Silence is the language of God; all else is poor translation.

I found this quote, like many, attributed to Rumi (one, two, three non-verifiable sources). Since Rumi quotes are notoriously often mistranslated or misattributed, this needs a better source to be sure.

Did Rumi actually write this? If so, where?

1 Answer 1


It was saint john of the cross who wrote, "silence is the first language of God," and the contemporary Christian mystic, Father Thomas Keating, who added, "all else is a poor translation." But today people are very lazy about checking references and attribute every spiritual saying that sounds good to Rumi, Laotzu, or Buddha.

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    Thank you for the information. Please can you add some exact sources or links to make this more verifiable? E.g. where/when did Saint John of the Cross and Father Thomas Keating say these things?
    – Rand al'Thor
    Commented Jun 9, 2023 at 3:51

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