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Rumi: The Book of Love: Poems of Ecstasy and Longing
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Rumi: The Book of Love: Poems of Ecstasy and Longing

4.4 of 5 stars 4.40  ·  rating details  ·  2,161 ratings  ·  102 reviews
The Sufi mystic and poet Jalaluddin Rumi is most beloved for his poems expressing the ecstasies and mysteries of love in all its forms--erotic, platonic, divine--and Coleman Barks presents the best of them in this delightful and inspiring collection. Rendered with freshness, intensity, and beauty as Barks alone can do, these startling and rich poems range from the "wholene ...more
ebook, 240 pages
Published October 13th 2009 by HarperCollins Publishers (first published December 2nd 2002)
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Let me tell you an anecdote. Two years ago, on a certain sunny day, I was walking home after my classes. I was missing home but wasn’t sad nor was I feeling any sense of loneliness; I was quite happy that day. I was listening to Thais from Meditation Act II, a composition of Jules Massenet and my mind was quite at peace. The day seemed quite ordinary; nothing spectacular was happening anywhere within my sight. But then, suddenly, out of nowhere, something overwhelming happened to me. I have a ha ...more
I am not sure whom to give credit for this book to, Rumi or Coleman Barks. For the gift of translating it we certainly owe a debt to Barks but for the power and the truth contained we more deeply owe Rumi.

This is not a book of love poems for a sweetheart or a Valentine. This is a book to be given or read only in the cases of deepest and most positive realization that your life is bound up in another; romantic or otherwise. These poems are not about the kind of love which belongs on Hallmark car
Taymara Stephania  Jagmohan
Now now, this book really did teach me a lot.
How can you not love when the love that you're seeking is just in your soul? How can you not understand that love mesmerizes us and dazzles us to such an extent that we have no other option but to add more to it?
Love is and love will be.
You cannot force nor can you augment, you can only allow your soul to evaporate within the teachings of it.
It may seem like no necessity, but it grovels to a stand-point.
It makes you feel found; but also lost.
It render
Judy Croome
The problem with translations is that one never knows how much of what one is reading is the translator’s voice, and how much is the original artist’s voice.

Banks is credited with “popularising” Rumi’s works in America. That’s the essence of the difficulty I had with this translation. To “translate” a work, one “expresses the sense of (a word, book etc) in another language”, while to “popularise” a work is to “present a specialised subject in a popular or readily understandable form”.

In his no
Jonathanstray Stray
The man wrote 800 years ago in a radically different language and culture, and every word comes through.
To be perfectly honest, I thought Rumi's Book of Love was a little overrated. Perhaps it was just my translation, but I thought a lot of the poems alluded to obscure cultural (and obviously religious) themes, which makes it extremely curious to me why he is so popularly quoted in modern America. Anyway, there were a few shreds of lightness that I did capture and like, which made up for the parables that were not absorbed... and of course, those are the most quotable. Somehow this bothers me; it ...more
Ruhat alp
Rumi says: "Sometimes angels envy our cleanliness and sometimes the devils run away from our evil." He also says in the Mesnevi: "Since there are many devils who have the face of Adam, it is not well to give your hand to every hand. "

Considering man's habits and attributes, Rumi says in one of his poems: "They have made this physical form and appearance of man by bringing together many opposite attributes. They have drawn this form in the workshop of sorrows. They have kneaded his day with sadne
Huda AbuKhoti
I wanted to read this book after many references made by Khaled Hosseini to Rumi and Forough Farrokhzad.

As a Muslim this is entirely new to me.
New to me in the aspect that I felt like I was reading a book that is more related to Zen more so than Islam; that is why I carried on reading the poetry from that aspect.

It wasn't a religious book for me but more of spiritual and fictitious, that was the only way that let me enjoy it and finish it.

Having said that I loved a lot of the poetry, didn't ge
Richa Kashelkar
A lot of people have mistakenly considered this to be a book about romantic love, about love between two people. I guess this is why Rumi is the word of God for fanatic lovers and is quoted so extensively. (I was guilty of this too, at one point!)

The book is actually about something else altogether, and something way beyond the scope of worldly emotions and relationships. The call of longing and the ecstasy of union he writes of is all about our search for our Self, or God, whichever you choose.
Ramadan started, so I have to store it in the unfinished shelf

August 10, 2010

came back to finish it :)

what amazes me the most is Rumi's ability to love.

and I don't think one can find (in a lifetime) many people with such positive vision and endless energy.

and I kept wondering through out the book if Rumi ever met anyone he hated or if those he loved actually deserved all that love...did Rumi ever felt cheated on or experienced jealousy?

it's truly wonderful to contain all that love, but was Rumi
Tom Emanuel
Rather than attempt to review the wonder that is Coleman Barks's sterling re-interpretations of Rumi's staggeringly beautiful mystic poetry, I'm going to simply extract four lines that have been blowing my mind pretty consistently in recent days:

"Why did you stop praising?"
"Because I've never heard anything back."
"This longing you express
is the return message." (from "Love Dogs," p. 146)

...and there it is. My mind is blown. As it was by almost every freaking poem in this collection. Let the prai
I didn't read it end to end, but then again, it's not a novel. That said, some poems in this collection are absolutely exquisite. Among my favourites,

"Excuse my wandering.
How can one be orderly with this?
It's like counting leaves in a garden

along with the song notes of partridges
and crows. Sometimes organisation
and computation become absurd."

And this one is beautiful too,

"If you love love,
look for yourself."

