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Poetry by Sultan Bahu

Poetry by Sultan Bahu

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04/20/2012

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My Master(Spiritual Guide) has planted in my heart The jasmine of Allah’s Name.

Both my denial that the Creation is real And my embracing of God, the only reality, Have nourished the seedling down to its core. When the buds of mystery unfolded Into the blossoms of revelation, My entire being was filled with God’s Fragrance. May the perfect Master Who planted this jasmine in my heart Be ever blessed, O Bahu!

You have read the name of God over and over, You have stored the holy Qur’an in your memory, But this has still not unveiled the hidden mystery. Instead, your learning and scholarship Have sharpened your greed for worldly things, None of the countless books you’ve read in your life Has destroyed your brutal ego. Indeed, none but the Saints can kill this inner thief, For it ravages the very house in which it lives.

When the one Lord revealed himself to me, I lost myself in him. Now there is neither nearness nor union. There is no longer a journey to undertake, No longer a destination to reach. Love attachment, my body and soul And even the very limits of time and space Have all dropped from my consciousness. My separate self has merged in the Whole: In that, O Bahu, lies the secret of the unity that is God!

The moment I realized the oneness of God, the flame of his love shone within, to lead me on. Constantly it burns in my heart with intense heat, Revealing the mysteries along my path. This fire of love burns inside me with no smoke, Fuelled by my intense longing for the Beloved. Following the Royal Vein,* I found the Lord close by. My love has brought me face to face with him.

The Royal Vein or shah rag is the central current in the subtle body, starting from the eye centre and leading up to the highest spiritual regions. It is located and followed by means of the spiritual practise taught by a perfect Master. The hindu’s call it sushmana or sukhmana nadi. It is the Royal Highway to the court of the Lord. It is not to be confused with the sushmana naadi of the yogis, which runs up the spinal column.

When, at the time of Creation, God separated me from himself, I heard him say: “Am I not your God?”* “Indeed you are,” cried my soul, reassured. Since then has my heart flowered. With the inner urge to return Home, Giving me not a moment of calm here on earth. May doom strike this world! It robs souls on their way to God. The world has never accepted his lovers; They are persecuted and left to cry in pain.

As they merge into the oneness of God. I sacrifice myself to the one. Hu always reverberates in my heart. it also stands for God. destitute in the next. Accursed is life in this world. and therefore means ‘one who abdies in God’ Hu is within. Those who have not realized God will wander. The name Bahu is made up of ba (with) and Hu (God). who pervades the universe in the form of that Sound or Word. But watch the lovers dance with ecstasy. O Bahu. The wound in my heart aches constantly With the unabating pain of Hu’s love. • Some sufi mystics divide the inner journey into fourteen stages or realms. Homeless in this world. The darkness of ignorance departs From the heart lit by Hu. . Twice as accursed are they who are attached to it.* Chambers of light – ablaze With the profusion of God’s light. Hu symbolizes the resonant Sound. Hu is without. Those who have not dedicated their lives to God Shall suffer the unrelenting blows of destiny. Word or Kalma. Who has realized the significance of Hu. at last. Within my heart are fourteen realms.I have. present and future Pass before my eyes. Abominable is this sly world – It can even prompt a father to kill his own son. grasped the beginning and the end: I have seen the whole sectacle of past.

. as some closed to blink. Hanging between life and death My heart burns in the fire of separation from him. Religion is quite unaware of the spiritual plane To which love can raise us. O Lord. I would gaze at my Master with untiring zeal. how I wish that every pore of my body Would turn into a million eyes – Then. Were my whole body festooned with eyes.Those who have renounced this world Will enjoy the delights of the garden That is eternally in bloom. Even more at what they are willing to yield. Believers pray to God for the protection of faith. says Bahu: I shall mortgage my religion for it. O. a glimpse of my Master Is worth millions of pilgrimages to the holy Ka’ba! I offer my prayer in the temple of my heart – The only true place to worship God. I am ashamed at what they ask for. others would open to see! But even then my thirst to see him Might remain unquesnched. I bow in obeisance. I tender my prayer without break in its repetition. O Bahu. keep my love for you ever fresh. What else am I to do? To me. I stand in supplication. But few pray for the gift of his love.

