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Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing,

mariam_11_09's picture
mariam_11_09
Posts: 693
Joined: Nov 2009

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.

---Rumi

ellamenno's picture
ellamenno
Posts: 139
Joined: Aug 2010

Oh Mariam, I have a piece of jewelry with those very words engraved on it. Lovely sentiments indeed.

Peace, Laurie

PhillieG's picture
PhillieG
Posts: 4659
Joined: May 2005

Thank you for posting that

stayingcalm's picture
stayingcalm
Posts: 656
Joined: Feb 2007

This is Rumi, 13th century Persian poet/mystic/Sufi, he's meant to be unintelligible, LOL. I'll tell you what it means to me: That there is a place of inexpressible "something" where everyone and everything are one, speech is pointless when all are one, and there is no meaning to the ideas of right and wrong. Possibly a place attained through meditation. Or death.

(I suspect an answer like that would draw an "E" for effort from my old English teachers) =)

Further conjecture about the poem's meaning

soccerfreaks's picture
soccerfreaks
Posts: 2801
Joined: Sep 2006

Wrong doing and right doing are things that we invent within our various religions and cultures. There is a place, inside of our minds, where we might agree that this is so, and then come together to meet on common ground, without the shackles of our personal histories, our personal religions, our personal cultures.

There, we can meet and treasure the moment of our meeting and our understanding.

The word 'grass' is exquisite, as it reminds us that we must sense the world, we must feel the world, all of its life and beauty and sensuality, even as we work to understand one another. And the next statement is too obvious: there is so much going on in the world that if we were to concentrate on the totality of it, we would lose all meaning: "ideas, language, even the phrase each other...".

When we lie down upon the grass we realize that we cannot understand all that is happening in the world, but we can understand the sensation of lying in the grass, and we can appreciate the knowing of one another.

Take care,

Joe

Marcia527's picture
Marcia527
Posts: 2731
Joined: Jul 2006

Joe, you explained it so well. I had a general understanding but your explanation was wonderful.

soccerfreaks's picture
soccerfreaks
Posts: 2801
Joined: Sep 2006

Is it cheerleading season? :) (I hope those aren't dead azaleas like the ones in my front yard!)

A true folk artist, my friend.

Take care,

Joe

mariam_11_09's picture
mariam_11_09
Posts: 693
Joined: Nov 2009

Great explanation Joe!

I would also like to add to it.

Out beyond the mind (right and wrong are ideas that create duality)There is a place called love and compassion where there is non-duality.
When the soul rests in this place it is so expansive and fulfilling,the mind and talking (these are the things that distract us from this place) are not needed.
The phrase ‘each other’ does not exist because there is no separation, we are not separate from anything or anyone, we are each other.

Sometimes we get so distracted by our minds, about what one ‘should’ be doing or what is right and what is wrong or our drama however there is so much more to life. When we let go of that distraction, when we let go our needs to feel persecuted or victimized or competitive or drama or whatever we have the space to move into this place of real compassion where it doesn’t matter that you are a Christian, I a Muslim or you a Buddhist or someone else an atheist or agnostic or whatever other labels there are. In this place beyond duality we are really all connected in the deepest way possible, there is no need to fight or argue or put other people down or to try and dominate. There is a melting of the hardness of our egos, a vulnerability, contentment, expansiveness and fulfillment and we experience us as we really are.

soccerfreaks's picture
soccerfreaks
Posts: 2801
Joined: Sep 2006

Interesting, mariam, how your interpretation requires leaving the mind while mine entails going deep within it, to achieve similar results. Thank you for the thoughtful verse and for the equally thoughtful interpretation.

Take care,

Joe

mariam_11_09's picture
mariam_11_09
Posts: 693
Joined: Nov 2009

Joe, I wonder how different we are in our interpretations that is, you suggest going deeply into the mind and I suggest ‘loosing’ the mind. I wonder if we are referring to the same thing. I always thought that ‘deep’ reflection ‘was done with the mind while that is true, there is another component that I eventually learnt was missing, that of surrender (and/or the heart), that I needed to let go of what I believed and hung onto with my mind. Once letting go of that my mind was free to reflect in a much deeper way. For me, leaving the mind in my interpretation doesn’t mean I can’t think nor operate in this world it means I don’t have the endless chatter in my head. I actually think clearly and only say what is necessary.

