Category Archives: persian

Desire | بهر آن میلست

For Sashels…

بهر آن میلست در ماده به نر
تا بود تکمیل کار همدگر
میل اندر مرد و زن حق زان نهاد
تا بقا یابد جهان زین اتحاد
میل هر جزوی به جزوی هم نهد
ز اتحاد هر دو تولیدی زهد
شب چنین با روز اندر اعتناق
مختلف در صورت اما اتفاق
روز و شب ظاهر دو ضد و دشمنند
لیک هر دو یک حقیقت می تنند
هر یکی خواهان دگر را همچو خویش
از پی تکمیل فعل و کار خویش
زانک بی شب دخل نبود طبع را
پس چه اندر خرج آرد روزها

bahr-e-an meilast dar madeh beh nar

ta bud takmil kar-e-hamdegar

meil andar-e-mard o zan haqq zan nehad

ta baqa yabad jahan zin ettehad

meil-e-har jozui beh jozui ham nehad

ze ettehad-e-har do towlidi zahad

shab chenin ba ruz andar-e-etenaq

mokhtalef dar surat amma ettefaq

ruz o shab zaher-e-do zedd o dashmanand

leik har do yek haqiqat mitanand

har yeki khahan degar ra hamchu khish

az pay takmil-e-fe’el o kar-e-khish

zank bi shab dakhl nabud tabe’ ra

pas che andar-e-kharj arad ruzha

/purpose [of]/that/desire/is/in/female/for/male/

/so [that]/was/complete/work/[of] each other/

/desire/into/man/and/woman/Truth/from it/put/

/so [that]/survive/[would] be/world/from this/union/

/desire [of]/one part/to/one part/also/placed/

/from/union/both/a product/give/

/night/the same/with/day/in/embrace/

/different/in/form/but/unison/

/day/and/night/appear/contrary/and/enemies/are/

/but/both/one/truth/… [proclaim]/

/each one/wants/[the] other/just like/self/

/for/completion [of]/action/and/work/[of] itself/

/from that/without/night/income/[would] not be/nature/[to]/

/then/what/[into]/outside/spend/days/

Woman’s desire and man’s

exist to complete each others’ work.

From the absolute, desire emanates

into each

For the world of form to be preserved.

The desire of one incompleteness for the other

likewise exists

so that from their union, newness is born.

Just like this, night embraces day.

Opposite in form, always already one.

To the senses day and night appear in contrast to each other.

But both silently attest to the same sweet truth.

Each desires the other as its own self

to complete some hidden purpose.

And as for human nature,

without night,

what income would it receive?

Without that sweet shared mystery,

its days would have nothing to expend.

Mowlana Jalaluddin Mohammad Balkhi ‘Rumi’ — Mathnawi III 4414-20

–translation by halewi

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Love is reckless | لاابالی عشق باشد

To P. Minto…

لاابالی عشق باشد نی خرد
عقل آن جوید کز آن سودی برد
ترک تاز و تن گداز و بی حیا
در بلا چون سنگ زیر آسیاب
سخت رویی که ندارد هیچ پشت
بهره جویی را درون خویس کشت
پاک می بازد، نباشد مزد جو
آنچنان که پاک می گیرد زهو
می دهد حق هستیش بی علتی
می سپارد باز بی علت فتی
که فتوت دادن بی علتست
پاک بازی خارج هر ملتست
زآنکه ملت فضل جوید یا خلاص
پاک بازانند قربانان خاص
نی خدا را امتحانی می کنند
نی در سود و زیانی می زنند

la-obali eshq ni kherad

aql an juyad kaz an sudi barad

tork taz o tan godaz o bi hayya

dar bala chon sang-e-zir-e-asiab

sakht ruyi ke nadarad hich posht

bahreh juyi ra darun-e-khish kosht

pak mibazad, nabashad mozd ju

an chenan keh pak migirad ze hu

midahad haq hastiash bi ellati

mi separad baz bi ellat fati

keh fotavat dadan-e-bi ellatast

pak bazi kharej-e-har mellatast

zankeh mellat fazl juyad ya khelas

pak bazanand ghorbanan-e-khas

ni khoda ra emtehan mikonand

ni dar-e-sud o ziani mizanand


/reckless/love/is/[but] not/intellect/

/reason/[for] that/searches/from which/profit/gains/

/[as fierce as] a Turk/red-hot/and/body-melting/and/without modesty/

/in/distress/like/nether millstone/

/stone-faced/that/has/no/back [at all]/

/gain-seeking/in/[his/her]self/has killed/

/gambles clean [away],/is not/wage-seeking/

/so long as/receives clean/from Him/

/gives/Truth/[his/her] existence/without cause/

/gives it/back again/without cause/young beggar/

/for/devotion/giving/without/cause/is/

/gambling clean [away]/beyond/any/religion/is/

/in as much as/religion/favour/seeks/or/deliverance/

/those who gamble clean [away]/are/[the] special sacrifices/

/neither/God/[do they] test/

/nor/[on the] door of/profit/and/loss/[do they] hit/

Love is reckless–not reason.

