Monday, April 30, 2007

Creativity For Life

The phrase "creativity for life" means at least three different things.

One. Creativity can permeate a life: that a person can be creative in the way that she handles her job, solves problems around the house, or takes in a sunset. She manifests the qualities of a creative person, like imagination, resourcefulness, self-direction, and so on, and shines them like a beacon on whatever she thinks about or tackles. One shorthand moniker for this is that she is "everyday creative" or that she is engaged in "artful living."

Two. "Creativity for life" is that people who love things like art, music, literature, science, and, more broadly, smart things, gorgeous things, and evocative things, want them in their life. They do not want a life devoid of foreign movies, intellectual puzzles, or natural beauty. They love it that bookstores, museums, and concert halls exist and they love it that they can fill their living space and their spare time with art. Our shorthand for this is "an art-filled life" or "art-filled living."

Three. A third meaning of the phrase "creativity for life" is that a person spends a lifetime creating in a particular domain, a domain to which she decides to devote herself. She can be creative as a writer and devote herself to writing novels. She can be creative as a research biologist and devote herself to scientific inquiry. Our shorthand for this is "an art-committed life" or "identifying as an artist." Millions of people make this choice, with all of the joys and challenges that come with it.

An artful life, an art-filled life, and an art-committed life are not mutually exclusive ideas or mutually exclusive ways of being. But they do present different challenges. As soon as you decide to be creative in a domain and decide that you mean to live your life as a novelist, biochemist, actor, or sculptor, you introduce a set of profound challenges that would not have confronted you if you had "settled" for artful living and an art-filled life.

Whether your goal is artful living, an art-filled life, or an art-committed life, two keys to success are careful attention and regular practice. We tend to do a pretty poor job of paying attention to our realities; we seem programmed to repeat our days without improving our circumstances or deepening our awareness. Nor do we tend to want to commit to the patient apprenticeship that is required of someone who wants to translate her love of an art form into mastery. As general rules, we pay too little attention and we practice too little.

These daily activies might include such simple things as listening to music that moves you or getting fresh flowers for the living room. They might include carving out islands of mindfulness, five minutes here and five minutes there, where you pay quiet atteention to your life and consider how your might live more joyfully, wisely, and artfully.

You maintain lifelong creativity by maintaing daily creativity. Even on the busiest days, when the commute to work, a stressful job, and the commute home take up most of your waking hours, you can still have an art-committed first hour of the day, as you work on your novel, an art-filled evening, with music and the scent of flowers, and an artful day throughout as you mindfully bring your talents and your passion to the ordinary tasks of living. Artful living, an art-filled life, and an art-committed life are each available to you if you build up the habits of daily awareness and daily practice.

- From "Creativity for Life" by Eric Maisel. Credit: Daily Om

:: Eric Maisel, Ph.D., is America's foremost creativity coach and is widely known as the creativity expert. He is a columnist for Art Calendar Magazine, trains creativity coaches, offers workshops and keynotes nationally and internationally. Pin It Now!

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Feminine Mysteries of Love | Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee

The pain of love
became the medicine
for every heart,
The difficulty could never be solved
without love.

- Attâr


Love is the most powerful force in the universe, and for centuries mystics have understood the transformative potential of divine love. Love draws us back to love, love uncovers love, love makes us whole and love takes us Home. In the depths of the soul we are loved by God. This is the deepest secret of being human, the bond of love that is at the core of our being. And yet we have forgotten this essential nature of our being; we are hidden from our own deepest love. The mystical path is an uncovering of this love, an awakening to our own capacity to love and be loved.

Like everything that is created, love has a dual nature, positive and negative, masculine and feminine. The masculine side of love is "I love you." Love’s feminine quality is "I am waiting for you; I am longing for you." For the mystic, it is the feminine side of love, the longing, the cup waiting be filled, that takes us back to God. Longing is a highly dynamic state and yet at the same time it is a state of receptivity. Because our culture has for so long rejected the feminine, we have lost touch with the potency of longing. Many people feel this pain of the heart and do not know its value; they do not know it is their innermost connection to love.

Longing is the sweet pain of belonging to God. Once longing is awakened within the heart, it is the most direct way Home. Like the magnet, it draws us deep within our own heart where we are made whole and transformed. This is why the Sufi mystics have always stressed the importance of longing. The great Sufi Ibn ‘Arabî prayed, "Oh Lord, nourish me not with love but with the desire for love," while Rû mî expressed the same truth in simple terms, "Do not seek for water, be thirsty."

The feminine mystery of longing belongs to the nature of the soul, which is always feminine before God. In the innermost chamber of the heart we look toward God, receptive and attentive, needing God’s nourishment.

>> excerpt only, read the full article here from personal transformation website

Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee, Ph.D., is a Sufi teacher and the author of several books on Sufism, including "Sufism, The Transformation of the Heart," "The Face Before I was Born," "Catching the Thread: Sufism, Dreamwork, and Jungian Psychology". He was born in London in 1953 and has followed the Naqshbandi Sufi path since he was nineteen.

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Saturday, April 28, 2007

Reading Now | Atom from the Sun of Knowledge

i am currently reading the book Atom from the Sun of Knowledge by Lex Hixon. this is for sure one of the best sufi book i have read so far.

This comprehensive volume is an initiation into Sufism by a Western teacher of Islamic mysticism who saw in this ancient tradition a universal path to enlightenment. Atom from the Sun of Knowledge explores the spiritual secrets of the practices of Islam and interprets the spiritual wealth of its sacred book, the Quran, and the sayings (hadith) of the Prophet Muhammad, upon him pe peace. The volume also contains modern ecstatic Sufi poetry and spiritual discourses that illuminate the essential unity of all existence and the immense love at its heart. credit

My first real interest in mystical tradition of Islam (Tasawwuf or Sufi Path) was awakened by the writings of Sufi Master Hazrat Inayat Khan (1882 - 1927) who had such an universal approach in realizing all the religious and spiritual path which i found so close to my personal understanding and philosophy. his blessed writings still inspire me, teaches me in this path as it do to many across the world. may God bless him.

After that i came across Golden Sufi's current Master Llewellyn Vaughan Lee who captured my intellect and love. his talks and writings shine with great spiritual brilliance. i simply love his style, approach and philosophy when it comes to sufi discourses. may God bless his work. he also takes a very universal approach which is a great need, specially for our time when the world calls out for a greater harmony and inner work.

and now i have come across this great personality of Sufi Master Lex Hixon Nur Al Jerrahi (1941-1995), may God sanctify his secrets, whom i simply feel like a teacher i would love to take initiation from and to be with. he is a rare combination of a scholar and a mystic. if i had to follow an example of a contemporary modern personality i will says its Lex Hixon.

in Amazon one of the reader who identifies him/herself as a Passionate Muslim Mystic writes so beautifully about this book and the personality of Lex Hixon. i quote from Amazon: "Lex Hixon was a well-known spiritual seeker who was open to every authentic tradition, yet who came to embrace Islam as the deepest expression of his faith and life. He did this in an amazing, open way.

