Saturday, February 07, 2009

Mary pregnant

From Sunlight today, an interesting snippet from the Masnawi by the Helminskis:
The Universal Soul met a separate soul
and placed a pearl on her breast.
Through such contact the soul, like Mary,
became pregnant with a heart-winning messiah.

Mathnawi II: 1183-1184
Version by Camille and Kabir Helminski

This comes from Book II, STORY IV. The Falcon and the Owls., where it is rendered thus by Whinfield:
Universal Soul had connection with Partial Soul,
Which thence conceived a pearl and retained it in its bosom.
From that connection, like Mary,
Soul became pregnant of a fair Messiah;
Not that Messiah who walked upon earth and water,
But that Messiah who is higher than space. *
Next, as Soul became pregnant by the Soul of souls,
So by the former Soul did the world become pregnant;
Then the World brought forth another world,
And of this last are brought forth other worlds.
Should I reckon them in my speech till the last day
I should fail to tell the total of these resurrections.

Abridged and Translated by E.H. Whinfield [1898]
* i.e., the spirit of the Prophet Muhammad, whom the Sufis identify with the Primal Soul.

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