Exploring Rumi in the 21st Century

Fee: PKR 5,000

For Students: PKR 3000

What you'll learn

  • Gain insight into Rumi's life and origins
  • Better comprehend the translations of Rumi's work in the social and spiritual context he wrote in
  • Acquire better proficiency to navigate Rumi's original texts in Persian
  • Grasp the importance of Rumi in today's world and our lives
  • Be introduced to some of the most accredited scholars on Rumi

Course Description

Who was Rumi? Does his poetry refer to a divine being or a sincere lover? How can one tap into the original Persian text and extract its ideas meaningfully? Is he still as relevant today? And if so, how does one relate to Rumi in today’s world?

The course explores questions such as these and more about Maulana Rumi, a renowned Persian poet and Sufi master born in 1207. He was declared the most popular poet in America in late 1990s, and is widely considered one of the world’s greatest poets and spiritual leaders. Given his enduring message of love, conveyed through poetry, his ideas are ever relevant, more so in a world increasingly facing issues of social chaos and human anxiety. Today, our materialistic world thirsts for the fountain of profound wisdom that stems from the kind of literature that Maulana Rumi has produced and the scholars have derived from his legacy.
The course will focus on arming students with different techniques and perspectives on how to read and understand his poetry, reflect on why Rumi retains the popularity even today, and why the poet is an important figure in the mystic and poet tradition of South Asia.

Course Content

1. Meeting the Maulana

  • Who is Rumi and how did he become the greatest Persian Sufi mystic?
  • The influence of Shams Tabraiz
  • Rumi’s perception at the time
  • How his legacy has evolved over time

2. The Relevance of Rumi Today

  • His influence in the subcontinent
  • The universality of Rumi’s poetry
  • Common misconceptions and finding authenticity
  • Rumi’s importance in our world and lives in the 21st century

3. Lost in Translation

  • How to read Rumi in Persian (as a Non-Persian Speaker)
  • The importance of original text and how mainstream translations compare
  • Guided reading of text

4. Masnavi: ‘The Quran in Persian’

  • An introduction and overview
  • Guided reading of selected stories
  • Reflection and discussion on themes, symbols and ideas.

5. Divan-i Shams-i Tabriz

  • An introduction and overview
  • Guided reading of selected stories
  • Ghazals
  • Reflection


Zameer Abbas

Zameer Abbas is a self taught Persian speaker, with great hold on the major works of Rumi. 
He currently works in the public sector. Mr Abbas is a Chevening scholar, and studied Governance and Development at University of Sussex.
In his free time, he is a birder and a bibliophile, and regularly hosts public Book Hours in Gilgit Baltistan with an active audience to encourage a greater reading culture in his local area.