O Bahu. Where then is Bahu to find Hu? He has wounded his own heart. O Bahu. a humble man. He has tortured his own soul With austerities of all manner.The path indicated by the Prophet is true. .* • A faqir is a beggar. a religious mendicant. Hu (God) is within. a dervish. Having read millions of books. Hu is without. Only those who abide in realms beyond space Deserve to be called ‘faqir’.But the name ‘faqir’ befits only him. Hu pervades everything. their faces pale. but in Sufi parlance a faqir is one who has attained the highest goal in spirituality. With worship of all kinds. Lovers constantly sigh in grief. He has also come to be called ‘wise’. Whose very grave breathes life!* • The body is a greave in which the soul stays buried until awakened by the kalma or Word of God. What has become of these faces That once beamed with youth and vivacity? Love is like musk that cannot stay hidden: Its fragrance cannot but reveal its presence. a God-realized man. O Bahu: Following it one can find God Their eyes sleepless.

Of all sinners I am indeed the most sinful. They have read thousands of books. Millions fear the torment of hell. In this world the learned are filled with satanic pride.Useless is all prayer. it is also a place where all of one’s wishes are fulfilled. ‘love’. They have come to be known as great scholars. But in my Lord’s protection lies my honour. they could not grasp – So helplessly they wander in delusion. you can pray the whole night through To supplement your daily prayer. Vast is the gulf between love and intellect.* A lover’s throat is always under the knife. If you have not died before your death. But they are robbed and maligned in the world beyond. But if your heart is not purified. . You can fast. • In muslim belief paradise is a place of carefree happiness and hoy. But lovers turn their backs even on paradise.If you don’t have the Master’s presence within. But at the alter of the Friend He rejoices in being a sacrifice. You will not feel God’s presence within. You can also perform numerous acts of charity. futile is all chanting. Bahu. chanting in group prayers will avail you nothing. But the one word. You will not attain acceptance in God’s court. beauty and abundance.

Yet my soul always thirsts for more. A tide of love has surged in the ocean of Unity.Those who have not purchased love In the marketplace of this life. But those who have not prepared themselves Cannot open their hearts to it. Will always be losers in this world and the next. Gaining nothing. whereas an idol house is a symbol of heresy because praying to an idol is considered a sin against God. none but the ignorant will take this lightly. Deep have I drunk from the ocean of Oneness. when they learn the prayer of love. O Bahu. O Bahu. In Sufi literature ‘Idol temple’ is used as a metaphor for the eye centre. O Bahu. Only tears of blood can pave the way to God.* While others pore over scriptures in mosques. the spiritual heart. The pure are never contaminated Even while they live in this polluted world. You wil be able to renounce the world Only when you find the treasure of devotion. True renunciation will only occur When you beg for the Lord’s grace In the begging bowl of your heart. . Some merge with the Beloved’s form In the idol house [of their hearts]. Scholars renounce their ‘superior’ learning. • In Muslim belief a mosque is the house of God. which contains the radiant image of the Master. the object of inner worship.

They may not prostrate themselves in temples. They may not be Sufis nor be Safis. They have never learned to prostrate themselves in love.A seeker can quickly become a Saint When he loses himself in love: His self becomes subdued and friendly. They alone are blessed with true love Who have sacrificed their all for their Beloved. His heart becomes refined and transparent As he sacrificed his self to the Beloved. bold in your step. Both within yourself and without You will then hear the reverberating strains of Hu. shake off the load of ego. hence. Those who are dyed deep in the indigo of religion Will never accept the crimson of God’s love: Priests are stuck in rituals. Whose very graves breathe Life. Every pore of your body will repeat the Name of Allah. One must. Only they may be called faqirs. Only then will you find God. Be steadfast in your faith. With every breath of your life.Of life itself-for without dying in love. The goal of life cannot be attained! Countless other means have I tried and failed. O Bahu. O Bahu. .

