Discover How Hafiz’s Spiritual Life and Vision Can Enlighten Your Own
Hafiz is known throughout the world as Persia’s greatest poet, with sales of his poems in Iran today only surpassed by those of the Qur’an itself. His probing and joyful verse speaks to people from all backgrounds who long to taste and feel divine love and experience harmony with all living things.
This beautiful sampling of Hafiz’s works captures his deep spiritual understanding, offering a glimpse into the vision that has inspired people around the world for centuries. Considered by his contemporaries as an oracle and often referred to as "Tongue of the Hidden" and "Interpreter of Secrets," Hafiz followed Sufism’s inner path on a quest to discover the hidden meaning of the universe, and shares his experiences and desire for union with the Divine in symbolic language that borders on magical.
Infused with the spirit of love and joy, this unique collection offers insight into Haiz’s spiritual philosophy and carefree mysticism that addresses the earthly beauty, pain, ecstasy, and longing that define human nature, and the divine adoration that promises to set the spirit free.
"Ambiguity is a major characteristic of Persian poetry, and Hafiz was one of the greatest masters of this artistic quality: each reader tends to see his or her own experiences reflected in the poems. As a result, it is usually unclear whether in a given verse he means actual wine or spiritual wine, a male or a female beloved, a human beloved or God, and so forth…. But after reading the same images over and over in ever-changing contexts, one gradually leaves behind the ordinary material world and enters into a realm in which everything symbolizes the beautiful qualities of the beloved, who ultimately is God and the source of Love."
—from the Preface by Ibrahim Gamard, annotator and translator, Rumi and Islam: Selections from His Stories, Poems, and Discourses—Annotated&Explained
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About the Author
Gertrude Bell (1868–1926) was an adventurer, scholar, linguist, and British intelligence officer. Bell's courageous travels in the Islamic world of the Middle East in the late nineteenth century offered some of the first Western understandings of the culture and people of the lands of modern-day Iraq and Iran. Her translations of the poems of Hafiz are still considered by many scholars to be the most faithful of any in the English language.
Ibrahim Gamard is a member of the Mevlevi Order, a 730-year-old Sufi order which originated with Rumi himself.
Table of Contents
Preface by Ibrahim Gamard 1
Who Is Hafiz? 11
A Short Introduction to Hafiz's Mysticism 33
The Poems 45
Notes to the Poems 99
About the Translator 117
Index of Poems (by title) 119
Index of First Lines 121
Other Books in the Mystic Poets Series 123