Perfect Man in Rumi’s Perspective

Perfect Man in Rumi’s Perspective1


Dr Seyed G Safavi

London Academy of Iranian Studies – SOAS, University of London

23rd to 27th of June, FIDEM 2009 – Palermo, Italy


This article seeks to clarify the perspective of Rumi (1207-1273), who is one of the greatest Persian and Muslim Sufi poets of all time, on some of the dimensions of ‘Perfect Man’.  These include: 1) ‘his position in existence’; 2) ‘his attributes’ and; 3) ‘the mutual relations between Perfect Man and the spiritual wayfarer’.

One of the most important concepts of Rumi’s spiritual thought is that of Perfect Man, which is in relation to God, existence, spiritual wayfarering and guidance.

The Perfect Man is the vicegerent of Allah and is the reflection of His Essence. He is the ‘alchemist’, ‘elixir’, ‘spiritualist’, ‘the antidote of separation’, ‘the door of Divine mercy’, ‘the shadow of God’ and ‘the lion of Truth’.

All of the different dimensions of Perfect Man are in the state of perfection; these dimensions include ‘good speech’, ‘good acts’, ‘good ethics’ and ‘unique and exalted intuitive knowledge’. He has annihilated in Allah and has gained subsistence in Him. He is the symbol of patience, bravery, chivalry, generosity and justice.

Perfect Man is responsible for leading and guiding humanity. The spiritual wayfarer must heed to the commands and teachings of Perfect Man, and must be ‘observant of manners’. Five spiritual manners that the spiritual wayfarer must observe in relation to the sheikh or pir or Perfect Man are: 1) Purity of intention in relation to the pir; 2) Accepting the speech of the pir with desire and certainty; 3) Concealing the secrets of the pir; 4) Submitting to and having patience towards the commands of the pir; 5) Not objecting to the speech, acts and states of the pir. The Perfect Man cares about the spiritual wayfarers and guides them to the straight path.

Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, Jesus, Muhammad, ‘Ali, Hassan, Hussain and the Mahdi of Fatima are evident examples of Perfect Man. In each era, one Perfect Man must exist for leading and guiding humanity; the rest of the Divine Saints are his vicegerents in different places and societies.


This article seeks to clarify the perspective of Rumi (1207-1273), who is one of the greatest Persian and Muslim Sufi poets of all time, on some of the dimensions of ‘Perfect Man’.  These include: 1) ‘his position in existence’; 2) ‘his attributes’ and; 3) ‘the mutual relations between Perfect Man and the spiritual wayfarer’. On Rumi bibliography see Franklin Lewis work2 and on his thought see Prof William Chittic3 and Dr Safavi4 works.

The Position of Perfect Man in Existence:

Mystics consider Perfect Man as the main centre of the world5. Heaven and Hell are considered as elements of the reality of Perfect Man and are respectively opposite to Divine wrath and mercy. The reality and status of Perfect Man is above any form of thought or imagination, and is beyond the sphere of the thinking of regular human beings.

In the inner home of Divine Saints there is naught but Haqq (Allah). Therefore, neither the reality of Perfect Man is known and evident to the understanding and intellect of regular human beings, nor the Essence of Allah. Perfect Man is the complete and perfect manifestation of Allah, apart fromEssential Neccessity which is exclusive to Allah. The life of Perfect human beings before becoming manifested in the material world has been present in the infinite sea of Divine existence and generosity, and their spirit before entering this material world has benefited from Divine attention; thus, they have been acquainted with the realities and secrets of existence and, as such, are worthy of being the vicegerents of Allah. The spirits of Divine Saints were present before Allah’s consultation with the angels about the creation of human beings. When the angels were attempting to prevent the creation of human beings, the spirit of the mystics discreetly mocked them as the angels did not have the potential to understand the status of the vicegerent of Allah, for the spirits of the mystics were aware of the creations of Allah before their creation and were aware of their quiddity.

