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was born in Afghanistan september 30 th 1207His father, Bahauddin Walad, was a theologian and jurist and a mystic of uncertain lineage.”

“…until the age of thirty-seven [Rumi] was a brilliant scholar and popular teacher. But his life changed forever when he met the powerful wandering dervish, Shams of Tabriz, of whom Rumi said, ‘What I had thought of before as God, I met today in a human being.’ From this mysterious and esoteric friendship came a new height of spiritual enlightenment….”

“On the night of December 5, 1248, as Rumi and Shams were talking, Shams was called to the back door. He went out, never to be seen again. Most likely, he was murdered with the connivance of Rumi’s son, Allaedin; if so Shams indeed gave his head for the privilege of mystical Friendship.”

“When Shams disappeared, Rumi began his transformation into a mystical artist. ‘He turned into a poet, began to listen to music, and sang, whirling around, hour after hour.’”

“The mystery of the Friend’s absence covered Rumi’s world. He himself went out searching for Shams and journeyed again to Damascus. It was there that he realized,

Why should I seek? I am the same as He, His essence speaks through me. I have been looking for myself!

The union became complete. There was full fana, annihilation in the Friend. Shams was writing the poems. Rumi called the huge collection of his odes (ghazals) and quatrains (rubaiyat) The Works of Shams of Tabriz.”

“He died on December 17, 1273.”

The Essential Rumi. Translated by Coleman Barks, with John Moyne, A.J. Arberry, and Reynold Nicholson. Castle Books, 1995, 1997.


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