AS SALAATO WAS SALAAMU ALAIKA YA RASOOLULLAH
You may be tired by ten cycles of prayer;
I may not be worn out by five hundred.
One goes barefoot all the way to the Ka`bah,
and another is totally exhausted
just going as far as the mosque.
One in utter self-devotion gives away his life,
while another agonizes over the gift of a loaf.
This middle way belongs to the realm of the finite,
for that finite has a beginning and an end.
A beginning and end are necessary
to conceive of the middle point.
As the Infinite doesn't have limits,
how can you apply a mean to it?
~ ~ ~ ~ ~
To be-dah rak`at-e namâz âyi malul
man be-pânsad dar niyâyam dar nohul
Ân yeki tâ Ka`beh hâfi mi ravad
v-ân yeki tâ masjed khvod mi shavad
Ân yeki dar pâk bâzi jân be-dâd
v-ân yeki jân konad tâ yek nân be-dâd
In vasat dar bâ-nehâyat mi ravad
keh mar ân-râ avval o âkher bovad
Avval o âkher be-bâyad tâ dar ân
dar tasavvor ganjad awsat tâ miyân
Bi-nehâyat chon na-dârad do taraf
kay bovad u-râ miyâneh monsaraf
-- Mathnawi II: 3537-3542
Version by Camille and Kabir Helminski
Threshold Books, 1994
Persian transliteration courtesy of Yahyá Monastra