Reason searches for a profit.

Love comes on fiercely, scorching, melting all form, shameless.

But in despair, sturdy as a millstone.

Stone-faced, loyal, selfless.

Love is love because it’s killed all self-regard.

Love gambles itself away. It doesn’t look for payment.

It receives everything it needs

from beyond.

The absolute gives us life for no reason.

The lover gives it back again just the same.

For true devotion is giving–without cause.

Gambling  yourself clean away is beyond any religion.

While religion is for seeking favour and deliverance,

Those who gamble themselves clean away are

the choicest sacrifice.

They don’t put You to the test.

Nor do they knock on the door of gain and loss.

All they want is to give

Everything.

 

Mowlana Jalaluddin Mohammad Balkhi ‘Rumi’ — Mathnawi VI 1967-74

–translation by halewi

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Gifts | گر بیان معنوی کافی شدی

گر بیان معنوی کافی شدی
خلق عالم عاطل و باطل بدی
گر محبت فکرت و معنیستی
صورت روزه و نمازت نیستی
هدیه‌های دوستان با همدگر
نیست اندر دوستی الا صور
تا گواهی داده باشد هدیه‌ها
بر محبتهای مضمر در خفا

gar bayan-e-ma’anavi kafi shodi

khalq-e-‘alam ‘atel o batel budi

gar mohabbat fekrat o ma’anisti

surat ruzeh o namazat nisti

hediyeh-ha-ye-dustan ba hamdegar

nist andar-e-dusti ela savar

ta govahi dadeh bashad hediyeh-ha

bar mohabbat-ha-yeh-mozmar dar khafa

/if/spiritual discourse/enough/had been/

/creation of the [temporal] world/useless/and/vain/was/

/if/love/thought/and/[temporal] meaning/is/

/form/fasting/and/prayer/is not/

/gifts of friends/to/each other/

/is not/as to friendship/but/forms/

/so that/witnessing/being given/gifts/

/to/tacit loves/in/mystery/

If spiritual words were enough

the created world would be useless and vain.

If love was all thought and sense

fasting and prayer would not exist.

Friends’ gifts to each other,

compared to friendship,

are nothing but forms.

But their giving is what

testifies to those mysterious loves unseen.

 

Mowlana Jalaluddin Mohammad Balkhi ‘Rumi’ — Mathnawi I 2625-27

–translation by halewi

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Exclusive: Zizek on Iran

A collaborative translation of BBC Persian’s recent exclusive interview with Zizek. Cross-posted on the new site, transliminal.org:

http://www.overstream.net/swf/player/oplx?oid=awswrnnzipa3&noplay=1

Many thanks to Kam, Mani and Sheyda for their help on this one.

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An Eid gift from a young Afghani friend

Thanks to SK for sharing this with me, early on the last morning of Ramadan. Eid mobarak, to whomever is celebrating, or would like an excuse to.

YouTube – Ahmad Zahir–Rumi: It isn’t wise to separate from companions

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Slavoj Zizek talks to Ali Alizadeh on BBC Persian

YouTube – Slavoj Zizek talks to Ali Alizadeh on BBC Persian Tamasha

*UPDATE* — Fully subtitled version here:

http://www.transliminal.org/?p=220

BBC Persian discovers the joys of Slavoj Zizek.

Here’s a quick breakdown of their coverage (don’t mind my amateur translation):

0:00-0:27:

The speaker introduces Zizek, saying how he’s one of the sharpest thinkers around today, and that you can find his work in the bookshops of all the world’s major cities. If you’d like to know more about the ideas of this renowned Slovenian philosopher, she says, have a listen to the exclusive interview he gave to [BBC Persian anchor] Ali Alizadeh, where he talks for the first time about his views on Iran, Iranians, and their culture and socialization.

0:28-1:16:

Narrator: In 2005, he defended Iran’s right to a nuclear bomb… in 2008, he regarded the film 300, which offended most Iranians, as Hollywood’s most anti-imperialist movie…  in 2009 he publicized how the Green Movement in Iran was creating space for the repetition of European patterns of struggle… In his 61 years, Slavoj Zizek has written over 54 books which have been translated into over 20 languages… 12 of those works have made him one of today’s most renowned living European philosophers… [BBC host Stephen Sackur talks in English…]

1:17-…

Narrator: …

[to be continued…]

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The Chickpea

The Chickpea
– by Mowlana Jalaluddin Muhammad Balkhi (Rumi)

A chickpea in a pot leaps from the flame,

out from the boiling water,

Crying, “Why do you set fire to me?

You chose me, bought me, brought me home for this?”

The cook hits it with her spoon into the pot.

“No! Boil nicely, don’t jump away from the one who makes the fire.

I don’t boil you out of hatred.

Through boiling you may grow flavorful, nourishing,

and united with vital human spirit.

I don’t inflict this suffering out of spite.

Once green and fresh, you drank rain in the garden;

you drank for the sake of this fire.”

…via The Chickpea.

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