Sunday, October 26, 2008

Who is She? | my Woman of Sorrow

who is she mysticsaintwho is she
who dwells in my heart?
i wanted her,
but i failed to win her.

i decked her with diamonds
and sang her praises,
a smile shone in her eyes
for a moment,
and then it died.

i have no joy and even she cried,
my woman of sorrow.

i bought her jewel anklets
and adorned her with gold.
i bought her a band
fit for the queen of sheba.
a gleam of gladness flickered in her eyes,
then it died.

i have no joy and even she cried,
my woman of sorrow.

i took her in my arms
and flew her to paradise.
fame and fortune surrounded her,
she conquered the hearts of men.
pride shone in her eyes for a moment,
and then it died.

i have no joy and even she cried,
my woman of sorrow.

days go by and she cries.

tell me what is it that you want?

and she said: 'when will my Lover come?
the One with the Unknown Name,
when will my Lover come,
to me, from your heart?'

- translation of Rabindranath Tagore's Poem by Deepak Chopra
from the CD: Gift of Love II, Oceans of Ecstasy

[>] You may Listen to this wonderful poem here.
[>] Also on Youtube, Woman of Sorrow

commentary | every lover is essentially the face of the Beloved Who is at the same time Faceless and yet veiled behind Every Face. Ibn Arabi said about the realization of the paradox of love: "We are veiled from Thee only through Thee." this poem eloquently speak to that divine mystery that is at the heart of this existence of love. the sufis says, the Divine is both the Lover and Beloved; and also that Axis of Love which gives birth to Lover and Beloved. Al-Wadud is one of the 99 Divine Attributes used in sufi practice to bring the remembrance of the Highest Love, this holy name Al-Wadud points to that all encompassing Reality of Love.

the whole mystery of existence is also based on the Love of a Hidden Lover. in the sacred tradition of mystical islam, the cause of this cosmic existence is summed up in this statements from the hadith qudsi pregnant with many esoteric layers of meaning where God says, "I was a hidden treasure and longed to be known and loved, hence I created everything."

Hafiz says it this way:

An invisible wake was created when God said to His beautiful dead lover, "Be!".
Hafiz, who will understand you if you do not explain that last line?
Well then, I will sing it this way: When God said to illusion, "Be!"

although on the outer level every human being falls in love with a human form, yet unknowingly and relentlessly we are seeking the One Beloved Who dwells in our heart. this longing is installed in our being, thus like all rivers that naturally flow towards ocean, every human being long for a beloved. often time in relationship we are so much caught up with the outer personality and its dynamics that we forget that it is the individual soul that seeks union and everything else is a form that is given for the soul to find an abode.

from that place of being caught up with outside, in this poem Tagore is speaking from the stand point of a lover who seemingly fails to win his beloved. even though every possible worldly needs are met, yet the beloved is missing something somewhere and hence is called 'my woman of sorrow'. the sorrow originates from the primordial longing of human soul. its not the diamond or gold that cures this longing.

'what is it that you want?' finally asks the lover and the answer of union, which is given in the form of a question coming from agony of missing what is real, asks:

when will my Lover come,
the One with the Unknown Name?
when will my Lover come,
to me, from your heart?

the One Beloved with the Unknown Name which dwells in every heart is what every heart falls in love with and falls in love for. its through the uncovering of the true lover, the bliss of love is attained. thus true love is always egoless because on the soul level, bliss state is achieved when there is no ego.

Mechthild of Magdeburg said it so beautifully:

And God said to the soul:
I desired you before the world began.
I desire you now as you desire me.
And where the desires of two come together
There love is perfected.

true love only enters the abode when the ego disappears. else it is an approximation of love or approaching towards love, but not true love. the ever descending good news is, the longing of the Lover with Unknown Name, of Nameless Reality dwells in all human heart. and when the veils of heart is lifted, behold and lo! there the Lover comes!

In Bhagavad Gita, this Lover declares His or Her identity in saying:
"Those who realize true wisdom rapt within this clear awareness see Me as the universe's origin Imperishable. All their words and all their actions issue from the depths of adoration, held in My embrace they know Me as a woman knows her lover.

... I Am always with all beings; I abandon no one. And however great your inner darkness, you are never separate from Me. Let your thoughts flow past you, calmly; keep Me near, at every moment; trust Me with your life, because I Am you, more than you yourself are."

+ Related:

. Feminine Spirituality
. Who do you really love?
. Paradoxes of Love by Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee
. What happens when mirrors fail
. Concept of Love in Sufism
. Meditation on Bhagavad Gita Pin It Now!