He readily obeyed the summons and followed the man. As he stepped in, he felt as if he had sunk into a sea of peace and tranquility. It was a beautiful garden. In delightful scenery, it was, infact, rivalling an Elysian landscape. The rose and jasmine plants growing in rows in green beds, half-budding and half blossoming, sending forth fragrant breezes; straight, pointed, pyramid-like cypress trees lining the broad avenues, like the lining of giants of the medieval ages proudly looking down upon the pigmy-sized flower-pots arranged in good order below them, fountains playing at intervals filling the surrounding atmosphere with hazy spray, were furnishing an exquisite sight, charming to the eye.
The new-comer was led on and on, through this refreshing happy mixture of natural and artificial phenomena, to the opposite end of the garden, where there was a magnificient building with a big dome-roofed hall in the middle. Entering the hall, he saw some 40 men sitting all in a squatting meditative attitude with their heads hanging down and their eyes down-cast, presided over by a tall majestic human figure with his luxuriant white curls rolling down loosely on his back, and his eyes closed, occupying a raised seat in the middle of the facing rows at the base of the front wall. As the new-comer was ushered in the president of the august assembly raised his head, and opened his bright, keen, clear eyes, and eyed the stranger from head to foot.