How shall we interpret this doctrine of Oneness? Is it theism or pantheism? This reminds one of the question which John Sterling once put to Carlyle, and the reply he received. Emancipated by a sudden flash of inspiration, the once doubting, despairing, disbelieving dreamer of Chelsea passed at once from the Everlasting No to the Everlasting Yea. Thence­forth, embracing the mystical beliefs of the German transcendentalists, he was never weary of proclaiming that the Highest dwelt visibly in that mystic un­fathomable visibility which called itself “I” on this earth.

John Sterling could see nothing but flat pantheism in this creed and its countless corollaries. “It is mere pantheism, that,” said he on one occasion. “And suppose it were pot-theism, if the thing is true?” asked Carlyle. Had that sovereign saint Bayazid been asked the same question, his frantic lips would, no doubt, have, vouchsafed a reply equally candid, if not more irreverent.

The great thing is to know the thought. The expression matters little. Let us, therefore, try to comprehend this one fundamental principle of Sufism. Has the supreme Unnameable any personality? Is there anywhere an infinite Ego transcending space, transcending time? Or is it only man, the acme of creation, that has an ego of his own in which the Infinite Ego, the creature of his own imagination, is reflected? Can an answer to this riddle be found?