Review of the novel Forty Rules of Love by Turkish author Elif Shafak

Love
  1. What we think of God is a reflection of our perception of our personality. If only fear arose in mind from the mention of God, it would be a sign that anxiety and accusation are thriving in our chest. And if God seems to be overflowing with love and compassion, then indeed we are also following suit.
  2. The path of truth is the path of the heart, not the mind. Make your heart your first mentor, not the intellect. Help the spirit to face and compete with your soul because it reveals God’s knowledge to your soul to love.
  3. Everyone who reads the Qur’an understands with their understanding following four levels. The first level is outwardly semantic, and most are satisfied with it. The second level is of esoteric meanings. The third level is them. There is a mystical meaning. And the fourth level is so profound that they are indescribable. Scholars and jurists who keep considering the law are in the first place. The second level is Sofia the third level is the saints. The fourth level belongs only to the prophets and their heirs.  So don’t worry about a person’s relationship with Allah Almighty and the nature of that relationship with your speculation. Everyone has their way, and the expression servitude has its soul. God also sees our hearts, not our words and deeds. These religious customs are not self-destructive. The real thing is the purity of the heart to love.
  4. You can see the signs of God in every object and place of the universe because God is not limited to a mosque, a temple, or a church. But if you still don’t have consolation, find God in the heart of a lover.
  5. Wisdom and heart are two different things. The intellect binds people in one bond and does not put anything at stake, but the heart is free from every bond and puts itself at stake. The mind always steps carefully. But the heart says don’t panic, dare and drown in situations. The intellect does not easily forget itself, while love is still ready to disintegrate and perish. And even treasures finds under the rubble in the desert. You see, It is in a broken heart that the prize is muffled.
  6. Most of the world’s problems arise from wrong-using words and language and extracting the wrong meanings. So never limit yourself to the apparent level of terms. When stepping into the field of love and affection, the words express themselves, and the language and expression lose importance. What cannot be said with a comment can only be understood quietly.
  7. Loneliness and solitude are different. When we are alone, it is effortless to get into the misconception that we are on the right path. But isolation is that man is not alone by being alone. Better that our loneliness Settled in the footsteps of someone who is a perfect mirror for us. Remember that only in the heart of another human being can you see your right image.
  8. No matter what happens in life, never be disappointed. Believe that even when every door is closed, Allah indeed opens a new path for His servant. Be Thankful in every situation. When everything is going fine, it’s easy to give thanks, but a Sufi is also grateful for all the things he has been deprived of.
  9. Patience means that man is so far-sighted and wide-ranging that he trusts in the Lord, keeping an eye on the results. What is patience? Patience is that when you look at the fork, you also see flowers. When you look at the darkness, you also know the reward of Morning. Impatience is that man is so short-sighted that he is unable to look at the results. The lover of God never gives up patience because they know very well that the first thin moon must spend some time turning into the perfect and full moon.
  10. East, West, North, South. It doesn’t matter. Whatever the direction of your journey, keep in mind that it leads to the inner journey. If you travel inwardly from one place to another within you, the whole universe, and whatever is beyond that, they also become partisans.
  11. Just as a mother has to go through the pain and suffering for any birth, one must also suffer to a new personality.
  12. The search for love changes us. There has not been a traveler in the way of love whom this path has not given any maturity. The moment you start the journey of search for love, you begin to go through the process of apparent and inner change. It happens.
  13. There may not be as many stars in the sky as there are false in the world. Never associate a true Murshid with a priest of the soul and a prisoner of his own. A true Murshid ever gives you his himself and never tries to capture, nor will he require obedience and praise from you for himself. On the contrary, he will introduce you to your original and genuine personality.
  14. Be ready to receive every change in your life, do not resist it. Give it a chance to pass through you and make his way. Don’t worry; there are ups and downs in life. Don’t you know if the coming is better for you or the current situation?
