Sep 27, 2006

Whirling Dervishes

I have been reading the 13th century Sufi poet Mawlana Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Rumi, known simply as Rumi. The first word means 'lord', and Rumi is a signifier of origin.

Come to the orchard in spring
There is light and wine
And sweethearts
In the pomegranate flowers

If you do not come
These do not matter
If you do come
These do not matter

***
I have lived on the lip of insanity
Wanting to know reasons
Knocking on a door, it opens
I have been knocking from the inside!

***

The minute I'm disappointed
I feel encouraged.
When I'm ruined
I'm healed.
When I'm quiet
and solid as the ground
Then I talk
the low tones of thunder
for everyone

***

A Time for Madness

Once more,
Love is pouring down my ceiling
and my walls.
Once more, it's the night of the full moon,
it is time for madness.
All my immense knowledge
cannot help me now.
Once more,

Insomnia took my patience.
Rain washed away my intellect.
The Lover made me lose my profession.
What good is my work anyway?

Once more, rise, rise, rise,

Like the way a garden burns
in a hundred shades of orange in the fall,
a Lover's heart shrivels for a sense of the Beloved's touch.
Now the face of that charred garden
is my field of flowers.

Look, two hundred Jupiters
are dancing around my moon.

My Love business is booming,
but don't credit the consultants.
I am done with the consultants
and the pundits,
they call you Jafar the imposter.
Little do they know,
that you are my Shams the Flyer.

Some more love poetry here, better verses - here. I guess it depends on the translator;)

He was a mystic, a theologian, a poet, and a lover. In his lifetime, Rumi was inspired by another dervish, Shams Tabriz-i, who was his mentor, friend, and allegedly lover. Shams disappeared mysteriously after spending several years with Rumi. Suffering in bereavement, Rumi attributed many of his works to him, expressing his love and sorrow.

Rumi is best known as the founder of the Whirling Dervishes, or Mevlevi Order who worship God in the form of song and dance ceremony called sema. An annual festival is held each December in Konya, Turkey, in commemoration of this saint-like figure whose dying day is celebrated as his 'wedding' to God. They are open to other religions and are a very tolerant denomination of Islam:

Whoever you may be, come
Even though you may be
An infidel, a pagan, or a fire-worshipper, come
Our brotherhood is not one of despair
Though you have broken
Your vows of repentance a hundred times, come.

And because everything is connected to everything, here's my dervish from the latest Guild Wars event.

If I get Nightfall, I strongly suspect my character's name will be Shams Tabrizi:)


3 comments:

stuffedman said...

:))))
since i am about to consider some Nightfall experience myself i guess it's only fair to warn you that the name Astarabadi is already taken, so, there is a chance the servers of the game turn into some kind of theological battleground:) perhaps then we would be able to witness some AI mystical personification, but then again, those things used to end in blood in the middle ages...
anyway, these do not matter:)

Hazel Baggins said...

@ stuffedman

It's only fair to warn you that in Guild Wars your character must have TWO names. So you lose the first theological battle:D Sometimes, ignorance is not bliss;)

stuffedman said...

you win this fight, but the war is far from over yet:) make it Fadlullah Astarabadli then:)