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The Sun Magazine

Religion and Philosophy

Islam

Essays, Memoirs, and True Stories

A Month Without Rest

Travel Notes From Israel During The Intifada

My first night, I am awakened at two in the morning by either a bomb or a gunshot; I can’t tell which. Then at 4 A.M. the Jews start singing their sad song down at the Wailing Wall, followed by the bells from al-Aqsa Mosque at 4:45: the sounds of two great monotheistic religions disturbing a good night’s rest.

Essays, Memoirs, and True Stories

Venice Shimmers

Meanwhile, less than a day’s drive from here, the fighting continues in Bosnia, where tens of thousands have been killed or displaced, where starvation and concentration camps and rape hotels have become weapons in a campaign of ethnic extermination. Yet Washington is by and large indifferent, as Bosnia sits on no oil fields and sends neither Democrats nor Republicans to Congress.

Fiction

Kusadasi

In summer, cruise ships bring exultant droves of westerners to the town, who, along with extensive drug trafficking, have transformed the region into a wealthy, peaceful appendage to the otherwise bellicose, indigent body of Turkey. Like the thin layer of crude oil on the Mediterranean, affluence stratifies.

Fiction

To Know We Are Loved

An Excerpt From Reshad Feild’s The Invisible Way

The dun-colored plains of Anatolia were broken only by the sky and the hills to the north. I could just make out the city of Konya from the air. Known in biblical times as the ancient Iconium, Konya had been a center of trade and learning for nearly a millenium. It was also the home of Mevlana Jalālu’ddin Rumi, who was one of the greatest Sufi poets and mystics who ever lived. He is often called the Pole of Love since his knowledge of Universal Love, like the philosophers touchstone, brought the possibllity for the knowledge of completion beyond form. It was and is all embracing to anyone and to any religious background. Thus, Mevlana Jalālu’ddin Rumi was held in equal esteem by those from many diverse spiritual and philosophical traditions during his lifetime over 700 years ago, and I speculated that, since this is a time for the understanding of the unity of religious ideals, perhaps Konya would become a place of pilgrimage for all those seeking to understand the basic truth underlying all religions and all human aspiration.