Monday, August 10, 2009

Abu Said on Miraculous Powers and the Mill

Abu Said Abul Khayr, one of the prominent sufi masters during the 10th and 11th centuries once remarked when he was told that a certain person could walk on water saying 'That is simple, a frog and a mosquito can also walk on water.' Then he was told that another man could fly. He replied ,'That too is simple, a fly and a raven can also fly.' Finally he was told about someone who could go from one city to another in the wink of an eye. He replied, 'Satan can go from east to west in one breath. These abilities have no value whatsoever. A true human being is one who can mix and socialize with people but does not forget to remember God even for a moment.'

Abu Said was traveling with his companions when they came across a mill. He stopped his horse and listened to the sound of the mill. Then he asked."Do any of you know what the mill is saying?" They all shook their heads. He said, "It is saying, 'Sufism is what I have. I receive the coarse and give it back fine. I travel around myself and in myself so that I dispel what I do not need."

FROM: Tales from the Land of the Sufis by Mojdeh Bayat and Mohamad Ali Jamnia
Publisher credit: Shambhala 2001

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