Some of us get caught up in our minds in a very unhealthy way and reflection becomes obsession and not real reflection. While I don’t think the mind is bad (by no means, I earn a living because of it and I love thinking clearly) I have had to learn new skills to be able to reflect in a way that helps me rather than keeps me stuck and to let go of all the extraneous stuff. (Ongoing practice for me)

I really like what you wrote here
“When we lie down upon the grass we realize that we cannot understand all that is happening in the world, but we can understand the sensation of lying in the grass, and we can appreciate the knowing of one another.”

You are correct, that when we lie down on the grass and realize that we cannot understand all that is happening in the world and let go of trying to understand and become present we can really feel the sensation of the grass beneath us and we can really appreciate each other. The depth of this is very touching and for me, goes beyond words.

I like way in which you brought in something more tangible – the field and the grass which brings us back to our senses, to our bodies, the reality and the beauty of this world and by focusing on that we let go of what no longer matters.

I really appreciate your input Joe. I enjoy these discussions.

take care
Mariam

soccerfreaks's picture
soccerfreaks
Posts: 2801
Joined: Sep 2006

(The Doors reference)

As do I, mariam, with respect to our discussions.

I read your initial interpration as uber-mystical, perhaps. Specifically, I felt you were separating soul from mind, a perfectly valid consideration, and suggesting that the verse describes leaving the mind to explore with the soul without distraction, to understand, without complication, to KNOW and to FEEL without THINKING. That assumes the existence of a soul separate from the mind which is something I can understand even if I am not there.

My interpretation seemed more Zen-like at the time, ignoring distractions (as you indicate) and meditating, if you will, into a deeper, quieter place within the mind. Small difference, perhaps not one at all, as you suggest.

Take care,

Joe

Tricia02's picture
Tricia02
Posts: 130
Joined: Mar 2009

Thought I would add this one, as it is one I refer to often - my Persian friend Shusha gave this to me many years back, and she has since passed from cancer. Thought I would share it.

Breathe

Not Christian or Jew or Muslim, not Hindu
Buddhist, sufi, or zen. Not any religion
or cultural system. I am not from the East
or the West, not out of the ocean or up
from the ground, not natural or ethereal, not
composed of elements at all. I do not exist,
am not an entity in this world or in the next,
did not descend from Adam and Eve or any
origin story. My place is placeless, a trace
of the traceless. Neither body or soul.

I belong to the beloved, have seen the two
worlds as one and that one call to and know,
first, last, outer, inner, only that
breath breathing human being.

Essential Rumi

AussieMaddie's picture
AussieMaddie
Posts: 345
Joined: May 2011

Lovely thread.
Thank you,
I cannot add more to it but wallow in your shared insight and vision.
AussieMaddie

Hondo's picture
Hondo
Posts: 5635
Joined: Apr 2009

You might ask what is wrongdoing and what is rightdoing if there was no laws to tell us the different. There are set laws that govern the world we live in like the law of gravity, and there are manmade laws that tell us how to live together as a people. They there are Gods laws that tell us who he is, what he has done for us, and how to respect each other. Out beyond that might just be all empty space….

Hondo

mariam_11_09's picture
mariam_11_09
Posts: 693
Joined: Nov 2009

here is one interpretation ....
empty no, but vast and huge and endless with an underlying sense of fulfillness, contentment, joy and perfection no matter what happens, yes. And when we are in this place we don't need laws of what is right and wrong because the 'rightness' of what 'is' in that moment is enough and our actions reflect this inner state so we naturally treat each other with respect and honour. In the place where we need laws telling us how to 'act' in this world is only because we have lost the ability to move into a place beyond the wrongdoing and rightdoing.

AND ...
When we move beyond our differences we see that underneath we are all really the same. The 'labels' kills our ability to move beyond our differences.

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