The narrative of Layla and Majnun, written one thousand old ages before Romeo and Juliet, has been repeatedly compared to William Shakespeares drama because of the tragic love and decease of the chief characters in each narrative. Considered one of the most popular love narratives written in the Sufi tradition, the narrative, Layla and Majnun, has experienced many versions and interlingual renditions throughout the old ages. Writer, Nizami Ganjavi, a Iranian Sufi, has been referred to as the greatest romantic heroic poem poet in Iranian literature and turned the folk tale into a verse form. Nizami ‘s verse form has been referred to as a “ Sufi Romeo and Juliet ” by many readers. Although the tragic love and decease of the chief characters is a common subject between the two narratives, the differences in composing manners and character development make Nizami ‘s verse form more gratifying to read.

The scene of Layla and Majnun is the Arabian Desert in the Middle East. The male character named Qays was born to the greatest chieftan of the Banu Amir folk, besides known as sayyid, who was a really rich adult male. Layla was besides the girl of a chieftan about every bit powerful as sayyid. The two rapidly fell in love but were non allowed to be together because Layla ‘s male parent knew that Qay ‘s compulsion with his girl had made him a lunatic, or Majnun, as he was nicknamed. Layla ‘s male parent heard that Majnun was shouting Layla ‘s name out loud and took her out of school and confined her to a collapsible shelter in a desert cantonment. Majnun became brokenhearted and created love vocals and verse forms about Layla that he would sing when he would roll the desert. Majnun spent most of his clip in the desert while his male parent tried several times to bring around his grief, including a failed pilgrim’s journey to Mecca. Majnun cried, “ I pray to You, allow me non be cured of love, but allow my passion grow! Take what is left of my life and give it to Layla ‘s, yet allow me ne’er demand from her so much as a individual hair! Let me love for loves sake, and do my love a hundred times greater as it is this really twenty-four hours ” ( Reader, 204 ) .

Majnun frequently drew a crowd of people who would listen to his love vocals and who would copy them down. Layla became more beautiful and more love sick as clip went on. She besides sang love vocals that became popular among people and her vocals would make Majnun who in return would make a new vocal for Layla. While Majnun lived in the desert he became good friends with the animate beings. Nazami ‘s elaborate description said:

“ First the king of beasts, so the really hart that he had saved, and so the antelope, and the wolf, and the fox ; the wild buttocks joined their company, and the hare, and the timid gazelle. Majnun ruled over them all ; a male monarch was he, the cave was his tribunal. All around him were stones and irritants and firing sand. No topographic point on Earth was more bare than this, yet Majnun called it Eden, for he lived in peace with all his friends. Among the animate beings there was perfect harmoniousness ; the king of beasts ballad with the lamb, the wolf chased non the hare ; the gazelle went undisturbed before the fox. ” ( Reader, 212 )

Layla married Ibn Salam but neither of them was happy in the matrimony. Layla easy became ill, weak, and heartbroken and so she died. Majnun stayed at Layla ‘s grave for a month while the animate beings guarded him. He wept and grew weak and asked God to let go of him from his earthly signifier and convey him to Layla ‘s side. Majnun ‘s supplication was answered and he died and was buried following to Layla ‘s grave. The two deceases led to much grieving in both Layla ‘s and Majnun ‘s cantonment and their love narrative is still told today.

“ Sufism is basically the Path of Love, and the searcher is the lover in hunt of the Eternal Beloved. When the lover and the Beloved unite all that remains is Love. All that remains is the One, all that there is, is the Real ” ( Amat-un-Nur, 1 ) . Majnun is decidedly on the Path of Love, which leads him to Layla. In the terminal Majnun becomes one after inquiring God to let go of him from his earthly signifier and convey him to Layla ‘s side. Merely as Majnun acts in the verse form, “ A individual in love does non care about his comfort or slumber and is twenty-four hours and dark merely occupied in the contemplation of the Beloved ” ( Amat-un-Nur, 1 ) . Majnun no longer cares about himself one time he sees Layla and he spends the remainder of his life obsessed with Layla. Majnun is decidedly exposing Sufism and is similar to the quotation mark, “ Sufis seek extinction of the ego, that is to decease to the universe and to exist merely in God ” ( Reader, 217 ) . Majnun ‘s devotedness to Layla and his show of love for Layla is similar to his love for God. Sufism is besides obvious in Majnun since he is invariably rolling and vocalizing, merely as this quotation mark describes ; “ Sufis are frequently called “ whirling dervishes, for their usage of vocal and dance to bring on religious provinces ” ( Reader, 217 ) .

The passion and tragic decease of Romeo and Juliet is really similar to that of Layla and Majnun. The narrative is made up of two baronial feuding households, the Montagues and the Capulets, who live in Verona, Italy. Romeo, who is a Montague, is originally in love with a miss and goes to a mask with his cousin Benvolio at the Capulet ‘s Villa in hopes of seeing the miss at that place. The Capulet household programs for their girl, Juliet, to go married to a adult male named Paris.

