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RUMI REVELATIONS: Wisdom, not reason

In consciousness, excerpts and quotes, literature, Rumi Revelations, sources of knowledge, spirituality on September 15, 2011 at 8:57 pm

In today’s edition of Rumi revelations, the commentary I have interspersed my selections with relates these more directly with the discussion of the last post.

 

In:

A COMMUNITY OF THE SPIRIT↓1

 

There is a community of the spirit.

Join it, and feel the delight

of walking in the noisy street,

and being the noise.

.

Drink all your passion,

and be a disgrace.

.

Close both eyes

to see with the other eye.

.

Open your hands,

if you want to be held.

Quit acting like a wolf, and feel

the shepherd’s love filling you.

Be empty of worrying.

Think of who created thought!

.

Why do you stay in prison

when the door is so wide open?

__________________

A QUATRAIN↓2

How long will we fill our pockets

Like children with dirt and stones?

Let the world go. Holding it

We never know ourselves, never are air-born.

_______________________

The essence of our nature is “experiential”. We experience things at first hand in such a way that the emotional, sensorial, social, intellectual, and linguistic sides are enmeshed with each other↓3. The ‘pragmatic’ world however teaches us to think purely in intellectual terms: concepts, logic, and language. Thus we come to dissociate subject matters of study from the daily reality of our lives and from the intricacies of our personality,  and from the way we are actually designed to experience the world. Subject matters which are all connected to the reality of ourself and our world, which lead us to significant questions of the meaningfulness of our lives, they are experienced as ‘dry’, ‘boring’ or ‘pedantic’ by many a student for these reasons.

Even those supposedly at the highest levels of intellectual development come to emphasize rationalism and intellectualism at the expense of the social, emotional, and intuitive sides of our nature possibly because of the natural association of language with the former approaches to life. And perhaps also becuase of the illsuion of certainty which logic creates. The social-emotional side of experience does not deal with ‘arguments’ and ‘logic’, rationalism does. Also the apparent comfort of the unemotionality of dry reason may be a source of refuge for these scholars who having lost touch with their affective intuitions must now feel all the more perturbed recasting ‘the big questions of the world’ in purely intuitive and experiential terms rather than (‘safely’ and ‘distantly’) dissecting and pruning them according to their own scholarly specializations.

And thus the majority of us remain confined in the ‘jail’ of this rationality, never having the strength to step out and experience the huge possibilities of meaningfulness and deeper ecstasies of life once the shackles of pure reason are thrown away.

______________________

QUIETNESS↓4

 

Inside this new love, die.

Your way begins on the other side.

Become the sky.

Take an axe to the prison wall.

Escape.

Walk out like someone suddenly born into color.

Do it now.

You’re covered with thick cloud.

Slide out the side. Die,

and be quiet. Quietness is the surest sign

that you’ve died.

Your old life was a frantic running

from silence.

.

The speechless full moon

comes out now.

__________________

In:

THE THREE BROTHERS AND THE CHINESE PRINCESS↓5

                              The fire under the kettle is the appearance.

The boiling water is the reality.

                                                                The beloved is in your veins

though he or she may seem to have a form outside you.

________________________________

In:

AN AWKWARD COMPARISON↓6

Language does not touch the one

who lives in each of us.

_______________________

 We become so conditioned by the ways of this world, we never realize that the access to the mysteries of the more actual reality is on the side of experience we abandoned many many years ago: the inside. There are several commonalities between death and our inside. One of them is silence. The silence of death is obvious. Our inside is indeed silent in terms of it’s nature being pre-verbal. Intuition, emotion, and the phenomenon of simple ‘immersion’ in some experience (in contrast to consciously thinking and analyzing it) are ‘holistic’ in nature: they can’t be broken down into components and laws (in contrast with, say, language which has parts of speech and rules of grammar). They are also intransferable. One’s inner experience simply cannot be translated ‘as is’ for other’s perfect understanding, or transmitted somehow into their minds. Thus our inner experience is as uniquely ours and only ours to go through as death will be.

On the other hand, the ‘worldly’ knowledges possess both these characteristics and hence often succeed too perfectly in capturing our conscious lives int their hold. Just like death will finally remove this curtain of wordly ‘outside’ experience and we will realize what we could not see before, reconnecting with our silent inner experiecne can achieve the same before the time of death arrives. May be it’s this potential of this inner side of things and the superficial comfort and time-passing quality of the outer wordly side of life that many of us literally run away from any moments of silence. Movies, games, gossip, shopping, feasting, drugs, fashion, or illicit meetings with the other sex, anything will do so as time alone (= time with oneself, when inner voices become less avoidable) will not have to be confronted.