He encouraged his disciples to be, as he was, holders of "multiple spiritual citizenship" - I knew a dervish of his who was also a practicing Orthodox Christian, for example. When I myself after having taken hand with him, had powerful dreams drawing me to Christianity, he told me: "Then go and be a Christian dervish!"

This is to let you know what kind of Muslim he was: to my mind, a true Muslim, utterly intoxicated with the love of God, seeing God everywhere and in everyone. And this book is a manifestation of that love and joy.

When he died, with "Allah" on his lips, tribute was paid to him by Buddhists, Hindus, Christians, Muslims... If there is any antidote to the ills of Islamic extremism, perhaps it can be found in the pages of this book. Muslims, and all seekers, open your hearts to it."

i guess that sums up pretty well about the great author behind this book and also the work he has created. his understanding of Quran and few of the rendering of the verses are really astounding. God willing, with time i will quote some of the jewels from the book here.

"This spiritual book reflects some of the divine light entrusted to its author, our beloved Lex Hixon, and reveals some of the many secrets contained within his heart. He has tried to show the many paths to Truth taken by the mystic orders of Islam. This is in accordance with the saying of the Prophet, God's blessings and peace be upon him: 'The paths to God are as numerous as human breaths.' " - Shaykh Muhammad Nazim, author of Mercy Oceans' Pink Pearls

[::] You can learn more about Sufi Master Lex Hixon @ Lex Hixon.org
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Sufi Podcast | Edition 18 is in the air

Spiritual Health website on regular and irregular basis broadcast special podcasts on spirituality and sufi (Islamic spirituality, mysticism) theme. Dr. Bill Whitehouse is the author of the beautifully produced podcasts.

Click here to visit the Podcast page to listen to the newest edition. The podcast's content include: short stories, music, poems, essays, commentaries, interviews, and analysis from the perspective of a Sufi.

:: Reference:
Spiritual Health
All previous podcast archieve
Previous post on Podcast
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Who is He? | The Gateless Gate

Hoen said:
"The past and future Buddhas,
both are His servants.

Who is HE?"

:: The Gateless Gate, by Ekai, called Mu-mon, tr. Nyogen Senzaki and Paul Reps [1934]

Mumon's comment: If you realize clearly who He is, it is as if you met your own father on a busy street. There is no need to ask anyone whether or not your recognition is true.

Do not fight with another's bow and arrow.
Do not ride another's horse.
Do not discuss another's faults.
Do not interfere with another's work.

:: Credit: Sacred-Text Pin It Now!

Friday, April 27, 2007

Tasbeeh (Rosary) of Prophet 'Isa (Jesus), the Messiah

The Tasbih or Rosary of beloved mighty prophet 'Isa (Jesus), the Messiah and Sign of God was this:

Subhanal-hannanil-mannan;
Subhanal-abadiyyul-abad;
Subhanal-mubdi-al-mu'id.

Praised be to the All-Compassionate, the All-bounteous;
Praised be the Eternal, Never-Ending;
Praised be He who creates from nothing, then causes to die
and returns to its previous state.

Subhanal-khaliqil-azhim;
Subhanal-azhimil-'alim;
Subhanallahi wa bi-hamdihi;
Subhanallahil-azhim wa bi-hamdihi,
Istaghfirullah.

Praise be to the Creator, the Glorious;
Praise be to the All-Powerful, All-Knowing;
Praise be to God and glorified be He;
Praise be to God the Magnificent and glorified be He,
I beseech God for forgiveness.

Credit: For more Tasbeeh (Glorification of God) of other Biblical and Quranic Prophets and Angels visit NurMuhammad.

:: The word Tasbeeh (or Tasbih) in arabic means Rosary. In one sense it means uttering the praise of God, His beautiful Names, the process of glorifying or praising God. But in deeper meaning it also means to be doing the duties assigned by God swiftly and expeditiously. For detail meaning of Tasbeeh, visit here.

:: a Note of Clarification: Muslims prefer to call Jesus, the Messiah by his original Aramaic name 'Isa (same as Yeshua') instead of Jesus.

Yeshua is the original Aramaic proper name for Jesus the Nazarene. The word "Jesus" is actually a mis-transliteration of a Greek mis-transliteration. The Emperor Constatine even mistook Jesus for Apollo, the son of the Greek god Zeus. In Hebrew Isa or Yeshua means Salvation while the name Jesus has no intrinsic meaning in English whatsoever. read more.
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Thursday, April 26, 2007

What is Divine Love? | Mystics understanding of Love | part1

In the spirit of the Sufi Poetry Carnival, the theme being Divine Love here is a post that focuses on the theme, borrowing understandings of mystics and sufis on Love.

:: Sufi Master of Golden Sufi in California, Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee writes in his book Love is a Fire

Love is the primal music of life, the song of creation, the fabric of being human. The song of love is in every heart. Each of us longs to be loved, loved by a mother, a lover, a friend, a husband or wife. We long to be touched, to be held, to be embraced, to be understood, to be needed. We need to know that we are loved and we need to love in return.

For centuries mystics have been walking secret paths to love, paths that lead to the shores of love’s infinite ocean. Some of these travelers became known as Sufis, wayfarers on the path of love. Sufis are lovers of God, going Home to their heart’s Beloved. Because Sufis are lovers of God, their relationship with God is that of lover and Beloved.

Sufis all sing the one song, that of lover and Beloved. The Beloved looks into the heart of the lover and ignites it with the spark of remembrance, with the call for the journey. This spark becomes a fire that burns us, that empties us of everything except love. Through the fire of love we come to know the essence of love, the greatest secret hidden within every cell of creation. Finding what we really are, we become lost in the mystical truth of humanity, that there is nothing other than God. > via seeker after truth blog > also more extract here.

:: Indian Philosopher and Guru Sri Chinmoy writes "Divine love is the expansion of our consciousness. The very nature of divine love is to expand, expand, expand and become one with all that it touches. The more we expand ourselves, the sooner we feel the Universal Consciousness as our very own. And when we feel the Universal Consciousness as our very own, at that time we become the Universal Self. " - Excerpt from: The Inner Hunger by Sri Chinmoy

:: Divine Love Consoles Human Loss
:: Talk on Love Divine by Sri Chinmoy

:: Here is a beautiful Sohbet (Spiritual Companionship / Satsang / Talk) of Shaikh Kabir Helminski on the subject of Be a Lover of Unity via Threshhold Society.

:: Another a talk on Real Love by Shaykh Hisham Kabbani talk delivered @ Vancouver Canada April 2005: part 1, part 2, part 3

:: Osho's video lecture on Compassion - the Ultimate Flowering of Love - where Osho speaks in his genius style of his own. Excerpt from an original, 104-minute talk by Osho now available on DVD with the book Compassion.

:: Divine Love and Wisdom - Emanuel Swedenborg (originally published anonymously in Latin as Sapeintia Angelica de Divino Amore, Amsterdam, 1763). pdf file
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Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Ghazel for the Prophet’s Birthday | Kabir Helminski

Those eyes that search for the miraculous
see the Enchanter embodied in all forms.

People treasure what comes
to them in visions:
whether dragons, angels, beauties or pirs.

