THE RUBAIYAT (Authoritative and Unabridged Edition for NOOK) by OMAR KHAYYAM The All-Time Worldwide Bestselling Collection of Philosophy and Poetry WORLDWIDE BESTSELLER The Complete & Unabridged Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám SUFI SUFISM [NOOK Book]
(Authoritative and Unabridged Edition for NOOK)
by OMAR KHAYYAM
The All-Time Worldwide Bestselling Collection of Philosophy and Poetry
The Complete & Unabridged Rubáiyát of Omar Khayyám
SUFI PHILOSOPHY SUFI POETRY SUFISM
ABOUT THE RUBAIYAT
The Rubaiyat, by Omar Khayyam, is the most famous work of Persian Sufi poetry ever translated into English. Their peculiar form of four lines, the first, second and fourth of which have the same rhyme, while the third usually (but not always) remains rhymelesswas first successfully introduced into Persian literature as the exclusive vehicle for subtle thoughts on the various topics of Sufic mysticism by the sheikh Ab Said bin Abulkhair. However, the Raubaiyat of Omar Khayyam differs in its treatment considerably from Ab Said. Although some of Khayyam's quatrains are purely mystic and pantheistic, most of them bear quite another stamp; they are the breviary of a radical freethinker.
Khayyam has often been called the Voltaire of the East. As far as purity of diction, fine wit, crushing satire against a debased and ignorant clergy, and a general sympathy with suffering humanity are concerned, Khayyam certainly reminds us of the great Frenchman; but there the comparison ceases. Voltaire never wrote anything equal to Omars fascinating rhapsodies in praise of love, and his passionate denunciations of a malevolent and inexorable fate which dooms to slow decay or sudden death and to eternal oblivion all that is great, good and beautiful in this world. There is a touch of Byron, Swinburne and even of Schopenhauer in many of his poems.
ABOUT SUFI PHILOSOPHY AND SUFISM
Sufism is defined by its adherents as the inner, mystical dimension of Islam. A practitioner of this tradition is generally known as a Sufi.
Classical Sufi scholars have defined Sufism as "a science whose objective is the reparation of the heart and turning it away from all else but God". Alternatively, in the words of one Sufi teacher, "a science through which one can know how to travel into the presence of the Divine, purify one's inner self from filth, and beautify it with a variety of praiseworthy traits".
Classical Sufis were characterised by their attachment to dhikr (a practice of repeating the names of God) and asceticism. Sufis have spanned several continents and cultures over a millennium, at first expressed through Arabic, then through Persian, Turkish and a dozen other languages.
Some mainstream scholars of Islam define sufism as simply the name for the inner or esoteric dimension of Islam. However, other scholars believe that the Sufi philosophy is universal in nature, its roots predating the rise of Islam and the other modern-day religions.
For some we loved, the loveliest and best
That from His rolling vintage Time has pressed,
Have drunk their glass a round or two before,
And one by one crept silently to rest
But helpless pieces in the game He plays
Upon this chequer-board of Nights and Days
He hither and thither moves, and checks ... and slays
Then one by one, back in the Closet lays
The Moving Finger writes: and, having writ,
Moves on: nor all thy Piety nor Wit
Shall lure it back to cancel half a Line,
Nor all thy Tears wash out a Word of it.
Omar Khayyám (1048–1131) was a Persian polymath: philosopher, mathematician, astronomer and poet. He also wrote treatises on mechanics, geography, mineralogy, music, climatology and Islamic theology.
Born in Nishapur, at a young age he moved to Samarkand and obtained his education there, afterwards he moved to Bukhara and became established as one of the major mathematicians and astronomers of the medieval period. He is the author of one of the most important treatises on algebra written before modern times, the Treatise on Demonstration of Problems of Algebra, which includes a geometric method for solving cubic equations by intersecting a hyperbola with a circle. He contributed to a calendar reform.
Al-Zamakhshari referred to him as “the philosopher of the world”. Many sources have testified that he taught for decades the philosophy of Avicenna in Nishapur where Khayyám was born and buried and where his mausoleum today remains a masterpiece of Iranian architecture visited by many people every year.
Outside Iran and Persian speaking countries, Khayyám has had an impact on literature and societies through the translation of his works and popularization by other scholars. The greatest such impact was in English-speaking countries; the English scholar Thomas Hyde (1636–1703) was the first non-Persian to study him. The most influential of all was Edward FitzGerald (1809–83), who made Khayyám the most famous poet of the East in the West through his celebrated translation and adaptations of Khayyám's rather small number of quatrains in the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam.
Omar Khayyám died in 1131 and is buried in the Khayyam Garden at the mausoleum of Imamzadeh Mahruq in Nishapur. In 1963 the mausoleum of Omar Khayyam was constructed on the site by Hooshang Seyhoun.