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Commentary on the Spiritual Couplets of Mevlana Rumi
Paperback Book
Fons Vitae
December, 2011
$36.50 CAD
Banyen's Description: 
In this commentary of Rumi's Masnavi, Kenan Rifai (1867-1950) clarifies the narrative line, comments on symbolic implications, and connects Rumi's verse to passages from the Qur'an, the hadith of the Prophet Muhammad, and the sayings and poems of Sufi masters in Arabic, Turkish, and Persian.  It is this rich multilingual texture that gives Kenan Rifai's commentary its particular flavor.  His explanation conveys the multiple levels of reference and allusion that were typically brought to bear in study circles where Rumi's verses were recited and discussed.  There is a certain informality in the style of Kenan Rifai's commentary that distinguishes it from the more scholastic approach of its predecessors.

"Most readers of Rumi in the West are unaware that, for centuries, Muslims in much of the world have looked upon him as an outstanding guide on the path of achieving oneness with God.  Holbrook's highly readable translation of Rifai's Listen! goes a long way toward showing how Rumi has been understood in his own cultural context down to modern times." —William Chittick, author of The Sufi Doctrine of Rumi

"For all of us Rumi lovers who have adored Rumi's sublime poetry, here is the answer to our prayers:  a rich, profound, and yet accessible commentary on Rumi's masterpiece, the Masnavi.  The lovely translation, by the superb scholar Victoria Holbrook, of Kenan Rifa'i, stands out as the definitive English language commentary on Rumi's writings. Kenan Rifa'i stands as an heir to the ottoman wisdom of Sufism, yet is fully situated as a modern being whose sensitivities make this commentary a bridge between our world and the world of Rumi, even as Rumi's own being and writings bridge earth and heaven. Drink it with heart and soul!" —Dr. Omid Safi, Religious Studies, UNC-Chapel Hill

Publisher’s Description: 

An exceptional contribution to the understanding of a key figure in Islamic mysticism, this book offers a 20th century commentaryby the eminent Sufi and spiritual guide Kenan Rifaion Jalal ad-Din Rumis 13th-century Spiritual Couplets, or Masnavi. Symbolically connecting the long poem to Quranic passages, hadiths, and other poems by Sufi masters, this enlightening reference answers the most tortuous of problems and guides one to comprehend the meaning of life. A rigorous translation of Rumis original work is also included.

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