This is how Truth appears in the world;
yet the One is alone in the Universe.

And I, too, have made myself
a sandbox of meanings
Where the Infinite Eternal can be revealed.

Our Prophet is called the Praiseworthy.
And the praise of him purifies us.

In gardens of gratitude we till and water;
Healing herbs will grow, to cure the blind and the deaf.

Let us celebrate the birth of the Beloved
a candle for every nation, and gifts for every one.

(c) Kabir Helminski

:: This beautiful Ghazel by the beloved Shaikh Kabir is a gift for the upcoming Sufi Poetry Carnival. May Beloved's graceful glance be upon his path. It's worth noting that in Islamic literature, Ghazel is a special lyric poem, generally short and graceful in form and typically dealing with love. The genre developed in the late 7th Century Arabic. This ghazel particularly speak of the unendling love for the Master of all spiritual masters, Prophet Muhammad, upon him be peace.

Kabir Helminski is a Shaikh of the Mevlevi Sufi Path and is the Co-Director of the Threshold Society dedicated for providing structure for practice and study of Sufism and Spiritual Psychology.

One of our times gifted personality, prolific translator of many volumes of Sufi literature, including the works of Rumi, Kabir Helminski is the author of two books on Sufism: Living Presence and The Knowing Heart. For more than twenty years his focus has been developing and sharing a contemporary approach to Islamic concepts and practice, both within the Islamic community and outside of it. In 2001 he was the first Muslim to deliver the prestigious Wit Lectures on spirituality at Harvard Divinity School. read details bio.

:: The Threshold Society: http://www.sufism.org/ . image credit
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Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Spiritual Materialism and the Sacraments of Consumerism: A View from Thailand

Phra Phaisan Visalo, the author of the article quoted here is a Buddhist Monk from Thailand and in this article focuses on how the distinction between religious faith and consumerism is becoming increasingly vague these days. His observations although focus on Buddhist faith, specially in the Thai context, but it has much food for thought for other traditions as well.

The Spiritual Materialism may not necessarily take form as buying precious Buddha statues or protective lockets with imaginary deity but can come in many other sympotoms depending on the context of faith or tradition we are talking about.

i have seen this specially sick tendency of religious materialism in terms of consumerism in a very naked form in Indian Subcontinent among Muslim community when it comes to the Festival of Sacrifice (Eid-ul-Adha). Rich people will go to buy animals (generally cow or sheeps) of very high price (neglecting the poor in the neighbourhood or society in need) and there are huge competition, showiness all in the air by many, which is so against the spirit of the religion and the teaching of sacrifice itself. May be i can elaborate the problem on that in another post, God willing.

Lets go back to Phra Phaisan's article. I quote some interesting areas with the link of the full article at the end for you to read.

Consumerism rests on the principle that happiness and success come about through consuming or purchasing things, not through creating or realizing it by oneself. This belief causes people to see religion as merely another aspect of consuming, rather than something which should be applied and practiced. The result is that religion has become superstition ...

Nowadays, religious faith has been altered to the degree that it means purchasing auspicious objects to worship. One's faith (saddha) is no longer measured by how one applies it, how one lives life, but by how many holy or sacred articles one possesses.

Many Bangkok monasteries as well as those in the provinces have transformed into trading centers for such auspicious objects. In these temples, it's not just a few ordinary photographs, encased amulets, and yantra (lucky cloths) that are bought and sold, but an incredible diversity of products, like protective lockets to hang from your rear view mirror, fancy matted pictures, figurines, and signs with magic phrases (like "The House of Richness").

... consumerism has more than just a material aspect; people's trust, beliefs and views play a very important role as well. When you consider consumerism in terms of the functions that it performs as well as the attitude and understanding of people who are under its influence, it is not so different from other religions. But in the final analysis, the Religion of Consumerism cannot truly answer the deeper needs of humanity.

... Life's meaning is revealed not through building a new ego, but by delving deep until seeing that "self" is illusion. Consumerism offers no refuge for our lives, whereas even consuming religion itself cannot satisfy our deepest wish.

>> you can read the full article here.

Credit: Buddhist Peace Fellowship : also published in Seeds of Peace Vol. 14, No. 3 (Sept-Dec) image credit
:: Related Post: Spiritual Materialism Pin It Now!

Rumi's Poems | recitation and reading at YouTube | the best ones

Rumi Poems recited with images and texts.
{ } Come on SweetHeart
{ } Look at that mirror

Rumi Poetry Recitation Video. Duncan Mackintosh and Ashley Ramsden tell tales from Rumi as part of the 800th anniversary year of Rumi.

{ } Whoever brought me here
{ } Light that is One
{ } Those who flee from love

Rumi Poems fused with images and music.
{ } Become the Sky
{ } Say I Am You
{ } Beyond the Stars
{ } I was dead, I became alive (Persian)
{ } We are as the flute

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Monday, April 23, 2007

Religion in a Globalizing World

Pew Forum's biannual Faith Angle Conference on religion, politics and public life was held in Key West, Florida on December 2006.

Peter Berger, professor emeritus of religion, sociology and theology at Boston University, examined the globalization of religious pluralism and how the peaceful coexistence of different racial, ethnic and religious groups has become a global phenomenon. He argues that pluralism – not secularization – and the resulting emergence of religious choice is the best model for understanding religion in a globalizing world. A question-and-answer session followed his presentation.

i found the transcript of the scholarly discussion and few of the points discussed very interesting. just quoting a few highlighted areas. the complete transcripts link is at the end.

"We live in an age of overwhelming religious globalization"

"... what is happening with the globalization of religion is a globalization of pluralism. Pluralism, which was a much more geographically, much more limited phenomenon 150 or 200 years ago, has become a global phenomenon, and that has enormous implications ...

I would also argue that in terms of the effect on religion, pluralism is about the most important global fact to look at – not secularization.

The idea was very simple: the more modernity, the less religion. Modernization means a decline in religion. I think it was wrong. And I, along with most people in the field, changed my mind about 25 or so years ago, not for some philosophical or theological reason, but simply because the empirical evidence made it impossible to adhere to this theory.

.. one reason why secularization theory just collapses under its own weight is the United States, a strongly religious country, and if modernity is the key variable, are you going to seriously argue that the United States is less modern than Stockholm?"

One of the prominent scholarly mind of our contemporary time, Peter Berger takes on subjects such as what is pluralism, modernity, secularity, denomination. The whole discussion transcript can be read here.

:: About The Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life | Launched in 2001, the forum seeks to promote a deeper understanding of issues at the intersection of religion and public affairs.

The Forum pursues its mission by delivering timely, impartial information to national opinion leaders, including government officials and journalists. As a nonpartisan, non-advocacy organization, the Forum does not take positions on policy debates. read more
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The tulip

A tulip in spring,
Its cup opens to God’s grace.

Stunning in its simplicity,
It takes on multiple hues.

Swaying gently to the wind,
It becomes a breathing Psalm.

(c) Kenza, April 2007
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treasure of Unity | Shaikh Nur Al-Jerrahi


random green leaves
Originally uploaded by omnia.
"The mystical interpreters of all sacred scriptures, those whose gaze penetrates deeper than the visible world, always discover this extreme treasure of Unity, this Divine Peace in which all enmity and rivalry between different point of views ceases."

