Rumi: Fire rains down




If the soul of a lover spoke, fire would rain down on this world
   smashing this baseless world like atoms
The Sky will burst, time and space torn to shreds
     A passion fills the world, Joy triumphs over death.
The Sun falls short, as the inner light glows 
     The uninitiated can’t know, where the love flows.
No pains or cures, No friends or foes 
      Only the murmurs of the harp as the flute blows.
The Real made this fire to burn the unjust 
     Let the fire burn the heart, and overturn the world


Translation modified from




گر جان عاشق دم زند آتش در این عالم زند        وین عالم بی‌اصل را چون ذره‌ها برهم زند

بشکافد آن دم آسمان نی کون ماند نی مکان         شوری درافتد در جهان، وین سور بر ماتم زند

خورشید افتد در کمی از نور جان آدمی            کم پرس از نامحرمان آن جا که محرم کم زن

نی درد ماند نی دوا نی خصم ماند نی گوا           نی نای ماند نی نوا نی چنگ زیر و بم زند

حق آتشی افروخته تا هر چه ناحق سوخته         آتش بسوزد قلب را بر قلب آن عالم زند


Amazing Ghazal of Rumi

Another great translation from Prof. Nicholas Boylston…


At every breath the song of love
Arrives to us from left and right
We’re setting out to the celestial sphere
Who has the guts to come with us?
The celestial sphere was once our home
We were the friends of angels there
We go again to that same place
O Master, for that is our home
Yet we are higher than the celestial sphere
And more than even angels are
Why should we not pass by them both?
For Majesty is our abode
How great a distance separates
This world of dust from Kawthar’s pool
Although we have come down to here
We fly again. What place is this?
Youthful fortune is our friend
To give our lives our only task
The leader of our caravan
Is this world’s glory, Mustafa
The breeze’s fragrance comes to us
From the curls of his beloved hair
Imagination shimmering
From his face like ‘By the morning bright’
The moon was split by his fair face
Not bearing to set eyes on him
Even the moon achieved this fate
A humble beggar though she is
Now take a look within our heart
At every breath the moon is split
In view now of that that very view
How can your eyes now turn away?
The wave of ‘Am I not [your Lord]’
Has come and smashed the body’s boat
But since the boat is wrecked the turn
Has come of to meet Him once again
We people are like water-fowl
We were born upon the Spirit’s sea
How could it make this place its home
A bird that rose up from that sea?
Nay, we must be in that sea,
All of us are present there
Otherwise from the Spirit’s sea
Why do the waves crash one by one?
The Union of the Encounter
Has come, when beauty shall abide
The time of gifts and kindnesses
A sea that’s pure as purity
The wave of gifts has come to view,
The sea’s roaring now reaches us
Felicity’s dawn has breathed again,
Not dawn. It is the Light of God.
Who is this form that that gives all form?
Who is this king, this lord [this love]?
Who is this ancient intellect?
Why all these veils upon his face?
The remedy of all these veils of face
Is nothing but this ferment here
The fountain of these blessed draughts
Is here within your head and eyes
Your head itself, there’s nothing there
For in fact you have two heads:
One head of dust that’s from this earth
One head that’s from the celestial realm
O how many a pure head there is
That has been cast beneath the dust
So you may know this head right here
Is by that head now kept aloft
Hidden, the head that is the root
The head that’s branch is visible
For once this world is finished up
There is the world that has no end
Take up your flask, O cupbearer
And take your wine now from our cask
For the jug of thought and perception
Is narrower than a narrow way
The Sun of the Truth from Tabriz
Shone out, and thus I said to him,
‘Your light with everything is one,
And yet apart from everything.’


هر نفس آواز عشق می‌رسد از چپ و راست
ما به فلک می‌رویم عزم تماشا که راست
ما به فلک بوده‌ایم یار ملک بوده‌ایم
باز همان جا رویم جمله که آن شهر ماست
خود ز فلک برتریم وز ملک افزونتریم
زین دو چرا نگذریم منزل ما کبریاست
گوهر پاک از کجا عالم خاک از کجا
بر چه فرود آمدیت بار کنید این چه جاست
بخت جوان یار ما دادن جان کار ما
قافله سالار ما فخر جهان مصطفاست
از مه او مه شکافت دیدن او برنتافت
ماه چنان بخت یافت او که کمینه گداست
بوی خوش این نسیم از شکن زلف اوست
شعشعه این خیال زان رخ چون والضحاست
در دل ما درنگر هر دم شق قمر
کز نظر آن نظر چشم تو آن سو چراست
خلق چو مرغابیان زاده ز دریای جان
کی کند این جا مقام مرغ کز آن بحر خاست
بلک به دریا دریم جمله در او حاضریم
ور نه ز دریای دل موج پیاپی چراست
آمد موج الست کشتی قالب ببست
باز چو کشتی شکست نوبت وصل و لقاست


Rumi—It’s a lie!

