You glide between the heart and its casingby Mansur al- Hallaj
English version by Bernard Lewis
Original Language Arabic
You glide between the heart and its casing as tears glide from the eyelid.
You dwell in my inwardness, in the depths of my heart, as souls dwell in bodies.
Nothing passes from rest to motion unless you move it in hidden ways,
O new moon.
|-- from Music of a Distant Drum: Classical Arabic, Persian, Turkish & Hebrew Poems, Translated by Bernard Lewis|
/ Photo by Hans Vink /
Nothing passes from rest to motion unless you move it in hidden ways
This poem beautifully evokes the sense of how, in the sacred state, movement ceases for the individual, though there is not inactivity. All action -- inner and outer -- becomes only an appearance of self-governed movement, when, in reality, it is found to be the natural flowing of the Divine through us. The individual identity only pretends to be directing the movement but, like a gull resting on the ocean waves, it is simply carried along by the moon's tug upon the tide.
Just as we have the rhythm of the heart, so too do we have the flow of the breath until we discover the resting point between the in-breath and the out-breath. When the shuttle on the loom has made its full circuit and pauses just long enough to glimpse the pattern... before it moves again to continue weaving the fabric.