Nature, the earth, that which we see, feel, and hear, are but the subjective visions of God, suggested to our minds by the great Artist. Mind or Spirit alone is immanent. The fleeting phantoms thrown by the phantasmagoria of matter we must beware of. We must attach ourselves to none of their manifestations. God alone is the one real existence, the only great Reality. He exists in us and we in Him. The visions He grants us, the pictures He casts upon the screen of our imagination, we may use as a means of approach to the Eternal Beauty, to the consideration of the Divine. They are what Wordsworth calls ‘Intimations of Immortality’. As a great Frenchman once said, we weep when we listen to beautiful music, our eyes fill with tears on looking at a great picture or noble statue. A wonderful prospect in nature affects us in like manner. Wherefore? We weep because we feel that these things are but shadows of the real, the imperishable beauty which we have lost, and which we will not regain until we are once more made one with God. That Frenchman would have found in Sufism the complement, the ideal, of his philosophy.
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