__________________

When once, however, the inner mirror has come clear of the breath of the outer world, recognizing the truth is not that difficult:

 

MYSTICS KNOW↓7

 

Since wisdom is the true believer’s stray camel*, he knows it with certainty

               from whomsoever, he may have heard of it,

And when he finds himself face to face with it, how should there be doubt?

               How can he mistake?

If you tell a thirsty man — ‘Here is a cup of water: drink!’–

Will he reply? — ‘This is mere assertion: let me alone, O liar, go away.’

Or suppose a mother cries to her babe, ‘Come, I am mother: hark my child!’ —

Will it say? — ‘Prove this to me, so that I may take comfort in thy milk.’

When in the heart of a people there is spiritual perception, the face and voice

               of the prophet are as an evidentiary miracle.

When the prophet utters a cry from without, the soul of the people falls to

               worship within,

Because never in the world will the soul’s ear have heard a cry of the same

               kind as his.

That wondrous voice is heard by the soul in exile — the voice of God calling, ‘Lo, I am nigh.’

*A reference to a saying attributed to Hazrat Ali (razi-Allahu unh): “The faithful seek the knowledge of God which they possessed in past eternity and recognize it immediately when found.”  

_______________________

 

Notes:

1. Translated by Coleman Barks, in Everyman’s Library Pocket Poets: RUMI, p. 32-33

2. Translated by Andrew Harvey, in above, p. 60.

3. Even neuroscientists have now studied the brain to the extent of realizing that the brain indeed works in such a ‘holistic’ fashion. There may be separate brain areas specializing in certaint types of experience (for instance vision, sound, language, emotions, etc) but they are all interconnected and are working together whenever we are learning something somewhere. [Readings on topics such as ‘neural circuits’ and ‘plasticity of the brain’ will lead any reader to authentic primary sources.]Psychologists have studied a small part of this phenomenon called as learning by conditioning: When the emotional or social sides are vivid, we come to associate them forever with the new conept we have learned. For instance, reading a certain poem may always give happy feelings not just because it talks about a peaceful moment in life but beause we used to read it in our childhood in some pleasant family circumstance. Similarly some topics are forever emotionally aversive to us because of the negative attitudes of the teacher.

4. Translated by Coleman Barks, in same as 1 & 2, p. 69.

5. Translated by above, in above, pp. 111-8.

6. Same as above, p. 139.

7. Translated by Reynold Nicholson, in same as 1, 2, 4, 5, & 6, pp. 132-3.

 

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RUMI REVELATIONS: True knowledge, and actual ignorance

In excerpts and quotes, God, literature, philosophy, poetry, Quran, Rumi Revelations, sources of knowledge, The Method on September 4, 2011 at 11:59 pm

The insights revealed by literature are sometimes more powerful and incisive than the best of sciences…

I have found many extracts from Rumi’s spiritual outpourings that expand and illuminate on the current topic of this blog.

My interspersed commentary is an attempt to both link the extracts and make them more accessible to readers. Note that any underlining in the excerpted poetry is mine.

 

Rumi on the true versus the weak sources of real knowledge↓:

1. A QUATRAIN

Ignorent men  are the soul’s enemy

Shatter the jar of smug words

Cling for life to those who know

Prop a mirror in water, it rusts

———-

We are coming straight from a discussion with the upshot that how science, despite all the progress it has incurred, must still fall short on revealing the true nature of this world and the truest guidelines for human living. It’s the divine which makes up for this lack in our lives, not the human. The wordy lectures and papers of the self-claimed ‘learned’ men while ‘informative’, actually tell us nothing about what we really need to know.

____________________________________________

2. A QUATRAIN

Reason, leave now! You’ll not find wisdom here!

Were you thin as a hair, there’d still be no room.

The Sun is risen! In its vast dazzle

Every lamp is drowned.

—————-

From:

3. STORY WATER

Water, stories, the body,

all the things we do, are mediums

that hide and show what’s hidden.

Study them,

and enjoy this being washed

with a secret we sometimes know

and then not.

————

4. From

GOD IN NATURE

Ascend from materiality into the world of spirits, hearken to the loud voice of the universe;

Then thou wilt know that God is glorified by all inanimate things: the doubts raised by false interpreters will not beguile thee.

