Editors' note: Jalal ud-Din Rumi (1207–1273) was born in Balkh where he spent his early years. From there his family fled the Mongol invasion,
settling finally in Konya. Rumi is regarded as the greatest mystical poet of Islam and founded the Whirling Dervishes. Abdullah considers Rumi to be
one of the ‘big three’ of the Sufis, along with Attar and Hakim Sanai, both of whom influenced Rumi. He was just a young boy when he met Attar who
gave him a copy of The Conference of the Birds. Rumi wrote Discourses and The Masnavi, as well as thousands of mystical
odes, in a style that went far beyond that of his predecessors.
In Abdullah’s prayers for his teachers, Jalal ud-Din Rumi, referred to as ‘Beloved Caliph’, is the first mentioned. Rumi was a man No. 5 when he died and
later became a man No. 6.