- Rumi full name is Jalāl ad-Dīn Muḥammad Balkhī or Jalāl ad-Dīn Muḥammad Rūmī meaning “Glory of the Faith”.
- Rumi was born in 1207 to native Persian-speaking parents, originally from the Balkh, in present-day Afghanistan. Rumi lived most of his life under the Persianate Seljuk Sultanate of Rum, where he produced his works and died in 1273 AD.
- Rumi’s father was Bahā ud-Dīn Walad, a theologian, jurist and a mystic from Balkh, who was also known by the followers of Rumi as Sultan al-Ulama or “Sultan of the Scholars”.
- When the Mongols invaded Central Asia sometime between 1215 and 1220, Baha ud-Din Walad, with his whole family and a group of disciples, set out westwards.
- Rumi encountered one of the most famous mystic Persian poets, Attar, in the Iranian city of Nishapur, located in the province of Khorāsān. Attar immediately recognized Rumi’s spiritual eminence.
- This meeting had a deep impact on the eighteen-yearold Rumi and later on became the inspiration for his works.
- Baha’ ud-Din became the head of a madrassa (religious school) and when he died, Rumi, aged twenty-five, inherited his position as the Islamic molvi.
- For nine years, Rumi practised Sufism as a disciple of Burhan ud-Din until the latter died in 1240 or 1241. Rumi’s public life then began: he became an Islamic Jurist, issuing fatwas and giving sermons in the mosques of Konya.
- It was his meeting with the dervish Shams-e Tabrizi on 15 November 1244 that completely changed his life. From an accomplished teacher and jurist, Rumi was transformed into an ascetic.
- Rumi died on 17 December 1273 in Konya. His death was mourned by the diverse community of Konya, with local Christians and Jews joining the crowd that converged to bid farewell as his body was carried through the city.
- Like other mystic and Sufi poets of Persian literature, Rumi’s poetry speaks of love which infuses the world. Rumi’s teachings also express the tenets summarized in the Quranic verse which Shams-e Tabrizi cited as the essence of prophetic guidance.
- Rumi believed passionately in the use of music, poetry and dance as a path for reaching God. For Rumi, music helped devotees to focus their whole being on the divine and to do this so intensely that the soul was both destroyed and resurrected
- Rumi’s poetry is often divided into various categories: the quatrains (rubayāt) and odes (ghazal) of the Divan, the six books of the Masnavi. The prose works are divided into The Discourses, The Letters, and the Seven Sermons.
- Rumi’s best-known work is the Maṭnawīye Ma’nawī .The six-volume poem holds a distinguished place within the rich tradition of Persian Sufi literature, and has been commonly called “the Quran in Persian”.
- Many commentators have regarded it as the greatest mystical poem in world literature. It contains approximately 27,000 lines,each consisting of a couplet with an internal rhyme.
- Rumi’s other major work is the Dīwān-e Kabīr (Great Work) or Dīwān-e Shams-e Tabrīzīm.
- Besides approximately 35000 Persian couplets and 2000 Persian quatrains,the Divan contains 90 Ghazals and 19 quatrains in Arabic a couple of dozen or so couplets in Turkish (mainly macaronic poems of mixed Persian and Turkish)and 14 couplets in Greek.
- Fihi Ma Fihi provides a record of seventy-one talks and lectures given by Rumi on various occasions to his disciples. It was compiled from the notes of his various disciples, so Rumi did not author the work directly.
- Majāles-e Sab’a (Seven Sessions)or lectures given in seven different assemblies. The sermons themselves give a commentary on the deeper meaning of Qur’an and Hadith.