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Where dwelleth God?

Of a Sufi teacher, a question was asked: “Where dwelleth God?” And the Sufi teacher said: “I went to temples but found Him not! I went to mosques but found Him not! I travelled to different towns and villages in Arabia but found Him not! I visited Egypt and other countries: I found not the Lord! But I found Him—my Beloved—after much weary wandering.”

And a disciple asked: “Master! Where did you find the Lord, at last?” And the teacher said: One day, I entered a house. It was evening, dim lights were burning. On a cot lay a woman, by her side was her husband. This woman was in great suffering, for one of her bones has been broken. Beside the husband of the woman, there was also a daughter. During the day, when the husband moved out to attend to business, the daughter looked after the mother, who lay in pain, stretched on the cot. And in the evening, the husband came, and he kept awake, nursing her, looking after her needs. He served her through the night, and as he kept awake, he prayed the following prayer: “O Lord of life! She hath served me for twenty years and more. Heal her and bless her!”

And the Sufi teacher said: I knelt down immediately and kissed the feet of the husband of this woman. And I said to him: “Blessed are you and blessed is your daughter, for here in your home have I found my God!”

True it is, that he who does his work in the right spirit, he—not the temple-keeper—bears witness to God!

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