Thursday, July 03, 2008

[Sunlight] Story of the secluded dervish



Love for Certain Work

Traveling is as refreshing for some
as staying at home is for others.

Solitude in a mountain place
fills with companionship for this one,
and dead-weariness for that one.

This person loves being in charge
of the workings of a community.
This one loves the ways that heated iron
can be shaped with a hammer.

Each has been given a strong desire
for certain work. A love for those motions,
and all motion is love.

The way sticks and pieces of dead grass
and leaves shift about in the wind
and with the direction of rain and
puddle-water on the ground,
those motions are all a following
of the love they've been given.

-- Mathnawi III, 1616-1619
Version by Coleman Barks
Rumi: One-Handed Basket Weaving
Maypop, 1991

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Just as staying at home is easy for some,
traveling comes easy to others.
Each of us was made for some particular work,
and the desire for that work has been placed in our hearts.
How should hand and foot be set in motion without desire?
If you see your desire leading toward Heaven,
unfold your wings to claim it;
but if you see your desire bends to the earth,
keep lamenting.
The wise weep in the beginning;
the foolish beat their heads at the end.
Discern the end from the beginning
so that you may not be repenting
when the Day of Reckoning arrives.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Hamchonânke sahl shod mâ-râ hazar
sahl shod ham qawl digar-râ safar
Har kasi-râ bahr-e kâri sâkhtand
mayl-e ân-râ dar delesh andâkhtand
Dast o pâ bi mayl jonbân kay shavad
khâr o khas bi âb o bâdi kay ravad
Gar be-bini mayl-e khvod su-ye samâ
par-e dawlat bar goshâ hamchon homâ
Var be-bini mayl-e khvod su-ye zamin
nawheh mi kon hich ma-neshin az hanin
`qelân khvod nawh-hâ pishin konand
jâhelân âkher be-sar bar mi zanand
Ze ebtedâ-ye kâr âkher-râ be-bin
tâ na-bâshi to pashimân Yawm-e Din

-- Mathnawi, III:1616-1623
Version by Camille and Kabir Helminski
"Rumi: Jewels of Remembrance"
Threshold Books, 1996
Persian transliteration courtesy of Yahyá Monastra

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Story of the secluded dervish:

There was a dervish dwelling in a mountainous place:
solitude was his bedfellow and boon-companion.
Since the refreshing breeze* (of favour) was coming for him
from the Creator, he was weary of the breaths of man and
Just as staying at home is easy to us, so traveling is easy to
another class of people.
In the same way as thou art in love with dominion, that
worthy man is in love with the ironsmith's handicraft.
Every one has been made for some particular work, and the
desire for that (work) has been put into his heart.
How should sticks and straws go (from their place) without any
water or wind?
If thou see (that) thy desire (is) towards Heaven, unfold the
wings of empire, like the Huma* ;
But if thou see (that) thy desire (is) towards the earth, keep
lamenting, cease not at all from moaning.
The wise, indeed, make lamentations at first; the foolish beat
their heads at the last.
From the beginning of the affair discern the end (thereof), so
that thou mayst not be repenting on the Day of Judgment.

-- from: Book III, 1614-23
Translation and Commentary by Reynold A. Nicholson
The Mathnawi of Jalalu'ddin Rumi
Published and Distributed by
The Trustees of The "E.J.W. Gibb Memorial"

* Literally, "the north-wind."
* The lammergeier (great bearded vulture). According to popular belief
the falling of its shadow on any one was a sign that he would become king.




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