Rumi poems - gateway to higher knowledge
Higher knowledge constantly surrounds us. Whether we are receptive to it or not, its influences touch upon our everyday lives. This knowledge is not found in our conceptual mind and intellect, but is mainly revealed through the fine arts and sciences of this world, hidden within architecture, philosophy, literature, as well as nature, religion and poetry.
These more abstract ideas and universal teachings that lie beyond our rational thinking are directed towards our heart and aim to awaken our finer emotions that connect us with the transformative force of meaning.
Poetry is one such powerful influence and can point us towards something eternal, inducing in us a state of ‘self-remembering’. In my own quest, life has taught me in its own unique way to read between the lines of Rumi’s poetry and access the timeless knowledge of transformation that is inconspicuously contained within it. If we truly want to absorb these great ideas, and be nourished by the deeper meaning of Rumi’s poetry, we have to keep the door to our hearts wide open.
The more we mature, the more we acquire, and most of what we acquire along the way only adds to the padding that separates us from what we are in essence. Usually, not very far into our life only our personality keeps growing, whilst our essence (together with everything that has been given to it and is part of our birthright) becomes dormant. This is how the initial undivided nature of our ‘Self’ gradually scatters and splits into a divided Self, full of contradictions and frictions. Some fragments of our divided Self might gather and form a particular preference or interest, whilst other fragments pull us towards a different kind of interest altogether. Those accumulations of fragments can multiply in vast numbers, depending on the intensity of external influences and impressions that act upon us. In time, the external physical world is perceived by us from a more or less chaotic place of internal disorder that forms part of our psychological and mental makeup.
The result is that we rarely see or perceive the outer world for what it is, that is from an objective state of mind, and when it comes to our inner reality we have simply fallen asleep to whatever animates this physical and psychological body.
Let us look at the words of Rumi’s poem more closely.
‘My soul is from elsewhere…’ This simple and profound statement in Rumi’s teachings implies that we are not what we believe ourselves to be, and that we are comprised of something that is distinct from this body. It tells me that I am not ‘one’, and simultaneously points to another possibility of existence that lies beyond my ordinary perception, possibly another modality by which my very existence expresses itself without the requirement of a body/mind/thought unit.
It implies a journey or quest based on asking profoundly different questions, fuelled by a powerful source of inspiration that has left an imprint within the very depth of our being. Something is given or told that leads to a manifestation of sufficient substance or gravitas to override the scattered nature of the Self.
‘I am sure of that…’ reverberates from a place of knowing. The initial inspiration has shifted from knowledge to experience, and the underlying elements of belief and conviction have grown into a depth of knowing that requires no defence. The search itself has come to an end, yet the effort to prevent this new state of knowing from being enveloped by the veil of forgetfulness is far from over.
‘I intend to end up there…’ indicates that a strong ‘want’ has been established that is void of illusion. It acknowledges that the actual ‘knowing’ of how to wake up is very fragile and can be overpowered by a sleep-producing state at any time. Only conscious or inspirational effort will sustain this evolving connection until intent to ‘end up there’ becomes all-encompassing. There are many layers of profound meaning in this particular line, which in actual fact is a step-by-step instruction that explains very clearly how to manifest a real ‘want’ in one’s life.
‘My soul is from elsewhere…’ clearly describes a very significant moment most of us will arrive at in our lifetime. It points towards a situation in which we realise that we are not fulfilling our life’s purpose, creating within us a need to follow our real ‘calling’. This is usually accompanied by a profound sense that the life we have lived, as well as most of our ‘doings’, are leading to a dead end, and does not serve us well any more. All of a sudden we feel like a stranger to what we have established along the way, as well as the way of life we have lived. We really start getting a glimpse of our calling ‘from elsewhere’, which is still partly disguised by the unknown, yet feels encouraging enough to question the way we have lived. That glimpse, or ‘a-ha moment’, combined with a window of time that is somehow full of unsettling unpredictability, is strong enough to take us to the final conclusion that the only way out is change.
‘I am sure of that…’ points to the process of enquiry and exploration we need to undertake to get closer to the realisation of our actual vocation. We have to experiment and gather many facts by digging through the shadows of the unknown to be able to get closer to a clear picture and understanding of our new incentive and objective. This delicate process will gradually lead to actual knowing of our calling to its fullest extent.
‘I intend to end up there…’ shows that one has gathered enough knowledge, understanding and skill, as well as an unwavering determination, to face all the different distractions and opposing forces one is bound to meet along the road. The journey towards our goal is based on the creation of a strong want that is fuelled by the force of meaning, which ultimately will materialise in the objective of the initial intent.
Well, dear reader, I don’t know about your incentive, but I for one intend to end up ‘elsewhere’.
© Alexander Filmer-Lorch 2014