  15. Every human being is a complete work of art. God is engaged with every human being internally and externally to fulfill this. This is a constant process. God deals with each of us individually because humanity is a benevolent subtle and symbol of exquisite painting. Every point is of equal importance to the whole picture.
  16. It seems easy to love God, free from all kinds of faults. But more problematic is for man to love his fellows, which includes all sorts of weaknesses. Remember that man can know what he is capable of loving.
  17. Real impurity is the impurity within. Everything else can easily be washed away. There is only one type of dust that cannot be cleaned: the stain of hatred and prejudice, which pollutes the soul. You can get the purification of your body by abandoned the world and by fasting. But the purification of the heart will be only with love.
  18. The whole universe exists within a human being. Everything you see around you, all things you like or dislike, all people, all this in your way, see you at some level. So, don’t look at the devil outside, but look inside. Satan is not an extraordinary force that attacks you from the outside, but the name of a small voice emerges from within you. If you work hard and honestly, ever see your caste’s bright and dark corners, an excellent and superior consciousness will open on you. When a person knows himself, he also knows his Lord.
  19. If you want people to change their behavior with you, you must first change the action that you are pursuing with yourself. As long as you are sincere and thoroughly don’t learn to love, it’s hard for you to have love. And when this time is achieved, then be thankful for every thorn thrown in your way, for this is a sign that you will soon be swept away by flowers.
  20. Don’t worry about where the path will go, but focus on your first step. This is your responsibility, and this is the most challenging task. When you take the first step, then let every object work in its natural way.  And you will see that the path will open automatically. Do not go with the flow.
  21. He has created us all in His image, but we are all different and unique despite this. If He wants everyone to be the same If so, He would make them the same. So now, insulting these differences and trying to impose your thoughts on others is an insult to the judgment and value of the Lord and the wisdom of the higher.
  22. Whatever we do, the real role in this is that of our hearts, that of us, not of appearances. Sufis do not examine people with their looks and form. When a Sufi catches his eye on someone, he closes both his eyes and, with a third eye (heart), reviewing inside this scene.
  23. Life is as unsustainable as a loan and a blurred outline and copy of the real truth. Only children enjoy toys instead of the whole truth. But despite this, people love toys or break them down. In this life, Stay away from all kinds of extremes because extremism disturbs your inner balance. Sufis are not extremists in their attitudes but are balanced and gentle.
  24. Man has a special place in the kingdom of the Lord. Allah said, “And I blew out of my Spirit within him.” Each of us is created with the ability to become his caliph. Ask yourself if your deeds are like caliphs? Remember that we must have this compassionate spirit, which has been thrown into us.
  25. Stop worrying about heaven and hell because both are here. Whenever we feel love, we set a ladder to heaven, and whenever we fall into hatred, we are exposed to the flames of hell. Can there be a hell worse than this when a person realizes in the depths of his heart that he has done something wrong and evil? Ask this person. He will tell you what the hell is called? And can there be a more lavish paradise when a person is sent down in special moments when the windows of the universe are expansive on him, and man is close to his Lord with the mystery of eternity? Ask him. From the person, he will tell you what heaven is?
  26. The universe is a single being. Everyone here is wrapped around each other with invisible threads of their events. We are all part of a silent dialogue in ignorance. Don’t hurt anyone, be gentle, and don’t do evil. Words that once come out of our languages never perish but are saved forever in an infinite breadth and reach us back in their appointed time.
  27. This world is like this glacial mountain—every sound raised by the world, returning in echoes. Whenever you say something good or bad, you will receive it back. So, now, if you get the wrong words out of your mouth for someone who thinks ill of you all the time, it will make the matter even worse. And you will continue to wander in a never-ending cycle of negativity. Instead of saying something terrible for them, think suitable for forty days and get the good out of your mouth; you see that every object will feel different because you are not the same as before and have changed from within.
