Rumi Moment of the Week — Called Out


This week we’re talking about being called to action, making moves, changing our approach, and increasing the urgency with which we engage in our passionate callings. Of course, Rumi has much to say about these things. I chose this poem because he goes right into the fear we have of leaving the familiar for the unknown journey. This is something that holds me back, and even in this planning stage for appropriate action, I worry if it will all be worth it. Well Rumi says absolutely, for sure, the journey towards true freedom is Good. 

He speaks directly to the feeling of being in an abusive relationship with Samsara (or America if you like) in the very first stanza. It makes me wonder:  What is it about us — we who are willing to be cut down by the inherent suffering of duality although we were born with the faculty to leave it behind? This lifestyle is comfortable, and I certainly enjoyed the momentary fix of satisfaction from the ice cream I ate last night, but it is this very comfort that keeps me from flooding the world with light. 

He speaks to us again towards the end: “leave your complaints and self-pity and death energy.” Rumi is saying that there is no need to discuss the perils of this world because that is a never ending discussion. The world we are taught to consider “real” is made up of rights and wrongs, justice and injustice, love and hate, friends and enemies. That is its nature.  

But YOU are Divine. You are Golden. You are Heaven. 

Rumi gives us the opportunity to consider moving past the limits of what is comfortable, into and beyond the uncomfortable, to become the source of justice and bliss that we have been seeking within the world. 

Full poem below..

That Journeys are Good

If a fir tree had a foot or two like a turtle, or a wing,
Do you think it would just wait for the saw to enter?

You know the sun journeys all night under the earth;
If it didn’t, how could it throw up its flood of light in the east?

And salt water climbs with such marvelous swiftness to the sky.
If it didn’t, how would the cabbages be fed with the rain?

Have you thought of Joseph lately? Didn’t he leave his father in tears, going?
Didn’t he then learn how to understand dreams, and give away grain?

And you, if you can’t leave your country, you could go into yourself, 
And become a ruby mine, open to the gifts of the sun.

You could travel from your manhood into the inner man,
     or from your womanhood into the inner woman —
By a journey of that sort earth became a place where you find gold.

So leave your complaints and self-pity and internalized death-energy.
Don’t you realize how many fruits have already escaped out of sourness into sweetness?

A good source of sweetness is a teacher; mine is named Shams.
You know every fruit grows more handsome in the light of the sun.