Friday, September 4, 2015

Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Rumi: "A Community of the Spirit"

There is a community of the spirit.
Join it, and feel the delight
of walking in the noisy street
and being the noise.

Drink all your passion,
and be a disgrace.

Close both eyes
to see with the other eye.

Open your hands,
if you want to be held.

Sit down in this circle.

Quit acting like a wolf, and feel
the shepherd's love filling you.

At night, your beloved wanders.
Don't accept consolations.

Close your mouth against food.
Taste the lover's mouth in yours.

You moan, "She left me." "He left me."
Twenty more will come.

Be empty of worrying.
Think of who created thought!

Why do you stay in prison
when the door is so wide open?

Move outside the tangle of fear-thinking.
Live in silence.

Flow down and down in always
widening rings of being.

"A Community of the Spirit" by Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Rumi. Text as published in The Essential Rumi, translated from the original Farsi by Coleman Barks with John Moyne (HarperCollins Publishers, 1995). An online version of the original Farsi text couldn't be located.

Art credit: "Metal bar door and cell in a prison," photograph by


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