Don't surrender your lonliness so quickly. Let it cut more deep. Let it ferment and season you As few human or even divine ingredients can. Something missing in my heart tonight Has made my eyes so soft, My voice so tender, My need of God Absolutely clear. HAFIZ
WHO IS THIS EXISTENCE who puts sadness in your heart
who is this soul who sweetens your grief as soon as you crawl
the one who first frightens you with deadly snakes before opening the treasure vault
who changes a monster to an angel a sorrow to happiness
who gives the blind wisdom and inner sight
who changes darkness to light thistles to flowers
who sheds the sins of the sinful like autumn leaves
and puts guilt in the heart of its own enemies
who makes them repent and in silence says amen and whose amen brings inner happiness and soulful delight
who changes bitter thoughts to lightness and joyous zeal
bestows fire and makes you leap with unknown joy
the fire that can make a hero from a desperate heart
who is this existence who is this tell me who
ghazal number 528,
I once spoke to my friend, an old squirrel, about the Sacraments-- he got so excited
and ran into a hollow in his tree and came back holding some acorns, an owl feather, and a ribbon he had found.
And I just smiled and said, "Yes, dear, you understand:
everything imparts His Grace."
Sir Francis of Assisi
My work is loving the world. Here the sunflowers, there the hummingbird— equal seekers of sweetness. Here the quickening yeast; there the blue plums. Here the clam deep in the speckled sand.
Are my boots old? Is my coat torn? Am I no longer young, and still not half-perfect? Let me keep my mind on what matters, which is my work,
which is mostly standing still and learning to be astonished. The phoebe, the delphinium. The sheep in the pasture, and the pasture. Which is mostly rejoicing, since all the ingredients are here,
which is gratitude, to be given a mind and a heart and these body-clothes, a mouth with which to give shouts of joy to the moth and the wren, to the sleepy dug-up clam, telling them all, over and over, how it is that we live forever.
The Guest House
This being human is a guest house. Every morning a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meanness, some momentary awareness comes as an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain them all! Even if they are a crowd of sorrows, who violently sweep your house empty of its furniture, still, treat each guest honorably. He may be clearing you out for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice. meet them at the door laughing and invite them in.
Be grateful for whatever comes. because each has been sent as a guide from beyond.
--- Jelaluddin Rumi, translation by Coleman Barks
The sun once glimpsed God's true nature And has never been the same.
Thus that radiant sphere Constantly pours its energy Upon this earth As does He from behind The veil.
With a wonderful God like that Why isn't everyone a screaming drunk?
Hafiz's guess is this:
Any thought that you are better or less Than another
Quickly Breaks the wine Glass.
The GIFT Poems By HAFIZ The Great Sufi Master Translations By Danile Ladinsky
The nightengale spoke to the rose:
“Don’t look down on my passion for you,
for while hovering around this garden, I have seen
many like you blossom and die.”
The rose, smiling, replied:
“This truth does not bring me to tears,
but what a way for a lover to speak!”
From now until time’s end,
You will never know the perfume of love
Until you have swept dust from the
Doorstep of the tavern of ecstasy
With your forhead.
If you want to taste the red wine from
A cup encrusted with jewels,
Expect to pierce many pearls
With the hair of your eyebrows
Before you have a sip.
Yesterday at dawn
I encountered the garden of Identity
The morning breeze wafted a blessing
Across the hair of a hyacinth,
“Where,” I cried in ecstasy, “is the cup that
satisfies all the thirst in the world?”
A voice replied,
“Poor man, you’d have better stayed in bed
than tempt fate with such questions.”
Love’s talk doesn’t touch the tongue—
Stop interrogating me!”
With his own tears, Hafiz has poured
Both wisdom and patience on the sea.
Love’s pain made any cover-up
Or delay impossible.
13th century Sufi mystic
A Golden Compass
Forget every idea of right and wrong
Any classroom ever taught you
An empty heart, a tormented mind,
Unkindness, jealousy and fear
Are always the testimony
You have been completely fooled!
Turn your back on those
Who would imprison your wondrous spirit
With deceit and lies.
Come, join the honest company
Of the King's beggars--
Those gamblers, scoundrels and divine clowns
And those astonishing fair courtesans
Who need Divine Love every night.
