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2 of my favourite quotes from ‘The Forty Rules of the Religion of Love – Shams of Tabriz’, taken from the “The Forty Rules of Love” by Elif Shafak:
“Whatever happens in your life, no matter how troubling things might seem, do not enter the neighbourhood of despair. Even when all doors remained closed, God will open up a new path only for you. Be thankful! It is easy to be thankful when all is well. A Sufi is thankful not only for what he has been given but also for all that he has been denied. “
Seven Advice of Mevlana
1. In generosity and helping others be like a river
2. In compassion and grace be like the sun
3. In concealing others’ faults be like the night
4. In anger and fury be like the dead
5. In modesty and humility be like the earth
6. In tolerance be like a sea
7. Either exist as you are or be as you look
”It is God’s Kindness to terrify you in order to lead you to safety.” – Mawlana Rumi
All night, a man called “Allah”
Until his lips were bleeding.
Then the Devil said, “Hey! Mr Gullible!
How comes you’ve been calling all night
And never once heard Allah say, “Here, I am”?
You call out so earnestly and, in reply, what?
I’ll tell you what. Nothing!”
The man suddenly felt empty and abandoned.
Depressed, he threw himself on the ground
And fell into a deep sleep.
In a dream, he met Abraham, who asked,
“Why are you regretting praising Allah?”
The man said, “ I called and called
But Allah never replied, “Here I am.”
Abraham explained, “Allah has said,
“Your calling my name is My reply.
Your longing for Me is My message to you.
All your attempts to reach Me
Are in reality My attempts to reach you.
Your fear and love are a noose to catch Me.
In the silence surrounding every call of “Allah”
Waits a thousand replies of “Here I am.”
~ Mevlana Jalaluddin Rumi
Alhumdulilah we are blessed to be alive to experience another month of purification and healing. Our Lord has given us another opportunity to mend our relationship with Him subhanahu wa ta’ala.
O moon-faced Beloved,
the month of Ramadan has arrived
Cover the table
and open the path of praise.
O fickle busybody.
it’s time to change your ways.
Can you see the one who’s selling the halvah
how long will it be the halvah you desire?
Just a glimpse of the halvah-maker
has made you so sweet even honey says,
“I’ll out myself beneath your feet, like soil;
I’ll worship at your shrine.”
your chick frets within the egg
with all your eating and choking
Break out of your shell that your wings may grow.
Let yourself fly.
The lips of the Master are parched
from calling the Beloved.
The sound of your call resounds
through the horn of your empty belly.
Let nothing be inside of you.
Be empty: give your lips to the lips of the reed.
When like a reed you fill with His breath,
then you’ll taste sweetness.
Sweetness is hidden in the Breath
thats fills the reed.
Be like Mary – By that sweet breath
a child grew within her.
~ Mawlana Rumi
May we all experience a blessed and uplifting month, and may we exit the month in a much better state than we entered the month. Amin ya Rabb!
“No calamity befalls a Muslim but that Allah expiates some of his sins because of it, even though it were the prick he receives from a thorn.” (Narrated by Sayyida Aisha radhiAllahu anha, Sahi Bukhari, Vol: (7) Hadith No: (544))
Life can be tough at times, but the above hadith reminds us that nothing goes un-noticed to Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala, not even a tiny thing such as a prick from a thorn; so what about everything else that the heart endures when afflicted with calamities, hardships, trials/tribulations?
With this in mind, let’s rejoice and seek comfort in knowing that Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala is aware of what is going on in our hearts. Each difficult moment, day, month, year(s) we experience, lets be assured that He subhanahu wa ta’ala is aware of our state and situation. Life is short, and thus time is important; each breath is a blessing and gives us an opportunity to get closer to Him subhanahu wa ta’ala, which is really want all these situations are about- for us to run to Him subhanahu wa ta’ala. As Mawlana Rumi very eloquently sums it all up for us:
“He has afflicted you from every direction in order to pull you back to the Directionless.”
May our hearts always be attached to Him subhanahu wa ta’ala, and may each difficulty we all face be a means of purification for us. Amin ya Rabb! Allahumma salli ‘ala sayyidina Muhammad!
“Oh my heart,
Don’t become discouraged so easily.
In the hidden world, there are many mysteries,
Even if the whole planet threatens your life,
don’t let go of the Beloved’s robe
for even a breath.”
Have you ever taken part in an activity called “Trust Fall”?
Basically, “Trust Fall” is a trust-building activity performed as a group in which a person deliberately allows himself to fall, relying on the other members of the group to catch him. This type of activity is very popular in team building away sessions where the emphasise is on building a trusting relationship with your colleagues.
It’s amazing how during those type of exercises, we can just easily relax and fall back! We have the complete confidence that the individual/group will catch us. We trust them.
When the trials of life overwhelm us and we find ourselves perturbed, worried, distressed etc, we should apply the same principle and have conviction that no matter what happens, Allah will not let us fall! He subhanahu wa’tala will catch us.
So relax, fall back and let Him catch you. Just like Mawluna Rumi says in one of his poems “Fall into the Safety of God”.
“Turn in the circle of your true Existence
Be in harmony with your capacity,
with your created nature
Be in active submission.”
“A secret turning in us
makes the universe turn.
Head unaware of feet,
and feet head. Neither cares.
They keep turning.”
“Rise. Move around the center
as pilgrims wind the Kaaba.
Being still is how one clay clod
sticks to another in sleep,
while movement wakes us up
and unlocks new blessings.”
“We long to disappear
To enter the moment when
we are no longer turning,
but are being turned”
“The Sama is peace for the souls of
The one who knows this, possesses
peace in her heart.
The one who wants to be awakened,
is the one who sleeps in the middle
of the garden…..”
“Dancing is not rising to your feet painlessly
like a speck of dust blown around in the wind
Dancing is when you rise above both worlds
tearing your heart to pieces and giving up
“Your dance just took me today
and suddenly I began to whirl.
All the realms spun around me
in endless celebration.
My soul lost its grip,
My body shed its fatigue.
Hearing your hands clap and your
I floated up to the heavens!”
Quotes of poetry by Mawlana Jalaluddin Rumi
Dedicated to my dear Aunty Noor, and sisters Farah & Farhanah x