Tuesday 19 December 2023

A Divine Love story: Mystic Poet Rumi and Shams Tabrizi The Spiritual Sufi Guide of Rumi’s Golden lines. The Sad Ending

According to historians, when Rumi’s assembly was held, the crowd was so large that the surrounding lanes were full of his lovers, but his life changed when Shams Tabrizi the spiritual Sufi a wandering Mystic met with him. Wandering Mystic.


Rumî, who summarized his life in three words, "I was raw, I was cooked, I was burnt", was originally named Muhammad Jalal al-Din.

Lovers don’t finally meet somewhere. They’re in each other all along. 

The Whirling Darvesh in Mahfil e samaa

Mevlana Jalalud-din-Rumi was born on September 30, 1207 in the city of Balkh, which is today in Afghanistan.

Increasing Mongol attacks forced his family to leave Afghanistan, who travelled to Baghdad, Mekkah, and Damascus and finally settled in Konya in Turkey.


Rumi was the son of a renowned Sufi scholar, Sultan-ul-Ulama Baha-ud-Din Walad.

His father died when Rumi was 25 and he inherited a position as teacher at a madrassa (Islamic school). He continued studying Shariah (Islamic law), eventually issuing his own fatwas (legal opinions) and giving sermons in the local Masjids.


Rumi also practiced the basics of Sufi mysticism in a community of dervishes.

Shams' first encounter with Rumi

The Persian poet Rumi meets the great mystic from Tabriz called Shams, the man who will change his life forever.


Rumi, a respected scholar in his thirties, was riding a donkey home from work when: On 15 November 1244, a man in a black suit from head to toe came to the famous inn of Sugar Merchants of Konya.

His name was Shams Tabrizi. He was claiming to be a traveling merchant, but he was looking for something that he was only going to find in Konya. Eventually, he found Rumi, reading next to a large stack of books.


“What are you doing?” Shams asked him. To which Rumi scoffingly replied, “Something you cannot understand.” On hearing this, Shams threw the stack of books into a nearby pool of water.


Rumi hastily rescued the books and to his surprise, they were all dry. Rumi then asked Shams, “What is this?” To which Shams replied, “Mowlana, this is what you cannot understand.” 

Mevlana Jalal-u-ddin Rumi

Some say that Rumi was so overwhelmed that he fainted and fell off the donkey.


Rumi’s eternal thirst for knowledge and truth and Shams’ mysticism is what brought these two great poets together. In Persian, we call them ashiqs, which literally translated means lover


Lovers don’t finally meet somewhere. They’re in each other all along.

“If you find me not within you, you will never find me. For I have been with you, from the beginning of me.”

(Jalaluddin Rumi)


Rumi and Shams soon became inseparable. They spent months together, lost in a kind of ecstatic mystical communion known as “sobhet” — conversing and gazing at each other until a deeper conversation occurred without words. 

There was no room for Shams in Rumi's social circle. Rumi was the number one citizen of that region; he was even above the emir (the ruler), since the emir was one of his students. Yet Rumi managed to use all his wit to keep Shams around as long as possible even by offering him an extremely hard to ignore gift.


Shams disappeared as unexpectedly as he had arrived.

After receiving repeated threats Shams decides to leave town. So, the first association between Rumi and Shams ends at this point. Soon after, Rumi falls into a deep state of grief.


Rumi puts out reward notices for any news of Shams.

Not long after, news arrives that Shams has been spotted in Damascus (in today's Syria). Rumi immediately orders a caravan of gifts on horseback and sends his eldest son Sultan Walad to locate Shams and beg him to come back.


Sultan Walad finds Shams in Damascus as reported and upon meeting of Shams falls on his knees and begs him to return. He tells Shams that his father is dying. He says everyone is sorry.


Rumi's household, his friends, his students, the towns people and even the merchants, they are all sorry that they have caused any discomfort for Shams.


Shams agrees to return. Sultan Walad places Shams on horseback, but he himself walks all the way back to Konya out of respect. 

The scouts bring news of Shams' arrival early to Konya and the whole town rejoices. For them the life of their master Rumi was more precious than petty bickering about social class and vulgar tongue of this wandering dervish.


Shams is brought back into Konya with much fanfare. After all Rumi's health and well-being was worth more than social boundaries.


In the past they were like a disciple and teacher, but now they loved each other as equals.