- Master Nur Al-Jerrahi
(Prof. Lex Hixon PhD)
may God sanctify his secrets.

from 'Atom from the Sun of Knowledge'. Amazon review

:: credit: http://lexhixon.org & PirPress Pin It Now!

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Passion of the Earth | a beautiful project worth sharing on Earth Day

When i first came across Melanie Weidner's work in her website, Listen for Joy, i was really amazed. I totally loved her work, specially the spiritually rich arts under the Passion of the Earth Project. The images have a great mystical attraction, full of joy and spiritual message which i enjoyed. So i wanted to share her beautiful work on this Earth Day. Visit her Art Gallery to see other Arts by Melanie.

Passion of the Earth Project: The Passion of the Earth can perhaps best be described as a cross between the traditional Catholic Stations of the Cross and the contemporary “Cosmic Walk.” Specifically, the Passion of the Earth spiritual exercise is a narrative divided into seven sections or “stations” telling a version of the creation story. Each station includes a piece of writing and a piece of art which hang in the Monastery of St. Gertrude’s Spirit Center retreat facility.

The Passion of the Earth is designed to be a spiritual exercise that enables people to see the earth and the cosmos not only as God’s creation, but as the most basic expression of God’s very self. The earth and the cosmos are not inanimate objects for human beings to use, abuse, and destroy as they see fit, but a gift of God our creator to reverence and cherish. Humanity does not stand above creation as dominating caretakers, but rather we humans stand within its midst as one small part of the vast expression of the cosmos.

“As human beings, our self-reflective awareness gives to us special obligation to understand and respond to this gift of creation. As humanity has sought to dominate and indiscriminately use the resources of the earth, often in destructive ways, humanity now has an obligation to understand and heal our relationship with the earth.”

About the Artist: Melanie Weidner is a Quaker contemplative artist and spiritual director. Her work inspires spiritual reflection and encourages others to explore creativity and prayer. She is open for Spiritual Listening to anyone who is in need of it. Visit here for details.


More: {The Installation} . {Art and Text} . {Project Description} . {Listen for Joy}

© Melanie Weidner, 2007, graphic used with permission, from www.ListenForJoy.com

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Understanding Sufi Poetry | Speed-linking Web Resources

Speed-linking few notable sites and articles across the web on Sufi Poetry, their background meanings and on Sufi Poets.

[::] Sufi Master Inayat Khan's writing on Sufi Poetry, Poetic Imagery is a good place to start with. From his writing "Sufi poetic imagery stands by itself, distinct and peculiar in its character. It is both admired and criticized for its peculiarity. ... These free thinkers of Persia, with their dancing souls and continual enthusiasm, began to express their souls in this particular imagery, using words such as 'the beloved,' 'wine,' 'wine-press,' and 'tavern.' This poetry became so popular that not only did the wise benefit from it, but also the simple ones enjoyed the beauty of its wonderful expressions, which made an immediate appeal to every soul. No doubt souls who were already awakened and those on the point of awakening were inspired by these poems. Souls who were opening their eyes after the deep slumber of many years began to rise up and dance." read here. more writings.

[::] One of the most comprehensive web resource on Sufism and Sufi theme is maintained by Dr. Alan Godlas at University of Georgia. His page on Sufi Poets and Sufi Poetry has a good deal of information.

"Sufism and the encounters that Sufism facilitates - encounters with God, love, and the deepest aspects of human consciousness - have evoked feelings in Sufis that have poured out through their ravaged hearts onto their lucid tongues, providing us with some of the most beautiful and profound poetry ever written." visit here.

[::] Whenever classical Persian poetry is discussed, the subject of the symbolism and meaning of its images is bound to arise. The article in The Muhyiddin Ibn Arabi Society talks about Jami's Symbology on Divine Love and the image of wine. read here.

[::] Poetry Chaikhana has a introduction to Islam and Sufi Poetry with works from eminent masters. Also you can browse the Sacred Poems on different theme here.

[::] Seeker After Truth has a nice article by Hossein M. Elahi by the title, Poetics and Aesthetics in the Persian Sufi Literary Tradition. good read. Also check other entries on Sufi Poetry. Western Encounters with Persian Sufi Literature by Farhang Jahanpour is another article worth reading.

[::] A wonderful Interview with David Fideler on Sufi Poetry and on his latest book Love's Alchemy where he address quesions such as How did Rumi ever become the best-selling poet in America or what makes Rumi so popular?

Answering the important question, what kind of message do you think the Sufi poets have for us today, as modern people living in today’s world? David Fideler responds "I think that people are incredibly hungry for a deeper vision of human nature than is offered by, or even recognized by, American culture. It’s probably safe to say that we have developed the most self-centered kind of psychological outlook ever seen in human history - and the perspective of the Sufi poets is directly opposite to that.

For the Sufis, you only begin to discover who you really are when you go beyond yourself. While that may seem like a paradox, it’s a major theme in the poems we’ve collected in Love’s Alchemy. ... The reason that love can be such a transformative force is because, in love, the ego is no longer in control, or the center of the personality. If you are really in love, someone else becomes far more important than you yourself - love forces you to go beyond yourself. In the words of one of the poets, “When I went beyond myself, the pathway finally opened.”

When we start having experiences of depth in our lives - and develop the ability to no longer identify with the socially conditioned ego - that’s an opening, and an invitation to discover who and what we really are.

Another thing that people resonate strongly with is the Sufi view that there is an underlying, divine unity that binds all people together, despite the outward differences of religion and culture. That’s something that many of us instinctively realize and feel, but no one says it better than the Sufi poets - and they were saying it hundreds of years ago". read the full interview. its very rich.

[::] Spirituality Practice has a lovely section on Sacred Poetry.

[::] Salonim has a nice article by Ali Alizadeh by the title, Confused About Sufi Poetry? The article takes on the rise in the contemporary mainstream Western readers’ interest in Sufi poetry which he points at the same time potentially positive, and yet paradoxically dubious.

[::] The Arab World Book website has an article on Sufi Poetry and selection from Rumi's Masnawi (A. H. 670). "The very essence of Sufism is poetry, and the Eastern Mystics are never tired of expatiating on the 'Ishq or "love to God," which is the one distinguishing features of Sufi mysticism"

[::] Giuseppe Scattolin's article: The Key Concepts of al-Farghâni's Commentary on Ibn al-Fârid's Sufi Poem, al-Tâ'iyyat al-Kubrâ (pdf) via The Muhyiddin Ibn 'Arabi Society

[::] Wikipedia Entry on Sufi Poetry Pin It Now!

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Sufi Poetry Carnival | celebrating Divine Love | call for poetry submission

Sufi Poetry Carnival LogoIn Sacred Remembrance of Divine, Tiel Aisha Ansari and me, Sadiq will be hosting the Sufi Poetry Blog Carnival on May 28th. Blog Carnival is collection of blog/site links on a specific subject/theme. The theme of the Sufi Poetry Carnival will be Divine Love.

