culture

girl seeker: sufism + the universe within

28 Jan 2015

two weeks ago, when i was in asheville, i started reading a book by eric weiner – man seeks god. i also wrote a blog post announcing that i was going to journey with the author on his search for god, by blogging my own journey of contemplation as i read though the book. you can find that blog post {here}. each wednesday i want to process, share, and think about each chapter that i read as the author explores different religions/non-religions. last week i had just arrived to sweden + was in the midst of serious jetlag and shock. since i was so emotionally + physically spent, i decided to wait until this week to begin this journey. now, i am completely ready!


i must admit. i know nothing really about sufism, an ancient mystical part of islam, except for the fact that rumi, an inspiring poet + mystic from the 13th century, was a sufi. i have never read any of rumi’s works, but i have been inspired by his sayings + quotes that i have come across. in fact, i’ve thought of him as one of my go-to people when i need to find some words to bring me a breath of fresh air.

here are some amazing quotes. see what you think:

“do not feel lonely. the entire universe is within you.”

“stop acting so small. you are the entire universe in motion.”

“what you seek is seeking you.”

“love is the bridge between you + everything.”

“put your thoughts to sleep. do not let them cast a shadow over the moon of your heart. let go of thinking.”

“when you do things from you soul, you feel a river moving in you, a joy”

the thing about rumi, and about sufism that seems so right to me, is the belief that everything lies within, that everything is connected – we are connected with the universe. if you have read my blog every now + then, then you may have caught on that within is something that i mention quite a lot.

here is how wikipedia describes rumi:

“it is often said that the teachings of rumi are ecumenical in nature. for rumi, religion was mostly a personal experience and not limited to logical arguments or perceptions of the senses. creative love, or the urge to rejoin the spirit to divinity, was the goal towards which every thing moves. the dignity of life, in particular human life (which is conscious of its divine origin and goal), was important.”

it is a faith system that focuses on the inner life, while living in the midst of the world. think, concentration, balance, awareness. in a word: mindfulness. it is learning to shut down the left side of our brains – the analytical, rational, “western” – for just and bit to tune into the right side where we feel wholeness, creativity, and inspiration. actually, it’s really about learning to balance the two. and learning how to do that is wisdom, or aligning ourselves with the divine that is within us. that is the goal.

and soon, everything becomes sacred because you actually love everything =  you see not only the entire universe within yourself, you then see entire universe in everyone + in everything.

and that sounds like heaven to me.

winter tree

onwards + upwards! xoxo

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2 Comments

  • Reply Meghan 28 Jan 2015 at 21:15

    I too feel like I can understand what little I know about Sufism from the concepts of within and connection. I read this book last year and I’m so looking forward to your discussion. This chapter however was my personal favorite. Thanks for this series of posts!

  • Reply Liz 28 Jan 2015 at 21:18

    Oh, I am so excited that you’ve read the book – and I really look forward to hearing your thoughts as well! This was definitely my favorite of the 2 and half chapters I’ve read. Hope all is well with you and that you are enjoying wherever you are right now. 🙂 xo

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