Friday, December 26, 2008

For Sages, no candle or beautiful lover exists outside the Self - Ode 1247

The Sages have no Light or Beauty outside the Self
Rumi, Ode 1247, Book of the Sun
Translated by Ali Arsanjani

Shahed = beautiful lover/beloved
Sham’= candle
Aref = Sage
Khoon = blood
Jahan = World
Leili = equivalent of Julliette, a beautiful beloved
Majnoon = Romeo equivalent; someone insanely/mad/uncommonly in love

For the Sage, there is no candle or pretty face outside the Self
Nor have they drunk the blood of a grape; wine is already in their blood

In this world, people become enraptured with a beloved;
Enraptured with every breath, the Sage’s beloved is the Self

Our values and assessment bases change; even by the hour!
From now on: use the unit of your actions to measure, so you can judge fairly

Ridding the Pharaoh of ego from the Egypt of your body
Inside, you will witness a state with your own Moses and Heron

The anchor of lowly treasure you have tied to your foot;
that takes you deeper into the depths every day

I saw a Jonas sitting at the seashore of the ocean of love,
I asked him: “How are you?” He replied. Using my own law !

He told me “I used to be a fish's meal, in this ocean
So I bent myself like the letter 'n' {Persian "nun") ; and now I command the fish!"

From now on, ask us not how we are: go beyond these "hows",
For how can someone speak of how they are, when they have gone beyond all descriptions of “how”?

Let the Sorrowful drink wine, our hearts are more joyous than thine!
Give the prisoners of sorrow their poison! Go, O bearer of wine!

Khoone gham bar ma halal o , khoone ma bar gham haram
Har ghami gerde ma shod, Shod andar khoon e khish!

He has encouraged us, sorrow to slay
He has banned sorrow from existing this way, from living another day

The sorrow that dares come our way, Will not live to see another day

Wine may flush their faces, those sick with sorrow,
We are rosy-cheeked from our own joy; we do not borrow



Yesterday the astrologer declared: I saw your horoscope; it was favorable
Yes, I told him, and yet this is due my Moon, waxing daily

But, then again, how can the moon compare to our Moon?
Whose face and horoscope determine
Great malefics, Great Benefics, who are governed by it[s majesty]

Sunday, December 21, 2008

The Reedflute has a tale to Tell

Listen to this reedFlute, it has a tale to tell
It is complaining of all separations

The story of the reedflute is that it was torn from the reedbed, it's source,
and so it wants to gain a way of recourse to its original state of union.
This is why it is complaining because it wants to return to the source.

sine khahan sharhe sharhe az feragh
ta begooyam sharhe darde eshtiagh

Give me a heart torn from being apart
So [they will understand when]
I can describe the pain of enthusiasm / longing

Only someone experiencing this pain of longting to be united with their source
will be able to comprehend what I am lamenting.

And then Rumi states one of his general rules:

Har kasi koo door mand az asle khish
Baz jooyad roozegare vasle khish

Whoever is left behing from their source
will seek to regain a way of recourse
will seek to gain the days of Union

Sere man az naleye man door nist
Lik chashm o goosh ra an noor nist

Rumi starts talking about "that light"
that this light is absent from "the eye and ear".
He delcares that
"my secret is not far from my cry
but they haven't that light, the ear and eye"

If the ear and eye, my sense would have "that light" the
ability to truly see and truly hear, they would know that
the key to my secret is not far from my wail, my cry, my moan


Reading on the night of Dec 17th, 2008

We had a reading at the University Library to commemorate the passage of Rumi, on the night of Dec 17th. We also started the Rumi Returns series which will be reading out the book that I am translating.

The program was as follows:

Introduction to Rumi
His Life and Times -- Significant milestones, meeting Shams, his master
Dec 17th – His Passage – Fanaa fe’Allah
Celebrating his life
Eid e Ghadir -- Ali
Starting Rumi Returns series
The Tale of the Reed Flute

Book of Shams
O You Lovers – the audience, who are lovers of Rumi
Little by little – you come into the refined attention you need
You soul is so close to mine – now that you can hear, hear this:
I am the moon -- now you can understand what Rumi is saying when he says...
How should I know? -- Once he is one with the Divine and the Divine is calling him, he responds...

Note the sequence is designed to prepare the listener to first become a "Lover"
of the divine, then as a Lover, they come closer and closer to the "garden" the place of Truth. Then they are so close to their innermost Self that they know what their Friend is thinking; I am so close to you, I know your every thought". Once you are so close, you can then see that you are the Moon and in the Place of Noplace. And finally with being one with the Divine being so powerful, it changes ones world and shifts one's consciousness, to the extent that when in a beautiful dialog with the Beloved, Rumi responds, in total surrender, with "How would I know? How should I know? How can I Know? "; you are asking me questions that are intellectual, I have given up my intellect and mind and ego to be one with you -- "How would I know why?"

The Tale of the Lion and the Rabbit , Part 1
story: The Animals and the Lion enter an agreement
concepts: Tavvakkol vs Jahd (Trust and Faith in Providence vs. Action, Means and Trying)
concepts: The superiority we gain through Knowledge
concepts: Keeping your plans a secret

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Ode 1518 - I am the moon - Rumi, Book of the Sun

Refined translation, thanks to Dr. Maryam Daftari, Parastoo and Sam Arsanjani.

I am the moon in the place of Noplace,
I am Life Itself -- don't search for me outside!

When people call you, they are summoning you to themselves
But when I call you, I will summon you only to your Self!

Whatever color you wish to bring upon me -- I won't mind:
Whether the brightness of hope or the gloom of shame,

Sometimes you are contrary and utter disloyal words
That's right! If you are like that, I will be thus!

In the presence of the blind, I am thus -- Nothingness
In the presence of the deaf ear, I am thus -- Speechless

Why are you washing your eyes with rosewater?
You can stop washing -- Look, I am the Flower!

[To see the clearly apparent flower, you do not need to wash your eyes with flowerwater]

You use Colorful flowers for your clothing and meals :
[Everything you put on and in you is from flowers [-- Thanks to Parastoo]]
You are a flower-eater -- you should not be my guest...!

This flower is *the* Flower! Look closely: you can see the presence of Grace!
With this Grace, I give back what was borrowed

Speech is a ship and meaning is the sea;
Make haste! Come out! I want to sail this vessel!