The spiritual reality of Perfect human beings is one. In terms of reality they are one, although in terms of their power of infleunce and their spiritual power, they are varied; just as the waves of the sea multiply and diversify by the wind, mystics are also diverse in terms of their bodies, although this diversity does not in any way affect their spiritual unity. In reality, the human spirits are a unified light, which after becoming appointed to different bodies, appear diverse and multiple. The one who pays attention to the diversity of bodies becomes afflicted with doubt concerning the reality of spirits, whereas spiritual dispersion and disunity is specific to animal spirits. The spirit that Allah blew into the human being, however, is the spirit of Perfect Man which is united; therefore, the spirits of Prophets and Divine Saints, which are devoid of the desires of the soul, are united.

As Allah has shone His light upon His creations, whoever receives this light goes to the right path and whoever does not receive it goes astray and into darkness. Thus, the whole of existence is a manifestation of the unified existence of Allah.

The heart of Perfect Man is a mirror in which Divine reality is reflected. The Prophets and Divine Saints are aware of the realities of the world and the reality of everyone and everything is evident to them, just as the daylight is a reflection of their inner light and the dark night is a reflection of their state of concealment, which conceals the faults of human beings. The illumination of Prophet Muhammad’s heart is to the extent that in the Holy Qur’an Allah has sworn upon the day light, as a manifestation of the spiritual light of Prophet Muhammad, for Allah never swears on anything transient. When Allah swears on the night in the Qur’an, it is also because of Prophet Muhammad’s attribute of concealment, and because his body concealed his inner light from people.

In each era there is a Perfect Man and the chain of the wilayah of the Prophet will continue till the Day of Resurrection. According to the Shi’a, Imam Mahdi of the children of Imam ‘Ali, is alive as the Perfect Man and will rise by the command of Allah for the protection of the Divine religion. Perfect Man, like Divine light and intellect, is the messenger of Allah. Perfect Man transfers the realities and wisdoms to the next wali and benefits the next wali by his light, for Divine Saints, in terms of their states of spiritual wayfaring and the degrees of discovering the Truth, have ranks which end in the Perfect Man. By reaching the high ranks through asceticism, the spiritual wayfarer, following the removal of the 700 fold veils, will reach a stage where he is present in the presence of Allah. By passing all the stages of the perfection of the soul and passing all the veils, the spiritual wayfarer becomes like the Sea of Divine Unity.

The world is never denied the presence of the vicegerent of Allah and the Perfect Man. In all eras amongst all nations, a Perfect Man is present as the warner and the giver of glad tidings, who establishes peace and destroys oppression. Perfect Man, by uniting lives, causes the purification of hearts and defeats war and enmity. As such, human beings become compassionate towards each other like a mother, as the Prophet addressed all of the Muslims as one person. Through the barakah of the presence of Prophet Muhammad, Muslims became a unified soul, without the presence of which they would have been each others’ enemies. For example, the ancient feud between the tribes of Aws and Khazraj was removed by the barakah of the being of the Prophet and the light of Islam, and by following the Divine teaching that “the believers are brothers to each other” they became each other’s brothers. Further, by destroying their diversities, they became like a unified body, just as the grapes which in appearance are separate from each other, by squeezing become a unified liquid. Perfect Man and imperfect man are opposed to one another, thus, through gaining perfection, imperfect man becomes a worthy companion for Perfect Man.

The degree of discovering the Truth for the Divine Saints is relative to their closeness to Allah; when they are closer to the Divine court, they reach the Divine grace without intermediation, as the world reaches the Divine grace through Perfect Man.

The reality of the Prophets and Divine Saints is the Muhammadan light, which is the symbol of the Divine names and attributes. By benefitting from this light the Prophets reach the state of fana (annihilation) and baqa (subsistence) and unmediated meeting with Allah, and the mystics, with the aid of the Muhammadan light, come to possess countless ranks and kiramat (miracles).

In the state of greatness Perfect Man is like the shining sun, the warmth of whose being warms the heavens and the spiritual wayfarers.