———————–

5. From

IMMEDIATE KNOWLEDGE

Come, recognize that your sensation and imagination and understanding are like the reed-cane on which children ride.

The spiritual man’s knowledge bears him aloft; the sensual man’s knowledge is a burden.

God hath said, Like an ass laden with books: heavy is the knowledge that is not inspired by Him;

But if you carry it for no selfish ends, the load will be lifted and you will feel delight.

____________________________________________________________________

God with His Brilliance and Actuality certainly pales any other source of enlightenment and illumination possible. Not only that, Our Creator’s mysterious workings and intricate powers seem to have enmeshed themselves with the fabric of the ‘apparent’ world created for our temporary existence. Such that the closest possible examination of any corner or pattern on the tapestry of this world either blinds us (given the Dazzle of the Source of things). Burdened by the contradictory and mutative conclusions from our observations and the enigma of explaining what we can see and can’t see in the terms of our limited understanding, we remain ignorant and indifferent to the Light. Or, we experience a touch of the dazzle ourselves in form of awe, wonderment, a sense of being in the presence of the Sacred, and a sweet and submissive urge to bow down our heads before this Source.

______________________

6. A QUATRAIN

Body of earth, don’t talk of earth

Tell the story of pure mirrors

The Creator has given you this splendour —

Why talk of anything else?

—————-

From:

7. IF YOU DON”T HAVE

you’ve carved a wooden horse

riding and calling it real

fooling yourself in life

though only a wooden horse

ride it again my friend

and gallop to the next post

you’ve never really listened

to what God has always

tried to tell you

—————–

In the physical world, every level of existence (such as the cultural, the individual, the biological, the chemical, and the subatomical) requires it’s own set of explanatory processes and phenomena. How can we claim to deduce understandings of how this world was created by restricting ourselves to the level of this earth? This will never be possible, unless we stop taking the things of this earth as the end of the road, as the literal reality itself. We must take them instead as signs, pointers or mirrors to the deeper nature of things at a level far far beyond the earthly. Instead of restricting ourselves to the details of this earth, we should move ahead to what this detail signifies: the magnificence, the splendour, the sublimity of how it all came to be.

_____________________

8. A QUATRAIN

I have lived on the lip

of insanity, wanting to know reasons,

knocking on a door. It opens.

I’ve been knocking from the inside!

—————–

And so external observations are not the end of the road for the one earnest seeker of the Truth. After you’ve completed your observations, then, like Ibrahim, you must close the door of externality and turn on the fountain of contemplation from within.

___________________________

From:

9. THE TRUTH WITHIN US

‘Twas a fair orchard, full of trees and fruit

And vines and greenery. A Sufi there

Sat with eyes closed, his head upon his knee,

Sunk deep in meditation mystical.

‘Why,’ asked another, ‘dost thou not behold

These Signs of God the Merciful displayed

Around thee, which He bids us contemplate?’

‘The signs,’ he answered, I behold within;

Without is naught but symbols of the Signs.’

—————–

God has already planted the germs for recognizing the truth within us. When we trun inwards, rather than remaining blinded by the tangled mechanisms of the outer world, we come to access and reinstill these germs.

_________

From

10. THE TREASURE-SEEKER

That which is real is nearer than the neck-artery, and you have shot the arrow of thought far afield.

The philosopher kills himself with thinking. Let him run on: his back is turned to the treasure.

Most of those destined for Paradise are simpletons, so that they escape from the mischief of philosophy.

While the clever ones are pleased with the device, the simple ones rest, like babes, in the bosom of the Deviser.

————————

The huge enterprise of science is not even needed to unlock the mysteries of the universe. Those who know the art of looking within (rather than remaining stuck on the without) for answers, even if they lack the material sophistication of the externalists, have more easily acquired that personal and intimate connection with our God that we either are magnetically attracted to or crazily run away from.

____________________________________________________________________________________

I finish with an ayah and a quatrain…

إِنَّمَا يَخْشَى اللَّـهَ مِنْ عِبَادِهِ الْعُلَمَاءُ 

OF ALL His servants, only such as are endowed with [innate] knowledge stand [truly] in awe of God. (in Sura Fatir, 28)

 

11. A QUATRAIN

I know nothing any more, except

That knowing you, I know the source

Of Knowing ; this fire-spring you pull me in

Sometimes, where ‘you’ and ‘I’ burn.

 

Notes

All translations have been taken from the Rumi edition of the Everyman’s Library of Pocket Poets. In order of appearance of quoted poems, here are the translaters with page number references.

