Iran (IP)- Shams Tabrizi or Shams al-Din Mohammad was a Persian poet, who is credited as the spiritual instructor of, also known as Jalal al-Din Muhammad Rumi, ON the 29th of September Iranians commemorate this great figure.

Iran PressIran news: Shams-e Tabrizi (1185–1248) was the spiritual instructor of Mowlana Jalal al-Din Balkhi (Rumi) and is referenced with great reverence in Rumi's poetic collection, in particular, ‘Diwan-e Shams-e Tabrizi’ (‘The Works of Shams of Tabriz’). Tradition holds that Shams taught Rumi in seclusion in Konya for a period of forty days, before fleeing for Damascus. The tomb of Shams was recently nominated to be a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Shams Tabrizi. mentor of Rumi, is renowned for his poetry


Shams Tabrizi's life: 

According to Sipah Salar, a devotee and intimate friend of Rumi who spent forty years with him, Shams was the son of Imam Ala al-Din. In a work entitled Manāqib al-‘arifīn (Eulogies of the Gnostics), Aflaki names a certain ‘Ali as the father of Shams-i Tabrīzī and his grandfather as Malikdad. Apparently basing his calculations on Hajji Bektash Wali's Maqālāt (Conversations), Aflaki suggests that Shams arrived in Konya at the age of sixty years. However, various scholars have questioned Aflaki’s reliability. 

Painting inspired by Shams Tabrizi


Shams Tabrizi

Shams received his education in Tabriz and was a disciple of Baba Kamal al-Din Jumdi. Before meeting Rumi, he apparently traveled from place to place weaving baskets and selling girdles for a living. Despite his occupation as a weaver, Shams received the epithet of "the embroiderer” (zarduz) in various biographical accounts including that of the Persian historian Dawlatshah.

This however, is not the occupation listed by Hajji Bektash Wali in the ”Maqalat” and was rather the epithet given to the Ismaili Imam Shams al-din Muhammad, who worked as an embroider while living in anonymity in Tabriz. The transference of the epithet to the biography of Rumi’s mentor suggests that this Imam’s biography must have been known to Shams Tabrizi’s biographers. The specificities of how this transference occurred, however, are not yet known. Shams’ encounter with Rumi.

Old Persian manuscript of ShamsTabrizi's poems


Shams Tabrizi died in Khoy and is buried there. His tomb has been nominated as a World Cultural Heritage Center by UNESCO. A saint by the name of Shams-i Tabrīzī is also buried at Multan, Pakistan. The tombstone clearly indicates it is the same Shams-i Tabrīzī, who was the spiritual mentor of Rumi. But this is wrong actually this tomb belongs to Hazrat Pir Shamsuddin Sabzwari Multani who is the Pir (elder) of the Ismaili spiritual and theological school.

Old painting depicting first meeting of Shams and Rumi


Shams Tabrizi meeting Rumi

There are some narratives regarding the meeting of Shams Tabrizi and Rumi  On 15 November 1244, a man in a black suit from head to toe, came to the famous inn of Sugar Merchants of Konya. His name was Shams Tabrizi. He was claiming to be a traveling merchant. As it was said in Haji Bektash Veli’s book, “Makalat”, he was looking for something. Which he was going to find in Konya. Eventually, he found Rumi riding a horse.

Shams Tabrizi tomb


One day Rumi was reading next to a large stack of books. Shams Tabriz, passing by, asked him, “What are you doing?” Rumi scoffingly replied, “Something you cannot understand.” On hearing this, Shams threw the stack of books into a nearby pool of water. Rumi hastily rescued the books and to his surprise, they were all dry. Rumi then asked Shams, “What is this?” To which Shams replied, “Mowlana, this is what you cannot understand.”

A second version of the tale has Shams passing by Rumi who again is reading a book. Rumi regards him as an uneducated stranger. Shams asks Rumi what he is doing, to which Rumi replies, “Something that you do not understand!” At that moment, the books suddenly catch fire and Rumi asks Shams to explain what happened. His reply was, “Something you do not understand.”


Shams Tabrizi mausoleum 


Shams Tabrizi; a significant figure in Iranian Culture

He is known for initiating Mawlana Jala ad-din Mohammad Rumi, usually known as Rumi in the West, into Islamic mysticism, and is immortalized by Rumi's poetry collection) "The Works of Shams of Tabriz" (Persian, Divane Shams-e Tabrizi).

Shams Tabrizi mausoleum in Khoy


As one of Iran's greatest poets and mystics, he was keen to travel, and it was Rumi who inspired him to study poetry and teach poetry.

Shams Tabrizi shrine is a historical and cultural place with different architectural characteristics which has an animal's horn in its structure while it was built about 400 years ago.

Shams Tabrizi was a Muslim who lived in Persia in the 12th and 13th centuries and lived by a set of rules called "40 rules of love". Although his main claim to fame now is for being the teacher of Rumi, the Persian Islamic scholar, Shams Tabrizi stands among the most brilliant figures in Persian culture.


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Shams Tabrizi mausoleum, tourist attraction in Iran