In this program, I connect a recent personal experience with the two mystical concepts of ” being trapped in oneself,” and “being free from oneself.” I’ll discuss Rumi’s comparison of these two key states of awareness, then, share another poem explaining the lover/beloved attempt to reach that freedom in a rare game of polo!
In this episode I conclude my discussion of Rumi and the concept of God focusing on our inner connection with the divine presence which he describes as “the sun,” “the truth,” and “the friend” among other things. In his view, God is not this exacting teacher or prosecutor. He/she/it is the sea to which the waves of our existence are rolling. Once there, no one can tell the wave from the sea, not even ourselves.
In this episode I speak about the concept of God in Rumi’s poetry and the various manifestations that it finds. Is God a person, an energy, a sense of joy, a pervasive light, a force of goodness? Where is he/she/it? Is he in us, is he us knocking on door to get inside a room which already belongs to us?
In this second episode of a duo focused on handling disappointment , Rumi encourages us to step back from our daily personal problems to see the bigger world. This silent world will speak if you lower your voice and listen. Think of it as a mirror. What you see in others, is a reflection of yourself. Think of it as a mountain. It echos your own voice.
This is the first of two episodes on Rumi’s approach to disappointment in life. In this program I start with his general comments on the the interrelation between hope and disappointment, the sources of the pain caused by disappointment, and the best tools to help us rise above it which he calls “your wings.” In the next program I will bring you Rumi’s more in-dept approach to causes of disappointment and ways to handle them.
With this episode, I start a discussion of Rumi and the environment. Citing his lyrics, I point to his reverence for nature as a site of the presence of the Divine. Seeking the Koranic description of God in a green tree, Rumi views our natural habitat as beautiful, lively, and closely connected with us. What we need to do is to discover it as a source of inspiration, and to preserve it for the generations who will follow.
This program focuses on what Rumi says about the concepts of death and dying. I start with his definition of life itself and move on to the end of life as we see and experience. I make an effort to minimize philosophical debate and stay focused on his attention to the human experience.
In this program, I elaborate on the significance of the notion of change in Rumi’s lyric poetry. If things stay the same, life can turn into a kind sleep with little to explore. New encounters, even if challenging, are opportunities for learning and growth. That is why love says to human beings: “If you make a hundred houses like the bees, I’ll make you homeless like a fly.” Traveling in search of a home could be a destination.
For Rumi, everything in the world is a sign pointing to the presence of the sacred. If we miss one sign, another will come our way. As, in the past week, many people celebrated the beginning of the spring as their new year, Nowruz, we in this program look at the way, in Rumi’s poetry, spring breeze brings life after the cold winter.
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