  28. The past is an interpretation, while the future is an illusion. The world does not pass through a direct line moving from the past to the end, but the endless arcs slowly spreading from within us.  Passes in the form of Eternity are not the name of infinite time but transcendence.
  29. Destiny does not mean that your life is completely tied up. Leaving everything to fate and not trying to harmonize with the universe is just ignorance. Universal Music is bursting from all sides, having forty different levels. Your destiny is the level at which you are playing your instrument. Your instrument may not be changed, but the song and the heart you draw from this instrument depend solely on you.
  30. A true Sufi is such a person that he flutters all accusations with patience and does not utter a word against the critics. He is self-extinct, so how can he consider someone as his enemy or adversary.
  31. If you want to strengthen your faith, you have to remove your hardness. Strong faith like a rock requires a softer heart than the wings of a bird. Diseases in life, accidents, damage, breakage of desires, and so on. Many other issues happen to us to change the attitude and to teach us widened our hearts. Our hearts must be so vast that all humanity can sleep in them, and even after that, there is room for more love in them.
  32. No-one of the moral and religious leaders needs to stand between you and your Lord. Not even your faith and your spiritual Murshid. Be sure to believe in your values and principles, but don’t impose them on others. If you keep breaking people’s hearts, it is not in your best interest to perform any religious duty. Please stay away from all kinds of idolatry because it will blur your spiritual vision. Just consider your Lord your real Murshid. Get Knowledge and cognition, but don’t make these sciences the goal of your life.
  33. In a world where everyone struggles to get to a place and become something, even though all this one day has to be left here. No matter how many carvings there are on the vessel, its usefulness is only due to its space; this space makes it a container. And that discovery and freedom keep us right.
  34. Confession does not mean that we are inactive, nor does it is the fatalism of Capitulation. Instead, it is quite the opposite. The real power is in recognition, a force that erupts from within us. Those who surrendered in the face of divine reality. They are in such perpetual peace that even if the whole world is suffering from temptations, there is no disturbance in this peace.
  35. In the world, equality and harmony do not lead us forward but lead us to opposition and contradiction. And as contradictory as the world is, they are all found within each of us. Thus necessary for a believer must meet the disbeliever within you. And a disbeliever also wants to discover the silent believer within him. Faith is a gradual journey for which there must be an antagonist, uncertainty, to reach the perfect man’s place.
  36. The world is based on the principle of action and its reaction. Not a drop of goodness or a particle of sinful lives without its response or result. Don’t be afraid of people’s deceptions and tricks. If anyone is preparing a trap for you, remember that Allah is also Khair Al-Makreen and is the best planner. Not a single leaf moves without his permission. Just believe in Allah with simplicity and completely. He does whatever he does wonderfully.
  37. God is a great artisan watchmaker. So real that everything on earth takes place at its time, not a moment before time and not a moment late. And this extraordinary watch, without exception, is perfect for everyone to work correctly and accurately. There is a moment of love and death for everyone.
  38. No problem if at any stage of life we ask ourselves, “Am I ready to change my lifestyle?” If a day of our lives has passed better as the day progresses, so does the place of great jealousy. With every moment and every breath, we want to keep renewing ourselves.  And there is only one way to give ourselves a new birth. “Dying before death.”
  39. The component keeps changing, but the whole thing remains the same. Whenever a thief leaves the world, a new person is created to take his place. And when every Saleh and Wali go, another Saleh and Wali take their place. In this way, everything changes at the same time, but the overall reality does not change.
  40. Life without love is meaningless. Don’t think what kind of love I am looking for?  This division of love creates more divisions. Love has no title, no specific definition. Love is the spirit of fire. When fire loves water, the universe emerges in a different shape and new style.
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What else have you found from forty rules of love?

Forty Rules of Love
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I am a student of politics and history. Your kind suggestions and corrections are always welcome.

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Ifikhar
Ifikhar
February 28, 2021 3:59 am

Touching 👌

Bari
Bari
March 1, 2021 8:53 am

learning a lot from your review

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