Qasimul Anwar: Before the Mosque and Temple

Little is known about the mystic and poet Qasimul Anwar (1356-1435 CE).  He was born near Tabriz in Iran, but settled in Herat, in Afghanistan.  He does not seem to have written very much. In this poem he tells us that when we attain intimacy with the Real, no ‘intermediary,’ no messenger is needed, and all conventions and rules lose their meaning–’Every good thing is allowed to those who are good,’ but he also warns himself to rein in his speech and not to say too much on the subject.

Before the Mosque and Temple

Before the mosque and temple
Came to be,
We existed with You
In another plane.

No need for a message
to be passed to us.
When we are together
We need no intermediary.

Let not the mention of the other
Come on your tongue;
It’s not the way for people of the heart
To speak of others but the Friend.

Sobriety is not necessary
When you tread on the mystic path;
Here each atom in the universe
Is intoxicating, drunk.

O puritain, don’t pronounce
That this is bad and that forbid;
Every good thing is allowed
To those who are good.

Qasim beware, and rein
In your speech.
It’s best
Let the Pir of Love
Speak of the rest.

Tr. Mahmood Jamal

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