Sufis are the Lover of God. Sufi Poetry is extra-ordinary in a sense that they spring from the depth of the heart which for sufis, is the Sacred Throne of God. When such sense of sacredness comes into play, the resulted creation does wonderful things by taking us outside ourselves. They produce a shift in awareness, help us rediscover our inner-self and give us hints to catch a glimpse of what Reality really is.

You are welcome to participate with a poetry of yours. The theme being Divine Love, you don’t have to be a Sufi to express it. Just understanding (or even a weak effort to understand, the intention, the niyaah) and strive for expression of Divine Love is enough to jump into the Caravan, into the Tavern of Wonder.

:: Submission: Please submit by May 15th. The First Edition of the carnival will be up on May 28th, God willing.

If you do have a blog or website, you can submit a link at Sufi Poetry Carnival. [visit here]. If you wish to submit a favorite poem from the Master Sufi Poets, you can also submit the web link here.

In case you don't have a blog or website but would like to be included, you can email me your submission at mysticsaint at gmail dot com

We will appreciate very much if you spread the word and help us sing the glory of the Beloved through the pens and key-strokes of the poor lovers.

The secret of love is not for everyone
So the kissing of this great courtyard
is not in everyone’s destiny.

Take yourself close to the heart aflame with Divine Love
This fire cannot be ignited it has to be attained.
(credit)


Visit
THE SUFI POETRY CARNIVAL
first edition
. may 28, 2007 .


# More References: + Knocking from Inside + Writeous Sisters + Share the Sufi Poetry Carnival icon

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Friday, April 20, 2007

Bhakti (Devotion) | Sri Anandamoyi Ma


"It is the pure, undefiled flower
that finds a place at the Feet of the Lord
and nowhere else.

Take great care to spend your life in spotless purity,
worthy to be dedicated in worship to the Lord.

Speak about Him,
meditate on His Glory,
try to see Him in everyone, Him Who is the Self,
the breath of life, the heart of hearts.

You feel lonely?
In very truth: you are not alone.
Does the Supreme Friend ever forsake His friends?"

- Sri Ma (Anandamoyi 1896 - 1982)
the name Anandamoyi Ma means Joy Permeated Mother
Matri Vani 1963 P. 99. credit
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Thursday, April 19, 2007

Meshk Ilahi - the islamic sacred hymn tradition getting started in Singapore

Last Tuesday night, 17th April i had the honor to participate in a circle which will go into history as the beginning of regular Meshk Ilahi gathering here in Singapore. Its a Turkish form of Zikr (Dhikr) or Remembrance of the Divine.

Meshk Ilahis comprise a genre of traditional Islamic hymns emanating from the Ottoman Empire dating back several hundreds of years. The word, Meshk means putting thoughts to work; is used to refer to elevating spiritual states through music, and by extension to practicing Ilahis whereas Ilahi meaning hymn, spiritual song.

The lyrics are from shaykhs, sayyids, seekers and poets such as Mevlana Rumi, Yunus Emre and others. Each Ilahi is comprised in a particular makam, or Turkish musical scale; each transmitting a unique spiritual station or mood. Rhythmic elements of the Ilahis are in two forms: bender (frame drum) and the chanting of Asma-al-Husna (the Most Beautiful Names of the Divine). During the standing zikr of the Jerrahiyya, the Asma itself the Remembrance proper, creating poly-rhythms as it weaves pulses with the drum beat. The melody of the Ilahis rides above the rhythms of the Asma and drum, altogether enveloping and infusing one’s open heart which has to do with the Alchemy of the Heart.

Here the original Turkish hymns are translated and will be sung in English. The translations are provided by the late Shaykh Nur Al-Jerrahi (Prof. Lex Hixon PhD), who received transmission and authorization from Grand Shaykh Muzaffer Ozak al-Jerrahi al-Halveti (may their secrets be sanctified). Many of the Ilahis are from the time of Mevlana Rumi, some 800 years ago.

Several Turkish Sufi Orders have been established worldwide, including in the United States, and one of these, the Nur Ashki Jerrahi Order has likewise recently been established here in Singapore, via the U.S. This gathering is facilitated by the Singapore based khalifa of the Nur Ashki Jerrahi Order of Sufis: Mustafa Abdul Wadud al-Jerrahi al-Halveti.

The Zikr circle is open to all and will be meeting weekly from 1st of May, 2007 God willing. Read details here.

::The official website of the Nur Ashki Jerrahi Sufi Order
:: About the Nur Ashki Jerrahi Sufi Order via Wikipedia Pin It Now!

tell me, what is God? | Kabir

Are you looking for Me?
I Am in the next seat.
My shoulder is against yours.

you will not find Me in the stupas,
not in temple's shrine rooms,
nor in synagogues, nor in cathedrals:
not in masses, nor kirtans,
not in legs winding around your own neck,
nor in eating nothing but vegetables.

When you really look for Me,
you will see Me
instantly - you will find Me
in the tiniest abode of time.

Kabir says: student, tell me, what is God?
He is the Breath inside the breath.

- Kabir (1440—1518) who was one of the most interesting personalities in the history of Indian mysticism.

:: Mitchell, Stephen A. The Enlightened Heart (1993) p.72. HarperCollins. credit Pin It Now!

al-Hakam | The Judge | 99 Divinely Sublime Attributes of God

al-Hakam

. The Judge
. The Giver of Justice
. The Arbitrator

. The One who is the supreme arbitrating magistrate. The One who is the only true judge.

. The One who always delivers justice in every situation. The One whose judgments and decrees are never over-turned or thwarted.

. The One who makes the final decision of the nature of all matters. The One who arbitrates all disputes.

Behold, God bids you to deliver
all that you have been entrusted with
unto those who are entitled thereto,
and whenever you judge between people,
to judge with justice.
(The Quran 4:58) transliteration

Shall I then seek a judge other than God? And He it is Who has revealed to you the Book (which is) made plain; and those whom We have given the Book know that it is revealed by your Lord with truth, therefore you should not be of the disputers. (The Quran 6:114) transliteration

Practice as Ya-Hakam.

:: Introduction to the post series
:: Previous posts on 99 Divinely Sublime Attributes of God

:: On the practice of 99 Beautiful Names of God
:: Most Beautiful Names of Allah
:: Audio Chants of the 99 Beautiful Names
:: image credit Pin It Now!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Awareness in the Breath | Awareness in the Moment

"Every breath which is exhaled from within must be exhaled with awareness and presence of mind and so that the mind does not stray into forgetfulness."

Baha ad-din Naqshband said: "The foundation of our work is in the breath. The more that one is able to be conscious of one's breathing, the stronger is one's inner life. It is a must for everyone to safeguard his breath in the time of his inhalation and exhalation and further, to safeguard his breath in the interval between the inhalation and exhalation."

As the seeker becomes occupied with the exercise of the moment (i.e. remembering the breath), he turns his attention from remembering the past and thinking of the future, and focuses on each breath until it is expired.

Sa'd ud-din Kashghari added: "Hush dar dam (Awareness of breath) is moving from breath to breath so there is no heedlessness but rather there is presence, and with each breath that we take should be the remembrance of the Real."