Ever since I correctly bowed my head* At your doorstep. Among them will be the scarlet poppy* In whose delicate petals will shine a subtle mystery. You would rather part with your head Than the secret of your heart. • By correctly bowing one’s head in prayer. The buds of mystery will unfold Into the blossoms of revelation. I make myself a sacrifice to anyone Who has preserved God’s love with his life. Submit yourself at the Master’s feet.If you desire to attain the oneness of God. • The secret poppy is compared to a lover’s heart owing its colour. Once you have drunk from the cup of love. O Lord. the eye of the heart. the third eye. . I have dedicated my life to your court – I have sought no other court since. half-hearted in their approach Will be deprived in both the worlds. When the Master casts his merciful glance on you. delicate petals and dark spot in the centre which signifies burning in separation. Someone who is chaste by does not love the Lord Is polluted in both mind and spirit. O Bahu. This dark spot also symbolizes nuqta-i-suvaida. Bahu means meditating according to the instructions of one’s Master. O Bahu. Those divided in their loyalties.

the spiritual heart.Such was the love I cultivated in my heart. Only then did I attain the goal of life. While others continue to be isolated in the mosque. I then placed my soul in his protection. whereas an idol house is a symbol of heresy because praying to an idol is considered a sin against God. an ounce of love Weighs more than tons of religious faith. O Bahu! • In Muslim belief a mosque is the house of God. O Bahu! In the court of the Lord.” These words opened my eyes to reality.Some achieve union in the idol house [of their hearts]. Those who have not sacrificed their all for the Friend Will never meet him. Reading of scriptures. worship and rituals Are all barren and fruitless practice. the object of inner worship. And I fixed my attention on the Lord. . In Sufi literature ‘Idol temple’ is used as a metaphor for the eye centre. which contains the radiant image of the Master. Having thus bequeathed my soul to him.* Only those who radily offer their heads To the alter of God win the game of love. My Master taught me a lesson: “Any moment you are negligent in rememrance of God is a moment spent in denial of God. I died before death – to live in him.

I sacrifice myself to those Masters. with but one glance. hearts. Frogs and fish would find him. Would realize him too. If God were found through nightly vigils. Only if you die before your death. which are shorn for their wool. Absorbed in his love. they dedicate Every breath of their lives To remembrance and contemplation of him. If God could be found through calibacy. Castrated bulls should also discover him. If God were realized by cutting off your hair. God is realized by those. If God could be found by bathing in holy waters. Who. Those who are blessed with God’s love Utter not a word about their condition. noble of intent. O Bahu. Infuse life into dead hearts. . O Bahu. O Bahu.Without a Master nothing will be achieved Even if you read your own prayers the whole night long. bats and owls would find him. bodies and souls Are all engaged in the inner mystic practise. Those who have found the Lord Through their contemplation on Alif Do not read the holy Qur’an. Their minds. Sheep and goats. Who are pure of heart. They live by the love of God As the veil of ignorance is lifted from their eyes. Will you attain God.

O Bahu. I prayed standing in water. But all I had longed for was fulfilled. O Bahu. I spent myself Offering prayers five times a day. I went on pilgrimage to Mecca. When my Master cast his merciful glance on me. But I could not stop the wondering of my mind. O Bahu. O Bahu! But when the Essence is freed from its attributes. Who merge themselves in the oneness of God. I sacrifice myself to those. As long as you proudly pamper your ego. Only when you die while you are still alive. Then Hu resounds within and without. You call yourself a faqir. No trace of Bahu can be found. A heart that fails To experience the presence of the divine Will continue to be poorly evolved. The clock of piety you wear will never suit you. Yet you don’t even know how to dissolve your self in God! If you don’t kill your self first.he is lost in Hu! . The name ‘faqir’ will benefit you. Becoming their very slaves.Even heaven and hell wait on them.But I failed to ascertain that ‘one thing’. The presence of God becomes evident. You will not realize God. I fasted for thiry days. I roamed the forests in search of God.

