l0. By its very nature, the royal authority claims
all glory for itself and goes in for luxury and
prefers tranquility and quiet.58
As 59 to claiming all glory for itself, this is because, as we have mentioned before, royal authority exists through group feeling. Group feeling (such as leads to royal authority) is something composite that results from (the amalgamation of) many groups, one of which is stronger than all the others. Thus, (a group feeling) is able to overcome and gain power over (all the others), and, eventually, brings them all under its sway. Thus, social organization and superiority over men and dynasties come about. The secret here is that a group feeling extending over the entire tribe corresponds to the temper in the things that come into being. Temper is the product (of the mixture) of the elements. It has been explained in the proper place 60 that, when the elements are combined in equal proportions, no mixture can take place. One (element) must be superior to the others, and when (it exercises) its superiority over them, mixture occurs. In the same way, one of the various tribal group feelings must be superior to all (others), in order to be able to bring them together, to unite them, and to weld them into one group feeling comprising all the various groups. All the various groups are then under the influence of the superior group feeling.
This highest group feeling can go only to people who have a "house" and leadership among (the tribe). One of those people must be the leader who has superiority over them. He is singled out as leader of all the various group feelings, because he is superior to all the others by birth. When he is singled out for (the position of leadership), he is too proud to let others share in his leadership and control over (the people) or to let them participate in it, because the qualities of haughtiness and pride are innate in animal nature. Thus, he develops the quality of egotism (ta'alluh), which is innate in human beings.
Moreover, politics requires that only one person exercise control. Were various persons, liable to differ among each other, to exercise it, destruction of the whole could result. "If there were other gods except God in the two (heaven and earth), they (heaven and earth) would have been destroyed." 61
Thus, the aspirations of the various group feelings are blunted. People become tame and do not aspire to share with the leader in the exercise of control. Their group feeling is forced to refrain (from such aspirations). The leader takes charge all by himself, as far as possible. Eventually, he leaves no part in the power to anyone else. He thus claims all the glory for himself and does not permit the people to share in it. This may come to pass already with the first ruler of a dynasty, or it may come to pass only with the second or the third, depending on the resistance and strength of the various group feelings, but it is something unavoidable in a dynasty. This is how God proceeds with His servants.
As 62 to going in for luxury, this is because, when a nation has gained the upper hand and taken possession of the holdings of its predecessors who had royal authority, its prosperity and well-being grow. People become accustomed to a great number of things. From the necessities of life and a life of austerity, they progress to the luxuries and a life of comfort and beauty. They come to adopt the customs and (enjoy) the conditions of their predecessors. Luxuries require development of the customs necessary to produce them. People then also tend toward luxury in food, clothing, bedding (carpets), and household goods. They take pride in such things and vie with other nations in delicacies, gorgeous raiment, and fine mounts. Every new generation wants to surpass the preceding one in this respect, and so it goes right down to the end of the dynasty. The larger the realm ruled by a dynasty, the greater is the share of its people in these luxuries. The limit eventually to be reached is set for a particular dynasty by its own power and by the customs of its predecessors.
This is how God proceeds with His creatures.
As 63 to preferring tranquility and quiet, this is because a nation obtains royal authority only by pressing its claims, having in mind the purpose of obtaining superiority and royal authority. When this purpose is accomplished, all efforts cease.
I wondered at the busy efforts fate made in connection with my relationship with her.
Then, when our relationship had ended, fate became quiet.64
When people have obtained the royal authority, they no (longer) do the tiresome chores they had been used to undertake while still in search of it. They prefer rest and quiet and tranquility. Now they seek to enjoy the fruits of royal authority, such as buildings, dwellings, and clothing. They build castles and install running water.65 They plant gardens and enjoy life. They prefer rest to tiresome chores. They take pride in clothing, food, household goods, and bedding (carpets), as much as possible. They get used to this (attitude) and pass it on to later generations. It continues to grow in their midst, until God permits His command to be executed.