Come, join the courageous
Who have no choice
But to bet their entire world
Indeed, God is Real.
I will lead you into the Circle
Of the Beloved's cunning thieves,
Those playful royal rogues--
The ones you can trust for true guidance--
Who can aid you
In this Blessed Calamity of life.
Look at the Perfect One
At the Circle's Center:
He Spins and Whirls like a Golden Compass,
Beyond all that is Rational,
To show this dear world
Everything in Existence
Does point to God.
I Heard God Laughing
Renderings of Hafiz
By Daniel Ladinsky
THE TIME HAS COME
to break all my promises
tear apart all chains
and cast away all advice
disassemble the heavens
link by link
and break at once
all lovers' ties
with the sword of death
put cotton inside
both my ears
and close them to
all words of wisdom
crash the door and
enter the chamber
where all sweet
things are hidden
how long can i
beg and bargain
for the things of this world
while love is waiting
how long before
i can rise beyond
how i am and
what i am
RUMI, ghazal number 1591
HOW LONG WILL YOU HIDE your beautiful festive smile
teach your laughter to a flower manifest an eternity
why do you think the door to the sky is closed on your face
it allures and invites your magical touch to open and arrive
an entire caravan is waiting in ecstasy for your coming and leading
come on my friend use your talisman and harness all their souls
today is the day to unite with your longing beloved wait no more for an unknown tomorrow
a tambourine is in a corner begging your playing hands a flute is sitting dormant begging your happy lips
RUMI, ghazal number 253, translated April 13, 1992, by Nader Khalili.
What is the difference Between your experience of Existence And that of a saint?
The saint knows That the spiritual path Is a sublime chess game with God
And that the Beloved Has just made such a Fantastic Move That the saint is now continually Tripping over Joy And bursting out in Laughter And saying, "I Surrender!"
Whereas, my dear, I am afraid you still think
You have a thousand serious moves.
The Guest House
"This being human is a guest house. Every morning a new arrival. A joy, a depression, a meanness, Some momentary awareness comes As an unexpected visitor. Welcome and entertain them all! Even if they're a crowd of sorrows, Who violently sweep your house Empty of its furniture, Still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out For some new delight. The dark thought, the shame, the malice, Meet them at the door laughing, And invite them in. Be grateful for whoever comes, Because each has been sent As a guide from beyond."
'And when he sees me in all and sees all in me, Then I never leave him and he never leaves me. And he, who in this oneness of love Loves me in whatever he sees, Wherever this man may live, In truth, he lives in me...'
Bhagavad Gita, VI:30,31
Little by little God takes beauty away. Little by little life's luster decays. Listen to the passage, "To whom We grant a long life, those We cause to decline." Seek the essence and not the structure. The beauty of heart shall forever abide, for it is enriched with the water of life.
I AM the minstrel of eternal love and will play the song of happiness
when my soul hears music and changes to softness i'll break open the wine jar's seal
i am in love with the temple of fire because i was born as the prophet named Khalili Abraham
i am in love with soul and wisdom i am the enemy of false images
the spring is arriving it is high time for action for the sun and Aries to get together
my blood is boiling my heart is on fire and the winter snow is melting away from my body
someone's love is knocking me out and pulling me after itself very forcefully
though i am in this hell and fire i'm filled with honey and nectar
though i am condemned to take this journey i'm filled with the sweetness of going home
now the time has come my sweetheart kindly express what my tongue can never describe
COULD YOU EMBRACE THAT
I said to God, "Let me love you." And He replied, "Which part?"
"All of you, all of you," I said.
"Dear", God spoke, "you are as a mouse wanting to impregnate a tiger who is not even in heat. It is a feat way beyond your courage and strength.
You would run from me if I removed my mask."
I said to God again,
"Beloved I need to love you--every aspect, every pore."
And this time God said,
"There is a hideous blemish on my body, though it is such an infinitesimal part of my Being-- could you kiss that if it were revealed?"
"I will try, Lord, I will try."
And then God said,
"That blemish is all the hatred and cruelty in this world."
