As a white woman unpacking a lot of mistakes, wrong thoughts and assumptions carried over througout my life, there's still a lifetime of learning ahead of me, and I'm okay with that. I'm trying to be a better, more aware person every day while I raise a daughter in this world who has both her own privilege and patriarchal misogyny to deal with. So while this story is an older one, I just ran across it tonight and it was another one of those wide eye-opening ones. The poet Rumi, whom everyone loves to quote, has had his own religion erased from so many of his words.
Granted, many people don't know that his original works, before their English translations, contain regular excerpts of Muslim scripture, which alters the meaning of the words and takes away from Rumi's original intention. But now that I know it, I'm going to seek out translations that include the originals when I read his work and remember that he was born in Afghanistan and a Muslim, a country and a religion despised by so many Westerners out of fear. If they truly wish to embrace his words of love they need to embrace them in their entire capacity.
What do you think of Rumi's work? Did you know about his religious references being written out of his translations?