  1. Andrew Harvey, p. 60
  2. Andrew Harvey, p. 62
  3. Coleman Barks, p. 86
  4. Nicholson, p. 128
  5. Nicholson, p.130
  6. same as 2
  7. Nader Khalili, pp. 76-7
  8. Coleman Barks, p.84
  9. Nicholson, p. 93
  10. Nicholson, p. 96-7
  11. Andrew Harvey, p. 163

 

 

RUMI REVELATIONS: Understanding Ramadaan through Rumi

In excerpts and quotes, literature, poetry, psychology of religion, Ramadaan, Rumi Revelations on August 23, 2011 at 1:07 am

RAMADAN SILENCE*

 

When the Ramadan banner flies, soul restrains nature,

so it can taste its own foodl

 

The strength of horses and the intensity of fire,

these are the powers of sacrifice.

Fasting, we honor the guest.

 

Clouds of courage give rain,

because it was in this month that the Qur’an rained down,

light through an opening.

 

Grab the rope.

Be lifted out of the body’s pit.

 

Announce to Egypt, Joseph of Canaan has come.

Jesus dismounts the donkey,

and the sacramental table descends.

 

Wash your hands. Wash your face.

Do not eat or speak as you normally do.

Other food and other words will come in the silence.

_________________________________

 

The concept of silence here symbolizes the fast. The silent person side-steps from the usual impulse to talk and to speak up his mind. This willing evacuation of the mind of petty distraction of conversation makes room for wisdom and insight. 

Rumis says this more eloquently in the following ghazal couplets**:

 

If you want your every atom to be eloquent and a poet,

don’t place your faith in poetry and prose, be silent.

 

If you start to talk, you will stray from your thought.

Don’t stray from your heart’s intent. Stay away from talk.

___________________________________________

 

Fast performs similar functions for us on a much broader scale. Why does performing acts God loves, with great frequency, length and recurrence become much easier in Ramadaan, than at other times? It’s not just because of the extra incentive we have in form of hope for extra reward; it’s not just due to being reinforced and encouraged by seeing nearly everyone around doing more. The fast frees us from the constant chain of distractions that our bodily ties of food and drink provide us through the day. Ordinarily, we remain mentally bound by one concern followed by another. Since hunger and thirst are of the body, naturally, other bodily and personal interests take forte as well and keep us occupied. Even when we think of doing something ‘extra’, we get lazy, feel busy, or simply forget amid the ‘stimulus overload’.

Fast provides a calm for the whole day. It also changes the schedule of daily life, thus helping to reinforce the change. The calm and peace resulting from a control on bodily hungers also weakens the force of other personal desires and lusts. Although, we feel the nutrient deprivation, we don’t even feel as much hungry as we would if we could not eat on time on a regular day. All this ‘stimulus underload’ paves the way for the better and nobler instincts of our psyche to come forward and to take lead.

If a mosque was full of chatter and banter, how could it inspire noble meditations, pious intentions and love-filled inclinations? It is the vast seclusion of the typical mosque from everything earthy and wordly that encourages those honorable attitudes.

And then….

 

A QUATRAIN^

 

This fasting sifts the soul like a sieve,

Discovering the hidden flecks of gold.

Once the soul outshines the brilliant moon,

It will tear up the veil and light up the seventh heaven.

 

 

Notes

* Translated by Coleman Barks in Rumi: The Big Red Book, 2010, New York: Harper Collins Publishers, p. 273

** Translated by Iraj Anvar and Anne Twitty in Say Nothing: Poems of Jalal al-Din Rumi in Persian and English, 2008, Sandpoint: Morning Light Press, p. 17.

^ Translated by the same as above, p. 19.

RUMI REVELATIONS: Is there anything left to say?

In excerpts and quotes, God, literature, poetry, Rumi Revelations, spirituality on August 18, 2011 at 11:01 pm

I ended my last post with the above statement.

After reading through all the reminders of our Gentle and Loving God, there can only be spontaneous outpourings from the heart (or from the eyes); tongue is amazed into silence.

And what better way than to capture the outpourings than to let Maulana Rumi talk…

The spontaneous outpourings of the humble heart…

 

From:

THE TALKING↓1

I have come here to lay my head at your feet,

to ask forgiveness,

to sit in the rose chair and burn my thorns.

 

Whatever I thought to do,

when I am here with you, is nothing.

Make my face yours.

I will shorten this poem.

Read the rest inside me.

