When Covid began to change the way we lived our lives in early 2021 and BHC was mandated to close for two months, I was looking for a quote to add to my work email signature as a comfort for me and my clients.
The one I chose was from the Sufi Poet, Hafiz. It spoke to my struggle, but also inspired me to see the beauty of what I had. It allowed me to be in the present moment and I hoped it would gift my clients with this message as well.
This sky where we live is no place to lose your wings so love, love, love. - Hafiz
Recently, a dear friend was moved by this quote and sent me an article by Daniel Ladinsky for the BBC on how Hafiz inspires his readers to get the most out of their lives.
What follows is a short, edited version of the full BBC article. To read the full article feel free to click on the link within the title page of this blog. I will also include a few links at the bottom of the page for where to find one of the best collections of Hafiz poetry.
Shams-ud-din Muhammad Hafiz (c. 1320-1389) is one of the most beloved poets of the Persians and is considered by many, from different cultures, to be one of the seven literary wonders of the world. To be engaged by a true teacher like Hafiz is to have lasting ingredients put into your mind, that when cooked through contemplation help us lead a better life. Inherent in engaging someone's interest is to make them present.
Hafiz's poetry bestows its benevolence and ability to comfort, enliven and enrich those in need.
In hundreds of ways Hafiz addresses what impedes us from living a more fulfilled life. With unique, charming metaphors that he seems able to rain from the ground up, he longs to help the highest aspects in us, lead all the other parts to a place where we can breathe easier, kick back, and say: "Ahhhh, this world isn’t so bad, as a matter of fact – it is amazing!"
Once a young woman came to Hafiz and said,
"What is the sign of someone knowing God?"
And Hafiz became very quiet, and stood in silence
for nearly a minute... lovingly looking deep into the
young woman's eye, then softly spoke,
"My dear, they have dropped the knife. The person
who knows God has dropped the cruel knife
so often used upon their tender self and others."
- Edited from Daniel Ladinsky's article for the BBC January 9, 2017.
Turning the Tide - The Gift, Poems by Hafiz
McNally Robinson - The Gift, Poems by Hafiz