The Fool's Errand
What wisdom was this, that the Object of all desire
caused me to leave my home joyously on a fool's errand,
so that I was actually rushing to lose the way
and at each moment being taken farther from what I sought--
and then God in His beneficence made that very wandering
the means of my reaching the right road and finding wealth!
He makes losing the way a way to true faith;
He makes going astray a field for the harvest of righteousness,
so that no righteous one may be without fear
and no traitor may be without hope.
The Gracious One has put the antidote in the poison
so that they may say He is the Lord of hidden grace.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
In cheh hekmat bud keh Qebleh-ye morâd
kardam az khâneh berun gomrâh o shâd
Tâ shetâbân dar zalâlat mi shodam
har dam az matlab jodâ-tar mi bodam
Bâz ân `ayn-e zalâlat-râ beh-jud
Haqq vasilat kard andar roshd o sud
Gomrahi-râ manhaj-e imân konad
kazh ruy-râ mahsad-e ehsân konad
Tâ na-bâshad hich mohsen bi vajâ
tâ na-bâshad hich khâyen bi rajâ
Andarun-e zahr teryâq ân Hafi
kard tâ guyand Zu al-Lotf al-Khafi
Mathnawi VI: 4339-4344
Version by Camille and Kabir Helminski
"Rumi: Jewels of Remembrance"
Threshold Books, 1996
(Persian transliteration courtesy of Yahyل Monastra)