For six hundred years the Persian poet Haféz has been read, recited, quoted, and loved by millions of people in his homeland and throughout the world. In Haféz: Teachings of the Philosopher of Love new contemporary translations by one of the leading scholars of Haféz connect this traditional spiritual and philosophical wisdom to a modern vision of the world.
For six hundred years the Persian poet Haféz has been read, recited, quoted, and loved by millions of people in his homeland and throughout the world. In Haféz: Teachings of the Philosopher of Love new contemporary translations by one of the leading scholars of Haféz connect this traditional spiritual and philosophical wisdom to a modern vision of the world. The book includes over thirty complete poems by Haféz, accompanied by commentary from the authors on the meanings and contexts of the poetry and philosophies of this spiritual teacher. Authors Haleh Pourafzal and Roger Montgomery show how the visionary poet Haféz—whose work inspired Goethe, Nietzsche, and Ralph Waldo Emerson—can serve as an ideal source of inner renewal in our often troubled world, as well as a bridge between the West and Middle East, two cultures in desperate need of mutual empathy.
HALEH POURAFZAL (1956–2002) was the daughter of Abdol-Hossein Pourafzal, a lifelong student of Persian linguistics and direct descendant of the creator of the contemporary Farsi prose form. Haleh grew up tuned to the spirit of the great poet during her childhood in Tehran, where her father would perform daily recitations of Haféz's poetry. She drew upon her father's expertise in developing her own interpretations of the poet's verse. From the moment Haleh introduced her husband, Roger MONTGOMERY, to the poetry of Haféz, they shared a deep love and respect for his work. It was in the spirit of gaining a greater understanding of this great poet, sage, and philosopher that this book was born. Montgomery is also the author of Twenty Count: Secret Mathematical System of the Aztec/Maya and lives in Berkeley, California.
You are about to meet one of humanity's greatest friends and most delightful companions, a man named Shams-ud-Din Mohammad. He lived long ago in the fourteenth century in the Persian city of Shiraz in what is now southern Iran. Shams-udDin Mohammad was a seeker of wisdom who became a poet of genius, a lover of truth who has transcended the ages. His timeless message of liberation invites us to meet him in the tavern of the human spirit, to share a cup of wine, and to enjoy a blissful vision of humanity's highest potential. He emphasizes the “enjoy” part.
Shams-ud-Din Mohammad took the pen name “Haféz” and cleverly inscribed that signature into the final verses of nearly all his hundreds of surviving poems. Through the centuries, Haféz has been read, memorized, recited, quoted, and loved by millions of people in one of the world's most spiritually oriented societies. He remains Iran's most popular poet to this day.
Haféz the poet was a synthesizer of knowledge, a thinker about the human condition, and a reporter on his own journeys into higher awareness. Like his Persian predecessors Jalal-ud-Din Rumi and Omar Khayyam, he was a poet of God. But his vision was so all-embracing that his writing serves more as a tool for pointing to the totality of the Creator than as a litany of praise. A superbly educated man in absolute command of the subtle beauty of one of the world's most expressive languages, Haféz traced his roots of reference back to ancient Persia and extended his vision unimpeded into our own future. His mastery of poetic form empowered an endearingly informal style that has preserved his visionary content through the ages.
Haféz wrote of both the wine of the spirit and the wine of the grape. He burned with our hearts' longing and bubbled with our minds' humor. His full-length poems endure as in-depth essays on life, while virtually every individual couplet stands as a masterly homily of simple but profound advice:
Let neither pride nor rich delicacies delude you; this world's episodes extend not to eternity.
**Contents and Sample Pages**
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