Oct 01 2008

Khwaja Abdullah Ansari – The Beauty of Oneness

Published by at 9:34 am under Ivan's Story,Poetry

The Beauty of Oneness
by Khwaja Abdullah Ansari

English version by A.G. Farhadi

Any eye filled with the vision of this world
      cannot see the attributes of the Hereafter,
Any eye filled with the attributes of the Hereafter
      would be deprived of the Beauty of Oneness.

— from Munajat: The Intimate Invocations, by Sheikh Ansari / Translated by A. G. Farhadi

/ Photo by Mayr /

I’ve always been sensitive to key events in society. Something about that collective mental and emotional focus has always hit a sensitive nerve in me. I tend to feel major upheavals in my own personal energies.

For example, in 2001 I was living in Hawaii. When the attacks of September 11th hit in New York and Washington DC, it was morning for most of the US, but it was the middle of the night for me in Hawaii. I woke up at about 3:00AM, unable to sleep after having had nightmares about conflicts in the Middle East. I got up, paced around the house and, when I realized I couldn’t fall back asleep, I turned on the television. I flipped to a news station — just in time to see the second plane hit the World Trade Center.

My system feels, at times, like a Richter scale for the planet. That sensitivity can be debilitating at times, but also a source of insight and a reminder of how interconnected we all are.

Naturally, I’ve had lots of reason to feel further global agitations since then, given the American invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq, and the many horrors that have resulted. I can, of course, list several other major political and environmental disasters, and bubbling tensions. That internal needle of mine has gotten jumpy in recent years.

So I thought I should at least take a moment to say something about the current financial concerns in the world. I’ve certainly felt it. The financial crisis is not just a blip that will be forgotten in a couple of months. The problems are deep rooted and the current instability has been brewing for some time. That’s not the most reassuring thing to say, but that’s what I see.

I know how frightened, even traumatized many people are feeling right now. But it is so important to keep things in perspective. No matter how events play out, remember that the fundamentals of life are dependable and rock solid. The basic purpose of your life won’t change. Whether you have a lot of money or are struggling to pay bills, our real job day-to-day is still to be kind and compassionate and to deepen our awareness. When you see need, help if you can. That guideline doesn’t change.

In other words, the things that are truly important in life, our reasons for being here at all, they aren’t affected in the slightest. We can even say we are being given even greater opportunity to challenge ourselves and express our purpose in life.

One more opportunity to expand our vision beyond the merely tangible, and also beyond the lovely escape of a Hereafter, and finally recognize the Beauty of Oneness everywhere — and then to build society based upon that vision.


Khwaja Abdullah Ansari, Khwaja Abdullah Ansari poetry, Muslim / Sufi poetry Khwaja Abdullah Ansari

Afghanistan (1006 – 1088) Timeline
Muslim / Sufi

Sheikh Khwaja Abdullah Ansari, Sheikh Ansari Jabir ibn ‘Abdullah al-Ansari, also known as Ansari of Herat, was born in Herat, in western Afghanistan.

Some of Sheikh Ansari’s works include Kashf al-Asrar “Unveiling of the Secrets” (Commentary of the Qur’an), Tabaquat al-Sufiyya (The Generations of the Sufis),  “Munajat” (Intimate Invocations) which is incorporated into the Kashf al-Asrar and in the Tabaqat.  

Khwaja Abdullah Ansari died in Herat the year 1088, and his burial place in Herat is still a place of pilgrimage for thousands of Sufis and the faithful every year.

