No end to the journey

by Mevlana Jelaluddin Rumi

English version by Robert Bly
Original Language Persian/Farsi

No end, no end to the journey
no end, no end never
how can the heart in love
ever stop opening
if you love me,
you won't just die once
in every moment
you will die into me
to be reborn

Into this new love, die
your way begins
on the other side
become the sky
take an axe to the prison wall,
escape
walk out like someone
suddenly born into color
do it now

-- from Secret Language: Rumi A Celebration in Song (Music CD), by Ramananda

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Commentary by Ivan M. Granger

No end, no end to the journey

That line becomes a rhythmic chant on Ramananda's wonderful CD "Secret Language."

no end, no end never

And, my favorite--

how can the heart in love
ever stop opening


A full life, a complete spiritual practice can be found in that question.

But why all this death imagery?

Into this new love, die
your way begins
on the other side


Why does every spiritual tradition speak of dying and death in such a favorable light? Do all mystics have some secret death wish?

In deep ecstasy, the sense of individuality, the sense of "I" thins and can completely disappear. Though you still walk and breathe and talk, there is no "you" performing these actions. The separate identity, the ego, disappears, to be replaced by a vast, borderless sense of Self.

It is this experience, this complete loss of the limited sense of self, that is the death so eagerly sought by mystics throughout time. This is the death that leads to new life...

in every moment
you will die into me
to be reborn


That limited sense of self is the prison we must break free from.

take an axe to the prison wall,
escape


Suddenly, the walls that kept you contained and carefully defined drop to the ground -- and there you stand a radiant being whose boundaries are no longer perceived in terms of flesh or memory. In this new freedom, you are alive in a way you never imagined before, and everything you perceive is part of that life.

walk out like someone
suddenly born into color
do it now



Recommended Books: Mevlana Jelaluddin Rumi

Poetry for the Spirit: Poems of Universal Wisdom and Beauty Perfume of the Desert: Inspirations from Sufi Wisdom Music of a Distant Drum: Classical Arabic, Persian, Turkish & Hebrew Poems Open Secret: Versions of Rumi The Way of Passion: A Celebration of Rumi
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