Masnavi

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The Masnavi or Masnavi I Ma'navi (مثنوی معنوی in Persian), also written Mathnawi or Mesnevi, is a six book collection of texts, poems, teaching stories and prayers written in Persian by Jalal al-Din Muhammad Rumi, the well known Persian Sufi saint and poet. The word Masnavi I Ma'navi means "Rhyming Couplets of Deep Spiritual Meaning." It is considered by some to be the most important work of literature in the Muslim world outside the Qur'an. In fact the Masnavi has often been called 'Quran-i-Farsi' i.e., "The Persian Koran". The Masnavi is indeed massive in scope and contains over 25,000 verses. Rumi referred to the Masnavi as "the roots of the roots of the roots of the (Islamic) Religion." Different versions of the Masnavi with a few hundred editions exist in Iran, India and Pakistan. However the original version is also in existence. Parts of the Masnavi were first translated into English by James Redhouse. Many passages were translated into Latin, as the passages would have been scandalous in the conservative Victorian England due to the seemingly salacious nature of some of the verses, a common practice in the writing of many Muslim and Christian mystics who used such allusions to describe their love of God. R. A. Nicholson was the first person to translate the whole Masnavi into english

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