The story of Moshgel Gosha

This is the true story of the prophet Moshgel Gosha who saved the life of an innocent prisoner. Many years ago there was an old man by the name of Abdollah who lived in abject poverty. With a broken back and pain in his old hands he went every day to the desert to plant some shrubs in order to to earn some money for his family. This type of life was very hard and bitter for him and his wife. The older Abdollah became, the harder his life became. The wife of Abdollah then formulated an inner intention that every Friday morning before sunrise she would sweep the spot in front of their house and sprinkle some water on…

20 Poems of Hazrat Baba Farid

I’ve acquired “The Couplets of Baba Farid” as translated by Maqbool Elahi when I was in Lahore. The original Punjabi text is also contained in this book. These poems are included in the Guru Granth Sahib, the sacred book of the Sikhs. 1 On the day the body was married to the soul, All the destined breaths were written in a scroll. At the approach of the last breath, The so much heard of angel, brought their counth to death. 2 Rattling bones, this angel takes life away. Tell yourself, while breathing: ‘Destiny holds the sway’. 3 Life is wife and death her husband. Husband takes his wife away. After ‘yes’ to his proposal, How can she hold back the…

Baba Farid

A poorly dressed dervish came to Baba Farid who gave him something and permitted him to depart. The dervish remained standing and asked the shaykh to give him the comb, which he had taken out from its cover and placed on the prayer-carpet. As the comb was not worth anything and had been long used by the shaykh, he did not reply to the request. The dervish began to shout loudly: “If the shaykh gives me this comb, he will receive plenty of blessings.” “Be off”, Baba Farid replied, “and do not disturb me any more. I throw you and your blessings into the river.”

Hafez

This is the first rubâ’i, quatrain, of the Divân of Hâfez and in Persian it sounds thus Joz naqsh-e-to dar nazar nayâmad mâra. Joz kuy-e-to rahgozar nayâmad mâra. Khvâb âr che khosh âmad hameh ra dar ‘uhdat Haqqâ ke be chesham dar nayâmad mâra. Nothing comes in our eyes except Your face. Except Your lane we have no other path to trace. If it is so that as a duty sleep comes joyfully to everyone, But, in truth, our eyes it does not grace. ~ Here are some of his other quatrains. The transcription of the Persian text has been followed by its English translation. Bar gir sharaab tarab angiz o biyaa Penhaan ze raqib-e sefle be-sitez o biyaa Ma-shnav…

The Shaykh’s Cat

During the morning meditation, the cat of a certain khanegah often caused quite some disturbance. So shaykh Ahmad, the resident Sufi Pir, ordered that the cat always had to be tied up when that practice got performed..  After the death of shaykh Ahmad, the cat still got tied up during the morning meditation. When the cat died, another cat was bought in order to “properly” tie it up during the meditation. Several elaborate Sufi handbooks were written in later ages by scholarly followers of shaykh Ahmad about the symbolical meaning of tying up a cat. 

‘Urs Celebrations in Ajmer, India

My wife, and I have travelled to Ajmer to be present at the ‘urs (death anniversary) of our shaykh who expired in 1996. The ‘urs celebration took place on two days, the 26th and 27th of February. The dates are different each year as they are based on the Islamic calendar. Most of the activities took place at the chillah, a hill with the cave wherein Khwaja Mo’inuddin Chishti performed his retreats. After the qul, the closing ceremony, there was a function which started at about 22.00 P.M. at the dargah of Khwaja Mo’inuddin Chishti. About 40 people then walked two times round the shrine of Gharib Nawaz (The Patron of the Poor) as he is also known. Then we…

The Two Kings

There were once two kings, a just and an unjust; and this one had a land abounding in trees and fruits and herbs; but he let no merchant pass without robbing him of his monies and his merchandise, and the traders endured this with patience, by reason of their profit from the fatness of the earth in the means of life and its pleasantness, more by token that it was renowned for its richness in precious stones and gems. Now the just king, who loved jewels, heard of this land and sent one of his subjects thither; and it being told to the unjust king that a merchant was come to his kingdom with much money to buy jewels withal,…

Persian translation of Grandfather’s Oven

تنور پدربزرگ خام بُدم، پخته شدم، سوختم من دیر به کاروانسرای قونیه رسیدم. به همین دلیل صبحِ فردا نزد منیر شاه رفتم. متوجه شدم که کتابی میخواند و کنجکاو بودم بدانم چه میخواند. چند ساعت بعد دوباره او را دیدم. روی نیمکتی رو به روی مسجدی که مقام حضرت شمس تبریزی در آن قرار داشت، نشسته بود. در حال خواندن همان کتاب با جلد قرمز رنگ بود. دیدار سوم در باغ مَرام قونیه اتفاق افتاد. من توصیف این باغ را از اِولیا چَلَبی خوانده بودم و به همین دلیل به آنجا رفته بودم. مردم قونیه برای لذت بردن از زیبایی باغ و آواز پرندگان به آنجا میرفتند. منیر شاه باز هم آن کتاب را میخواند. او متوجه من شد و…

Advice to the disciple

Khwaja Mo’inuddin Chishti has said: “The spiritual disciple should, by earnestly following and obeying the spiritual guide, try to reach the place where the spiritual guide himself becomes the comb of his disciple. It should be taken to heart, that whatever the spiritual guide persuades his disciple to do and to practise is for the benefit of the disciple himself”

Diwaan-e-Mo’in: Ghazal 9

Man yaar toraa daaram o aghyaar namikhaaham Ghair az to ke del bordi deldaar namikhaaham You are my Friend and I don’t want any other. You are my Beloved and I don’t want any other to capture my heart. Khaari ke ze dard-e-to khastast maraa dar del Man khasta-e-aan khaaram golzaar namikhaaham A thorn of pain coming from You has wounded my heart, But I don’t want to replace this wound by any flower. Gar jelwa dehi bar del naqd-e-do jahaan guyam Man ‘aasheq-e-didaaram dinaar namikhaaham If You polish my heart, I’ll pay all the cash of both worlds for it. I love to see You and it is money I don’t want. Serri ke maraa baa tost baa ghair…