Wonderful ghazal, wonderfully translated by Prof Nicholas Boylston:


They say, “The king of love has no loyalty.”
It’s a lie.
They say, “The morning does not lead to eve.”
It’s a lie.
They say, “Why do you kill yourselves for the sake of love?
After the annihilation of the body nothing remains.”
It’s a lie.
They say, “Those tears you weep for love are pointless for
Once the eyes are closed there’s no reunion.”
It’s a lie.
They say that once we quit the wheel of time
Our soul will not continue on its way.
It’s a lie.
Thus say the ones not freed from fantasy,
“The stories of the prophets are all fantasy.”
It’s a lie.

Thus say the ones who travel not the righteous path,
“There’s no way the slave will ever reach the Lord.”
It’s a lie.

They say, “The One Who knows the secrets of all hearts
Never speaks the mysteries directly to His slave.”
It’s a lie.

They say, “The secret of the heart is never opened to the slave,
And grace will never lift the servant to the skies.”
It’s a lie.

They say, “The one whose clay was kneaded from the dust
Will never come to know the heavenly folk.”
It’s a lie.

They say that every mote of bad and good was not bestowed
By the Sun of Truth upon the people.
It’s a lie.

Be silent, and if anyone should tell you
There is no way to speak save sound and words…
It’s a lie.




گویند شاه عشق ندارد وفا دروغ

گویند صبح نبود شام تو را دروغ


گویند بهر عشق تو خود را چه می‌کشی

بعد از فنای جسم نباشد بقا دروغ


گویند اشک چشم تو در عشق بیهده‌ست

چون چشم بسته گشت نباشد لقا دروغ


گویند چون ز دور زمانه برون شدیم

زان سو روان نباشد این جان ما دروغ


گویند آن کسان که نرستند از خیال

جمله خیال بد قصص انبیا دروغ


گویند آن کسان که نرفتند راه راست

ره نیست بنده را به جناب خدا دروغ


گویند رازدان دل اسرار و راز غیب

بی‌واسطه نگوید مر بنده را دروغ


گویند بنده را نگشایند راز دل

وز لطف بنده را نبرد بر سما دروغ


گویند آن کسی که بود در سرشت خاک

با اهل آسمان نشود آشنا دروغ


گویند جان پاک از این آشیان خاک

با پر عشق برنپرد بر هوا دروغ


گویند ذره ذره بد و نیک خلق را

آن آفتاب حق نرساند جزا دروغ


خاموش کن ز گفت وگر گویدت کسی

جز حرف و صوت نیست سخن را ادا دروغ

Yunus Emre-The Watermill

Thanks to Serdar Kiliç for introducing me to this poem and translating it:


Why do you groan, O Watermill; For I’ve troubles, I groan
I fell in love with the Lord; For It do I groan
They found me on a mountain; My arms and wings they plucked
Saw me fit for a watermill; For I’ve troubles, I groan
From the mountain they cut my wood; My disparate order they ruined
But an unwearied poet I am; For I’ve troubles, I groan
I am The Troubled Watermill; My water flows, roaring and rumbling
Thus has God commanded; For I’ve troubles, I groan
I am but a mountain’s tree; Neither am I bitter, nor sweet
I am but a pleader to the Lord; For I’ve troubles, I groan
Yunus, whoever comes here will find no joy, will not reach his desire
Nobody stays in this fleeting abode; For I’ve troubles, I groan


See another version and translation on this great website here.



Dolap niçin inilersin; Derdim vardır inilerim,
Ben Mevla’ya aşık oldum; Onun için inilerim,

Beni bir dağda buldular; Kolum kanadım yoldular,
Dolaba layık gördüler; Derdim vardır inilerim,
Dağdan kestiler hezenim; Bozuldu türlü düzenim,
Ben usanmaz bir ozanım; Derdim vardır inilerim,
Benim adım dertli dolap; Suyum akar yalap yalap,
Böyle emreylemiş Çalap; Derdim vardır inilerim,
Ben bir dağın ağacıyım; Ne tatlıyım ne acıyım,
Ben Mevlaya duacıyım; Derdim vardır inilerim,
Yunus bunda gelen gülmez; Kişi muradına ermez,
Bu fanide kimse kalmaz; Derdim vardır inilerim


Baba Zahin Shah Taji

I was recently introduced to this amazing 20th-century Urdu Sufi poet and scholar (he translated and Ibn al-‘Arabi’s Fuṣūṣ al-Hikam and Futūḥāt al-Makkiyya and al-Ḥallāj’s Kitāb al-Ṭawāsīn into Urdu) in these beautiful translations by Amer Latif from this article:

Latif, Amer. “Ẕahīn Shāh Tājī’s (d. 1978) Signs of Beauty (Āyāt-i Jamāl).” Journal of Sufi Studies 10, no. 1-2 (2021): 215-233.


