Thursday, October 05, 2006

"So that you might know your true self"

Your true substance is concealed in falsehood,
like the taste of butter in buttermilk.
Your falsehood is this perishable body;
your truth is that exalted spirit.
For many years, this buttermilk of the body
is visible and manifest, while the butter, which is the spirit,
is perishing and ignored within it—
until God sends a prophet, a chosen servant,
a shaker of the buttermilk in the churn,
who skillfully shakes it, so that you might know
your true self which was hidden.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Jawhar-e sedqet khafi dar dorugh
hamcho ta`m-e rawghan andar ta`m-e dugh
n dorughet in tan-e fâni bovad
râstet ân jân-e rabbâni bovad
Sâl-hâ in dugh-e tan paydâ o fâsh
rawghan-e jân andaru fâni o lâsh
Tâ ferestad Haqq rasuli bandeh-'i
dugh-râ dar khomreh jonbânandeh-'i
Tâ be-jonbânad be-hanjâr o be-fann
tâ be-dânam man keh panhân bud-e man

-- Mathnawi IV: 3030-3034
Version by Camille and Kabir Helminski
"Rumi: Jewels of Remembrance"
Threshold Books, 1996
(Persian transliteration courtesy of Yahyá Monastra)

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