Edited and Slides by Omar K Neusser
15 The Entire Cosmos: ‘the Breath of the All-Merciful
Ibn al-ʿArabī offers several versions of this scheme. In one of the better-known schemes, he describes the entire cosmos as ‘the Breath of the All-Merciful.’ Each thing in the universe is a letter, a word, a sentence, or a book uttered by God and situated at an appropriate level of deployment within the Breath, just as our own spoken words are situated within our breath in a specific manner.
Each created thing is thus a precise enunciation of the Real Being, and each has its own role to play in the book of creation.
Once the spoken things are deployed in God’s Breath, they move back to their origin in a series of stages. This process might be called an ‘evolution,’ since it reverses the prior devolution and brings about the completion of the great circle of being (dâʾirat al-wujûd). 
Muhyiddin Ibn `Arabi; Presentation of Some 29 Texts
 On existence as a circle in Ibn al-ʿArabī’s teachings, see Chittick, The Self-Disclosure of God (Albany: SUNY Press, 1998), pp. 220–34.