Something Else!

(Har chand kisī shay meyṅ nahīṅ jalwa kunāṅ awr)

Though there is no one else
Manifesting in all that there is;
In everything, those looking
fancy seeing something else.


You are not other, I am not other
“No” is not other, “Yes” is not other;
The Lords of certainty are one thing,
The companions of surmise something else.


Whom else will they seek,
Whom else will they find?
They will leave your door,
But can they go anywhere else?


The people of the garden are busy
Remembering the garden, but friend:
The language of flowers is one thing
The language of thorns something else.


Lower your eyes, bow down,
Ask for vision, ask for a heart;
The eye that sees is one thing,
The heart that sees is something else.


Look at the scattered pieces of the self:
The body is one thing,
the soul something else;
The heart is one thing,
the tongue something else.


With the wood of reason,
Feed the fire of love.
Sit and watch for a while:
The smoke from the blaze is something else.


All the drunks, Zaheen, live in different worlds;
Though the wine is not different,
The wine cup is not different, and
The wine giver is not someone else.





Listen to an even more incredible performance of the poem here


This is It!

(Jō jalwa gāh-i yār hay wōh dil yahī tō hay)

The heart where the friend is manifest, this is it;
The place at which we are, the destination of beauty, this is it.


To not see oneself is the condition for seeing you;
The veil that is the barrier between us, this is it.


Every particle heart-ravishing, each manifestation soul-soothing;
At every step, the thought: “The destination, this is it.”


The one carried away by the slightest of smiles,
That heart, that ocean without a shore, this is it.


Now every gesture of beauty makes me imagine
That the one who stole my heart away, this is it.


My heart speaks to me of what is in your heart,
A mirror face-to-face with a mirror, this is it.


To forget, in your love, both of the worlds,
If there’s a thing worth remembering, this is it.


I do recognize, O friends, the attribute of Zaheen:
The one apart yet mingled with everyone, this is it.




Sana’i and Hafez Bilingual Poems (Molamma’āt)


One of Hafez’s Molamma’āt (mixed Persian and Arabic) ghazals illustrates not only the unique transformation of Arabic prosody in Persian poetry, but also Hafez’s unique gift for copying, transforming, and improving the verses from previous ghazals (in this case a ghazal by the seminal master of the ghazal, Sanā’ī):



Last night a letter arrived unexpectedly from my beloved.
She said: “My heart has seen the pangs of the resurrection in being
parted from you.”
I said: “Does your loving heart have some sign of suffering?”
She said: “Are not the tears in my eye enough of a sign for
She said: “What are you planning?” I said: “A journey.”
She said: “Go in health, happiness and safety?”
I said: “You are not trustworthy.” She said: “Test me!”
[I replied:] ” Whoever tests an experienced person will surely regret it.”
I said: “Farewell! You shall not come and conquer my breast.”
She said: “So you want union with me in secret? No, by grace!”
She said: “Take hold of my tresses!” I said: “Scandal will come”
 She said: “Do you really not know about love and scandal?”



دی ناگه از نگارم اندر رسید نامه
قالت: رای فوادی من هجرک القیامه
گفتم که: عشق و دل را باشد علامتی هم
قالت: دموع عینی لم تکف بالعلامه
گفتا که: می چه سازی گفتم که مر سفر را
قالت: فمر صحیحا بالخیر و السلامه
گفتم: وفا نداری گفتا که: آزمودی
من جرب المجرب حلت به الندامه
گفتم: وداع نایی واندر برم نگیری
قالت: ترید وصلی سرا و لا کرامه
گفتا: بگیر زلفم گفتم: ملامت آید
قالت: الست تدری العشق و الملامه




I tested you a lot, but it did not help me
Whoever tries the experienced will come to regret it


بسيارت آزموذى امّا نبوذ سوذم        من جرّب المجرّب حلّت به الندامة





From my heart’s grief I wrote a letter to my beloved.
For an age, from your absence, I have witnessed the resurrection
I have a hundred signs of separation in my eye
Are not the tears of these eyes of mine for us a sign?
However much I tried, she did not help me
Whoever tries the experienced will regret it
I asked a doctor about the state of my beloved. He said:
Suffering is in nearness to her, health is in distance from her.
I said: Will scandal come if I wander about your alley?.
By God! We have never seen a love without scandal.
Hafiz has come like one seeking a cup even at the price of his sweet soul,
that he might taste from it, a goblet of grace.



