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05-07-19  Turn Me to Gold 108 Poems of Kabir with Andrew Harvey

Who is Kabir?

Kabir is the greatest mystical poet of India. He lived between 1440-1527 in what was then Benares, and which is now Varanasi. He did not write his songs, but sang them and they became beloved by Muslims, Hindus and the Sikh gurus who placed hundreds of them in the core Sikh scriptures. His work has the directness of Jesus and the exalted mystical intensity of Rumi and with Rumi, he is the one of humanities two universal mystical poets.

After authoring more than 30 books, Andrew Harvey, Rumi scholar, mystic and founder of Sacred Activism, is releasing what may be his consummate work, Turn Me to Gold: 108 Poems of Kabir. Born in India and deeply influenced by its mystic traditions, Andrew became enraptured not only with the exquisite spiritual illumination he discovered in Kabir, but also in the poet’s grounding relevance to our troubled times. “Unlike Rumi,” writes Harvey, “Kabir is the tough, no-nonsense peasant who makes things real and fierce and right without any adornment. He is the master of laser-like clarity, simplicity, directness, passion and strength, and this laser-like purity and refusal to buy into any kind of illusion is exactly what spiritual seekers need amid our devastating global crisis.”

Written in the form of a symphony of four movements, Turn Me to Gold is both beautiful and blazing. The origin of the title Turn Me to Gold is a statement by Kabir that one drop of divine love can turn you to gold. What Andrew and Kabir mean by “gold” is someone who is fully embodied—not just inspired in the mind but who experiences God in the body, in the cells. The birth that is trying to take place on our planet, Harvey insists, is not only through people becoming conscious of the Divine but from those who have integrated and embodied the Divine. Kabir, then, is the supreme guide for allowing ourselves to be “turned to gold.”

Embellished by extraordinary, edgy photographs by Brett Hurd, illustrating the divinity of ordinary life, this book reveals our capacity to be turned to gold if we are willing to reject the madness of all fundamentalisms and engage in the arduous work of transformation. It compels us to move beyond mere mystical ecstasy into the death and rebirth that joyously await us on the journey.

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