Date: Friday, October 27 @ 22:21:14 UTC
Topic: Great Sages


rumiHigherself.jpg
Mawlānā Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Rūmī (Persian: مولانا جلال الدین محمد رومی, Turkish: Mevlânâ Celâleddin Mehmed Rumi) , also known as Mawlānā Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Balkhī (Persian: محمد بلخى), but known to the English-speaking world simply as Rum, (1207 — 1273 CE) was a 13th century Persian (Tājīk) poet, jurist, and theologian. His name literally means Majesty of Religion, Jalal means majesty and Din means religion.

Rumi was born in Balkh (then a city of Greater Khorasan one of the eastern territories of ancient Persia, now part of Afghanistan) and died in Konya (in present-day Turkey). His birthplace and native tongue indicate a Persian heritage. He also wrote his poetry in Persian and his works are widely read in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan, and Turkey. He lived most of his life and produced his works under the Seljuk Empire.

Rumi's importance is considered to transcend national and ethnic borders. He has had a significant influence on both Persian and Turkish literature throughout the centuries. His poems have been translated into many of the world's languages and have appeared in various formats.

After Rumi's death, his followers founded the Mevlevi Order, better known as the "Whirling Dervishes", who believe in performing their worship in the form of dance and music ceremony called the sema.

Rumi's life is described in Shams ud-Din Ahmad Aflāki's "Manākib ul-Ārifīn" (written between 1318 and 1353). He is described as a descendant of the caliph Abu Bakr, and of the Khwārizm-Shāh Sultān Alā ud-Dīn bin Takash (1199–1220), whose only daughter, Mālika-e Jahān, had allegedly been married to Rumi's grandfather. However, both claims are rejected by modern scholars.



When the Mongols invaded Central Asia sometime between 1215 and 1220, his father (Bahauddin Walad, a theologian, jurist and a mystic of uncertain lineage) set out westwards with his whole family and a group of disciples. On the road to Anatolia, Rumi encountered one of the most famous mystic Persian poets, Attar, in the city of Nishapur, located in what is now the Iranian province of Khorāsān. Attar immediately recognized Rumi's spiritual eminence. He saw the father walking ahead of the son and said, "Here comes a sea followed by an ocean." He gave the boy his Asrarnama, a book about the entanglement of the soul in the material world. This meeting had a deep impact on the eighteen-year-old Rumi's thoughts, which later on became the inspiration for Rumi's works.

From Nishapur, Walad and his entourage set out for Baghdad, meeting many of the scholars and Sufis of the city. From there they went to the Hejaz and performed the pilgrimage at Mecca. It was after this journey that most likely as a result of the invitation of Allāh ud-Dīn Key-Qobād, ruler of Anatolia, Bahauddin came to Asia Minor and finally settled in Konya in Anatolia within the westernmost territories of Seljuk Empire.

Bahauddin became the head of a madrassa (religious school) and when he died Rumi succeeded him at the age of twenty-five. One of Bahauddin's students, Syed Burhanuddin Mahaqqiq, continued to train Rumi in the religious and mystical doctrines of Rumi's father. For nine years, Rumi practiced Sufism as a disciple of Burhanuddin until the latter died in 1240-1. During this period Rumi also travelled to Damascus and is said to have spent four years there.

It was his meeting with the dervish Shams Tabrizi in the late fall of 1244 that changed his life completely. Shams had traveled throughout the Middle East searching and praying for someone who could "endure my company". A voice came, "What will you give in return?" "My head!" "The one you seek is Jelaluddin of Konya." On the night of December 5, 1248, as Rumi and Shams were talking, Shams was called to the back door. He went out, never to be seen again. It is believed that he was murdered with the connivance of Rumi's son, Allaedin; if so, Shams indeed gave his head for the privilege of mystical friendship.

Rumi's love and his bereavement for the death of Shams found their expression in an outpouring of music, dance and lyric poems, Divani Shamsi Tabrizi. He himself went out searching for Shams and journeyed again to Damascus. There, he realized:

Why should I seek? I am the same as
He. His essence speaks through me.
I have been looking for myself!


