Irfani (Gnostic) Tafsir (Exegesis) of Surah Al-Fatiha
Eclectic Collection from Rumi’s Masnavi and Divan Kabir

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إِيَّاكَ نَعْبُدُ وَإِيَّاكَ نَسْتَعِينُ
1:5 ‘Iyyāka-Na’bud (You we serve) and/while ‘Iyyāka-Nasta’in (You we seek aid from)

The flower of beatitude grows not except by Your Divine Face
My love, ‘Iyyāka-Na’bud (You we serve) shall never be without ‘Iyyāka-Nasta’in (You we seek aid from)
(K 854/2)

زیرا گل سعادت بی‌روی تو نروید

ایاک نعبد ای جان بی‌نستعین نباشد

Dara: What flower can bloom with beauty without facing the Divine Face? And how can the services of servant blossom with any sort of beauty (Ihsan) unless facing Allah’s Divine Face? ‘Iyyāka-Na’bud (You we serve) blooms only while seeking the effulgent direction of the Divine Face and that seeking is ‘Iyyāka-Nasta’in (You we seek aid from); like unto a flower turning towards the direction of the light. How can a flower bloom without the light? How can a servant serve without the effulgent beauty of the Master?

The invocation of the orchard in winter: ‘Iyyāka-Na’bud (You we serve)
And its words during the fresh spring: ‘Iyyāka-Nasta’in (You we seek aid from)

ایاک نعبد است زمستان دعای باغ

در نوبهار گوید ایاک نستعین

Dara: During the winter of scantiness we are all slaves to one Master until the arrival of the spring when plentiful provisions divert our attention from the Master to our Selves, from That Beloved to many beloveds; and as such as we seek the aid and help of Allah to keep our attentions towards IT/Him: ‘Iyyāka-Nasta’in (You we seek aid from).

‘Iyyāka-Na’bud (You we serve) is when I arrive like a beggar (at Your gate)
Open the gates of happiness, forsake me not in this sorrow

ایاک نعبد آنک به دریوزه آمدم

بگشا در طرب مگذارم دگر حزین

‘Iyyāka-Nasta’in (You we seek aid from) due to heaviness of the fruits
Breaks me (like a tree branch) thus preserve me O The Benefactor 
(K 2046/2)

ایاک نستعین که ز پری میوه‌ها

اشکسته می‌شوم نگهم دار ای معین

Dara: We are all branches in the same tree of servitude for the Lord of the Multiverse until such time the blessings of the Divine Endowments snaps our backs, breaks us like branches, and out of deviant Self-confidence, we are no longer verdant branches, but broken unliving twigs, scattered unloving individuals.

Upon the lover’s forehead the inscription of ‘Iyyāka-Na’bud (You we serve)
In the lover’s eyes the amorous gestures of ‘Iyyāka-Nasta’in (You we seek aid from)
(K 2053/4)

در طره‌هاش نسخه ایاک نعبد است

در چشم‌هاش غمزه ایاک نستعین

Dara: Earlier in this poem Rumi advises the listener to only keep the company of the lovers:

با عاشقان نشین و همه عاشقی گزین

با آنک نیست عاشق یک دم مشو قرین

of course the lovers who love That Divine Beloved. Therefore when you look at the faces of these lovers all you see is Iyyāka-Na’bud (You we serve) and when you pierce into their eyes all you find is ‘Iyyāka-Nasta’in (You we seek aid from). So they are no longer made from the flesh and psychology, but these lovers are made from the exotic substances of ‘Iyyāka-Na’bud (You we serve) and ‘Iyyāka-Nasta’in (You we seek aid from).

‘Iyyāka-Na’bud (You we serve) within the moans of the yearnings
In troubles, ‘Iyyāka-Nasta’in (You we seek aid from) sought-after for none but You

هم‌چنانک ایاک نعبد در حنین

در بلا از غیر تو لانستعین

This ‘Iyyāka-Na’bud (You we serve) as the reduction of scope (Hasr)
Within the grammar, for the purpose of negation of hypocrisy

هست این ایاک نعبد حصر را

در لغت و آن از پی نفی ریا

‘Iyyāka-Nasta’in (You we seek aid from) also because of reduction of scope (Hasr)
Limiting the reach of ‘seeking’ and thus shortening the range of the scope (Qasr)
(M 2929-31:4)

هست ایاک نستعین هم بهر حصر

حصر کرده استعانت را و قصر

Dara: When we need help we cast a wide net to fish for any measure of help and gain; but both the range of casting of the ‘Iyyāka-Na’bud (You we serve) and ‘Iyyāka-Nasta’in (You we seek aid from) are quite miniscule since they are to net the aid of Allah and none else; and yet Allah is closest helper at all times to every servant. Rumi goes on to teach the grammar of the verse by introducing the Arabic concepts of Hasr (Scope) and Qasr (Shortening) which comprise a unique grammatical construct suitable to implicitly indicate the exclusivity of serving and seeking.