The sun of this world is limited to rising and setting at a specific place, whereas the Sun of Haqq is unlimited and infinite. The beings of the world are portrayals of the light of Haqq, for the being of Haqq does not have a sunset and sunrise and is constant. Although human beings are like the smallest particles of the Divine ray, in both worlds they are such radiant suns that nothing can place a shadow over them, darkening them. Yet still, Perfect Man rotates around the Sun of Reality and is in need of it.

With the attention that the Sun of Reality (Allah) pays the Perfect Man, He separates Perfect Man from other things and makes him aware of Himself. The Sun of Reality is aware of all the causes; losing hope in Him and cutting off from Him is impossible, as the separation of the human being from the sun and the fish from water is impossible. As such, the spiritual life of Perfect Man is also completely dependent on the Sun of Reality and it is not possible for Perfect Man to sever himself from Him, for the Perfect Man knows that without being aware of Haqq, he will reach nowhere.

Allah is always with the Perfect Man. The spirit of Perfect Man, which is in constant connection with and nearness to Allah, is connected to his body, although the two are not of the same genus.

Common sense or sensual perception is a phenomenon which is present in all human beings, regardless of whether they are good or bad. The reason for the spiritual perfection and strength of angels in comparison to regular human beings is that they are above common sense, but the spirit of human beings is stronger and more perfect than that of angels, and this was the reason for the prostration of the angels to Adam, for that which is superior never prostrates to that which is inferior.

All the realities and secrets are congregated within the human being, whereas angels do not possess such comprehensiveness. The spirit and life and realities of all the creations follow the life which surpasses the limits of the intellect and intuition and joins infinity. As such, the fish of the sea become the needle of the clothes of the mystic Ibrahim Adham, just as the string follows the needle. Hence, the grades of beings which have life are animals, human beings, angels and Perfect Man, who is superior and better than all of them. The Perfect wali, by relying upon his wilayah and infleunce, places all the beings that are below him under his influence.

The context of the twelfth discourse of the second book of Mathnawi6 is the stage of Haqq al-Yaqin of Perfect Man. The unity of knowledge, knowledgeable and known becomes clear through Divine wisdom, and the best human being reaches unity with Haqq. Reaching ‘Ayn al-Yaqin is conditional on belief in the science of ta’wil (esoteric interpretation), and moving from the exoteric to the esoteric. The function of this stage is the creation of social and spiritual unity within the society of believers despite having outward differences.

The Attributes of Perfect Man:

Perfect human beings do not need the tools of empirical thinking, for they are drowned within the sea of Divine ma’rifah. They reach salvation and spiritual success through love, asceticism and by intuitive ma’arifah. In this way, from the appearance of sensory phenomena the mystics reach beyond sense, whereas this form of sensory perceptions for non-mystics is simply an outward observation, for their thought belongs to the past or the future. However, since Perfect human beings are free from the limits of time and their thinking is not limited to a specific time, the problem of knowing is solved for them and they do not require the tools which are needed by regular human beings. As such, the spirit of the mystics, which is free from the limitations of time, is capable of the observation of the being of objects before their creation. Perfect human beings see all beings in any state, before their appearance in the world of meaning, and know of the good and bad of everything; in reality, their spirit has drunk from the pure Divine drinks before creation. They see the opposite of each thing in its being and are aware of its effects and outcome before its appearance, and have seen existence when it has been non-existent. The heavens revolve lovingly along the axis of Perfect Man and the sun gets is light and illumination from the being of Perfect Man. Perfect Man is the axis of the world and as long as he exists in the world, the world is protected and established.

The Perfect mystic is never separated from Allah, for he considers his own attributes as the Divine Essence and attributes, and his separation from Haqq is impossible.

What the seekers of exoteric knowledge and empirical knowledge gain after years of bearing hardship and spending a life time on this path is evident to Perfect human beings from the beginning.

Allah has been exemplified in the Perfect Man and he is the reflection of Divine attributes. As the Ana al-Haqq (I am Haqq) of Manthur, which was the result of his journey away from the realm of self-seeing and egocentrism, turned to light, the Ana al-Haqq (I am Haqq) of the Pharaoh, which was out of egocentrism and forgetfulness of Haqq, was a lie and a corrupt speech.

