Taubâh literally means to turn back. But the nature of the turning must be different with differ­ent individuals according to the difference in their conditions and stages. Ordinary people would turn from sin with apology in order to escape punishment; middling ones would turn from their deeds to secure the regard of the Master; the Elect would turn from all worlds, here and hereafter, and feel the insignificance and non-existence thereof in order to realise the glory of the Maker. The turn­ing of a beginner cannot be permanent. A saint says of himself: “I turned back 70 times and failed each time; but my seventy-first turning proved steady, and I failed no more.”

Khwâjâ (Master) Zoonoon of Egypt observes that the Taubâh of ordinary people consists in turning from sins, that of the Elect in turning from heedlessness.

Khwâjâ Sobaid and many others are of opinion that Taubâh consists in remembering one’s past transgressions and being ever ashamed of them, so that one may not grow proud of one’s many virtues. On the other hand, Khwâja Junnaid and many others hold the view that Taubâh consists in forgetting past transgressions, i.e., in expunging their impressions from the heart, so that it may become as pure as if it had never committed them.

Taubâh is obligatory for all pilgrims at all times, since for each pilgrim there is always a stage higher than his present one. If he halts at any stage, he stops his pilgrimage and commits sin.

Taubâh consists in a firm and sincere reso­lution to abstain from sins, so as to assure God of one’s unwillingness to commit them in future; and in compensating, to one’s best ability, those one has harmed in any way …

Taubâh is the basis of all developments, as the ground is for the foundation of a building. The chief requisite is Îmân (peace, faith, or moral sense). Taubâh and Îmân appear together, and the latter illumines the heart in proportion to the former.

The real Taubâh lies in turning from one’s nature. When the disciple turns from his nature he becomes another; i.e., he does not become another man, but his qualities change. Then he unfolds true Îmân, which sweeps away many-ness and leads to unity. Ere the turning, Îmân is but conventional and nominal. “How long will you worship God with your tongue only? This is no better than worshipping desires. So long as thou dost not become a Moslem from within, how canst thou be a Moslem merely from without?” The lame ass of conventional faith and the lip-behaviour that we have cannot help us to tread the Path.

None ought to despair under any circumstance whatsoever. Here work is without a motive, and requires no payment. Many are instantly raised from the level of image-worship to a stage higher than the angels and heaven. The Lord does what­ever He wishes. “How” and “why” find no room here. May God make thee a seer of His, and remove thee from thyself! Do thou aspire high, though thou art low at present. O brother, human aspiration should stoop to nothing, either on earth or in heaven! “Such men are so constituted as to care for neither hell nor heaven. They seek God and God only, and spurn what is not He.”

Theosophy (Tasavvuf) is ceaseless motion, since standing water becomes stagnant. A man may corporeally be in his closet, yet his spirit may run to the Malakût* and the Jabrût.* Rapid motion, like the morning breeze, can neither be seen not grasped.—Letters 2-4.