Sufi stories have traditionally been a means of opening a portal that allows us to advance from our basic perceptions into states of extraordinary awareness. This collection of deceptively simple stories by renowned Rumi translator and Sufi Nevit Ergin has the ability to remove readers’ complacent sense of self and identity and to expand their ordinary awareness of reality from every possible direction. In his stories the primrose path we travel suddenly turns into a trickster’s hall of mirrors where we learn that we are not children of Adam and Eve so much as children of our perceptions.
The protagonists and antagonists of these stories are constantly morphing and exchanging places. They exist in a world where individuals are stalked by a cricket that is an “invisible monster with the face of a demon,” confront the ambiguous burden of ridding oneself of one’s own corpse, and discover the “invisible fence of reality” existing in the layers of a discarded piece of art. The symbols in these stories are booby traps designed to release the mind from the sense of its own importance and awaken the realization that “if you refuse to be born, you cannot die.” Blind faith, the author says, has proved itself incapable of producing wisdom, tolerance, or world peace. This is because the answers to humanity’s problems lie beyond our ordinary perception and require love and ecstasy to be made visible. Our thirst for wisdom and understanding must go to the fountain of universal truth. These stories provide water from that fountain.