از خون دل نوشتم نزدیک دوست نامه
انی رایت دهرا من هجرک القیامه
دارم من از فراقش در دیده صد علامت
لیست دموع عینی هذا لنا العلامه
هر چند کآزمودم از وی نبود سودم
من جرّب المجرّب حلّت به الندامه
پرسیدم از طبیبی احوال دوست گفتا
فی بعدها عذاب فی قربها السلامه
گفتم ملامت آید گر گرد دوست گردم
و الله ما راینا حبا بلا ملامه
حافظ چو طالب آمد جامی به جان شیرین
حتی یذوق منه کاسا من الکرامه

From: François de Blois, “A Bilingual Poem by Ḥāfiẓ,” Oriente Moderno , 1996, Nuova serie, Anno 15 (76), Nr. 2, LA CIVILTÀ TIMURIDE COME FENOMENO INTERNAZIONALE. Volume II (Letteratura — Arte) (1996), pp. 379-384.

Uyghur dutar and poetry-Uchrashqanda

Amazing poem by Abdurehim Ötkür and performance by Abdurehim Heyit


Translation (thanks to Arthur Schechter for help):

At sunrise, I saw the Sultan of my eyes
I said: “Are you the Sultan?” She said: “No, no.”

Her eyes are blazing, her hands are hennaed;
I said: “Are you Venus?” She said: “No, no.”
I said: “What’s your name?” She said: “It is Ayhan.”
I said: “Where’s your home?” She said: “Turfan.”
I said: “[What’s] On your head?” She said: “A sad farewell.”
I said: “Are you in love?” She said: “No, no”.

I said: “It looks like the moon.” She said: “My face?”
I said: “It’s like a star.” She said: “My eye?”
I said: “It blazes fire.” She said: “My word?”
I said: “Are you a volcano?” She said: “No, no.”

I said: “What is furrowed?” She said: “It’s my eyebrow.”
I said: “What is a black wave?” She said: “It’s my hair.”
I said: “What is fifteen?” She said: “It is my age.”
I said: “Are you the beloved?” She said: “No, no.”

I said: “What is the sea?” She said: “It is my heart.”
I said: “What is beautiful? She said: “It is my lip.”
I said: “What is sugar? She said: “It is my tongue.”
I said: “Give my mouth a taste?” She said: “No, no.”

I said: “The chain stops?” She said: “On my neck.”
I said: “Is there death?” She said: “On my way.”
I said: “Shackles?” She said: “On my wrists.”
I said: “Are you afraid?” She said: “No, no.”

I said: “Why aren’t you afraid?” She said: “I have God.”
I said: “Anything else?” She said: “I have my people.”
I said: “No more?” She said: “I have a soul.”
I said: “Are you grateful?” She said: “No, no.”

I said: “What is the request?” She said: “It is my rosy smile.”
I said: “What about war?” She said: “It is my way.”
I said: “What is Ötkür?” She said: “He is my servant/hand.”*
I said: “Will you sell him?” She said: “No, no.”


*The poet’s name Ötkür, means “sharp” so this line means also that the poet’s hand/pen is sharp.


Seher vakti gördüm, gözümün sultanını;
Dedim: “Sultan mısın?” O dedi: “Yok, yok.”
Gözleri ışıltılı, elleri kınalı;
Dedim: “Çolpan mısın?” O dedi: “Yok, yok.”
Dedim: “İsmin nedir?” Dedi: “Ayhan’dır.”
Dedim: “Yurdun neresi?” Dedi: “Turfan’dır.”
Dedim: “Başındaki?” Dedi: “Hicrandır.”
Dedim: “Hayran mısın?” O dedi: “Yok, yok”.
Dedim: “Aya benzer.” Dedi: “Yüzüm mü?”
Dedim: “Yıldız gibi.” Dedi: “Gözüm mü?”
Dedim: “Işık saçar.” Dedi: “Sözüm mü?”
Dedim: “Volkan mısın?” O dedi: “Yok, yok.”
Dedim: “Çatık nedir?” Dedi: “Kaşımdır.”
Dedim: “Dalga nedir?” Dedi: “Saçımdır.”
Dedim: “On beş nedir?” Dedi: “Yaşımdır.”
Dedim: “Canan mısın?” O dedi: “Yok, yok.”
Dedim: “Deniz nedir?” Dedi: “Kalbimdir.”
Dedim: “Güzel nedir? Dedi: “Dudağımdır.”
Dedim: “Şeker nedir? Dedi: “Dilimdir.”
Dedim: “Ver ağzıma?” O dedi: “Yok, yok.”
Dedim: “Zincir durur?” Dedi: “Boynumda.”
Dedim: “Ölüm vardır.” Dedi: “Yolumda.”
Dedim: “Bilezik?” Dedi: “Kolumda.”
Dedim: “Korkar mısın?” O dedi: “Yok, yok.”
Dedim: “Niçin korkmazsın?” Dedi: “Tanrım var.”
Dedim: “Başka?” Dedi: “Halkım var.”
Dedim: “Daha yok mu?” Dedi: “Ruhum var.”
Dedim: “Şükran mısın?” O dedi: “Yok, yok.”
Dedim: “İstek nedir?” Dedi: “Gülümdür.”
Dedim: “Ya mücadele?” Dedi: “Yolumdur.”
Dedim: “Ötkür neyindir?” Dedi: “Kulumdur.”
Dedim: “Satar mısın?” O dedi: “Yok, yok.”

