The greatest Sufi poet and perhaps the most outstanding mystical poet of any language was born in Balkh in 1207. His father, Baha' al-Din walad, was a religious scholar and Sufi who with the advent of Mongol invasion of Central Asia took his family wetstward, visiting Naishapur on the way to the Hicaz. It was here that the young Jalal al-Din met and received the blessing of Farid al-Din Attar, the outstanding Sufi poet of the day, whom he was to succeed in the annals of Persian Sufi poetry. The family made the pilgrimage to Mecca and then set out Northward to Anatolia and settled in the city of Konya, Turkey. It was here that Rumi was to spend the last forty-some years of his life, where he composed his peerless works, and where he received the inspiration for the sacred music and dervishes. Rumi became like his father, a religious scholar and mastered the sciencesof his day. He was also initiated into the mysteries of Sufism. But it was the meeting with the mysterious Sufi, Shams al-Din Tabrizi that set his soul on fire and turned him into an incomparable poet of Divine Love and Illumination.
Rumi composed his Mesnevi and Divan-i Sems ,two monumental works devoted to gnosis and divine ecstasy, following the encounter with Shams which changed the literary and spiritual landscape of the Persian And Turkish worlds. Rumi was not a poet who happened to practice Sufism, but great Sufi master-the rhythms of whose soul were expressed in poetry. He founded the Mesnevi Order which exercised such a profound influence in the Ottoman world as well as its poetic and musical arts. He became a lummious star for both Persian and Turkish speaking worlds and his influence in these worlds subsists to this day. Now Rumi one of the most universal of Islamic saints, is becoming known to West and the light of his teachings are beginning to illuminate the hearts and minds of many in the occident as it has guided numerous generations of world during past seven centuries.