|He is neither this nor that: |
he is simple (pure and free from attributes of self):
he has placed your image before you.
When the discourse reached this point,
it closed its lips;
when the pen reached this point,
it broke to pieces.
Close thy lips (0 my soul):
though eloquence is at thy command,
do not breathe a word
and God best knoweth the right way.
0 you who are drunken
with the wine (of love),
you are on the edge of the roof:
sit down or (else) descend,
and peace be with you!
when you enjoy (union with the Beloved),
deem that delightful moment
to be the edge of the roof.
Be trembling for (fear of losing)
the delightful moment:
conceal it like a treasure, do not divulge it.
Lest calamity suddenly befall (your) plighted love,
take heed,go very fearfully into that place of ambush.
The spirit’s fear of loss at the moment of enjoyment
is (the sign of its) departure (descent) from the hidden roof-edge.
If you do not see the mysterious roof-edge, (yet)
the spirit is seeing, for it is shuddering (with fear).
Every sudden chastisement that has come to pass
has taken place on the edge of the turret of enjoyment.
Indeed there is no fall except (on) the edge of the roof:
(take) warning from (the fate of) the people of Noah
and the people of Lot.
“The Mathnawi of Jalalu’ddin Rumi”
Edited and translated by Reynold A. Nicholson
Volume IV, verses 2145-2154
Published by “E.J.W.Gibb Memorial”,
First published 1926, Reprinted 1990.