Sunday, December 17, 2006

Wedding Night of Rumi

Commemorating Rumi's Wedding Night, the Urs,
the wedding of Jalalu'ddin Rumi with the Beloved

GOD is the Beloved

Tonight take my spirit completely from my body,
That I may no longer have shape and name in the world.
At the moment I am drunk in Thee, give me another cup,
That I may be obliterated from the two worlds in Thee,
And be done with it.
When I have been annihilated through Thee
And become what Thou knowest, then will I take the cup
Of nonexistence and drink it, cup after cup.
When the spirit becomes radiant through Thee,
When the candle lights up, if not consumed by Thee, it is raw.
Give me now the nectar of nonexistence instant by instant.
When I have entered nonexistence, I will not know the house
From its roof. When your nonexistence increases, the spirit will
Prostrate itself to you a hundred times ~ O you, to whose
Nonexistence thousands of existences are slave,
Give me celestial wine, measure by measure.
Deliver me from my own existence.
Nectar is Thy special grace, intellect Thy general grace.
Send up waves from nonexistence to wash me away.
How long will I pace the ocean's shore in fear?
The snare of my king Shamsu'ddin is catching prey in
Tabriz, but I have no fear of the snare, for I am within it.

~ Ghazal 1716

Adapted from a translation by William C. Chittick
in his book The Sufi Path of Love
SUNY Press, Albany, 1983

Shebi Arus is Turkish for the Nuptial Night
The Urs is known in Persian as vesal.

GOD is the Beloved

Reunion [with the Beloved]

From this rough and fulsome world
Rumi departed
After ten sweet years with Husamuddin.*
On the day of December 17th*
Came the khalif's passing
After six hundred seventy-two years
Since the Hijra of the Prophet.*
Bereft, the eyes of mankind wept so that day
Lightning struck and burned away the souls' tears.
Quaking overtook the earth at that moment,
And in the heavens wails of mourning arose.
People of Iconium, both young and old,
Wailed, wept and sighed in lamentation.
Nearby villagers, both Greeks and Turks,
Pained at his loss, rent open their collars.
All gave the corpse their final loving respects.
Adherents of every faith proved faithful to him ~
In love with him were people of all nations.

~ SVE 121

from Sultan Valad's Valad nameh
(Persian for The Book of Valad)
also known as Ebteda nameh

Adapted from the translation by Franklin D. Lewis
in his Rumi, Past and Present, East and West
Oneworld Publications, Oxford, 2000


* Sultan Valad ~ Rumi's son, his biographer, and his spiritual successor. Valad formally founded in the Mevlevi Order of Sufis, following his father's teachings.

* Husamuddin ~ a sufi shaykh in his own right, Husamuddin acted as Rumi's scribe and inspiration during the writing of the Mathnawi. The composition of the Mathnawi was suspended when Hosam al-Din's wife died and he was withdrawn in mourning. He also acted as administrator of Rumi's school in Konya.

* December 17th ~ the Gregorian calendar equivalent of the fifth day of Jumadi II. Jumadi II is the sixth month of the Muslim lunar calendar.

* Seventy two and six hundred years since the Hijra of the Prophet ~ Hijra (Arabic), the flight of the Prophet Muhammad from Makka (in September of 622 A.D. per the Christian calendar) to Medina. The Muslim calendar dates from the first day of the hijra.