As the different parts of the body have different forms and qualities, Perfect human beings also have different forms and qualities, but the mind of regular human beings is unable to understand these different states and qualities. The result of the manifestation of the Divine Essence upon the spirit of human beings is the advent of Perfect Man, who is the ultimate reason of creation. As Lady Maryam became pregnant with Jesus, the life of Perfect Man also benefits from the manifestation of Divine light. Through Perfect Man’s life benefitting from Allah and receiving Divine wisdom and knowledge, all the beings of the world gain life, for the Perfect Man enriches and benefits lives, such that even the world benefits from the existence of Perfect Man.

The world of the Perfect Man as a result of receiving Divine wisdom and knowledge is constantly being annihilated and again reappears, till the moment of his final resurrection arrives, which is the separation of the Perfect Man from the material world and his connection to the Divine reality, which is the essence of the one God. The story of the thirsty man who was sitting on a wall which prevented him from reaching the water, and by hearing the sound of the water as the result of a brick of the wall falling into it, losing himself and considering it as the granting of his prayer, is the story of the spirit which is happy for the breaking and destruction of its material desires and wishes, for in reality they prevent reaching and meeting the Haqq. In reality, this sound for those who are thirsty for union with the Divine is like the sound of Israfil who resurrects the dead, or like the days of paying the zakat for the darwish, or the freedom from poverty for the destitute, or the hearing of the glad tidings of freedom for the prisoner. This sound is like the Divine breath which reached the Prophet from Yemen from one of his companions, or like the scent of Prophets which causes the intersession of the Prophet for the sinners on the Day of Judgement, or like the scent of Yusuf’s which gave Jacob his sight back.

Regular human beings only see the outward form of objects. Perfect Man, however, is a vehicle for the manifestation of the Divine secrets and sees the quiddity of objects.

The highest form of knowledge belongs to the pure Sufis and those free from the chain of sensualities, for this means knowing the Haqq by the Haqq without the intermediation of other causes; this kind of knowledge belongs to the Prophets and Divine Saints.

In this regards, Imam Sajjad says that: I have known You by Yourself and You guided me towards Yourself and called me towards Yourself, and if You were not, I would not have known who You are7.

The mystic who has reached union knows that the phenomena is not essential, rather, it is noumen which is essential, for he knows that there is only one Being and the rest are reflections of Him. Further, he does not see a world unless he sees the relation of causality between the world and its creator, for he only sees the Universal Essence in which he is drowned.

Some of the signs of the spiritual wisdom of Perfect Man have been stated in discourse ten of the second book of the Mathnawi8, some of which are opening paths, creating positive existential transformation, patience, giving selflessly and chivalry becoming part of the character of the mystics. The mystics are the kings of the world of the hearts, but the temporal kings rule on their thrones. The beginning of the illumination of mystics by the unseen light in the stage of Haqq al-Yaqin is because of the freedom of their attention from the chains of the soul; at this stage Divine attributes replace spiritual talents. In the stage of ‘Ayn al-Yaqin the mystic sees clearly the realities; this kind of seeing is firm and is opposite to other forms of knowledge, which are debatable. The reality which is discovered at the stage of ‘Ayn al-Yaqin is a universal issue and is not only an individual experience, as some of the western scholars have stated, for it is experienced by all the Divine Saints and also because they have informed others of it and have stated it for the worthy in a manner understandable to them. Further, the door and path for reaching such a spiritual knowledge is open to everyone; it requires “wanting”, “need”, “hard-work” and a “master”. The reality of the Sheikh and his light does not have an end or limit.

Disbelief (kufr) is the symbol of the veil of darkness and deductive belief is the symbol of the veil of light. The disbeliever is covered from the Truth, and also the person who has stopped at the rank of deductive belief and ‘Ilm al-Yaqin is also veiled. It is only Perfect Man who has reached the stage of seeing reality and certain knowledge which is the stage of Haqq al-Yaqin and, as such, is freed from the veils.