Sheikh Abul Janab Najmuddin al-Kubra said in his book, Fawatih al-Jamal: "Dhikr (remembrance of God in the breath) is flowing in the body of every single living creature by the necessity of their breath -- even without will -- as a sign of obedience, which is part of their creation. Through their breathing, the sound of the letter 'Ha' of the Divine Name Allah is made with every exhalation and inhalation and it is a sign of the Unseen Essence serving to emphasize the Uniqueness of God. Therefore it is necessary to be present with that breathing, in order to realize the Essence of the Creator."

The name Allah, which encompasses the ninety-nine Names and Attributes, consists of four letters, Alif, Lam, Lam and Hah (ALLAH). The people of Sufism say that the absolute unseen Essence of Allah Exalted and Almighty is expressed by the last letter vowelized by the Alif, "Hah." It represents the Absolutely Unseen "He-ness" of the Exalted God (Ghayb al-Huwiyya al-Mutlaqa lillah 'azza wa jall) in which the mystic loses his separate identity with every "hah" in his breath. The first Lam is for the sake of identification (tacrif) and the second Lam is for the sake of emphasis (mubalagha).

The soul has long been thought to be in the breath. "For the early thinkers the soul was visualized sensuously as a breath-body." Awareness of the breath makes us aware of the soul and the inner body, inner self, which belong to the moment.

The Quranic verse that points to the secret of God and creation in the breath: Then He (God) fashioned him (adam) and breathed into him of His Spirit. The Quran 32:9

:: from the Eleven Principles of the Naqshbhandi Path @ GoldenSufi website.
:: another good article in wahiduddin.net on breath's esoteric value image credit: Listen for Joy Pin It Now!

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Being Useful | Wisdom of St. John Chrysostom

"You can continue to fast, sleep on the ground, eat cinders, weep without ceasing. But if you are not useful to others, you are doing nothing worthwhile."


- St. John Chrysostom (349–407)

it reminds me of the blessed saying of Jesus Christ, upon him be peace, on the context when he protested even calling him a 'good' teacher, because he knew for sure what is important and what is not; what matters and what not.

Read from Mark 10:17-18: "As Jesus was coming out to the road, a man came running to him and knelt in front of him. He asked Jesus, "Good Teacher, what should I do to inherit eternal life?" And Jesus said to him, "Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone."

our calling good or reciting decorative verses ammounts to nothing until we serve. to serve humanity is to serve God. don't just say 'i love God', cause your saying or your worship doesn't benefit God who is Independent of Creation. its only service to the creation, even to the lowest animal is an expression of Loving God, nothing else matters. being useful to others, serving others - thats the mantra of a realized human being.
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Carnival of Islam in the West | 8th Edition is up

The 8th Edition of the Carnival of Islam in the West is up and running. Its hosted by Baraka in her lovely blog: Truth and Beauty.

[visit Carnival of Islam in the West : 8th Edition]

The Carnival of Islam in the West started as an effort to allow Muslims in the west to express what life is like for Muslims living in the west. The carnival is also meant to be a voice for the significant amount of Muslims who are now part of west. its also a great way to bring together the like minded people from every corner of the world, particularly from the west.

Glad to say that one of the post from Inspirations and Creative Thoughts: Peaceful Warrior and Jihand in Islam is also featured in the carnival under Religion and Philosophy category. Thanks God this time the carnival has grown quite beautifully with many thoughtful articles and sharings on many diverse subjects. We hope that this carnival will be helpful as a bridge builder among the people of West, Muslims and Islam.

:: Know details about the background of the carnival from Hakim Abdullah's blog
:: details about the present and future edition of the carnival
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Al-Hafîz | The Protector | 99 Divinely Sublime Attributes of God

Al-Hafîz

. The Preserver
. The Protector
. The Guardian

. The One whose power preserves the heavens and the earth. The One who is the guardian and preserver of all the worlds.

. The One who protects and preserves all of creation from perishing. The One who is vigilantly guarding every detail of all that has been created.

. The One who remembers and preserves all that has ever been and all that is, while keeping under Divine protection the knowledge of all that shall be.

... surely my Lord is the Preserver of all things.
(inna rabbee AAala kulli shay-in hafeethun) (The Quran 11.057)

...with Us is a record well preserved. (The Quran 50:4)

Practice as Ya-Hafîz. (O the Protector)

:: Introduction to the post series
:: Previous posts on 99 Divinely Sublime Attributes of God

:: On the practice of 99 Beautiful Names of God
:: Most Beautiful Names of Allah
:: Audio Chants of the 99 Beautiful Names
:: image credit Pin It Now!

Monday, April 16, 2007

Prophet Muhammad's advice on Zikr (Dhikr), Divine Remembrance

Hadrat Ali, May God be please with him, asked our Master the Prophet, peace be upon him, to teach him the easiest, the most valuable, the most immediate way to salvation.

Our Master the Prophet waited for the angel Gabriel to bring the answer from the Divine Source. He came and taught our Master to say, "La ilaha" - there is no god, no other reality - while turning his blessed face to the right;

and to say "illa-Allah" - but God alone, Allah alone, the Supreme Reality alone - while turning his face to his left, towards his blessed pure heart.

Our Master, the Prophet repeated this 3 times; and then taught it to Ali, making him repeat it 3 times. Then he taught the Divine Witnessing of Grand Unity, Oneness (Tawhid) in the same manner to his companions. Ali was the first to ask for it and was the first to be taught.

- From the book The Secret of Secrets (Sirr al-Asrar) by Hadrat 'Abd al-Qadir al-Jilani (1077-1166), may God sanctify his secrets.

:: This is a beautiful example of Zikr (Dhikr) or Remembrace practice as taught by the Prophet. Not only the sacred formula but also the accompanying physical movement that he taught is very simple but very powerful at the same time. When pronouncing the negation of everything else, all other false reality with turning our face from left to right is symbolic of the negation. Its as if we are crossing out the false realities, false objectives, false ilaha by saying La ilaha. The word 'La' means "no" or "there is no" in this context. 'ilaha' is any object worthy of worship, god; but the implication goes much deeper than just false god. Anything that is other than God is also inclusive.

While turning the face to left and finally towards the heart while saying illa-Allah is acknowleding the Divine, the only Reality that exists in truth. The Heart is the symbol of the repository of the Divine Secret, the Throne of God for mystics. Turning towards it, is realigning our consciousness to the Truth.

This whole formula, the sacred mantra, the witenessing (shahada) forumal is the key to Divine Witnessing of Grand Unity. Be cautioned: this practice is so powerful that if you do the practice with concentration, with understanding and stillness of mind you are to reach a level of ecastasy unlike anything you have tasted before. with prolonged practice this may create illumination of consciousness, God willing.

