Introduction by Professor Khalil Khatib Rahbar University of Tehran

Shamsed-din (Sun of the Religion) Mohammad a.k.a Hafiz (The title for a person who has memorized the entire Koran) one of the most remarkable Orafa (Sufi Gnostic) and a brilliant genius of humanities born around 700 (HQ) or 1200 (CE) in Shiraz Iran. Not much is known about his life, perhaps by his own volition. He did not busy himself with the arts of poetry instead most of his life he memorized and studied Koran and Koranic sciences. In spite of his lack of effort in poetry, his poetic work has strongly influenced the poets of India, Turkistan, Iraq and Azerbaijan.

Due to this life-long study of Koran, his poetry is riddled by Koranic phrases and inspired by Koranic concepts. His voyage on the Path of Love was gradual, accomplished small steps at a time and indeed his poems are the travel journal of this voyage to chart his spiritual conquests.

Kharaabaat (The Ruins) is the tavern of Ma’reft (Divine Noesis) wherein the selfishness and self-worship is destroyed and therefore called the ruins. Ruined is the Zahir (Outer Manifest) and cultivated is the Baten (Depth Within). Hafiz has drunk the wine of Ma’refat (Divine Noesis) and ruined his hypocrisy, indeed he has worked very hard to be one faced:Tthe face of his heart within.

He did not believe in meditation via hardship, hunger and suffering, instead he believed in serving the people as a servant (Khadem: Service Provider). True sincerity (Ikhlaas) is via serving the needy. He avoided by all means academic titles and careers, which they were readily due to him had he asked for.

Addition by Dara:

Hafiz was a not a womanizer drunk alcoholic as the Iranian morons falsely libeled him. Next to his poems the painters put the pictures of women offering wine to a dirty old man with sleepy eyes and that was for the following reasons:

1.    Party loving lewd Iranians who needed an excuse from a religious and spiritual leader in order to consume intoxicants and unlawful intercourse with women.
2.    Clergy who needed to slender Hafiz to discredit him as a religious and spiritual leader and indeed Sufism at large.
3.    Alcohol and publishing industry that needed a myth to draw strong attraction out of the innocent Iranian youth. Every household have his Divan originally because they learnt the Koran and Sufism from it but later on was used to draw people to vices.

Western Sufis should take heed and stay away from such blatant fraud and slender. Write the publishers and fame-hungry ignorant authors who are blowing death into Western Sufism by means of such blasphemous strategies.

May Allah Almighty clear the name of Hafiz, expose his slanders and bring to light the genius of this young man to the West as well as humanity at large.

© 2004-2001,  Dara O. Shayda