By Suyuti
Hasr, also called Qasr, is for specializing a form of exclusivity by some alternative method/specification/entity. ‘Iyyāka-Na’bud (You we serve) utilizes the Hasr to limit the scope of the serving exclusively for Allah and none else. Some grammarians have claimed that the antecedence of ‘Iyyāka (You) prior to Na’bud (We serve) as opposed to Na’budu-Ka(We serve You) is for the purpose of using the utility of the exclusively limited scope of the service. There is however a difference between the Hasr (Limiting the Scope) and Ikhtisas (Specialization) for Hasr carried the (implicit) concept of negation i.e. non-else other than who/what was mentioned and yet Ikhtisas (Specialization) uses no negation and utilizes other methods. (Therefore ‘Iyyāka-Na’bud (You we serve) means ‘We serve no one else but You’ and that is achieved by pushing the You to the beginning of the sentence. And the said negation is reflected into the text of the poem i.e. “for the purpose of negation of hypocrisy” meaning we seek on one else other than You, and that is to avoid the hypocrisy of seeking help from others while you are so readily available to provide aid at all times.)

الإتقان في علوم القرآن  السيوطي 
النوع الخامس والخمسون
في الحصر والاختصاص
أما الحصر ويقال له القصر فهوتخصيص أمر بآخر بطريق مخصوص.
 والثاني هو الاختصاص وأنه هو الأهم عند المتكلم، وهوالذي قصد إفادته السامع من غير تعرض ولا قصد لغيره بإثبات ولا نفي، ففي الحصر معنى زائد عليه وهونفي ما عدا المذكور، وإنما جاء في هذا إياك نعبد للعلم بأن قائليه لا يعبدون غير الله تعالى،
 والفضلاء لم يذكروا في ذلك لفظة الحصر، وإنما عبروا بالاختصاص. والفرق بينهما أن الحصر نفي غير المذكور وإثبات المذكور، والاختصاص قصد الخاص من جهة خصوصه،

اهْدِنَا الصِّرَاطَ الْمُسْتَقِيمَ
1:6 Ihdinā (Guide us (towards)) Al (The) Sirat-Al-Mustaqim (The Straight Path)

Ihdinā (Guide us (towards)) you said and then Sirat-Al-Mustaqim (The Straight Path)
Held your hand and took you to all comforts and felicity
(M 3420/4)

اهدنا گفتی صراط مستقیم

دست تو بگرفت و بردت تا نعیم

Because of this, this believer invokes out of fear
During the prayers: Ihdinā (Guide us (towards)) Al (The) Sirat-Al-Mustaqim (The Straight Path)
(M 2241/1)

بهر اینمؤمن همی‌گوید ز بیم

در نماز اهد الصراط المستقیم

As a relief for all these fears
It appears in every prayer: Ihdinā (Guide us (towards))
(M 3405/1)

از برای چاره‌ی این خوفها

آمد اندر هر نمازی اهدنا

Every breath the scent of what heart loves comes from Sirat-Al-Mustaqim (The Straight Path)
So you might not say: The one who made this roaming Ishq to walk, is where?

هر نفس بوی دل آید از صراط المستقیم

تا نگویی عشق ره رو را که راه آورد کو

As you become confused and defocused and lost 
Say by the tongue of Hāl (Circumstances): Ihdinā (Guide us (towards))
(M 3752/4)

چونک حیران گشتی و گیج و فنا

با زبان حال گفتی اهدنا

Being pulled along a single path of Sirat-Al-Mustaqim (The Straight Path)
Far better than the doubtful choice of a fork on the road, O honorable friend
(M 204/6)

جذب یک راهه‌ی صراط المستقیم

به ز دو راه تردد ای کریم

Dara: Lisan Al-Hāl or the language of the circumstances is an anthropomorphic usage of the language of the Arab which is found within the Qur’an:

41:11 Moreover IT/He comprehended in ITs/His design the sky, and she had been (as) smoke: IT/He said to her (sky) and to the earth: "Come together, willingly or unwillingly." They said: "We do come (together), in willing obedience." 

This is when the language extends itself beyond the realm of physically observed objects to become a voice for the voiceless circumstances. Another such example from Qur’an:

14:45 "And you stayed in the dwellings of men who wronged their own souls; you were clearly shown how We dealt with them; and We put forth (many) parables for you!"

We live on the land and in the houses of expired folk whom Allah removed from this earth, either by means of natural processes or by destructive forces. And the fact that we are peacefully living in quarters that previous blood was shed and tremendous suffering was felt talks to our intellect and gives us, Ihdinā (Guide us (towards)), instruction and suggestions as how to continue our lives to avoid what happened to those before us. For example I live in Toronto and prior to the coming of the White Man there were countless tribes of Native Americans living here for thousands of years. And yet Allah’s destiny was for them to removed by harsh and bloody means from their own land and now here I am a Persian: Eating from their land and living on it without any thought given to the previous generations of Indians who occupied my quarters; Dara's carelessness is what Qur’an tells us to avoid by giving the circumstances of life a voice i.e. Ponder and see what happened to those who lived here before you! To avoid the same injustices for you and your neighbors and stop wrongful measures of your hand against the people: Ihdinā (Guide us (towards)) 

Toronto's Lisan Al-Hāl:

Aziz-e Delam (Dearest to my heart) it is all about the Raftan (Departure) not about the Cārevān-Sarā (The rest stop on the way)... Raftam Rafti Raft Raftim Raftin Raftand ... Ihdinā Guide us towards Raftan....

© 2009-2002,  Dara O Shayda