Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), for example, was himself rebuked in the Qur’an for his behavior, reminding us that those he was a mercy to humankind, but like all of humankind, he was susceptible to mistakes and poor judgment at times. But the mission of Prophethood helped him, corrected him, and elevated him.
People therefore attaching themselves to every word of a non-Prophet, as Rumi did with Shams, or as many others do today, to spiritual guides, leads only to heartache. Because while some of what they may say may be good, not all will ever be good or right.
And as they do not have a relationship with an angel, like Gabriel, to protect and correct them, it is inevitable, that no matter how good they may present themselves, their errors and mistakes will be passed onto their disciples.
This is why God has created humankind free, able to think for themselves, able to make their own judgment on what is and isn’t right for them as individuals. What’s good for one person may not be good for another.
Outsourcing a person’s spirituality to another person’s interpretation of faith, when that other person isn’t a Prophet, means that there is no measure or safety net, and the person sacrifices the thing which God gave them, free will and agency, and moves from being obedient to God, to becoming obedient to the opinions and whims of their mentor.
The story of Rumi and Shams reminds us of this exact failing, the search for faith and spirituality is corrupted by handing over a person’s agency to another, even if the intention of both may at one point have been sincere and pure.
Avidly known as America’s best-selling poet and philosopher, what is less known about Rumi is his identify as a Muslim. While the performance doesn’t fully touch on this in detail, it shares glimpses of his Islamic faith, which is refreshing to spot.
Not in the dress, as clothing do not define a person’s faith, rather simply reflects the different styles of the times people live in. Rather, his Muslim identity is touched upon in his journey of life.
The performance was a fitting tribute. A musical score coupled with dance and vocal projections, the medium of our time, used to reflect a story about Rumi, who excelled in the medium of his: thought and appreciation of the diversity of humanity expressed through the painful struggle and learning of life, often portrayed through poetry.
Rumi’s life, like all of our lives, is a journey to seeking and discovering more. At times we seek to go in on ourselves, seeking privacy. But like this universe which is constantly expanding and showcasing the amazing nature of our Creator, we all need to get out there, learn and discover, and know that whatever path we take, will bring us back to our Creator.
So pave one which enriches your soul and lifts you in the most beautiful of ways.Pages: 1 2