At the hour of the morning-drink


  Yellow tulips and black tulips from Istanbul Tulip Festival (Istanbul, Pentax K10D)

Yellow tulips and black tulips from Istanbul Tulip Festival (Istanbul, Pentax K10D)

At the hour of the morning-drink

At the hour of the morning-drink a beloved said to her lover
by way of trial, “O such-and-such son of such-and-such,
I wonder, do you love me or yourself more? Tell the truth,
O man of sorrows.”
He replied, “I have become so naughted in thee that I am
full of thee from head to foot.
Of my existence there is nothing (left) in me but the name:
in my being there is naught but thee, O thou whose wishes are gratified.
By that means I have become thus naughted, like vinegar, in
thee (who are) an ocean of honey.”
As the stone that is entirely turned into pure ruby: it is filled with the qualities of the sun.
That stony nature does not remain in it: back and front, it is
filled with sunniness.
Afterwards, if it love itself, that (self-love) is love of the sun,O youth;
And if it love the sun with (all) its soul, ‘tis undoubtedly love of itself.
Whether the pure ruby loves itself or whether it loves the sun,
There is really no difference in these two loves: both sides
(aspects) are naught but the radiance of the sunrise.
Until it (the stone) has become a ruby, it is an enemy to itself,
because it is not a single “I”: two “I’s” are there;
For the stone is dark and blind to the day (-light): the dark is
essentially opposed to light.
(If) it love itself, it is an infidel, because it offers intense
resistance to the supreme Sun.
Therefore ‘tis not fitting that the stone should say “I,” (for)
it is wholly darkness and in (the state of) death.
A Pharaoh said, “I am God” and was laid low; a Mansur
(Hallaj) said, “I am God” and was saved.
The former “I” is followed by God’s curse and the latter
“I” by God’s mercy, O loving man;
For that one (Pharaoh) was a black stone, this one (Hallaj) a
cornelian; that one was an enemy to the Light, and this one
passionately enamoured (of it).
This “I,” O presumptuous meddler, was “He” (God) in the inmost
consciousness, through oneness with the Light, not
through (belief in) the doctrine of incarnation.
Strive that thy stony nature may be diminished, so that thy
stone may become resplendent with the qualities of the ruby.
Show fortitude in (enduring) self-mortification and affliction;
continually behold everlasting life in dying to self.
(Then) thy stoniness will become less at every moment, the
nature of the ruby will be strengthened in thee.
The qualities of (self-) existence will depart from thy body,
the qualities of intoxication (ecstasy) will increase in thy head (thy spiritual centre).
Become entirely hearing, like an ear, in order that thou mayst
gain an ear-ring of ruby.2 Literally, “an ear-ring (consisting) of a ruby ring.”
Mevlana


Translation by Reynold A. Nicholson
“The Mathnawi of Jalalu’ddin Rumi”

taken by Pentax K10D, at Istanbul

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