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The Illuminated Rumi Hardcover – Oct 13 1997

4.5 out of 5 stars 21 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Harmony; 1 edition (Oct. 13 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0767900022
  • ISBN-13: 978-0767900027
  • Product Dimensions: 22.6 x 1.8 x 28.7 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 821 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 21 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #24,270 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

Review

"Rumi has, to the recent amazement of many people in the Western culture as well as the Islamic culture, been able to speak directly to contemporary readers.  One of the greatest pieces of good luck that has happened recently in American poetry is Coleman Barks's agreement to translate poem after poem of Rumi.  Rumi, like Kabir, is able to contain and continue intricate theological arguments and at the same time speak directly from the heart or to the heart.  Coleman's exquisite sensitivity to the flavor and turns of ordinary American speech has produced marvelous lines, full of flavor and Sufi humor, as well as the intimacy that is carried inside American speech at its best."
--Robert Bly

From the Publisher

"Rumi has, to the recent amazement of many people in the Western culture as well as the Islamic culture, been able to speak directly to contemporary readers. One of the greatest pieces of good luck that has happened recently in American poetry is Coleman Barks's agreement to translate poem after poem of Rumi. Rumi, like Kabir, is able to contain and continue intricate theological arguments and at the same time speak directly from the heart or to the heart. Coleman's exquisite sensitivity to the flavor and turns of ordinary American speech has produced marvelous lines, full of flavor and Sufi humor, as well as the intimacy that is carried inside American speech at its best."
--Robert Bly

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
This is a truly beautiful book - the artwork laid out with the poems is masterful. Its far more than just a book of terrific poetry - which it is by the way! I don't know how these poems read in their original language and forgive me but in this case that doesn't even matter - the writings represented here are beautifully written. I'm so glad I bought it. Its a real joy to read and contemplate.
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By A Customer on March 22 2002
Format: Hardcover
This translation is better then other translations of Rumi that I have read. I have read this book several times and each time I discover something that I haven't seen befor. I would recomend this book highly.
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Format: Hardcover
Rumi, Coleman Barks, and Michael Green have collaborated on the most beautiful book I have ever seen (and I have seen a lot). Rumi's poetry trancends the artificial boundaries of religion, and speaks to anyone sincerely on the spiritual path. He captures the burning, the longing for the end of separation from God.
When I first became aware of Rumi's poetry, I was sure that it was about earthly love between humans here on earth. As I absorbed it more completely, I came to realize that all of his poetry, even his love poetry (which is very suitable for passing on to a loved one) is communicating with God.
Coleman Barks has done an amazing job of giving Rumi's work an accessable voice. He has truly given a gift for which we owe a huge debt of gratitude. Rumi provides the music, Coleman's translations provide the instruments.
Michael Green was obviously inspired by his collaborators to reach his own level of genius in the illustrations. I love the way he combines images from different cultures, different times, and from different disciplines both scientific and artistic! A desert oasis with a photo shot by the Hubble Space Telescope for the sky... The juxtaposition of fractal geometry with images from cultural art... I would gladly hang any of the original art from this book on the walls of my living room.
This book has been and continues to be my favorite gift to people who "get it," and I've probably handed out over 20 copies in the last two years. Do yourself a favor and buy it. I bet you'll be back for more copies.
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Format: Hardcover
A must read for the soul's journey homeward to the Self I read this work slowly, savoring the moments and the illuminations as sparks of awakening to my own soul.
I was introduced to Rumi's writings in January 1999 and I feel as though I have come home to an understanding that I could not always put into words.
As a writer/journalist myself, I find that often the words escape me, yet they are right outside of my mind's grasp. The writings/translations of Rumi and the pictorials in this book have moved me deeper than most work, inspiring me in my own world of words as I re-member to whom Rumi writes with such passion.Then, it brings me renewed passion for my own work.
I recently married a couple and used this book as part of the service. As a wedding present, I gifted the couple with this book. What a beautiful way for them to start their lives. I highly recommend this as a gift for others and for special occasions where you want to give a fine work both in art and literature.
On Mother's Day I shared this work with my oldest Son, age 26, who was also moved and he asked me to order this for him and his family...
Thank you Coleman Barks and Michael Green! I am deeply grateful to them for all they have contributed.
May we all live the messages of Rumi!
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By A Customer on March 17 2000
Format: Hardcover
This book obscures the bold spirit of Rumi with a facade of emotionally dominated wishful thinking. Rumi should challenge, confront, transport and dare the reader - but this book merely panders. The text is liberally sprinkled with irrelevancies and contains several interpolations, mistranslations and historical inaccuracies, indeed, blatant balderdash in a couple of places. The poetry is generally well rendered but is a pre-digested selection of the "soft bits" - the bones have been filleted out. One also gets the vague impression that the English language has been "dumbed down". The illustrations are well executed, except for the snapshot at the end, which is both irrelevant and uninteresting. This piece of self-indulgent drivel spoils an otherwise good collection of artwork. In summary, the reader will end up knowing more about Coleman Barks than about Rumi.
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By A Customer on June 8 2000
Format: Hardcover
I find some of the other rather pedantic reviews a bit troubling. I can, of course, appreciate that those who are more knowledgable about Sufism in general, and Rumi in specific, might be disappointed in what some obviously consider a lack of credentials on Mr. Barks part; however, as a relative newcomer to Sufism and the works of Rumi, I must say that this is an excellent place to start. No, perhaps the translation is not exact, but the combination of the magnificent illuminations, and the undeniable strengh and power of Rumi's poetry will move many newcomers like myself to do further, more in depth research and hopefully capture the true essence of the message. And isn't that the point? Start the neophytes slowly, so as not to overwhelm them; intrigue them, in order to guide them. Why else would I be here?
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