The Pupil asks; the Master answers

by Farid ud-Din Attar

English version by Raficq Abdulla
Original Language Persian/Farsi

'Why was Adam driven from the garden?'
The pupil asked his master. 'His heart was hardened
With images, a hundred bonds that clutter the earth
Chained Adam to the cycle of death following birth.
He was blind to this equation, living for something other
Than God and so out of paradise he was driven
With his mortal body's cover his soul was shriven.
Noblest of God's creatures, Adam fell with blame,
Like a moth shriveled by the candle's flame,
Into history which taught mankind shame.
Since Adam had not given up his heart
To God's attachment, there was no part
For Adam in paradise where the only friend
Is God; His will is not for Adam to imagine and bend.'

-- from The Conference of the Birds: The Selected Sufi Poetry of Farid ud-Din Attar, Translated by Raficq Abdulla

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Recommended Books: Farid ud-Din Attar

Poetry for the Spirit: Poems of Universal Wisdom and Beauty The Drunken Universe: An Anthology of Persian Sufi Poetry Perfume of the Desert: Inspirations from Sufi Wisdom Music of a Distant Drum: Classical Arabic, Persian, Turkish & Hebrew Poems The Conference of the Birds
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The Pupil asks; the