Sähär körgän çeğim közüm sultanini,
Didim sultan musän? U didi yaq-yaq.
Közliri yalqunluq, qolliri xeniliq,
Didim çolpan musän? U didi yaq-yaq.
Didim ismiñ nimä? Didi Ayhandur,
Didim yurtuñ qeyär? Didi Turpandur,
Didim beşindiki? Didi hicrandur,
Didim häyran musän? U didi yaq-yaq.
Didim ayğa oxşar, didi yüzüm mu?
Didim yultuz käbi, didi közüm mu?
Didim yalqun saçar, didi sözüm mu?
Didim volqan musän? U didi yaq-yaq.
Didim qiyaq nädur? Didi qaşimdur,
Didim qunduz nädur? Didi saçumdur,
Didim on beş nädur? Didi yaşimdur,
Didim canan musän? U didi yaq-yaq.
Didim diñiz nädur? Didi qälbimdur,
Didim räna nädur? Didi livimdur,
Didim şekär nädur? Didi tilimdur,
Didim bir ağzimä? U didi yaq-yaq.
Didim zäncir turar, didi boynumda,
Didim ölüm bardur, didi yolumda,
Didim biläzükçu? Didi qolumda,
Didim qorqar musän? U didi yaq-yaq.
Didim niçün qorqmassän? Didi tänrim bar,
Didim yäniçu? Didi xälqim bar,
Didim yänä yoq mu? Didi ruhim bar,
Didim şükran musän? U didi yaq-yaq.
Didim istäk nädur? Didi gülümdur,
Didim çelişmaqqa? Didi yolumdur,
Didim Ötkür nimändur? Didi qulumdur,
Didim satar musän? U didi yaq-yaq…

،سەھەر كۆرگەن چېغىم كۆزۈم سۇلتانىنى
.دېدىم سۇلتانمۇ سەن؟ ئۇ دېدى ياق – ياق
،كۆزلىرى يالقۇنلۇق، قوللىرى خېنىلىق
.دېدىم چولپانمۇ سەن؟ ئۇ دېدى ياق – ياق
،دېدىم ئىسمىڭ نېمە؟ دېدى ئايخاندۇر
،دېدىم يۇرتۇڭ قەيەر؟ دېدى تۇرپاندۇر
.دىدىم باشىڭدىكى؟ دېدى ھىجراندۇر
.دېدىم ھەيرانمۇسەن؟ ئۇ دېدى ياق – ياق
دېدىم ئايغا ئوخشار، دېدى يۈزۈممۇ؟
دېدىم يۇلتۇز كەبى، دېدى كۆزۈممۇ؟
دېدىم يالقۇن ساچار، دېدى سۆزۈممۇ؟
.دېدىم ۋولقانمۇ سەن؟ ئۇ دېدى ياق – ياق
،دېدىم قىياق نەدۇر؟ دېدى قاشىمدۇر
.دېدىم قۇندۇز نەدۇر؟ دېدى ساچىمدۇر
،دېدىم ئون بەش نەدۇر؟ دېدى ياشىمدۇر
.دېدىم جانانمۇ سەن؟ ئۇ دېدى ياق – ياق
،دېدىم دېڭىز نەدۇر؟ دېدى قەلبىمدۇر
.دېدىم رەنا نەدۇر؟ دېدى لېۋىمدۇر
.دېدىم شېكەر نەدۇر؟ دېدى تىلىمدۇر
.دېدىم بىر ئاغزىمە؟ ئۇ دېدى ياق – ياق
،دېدىم زەنجىر تۇرار، دېدى بوينۇمدا
،دېدىم ئۆلۈم باردۇر، دېدى يولۇمدا
،دېدىم بىلەزۈكچۇ؟ دېدى قولۇمدا
.دېدىم قورقارمۇ سەن؟ ئۇ دېدى ياق – ياق
،دېدىم نېچۈن قورقماسسەن؟ دېدى تەڭرىم بار
.دېدىم يەنىچۇ؟ دېدى خەلقىم بار
.دېدىم يەنە يوقمۇ؟ دېدى روھىم بار
.دېدىم شۇكرانمۇ سەن؟ ئۇ دېدى ياق – ياق
،دېدىم ئىستەك نەدۇر؟ دېدى گۈلۈمدۇر
،دېدىم چېلىشماققا؟ دېدى يولۇمدۇر
،دېدىم ئۆتكۈر نېمەڭدۇر؟ دېدى قولۇمدۇر
…دېدىم ساتارمۇ سەن؟ ئۇ دېدى ياق – ياق

