Category Archives: Sufism

If your heart is a volcano, how shall you expect flowers to bloom?

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When you see the face of anger
look behind it
and you will see the face of pride.

Bring anger and pride
under your feet, turn them into a ladder
and climb higher.

There is no peace until you become
their master.
Let go of anger, it may taste sweet
but it kills.

Don’t become its victim
you need humility to climb to freedom.

— Jalāl ad-Dīn Muḥammad Balkhī (Rumi)

(Title by Khalil Gibran)

As the new year renews all the happiness and good tidings, hope the joyful spirit keeps glowing in the your heart forever! Happy New Year!

LET THERE BE PEACE IN THE WORLD

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Seeking Realization

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The Seeker

Realization is not an action somebody accomplishes. The idea of realizing the self implies a path from an unrealized self to a realized self. Realization of the self as a goal cannot be permanent. Something permanent has no beginning and no end. Hence the goal is already there, the self is always realized. The intention to realize the Self is itself a hindrance. Our nature is always free but we are making huge efforts to become free. Who is making these efforts and trying to realize the self? It is the I-thought that has wrongly identified itself with the mind that veils our happiness and makes realization of the self a goal. This implies two selves. A non realized self and a goal, a realized self. And here starts the whole process of searching. Going to a guru, performing rituals, reciting mantras, doing prostrations, meditating, reading books and taking all kinds of hardships upon us to walk firmly on the path towards realization hoping to reach our goal in this life. The irony in all this striving for realization is that we have never been separated from our true self. We falsely believe it to be found somewhere, to experience it, to realize it, because we search with our mind and the mind can only exist in duality. So, our task is to find the real nature of the mind. We will discover that there is no such thing as a mind. It is in understanding that we are not the body, neither the mind that we will unveil our true self and the I-thought will be transcended eventually. We already know this freedom. If we wouldn’t know it, why would we spend our lives searching for it? But we must take care not to use wrong tools. It lies in the palm of our hands. It is beauty and love in its purest essence. We are that, lets embrace it in silence and cut those chains that hold us prisoners.

Love,

Shanti

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Kabir

They call Him Emptiness who is the Truth of truths,
in Whom all truths are stored!
There within Him creation goes forward,
which is beyond all philosophy;
for philosophy cannot attain to Him:
There is an endless world,
O my Brother! and there is the Nameless Being,
of whom naught can be said.
Only he knows it who has reached that region:
it is other than all that is heard and said.
No form, no body, no length, no breadth is seen there:
how can I tell you that which it is?

— Kabir – Songs of Kabir – LXXVI  (transl. Rabindranath Tagore)

(image source: poemhunter.com)

They call Him Emptiness

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Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Rūmī

Oh you who have devoted yourself to strife,
you have not discerned yourself from others!
Whenever you come upon a form,
you stop and say, “I am this.”
By God, you are not that! . . .
How can you be that?
You are that unique one, happy, beautiful,
and intoxicated with yourself.
You are your own bird, prey, and snare,
your  own seat of honor, carpet, and roof.
“Substance” subsists in itself,
those things that derive from it are accidents.
If you are born of Adam,
sit like him and behold his progeny within yourself.
What does the vat contain that is not in the river?
What does the room encompass that is not in the city?
This world is the vat, and the heart the running stream,
this world the room, and the heart the city of wonders.

— Jalalud’din Rumi – Mathnawi IV: 803-811 – “The Sufi Path of Love” (transl. William C. Chittick)

(image source: rumibook.info)

By God, you are not that!

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rocks crack apart
filled with passions
longing to have
a glimpse of you

soul grows wings
over-joyed with desire
flying in search of you

fire changes to water
wisdom becomes insanity
and my own eyes
turn out to be the enemy
of my sleep
as they long to see you

there is a dragon
devouring rocks and men
causing insanity
destroying peaceful lives
and calling itself love

please
don’t imprison free souls
don’t change laughter to cries
don’t press us so hard
there is no one
but you to turn to

your love demands
nothing less than
my wounded heart
and my heart is filled
with nothing but your longings

the wine jar is boiling over
someone is drinking the wine
and making the harp play itself
the sonnets to your admiration

your love entered my house
saw me without you
put its hand over my head
and said pity on you

this love journey
is surely the hardest and
most twisted road i have taken
i began the journey
but my heart
is still dragging behind
wrapped around your feet

— Jalalud’din Rumi, Ghazal 2157 (Transl. Nader Khalili)

A Heart Slain by Your Hand

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When I am with you, we stay up all night.
When you’re not here, I can’t go to sleep.

Praise God for these two insomnias!
And the difference between them.

The minute I heard my first love story
I started looking for you, not knowing
how blind that was.

Lovers don’t finally meet somewhere.
They’re in each other all along.

We are the mirror as well as the face in it.
We are tasting the taste this minute
of eternity. We are pain
and what cures pain, both. We are
the sweet cold water and the jar that pours.

I want to hold you close like a lute,
so we can cry out with loving.

You would rather throw stones at a mirror?
I am your mirror, and here are the stones.

— Jalalud’din Rumi – Extract from “Music Master” – The Essential Rumi (transl. Coleman Barks & John Moyne)

Dualities

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Suppose you know the definitions
of all substances and their products,
what good is this to you?
Know the true definition of yourself.
That is essential.
Then, when you know your own definition, flee from it,
that you may attain to the One who cannot be defined,
O sifter of the dust.

— Jalalud’din Rumi – Sifter of Dust – The Rumi Collection

Sifter of Dust