________________________

Where Love reigns…

 

From:

BOTH WINGS BROKEN↓2

Love draws a dagger and pulls me close.

Lock and key. Bird with both wings broken.

 

The love religions is all that is written here.

Who else would say this?

 

You open me wide open, or you tie me tighter.

The ball waits on the field to be hit again.

 

You push me into fire like Abraham.

You pull me out like Mohammed.

 

Which do you like better? you ask.

All the same, if it is your hand, troubles or peace.

—–

Then comes the sure attention

of a mother’s hand for her hurt child.

____________________________

So, how to begin…?

 

From:

LOW IN THE ROOTS↓3

Love is musk.

Do not deny it when you smell the scent.

____________________________

And then…

 

From:

AND HE IS WITH US↓4

And He is with you means He is searching with you.

He is nearer to you than yourself. Why look outside?

Become like melting snow; wash yourself of yourself.

With love your inner voice will find a atongue

growing like a silent white lily in the heart.

______________________________

Finally:

How to call up this Love?

 

IN EVERY BREATH↓5

In every breath

if you’re the center

of your own desires

you’ll lose the grace

of your beloved

 

but if in every breath

you blow away

your self claim

the ecstasy of love

will soon arrive

 

in every breath

if you’re the center

of your own thoughts

the sadness of autumn

will fall on you

 

but if in every breath

you strip naked

just like a winter

the joy of spring

will grow from within

 

all your impatience

comes from the push

for gain of patience

let go of the effort

and peace will arrive

 

all your unfulfilled desires

are from your greed

for gain of fulfillments

let go of them all

and they will be sent as gifts

 

fall in love with

the agony of love

not the ecstasy

then the beloved

will fall in love with you

 

 

Notes

1, 2 & 3. Translated by Coleman Barks in Rumi: The Big Red Book, 2010, New York: Harper Collins.

4. Translated by Kabir Helminski in Everyman’s Library Pocket Poets: Rumi

5. Translated by Nader Khalili in above.

 

 

Related Posts in this blog:

Past Rumi Revelations

QURAN IN RAMADAAN: How God relates to His subjects

RUMI REVELATIONS: The Root of the Root

In excerpts and quotes, literature, poetry, Rumi Revelations, spirituality on August 14, 2011 at 3:48 am

Immediately after doing my last post of Qur’an in Ramadaan, I found the following two poems of Rumi in an astonishingly close approximation with the thesis of that post and the ones before. This time round I attempt to append my commentary on stanzas from the first poem to make the connections clearer. The second poem is too plain to need further illumination, I think. Both poems are highly motivational, uplifting, and rejuvenating as is indeed nearly all the poetry of the famed poet.

 

From:

THE ROOT OF THE ROOT OF YOUR SELF↓1

 

Don’t go away, come near.

Don’t be faithless, be faithful.

Find the antidote in the venom.

Come to the root of the root of your Self.

 

Molded of clay, yet kneaded

from the substance of certainty,

a guard at the Treasury of Holy Light —

come, return to the root of the root of your Self.

 

Once you get hold of selflessness,

you’ll be dragged from your ego

and freed from many traps.

Come, return to the root of the root of your Self.

 

You are born from the children of God’s creation,

but you have fixed your sight too low.

How can you be happy?

Come, return to the root of the root of your Self.

 

Although you are a talisman protecting a treasure,

you are also the mine.

Open your hidden eyes

and come to the root of the root of your Self.

 

You were born from a ray of God’s majesty

and have the blessings of a good star.

Why suffer at the hands of things that don’t exist?

Come, return to the root of the root of your Self.

 

You are a ruby embedded in granite.

How long will you pretend it isn’t true?

We can see it in your eyes.

Come to the root of the root of your Self.

DON’T BE BITTER MY FRIEND↓2

 

don’t be bitter my friend

you’ll regret it soon

hold to your togetherness

or surely you’ll scatter

 

don’t walk away gloomy

from this garden

you’ll end up like an owl

dwelling in old ruins

 

face the war and

be a warrior like a lion

or you’ll end up like a pet

tucked away in a stable

 

once you conquer

your selfish self

all your darkness

will change to light

 

 

Commentary

I like the term ‘the root of the root’. I wish I had access to the original Persian to see how it was expressed there. As it is, to me it reminds me of the famous adage which means: recognize yourself to recognize your God. We cannot realize the close connection we all have with our Maker unless we first establish a close connection with our own selves, accepting and facing all our limitations and faults and weaknesses for what they are.