‘Eid al-Adha




When love sacrifices me, then that day will be my ‘Eid

Were it not my ‘Eid, I’d not be that real man, but a whore




عشق چو قربان کندم عید من آن روز بود

ور نبود عید من آن مرد نیم بلک غرم




If you appear, then no one else exists

and if you are not hidden, then you are unique

Whoever wants to see other than you outwardly

or inwardly, to me, is distant

O spendour of everything! If we were to witness you one day

That would be, the most joyous day of all time

Each year, for people, there are two ‘Eids

But for us, every moment with you is ‘Eid




لَيسَ لِلغيرِ إِن ظَهَرتَ وُجودُ
وَإِذا ما بَطنتَ أَنتَ فَريدُ
كُلُّ مَن رامَ أَن يَرى ظاهِراً غَي
رَكَ أَو باطِناً فَعِندي بَعيدُ
يا سَنا الكُلِّ إِن شَهِدناكَ يَوماً
فَهوَ يَومٌ مِنَ الزَّمانِ سَعيدُ
إِنَّ لِلنّاسِ كُلَّ عامٍ لَعيدَي
نِ وَكُلُّ وَقتٍ لَنا بِكَ عيدُ

Loving you

Minnie Ripperton


Lovin’ you is easy, ’cause you’re beautiful
Makin’ love with you is all I wanna do
Lovin’ you is more than just a dream come true
And everything that I do is out of lovin’ you
La-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la-la
La-la-la-la-la, la-la, la-la-la
Dodin-dodin-do-do, ah-ah-ah-ah-ah
No one else can make me feel the colors that you bring
Stay with me while we grow old, and we will live each day in springtime
‘Cause lovin’ you has made my life so beautiful
And every day of my life is filled with lovin’ you
Lovin’ you, I see your soul come shinin’ through
And every time that we-, ooh, I’m more in love with you
La-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la-la
La-la-la-la-la, la-la, la-la-la
Dodin-dodin-do-do, ah-ah-ah-ah-ah
No one else can make me feel the colors that you bring
Stay with me while we grow old, and we will live each day in springtime
‘Cause lovin’ you is easy, ’cause you’re beautiful
And every day of my life is filled with lovin’ you
Lovin’ you, I see your soul come shinin’ through
And every time that we-, ooh, I’m more in love with you
La-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la-la
La-la-la-la-la, la-la, la-la-la
Dodin-dodin-do-do, ah-ah-ah-ah-ah
Na, ooh-ooh
La-la-la-la-la, la-la, la-la-la
Dodin-dodin-do-do, bi-do-bi-do-bni-do
My, my-a, my, my-a
My, my-a, my-a, my-a
La, la, la-la, bi-do-bi-do-ooh-do-do

Seyyed Hossein Nasr


I Am So Drunk From Thy Love That I No Longer Know Myself,
I Am In Wonderment In This Drunkenness And Yet Remain Silent.
Being Away From Thee Is Not Possible, Nor Is Thy Embrace Full Of Love,
Yet Bewildered Am I From The Perfume Of Thy Black Hair.
Unveil Thy Face, O Saki, For My Soul Is In Quest.
Give A Gulp Of That Wine That Will Remove My Breath And Mind.
In This Monastery Full Of Affliction I Have Accepted Much Suffering
With This Thought—That One Day I Would Drink The Wine Of Gnosis.
In This World I Have Thee, I Have Thee Alone.
Union With Thee Is The Goal Of My Life; I Continue To Strive On This Path.

The Fervor For Meeting Thee Burns Within Me Like Fire,
I Continue To Burn In This Fire Though I Am Annihilated And Silent.



