Foundation, NJ U. S. A
the Message Continues ... 12/91
Newsletter for March 2009
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A shout comes out of my room
where I've been cooped up.
After all my lust and dead living
I can still live with you.
You want me to.
You fix and bring me food.
You forget the way I've been.
The ocean moves and surges in the heat
of the middle of the day, in the heat
of this thought I'm having.
Why aren't all human resistances burning up
with this thought?
It's a drum and arms waving.
It's a bonfire at midnight
on the top edge of a hill,
this meeting again with you.
Version by Colemna Barks
Threshold Books, 1984
Ghazal (Ode) 2110, from Rumi's "Diwan-e
A cry went up from my tavern,
the heavens were split by my litany:
Finally victory has arrived,
the Beloved has entered to tend me.
Lord, lord, how He is aching, my
unequaled Beloved, to recompense me!
That philosophers' stone makes obedience
and faith from my neglect and unbelief and sins.
After my shortcomings He bestows a palace,
after my slips He bestows victuals.
He causes the heart of sea and mountain to
surge from the heat of the day of my encounter.
If the thoughts of man were not a veil,
they would be burnt to ashes by my thoughts.
My drum and flag, my cry and shouting
would strike agitation in the army of the spirit.
The fire of my tryst at midnight would strike
flames into the horizon of the sky.
Translation by A.J. Arberry
"Mystical Poems of Rumi 2"
The University of Chicago Press, 1991
The Sunrise Ruby
One morning a beloved said to her lover to test him,
I wonder, do you love me more, or yourself?
Tell the truth, oh man of sorrows!"
He replied, "I have been so annihilated within
thee that I am full of thee from head to foot.
Nothing is left of my own existence but the
name. In my existence, oh sweet one, there is naught
I have been annihilated like vinegar in an ocean
In the same way, a stone transformed into a
flawless ruby has become full of the attributes of the
The description of that stone does not remain
within it – full of the sun's description, front and back.
Should it love itself, then that will be love for
the sun, oh youth!
Should it love the sun to the bottom of its soul,
without doubt it will be in love with itself.
Translation by William C. Chittick
"The Sufi Path of Love- The Spiritual Teachings of Rumi"
State University of New York Press, Albany, 1983
At the hour of the morning-drink a beloved said to her lover
by way of trial, "O such-and-such son of such-and-such,
I wonder, do you love me or yourself more? Tell the truth,
O man of sorrows."
He replied, "I have become so naughted in thee that I am
full of thee from head to foot.
Of my existence there is nothing (left) in me but the name:
in my being there is naught but thee, O thou whose wishes are
By that means I have become thus naughted, like vinegar, in
thee (who are) an ocean of honey."
As the stone that is entirely turned into pure ruby: it is filled
with the qualities of the sun.
That stony nature does not remain in it: back and front, it is
filled with sunniness.
Afterwards, if it love itself, that (self-love) is love of the sun,
And if it love the sun with (all) its soul, `tis undoubtedly love
Whether the pure ruby loves itself or whether it loves the sun,
There is really no difference in these two loves: both sides
(aspects) are naught but the radiance of the sunrise.
Until it (the stone) has become a ruby, it is an enemy to itself,
because it is not a single "I": two "I's" are there;
For the stone is dark and blind to the day (-light): the dark is
essentially opposed to light.
(If) it love itself, it is an infidel, because it offers intense
resistance to the supreme Sun.
Therefore `tis not fitting that the stone should say "I," (for)
it is wholly darkness and in (the state of) death.
A Pharaoh said, "I am God" and was laid low; a Mansur
(Hallaj) said, "I am God" and was saved.
The former "I" is followed by God's curse and the latter
"I" by God's mercy, O loving man;
For that one (Pharaoh) was a black stone, this one (Hallaj) a
cornelian; that one was an enemy to the Light, and this one
passionately enamoured (of it).
This "I," O presumptuous meddler, was "He" (God) in the inmost
consciousness, through oneness with the Light, not
through (belief in) the doctrine of incarnation.
Strive that thy stony nature may be diminished, so that thy
stone may become resplendent with the qualities of the ruby.
Show fortitude in (enduring) self-mortification and affliction;
continually behold everlasting life in dying to self.
(Then) thy stoniness will become less at every moment, the
nature of the ruby will be strengthened in thee.
The qualities of (self-) existence will depart from thy body,
the qualities of intoxication (ecstasy) will increase in thy head
(thy spiritual centre).
Become entirely hearing, like an ear, in order that thou mayst
gain an ear-ring of ruby.*
Translation by Reynold A. Nicholson
"The Mathnawi of Jalalu'ddin Rumi"
Published and Distributed by
The Trustees of The "E.J.W. Gibb Memorial
* Literally, "an ear-ring (consisting) of a ruby ring."
Soul of the Seeker
Note: Rumi's Ghazal (Ode) 791, from the
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