“Christian, Jew, Muslim, shaman, Zoroastrian, stone, ground, mountain, river, each has a secret way of being with the mystery, unique and not to be judged.”
Recently, Rumi was thought of as the favorite poet of Americans. Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Rūmī was born 805 years ago today in the village of Wakhsh, in the province of Balkh in Persia. His native province was a major cultural center. Much of Rumi’s life was lived under the Persian Sultanate of Rum. This is the place he composed his poetry and prose.
“Let the beauty we love be what we do.”
Rumi served in many capacities. He was a jurist, theologian, Sufi mystic, and Islamic poet. His insights transcend ethnicity, nationality, and religiosity. His works can be found in most of the major languages of the world.
“In truth everything and everyone Is a shadow of the Beloved, And our seeking is His seeking And our words are His words… We search for Him here and there, while looking right at Him. Sitting by His side, we ask: ‘O Beloved, where is the Beloved?”
The reader can keep in mind Rumi’s basic theme. The desire to restore the union with the primal root of being. It is this union with our basic nature of which we are estranged. Rumi believed that people should use poetry, music and dance as a path to connect with their inner sanctum.
“We rarely hear the inward music, but we’re all dancing to it nevertheless.”
In Rumi’s view, music and dance helps one to focus the entire being on the divine. He encouraged listening to music and spinning the sacred dance of the Mevlevi traditional Sama practice. We know the practitioners today as Whirling Dervishes.
Rumi’s benchmark composition is the Matnawlye Ma’nawi. It is a six volume poem, thought by many, as the Persian language equivalant of the Qur’an. The work consists of around 27,000 lines of poetry.
“Be like a river in generosity and giving help. Be like a sun in tenderness and pity. Be like night when covering other’s faults. Be like a dead when furious and angry. Be like earth in modesty and humbleness. Be like a sea in tolerance. Be as you are or as you look like.”
His other major publication is the Diwan-e Shams-e Tabrizi|Dīwān-e Shams-e Tabrīzī – The Works of Shams of Tabriz in honor or Rumi’s teacher Shams. It contains 35,000 Persian couplets, 2,000 quatrains, many Arabic passages, and some poems in mixed Persian and Turkish. There are a few in Greek Persian as well.
Rumi is also known for his prose. A collection of his teachings is found in the book In It, What’s In It. Seven Sessions contains seven sermons in Persian. And Makatib is the book of letters to his disciples, family and men of influence.
Even though Rumi’s poetry is considered to be ecumenical by today’s standards, it must be remembered that he considered outward practice and study of the Qur’an to be of utmost importance. One unpublished work of Rumi contains several thousand verses that can be thought of as direct translations to Persian of portions of the Qur’an.
I hope you will consider investigating and savoring more of the works of Rumi.
The Blue Jay of Happiness likes this: “The intelligent want self-control; children want candy.”