زعشقت آنچنان مستم که دیگر خود نمی دانم

در این مستی بوَم حیران و با این حال خاموشم


نه دوریت بوَد  ممکن نه آغوش پر از مهرت

ز بوی زلف مشکینت ولی همواره مدهوشم


رُخت بگشای ای ساقی که جانم در طلب باشد

بده یک جرعه زان باده برَد هم دم وَ هم هوشم


در این دیر پر از محنت بسی سختی پذیرفتم

به این اندیشه تا روزی شراب معرفت نوشم


در این عالم ترا دارم تو را دارم به تنهایی

وصالت غایت عمرم در این ره همچنان کوشم


بوَد شور لقائت همچو آتش در درون من

در این آتش همی سوزم ولی فانی و خاموشم

The qibla of love

Qu’ran 2:144

We have seen the turning of thy face to heaven. And now verily We shall turn you toward a qibla [direction of prayer] which is dear to thee. So turn thy face toward the Inviolable Place of Worship, and ye, wheresoever ye may be, turn your faces toward it. Lo! Those who have received the Scripture know that is the Truth from their Lord. And Allah is not unaware of what they do.

Qur’an 10:87

We revealed to Moses and his brother, “Appoint houses for your people in Egypt and make your houses a qibla [direction of prayer], and establish worship. And give good news to the believers.”


Qur’an 2:155

To god belong the East and West, and wheresoever you turn, there is the face of God.


“Do you think my qibla is only here [before me]? By God, your bowing and prostrating are not concealed from me; I can see you even though you are behind my back.”




Since the qibla of the soul has been hidden

everyone has turned his face to a different corner

(Masnavi 5:328-337)


قبله‌ی جان را چو پنهان کرده‌اند
هر کسی رو جانبی آورده‌اند



The Kaaba of Gabriel and the celestial spirits is a Lote-tree;
the glutton’s qibla is a cloth laden with dishes of food.
The qibla of the Knower is the light of union with God;
the qibla of the philosopher’s mind is fantasy.
The qibla of the ascetic is God, the Gracious;
the qibla of the flatterer is a purse of gold.
The qibla of the spiritual is patience and long-suffering;
the qiblah of form-worshippers is an image of stone.
The qibla of those who live in the inward is the Bounteous One;
the qibla of those who worship the outward is a woman’s face.
(Masanvi 6, 1896–1900)



کعبه‌ی جبریل و جانها سدره‌ای ** قبله‌ی عبدالبطون شد سفره‌ای
قبله‌ی عارف بود نور وصال  ** قبله‌ی عقل مفلسف شد خیال
قبله‌ی زاهد بود یزدان بر ** قبله‌ی مطمع بود همیان زر
قبله‌ی معنی‌وران صبر و درنگ ** قبله‌ی صورت‌پرستان نقش سنگ
قبله‌ی باطن‌نشینان ذوالمنن ** قبله‌ی ظاهرپرستان روی زن


By virtue of that Light the calf becomes a qibla of grace;
without that Light the qibla becomes infidelity and an idol.
The licence that comes from self-will is error;
the licence that comes from God is perfection.
In that quarter where the illimitable Light has shone,
infidelity has become faith and the Devil has attained unto Islam.


عجل با آن نور شد قبله‌ی کرم ** قبله بی آن نور شد کفر و صنم
هست اباحت کز هوای آمد ضلال ** هست اباحت کز خدا آمد کمال
کفر ایمان گشت و دیو اسلام یافت ** آن طرف کان نور بی‌اندازه تافت

(Masnavi 6: 2073)



Within the Ka‘ba the rule of the qibla does not exist:
what matter if the diver has no snow-shoes?
Do not seek guidance from the drunken:
why dost thou order those whose garments are rent in pieces to mend them?
The religion of Love is apart from all religions:
for lovers, the (only) religion and sect is God.



در درون کعبه رسم قبله نیست ** چه غم ار غواص را پاچیله نیست‏
تو ز سر مستان قلاووزی مجو ** جامه چاکان را چه فرمایی رفو
تو ز سر مستان قلاووزی مجو ** جامه چاکان را چه فرمایی رفو
ملت عشق از همه دینها جداست ** عاشقان را ملت و مذهب خداست‏

(Masnavi 6:1768-1770)



Since the Hand of God has made the Qibla manifest,
henceforth deem searching to be disallowed.
Hark, avert your face and head from searching,
now that the Destination and Dwelling-place has come into view.
If you forget this Qibla for one moment, you will become in thrall to every worthless qibla (object of desire).
When you show ingratitude to him that gives you discernment, the thought that recognises the Qibla will dart away from you.



قبله را چون کرد دست حق عیان ** پس تحری بعد ازین مردود دان
هین بگردان از تحری رو و سر ** که پدید آمد معاد و مستقر
ک زمان زین قبله گر ذاهل شوی ** سخره‌ی هر قبله‌ی باطل شوی
چون شوی تمییزده را ناسپاس ** بجهد از تو خطرت قبله‌شناس




Amīr Khusrow

Every sect has a faith, a  Qibla to which they turn,
I have turned my face towards the crooked cap (of Nizamudin Aulia)
The whole world worships something or the other,
Some look for God in Mecca, while some go to Kashi (Banaras),
So why can’t I, Oh wise people, fall into my beloved’s feet?
Every sect has a faith, a Qibla.