More poetry by Khwaja Abdullah Ansari

9 responses so far

9 Responses to “Khwaja Abdullah Ansari – The Beauty of Oneness”

  1. Patriciaon 01 Oct 2008 at 12:16 pm


  2. Sam /Zahidon 01 Oct 2008 at 12:42 pm

    Very sensitive and well chosen indeed, this entry that marks the celebrations of Eid &
    the Jewish New Year. You and I share a poetic sensibility AND an inner clock.
    On Sept. 11th, 2001, I woke up with the earplugs of my walkman still on from having fallen asleep while listening to the baseball game the night before. The same radio station was broadcasting the second tower having just been hit. Minutes later, I heard the live broadcast of the collapse of both towers. A wakeup call indeed.
    Later that afternoon I purchased a Moroccan fountain as an affirmation of what I know this great culture of Islam to be. Seven years later, we still all are processing this terrible event together with our terrible response.
    Your poetic choices provide us the space to reflect ourselves in this great pool of wisdom.
    In deep thanks,
    Sam / Z

  3. Chandiraon 01 Oct 2008 at 4:23 pm

    Great post! Yes, what a great vision to build things on. We aren’t in any way separate, I have also had plenty of moments of feeling that Oneness, not always comfortable, when things like 911 happen..

    Thank you. I’ve bookmarked your site now, after being sent here by Julie K. 🙂

  4. Aristideson 01 Oct 2008 at 7:11 pm

    Dear Ivan

    It's been some time I want to thank you for your spiritual and artistic work and now today's commentary gives me the opportunity. From Monday to Tuesday me my mother and at least four of my friends have been feeling sick and when my mother asked me what is going on the answer that came to me was "the collective unconscious of mankind is being transformed". With the spread of secularism in late 18th century the spirituality, peace and joy mirrored in the music -from Baroque to Mozart- gave way to Beethoven's tortured soul then Chopin's melancholy and in the 20th century outright fragmentation and agony eg the hard to stomach works of Stravinsky. I hope this transition is our souls reclaming peace and joy. Maybe we are about to face material hardship but on a spiritual level I think the angels are celebrating in heaven!

    Take care and thanks


  5. Jamshed Aryanon 01 Oct 2008 at 10:14 pm

    Greetings to all

    One of the best and distinguishing factors of Sufis is they do not care about This world or hereafter, hell or paradise all they care is to see there beloved on the day of judgement. This poem reflects the universality of SUFI thought. I am an Afghan and I belong to the region where Shiakh Abdullah Ansari lived and died and buried, amongst the Afghans he is known as ( Pir-e-Herat) Saint of Herat( Herat is the Southern Afghan city).

    This poem on a very good occassion Eid really shows great spirituality.

    Jamshed Aryan

  6. Carrieon 02 Oct 2008 at 1:15 pm

    I am very moved my your selections Ivan and by the depth of your sharing. I too am a being who feels things in my body way before I know what is occurring in the world. I have rarely heard another describe this as you have and in a way that totally resonates for me. It is a gift and at times feels like too much to bare. Thankfully I am finding the greater ground to hold all this and a greater surrender to the movements of the universe. Thank You for your offerings and for the nurturing they give.

  7. salamon 02 Oct 2008 at 7:09 pm

    Dear Ivan,
    The base for oneness is, the only truth, reality, to which most of us are shy or reluctant to accept.The ultimate merger,union, what we call and know as DEATH.If we accept that as the base to start life, most of our action and decisions would be different to what we have.

    they say.
    I speak of their feelings,their emotions.
    i tell them what am told,
    when i leave this body of mine,
    and travel through the stars,
    meet angles.
    I know,
    I got to go, and
    setting me on fire,
    or throwing in ditch,
    are non but my kins,
    i know that all,
    but still.
    I will kill,lie,plunder.
    in the name of, my children, religion, pleasures,
    if non, than countrymen.

  8. Sandra Ron 09 Sep 2009 at 10:01 am

    Hi! I was surfing and found your blog post… nice! I love your blog. 🙂 Cheers! Sandra. R.

  9. Kristle Rodemeyeron 31 Dec 2010 at 1:18 am

    Awsome info and straight to the point. I am not sure if this is truly the best place to ask but do you folks have any thoughts on where to hire some professional writers? Thanks in advance 🙂

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