What I have personally experienced and observed is that the purest and most adored knowledge, poetry and artistic creativity have been inspired by signs from the divine. When we look deeply into western philosophy, we often find that individuals have, in essence, re-processed religious texts using different words, thereby removing the core of the divine […]
You have not danced so badly my dear, Trying to hold hands with the beautiful one You have waltzed with great style, my sweet, crushed angel, To have ever neared God’s heart at all. Our partner is notoriously difficult to follow, And even his best musicians are not always easy to hear, So what if […]
The Poetry Of Hafiz
Hafiz, a Sufi poet, expressed in poetry love for the divine, and the intoxicating oneness of union with it. Hafiz, along with many Sufi masters, uses wine as the symbol for love. The intoxication that results from both is why it is such a fitting comparison. Hafiz spoke out about the hypocrisy and deceit that exists in society, and was more outspoken in pointing this out than many poets similar to him.
Like The Morning Breeze
Like the morning breeze, if you bring to the morning good deeds,
The rose of our desire will open and bloom.
Go forward, and make advances down this road of love;
In forward motion, the pain is great.
To beg at the door of the Winehouse is a wonderful alchemy.
If you practice this, soon you will be converting dust into gold.
O heart, if only once you experience the light of purity,
Like a laughing candle, you can abandon the life you live in your head.
But if you are still yearning for cheap wine and a beautiful face,
Don’t go out looking for an enlightened job.
Hafiz, if you are listening to this good advice,
The road of Love and its enrichment are right around the curve.
From: Drunk on the Wind of the Beloved
Translated by Thomas Rain Crowe
I know the way you can get
When you have not had a drink of Love:
Your face hardens,
Your sweet muscles cramp.
Children become concerned
About a strange look that appears in your eyes
Which even begins to worry your own mirror
Squirrels and birds sense your sadness
And call an important conference in a tall tree.
They decide which secret code to chant
To help your mind and soul.
Even angels fear that brand of madness
That arrays itself against the world
And throws sharp stones and spears into
And into one’s self.
O I know the way you can get
If you have not been drinking Love:
You might rip apart
Every sentence your friends and teachers say,
Looking for hidden clauses.
You might weigh every word on a scale
Like a dead fish.
You might pull out a ruler to measure
From every angle in your darkness
The beautiful dimensions of a heart you once
I know the way you can get
If you have not had a drink from Love’s
That is why all the Great Ones speak of
The vital need
To keep remembering God,
So you will come to know and see Him
As being so Playful
Just Wanting to help.
That is why Hafiz says:
Bring your cup near me.
For all I care about
Is quenching your thirst for freedom!
All a Sane man can ever care about
Is giving Love!
From: ‘I Heard God Laughing – Renderings of Hafiz’
Translated by Daniel Ladinsky
Nietzsche said: “We interpret ourselves as a unity in a world of images, which we created”. Do I think this statement can be used to interpret Ali’s life experience before he starts his journey as told in Deserts and Mountains?
There was a degree of contempt in Ali’s heart that caused him some uneasiness toward others. This in many ways created his suspicious character that possessed an inability to trust other human beings or value contrary ways of being. Ali was plagued by Turkish and Islamic dogmas, which imply that one should not criticize the established order, the penalty of which could be very harsh. These ways of being are largely unquestioned and very much an embedded way of thinking, but we witnessed Ali struggle under the weight of these burdensome and poisonous beliefs. Going through this schooling of indoctrination, this type of perceived “unity in a world of images, which we create” can turn a person into a very strange being. It is a process of being imprisoned for the rest of one’s life, if somehow the means cannot be found to challenge what has been taught.
The personal emotional stress that comes from a relationship breakdown along with all the other issues, which had been going on the background for Ali became too much to bear. At that point in his life, he felt trapped, comparable to living in a prison cell without any light, very little possibly of imagining better conditions of the heart and mind, without an apparent exit door in sight. It was an excruciating, daily pain from which Ali needed to liberate himself, in order to live a freer and more fulfilling life.
I can relate to Nietzsche in many ways and believe that he may have been a disguised eccentric mystic who could not be understood by his countrymen of the time—unfortunately even now. He had interesting connections to Sufi poets like Hafiz and I admired his works during my university years. He had profound thoughts and at the time I was not able to comprehend most of them, as they were too complex and unconventional.
I am happy that a person like Nietzsche stepped on the face of this earth. I believe he would be very much disoriented after discovering what was going on in his culture, especially with people of great intelligence and of religious persuasion in our time. He did what he had to do and he could have done better. Unfortunately he could not find a balance and eventually collapsed under the burden of painful experiences. We might also imagine that Ali could have easily shared this same fate, given the level of anguish he experienced in his soul and the difficult questions that he sought to find answers.
- Friedrich Nietzsche’s Assorted Opinions and Maxims (mystillwater.wordpress.com)
- Nietzsche vs. Maximilian Kolbe on the Uber-man (cantuar.blogspot.com)
- Transcend (sebastianmarshall.com)
- Nietzsche: The Good, The Bad And The Evil (bdtamanna.wordpress.com)
- Nietzsche, Zarathustra, Tocqueville, Mill (The Debate) (apropus.wordpress.com)