هر قوم راست راهي، ديني و قبله گاهي

من قبله راست كرديم ،‌بر سمت كج كلاهي


Har qaum raast raahay, deen-e wa qibla gaahay,
Mun qibla raast kardam, bar samt kajkulaahay.
Sansaar har ko poojay, kul ko jagat sarahay,
Makkay mein koyi dhoondhay, Kaashi ko koi jaaye,
Guyyian main apnay pi kay payyan padun na kaahay.
Har qaum raast raahay, deen-e wa qibla gaahay…


Mirza Ghālib

The one to whom I bow is beyond senses’ boundaries

The qiblah itself’s a pointer for those who can see



ہے پرے سرحدِ ادراک سے اپنا مسجود

قبلے کو اہلِ نظر قبلہ نما کہتے ہیں




Ibn ‘Arabi:

Contemplate the house: for sanctified hearts,
its lights shine openly
They look at it through God, without a veil,
and its august and sublime secret appears to them.


and famously:

My heart has become receptive to every form
A meadow for gazelles, and a cloister for the monks
A house for the idols, and the pilgrim’s Ka’aba
The tablets of the Torah, pages of the Qur’an
My religion is love’s own and wheresoever turn
Her caravan, that love is my religion and my faith
We have an example in Bishr, lover of Hind and her sister,
And Qays and Layla, and Mayya and Ghaylan*


لقدْ صارَ قلبي قابلاً كلَّ صورة ٍ                فمَرْعًى لغِزْلاَنٍ وديرٌ لرُهْبانِ
وبَيْتٌ لأوثانٍ وكعبة ُ طائفٍ،                 وألواحُ توراة ٍ ومصحفُ قرآنِ
أدينُ بدينِ الحبِّ أنَّى توجَّهتْ                   رَكائِبُهُ فالحُبُّ ديني وإيماني
لنا أُسْوَة ٌ في بِشْرِ هندٍ وأُخْتِهَا               وقيسٍ وليلى ، ثمَّ مي وغيلانِ


Also see:

P | A | Chodkiewicz: The Paradox of the Ka‘ba


Charles Long, Siginifcations:

“”For my purposes, religion will mean orientation—orientation in the ultimate sense, that is, how one comes to terms with the ultimate significance of one’s place in the world.”

David Foster Wallace, “This is Water”:

“Everybody worships. The only choice we get is what to worship. And the compelling reason for maybe choosing some sort of god or spiritual-type thing to worship–be it JC or Allah, be it YHWH or the Wiccan Mother Goddess, or the Four Noble Truths, or some inviolable set of ethical principles–is that pretty much anything else you worship will eat you alive. If you worship money and things, if they are where you tap real meaning in life, then you will never have enough, never feel you have enough. It’s the truth. Worship your body and beauty and sexual allure and you will always feel ugly. And when time and age start showing, you will die a million deaths before they finally grieve you. On one level, we all know this stuff already. It’s been codified as myths, proverbs, clichés, epigrams, parables; the skeleton of every great story. The whole trick is keeping the truth up front in daily consciousness.

Worship power, you will end up feeling weak and afraid, and you will need ever more power over others to numb you to your own fear. Worship your intellect, being seen as smart, you will end up feeling stupid, a fraud, always on the verge of being found out. But the insidious thing about these forms of worship is not that they’re evil or sinful, it’s that they’re unconscious. They are default settings.

They’re the kind of worship you just gradually slip into, day after day, getting more and more selective about what you see and how you measure value without ever being fully aware that that’s what you’re doing.

And the so-called real world will not discourage you from operating on your default settings, because the so-called real world of men and money and power hums merrily along in a pool of fear and anger and frustration and craving and worship of self. Our own present culture has harnessed these forces in ways that have yielded extraordinary wealth and comfort and personal freedom. The freedom all to be lords of our tiny skull-sized kingdoms, alone at the centre of all creation. This kind of freedom has much to recommend it. But of course there are all different kinds of freedom, and the kind that is most precious you will not hear much talk about much in the great outside world of wanting and achieving…. The really important kind of freedom involves attention and awareness and discipline, and being able truly to care about other people and to sacrifice for them over and over in myriad petty, unsexy ways every day.

That is real freedom. That is being educated, and understanding how to think. The alternative is unconsciousness, the default setting, the rat race, the constant gnawing sense of having had, and lost, some infinite thing.”

-David Foster Wallace