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Tag: The Book of the Book

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April 9, 2009 Posted by tahir in Travel

The Book of the Book IX

Yasavi of  the Masters Transmits it

Ahmed Yasavi had a history of the content of the Book of the Book bound in a volume of over two hundred pages, on whose cover was written: “If the thickness of books determines the value of their content, this one should issue really be even thicker.”
Since Ahmed Yasavi, of the masters of Central Asia, this story has been transmitted for more than seven hundred years.
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April 8, 2009 Posted by tahir in Travel

The Book of the Book VIII

Yasavi Buys it for Twelve Gold Pieces


When Ahmed Yasavi was a student, he bought a copy of the Book from Mali, paying two gold pieces.
 The following day he returned, and gave only another ten pieces of gold, saying: “What I have learned from the Book is worth more than this. But since I have no more money I will give it all to you, in token of my valuing this lesson is equal to my entire possessions.”…



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April 7, 2009 Posted by tahir in Books

The Book of the Book VII

Mali Saves the Book


The Barbarian had the book had destroyed, but his interpreter, whose name was Mali, remembered its contents. It is through his work with its teaching was passed down.
Mali opened a shop.
He kept copies of the Book of the Book on view, for sale. Nobody was allowed to look inside until he had paid two gold pieces for a copy. Some learned the lesson of the book, and came back to study with Mali.  others wanted their money returned, but Mali always said:
“I cannot give back your money until you return me what you have learned from the transaction, as well as the book itself.”
Some who preferred mere appearance to inner content, called Mali a deceiver.
But Mali told them: “You were, all along, seeking deceivers so you will assume that you have found one in anyone.”…



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April 6, 2009 Posted by tahir in Books

The Book of the Book VI

The Guarding and Theft of the Book


The king was so impressed by the stranger’s story that he ordered the story to be inscribed and bound in a large book. This was placed in a niche in his Treasury and guarded by armed men, day and night. The aged king died and a barbarian conqueror devastated his realm.
Breaking into the Treasury, this man saw the book in its place of honour and said to himself: “This must be the source of the country’s happiness, wisdom and prosperity.” He said aloud: “Let the book be taken down and read out to me in our own language.”
But this conqueror, for all his physical power, was an ignoramus; he could make no sense of the words in the book…


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April 5, 2009 Posted by tahir in Books

The Book of the Book V

 The Interpretation of the Dervish


The dispirited students, going to rest in a caravanserai, came upon a dervish, and told him of their perplexity.
He said: “What did you learn from the scholars?”
The travellers said: “Nothing. They could tell us nothing.”
The dervish said:  “On the contrary, they told you everything. They showed that the book was not to be understood in the manner I assumed by you, or by them. You may think that they lacked depth. But you,  in your turn, lack sense. The book was teaching something through the incident itself, while you remained asleep.”
But the students found this explanation too subtle to their minds, and the only person who maintained the knowledge of the block was a casual visitor to the caravanserai, who overheard the interchange which I have just repeat to you, O King and Dervish!”
The stranger dressed in green then stood up and walked away…


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April 4, 2009 Posted by tahir in Books

The Book of the Book IV

The Opinion of the Scholars


The successors to the sage took the book to the most famous scholars of their time, saying:
 “We have this book, and seek your interpretation. It belongs to such and such a sage, the wonder of  the age, now dead.
This is all he left behind, and we are unable to fathom its mystery.”
At first the scholars were delighted to see a work of such size, bearing the name of its former owner, whom they knew to have been revered by multitudes of people.
They said:
“We will of course give you the real interpretation.”
But when they found that the book was all but empty, and what words there were made no sense to them, they first sneered and then shouted at the students, driving them away in fury.
They believed that they had been victims of a hoax. That was a time when scholars were limited and literal-minded.
 They could not imagine a book which could do something, only a book which said something…


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April 3, 2009 Posted by tahir in Books

The Book of the Book III

Contrary to Expectation


A wise man, the wonder of his age, taught his disciples from a seemingly inexhaustible store of wisdom.
He attributed all his knowledge to a thick tome which was kept in a place of honour in his room.
This sage would allow nobody to open the volume.
When he died, those who had surrounded him, regarding themselves as his heirs, ran to open the book, anxious to possess what it contained.
They were surprised, confused and disappointed when they found that there was writing on only one page.
They became even more bewildered and then annoyed when they tried to penetrate the meaning of the phrase which met their eyes.
It was: “when you realise the difference between the container and the content, you will have knowledge.”…



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April 2, 2009 Posted by tahir in Books

The Book of the Book II

The Stranger Who Dressed in Green


One day the aging king, out on a hunting expedition, sat down to rest when a stranger, dressed in green, approached.
  Saluting the king he told a story; this story, The Tale of the book.
The next section begins with the tale of the book.



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April 1, 2009 Posted by tahir in Books

The Book of The Book I

The Dervish who Became a King


There was once a dervish who had seen truth.
He decided he would have to become powerful in the ordinary world before people would listen to him, so he applied all his concentration to the task of attaining visible authority.
In the course of time he became king.
When he had spent some time as a ruler, the dervish realised that people did not want his way of teaching.
They appeared to hear him, but acted only from hope of reward or fear of punishment.
This dervish King lacked an instrument with which to teach. None came to him until he was almost at the end of his days…



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March 31, 2009 Posted by tahir in Books

Content and Container

As the parent of two small children, I often find myself explaining to them the difference between content and container. We are all at times lured by the sizzle, so greatly that we forget it’s almost of no value at all.  And children  fall for it all more, perhaps because of the way society targets them, and because of their natural ingenuousness. This morning, Ariane was going on and on about her best friend’s school bag. She described it in intricate detail. She said it had pictures of Barbie all over the back, and pink fluffy felt on the sides, and a handle made from real pink leather. At first I tried to tell her that the bag was nothing more than that, a bag… but she didn’t want to hear. So I  said I would tell her story to explain what I meant. This is the story, The Book of the Book…



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