n 1244, Jelaluddin Rumi, a Sufi scholar in Konya, Turkey, met an itinerant dervish, Shams of Tabriz. A powerful friendship ensued. When Shams died, the grieving Rumi gripped a pole in his garden, and turning round it, began reciting imagistic poetry about inner life and love of God. Rumi founded the Mevlevi Sufi order, the whirling dervishes. Lovers of Rumi's poems comment on their power and meaning, including religious historian Huston Smith, writer Simone Fattal, poet Robery Bly, and Coleman Barks, who reworks literal translations of Rumi into poetic English. Musicians accompany Barks and Bly as they recite their versions of several of Rumi's ecstatic poems.

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