UNESCO declared 2007 the "Year of Rumi" to commemorate famous Islamic mystic Mevlana Jalaluddin Rumi's (1207-1273) 800th birthday. Born in Balkh (today's Afghanistan), Mevlana Jalaluddin Rumi (mostly known as Rumi) was a poet, philosopher, and scholar whose spiritual and literary influences crossed the boundaries of the medieval Islamic world and have even reached Europe and America today. Rumi's poetry books became bestsellers in America, as did his famous line "Come, come again, whoever you are, come!" aimed at breaking the boundaries between different groups of people. In today's world, the images of Islam and Muslims are often equated with intolerant fundamentalisms and violence, yet Rumi's messages promoted acceptance, tolerance, and especially peace. UNESCO's commemoration of Rumi's life is a testament to how individuals can "promote closer relations among peoples, tolerance, and ideals of peace, cultural dialogue, and mutual understanding." Rumi's poetry and his philosophy remain timeless and are highly relevant still in today's world.

Rumi is known not only for his 70,000 couplets poetry but also the Mevlana brotherhood he established, as most associated with the so-called Whirling Dervishes. The group uses music and dance in expressing their desires to be in harmony with the universe, a ritual that is still performed to commemorate Rumi and his order. In light of UNESCO's decision to celebrate Rumi in 2007, numerous celebrations are planned throughout the world, and this event will help to preserve this rich cultural tradition - a vital alternative vision for people seeking to live together peacefully..

Additional resources for information about Rumi's life and work:

For further information on Rumi's writings:

Designed by MATRIX