Yahya and Jesus, in discourse twelve of the second book, are the symbol of Perfect Man and Prophet Muhammad is the symbol of the best Perfect human being.

The Mutual Relations of Perfect Man and the Spiritual Wayfarer:

The spiritual wayfarer reaches the intention and the destination with the guidance of the guide, thus, if the guide is an imperfect human being he will cause the spiritual wayfarer to deviate and go astray from the path of Haqq. The spiritual wayfarer, by making his actions and states compatible to that of the guide, will also become perfect in the end, whereas becoming compatible and socialising with imperfect human beings will lead to the decreasing of the intellect 9.

Perfect Man distances himself from ignorant people, as the Great Name of Allah which gives Prophets and Divine Saints the power of miracles can cause the destruction of the ignorant. Those who seek to learn the Great Name must have a soul which is more pure than rain and an understanding which is greater than that of the angels, and must have never sinned. Desiring to reach such a stage requires a very long time, so that the soul of the human being becomes pure and his prayers become accepted, and for Allah to consider him as trustworthy in keeping the Divine secrets so that he can reach the stage of being the Divine Trustee. This is portrayed by the cane becoming a serpent in the hand of Moses because of the purity of his spirit and soul, whereas it would have been useless in the hands of a regular person.

The best way of spiritual wayfaring is benefitting from the presence of a spiritual guide, for being present in the presence of the Perfect Man protects the spiritual wayfarer from the temptations of the devil. In reality, the heart of the mystic is a book for accepting Divine inspirations and miracles and is devoid of letters and words. The result of the work of thinkers is their writings, yet the result of the work of the mystic is the knowledge that, on the one hand, is the result of spiritual wayfaring (acquired knowledge), and on the other hand is the other wisdoms that are revealed to his heart from Allah through revelation (intuitive knowledge). Thus, for reaching reality, the first knowledge is not sufficient; rather, through asceticism with the guidance of Perfect Man, spiritual wayfaring will become complete and the wayfarer will reach the objective.

Intuitive knowledge is superior to acquired knowledge for reaching the stage of Perfect spiritual wayfarer. In the beginning, the spiritual wayfarer is in search of a guide and by finding him and making use of his teachings and guidance, after a while the love of union with Allah creates such a joy in him that he will walk the path till he reaches the stage of liqa’ Allah (meeting Allah).

When the spiritual wayfarer becomes aware of and grateful for the valuable gift of the Perfect Man as the guide, as a result of this gratitude the Divine blessings and compassion increase, and he will understand the reality without intermediation and will join the ranks of the people of Truth. The wayfarer that walks the path with love is much more exalted than the wayfarer who walks the path by imitation. The heart of the wayfarer becoming familiar with the Divine realities is like the opening of the doors of the Heaven of reality. Such a heart, that is the treasury of Divine secrets, is an open door for seeing Divine attributes and is like a valuable gem for the mystic, whereas for others it is like a stone wall.

The lovers of the world who do not accept the invitation of the people of Truth and consider it as deception, are not aware that the wayfarers of the path of Truth are not in need of their world and are constantly moving towards their original abode, which is the Divine Heaven.  The world-worshipers accuse the people of Truth of wanting to throw them out of the kingdom of their beloved, as they said to Musa, and they deny the friendship of the people of Truth with Allah, as they asked the Prophet for the signs of his friendship and closeness to Allah and the power that Allah had given him. This is because they are ignorant that this world and whatever is in it is created because of the sacred being of Perfect Man and the wayfarers of the path of Truth. Perfect human beings and the wayfarers of the path of Truth pass the stages of spiritual wayfaring one after the other, and free many human beings from the chains of the material world and worldly desires. The purpose of their socialising with world-lovers is in order to guide them and intercede for them with their Lord. The person is prosperous who, as a result of the guidance of Perfect Man is guided towards the path of Truth, and as a result of companionship with him becomes a wayfarer of the path of Truth; for in such a state he will definitely be blessed by the blessings of Allah, and will not be alone and without a helper, and Allah will grant his prayers. Perfect Man follows the Divine Will; by the command of Allah he guides human beings in this world, and whenever Allah calls him towards Himself he gladly moves towards Allah. Perfect Man is the manifestation of Allah, but at the same time is not of the same genus as him. However, he is illuminated by the Divine light and considers himself naught in the presence of Allah. Although Divine Saints are not of the same genus as Allah – as Allah is Eternal and Self-Subsistent, while they are accidental and their existence is dependent upon the Divine Will – because they have annihilated their existence in Allah and because of His Eternal and unlimited existence, they also are subsistent and the signs of Allah are evident in them. Therefore, those who desire such a rank must annihilate within Allah so that they may reach the stage of liqa’ Allah.

