Mystic, philosopher, poet, sage, Muhammad Ibn 'Arabi is one of the world's great spiritual teachers. Ibn 'Arabi was born in Murcia, Al-Andalus, in 1165 and his writings had an immense impact throughout the Islamic world and beyond. The universal ideas underlying his thought are of immediate relevance today.
It is He who is revealed in every face, sought in every sign, gazed upon by every eye, worshipped in every object of worship, and pursued in the unseen and the visible. Not a single one of His creatures can fail to find Him in its primordial and original nature.
If men knew themselves, they would know God; and if they really knew God, they would be satisfied with Him and would think of Him alone.
O dear one, listen! I am the reality of the world, the center of the circle. I am the parts and the whole. I am the will holding Heaven and Earth in place. I have given you sight only so you may see me.0 dear one! I call again and again but you do not hear me, I appear again and again but you do not see me, I fill myself with fragrance, again and again, but you do not smell me. I become savory food yet you do not taste me. Why can't you reach me through your touch Or breathe me in through your sweet perfumes?Love me, Love yourself in me. No one is deeper within you than I. Others may love you for their own sake, But I love you for yourself.Dear one! This bargain is not fair. If you take one step toward me, It is only because I have taken a hundred toward you. I am closer to you than yourself. Closer than your soul, than your own breath. Why do you not see me? Why do you not hear me? I am so jealous. I want you to see me-and no one else. To hear me-and no one else, not even yourselfDear one! Come with me. Let us go to Paradise together. And if we find any road that leads to separation, We will destroy that road. Let us go hand in hand In the presence of Love. Let it be our witness, Let it forever seal this wondrous union of ours.
When the mystery of the oneness of the soul and the Divine is revealed to you, you will understand that you are no other than God. ... Then you will see all your actions to be His actions and all your attributes to be His attributes and your essence to be His essence.... Thus, instead of [your own] essence, there is the essence of God and in place of [your own] attributes, there are the attributes of God. He who knows himself sees his whole existence to be the Divine existence, but does not experience that any change has taken place in his own nature or qualities. For when you know yourself, your sense of a limited identity vanishes, and you know that you and God are one and the same.
As for the theorists and thinkers, and the scholastic theologians, with their talk about the soul and its properties, none of them have grasped the Reality; such speculation can never grasp it. He who seeks to know the Reality through theoretical speculation is flogging a dead horse; ... for he who seeks to know It by any means other than the one proper to It, will never grasp It.
In one sense the Reality is creatures; in another sense, It is not. ... Whether you assert that It is undivided or divided, the Self is alone. The manifold [universe] exists and yet it does not exist.
When my Beloved appears, With what eye do I see Him? With His eye, not with mine, For none sees Him except Himself.
Know Him as both particularized and unparticularized, and be established in Truth. Be in a state of unity if you wish, or be in a state of separation if you wish; if the Totality reveals Itself to you, you will attain the crown of victory.
It is none other than He who progresses or journeys as you. There is nothing to be known but He; and since He is Being itself, He is therefore also the journeyer. There is no knower but He; so who are you? Know your true Reality. He is the essential self of all. But He conceals it by [the appearance of] otherness, which is "you." If you hold to multiplicity, you are with the world; and if you hold to the Unity, you are with the Truth .... Our names are but names for God; at the same time our individual selves are His shadow. He is at once our identity and not our identity ... Consider!