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                                        Volume. 12116

Rumi belongs to Iran and the entire world: Ahmadinejad
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An Iranian group performs a scene from “Love Resurrection”, a play about the life story of Rumi, during the opening ceremony of the Shams’s Encounter with Rumi conference at Tehran’s Vahdat Hall on January 24, 2013. (IRNA/Marzieh Musavi)
An Iranian group performs a scene from “Love Resurrection”, a play about the life story of Rumi, during the opening ceremony of the Shams’s Encounter with Rumi conference at Tehran’s Vahdat Hall on January 24, 2013. (IRNA/Marzieh Musavi)
TEHRAN -- President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has said that the Persian mystic and poet Molana Jalal ad-Din Rumi (1207-1273) belongs to Iran and the entire world.
 
Speaking at a conference entitled Shams’s Encounter with Rumi in Tehran on Thursday, he noted, “Those people who uplift themselves and distance themselves from racial and geographical divisions belong to everyone.”
 
“As much as someone avoids egoism, he will rise up and become universal. Rumi is a good example of such a man. He belongs to Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Asia, Europe, Africa, America, and the entire world,” he stated.
 
“Various nations’ claims to Rumi are not rooted in ethnic fanaticism, but in Rumi’s greatness, which pleases everybody,” he added.
 
A number of Iranian and international officials and scholars attended the one-day conference, which was held at Vahdat Hall.
 
“The Shams and Rumi Opera” composed by world-renowned Iranian musician and conductor Loris Tjeknavorian was debuted at the conference and the Rudaki Symphonic Orchestra performed some parts of the opera.
 
In addition, some scenes from “Love Resurrection”, a play which had been staged by director Hossein Mosafer Astaneh at the UNESCO headquarters in Paris as part of the organization’s celebration of the 800th birth anniversary of Molana Jalal al-Din Rumi in 2007, were performed by a group directed by Nader Rajabpur.
 
An exhibition of posters about Rumi also opened on the sidelines of the meeting.
 
Since Rumi’s birthplace is located in Balkh, in present-day Afghanistan, and he was buried in Konya, southern Turkey, Afghanistan and Turkey have made claims that the Persian poet belongs to them over the past decade.
 
Rumi is said to have undertaken one or two journeys to Syria, during one of which he met the dervish Shams.
 
However, he was deeply influenced by Shams during their second visit in Konya on November 30, 1244.
 
For months, the two men constantly interacted, and as a result, Rumi neglected his disciples and family, who could not tolerate the close relationship. 
 
One night in 1247, Shams disappeared forever. This experience turned Rumi into a poet. The Divan of Shams (The collected Poetry of Shams) is a true translation of his experiences into poetry.
 
 
MMS/YAW/HG
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