Praise of God.

O Lord, once we had no existence,
And were free from the fear of annihilation.
Thou first didst call us into existence from non-existence;
Thou hast bound our feet in the fetters of water and clay;
Thou hast set us free from the infirmity of powerlessness,
And hast led us onward from ignorance to knowledge;
Thou hast shed upon us the light of Thy Book;
Thou hast decreed what is to be done, and not done;
But we are ever mingling the evil with the good,
One while doing too much, one while too little.
We often have lost the way of Thy commandments,
Have often trodden the paths of disobedience;
Yet Thou hast not withdrawn the promise of Thy grace,
Thou hast not hidden from us the light of Thy guidance.
But from that light, if through Thy kindness it be not hidden,
What profit can we gain, if we work not on our own parts?
It is our own idleness which we have to lament;
Bestow on our work Thy gracious aid, that we work not in vain!
If the wise man drowns himself, like the fool,
What difference remains between ignorance and knowledge?
From the chords of sensuality comes no responsive symphony!
Narrow not to our feet the way of good deeds!
In this straitened pathway of groans in which we travel,
Open to us in Thy mercy an outlet of safety;
By that road call us to Thine Own Court,
And be our fellow-traveller to the portals of salvation!