Not cognizing at first that Juliet is a Capulet, Romeo immediately falls in love with Juliet during the mask. After the party, Romeo wanders into the garden near Juliet ‘s window and they call out to each other and exchange vows. Romeo confesses his love to his friend Friar Lawrence, who agrees to get married Romeo and Juliet at one time. Members of the Capulet household, who are outraged that Romeo and his friends showed up at their mask, challenge them to a affaire d’honneur and a member of each feuding household is killed. Romeo is banished from Verona for the slaying and must go forth for Mantua. Romeo and Juliet meet for the last clip and Romeo leaves for Mantua. Juliet learns she is to get married Paris in a few yearss and goes to Friar Lawrence for aid. They plan for her to imbibe a potion that will do her appear dead so she will be placed in the household crypt and Romeo will mouse back for her. The nuptials is earlier than expected so Juliet carries out imbibing the potion and Romeo ne’er receives the missive depicting the program. He learns of her decease and goes to the crypt where he foremost kills Paris and so drinks the toxicant and dies following to Juliet. Juliet awakens and sees Romeo dead so she kisses his lips trusting the toxicant will kill her. It fails so she stabs herself through the bosom with a sticker and dies on Romeo ‘s organic structure. The Capulets and Montagues find the organic structures of their kids and agree to stop the feud.

The narratives are similar in that the lovers are kept from one another by their parents and finally decease in the terminal. It seems that they ca n’t populate without each other. When Romeo sees Juliet for the first clip at the mask and when Majnun sees Layla for the first clip they know that they are destined for each other. Layla becomes weaker and Majnun becomes crazier the longer they are without each other. Layla seems to decease of a broken bosom which causes Majnun to return to her grave and remain until he excessively dies so that he can be with Layla. Juliet ca n’t stand being without Romeo when he is exiled so she and Friar Lawrence invent a program to acquire them back together. Similar to Majnun, Romeo comes back to see the grave where Juliet is and dies. When Juliet wakes up and sees Romeo dead she ca n’t populate without him so she kills herself to be with him.

The narratives are besides similar in their household dissensions. While Majnun and Layla ‘s households are n’t precisely friends, they did non feud to the point that the Capulet ‘s and Montague ‘s did. Layla ‘s male parent did decline to allow her get married Majnun and arranged for her to get married Ibn Salam. Similarly, Juliet was set up to get married Paris, even though she was in love with Romeo. Majnun ‘s male parent even goes to Layla ‘s cantonment and asks Layla ‘s male parent to allow the two marry. The narratives ‘ similarities continue with the aid of a sure friend. Majnun ‘s friend, Nowfal, gathers an ground forces to contend against Layla ‘s male parent in order to assist Majnun acquire Layla.

One of the major differences for me is the presentation of the two narratives. The tragic, dramatic drama format of Romeo and Juliet was dialogue merely and does non let the reader to acquire a true sense of some of the inside informations that were conveyed in the narrative manner of Majnun and Layla. Because a drama is intended to be performed by histrions who personalize their lines and may animate their audience with their playing, merely reading the narrative was instead dull. The narrative narrative, on the other manus, was much more entertaining and created graphic descriptions of both characters and scenery. Early in the verse form Nazami vibrantly described the beauty of Layla: “ She was every bit slender as a cypress tree and every bit graceful as a bird ; her tegument was every bit white as milk, her cheeks and lips were ruddy as roses, and she had the darting black eyes of a gazelle. But even darker than her eyes was her raven hair ; her hair was more bright than the sky at midnight, and so she was called Layla, or Night ” ( Reader, 200 ) . As Majnun travelled throughout the desert, he looked into the soft eyes of a gazelle caught in a trap and recalled the soft, black eyes of Layla. At one point, Majnun was found in the desert, “ in a desolate gorge, wrestling like a serpent, groaning and sighing, and lifting and falling upon the stones ” ( Reader, 204 ) . A visual image of the desert was created with the words, “ aˆ¦stones and thorn-bushes and stat mis of sand. ” Nazami ‘s narrative is full of descriptions that besides give the narrative alternate meetings ( how Majnun ‘s love for Layla is like his love for God ) that are similar to the mysterious poesy of other Sufi authors.

Many noteworthy Sufi writers have guided legion people throughout the universe in their hunt to achieve Sufi cognition. Some noteworthy Sufi writers include: Sheikh Saadi, Hakim Jami, Mohamed El-Ghazali, Omar Khayyam, Farid ud-Din Attar and Jalaludin Rumi. Considered both an influential Sufi writer every bit good as a popular Persian poet, Rumi uses his Hagiographas to distribute Sufi beliefs. In one of Rumi ‘s verse form he states, “ The Sufi opens his custodies to the existence and gives off each blink of an eye, free. Unlike person who begs on the street for money to last, a dervish begs to give you his life ” ( Reader, 224 ) . In Layla and Majnun, both characters urgently want to be together to the extent that Majnun begs God to allow him decease in order to go one. In another one of Rumi ‘s verse form, he states, “ When your love reaches the nucleus, earth-heavals and bright irruptions spew in the air. The universe becomes one religious thing, that simple, love blending with the spirit ” ( Reader, 223 ) . He is stating that one time person is wholly in love, everything becomes one and becomes closer to God. This poem connects to Majnun and how his utmost love makes him one with both Layla and God

After comparing the two narratives of Romeo and Juliet and Layla and Majnun, it is easy to reason that they portion several similarities.A Both the narratives have chief characters that are frantically in love with each other and finally decease to be together in the end.A The narrative of Layla and Majnun is more alone since it is full of rich descriptions and the drama of Romeo and Juliet offers more duologue but less description. The Sufi significance of the Layla and Majnun narrative is that love is the ne’er stoping quest to happen God. By loving Layla with such strength, Majnun was really loving God every bit good. Majnun was n’t needfully aware of what was go oning but his compulsion of Layla kept him on class in his journey to God. Both Romeo and Juliet and Layla and Majnun are renowned love narratives that portion some common elements yet present a narrative in separate ways. Harmonizing to Rumi, “ Lovers do n’t eventually run into someplace. They ‘re in each other all along ” ( Rumi quotes, 1 ) .