One account says, “No one knew who was lover and who the beloved.” 

Jealousies arose again and some men began plotting to get rid of Shams.

It only took a couple of weeks for a sense of guilt and despair to overcome Rumi's family and by extension their friends and townspeople.


People were saying we should have waited a couple of more months, our master Rumi would have certainly forgotten Shams.

The threats against Shams start a new.This time, Rumi decides to legitimize Shams' presence in his home.


Rumi marries his very young step daughter Kimia Khatoon to Shams.

Rumi, after the passing of his first wife took on a second wife, who was a widow and had a very young daughter named Kimia Khatun. Kimia was a princess of a girl and apparently was quite beautiful. She was brought up in a very cultured, respected and wealthy household.


Kimia had a close relationship with Rumi's son, Sultan Walad. Whether this special chemistry between the two was romantic and meant to eventually lead to marriage is not made too clear by history.


Rumi wanting to keep Shams around for as long as possible makes him an offer he couldn't refuse--hand of Kimia in marriage.


He was sick of all the death threats and constant harassing of everyone around him to leave master Rumi alone.

Statue of Shams Tabrez

When Rumi announced his decision for Kimia's fate, it sent shockwaves through the region. Rumi potentially multiplied Sham's growing unpopularity.


And the decision not only made the household very unhappy but caused Rumi's youngest son, who most probably was planning marriage with Kimia, fuming.


After the marriage Shams becomes extremely obsessive and possessive of Kimia. He basically keeps her indoors at all times and forbids her to ever leave the house.


Kimia Khatoon dies just a short few months after being married. And death of Kimia in essence brings the end of Shams.


Jealousies arose again and some men began plotting to get rid of Shams.

Bust of Shams Tabrezi in city Khoy of Rn

One winter night, when he was with Rumi, Shams answered a knock at the back door. He disappeared and was never seen again. Many believe that he was murdered.


The honor killing of Shams was considered just and the whole town buried the secret and kept it from Rumi.


Rumi never found out what happened to Shams. He thought his favorite Bird flew off again, but no amount of reward brought any news this time.

While Rumi was waiting for any news of Shams he strongly refused to accept that he was dead.


Rumi waited 40 days and after no news of Shams, he put on a black robe and wore black from then on and proclaimed Shams dead.


The core explanation of Shams and Rumi's relationship is that Rumi without Shams would not have been known to history.


And in the process Rumi becomes a major spiritual master and an artist of truly world-class stature. In the meantime, Shams achieves his dream of a "grandmaster student," and falls in love for the first and only time and pays dearly for it. A love story, a tragedy or a personal necessity?


Rumi grieved when Shams disappeared

During their earlier separation, Rumi had withdrawn into himself, and in his agony he even stopped writing poetry. But now the loss of his beloved Shams ignited a fire in him, producing an outpouring of poetry full of love and longing.

Shams Tabrezi Tomb in Khoy (West Azerbijan a province of Iran)

After this breakthrough, waves of profound poetry flowed out of Rumi. He attributed more and more of his writings to Shams.

Day and night he composed his wonderful poetry. And now it’s available to us in his Mathnavi – an epic poem consisting of some 25,000 rhyming couplets – and his Divan, a collection of about 35,000 poems full of an intoxicated love of God and the deepest longings of the heart.


Rumi grieved deeply. He searched in vain for his friend and lost himself in whirling dances of mourning. One of his poems hints at the emotions:

Dance, when you’re broken open.

Dance, if you’ve torn the bandage off.

Dance in the middle of the fighting.

Dance in your blood.

Dance, when you’re perfectly free.


Rumi danced, mourned and wrote poems until the pressure forged a new consciousness.

“The wound is the place where the Light enters you,” he once wrote. His soul fused with his beloved. They became one: Rumi, Shams and God. He wrote:


Why should I seek? I am the same as he.

His essence speaks through me.

I have been looking for myself.


Mevlana Rumi died in Konya on Sunday, December 17, 1273, at the age of 66. Rumi's body was buried next to the body of his father and a magnificent tomb, the Green Tomb (Kubbe-i Hadra) was erected around it.

The End


Nishant saxena said...

Another perfect write-up engg. maqbool Saab.

Er. Maqbool Akram said...

thanksdear friend for reding thisblog.

Nishant saxena said...

Honoured sir.