Our nature might be transient, of clay, of atom, but our essence, the soul, is connected to one large ‘certainty’: the ultimate reality (the Treasury of Holy Light) the seed of which has already been sown inside us in form of the a-lastu bi rabbikum dialogue.

 In entangling ourselves with petty worldly needs and fears, we agree for a low existence; whereas real highness awaits us. It’s time to realize our potential to the fullest; that is our destiny, but we need to engage it with our own step forward.

 

Notes

1. Translated by Kabir Helminski in Everyman’s Library Pocket Poets: RUMI.

2. Translated by Nader Khalili in above.

RUMI REVELATIONS: Eternal reality and the journey towards God

In excerpts and quotes, God, poetry, Rumi Revelations, spirituality, universe on August 11, 2011 at 10:56 pm

COME BEGGARS ↓1

Come beggars

sit with open hands

at the gate

of nothingness

God will bring bread

without the medium

of bread

sweetness

without honey or bee

when past and future

dissolve

there is only you

senseless as a lute

upon the breast of God

———————————

From:

LOOK AT LOVE ↓2

why are you so busy

with this or that or good or bad

pay attention to how things blend

why talk about all

the known and the unknown

see how unknown merges into the known

why think separately

of this life and the next

when one is born from the last

look at water and fire

earth and wind

enemies and friends all at once

you too must mingle my friends

since the earth and the sky

are mingled just for you and me

my beloved grows

right out of my own heart

how much more union can there be

 

My two cents

Light and atom seem to join the Eternal and the transient, the Divine and the earthly in an inseparable relationship…

This enigmatic interaction created for the purpose of testing the man…. does he run away… or comes forward?

Rumi invites us to come boldly

and to plunge into the realms of eternity despite the confines of this world.

Notes

1. Translated by Daniel Liebert, in Everyman’s Library Pocket Poets: RUMI.

2. Translated by Nadir Khalili, in above.

RUMI REVELATIONS: INTRODUCTION

In Rumi Revelations on August 11, 2011 at 10:32 pm

Maulana Jalal-ud-Din Rumi needs no introduction. I remember two stimuli that instilled my interest in Rumi.

One was a small sample of a translation of his work that I read in the Dawn newspaper many many years ago. I noted some instances down in my diary. The date on my diary is of 23rd August, 1999.

Come to my side

I will open

the gate to your love.

—-

You dance inside my chest,

where no one sees you

but sometimes I do, and that

sight becomes this art.

—-

I have lived on the lip

of insanity, wanting to know reasons,

knocking on a door. It opens.

I’ve been knocking from the inside!

 The second stimulus was a Persian line by dear Dr. Allama Mohammad Iqbal, that I came across in a commemorative edition for the later by the monthly periodical on Urdu Literature Mah-e-Nau. It msut have been a few more years after the above encounter with Rumi:

پیر رومی خاک را اکسیر کرد   
 

Nobody needed to tell me the translation. The line meant: Master Rumi truned soil into ointment. The beauty of the original just cannot be translated and so I developed a longing to read more on and by Rumi. I mentioned this desire in a discussion with a good friend. He was kind enough to gift me this precious book: Life & Work of Muhammad Jalal-ud-Din Rumi by Afzal Iqbal (I have a different edition of the book from a different publisher, than as in the link). In addition to detailing Rumi’s biography, the book also charts the development of his thought and art, citing beautiful examples from Rumi’s ghazals and mashnavi with original Persian and authentic translations by experienced scholars such as Nicholson and Arberry.

And so I was initiated into the school of Rumi, though I never could become a real student, merely an occasionally indulgent delittante. Maulana Rumi was not an ordinary Islamic scholar nor an ordinary Sufi. Rather his emotional spirituality was solidly grounded on his training in Islamic sciences, hence his high status in the realms of both Islamic history and Muslim literature.

His mystical perceptions reflect their brilliance on the same mysteries I often grapple with in my blog posts. What is true reality, how can we reach it within the confines of this world, etc etc… From the birth of this blog, I have longed to share his gems with my readers. However, I’m not the copy-paste type of blogger merely posting what I like from other writings. On the other hand, interpreting Rumi’s poetry like a literary scholar is simply beyond me. Now, however, I have written enough on my blog that I don’t need to create a whole article out of one verse on Rumi. Rather, I have decided to occasionally share those excerpts from his translations ( I will add the orginial Persian where I could), which speak far more eloquently and revelatorily on the same themes I have been developing in many of my posts and with which my readers are now familiar.