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The Sensual Soul

Extract from the Masnawi of Rumi:

The dragon is thy sensual soul: how is it dead? It is (only) frozen by grief and lack of means.

If it obtain the means of Pharaoh, by whose command the water of the river (Nile) would flowom ,

Then it will begin to act like Pharaoh and will waylay a hundred (such as) Moses and Aaron.

Mûsâ (Moses) encounters a dragon that devours all the sheep in a valley near Midian, fol.

That dragon, under stress of poverty, is a little worm, (but) a gnat is made a falcon by power and riches. Keep the dragon in the snow of separation (from its desires); beware, do not carry it into the sun of ‘Iráq.

So long as that dragon of thine remains frozen, (well and good); thou art a mouthful for it, when it gains release.

Mortify it and become safe from (spiritual) death; have no mercy: it is not one of them that deserve favours;

A Double-sided leaf from a manuscript of Firdausi's Shahnameh: Rustam Killing the Dragon and Rustam about to kill the woman magician, signed by Mu'in Musavvir, Persia, Isfahan, late 17th century
Gouache heightened with gold on paper, each side with miniature and 20 lines or fewer of text within 4 columns separated by gold rules, margins ruled in colours and gold, side with Rustam killing the dragon with one heading in red, signature in the lower margin, numberd '16' in Persian on other side right hand margin paintings: 25 by 14cm. leaf: 30.5 by 19.54cm.

For (when) the heat of the sun of lust strikes upon it, that vile bat of thine flaps its wings.

Lead it manfully to the (spiritual) warfare and battle: God will reward thee with access (to Him).

When that man brought the dragon into the hot air, the insolent brute became well (again),

Living with herself, surrounded with her dragonG
Gouache, Aquarelle with gold on paper

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