8 Responses

  1. To be devoid of unbelief and of religion [belief].
    The sound of one hand clapping. Doing by not doing. Many people seem to have grasped this, this bottle of wine.

  2. I visit your site daily. Your translations have become a highlight. I am disappointed when one does not appear at the head. I was prepared to write that these verses were an “antidote” to the political reality which follows them, but I think, more accurately, they are a helpful “complement”. Thanks.

  3. Fate is here the translation of Dahr or Time of God = Time when God is open and present to man. The origin is from Zoroastrian teachings that Time is a name of God. The Bride of Fate attracts and absorbs whoever She wishes. The process of being drawn near is interpretative as joy. This is the path from God to the creature.

    • Khayyam does have a number of godly quatrains, but this does not appear to be one of them. The bride of fate represents the much desired fortune that mankind is after. Khayyam asks her: “What dowry can I offer you to be mine”? She replies: “Your joyous heart is my dowry”. In other words, fortune belongs to the heart that is free of petty religious conflicts and whose creed is to drink wine and be happy.

      • E. H. Whinfield tried to produce a scientifically edited version of Khayyam’s works from 6 manuscripts and printed books in 1883. His text is the basis of these translations. Obviously, it is likely that some of the quatrains are wrongly attributed to Khayyam, since medieval manuscript traditions often erred in attribution. At the moment, I’m not interested in that issue. For much of the last millennium, “Omar Khayyam” has referred to a set of attitudes exemplified in the poems attributed to him, and that sensibility interests me, since it contradicts typical Western stereotypes of Muslims.

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