Lover and Beloved PDF Print E-mail
Written by Laura   
Monday, 06 February 2012 18:54

Divine love painting

In the language of many traditions, God is referred to as the Beloved. This is especially true in the divine love poetry of the Sufis, in the language of Christian mystics and, the Bhakti poetry of India.

The devotees, the seekers of the Divine, are the Lovers. The ones who seek the Divine  through complete surrender to love.

The Beloved is often (though not always) thought of as male, while the Lover is typically described as female. This is because the individual soul in its quest for divine union must become utterly receptive and it hopes to become impregnated with the divine life.

 

Lover and Beloved in Sufi

THE SECRET SUBSTANCE OF DIVINE LOVE

- written by Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee, Ph.D., is a Sufi teacher and author

The mystical relationship of lover and Beloved is one of humankind's greatest secrets. It embraces the whole of creation and yet takes place within the human heart. The love affair of the soul with God is a passion that transforms the whole human being and reveals the hid-den face of the world. The mystical journey is an unfolding of this love affair, a giving of oneself to God through love. There is nothing other than God, and God's oneness is stamped within the heart. The mystical journey takes the wayfarer from duality back to oneness, from separation to an experience of being merged into His oneness.

But this journey is only possible because of a substance within the heart, which the Sufis call sirr. Without this substance there would be no journey and no spiritual awareness. Sirr belongs only to God and is a gift of God to those who love Him. Sirr is given for the sake of realizing the truth. It is a quality of Divine love that is hidden from the world because it does not belong to the world. Sirr means secret and belongs to the mystery of Divine love, of the relationship of lover and Beloved that takes place within the innermost chamber of the heart, what the Sufis call the heart of hearts. The Sufis say that it is this substance within the heart of hearts that is both the pilgrim and the path. This substance is the essence of His love for us.

Much of the work of the path is a process of preparation, an inner purification to enable the heart of the lover to contain His secret, without its being contaminated by the ego or lower nature, the nafs. When the disciple is ready, then the sirr is given from heart to heart, usually through the presence of a living master, a sat guru. This substance of Divine love is infused into the heart of the lover, and activated by Divine love.

Read the whole article here.

Romancing God: Contemplating the Beloved

By: Ramon Lull (courtesy of Jake Murray)

Love's paths are long and short. Love is clear, bright and pure, subtle yet simple, strong, diligent, brilliant and abounding in fresh thought and old memories...

They asked: Why don't you speak, and why are you thoughtful and perplexed?

The Lover answered: I am contemplating the beauties of the Beloved as well as the likeness between the joys and sorrows given to me by Love.

They asked: Was your heart or your love created first?

The Lover replied: My heart and my love were created together, for the heart was made for love and love for reflection.

They asked: Was your love born in the secrets of the Beloved or in the revelation of those secrets to men?

The Lover answered: Love makes no such distinction. Secretly, the Lover keeps hidden the Beloved's secrets, and secretly, he also reveals them. Yet, when they are revealed he keeps them secret still. Unrevealed, love's secrets bring anguish and grief; revealed, love brings fervour and fear. Because of this, the Lover is always sorrowful.

Love called his lovers and told them to ask from him the most desirable and pleasing gifts. They asked Love to dress them in his own clothes, so they might be more acceptable in the Beloved's eyes.

The Lover called out to everyone: 'Love commands you always to love: in waking and sleeping, in joy and sorrow, in gain and in loss. In whatever you do, you must love; for this is Love's first commandment.'

They asked, Fool of Love! When did you first meet Love?

The Lover replied: I first met Love when my heart was filled with thoughts and desires, sighs and griefs, and my eyes were filled with tears. Through my memory and understanding love taught me the wonderful ways of my Beloved. I received Love's teachings with love and hope, and I harbour Love's teachings in my heart with strength and wisdom.

The Beloved sang: The Lover does not know love very well if he is ashamed to praise his Beloved or is afraid to honour Him in places where he is dishonoured. If the Lover is impatient in his trials, he knows little of Love.

The Lover sent letters to his Beloved, asking him if there was anyone who would help him suffer and bear the trials that he endured for Him. The Beloved replied: I will not fail or deceive you.

-a fragment from ROMANCING GOD by Ramon Lull, trans Henry Carrigan Jnr (ISBN 1557252165)

Overview of the Book

A highly esteemed 13th-century Christian Catalan mystic, Lull wrote The Book of the Lover and the Beloved and The Art of Contemplation, and is thought of as a literary and spiritual forebear to John of the Cross and Teresa of Avila. Seeking union with God, Catalan mystic Ramon Lull (1232-1315) describes, in the ecstatic language of Love, the mystical ascent of the soul to God. Well-versed in the traditions of courtly love, Lull delivers a love letter to God in the devotional aphorisms of The Book of the Lover and the Beloved - a grand, dazzling poem consisting of 365 short meditations. With its exalted and lyrical prose, Lull's account of his desire for God will inspire readers on their own journeys. The Art of Contemplation offers an instructional guide for the mystical journey, covering topics such as prayer, the sacraments, and virtue. Mr. Carrigan's mild modernization of this classic will introduce Lull's lyrical spirituality to a whole new group of lovers of God.

Last Updated on Monday, 06 February 2012 20:10
 

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