The wayfarers of the path of Truth understand the teachings of Perfect Man based on their spiritual potential. The effect that is created in the heart of spiritual wayfarers as a result of the influence of the pir and the Divine wisdom and knowledge will be destroyed if the wayfarer loses the light of guidance, and his heart will become afflicted by disbelief and corruption and the water of life that flows in his being will turn into blood. As a result of the light of Haqq being shown to the mountain, the mountain gains life and becomes fragmented, so how is it possible that the effect of Haqq is without effect on people? The life of such people will not become illuminated by the Divine light, they will never become of the Men of Allah, they will not reply to the call of Allah with Love, and the purity of Divine love and compassion cannot be seen in their being. However, it is possible for such people that by asceticism and worship and through overcoming the desires of their soul, their hearts can be illuminated by the Divine light and they can be saved.

When the Perfect Man destroys the mountain of egocentrism and humanity in the being of the spiritual wayfarer, the worldly and physical desires of the wayfarer are destroyed. The spiritual revolution that is created in the heart of the wayfarer of the path of Truth by the Perfect Man is far greater in comparison to the Day of Judgement and is like a cure for a wound, for this cure protects the wayfarer from the wound of punishment on the Day of Judgement and even evil-doers become good-doers by witnessing this.

Socialising with the Perfect Man results in happiness and spiritual illumination, even in the hearts of those with a wilted heart. People do not know who resides in the inner house of Divine Saints, so whatever form of rudeness that they commit towards the Divine Saints is due to their ignorance. The mystic who has reached union and is a guide must guide the spiritual wayfarers by his speech and action according to their potential and talent so that they do not believe something false about themselves which will lead to them being led astray.

A person who is ignorant of the belief of Perfect Man and does not himself have such a belief is a disbeliever. A person who is not aware of the life and the spirit of the Perfect Man is dead, for the life and spirit of the Perfect Man is like the manifestation of Allah, and whoever is unaware of that true life has, in reality, died by ignorance and forgetfulness.

The belief of the mystic is the true perception of Divine Unity, and without this vision spiritual life does not exist. The reason for the perfection and superiority of human beings in contrast to animals is their higher degree of awareness and knowledge.

Perfect Man is complete good, and accusation and saying bad things about others, for them, is exactly like having gone astray. Perfect Man is an infinite elixir. The mystic, by the mediation of his elixir of love and knowledge, transforms the copper of the being of spiritual wayfarers to spiritual gold. People who have not been guided cannot in anyway damage the esoteric knowledge of the Perfect Man and decrease from his status.

The fire of lust and desires of the soul is afraid of the guide who is after putting it out, but Perfect Man, who is the source of pure water, has no fear of animalistic attributes and lust and soulful desires. Those who worship themselves are seeking to find a mistake in the complete moon of the being of Perfect Man. The heart of the spiritual wayfarer is like Heaven, but those who are prisoners of the desires of the soul are seeking to find a thorn in that Heaven, although they will find no thorn other than the thorn of their own being. Those who follow their nafs attempt to veil the Sun of the Reality of the wali of Haqq by denying it and seeking faults in it, but they will fail at this. By appearing in the presence of Perfect human beings and serving and accompanying them, the blessings of Allah will encompass the life of the human being, while jealousy towards the Divine Saints will result in the Divine grace and mercy being cut off from the individual.

