Tuesday, November 29, 2005

a teasing smile

Harmony itself creates our discord.

The teasing smile inside creates my scowl.

This royal falcon wears an owl's face.

The very jaws of death hold life's long grace.

#1361: From Rumi's Kolliyaat-e Shams-e Tabrizi

Search word: create

I've been discussing with friends the creative power of God and I sought Rumi references to creation. The theme of harmony and discord is pertinent to my recent concerns. I'm aware, for example, that I'll be creating my own disturbance by making waves over the party noise. The seeds of discord have now been sown. I believe, however, that only discord can create harmony. This is well explicated in M. Scott Peck's The Different Drum : Community Making and Peace in which appeasement and empty diplomacy are shown to be quite useless. An open and honest admission of grievance is a better starting point to achieving true community through communication.

In a general sense, Rumi is continuing the theme here of one extreme flowing into the other, much like the Taoist idea of Yang, in its fullness, returning to Yin and vice versa. Rumi loves to relate it to real life, to familiar situations and concrete objects.

For me also, the teasing smile intrigues. It is a ploy I use a lot and it does indeed create many a scowl. I don't have Rumi's insight on this. If I did, the scowl would not so bewilder me. I'll observe this situation more closely next time it happens and try to see how it relates to the theme in this verse.

Having now done that, I see it relating to ideas of hope and expectation. It is like the advertiser's "teasing smile". We are promised joy and contentment but the reality is that the product advertised is a dud in that regard (although it may be effective in the more restrictive way for which it was intended). I think this is why a Shahryar comes to hate women and, through them, to hate life itself. (It can also go the other way around: A man who has come to hate life will hate women.)

That scowl, that disappointment and cynicism, are our autumn and winter and it follows naturally from our spring and summer.


At Wednesday, 30 November, 2005, Blogger Bob Hoeppner said...

I don't see how anyone can hate women. Though I can see not wanting to be around an ex-girlfriend.

At Wednesday, 30 November, 2005, Blogger Arizona said...

The feeling of being in love results in our asking or expecting more from a relationship than the other can realistically give. It's good that you confine feelings of disappointment, perhaps even hostility, to an ex-girlfriend. Some men do make a more generalized leap.


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