanence to this transitory world. They do not want to lose their beloved. On the pretext of the Unity of Existence, they imagine it to have permanent existence. On account of the world, their beloved, and by ascribing permanence and eternity to it, they make it an object of worship; and, I seek refuge with God, this paves the way to the abyss of denying God.
This century, materialism is so widespread, materiality is thought to be the source of everything. If in such an age, the elite believers consider materiality to be so unimportant as to be non-existent, thus furthering the way of the Unity of Existence, the materialists will lay claim to it, saying: “We say the same thing.” Whereas, among all the ways in the world, the one furthest from that of the materialists and nature-worshippers, is the way of the Unity of Existence. For the followers of the Unity of Existence attach such importance, due to their belief, to the divine existence that they deny the universe and beings. Whereas the materialists attach so much importance to beings that on account of the universe they deny God. How can the two come together or be compared?