For more than ten years after meeting Shams, Mevlana had been spontaneously composing ghazals, and these had been collected in the Divan-i Kabir. Rumi found another companion in Saladin Zarkub, the goldsmith. After Saladin's death, Rumi's scribe and favorite student Husam Chelebi assumed the role. One day, the two of them were wandering through the Meram vineyards outside of Konya when Husam described an idea he had to Rumi: "If you were to write a book like the Ilahiname of Sanai or the Mantik'ut-Tayr'i of Attar it would become the companion of many troubadours. They would fill their hearts from your work and compose music to accompany it."

Rumi smiled and took out a piece of paper on which were written the opening eighteen lines of his Mathnawi, beginning with:

Listen to the reed and the tale it tells,
How it sings of separation...

Husam implored Rumi to write more. Rumi spent the next twelve years of his life in Anatolia dictating the six volumes of this masterwork, the Mathnawi to Husam. In December 1273, Rumi fell ill; he predicted his own death and composed the well-known ghazal, which begins with the verse:

How doest thou know what sort of king I have within me as companion?
Do not cast thy glance upon my golden face, for I have iron legs.

He died on December 17, 1273 in Konya; Rumi was laid to rest beside his father, and a splendid shrine, the Yeşil Türbe "Green Tomb", was erected over his tomb. His epitaph reads:

"When we are dead, seek not our tomb in the earth, but find it in the hearts of men." 

Teaching of Rumi

The general theme of his thoughts, like that of the other mystic and Sufi poets of the Persian literature, is essentially about the concept of Tawheed (unity) and union with his beloved (the primal root) from which/whom he has been cut and fallen aloof, and his longing and desire for reunity.

The "Mathnawi" weaves fables, scenes from everyday life, Qur’anic revelations and exegesis, and metaphysics, into a vast and intricate tapestry. Rumi is considered an example of "insani kamil" — the perfected or completed human being. In the East, it is said of him, that he was, "not a prophet — but surely, he has brought a scripture". Rumi believed passionately in the use of music, poetry and dancing as a path for reaching God. For Rumi, music helped devotees to focus their whole being on the divine, and to do this so intensely that the soul was both destroyed and resurrected. It was from these ideas that the practice of Whirling Dervishes developed into a ritual form. He founded the order of the Mevlevi, the "whirling" dervishes, and created the "Sema", their "turning", sacred dance. In the Mevlevi tradition, Sema represents a mystical journey of spiritual ascent through mind and love to "Perfect." In this journey the seeker symbolically turns towards the truth, grows through love, abandons the ego, finds the truth, and arrives at the "Perfect"; then returns from this spiritual journey with greater maturity, so as to love and to be of service to the whole of creation without discrimination against beliefs, races, classes and nations.

According to Shahram Shiva, one reason for Rumi's popularity is that "Rumi is able to verbalize the highly personal and often confusing world of personal/spiritual growth and mysticism in a very forward and direct fashion. He does not offend anyone, and he includes everyone. The world of Rumi is neither exclusively the world of a Sufi, nor the world of a Hindu, nor a Jew, nor a Christian; it is the highest state of a human being — a fully evolved human. A complete human is not bound by cultural limitations; he touches every one of us. Today Rumi's poems can be heard in churches, synagogues, Zen monasteries, as well as in the downtown New York art/performance/music scene." According to Professor Majid M. Naini, one of the foremost international Rumi scholars who travels the world trying to spread Rumi's universal message of love, Rumi's life and transformation provide true testimony and proof that people of all religions and backgrounds can live together in peace and harmony throughout the world. At Rumi’s grand funeral procession Jews, Christians, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, and Sufis cried and mourned in a manner that one would have thought that Rumi belonged to each one of them. Rumi’s visions, words, and life teach us how to reach inner peace and happiness so we can finally stop the continual stream of hostility and hatred and achieve true global peace and harmony.

In other beautiful verses in Mathnavi, Rumi describes in detail the universal message of love. For example, he states:

Love’s nationality is separate from all other religions,
The lover’s religion and nationality is the Beloved (God).
The lover’s cause is separate from all other causes
Love is the astrolabe of God’s mysteries.


Source:wikipedia



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