Come, fill the Cup, and in the Fire of Spring The Winter Garment of Repentance fling: The Bird of Time has but a little way To fly---and Lo! the Bird is on the Wing.
We are here for a short time. What is the use of wallowing in repentance? Especially in repentance of imaginary 'sins' that have harmed no-one.
Time spent being miserable, or making others miserable, is time wasted. Instead of worrying about future things we cannot know anything about, we should enjoy ourselves, and each other, now.
Here with a Loaf of Bread beneath the Bough, A Flask of Wine, a Book of Verse---and Thou Beside me singing in the Wilderness--- And Wilderness is Paradise enow. . . . Ah, make the most of what we yet may spend, Before we too into the Dust descend; Dust into Dust, and under Dust, to lie, Sans Wine, sans Song, sans Singer, and---sans End!
And to the many here that have told me - "you'll regret your unbelief when it's too late", I say, - you will regret your lost opportunities when it's too late. Enjoy life, with old Omar Khayyam.
From what I understand, he left over a thousand verses (in farsi) which were not all connected, though of course some were. Fitzgerald appears to have studied them and collated those that seemed to cohere best. Personally, I think his first version is inspired, and more poetic than his second.
I think if you had to sum up his philosophy, "a caring hedonism laced with nihilism" would come fairly close. I like his outlook.
OK. In fact, it's still a selective translation, because the original doesn't really exist, except as a vast legacy of Omar's fragments. But FitsG did a brilliant job on it! Sorry to hear about the fire.
Thanks ! I survived As I don't care for material things It wasn't that terrible. The only thing I regret is That I lost all my paintings. All I've painted and draw during my entire life. I'm a painter and writer.
Rotten luck, just the same. I'm used to living without possessions because they are all in UK and I'm in Qatar, where I refuse to build an empire that I'd have to dismantle when I leave. Guitars though, I can't live without a guitar
These four stanzas from the Rubaiyat seem particularly appropriate for the Religion Forum:
Why, all the Saints and Sages who discuss'd Of the Two Worlds so learnedly, are thrust Like foolish Prophets forth; their Words to Scorn Are scatter'd, and their Mouths are stopt with Dust. . . . Oh, come with old Khayyam, and leave the Wise To talk; one thing is certain, that Life flies; One thing is certain, and the Rest is Lies; The Flower that once has blown for ever dies. . . . Myself when young did eagerly frequent Doctor and Saint, and heard great Argument About it and about: but evermore Came out by the same Door as in I went. . . . With them the Seed of Wisdom did I sow, And with my own hand labour'd it to grow: And this was all the Harvest that I reap'd--- "I came like Water, and like Wind I go."
Because, people, our only certainty is death. Whatever we may believe about afterlives and other worlds, is so much conjecture.
But - a flask of wine, a loaf of bread, and Thou There's true comfort and peace there.
Earnest - I think, when people accept the possibility that this life is all there is, that in turn opens the possibility of a true appreciation of it. And our so-called "hard-wired religiosity" is easily turned to serve poetry, art, music, or simply a love of life, love and good company.
Thanks Shalini - that's probably the most famous stanza, or at least it's up there with "A flask of wine, a loaf of bread, and Thou". Why am I not surprised that you are also a lover of this great work?
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