No one who entertains love of the world Can ever become a faqir. Or like a river that cannot be stopped in its course. When your heart advances in contemplation of God. which cannot be hid behind one’s fingers. In this world they live spiritually bankrupt. There is no distance left between us. The love of God is like the fragrance of musk – Even a thousand wrappings cannot hold it in. A heart among hearts:* The heart that is sublime beyond comprehension. O Bahu! They have put God’s name on sale Just to make a living. selling their honour. Like monsoon clouds they’re continously on the move With books under their arms. They read the scripturee in loud. My Friend is in me. The priest thrives on self-promotion. fervent strains For a lucrative commission. they go to the one beyond. In form and beauty it is the symbol of perfection. The temple of my heart will illumined with his light. When I contemplated on my true Firend In the privacy of my inner self. It will comprehend how there is unity in diversity. Wherever they find a promising household. Love flourishes in that heart In which glows the Name of God. Or like the sun. . The heart is the essence of divinity in man. in my Friend am I. Stripped of all honour. The hafiz is proud of his learning.

foolish in their ways. • To “shift from house to house” is to shift from body to body in the cycle of transmigration.• In Sufi parlance. Without remembrance of God’s Name. Repitition and contemplation will not achieve the goal. Only dwellers of realms beyond time and space Can lose themselves in God’s love. One stays caught in this false drama of life. all thirst. Only someone whose heart is pierced By the arrows of his love Can sacrifice his self and merge in God. the spiritual heart of our very being. It is beyond all comprehension! . O Bahu. Unless the self is sacrificed and lost in God’s love. People who seek the world are like dogs – In its pursuit they shift from house to house. They cannot understand that what they really need Is the water of life-to satisfy all hunger. Devoid of good sense. Anyone who fails to find the beloved Friend Will remain bereft of love in both worlds.* Greedily they pounce on bones – They have wasted their lives Fighting over worldly things. the heart means the eye centre. the third eye. The path of the Masters is the highest of all. O Bahu.

Begging for the Master’s grace. I could only truly renounce the world After I had met my exalted Master. These are all but acts of vanity and self-promotion! You have failed to recognize the beloved Friend Who always lives within you. . prayers and rites of abstinence Only end in confusion. A thousand times have I gone on pilgrimage to Mecca. O Bahu.There are neither discussions nor expositions Nor stories from the past. God is not found through such means. a denial of God. Yet my soul thirsts for more and more. Tears of blood pave the way to God. Love of this world is sheer idolatry. Endless fasts. And acts of prostration have worn me out. knows the real secret.On this path there is neither teaching Nor learning from books. O Bahu! None but the ignorant will take this lightly. Deep have I drunk from the ocean of oneness. Only the one who knows the mystic art Of dying while living. But that did not end the wanderings of my mind. Let no one trust its loyalty. You will save yourself from rites and rituals. I found the mystic path When I held the beggar’s bowl in hand. prayers and worship. Fasting. when you lose your being in God.

O Bahu. This Word is the breath of our lives. The knowledge real and true! Wielding the swerd of God’s will They slay their ego with God’s love. But all the objectives of life are met. Where Bahu lives! Like a gardener who nurses his seedlings. Those who find the water of eternal life Acquire divine wisdom. Other than the Word nothing exists! It brings life. In it lie all the secrets of God! May God’s grace descend on Shorekote. O Bahu! My Master has explained to me The reality of living in the heart: It is called Ism-i-A’zam. (the Word of God) It is the divine mystery. When the Master bestows a merciful glance! Only those who practise his true Name Know how to sing God’s praises. it causes death.Nor did my retreats to the seclusion of the forest Bring me the enlightenment I had sought. The Master always tends and protects his disciples: He nourishes them from his court With his merciful glance. O Bahu. . They acquire through inner revelation. Someone who shows you the Lord within your body Deserves the name ‘Master’.

