MAN is a god in swaddling-bands. Time is a swaddling-band. Space is a swaddling-band. Flesh is a swaddling-band, and likewise all the senses and the things perceivable therewith. The mother knows too well that the swaddling-bands are not the babe. The babe, however, knows it not.
Man is too conscious yet of his swaddles which change from day to day and from age to age. Hence is his consciousness ever in flux: and hence his word which is his consciousness expressed is never clear and definite of meaning; and hence his understanding is in fog; and hence is his life out of balance. It is confusion thrice confounded.
And so man pleads for help. His agonizing cries reverberate throughout the aeons. The air is heavy with his moans. The sea is salty with his tears. The earth is furrowed with his tombs. The heavens are deafened with his prayers. And all because he knows not yet the meaning of his I which is to him the swaddling-bands as well as the babe therein enswaddled.
In saying I , Man cleaves the Word in twain; his swaddling-bands, the one; God’s deathless self, the other. Does Man in truth divide the Indivisible? God forbid. The indivisible no power can divide – not even God’s. Man’s immaturity imagines the division. And man, the infant, girds himself for battle and wages war upon the infinite All-self believing it to be the enemy of his being.
In this unequal fight, Man tears his flesh in shreds, and spills his blood in streams. While God, the Father-Mother, lovingly looks on. For he knows well that man is tearing but the heavy veils, and spilling but the bitter gall that blind him to his oneness with the One.
That is Man’s destiny – to fight and bleed and faint, and in the end to wake and bind the cleavage in the I with his own flesh and seal it with his blood.
– Michael Naimy, The Book of Mirdad