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Famous Like Me > Writer > R > Jalaluddin Muhammad Rumi

Profile of Jalaluddin Muhammad Rumi on Famous Like Me

Name: Jalaluddin Muhammad Rumi  
Also Know As:
Date of Birth: 30th September 1207
Place of Birth: Khorassan, Afghanistan
Profession: Writer
From Wikipedia, the free Encyclopedia
Mawlana Rumi

Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Rumi (Arabic: جلال الدين محمد رومي) or Jalal ad-Din Muhammad Balkhi مولانا جلال الدين محمد بلخى (September 30, 1207 – December 17, 1273 CE) (also known as Mawlawi or Mawlana, meaning our guide or our lord in Arabic and Persian, or Mevlana meaning our guide in Turkish) was a Persian Muslim jurist, theologian, poet and Sufi mystic, who was born in Balkh (then a city of the Greater Khorasan province of Persia (Iran), now part of Afghanistan) and died in Konya (in present-day Turkey, then within the Seljuk Empire's territory). His birth place and native tongue points towards a Persian heritage. He also wrote his poetry in Persian, and is read widely in Iran and Afghanistan where the language is spoken. Yet, he is adored to such a degree that citizens of the modern Turkey, Pakistan, and India sometimes consider him one of their own.

When the Mongols invaded Central Asia, his father (Baha'al din Veled) set out to Konya, Anatolia within the westernmost territories of Seljuk Empire. Rumi was 18 years old at that time. Rumi was sent to Damascus and Aleppo to obtain religious education. His father became the head of a Madrassah (religious school) and when his father died Rumi succeeded him at the age of 25. He was trained in the religious and mystical doctrines by Syed Burhan al-Din but it was his meeting with the dervish Shams Tabriz that changed his life completely. Rumi spent most of his later years of life in Anatolia and also completed his masterpiece there. He died on December 17, 1273 in Konya in present day Turkey; Rumi was laid to rest beside his father, and a splendid shrine was erected over his tomb. He played a big role in the history of converting Orthodox Anatolia (Asia-minor) to Islam.

Teachings of Rumi

A page of a copy circa 1503 of the "Diwan-e Shams-e Tabriz-i"

The general theme of his thoughts, like that of the other mystic and Sufi poets of the Persian literature, is essentially about the concept of Tawheed (unity) and union with his beloved (the primal root) from which/whom he has been cut and fallen aloof, and his longing and desire for reunity.

I am (only) the house of your beloved,
not the beloved (herself):
true love is for the treasure,
not for the coffer (that contains it).
The (real) beloved is that one who is unique,
who is your beginning and end.
When you find him,
you will not remain in expectation(of anything else):
he is both the manifest and also the mystery.
He is the lord of states of feeling,
not dependent on any state;
month and year are slaves to that Moon.
When he bids the "state,"
it does his bidding;
when he wills,he makes body (become) spirit.
Mathnawi III, 1417-1424

Major works

Rumi's major work is Masnavi-ye Manavi (Spiritual Couplets), a six-volume poem regarded by many Sufis as second in importance only to the holy Qur'an. In fact, the Masnawi is often called the "Qur'an-e Farsi" (The Qur'an in Persian). It 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 Tabriz-i (The Works of Shams of Tabriz - named in honor of Rumi's great friend and inspiration, the dervish Shams), comprising some 40,000 verses. Both works are among the most significant in all of Persian literature. It is believed by some that Shams was murdered by disciples of Rumi who were jealous of his relationship with Shams (also spelt Shems).

Fihi Ma Fih is composed of Rumi's speeches on different subjects. Rumi himself did not prepare or write these discourses. They were recorded by his son Sultan Valad or some other disciple of Rumi and put together as a book. Some of the discourses are addressed to Muin al-Din Parvane. Some portions of it are commentary on Mesnevi.

Majalis-i Sab-a contains seven sermons (as the name implies) given in seven different assemblies. As Aflaki relates, after Sham-i Tabrizi, Rumi gave sermons at the request of notables, especially Salah al-Din Zarqubi.


Rumi's adorned tomb in Konya, Turkey

Rumi's importance transcends national and ethnic borders. Speakers of the Persian language in Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan see him as one of their most significant classical poets and an influence to many poets through history. He has also had a great influence on Turkish literature throughout the centuries. His poetry forms the basis of much classical Iranian and Afghan music. Contemporary classical interpretations of his poetry are made by Muhammad Reza Shajarian (Iran), Shahram Nazeri (Iran) and Ustad Mohammad Hashem Cheshti (Afghanistan). To many modern Westerners, his teachings are one of the best introductions to the philosophy and practice of Sufism. Pakistan's National Poet, Muhammad Iqbal (November 9, 1877-April 21, 1938) was also inspired by Rumi's works and considered him to be his spiritual leader and addressed him as Pir Rumi in his poems (pir literally means old, but in sufi/mystic context, it means guide, teacher, master, guru.)


  1. ^  Transliteration of Arabic script into English varies. One common rendering of Rumi's name into English reads: Mowlana Jalaluddin Rumi. The usual brief reference to him is simply, Rumi.

This content from Wikipedia is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Jalaluddin Muhammad Rumi