Select excerpts from some of my favorite Rumi poems.
“Have the aspiration of a falcon
And the pride of a leopard.
At the time of the hunt be graceful,
And be victorious at the times of war.
Don’t get too involved
With the nightingale and the peacock.
One is all words and the other all colors.”
– Rubaiyat 1078
“Though the tree drinks from hidden roots,
We see the display of its branches.
Whatever the earth took from heaven,
It yields up honestly in spring.”
– Love is a Stranger
“Filled with wonder,
You’ve always looked outside for Him,
And haven’t searched within your own house.”
– The Funny Thing Is…
“O God, help me against this self of mine.”
– Counting Out Gold Coins
This one reminds me of a quote by Kahlil Gibran: “And God said “Love thy enemy”, and I obeyed Him and loved myself.”
“Everyone is so afraid of death,
but the real Sufis just laugh:
Nothing tyrannies their hearts.
What strikes the oyster shell
Doesn’t damage the pearl.”
– The Pearl
“Doesn’t a moment of silence
Restore beauty to the voice?”
– The Darkness
“Water says to the dirty, “Come here.”
The dirty one says, “I am so ashamed.”
Water says, “How will your shame
Be washed away
– Be Washed
“If anybody goes traveling without a guide,
Every two days’ journey
Becomes a journey of a hundred years.”
“Your fear of death in fleeing from it
Is really your fear of yourself.”
– Fear of Yourself
“The interpretation of a sacred text is true
If it stirs you to hope, activity, and awe..”
– Ask the Rose about the Rose
“People have nothing but what they have striven for.”
“Whoever lives sweetly dies bitterly; whoever serves only the body loses the soul.”
– The Tale of the Bedouin and his Wife