The Garden Party (Part IV): The (shocking) truth of the third answer exposed!

Family resemblance: the answer to the third question. p = Prophecy (East), f = Speech, the feminine, the bride, j = Judgement (Fire) and l = Love (Water), s = submission, witnessing, question, matyrdom, m = mastery, answer, victory, O = the (m)Other, F = the Father.


By now, the Professor had appeared, in the eyes of the Muslims, simply and utterly strange. Nevertheless, he continued on:

As for the child, if the man’s discharge precedes the woman’s discharge, the child attracts the similarity to the man, and if the woman’s discharge precedes the man’s, then the child attracts the similarity to the woman.

Narrated Abu Salama: Um Salaim said, “O Allah’s Apostle! Allah does not refrain from saying the truth! Is it obligatory for a woman to take a bath after she gets nocturnal discharge?” He said, “Yes, if she notices the water.” Um Salama smiled and said, “Does a woman get discharge?” Allah’s Apostle said. “Then why does a child resemble (its mother)?” (Sahih Bukhari, The Book of Prophets, 55:545)

Our Real is the sublimated Logos. It is a continuous plane that sustains our journey of differentiation. God’s breath becomes sublimated to form the Real, at which point the journey of differentiation begins. It becomes a dialectic stemming from the tawhid of God’s unity of Love. From love, breathing. From breathing, withdrawal and presence. And from withdrawal and presence, the field of differentiation, the field of the Symbolic, the field of our journey back to Love.

And this is what this question of family resemblance deals with: the relationship between the Real and the Symbolic.

The mother and father possess a threefold resemblance, contained within their singular tawhid: 1) there is a Real mother and father, 2) there are two symbolic functions, and 3) there are two signs of something Real.

This Real mother and father are felt by us, regulate and intrude upon our symbolic journey  necessarily in order for us to 1) be happy and free of pathologies and 2) to ascend into illuminated life and afterlife 3) realise these two things by recognizing how we are formed, the nature of our sexual components.

Let’s dim the lights and slow it down.

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The Garden Party (Part III): The second answer of water explained


The answer to question 2. P = Prophecy (East), S = Speech, J = Judgement (Fire) and L = Love (Water)

When the news of the arrival of the Prophet at Medina reached ‘Abdullah ibn Salam, he went to him to ask him about certain things.He said, “I am going to ask you about three things which only a Prophet can answer: What is the first sign of The Hour? What is the first food which the people of Paradise will eat? Why does a child attract the similarity to his father or to his mother?”

The Prophet replied, “Jibreel has just now informed me of that.”

Ibn Salam said, “He (Jibreel) is the enemy of the Jews amongst the angels.”

The Prophet said, “As for the first sign of the Hour, it will be a fire that will collect the people from the East to the West.”

The Professor began to explain the meaning of the answer to the first question. He spent a long time explaining the difference between the Real and the Symbolic and the nature of Symbolic Functions. Essentially he said that the Real is what actually is, while the Symbolic is our differentiated, linguistic relationship to the Real, made possible through a life consisting of assembling the signs in particular ways (speaking, thinking, acting, proving, judging). And essentially by symbolic function, he meant something very much like a Jungian archetype.

Then he discussed the second answer of Prophecy.

The group of Muslims were very patient listening to him, but it would have been easy to see that (apart from the more mystically inclined sister amongst them) the majority were beginning to get rather uncomfortable with his eccentric understanding.

Nevertheless, he battled on with his tafsir. He spoke as follows:

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Four rivers

Four rivers, four levels of being.

Regarding the four rivers, here is a secret I disclose for you (although, as usual, whatever I say can and may be used in evidence against “me”).

Recall Qur’an:

“… in it are rivers of water incorruptible, rivers of milk of which the taste never change, rivers of wine, a joy to those who drink, and rivers of honey pure and clear.” (Qur’an 47:15)

These are the four rivers that run from the Lote Tree (also outlined in the hadeeth relating to Mi’raj and within the first few pages of Genesis): as Qur’an and various Divine sources observe, two of these rivers (of water and milk) are visible, while the “upper” two rivers (wine and honey) are invisible.

Within Tailorite Sufism, these rivers correspond to four planes of existence:

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Fire and water: the union of Abraham is implied by the burning of Ali and the annihilation of ibn Abbas.
Fire and water: the union of Abraham is implied by the burning of Ali and the annihilation of ibn Abbas.

A brother on the path was asking about the shariah’s treatment of apostates.

He said: “For me, this is one of the most difficult and unpalatably dark bits of our texts. The law, though thankfully not invoked in this country, is certainly mentioned often enough at the masjid. For example, once I went to the Friday prayers at the mosque of an acquaintance of mine,  the son of a major sheikh in the city. That afternoon the sheikh gave a passionate hutba denouncing the great sin of apostasy, shouting the following hadith in the de rigueur fire and brimstone fashion:

Narrated Ikrima: Ali burnt some people and this news reached ibn ‘Abbas, who said, “Had I been in his place I would not have burnt them, as the Prophet said, ‘Don’t punish (anybody) with Allah’s Punishment.’ No doubt, I would have killed them, for the Prophet said, ‘If somebody (a Muslim) discards his religion, kill him.’ (Bukhari Volume 4, Book 52, Number 260)

“My acquaintance (who is very much part of the progressive Islamic movement) apologised profusely to me afterwards, excusing his father. ‘Er … you know how our parents are.’ I know he was also nervous about the ever present threat of investigative journalists and and so one being in cognito at hutba: he might even have suspected me of being such.”

The Tailor replied thus:

Now there are two options for understanding this hadith: to discount the authenticity of the narration (certainly something I understand can be done, as not all narrations have the same strength of authenticy) or else to take it as authentic (and I am sure your friend’s father is not in the minority of the ummah here).

Now, let’s say it is authentic. Then it seemingly contradicts the verse 2:256 of our Qur’an (we all know it well — “There is no compulsion in religion …”).

But the contradiction is the clue to its meaning:
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Four wives

Four wives
Four wives

And if your love is only sufficient to maintain one wife alone, then may
your knowledge be from a river of purest water,
The river of life, from which every living thing is formed,
Whose tributaries form proof trees,
Whose waves our ships negotiate,
Whose games we play,
Whose flow marks our Time.

Here is life.

Fish of different species argue about their colours,
but their colours only add to water’s proof.
And a Wife of Water is sufficient for you to find your Lord.

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