When through spiritual poverty someone is graced with nonexistence,
like Muhammad, he loses his shadow.
Fanâ'* graced the Prophet who said, "Poverty is my pride."
He became shadowless like the flame of a candle.
When the candle has become entirely flame from head to foot,
a shadow has no way to approach it.
The waxen candle fled from itself and its shadow into radiance
for the sake of the One by whom it was made.
God said, "I molded you for the sake of fanâ'."
It replied, "And so I took refuge in fanâ'."
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Chon fanâsh az faqr pirâyeh shavad
u Mohammad-vâr bi sâyeh shavad
"Faqr fakhri"-râ fanâ* pirâyeh shod
chon zabâneh-ye shama` u bi sâyeh shod
Shama` jomleh shod zabâneh pâ o sar
sâyeh-râ na-bovad beh-gerd-e u gozar
Mum az khvish o ze sâyeh dar gorikht
dar sho`â` az bahr-e U ki shama` rikht
Goft U "Bahr-e fanâyet rikhtam"
goft "Man ham dar fanâ be-gorikhtam"
*Disappearance of the individual self in the being of God.
-- Mathnawi V: 672-676
Version by Camille and Kabir Helminski
"Rumi: Jewels of Remembrance"
Threshold Books, 1996
(Persian transliteration courtesy of Yahyá Monastra)
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