The Shape of Ecstasy


A frenzied dervish, mad with love for God,

Sought out bare hills where none had ever trod.




Wild leopards kept this madman company —

His heart was plunged in restless ecstasy;




He lived within this state for twenty days,

Dancing and singing in exultant praise:




“There’s no division; we two are alone —

The world is happiness and grief has flown.”




Die to yourself — no longer stay apart,

But give to Him who asks for it your heart;




The man whose happiness derives from Him

Escapes existence, and the world grows dim;




Rejoice for ever in the Friend, rejoice

Till you are nothing, but a praising voice.



– Farid Ud-din Attar – 12th Century Sufi poet.


The Shape of Ecstasy is octagonal!




and how that came to be (from Wikipedia):

The Sultan saw Shah in his dream and wished that the saint come to Bidar. This dream according to many history books was realized, as when he received Shah he told his counsels, “If this is the same person I saw in my dream he should be carrying an octagon -shaped head cap”, and hence he was satisfied when Shah Khalilullah presented him with the cap. Today, even the Tomb of Shah is octagonal.

Categories: india, photo essay, photography | Leave a comment

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