Fihi Ma Fihi
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The Fihi Ma Fihi (Persian: فیه مافیه; from Arabic: فیه ما فیه), "It Is What It Is" or "In It What Is in It") is a Persian prose work of a famous 13th century writer, Rumi. The book has 72 short discourses.
The title and origin of the book
According to J. M. Sadeghi the title "Fihi ma fihi" has appeared on a copy dated 1316. Another copy of the book dated 1350 has the title Asrar al-jalalieh. Rumi himself in the fifth volume of Masnavi-i Ma'navi mentions that
بد میان زاهد و رب الوری
که زمین و آسمان پر نور شد
در مقالات آن همه مذکور شد
which most likely refers to this book. The title Maghalat-e Mowlana of copies of the book published in Iran follows this.
Not much is known about the publication time and the writer of the book. According to B. Forouzanfar, the editor of the most reliable copy of the book, it is likely that the book was written by Sultanwalad, the eldest son of Rumi, based on manuscripts and notes taken by himself or others from the lectures of his father on Masnavi-i Ma'navi.
In the Essence of Rumi, John Baldock states that Fihi Mafihi was one of Rumi's discourses written towards the end of his life. Rumi lived from 1207 to 1273 so Fihi Mafihi was likely written some time between 1260 and 1273 by Rumi himself.
This book is one of the first Persian prose books after the so-called Persian literature revolution (enghelāb-e adabi). Moreover, the book has become an introduction to the Masnavi. Also many concepts in Sufism are described in this book in simple terms.
The book has been (freely) translated into English under the title Discourses of Rumi by A. J. Arberry in 1961 and consists of 71 discourses. An authoritative translation by Dr. Bankey Behari was published in 1998 under the title Fiha Ma Fiha, Table Talk of Maulani Rumi (DK Publishers, New Delhi), ISBN 81-7646-029-X.
- "حکایت شیخ محمد سررزی غزنوی قدس الله سره" in Masnavi-i Ma'navi.
- Discourses of Rumi (PDF; 695 KB)
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