Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Trying to Stay Awake

The Sufis have a kinda slogan..."we're asleep in this world"...or something like that...brb...



by Rumi

First he appeared in the realm inanimate;

Thence came into the world of plants and lived

The plant-life many a year, nor called to mind

What he had been; then took the onward way

To animal existence, and once more

Remembers naught of what life vegetive,

Save when he feels himself moved with desire

Towards it in the season of sweet flowers,

As babes that seek the breast and know not why.

Again the wise Creator whom thou knowest

Uplifted him from animality

To Man's estate; and so from realm to realm

Advancing, he became intelligent,

Cunning and keen of wit, as he is now.

No memory of his past abides with him,

And from his present soul he shall be changes.

Though he is fallen asleep, God will not leave him

In this forgetfulness. Awakened, he

Will laugh to think what troublous dreams he had.

And wonder how his happy state of being

He could forget, and not perceive that all

Those pains and sorrows were the effect of sleep

And guile and vain illusion.

So this world

Seems lasting, though 'tis but the sleepers' dream;

Who, when the appointed

Day shall dawn, escapes

From dark imaginings that haunted him,

And turns with laughter on his phantom griefs

When he beholds his everlasting home.

R. A. Nicholson



Starting out on the evening walkabout behind the Cabin, I was asked...well...it was 'Hello, how are you doing?"...the usual greeting!...and I answered...'Trying to stay awake!"....and I meant it literally...as I had just woke up from a nap...and felt like curling up some more!....but on the walk about I got to thinking....the 'close observation of Nature' effort is like trying to stay awake...awake to Nature inspite of all the hullabaloo!...and I recollected the Sufi slogan...but hadn't seen Rumi's bit I find tonight!...which is knockdown...

quote again...

Remembers naught of what life vegetive,
Save when he feels himself moved with desire
Towards it in the season of sweet flowers,
As babes that seek the breast and know not why.


but let me get the 'sleep' bit I'm more familiar with...


Buddha founded his Path on the human fact of suffering. Islam gives the basic situation in which we find ourselves a slightly different interpretation: man in his ordinary state of consciousness is literally asleep ("and when he dies he wakes," as Mohammad said). He lives in a dream, whether of enjoyment or suffering - a phenomenal, illusory existence. Only his lower self is awake, his "carnal soul." Whether he feels so or not, he is miserable. But potentially the situation can be changed, for ultimately man is not identical with his lower self. (The Prince of Balkh, Ibrahim Adham, lost in the desert while hunting, chased a magic stag, which turned on him and asked, "Were you born for this?") Man's authentic existence is in the Divine; he has a higher Self, which is true; he can attain felicity, even before death ("Die before you die," said the Prophet). The call comes: to flight, migration, a journey beyond the limitations of world and self.

Introduction to the Sufi Path
by Peter Lamborn Wilson



That's taken from the top of the search...but let me find Shah's take...brb...


This is a 1972 mass market pb printing from Penguin in very good condition with no marks other than light stains on page edges. Aptly titled, "Reflections," is a collection of fables, aphorisms, and statements that challenge the conditioned, assumptive manner we use when thinking of and interacting with others and ourselves. These reflections-whose effect is similar to being shaken out of sleep-offer insight on many levels.



there should be a better bit somewhere...brb...oh...here's a good long tale that address the question..."What do the Sufi's mean..."To be in the world but not of it.""...


But it's a theologon's argument...and isn't going to stop global warming...where is that other Sufi slogan!..."Trust in God...and tie up your donkey!"


‘Trust in God, but tie your camel first.’ The economic organization of the trans-Saharan slave trade between the fourteenth and nineteenth centuries...


or the guest workers in Arabia...

that slogan attributed to Mohammed gets plugged into a lot of things..

here's a whole list of 'camel' proverbs...


well...nothing much can fit into a nutshell...brb...


The central concept in Sufism is love. Dervishes—the name given to initiates of sufi orders—believe that love is a projection of the essence of God to the universe.They believe that God desires to recognize beauty, and as if one looks at a mirror to see oneself, God looks at himself within the dynamics of nature. This is substantiated using the famous Hadith Qudsi (extra-Qur'anic utterance of God): "I was a hidden treasure, and I wanted to be known, so I created Creation." Since they believe that everything is a reflection of God, ...



I suppose I can curl up with that one!


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