Priests and scholars allow no one to find it. How can people driven by blind impulse find it? The dog of ego must be slain and minced into bits By the repetition of God’s Name. And your soul can have The vision of its own divine Essence. Says Bahu. I wander around. While the unenlightened go on pilgirmage to Mecca. They throw stones and rocks. I have found my Lord within my heart. The blind and ignorant mock and jeer. I see him in my heart. the beggar at his Master’s door: There are bountiful treasures within my heart. Hard to find is the narrow path that leads to God. worn down with the pain of longing. Heaven and earth become slaves of anyone. Lovers have only discovered this strait path By keeping out of their sight. I see my Beloved in the world outside. Practised with love.Lofty are the portals of religion. Only lovers know the secret path to the Lord. When I look within. You can realize God with the repition of the Name. . Who has realized the Essence within himself. O Bahu. with every breath of one’s life. they persecute Saints.

I can find no place that is bereft of love. O Bahu. Nor will it let me have any rest. Love has entrenched itself at my door. it won’t sleep. Reason and logic are completely forgotten. Like a spoiled child. Who has revealed to me the secret of God. You can only acquire ultimate knowledge of God After you put away the scriptures. It demands the impossible of me: It wants summer fruit in the dead of winter. Unrelenting. . we were with him.Where can I find such a thing? When love decides to call you. Love considers me a weakling. I make myself a sacrifice to the Master. it charges at my heart. I see nothing but love wherever I look. Priests are no help there Nor is any knowledge of the scriptures.Intellect and wisdom find no foothold Where the secrets of unity in God are revealed. Considering me frail and helpless. When God ordained the Creation. You can only merge your self in the Absolute When the Master reveals the divine secret. I was blessed to meet a perfect Master Who opened the sealed window of my heart. O Bahu. Overwhelmed by its onslaughts.

Removing all traces of dirt from the disciple’s soul. For they can.We possessed his qualities. But unlike the washerman who needs soap. Their enemies have no chance against them. Turn base metal into gold. Separated. They need practise no alchemy. The Master purifies with his glance. O Bahu. We were unsullied in our native state. I sacrifice myself to the one.Their Friend is always by their side. we were of his essence.It was our satanic ego that defiled us all. . O Bahu! Lovers who completely renounce the world Become contented and free from want. now we wander around searching for him. Let the one who can permeate every pore of my being Be my Master. A perfect Master scrubs his disciples As a washerman rubs and beats dirt out of clothes. Who makes his Master the core of his life. Trapped in physical bodies we now cry in pain. O Bahu. Once we lived in the realm of pure spirit. with but one glance.

Like a pilgrim circling the shrine of Ka’ba. A visit to my Master is.Where before. O Bahu! If it were. Love has pulled out huge trees of worldly attachment By the root. If you die by practising God’s real Name. I am restless. Like a devout Muslim’s pilgrimage to Mecca. There is no other way you can die the death That promises dying while living. My master is indeed the gateway to God’s mercy. even the worst storm Wouldn’t dislodge a leaf. Ever since the Lord ordained the Creation. O Bahu. Love is not child’s play. everyone would have become a lover of God. This is my love ever rejuvenated. My life revolves around my Master. Love has dissolved huge rocks of carnal passion As though they were salt.As the Khizr who has conquered death. in my longing to merge in Hu! Day and night my heart burns in his remembrance. Ever since I last saw that gateway to his court.When you attach yourself to the Lord Alla’hu All your worldly involvements are at once ended. Nearness changes into oneness with him. As the Creator who lives in human form. Death will become synonymous with merging in him. When the soul merges in the Lord. . for me. Bahu.Thus is my pilgrimage ever renewed. My Master has lived forever.

They only upset the peace and quiet of early morning. through the Royal Vain. I hear its melodies. A thousand miles away is my Master’s abode. Whoever realizes the oneness of God Will always progress on his spiritual journeyHe finds the Lord nearby. When I plug my ears with my fingers. It’s of little consequence if he’s physically out of sight. My eyes are longing for a glimpse of him: Without seeing. But I always see him nearby. My Master has taught me a lesson: It repeats itself-without me repeating it. He puts an end to the problems of life forever. He will transform the barren ground of your heart Into fertile soil. Then reveal to you the path to God. First he will drive the wolf from your door. My heart is his real home.You should only choose someone as your Master Who bestows the blessings of both worlds on you. Without learning. In countless forms he reveals himself to me. In every heart abides the Beloved. If a Master has not accomplished this for you In this very life. I see his radiant face. Spiritual life does not consist Of loud prayers and frenzied dancing. O Bahu. so the seed of God’s Name can grow. You can be sure he is feeding you false promises. .

