Photo: Shaykh Muhammad Uthman Siraj al-Din al-Naqshbandi
‘From the other world.’
‘And where dost thou go?’
‘To the other world.’
‘What art thou doing in this world?’
‘I am making a game of it.’
Go seek, O mind, go seek Vrindâvan in your heart,
Where with His loving devotees Sri Krishna sports eternally.
Yogis sport (rama) in the eternal God, whose self is composed of sat (Being), chit
(Knowledge), and ananda (Bliss). Hence the term Râm means the Supreme God.
It is God Himself who is sporting in the form of man.
Man is made to be the plaything of God, and this, truly considered, is the best of him; wherefore also every man and woman should walk seriously, and pass life in the noblest of pastimes, and be of another mind from what they are at present....And what is the right way of living?...We ought to live sacrificing, and singing, and dancing, and then a man will be able to propitiate the Gods.
(Plato; Laws, 803)
I trow that whoso had grace to do and feel as I say, he should feel good gamesome play with him (God), as the father doth with the child, kissing and clasping, that well were him so!
(The Cloud of Unknowing, XLVI)
The soul is taken by God to a secret place where it must not ask nor pray for anyone, for God alone will play with it in a game of which the body knows nothing, any more than the peasant at the plough or the knight in the tourney; not even His loving mother Mary; she can do nothing here. Thus God and the soul soar further to a blissful place of which I neither can nor will say much. It is too great and I dare not speak of it for I am a sinful creature.
(Mechthild of Magdeburg)
'The Conference of the Birds
By Alexis York Lumbard (Adapter), Demi (Illustrator), Seyyed Hossein Nasr (Foreword)
Lavishly illustrated by award-winning illustrator, Demi, this magical and inspiring story of the adventures of a flock of wayfaring birds in search of their king will delight children with its tales of overcoming fear, physical hardship, and inner limitations. Based on an 800 year old classical parable, and retold by mother of three, Alexis York Lumbard, it will provide parents with a unique opportunity to teach moral and spiritual development to their children.