Beggars by Rumi
There's a voice in the beggar's ear that says, Come close.
Generosity needs you.
As beautiful people love clear mirrors, so abundance becomes
visible when you move near.
God reminded Muhammad not to shout and drive away the
beggars. Approach the source
with both hands out begging! There are two kinds of
mendicants: one grace causes
to call out for alms in the street, while the others are
given immediately more than
they need without saying anything. Both are mirrors for how
the absolute acts. Anyone else
is a fake. Don't hand a piece of greasy bread to the picture
of a dog! The beauty that a
true dervish hungers for is real. How can someone in love
with his own imagination also
be in love with the lord of all giving? I'll tell you.
There's a quality of sincerity in
some that leads them from metaphor to what's behind the
metaphor. I'm afraid to
elaborate on this. Weak minds may use the explanation
foolishly. Think of a sad
face drawn on paper. Can it learn from its grief? There is
a happiness and a sadness
that are just figures on a bathhouse wall. Move through the
world naked, noticing the pictures
that live. Inner joy and grief are different from artful
appearance. Take off your
phenomena-clothes when you enter the soul's steam bath: no
one comes in here with clothes on.
*From The Soul of Rumi by Coleman Barks