O Bahu. Nor am I an expounder of Qur’anic law. lovers don’t pray in temples. Nor have I been a devout worshipper in a mosque. No one ever found him through learning Or by knowing the scriptures.I roamed far and wide in a fruitless search. I never met him through bathing in holy waters. But they never take a break from their devotions And are always in communion with the Lord within. Absorbed in the essence of the Lord. I am not a priest. O Bahu Not Hindu’s no Muslims. They alone may be called mystics.Walking on water is not spirituality Nor is praying on mats suspended in mid air. I am neither scholarly nor virtuous. They feign ignorance to conceal their wisdom. Nor can he be found in the holy shrine of Ka’ba. This world is but a false drama Unless union is attained with God. But I was rid of all my hopelessness and pain When I put myself in my Master’s hands. I need not heavenn. I fear not hell. I have never fasted for the thrity days of ramzaan. O Bahu. . Who have enshrined the Friend in their hearts God doesn’t live in the highest heaven.Free of religious ties.

Formal prayer and prostration are feeble pursuits. I have never escaped to a mosque. Who are deceptive of intent. The Lord lives nearby but seems so far away: You don’t know how to look for him within! Nothing will be achieved by looking outside.* I don’t do forty-day retreats.In no time has he transported me to the Lord! • A kind of hindu mendicant with matted hair and bells. Only they go on pilgrimage to Mecca Who are not wanted at home. My Master has taught me a precious lesson: The moment you have forgotten to remember God Is the moment you have spent in denial of God! O. . professing their devotion. I am not a yogi. O Bahu. other than to save food. Fasting has little merit. what a marvel my Master has performed. I am not a jangam. O Bahu.I sacrifice myself to anyone. Nor have I ever rattled the beads of a rosary. When you remove all the coverings of dirt. Only they pray loudly. Who eneters the arena of love and wins its game.He lives right in your own backyard! All the veils will be lifted. But those who have found God’s Name in their hearts Care not to fast nor prostrate themselves in formal prayer. a worshipper of Shiva. And your heart shines like a mirror.

You will never be worthy of meeting God. O Bahu: Not only distance from him But even nearness to him Has become irrelevant! There is but one moment in your life that is a friend. Like a theif shifting from house to house. O Bahu. *That one moment is so charged with power That it surmounts The effect of those millions of adversaries. Mystics live in this world as Hu personified.Beyond religion. Beyond life and death. If you explore the path within yourself. Others wasted their time with scriptures in mosques.The ocean of oneness overflowed with love. They practise the Name that is the essence of God. If you have not sacrificed your all for him. They live in Hu. But when their hearts were touched by God’s love. Anyone who misses that moment wastes his entire life. But still people went thirstyThey didn’t open their hearts.* How can those who don’t know the mystery of God Know the value of love? . Against the millions that are your foes. Beyond belief and unbelief. through the Royal Vein. These scholars denounced their learning. He now lives in me and I in him. Some merged with the Lord through idol worship. You will find God nearby.

Then. • • The particular moment in the life of a seeker when he is initiated by a Master into the secrets of God. ‘From house to house’ is to shift from body to body in the cycle of transmigration. The foes are those moments that are spent in worldly pursuits that take one away from God. You will repeat the Name of Hu constantly. You will never be driven from house to house. in an bliss of love. Only when your soul merges in the essence of the Lord Will you deserve the name ‘Bahu’.If you anchor your hopes in your true Home. . You will only meet the unrivalled Beloved If you offer your head on the altar of his love. Devoting every breath of your life In contemplation of him.

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