Rumi’s Love of Humanity

(Notes from Sefik Can Efendi, 1998)


After Rumi has discovered his self and sensed what was in him he saw in others what was in him, too. This way he unified the Love of Allah with the Love of Humanity. He came to the conclusion that to love human beings is to love Allah. When read carefully, the following couplet makes it quite clear actually to whom Rumi’s infinite love of Shems was.

Shems of Tebriz is a pretext. In fact, we are the one peerless in beauty, the one peerless in boons and favor.
(Divan-i Kebir, v. 3, no. 1576)


In another poem, Rumi advises us to appreciate the value of each other and to love each other because we love our loved ones not because of their physical beings but because of Allah.

Come, come, let us appreciate each other, know the value of each other. Because you never know we might be suddenly separated. Now that our Prophet has said: ‘The believer is the mirror of the believer.’ why are we turning our face from the mirror? Grudges and hates darken the friendship and injure the heart. Why don’t we rip off and throw away the grudges from the heart?
(Divan-i Kebir, v. 3, no. 1535)


Come, join us. We are Lovers of God, you join us so we open you the doors of the garden of love. Sit in our house as a shadow we are the neighbors of God’s sun. We are invisible to the eye, just as is the soul, we have no trace or mark, just as the love of the lovers. But our signs are in you and in front of you because we are both hidden as well as apparent just as the soul. Whatever you may be talking of look further and higher and even beyond that because we are beyond the beyonds. You are like water, but you remain in a hole, you are imprisoned. Open up a way for yourself so you may join us, because we are a flood flowing towards God.
(Divan-i Kebir, v. 3, no. 1540)


Come so we may speak to each other from spirit to spirit, talk to each other hidden from eyes and ears. Let us laugh without lips and teeth just as the rose garden. Let us discourse without lips and mouth just as the thought. Let us tell the secret of the world completely with our mouth closed at the level of “Akl-i Evvel” and in the awareness of God’s existence. Nobody talks to themselves with a loud voice, since we are all one, let us call out to each other from our hearts without mouths or lips. How can you say to your hand ‘Hold!’ Is that hand yours? Since our hands are one let us talk about this issue. Hands and feet are aware of the state of the heart. Let us make conversation with our tongue being silent and our hearts vibrating.
(Divan-i Kebir, v. 6, no. 3020)


Rumi’s love of humanity is infinite. Starting with the ancient Greek and Latin poets, take all the classical poets, dramatic writers, philosophers and sociologists of the West, none has a love for humanity that Rumi feels and lets his readers feel. Shame on those who don’t know and understand Rumi and who don’t count him as a classical poet.

Come, come, get closer. Till when is this banditness going to continue? Since you are I and I am you, what is this ‘us and them’? We are God’s holy light, we are God’s mirror. So why are we struggling with each other? Why is one light running away from another light so much? We, all human beings, are gathered like a body in the being of a mature human. But why are we squint-eyed? Although we are limbs of the same body why do the rich look down on the poor? Why does the right hand look down on the left hand of the same body? Since both of them are hands of your body what is the meaning of lucky and unlucky on the same body? We, all the human beings, are in reality all one essence. Our minds are one, and our heads are one. But we have been seeing one as two due to the curved heavens. Come, liberate yourself from this selfishness and reconcile with everybody and be nice to people. As long as you are in you, you are a grain, a particle. But when you mix and unite with others, then you become an ocean, a mine. Every human being carries the same soul but the bodies are in hundreds of thousands. Similarly, there are countlessly many almonds in the world, but there is the same oil in each of them. There are many tongues and dialects in this world but the meaning of all of them are the same. Water put in different containers unite when the containers are broken and start to flow together as one stream. If you understand what the unity (tevhid) means, if you attain unity and if you rip and throw away meaningless words and thoughts, the spirit sends news to those whose eyes of the hearts are open and tells them the truth.
(Divan-i Kebir, v. 6, no. 3020)


In the above examples, Rumi’s thoughts on the love of humanity are illustrated. Rumi will whisper many secrets to the ears of those who carefully read these and reflect on them thoroughly.