Rumi’s Meditation

Ari Honarvar
2 min readMay 13, 2016


Calligram by Ari Honarvar (copyright 2010)

In this moment, I am entwined

in the vine of love

In this moment I have abandoned care

for consequence

Perhaps you think me a prisoner

of this world

But I am here, the prison is there

I laugh, whose belongings have I stolen?

Come live where I reside

My home is beyond “In o Aan”

What need have I for a mind?

I have destroyed my

thoughts and burnt my worries

Something Other has my attention

What need have I for a heart?

Blood of the Beloved

is running through my veins

I am life itself — Rumi

Once there wasn’t, once there was.* A wise pir (guru) often took his students to the market place. On one occasion he and his disciple happened upon a man leading a cow with a rope.

Sultan asked the man: “Sir, is this cow bound to you or are you bound to the cow?” The man laughed, “Sultan, Of course he is bound to me. I am the cow’s master. Wherever I go, he goes.” Sultan asked, “then, kindly open your hand and let the rope go.”

The man hesitated first, but then slowly opened his hand and let down the rope. The cow, feeling untethered, began running through the street. The man took off chasing after the cow.

“You see, the cow feels no affiliation to the man. The man is desperate trying to bind himself to the cow. Now who is the master?”, Sultan asked his disciple.

“In o aan” is the Persian phrase for “this and that” for the drivel you are keeping inside. It has has no affiliation to you. Trying to bind yourself to it, you are in constant turmoil. Lose interest in “in o aan” and it will disappear like the cow in the story.

*This is how all Persian stories begin. The phrase is akin to “once upon a time”.



Ari Honarvar

Speaker, performer, refugee advocate| @guardian @washingtonpost and more| The author of Rumi’s Gift and upcoming novel, A Girl Called Rumi