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Ala al-Dawla Simnani - What Was

by Ala al-Dawla Simnani

English version by David and Sabrineh Fideler
Original Language Persian/Farsi

Once I was here,
but now "I" am not:

If there's really a "me,"
     it could only be you.

If any robe warms
and encompasses me now,
that very robe --
     it could only be you.

In the way of your love,
nothing was left --
neither body nor soul.

If I have any body --
If I have any soul --
then, without question,
     it could only be you.


-- from Love's Alchemy: Poems from the Sufi Tradition, Translated by David Fideler / Translated by Sabrineh Fideler
Poetry Chaikhana | Ala al-Dawla Simnani - What Was


Simnari was a Sunni  (I did not learn this until  just now, but most Sufis are drawn from the Shia community,)

He is said to have used "dualistic language" in speaking of the relationship of humans to God.,

"If there is really a 'me.'
   it could only be you."

That looks about as non-dual as a statement in a human language could get.

Of course, all language is dualistic, it uses words to distinguish one thing from another.
The essence and the manifestion have different names/
Desireless, the manifestations disappear.
Desiring, the essence seems to disappear.
In silence the manifestations disappear,
In talking the essence disappears.

If God were to say: "I am God," or some equivalent statement (I am who I will be.)  Ir would not be the same as a Sufi saying "I am God."
or a Hindu saying Atmen is Brahman.

(When/if Jesus said: "I and the Father are one,"  was he speaking as God or as a mystic?)

As humans we are stuck with dualistic languages as  means of trying to express non-duality.

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