SHEIR’ (MILK) IS SOMETHING CONSUMED BY MEN & ‘SHER’ (LION) IS AN ANIMAL WHICH CONSUMES MEN

 Moulana Rumi رحمه الله writings and advice:
“O Loved One, do not compare the cases of Saintly people with yourself. For although ‘sheir’ (milk) and ‘sher’ (lion) are spelt the same (in Urdu), they are both different things ‘Sheir’ (milk) is something consumed by men And ‘sher’ (lion) is an animal which consumes men.
The whole world has strayed because of these wrong comparisons And seldom are people aware of the Saint’s and Abdaal’s positions. People of ill-fortune are deprived of eyes, which are able to perceive the truth.
Good and evil appears the same in their eyes. Through their wrong analogies, they have claimed equality with the Prophets And at times have considered the Saints as their equals.
And if someone objected, they would say: We are men and so are they. We both are forced to eat and sleep. So what difference is there between them and us?”

Now Moulana Rumi رحمه الله explains that if the outer form of two things are the same, then it does not necessarily mean that they are the same in all aspects. He then explains the difference through a few examples.

1. Both the wasp and the bee suck nectar from the flowers. Both of them feed on the same thing. However the wasp merely produces a poisonous sting while the bee produces sweet honey.

2. You will find two kinds of deer feeding on the same type of grass. In the one type of deer the grass creates dung while in the other type of deer it produces fragrant musk.

3. Two kinds of bamboo are being fed with water from the same watering place. The one ends up being hollow, while in the other, that water produces sugar, as in sugar cane.

4. An evil doing person eats bread and that bread creates within him stinginess, jealousy and evil desires. That same bread is also eaten by a Saint, but Divine Love and Knowledge is created within him.

5. Outwardly brackish water and sweet water appear to be the same but how much different are they? Similarly, one of ill-fortune and one of good-fortune appear the same. When we see the outward form of a righteous one and an evil one they are the same, but are they the same in their life style and manners.

6. Whatever a man does, an ape can also do but how different is a man from an ape?

7. In a similar manner, ignorant ones have looked at miracles and compared them with sorcery. A miracle is in fact from the Mercy of Allah which is granted to the Saintly ones, whereas sorcery is Allah’s curse which comes through the evil-minded and rejected ones.

8. Outwardly, the deeds of a believer and a hypocrite appear to be the same, but in actual fact there is a vast difference between the two. How great is the difference in the results of both? The former leads to paradise and the latter leads’ to Hell fire. ‘

9. Pure and impure gold both have the same appearance, but when both of them are put to the test, see how different the value of one is from the other.

LESSON: The lesson here is that one should not compare oneself with the Saints of Allah. Look at their inner conditions of nearness to Allah and contact with Him, which is the envy of all the Kings of this world. Derive benefit from them and do not consider them to be like yourself.

The value of a container depends upon its contents. So is the body of man. If it is honoured with great contact with Allah, then that body is considered very precious.

Let us take two bottles. Each bottle is worth a mere rupee. In the one bottle we fill perfume which is worth five thousand rupees and the other one we fill with water. This. second bottle will be worth just that one rupee while the other one will be worth five thousand rupees.

If urine is filled in it, it will then not even be worth the one rupee. So how can it be correct to compare the one bottle to the other?

May Allah grant us the ability to honour and respect the greatness of His righteous Saintly servants and save us from drawing foolish analogies and comparisons, so that we may benefit from their teachings and also acquire the eagerness to learn from them.

May our wrong perceptions not be an obstacle towards acquiring benefit from them,

Ameen

 

Source : Ma-aarif-E-Mathnavi