Monday, April 19, 2010

[Sunlight] "Love dogs"

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LOVE DOGS

One night a man was crying, Allah! Allah!
His lips grew sweet with the praising,
until a cynic said,
"So! I have heard you calling out,
but have you ever gotten any response?"

The man had no answer to that.
He quit praying and fell into a confused sleep.

He dreamed he saw Khidr, the guide of souls,
in a thick, green foliage.

"Why did you stop praising?"

"Because I've never heard anything back."

"This longing you express IS the return message."

The grief you cry out from
draws you toward union.

Your pure sadness
that wants help
is the secret cup.

Listen to the moan of a dog for its master.
That whining is the connection.

There are love dogs
No one knows the names of.

Give your life
to be one of them.

-- Mathnawi III, 189 – 211
Version by Coleman Barks
"Say I am You"
Maypop, 1994

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One night a certain man was crying "Allah!" till his lips were
growing sweet with the praise of Him.
The Devil said, "Prithee, O garrulous one, where is the
(response) `Here am I' to all this `Allah'?
Not a single response is coming from the Throne: how long
will you cry `Allah' with grim face?"
He became broken-hearted and laid down his head (to sleep):
in a dream he saw Khadir amidst the verdure.
He (Khadir) said, "Hark, you have held back from praising
God: how is it that you repent of having called unto Him?"
He said, "No `Here am I' is coming to me in response, hence
I fear that I may be (a reprobate who is) driven away from the
Door."
He (Khadir) said, "(God saith), that `Allah' of thine is My
`Here am I,' and that supplication and grief and ardour of thine
is My messenger (to thee).
Thy shifts and attempts to find a means (of gaining access to
Me) were (in reality) My drawing (thee towards Me), and re-
leased thy feet (from the bonds of worldliness).
Thy fear and love are the noose to catch My favour; beneath
every `O Lord' (of thine) is many a `Here am I' (from Me)."
Far from this prayer is the soul of the fool, because to him it
is not permitted to cry "O Lord."
On his mouth and heart are lock and bolt, to the end that he
may not moan unto God in the hour of bale.
He (God) gave to Pharaoh hundredfold possessions and riches,
so that he claimed (Divine) might and majesty.
In his whole life that man of evil nature felt no (spiritual)
headache, lest he should moan unto God.
God gave him all the empire of this world, (but) He did not
give him grief and pain and sorrows.
Grief is better than the empire of the world, so that you may
call unto God in secret.
The call of the griefless is from frozen heart*, the call of the
grieving one is from rapture:
(`Tis) to withdraw the voice under the lips, to bear in mind
(one's) origin and beginning;
(`Tis) the voice become pure and sad, (crying) "O God!"
and "O Thou whose help is besought!" and "O Helper!"
(Even) the moan of a dog for His sake is not void of (Divine)
attraction, because every one who desires (Him) is a brigand's
captive* –
As (for example) the dog of the Cave*, which was freed from
(eating) carrion and sat at the table of the (spiritual) emperors:
Until the Resurrection, before the Cave it is drinking in
gnostic wise without (any) pot the water of (Divine) mercy.
Oh, there is many a one in a dog's skin, who hath no name
(and fame), yet is not without that cup (of Divine knowledge)
in secret.
Give thy life for this cup, O son: how may victory be (won)
without (spiritual) warfare and patience.?

-- 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, "congelation."
* I.e. "every seeker of God falls a prey to tribulation, with
which God afflicts him in order that it may be the means of drawing
him towards God."
* See Qur'an, xviii, 17

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1 comment:

iulia said...

My theology teacher read us a poem by Rumi last year, he said that Rumi wrote many love poems, the one that he read to us I give the highest regards to, it was very great, I can't remember it very well, but it ended somewhat like this:
I feel a candel burning,
can't you feel it too?