Why does Rumi say, that when you “lose yourself”, you find contentment, sturdiness, joy, the vitality of spring and companionship with the beloved; whereas when you “don’t lose yourself”, you feel sadness, weakness, wretchedness, autumnal lassitude and separation from the beloved?
He may be using the truth of paradox to convey the truth behind desire. Our natural state is bliss, peace, and love — we are continually trying to return to that state. Unfortunately, we take on roles and identities that require fulfillment within the world: sex, relationships, substances, career, children, entertainment, etc. This reminds me of a poem written by Thich Nhat Hanh that ends with “being someone, anyone at all, is to suffer.” All of our “someones” like to pretend that they are permanent and real, and they look for proof of permanence and solidity in a world that is constantly changing and completely unpredictable. Hence, suffering and restlessness. Rumi tells us to lose the person, the identity, the fictitious sense of self and be with what is. “What is” is peaceful, golden, powerful, sweet and entirely fulfilling. When we are one with what is, rest comes.
Of course our friend Osho agrees: “Don’t seek, don’t search, don’t ask, don’t knock, don’t demand – relax. If you relax, it comes. If you relax, it is there. If you relax, you start vibrating with it. we so desperately long for.”