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“I have never become less from dying”

Rumi departed earthly life on 5 Jumadi II, 672 A.H (according to the Islamic lunar calendar; Dec 17, 1273 A.D., according to the Christian calendar). His death is referred to by Persians as “vesal”, meaning “union (with the Beloved)”, while in the Mevlevi Sufi tradition, the expression “shab-i aroos” (variously spelled “sheb-i arus”, etc., in transliteration) is used, a phrase meaning “the wedding night” — the night of Rumi’s marriage to the Beloved. (The Sufi tradition of referring to the death of a Sufi saint as “urs” — a wedding — predates Rumi, and is still used in Sufi circles.)

Over the next few days, the Sunlight mailing list will offer poems appropriate to the memory of Molana’s passing from this life, and touching on his teachings on the significance of death. […]

December 18th, 2008|Arts & Culture, Rumi, Sufi poetry, Sufism|5 Comments

The sway of the Bauls:Oblivious minstrels of soul

Out of the Quagmire

“By Ratnadeep Banerji “The sway of the Bauls:Oblivious minstrels of soul” – Organiser – New Delhi, India
Weekly issue: August 17, 2008

Baul etymologically arises from Sanskrit batul or byakul that literally means divinely inane or fervently eager

The Charyapadas (Buddhist hymns) which gave rise to Bengali bear references to the precepts of Baul. It is conjectured that around 6th century AD, Mahaprabhu Chaitanya, culled this esoteric coterie of Bauls as a formal community though the word ‘Baul’ appeared in Bengali texts around 15th century.

Bauls are essentially mystic minstrels hailing from the hinterland of West Bengal and Bangladesh. Baul is not just a music tradition but it’s also a syncretic religious sect out of Vaishnavite Hindus, Sufi Muslims and Hindu tantric sect of the Kartabhajas as well as Tantric Buddhist schools like Sahajia. […]

September 3rd, 2008|Personal|1 Comment