Keep a copy in your shelf to pick a page randomly once in a while and please yourself.
Lilia Zuhara
This book talks about love. But when you expect kind of love which solely involved feeling, this in not the proper book for you. Rumi talked about love in deeper sight. Love is not only about ecstasy and agony, it's also about the purity of love which also purify your soul. If you really dip yourself into this book, you'll be enlightened at the end. You just can't skim this read.
The one star goes to the translator. His translation is really bad. It is actually not a translation but a silly adaptation of Rumi's poems. In between the poems you have to survive the "philosophical" comments of the wise translator.
I flew through this book. For some reason, I am just now learning about Coleman Barks and his interpretations of existing Rumi translations. Very beautiful... And, the intros into each chapter speak of Barks' personality and spiritual journey. He is a real character, blooming from Southern soils (he lives in Georgia). A critique -- some poems appeared more than once...very haphazard, but possibly in the spirit of Rumi.
Mario Adame
This book is a must read for poetry lovers. Rumi is peaceful in his long poetry lines, but his deepest and enlightenment comes from short poems. I enjoyed the author's breakdown of each chapter, which included well written dialogue before the start of each category.
Love and connection with your inner self and the human spirit. These poems are humbling and grand in their simplicity and creative imagery. Rumi has wisdom that would benefit many a person. I'm especially find of the poem 'Moses and the Shepherd'.
Rumi gets under your skin like no other poet can. He is one of my favorite poets, along with Pablo Neruda and Charles Bukowski.
Nancy McKinley
Rumi: It is what it is. What follows is an excerpt from a piece I wrote on the fantastic poet.

"...His words were simple and earthy. Words that came straight to the point, jutting out at odd angles, all the while meandering along the sandy bank, flowing along with the gentle stream. Words that reflected a quiet beauty; a oneness with nature conveyed in tiny jagged pieces that formed an exquisite mosaic of thought and feeling.

He wrote of love in such a simple and honest way and his words have insp
if you like poems, i'm sure this is one the best books out there. i adore rumi so much : )
Sara Jane Blackman
The ecstasy and longing, though not what the title implies, take me elsewhere... "Like this."
Good for those who still wants to believe that there is indeed enough love in this world. Is there?

I used to want buyers for my words.
Now I wish someone would buy me away from words.

I’ve made a lot of charmingly profound images,
scenes with Abraham and his father Azar,
who was famous for icons.

I’m so tired of what I’ve been doing.
Then one image without form came, and I quit.

Look for someone else to tend the shop.
I’m out of the image-making business.

Finally I know the freedom of madness.

A random image arrives. I scream, “Get out!”
It disintegrates.

Only love.
Only the holder the flag fi
Uttiya Roy
This was read entirely in the confines of our library and a new world opened up to me. I should confess before I venture father along, that I always found love to be more associated with the physical than with the soul. Yet, there was this book that would differ with my entire analogy of romance, that would make me look fondly back at all the tear stained evenings I have left behind.
Now then, younger we would always think of the soul, we would think of life, and all the big things. And romance w
Robert Sheppard

Goethe honored Persian Literature as one of the four great literary traditions of World Literature, or "Weltliteratur" as he named it. I
Some of these poems really resonated, and in some I found myself completely lost. I have no background in 13th century Sufism, and found it difficult to distinguish between the love Rumi describes for the Friend and the love for another, both of which he speaks of at length. (Also, the nature of his relationship with Shams Tabriz is never really elaborated upon.)

Nonetheless, it was an enjoyable and at times very thought-provoking read.
39. Mnogo vina
42. "U tvojoj svjetlosti učim kako voljeti. U tvojoj ljepoti učim pjesme pisati. U grudima mi plešeš, tu gdje nitko te ne vidi, no ja te ponekad spazim, a ono što vidim ovakvo djelo postane."
56. Ovu šaru u svoj ćilim utkaj; "Duhovno istkustvo skromna je žena koja samo jednoga muškarca s ljubavlju gleda... Vidljiva posuda oblika puna je hrane koja i hrani, ali i žgaravicu stvara."
57. Put kući
102. Košara svježeg kruha
132. Strah
158. Jednako brzo
Green Heart Guidance
Like many others, I am a fan of the poetry of Rumi. There are many collections out there, so when I ordered The Book of Love: Poems of Ecstasy and Longing, I had the expectation that this would be a book focused primarily on love. In reality, only part of the book focuses on love. Other sections focus on topics such as drunkenness and animals. While I appreciated the academic tone of this book with helpful prefaces and footnotes, it simply wasn’t what I was looking for.
I do love Rum'is poetry, but I was heavily disturbed by the fact that in the comments and chapter openings translator talked about himself...Well I know about Layla's and Majnun love story, but when I want to give book as a gift to someone who probably dosen't, then I would like that there would be opportunity to read about that in the comments, not about a love letter translator sent in the fourth grade...and so on. Would it have been just the poems in the book, would have been five stars...
Lulu Bella
Considering this is a translation from writings 800 years ago, the wisdom & clarity of; love, deep love without boundaries, passion, and discovering that the universe is ours & that we are pure love with human trappings. I've been so incredibly moved by the quotes on their own for years now. The book as a whole holds some of the history of morality of the time, but is a little confusing whether these freedoms are applied to both men and women, when compared to some of my favorite quotes. ...more
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Profile in Farsi: مولوی

Mawlānā Jalāl-ad-Dīn Muhammad Rūmī (Persian: مولانا جلال الدین محمد رومی), also known as Mawlānā Jalāl-ad-Dīn Muhammad Balḫī (Persian: محمد بلخى) or Maulana Jalal al-Din Rumi, but known to the English-speaking world simply as Rumi , was a 13th century Persian (Tādjīk) poet, Islamic jurist, and theologian. Rumi is a descriptive name meaning "the Roman" since he lived most pa
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“Poetry can be dangerous, especially beautiful poetry, because it gives the illusion of having had the experience without actually going through it.” 169 likes
“She loved him so much she concealed his name in many phrases, the inner meanings known only to her.” 150 likes
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