Thursday, June 21, 2012

Great Wall of China

On this side, ruled lines,
Rivers bridged, terraced fields,
Lintels and windows,
Roads leading to other roads
And those to highways
That led to the capital.

On the other, shifting dunes,
Tracks of horses,
Wild game slain by wilder men:
Ibex, pheasant, hare.
Mounted riders glimpsed on distant ridges,
Watching, wheeling, gone.

A land whose maps dwelt only in memory
But for those rare nights when,
Sketched by firelight in sand or cinders,
They took earthly form,
Revealed their contours to new eyes,
And scattered with morning's wind.

Now one who stood atop the wall wondered
Had it all been this way before its building -
The two landscapes growing
Ever more strange to each other,
Like brothers raised in separate houses,
Or had the coming of the wall made it so?

And who alive could even
Recall the answer,
Resurrect it from its
Tomb of time?
Surely none he knew,
Or would ever know.

Such questions were not worth the asking,
He concluded, stretching himself for slumber
In the high guardhouse that sat astride the wall,
The two lands recumbent on either side.
But still he found the question circled him warily,
A gaunt stray skulking at camp's edge.

When he finally slept, he dreamt of wild horses.

Great Wall by Adam Sass


Thursday, June 14, 2012

Heart problem.


When the eyes of the heart open, we can see the inner realities hidden behind the outer forms of the world. When the ears of the heart open, we can hear what is hidden behind the words; we can hear the truth.


Opening the heart means coming closer to God. God said, through Muhammad, “I who cannot be fit into universes upon universes, fit into the heart of the sincere believer.” The heart is a temple that can house God. To open our hearts is to allow in the divine presence.


The heart of hearts in each of us houses a spark of the Divine. This is the meaning of the biblical and Koranic quote, “And God breathed the breath of life into Adam,” also translated, “And God breathed divine spirit into Adam” As our hearts open, we come more in touch with the wisdom, love, joy, and inspiration from the divine spark within.


All wisdom is already within us; all love is already within us, all joy. Yet they are hidden within us until the heart opens.


I would like help with my heart problem. I have diagrams of the heart. I know the direction the blood is pumped, some of the control mechanisms and have seen open heart operations. The problem is, that although I understand the above passage from ‘Essential Sufism’ Chap 9, the image of ‘heart’ gives me biological images and as a metaphor it’s not quite working for me.

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