... verily remembrance of God is the greatest.
(walathikru Allahi akbaru) (The Quran 29:45).
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The real saints, the real miracles

in the rule book of roman catholic church if you want to call someone a saint you need to prove by some miracles. i say, come to any third world countries and you will surely find saints in many houses. yes, perhaps vatican will never call them saints, but they are no lesser saints from the stand point of their devotion, sacrifice and their status to God. you might be wondering, whom i am talking about?


i am talking about the thousands and millions of simple women, the mothers of third world countries who dedicate their lives, struggle in an unthinkable manner, completely selflessly work for the happiness of the family, for their children. nobody pays them for their life-long dedication, but they act only to see that smile on the face of their beloved child.

perhaps its a built-in quality among the women who become mothers that they will sacrifice immensely for their children, but from my limited experiences i have seen women who have done and doing constantly extra-ordinary sacrifices.

there are such women very common who would deny any sorts of enjoyment, personal ambitions and dreams in their life to provide for their child. they dont stop to think about themselves for a moment in their whole adult life. yes, from western standard you may call them stupid, fools. perhaps they are fools of God, they are fools for the sake of their pure love, they are made fools for a purpose. these thousands and millions of woman in the third world country (and also in the developed country) are no less saints when you see their everyday struggle.

single mothers in the developed countries even, a few cases that i know of are so touching, when you hear their day to day struggle just to keep running the family, ensuring a descent education for their child. they wont care for their health, they wont care about their personal betterment, but would work hours and hours under hard conditions just to make their child's life a little better, more smooth financially. end of the day that very child may or may not take care of the poor mother, but she will do it anyway. thats how the fools of God work.

perhaps vatican has no idea how a single mother can be a sole warrior in the face of this harsh world and waging her battle not for herself but to provide for their children.

perhaps vatican don't count what miracle a simple woman from a third world country is producing on a daily basis when they themeselves remain hungry, starve and at the same time feed their children. what is the biggest miracle but the manifestation of pure love, which only a mother has for her child. yes that pure love is the real miracle.

their names may not be listed in the canon of catholic church, but we can never deny their individual personal miracles. from the moment they step into a new family to the moment of childbirth to the whole drama of bringing the child up ... there are countless miracles all along.

yes i call them real saints. i don't see point to call the congregation for the causes of saints as they call in vatican concerning the declartion of sainthood, because one can easily see miracles that are all in the air. you just have to open your eyes and be a little sensitive.

vatican may want to see the proof of intercession for the saint. come to the Last Messenger of God, Muhammad, upon him be peace and you will read that he assured that among the prayers which are never rejected by God is the prayer of a mother for her child.

come to their status and let me recall a famous saying of the Prophet: 'Paradise, (the final destiny of salvation) is at the feet of mothers'.

do you see the real saints in this world?


:: Reference: You can read a nice article summing up the Making of Saints in Vatican. Pin It Now!

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Ringing of the Bards Carnival is Speaking To Each Other

Fellow blogger, sister Tiel Aisha Ansari is hosting Ringing of the Bards Poetry Carnival at her blog: Knocking from Inside.

Its a lovely effort with poetry of diverse taste and flavours. This time Tiel has decided to play with the titles of submitted poems, and they're organized into pairs that seem to speak to each other.

For example the poem Everywhere Miracles from this blog has been tagged with ... (Inconsequential) blog's poetry Accidents Happen. The carnival featured celebrated poets and writers such Daniel Abdal-Hayy Moore and Irving Karchmar.

:: Read the Poetry Carnival: Ringing of the Bards here.

:: Learn more about the Ringing of the Bards Poetry Carnival. if you are interested, you can also be a host for an upcoming episode.

image credit Pin It Now!

Speed Linking | Sufism related updates

The Sufis whirl into the world of politics by Yunus Momoniat via Mail and Guardian Online
Professor Abdulkarim Tayob of the University of Cape Town suggests that today’s Muslims’ increasing interest in Sufism is a sign of a turn away from the politicisation of Islam that emerged since the 1970s. ... Sufis practise a form of benevolence that can lend itself to a kind of accommodation with the powers that be, and in a post-9/11 world, Sufism has become the object of American political scientists keen to find a strain of Islam they might deploy in the West’s 21st-century crusade against the political Islam of the Islamists.

A brief survey of Sufi politics around the world reveals their imbrication in a series of conflict situations, both on the side of power and against it. During the 19th century the Sufi order was a significant force of resistance against foreign occupation in Sudan, Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Libya and elsewhere, but this was essentially a traditionalist stance against modernisation, which later nationalists opposed. read on
Commemoration of Farid al-Din Attar held in Nishapur, Khorasan province in Iran. Farid al-Din Attar, Persian great poet, was the principal Muslim mystical poet and writer in the second half of the 12th century.Attar’s tomb in Nishapur, attracted a large number of tourists every year who pay visit to Nishapur historic city to pay their attribute to this great Persian poet and writer. Every year, concurrent with commemoration day of Farid al- Din Attar Neishaburi on 14th of April, a special ceremony is held in city of Neishabur, Khorasan Razavi province with attendance of intellectuals, academic members, authors, students, etc. read on
Tehran is to host an international symposium in October 28th to 30th, 2007 to mark the 800th birth anniversary of renowned Persian poet and mystic Rumi. The United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has named the year 2007 "Rumi's Year" to commemorate the poet known as "the poet of nations".

Spiritually devoted world musicians via Bay Area Reporter
Filmmaker Stephen Olsson on his new doc 'Sound of the Soul' making of a flim on sufi music. also featured in examiner. read

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Al-Hâdî | The Guide | 99 Divinely Sublime Attributes of God

Al-Hâdî

. The Guide
. The Leader
. The Guide on the Right Path

. The One who continually shows the right way. The One who kindly guides aright.

. The One who guides hearts to a knowledge of the Divine essence.

The One who is the source of all guidance. The One who faithfully continues to guide aright until the goal is finally attained.

Who is it that guides you
in the midst of the deep darkness of land and sea,
and sends forth the winds as a glad tiding of His coming grace? (The Quran 27:63) transliteration

Without an escort you're bewildered on a familiar road;
don't travel alone on a way you haven't seen at all;
don't turn your head away from the Guide.
- Mathnawi I:2944-2945, tr. Helminski

Practice as Ya-Hâdî

:: Introduction to the post series
:: Previous posts on 99 Divinely Sublime Attributes of God

:: On the practice of 99 Beautiful Names of God
:: Most Beautiful Names of Allah
:: Audio Chants of the 99 Beautiful Names
:: image credit Pin It Now!

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Swami Vivekananda on Woman and Divine Feminine

Swami Vivekananda (January 12, 1863 - July 4, 1902) was a Vedantic monk who at one time saw women as an obstacle. However on realising the highest truth he saw no distinction between sex and saw in women the presence of the Divine Mother.

Swami Vivekananda worked effortlessly to try and uplift the plight of women, in particular Indian Women. These are few of the collection of his thoughts on women.

~ Soul has no sex, it is neither male nor female. It is only in the body that sex exists, and the man who desires to reach the spirit cannot at the same time hold sex distinctions. (CW ,V.4, P.176)

~ The best thermometer to the progress of a nation is its treatment of its women.

~ There is no chance for the welfare of the world unless the condition of women is improved.

~ Woman has suffered for aeons, and that has given her infinite patience and infinite preserverance.

~ The idea of perfect womanhood is perfect independence.

