I’ve asked Rumi and Heschel to speak to each other – see what they said! – (Juxtaposition 24.12.2012)

Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing,
there is a field.  I’ll meet you there.

When the soul lies down in that grass,
the world is too full to talk about.
Ideas, language, even the phrase each other
doesn’t make any sense.

From Essential Rumi
by Coleman Barks



Heschel said






from another of his books Man is Not Alone Heschel;


The search for reason ends at the shore of the known;
on the immense expanse beyond it only the sense of the ineffable can glide.
It alone knows the route to that which is remote from experience and understanding. 


Neither is amphibious: reason cannot go beyond the shore,
and the sense of the ineffable is out of place where we measure, where we weigh. 


Citizens of two realms, we must all sustain dual allegiance:
we sense the ineffable in one realm;
we name and exploit reality in another. 


Between the two we set up a system of references,
but can never fill the gap. 
They are as far and as close to each other…as life and 
what lies beyond the last breath.                                                              Man is Not Alone p8.



I hope they speak to you as well as, across time they speak to each other!






On issues of translation of course we want the best available, and of course we recognize that cultural resonances get lost – but still our spirit is fed.


On the Rumi poem there are some interesting comments HERE – including from ‘Cyrus’

What the Persian verses basically try to impart is that “We human beings give meanings and judgements to everything”. Everything just is. They all exist without having any knowledge of the meaning or judgement that we attribute to them.
Now the Persian word سودا means “Trade, Exchange, barter”. The best meaning here could be Exchange.

Here is my crude interpretation of the Persian verses.

Beyond the realm of heresy and faith there is a meadow

Within that space, we each have understandings to bestow

When the sage reaches that juncture, he’ll rest all his conjecture

Since neither heresy, nor faith, not even that place, any longer has a place



4 Replies to “I’ve asked Rumi and Heschel to speak to each other – see what they said! – (Juxtaposition 24.12.2012)”

  1. Thanks Roger, for spreading words of wisdom and peace. Your work is encouraging. In fact upon seeing my post in your blog, you encouraged me to contribute my take on the first verse of Tao Te Ching.
    Of course we all have a tendency to demystify the mysteries from our own spring-board of understanding under the light of our own perception. We just have to be mindful that a single light will cast shadows, unless, everyone does the same …

    The tao that can be taught,
    is not the real tao.
    The name that can be named
    is just to frame.

    The unnamable in-reality,
    has no reference-frame.
    A name in particularity,
    has at least one reference-frame.
    Never wanting,
    we contemplate on mysteries without our desire.
    Ever wanting,
    we see manifestations within our desires.
    Yet mystery and manifestation
    arise from the same source.
    This source is called darkness.
    Darkness within darkness.
    The gateway to “understanding”.
    ~ Lao Tzu


    1. Hi Cyrus

      Thanks – stay in touch – it’s great to know you’re out there!



      *Dr Roger Prentice – Speaker, Writer, Workshop provider, Professional life-coach, Photographer – TEL: 07724 062 875*

      *Main Blog HERE – *Twitter – FaceBook

      *Interfaith interspirituality articles HERE 1 minute interfaith meditation HERE My Photography is HERE – Marion’s online art gallery is HERE *

      SunWALK: a human-centred model/PhD for parents, teachers, development workers & educationalists is HERE


    2. Don’t know why I missed your comment – for which many thanks. I take the point about a single light will always cast shadows but for me the ‘One Garden’ is the state that the great mystics and teachers reached – the nonduality. Most of us ordinary mortals of course only get to visit briefly. All good wishes Roger


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