Moulana Muhammad Jalaluddin Rumi

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Rumi was born in Balkh, Afghanistan, on 30 September 1207. In 1220 when the area came under the threat of Mongol invasion Rumi’s father Bahauddin, who was a scholar and a Sufi, took his family out of Balkh and moved via present day Iran and Iraq to finally settled in Karaman near Konya, in western Turkey. That part of the world was then known as Rum (Arabic for Rome) since the western part of it was still under the Byzantine Eastern Roman Empire. Jalaluddin’s last name Rumi is derived from Rum (lit. Rumi=Roman in Arabic).
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When his father Bahauddin passed away, Rumi succeeded him in 1231 as the professor of religious sciences. Rumi was only 24 years old but was already considered as an accomplished scholar in religious and social sciences.
In about 1244 a Sufi dervish Shamsuddin of Tabrez, arrived in Konya and paid a visit to Rumi. That visit would change the life of Rumi forever.
In one of his couplets, Rumi says:


Maulvi Har Giz Na Shud Maula-e-Rum
Ta Ghulam-e-Shams Tabrezi Na Shud
(translation)
Rumi was not a scholar
Until he became the desciple of Shams Tabrezi


Shams Tabrezi was a spiritual wanderer. He came to Konya 1244, but could not remain there for more than one year, as an attempt was made on his life. Shams soon left for good and Rumi saw his Master for the last time. He was so grieved at the separation that he withdrew himself entirely from the world, became a dervish, and founded the order of dervishes, which still exists in Turkey and in the US.
Rumi’s major work is Masnavi-e Ma’nvi, a six-volume poem, which is considered by many to be one of the greatest works of mystical poetry. Rumi’s other major work is the Diwan-e Shams-e Tabrezi, comprising around 40,000 verses. Both works are among the most significant in all of Farsi (Persian) literature.
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Rumi died on December 16, 1273 at the age of 66 in Konya.
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