In Rumi’s Mathnawi, The Prophet of Islam said: Allah has removed any form of evil from the Prophets and Divine Saints, and has purified their place of prostration (sujud) till the seventh level of Earth10.

Jealousy of the Prophets of Allah and the Divine Saints results in the human being transformed into the devil in this world. If the mystic benefits from the world, the world will not corrupt his spirit, but if worldly people drown in worldly blessings, they will lose themselves.

For Perfect Man has annihilated his human attributes and has become the manifestation of Divine attributes and lights, and all his actions have become Divine, thus he has become like the Divine grace and the fires of his nafs have transformed into the light of knowledge. Further, their power is derived from Divine power, just as the birds of Ababil by benefitting from Divine power killed the elephants; however, their power was exclusively from Allah.

People should not be rude towards the Divine Saints, fight them, consider themselves as their equal or abuse their humbleness, for they will be punished.

He who is not a Prophet must follow the path that the Prophet has shown him, and until having reached the stage of becoming a sheikh, must follow the Perfect Man so that he can be freed from the well of egoism and the appetitive soul (nafs al-ammarah), and reach an exalted spiritual rank.

Those who are not the kings of the path must follow and obey a pure king, and those who are not captains of the ship must not go towards the Sea of Reality alone; rather, they must follow a person who is knowledgeable of the knowledge of the path, so that the wind of temptation does not destroy their ship.

The individual who is at the stage of learning and is being guided must accept the speech of Haqq by remaining silent, and until he has become the tongue of Haqq and has learnt directly from the Absolute Being, he must learn from Perfect human beings who have learned from Haqq and are the manifestations of Divine revelation and inspiration. He must speak to the Divine Saints as a beggar and must be humble before the Saints of the Divine path, so that he does not act with arrogance and enmity and is not afflicted by forgetfulness and lust.

In reality, regardless of how much the wali reveals of his esoteric knowledge, what he says is like a drop of rain in comparison to the sea.

For Perfect Man who is free from boundaries, even the principle of moderation is relative, for moderation applies to issues which have a beginning and an end. However, Perfect Man who has reached union with the Divine speaks of the Divine secrets and realities which have no beginning or end. They are filled with Divine secrets and knowledge; however, they only bestow parts of those Divine secrets and knowledge based on the state and rank of their followers.

The Perfect mystic and the pir open the path for the seekers of Haqq and Reality with pure and sacred intentions. Even the wayfarers who have not reached the highest degrees of perfection are not afflicted with mistake, let alone the most perfect of them. The sound of Divine Unity of the men of Haqq sets fire to doubt. The spiritual wayfarer who is a beginner but is under the guidance of the Perfect guide is much more superior to a wayfarer who has travelled on the path for years without a guide.


Therefore, according to the teachings of Rumi, in a Semantic methodology Perfect Man is placed in a square/triangle geometrical form. The centre of this form is Allah, the sides of it are the “universe”, “people” and “guidance”, and the perfect man is its “diameter”, which relates the different sides to each other and creates “a light and reflective relation” between the centre, which is Allah, and the sides, and Perfect Man is the “Caliph” and the “representative” of Allah.


A. Nasafi, Al-insan al-kamil,Tahuri, Tehran, 1362.

F. Lewis, Rumi Past and Present, East and West, One World Publisher, Oxford, 2000.

Imam Sajjad, Sahifeh Sajadieh, Ansaryan, Qom, 1386.

J. Rumi, Mathnawi, Hermes, Tehran, 2007.

M.Ibn Arabi, Al-Insan al-kamil, Jami, Tehran, 1386.

S.G. Safavi, Rumi Teachings, Xlibris, Philadelphia, 2008.

S.G. Safavi, The Structure of Rumi’s Mathnawi, London Academy of Iranian Studies Press, London, 2006.

S.G. Safavi and S. Weightman, Rumi’s Mystical Design, SUNY press, Albany, USA, 2009.

W. Chittic, The Sufi Path of Love, SUNY Press, Albany, USA, 1983.

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