St. Thomas Aquinas
RUMI - 945 - poem
A VOICE OUT OF THIS WORLD calls on our souls not to wait any more get ready to move to the original home
your real home your real birth place is up here with the heavens let your soul take a flight like a happy phoenix
you've been tied up your feet in the mud your body roped to a log break loose your ties get ready for the final flight
make your last journey from this strange world soar for the heights where there is no more separation of you and your home
God has created your wings not to be dormant as long as you are alive you must try more and more to use your wings to show you're alive
these wings of yours are filled with quests and hopes if they are not used they will wither away they will soon decay
you may not like what i'm going to tell you you are stuck now you must seek nothing but the source
God is the tree in the forest that
allows itself to die and will not defend itself in front of those with the ax, not wanting to cause them
And God is the Earth that will allow Herself to be deforemed by man’s tools, but She cries, yes, God cries,
but only in front of Her closest ones.
And a beautiful animal is being beaten to death, but nothing can make God break His silence to the masses and say,
“Stop, please stop, why are you doing this
How humble is god?
SHOW ME YOUR FACE i crave flowers and gardens
open your lips i crave the taste of honey
come out from behind the clouds i desire a sunny face
your voice echoed saying "leave me alone" i wish to hear your voice again saying "leave me alone"
i swear this city without you is a prison i am dying to get out to roam in deserts and mountains
i am tired of flimsy friends and submissive companions i die to walk with the brave
i am blue hearing nagging voices and meek cries i desire loud music drunken parties and wild dance
one hand holding a cup of wine one hand caressing your hair then dancing in orbital circle that is what i yearn for
i can sing better than any nightingale but because of this city's freaks i seal my lips while my heart weeps
yesterday the wisest man holding a lit lantern in daylight was searching around town saying
i am tired of all these beasts and brutes i seek a true human
we have all looked for one but no one could be found they said
yes he replied but my search is for the one who cannot be found
--Rumi In the morning
When I began to wake,
It happened again--
That You, Beloved,
Had stood over me all night
That as soon as I began to stir
You put Your lips on my forehead
And lit a Holy Lamp
Inside my Heart.
I Heard God Laughing
Renderings of Hafiz
by Daniel Ladinsky
There is a Beautiful Creature Living in a hole you have dug.
So at night I set fruit and grains And little pots of wine and milk Beside your soft earthen mounds,
And I often sing.
But still, my dear, You do not come out.
I have fallen in love with Someone Who hides inside you.
We should talk about this problem--
Otherwise, I will never leave you alone.
I Heard God Laughing Renderings of Hafiz by Daniel Ladinsky
Don't be blurry-eyed, See me clearly- See my beauty without the old eyes of delusion.
Beware! Beware! Don't mistake me for this human form. The soul is not obscured by forms. Even if it were wrapped in a hundred folds of felt the rays of the soul's light would still shine through.
Beat the drum, Follow the minstrels of the city. It's a day of renewal when every young man walks boldly on the path of love.
Had everyone sought God Instead of crumbs and copper coins T'hey would not be sitting on the edge of the moat in darkness and regret.
What kind of gossip-house have you opened in our city? Close your lips and shine on the world like loving sunlight.
Shine like the Sun of Tabriz rising in the East. Shine like the star of victory. Shine like the whole universe is yours!
I would bathe in That:
Lying in communal stillness. Breathing the peaceful atmosphere of our Beloved
Sharing the secret of That Holy Silent Fragrance.
Dance when you're broken open.
Dance when you've torn the bandage off.
Dance in the middle of fighting.
Dance in your blood.
Dance when you're perfectly free.
Struck, the dancer hears a tambourine inside her,
like a wave that crests into foam at the very top,
Maybe you don't hear that tambourine,
or the tree leaves clapping time.
Close the ears on your head,
that listen mostly to lies and cynical jokes.
There are other things to see, and hear.
A brilliant city inside your soul!
You Were Brave in that Holy War
You have done well In the contest of madness.
You were brave in that holy war.
You have all the honorable wounds Of one who has tried to find love Where the Beautiful Bird Does not drink.
May I speak to you Like we are close And locked away together?
Once I found a stray kitten And I used to soak my fingers In warm milk;
It came to think I was five mothers On one hand.
Wayfarer, Why not rest your tired body? Lean back and close your eyes.
Come morning I will kneel by your side and feed you. I will so gently Spread open your mouth And let you taste something of my Sacred mind and life.
Surely There is something wrong With your ideas of God
O, surely there is something wrong With your ideas of God