~ It is very difficult to understand why in this country [India] so much difference is made between men and women, whereas the Vedanta declares that one and the same conscious Self is present in all beings. You always criticize the women, but say what have you done for their uplift? Writing down Smritis etc., and binding them by hard rules, the men have turned the women into manufacturing machines! If you do not raise the women, who are living embodiment of the Divine Mother, don’t think that you have any other way to rise.

~ [Talking to an American audience] I should very much like our women to have your intellectuality, but not if it must be at the cost of purity. I admire you for all that you know, but I dislike the way that you cover what is bad with roses and call it good.

Intellectuality is not the highest good. Morality and spirituality are the things for which we strive. Our women are not so learned, but they are more pure.

~ In India the mother is the center of the family and our highest ideal. She is to us the representative of God, as God is the mother of the universe. It was a female sage who first found the unity of God, and laid down this doctrine in one of the first hymns of the Vedas. Our God is both personal and absolute, the absolute is male, the personal, female. And thus it comes that we now say: ’The first manifestation of God is the hand that rocks the cradle’. (CW V.4 p.170)

- Swami Vivekananda / credit
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Friday, April 13, 2007

The Sacred Divine

in the deep forest she appeared.

i asked Her divine blessings
and told her i wanted to carry
the image of Her Face.

she smiled,
a smile so full of bliss!
saying nothing, she took
a leaf from the nearby branch
and held to me.

take it, said she
almost whispering in her
mesmerizing sweet voice.

i took the leaf.
it's color golden and orange
the shape like a heart, wide.

and when i glanced carefully
i saw a mysterious smile
on the face of the leaf.

immediately i was absorbed so much
in the mysterious smile
couldn't take my eyes away.

when i finally looked up,
nowhere was she.
and that very leaf was held
still on the branch
beholding that wonderful smile.

and in my bewilderment and intoxication
i remained there absorbed in the smile.

i still do.


(c) MysticSaint | Oct, 2006 | penned during trip to Sabah, East Malaysia while trekking the dense forest at the base of Mount Kota Kinabalu, a world heritage site.
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Al-Ghanî | The Self-Sufficient | 99 Divinely Sublime Attributes of God

Al-Ghanî

. The Self-Sufficient
. The Rich
. The Independent One

. The One who transcends all needs.
. The One who is free from any wants.
. The One who is free from any dependence.
. The One who flourishes without help or aid of any sort, yet who is needed by all.
. The One upon whose wealth and riches all others depend.

That is because their Messengers brought them the Clear Signs, but they said: “Are human beings going to guide us?” So they were unbelievers and turned away. But God is completely independent of them. God is Rich Beyond Need, Praiseworthy. (The Quran, 64:6) transliteration

Whatever is in the heavens and in the earth belongs to God. We have instructed those given the Book before you, and you yourselves, to have fear [and awareness] of God. But if you are unbelievers, what is in the heavens and in the earth belongs to God. God is Rich Beyond Need, Praiseworthy. (The Quran, 4:131) trans

Moses said: “If you were to be ungrateful, you and everyone on Earth, God is Rich Beyond Need, Praiseworthy.” (The Quran, 14:8) trans

Practice as Ya-Ghanîu

:: Introduction to the post series
:: Previous posts on 99 Divinely Sublime Attributes of God

:: On the practice of 99 Beautiful Names of God
:: Most Beautiful Names of Allah
:: Audio Chants of the 99 Beautiful Names
:: image credit Pin It Now!

Thursday, April 12, 2007

this is Mohammad | writings from Alphonse de Lamartine

“Never has a man proposed for himself, voluntarily or involuntarily, a goal more sublime, since this goal was beyond measure: undermine the superstitions placed between the creature and the Creator, give back God to man and man to God, reinstate the rational and saintly idea of divinity in the midst of this prevailing chaos of material and disfigured gods of idolatry.

Never has a man accomplished in such a short time such an immense and long lasting revolution in the world, since less that two centuries after his predication, Islam, preaching and armed, ruled over three Arabias, and conquered to God’s unity Persia, the Khorasam, Transoxania, Western India, Syria, Egypt, Ethiopia, and all the known continent of Southern Africa, many islands of the Mediterranean, Spain and part of Gaulle.

If the grandeur of the aim, the smallness of the means, the immensity of the result are the three measures of a man’s genius, who would dare humanly compare a great man of modern history with Mohammad?

The most famous have only moved weapons, laws, empires; they founded, when they founded anything, only material powers, often crumbling before them. This one not only moved armies, legislations, empires, peoples, dynasties, millions of men over a third of the inhabited globe; but he also moved ideas, beliefs, souls. He founded upon a book, of which each letter has become a law, a spiritual nationality embracing people of all languages and races; and made an indelible imprint upon this Muslim nation, for the hatred of false gods and the passion for the God, One and Immaterial.

Philosopher, orator, apostle, legislator, warrior conqueror of ideas, restorer of a rational dogma for a cult without imagery, founder of twenty earthly empires and of a spiritual empire, this is Mohammad.

Of all the scales by which one measures human grandeur, which man has been greater…”

- Extract from Alphonse de Lamartine's Histoire de la Turquie, (1854). translation from French, Kenza. my appreciation to Kenza for sharing this.

:: Alphonse de Lamartine (1790-1869) was a French poet and writer revered by many. He is considered one of the first “Romantic” poets, said to be an inspiration to many after him.
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O Beloved Soul of the Two Realms | in Sufiana Abida's Voice

Song from the soul, for the soul :: you gotto hear this song to appreciate completely. The voice, the music composition, the tone and all are simply out of this world. click here to listen.


close translation in english


O Beloved Soul of the two realms - Your Glory is something else!
Emerge from the veil, for You are something else!

The eloquence of those of verse and letters is one thing
The tongue cleansed with the waters of Kausar is something else!

The meanings in Your manners what can one understand
What is concealed is something, and revealed is something else!

Not a sigh heard, but a thousand times the pain climaxed
The state of the broken hearted is something else!

The content of what I said was something else - alas!
The message of the Messenger is something else!

It's not poem, it's truths of the Heart that I tell
Whatever anyone say, what I know is something else!

origianl in urdu

Aye jaan e do alam teri shaan aur hi kuch hai
Parde se nikal aa ke gumaan aur hi kuch hai
Kuch aur hai arbaab e sukhan ka lab o lahja
Dhoi hui Kausar se zabaan aur hi kuch hai
Mahfhum adaao ka teri kya koi samjhe
Batim mein hai kuch aur bayaan aur hi kuch hai!
Uff tak na kare mooh ko hazaar aaye kaleja
Tute hue dil walon ki aan aur hi kuch hai
Mahfhum meri baaton ka kuch aur hi tha afsos
Uljha hua Qasid ka bayaan aur hi kuch hai!
Ghalzalein nahi mein dil ki kahi kahta hun ae Shaad
Auron ka hai kuch aur, mera gumaan aur hi kuch hai

- Shad Azimabadi

"I do believe that no colour is darker than the colour of Sufi music and no intoxication is stronger. It is as if I was born to sing this." - Abida Parveen. credit
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