Mystical Utterances of Persian Sufi Poet, Hafiz Shirazi

The incomparable 14th century Persian Sufi poet, Hafiz Shirazi is unanimously considered by Persian speakers as the greatest Persian poet ever. The truly passionate and 'Divine Wine' intoxicated Hafiz Shirazi, in whose love intoxicated poetry even the most ordinary Persian words would reincarnate as beautiful sonnets of love filled with passionate tales of mystical wine drinking of the already intoxicated wandering Sufi dervishes being served by most beautiful wine-servers in the mystical tavern on the alley of the drunkards, is a poet par excellence.

It's precisely in the mystical tavern where Sufi dervishes would stand drinking the divine wine of love and tolerance shoulder to shoulder with Jews, Christians, Hindus, Sikhs, Zoroastrians and people of all faiths and creeds. I hope my translations can capture the stunning poetic beauty and intended mystical messages of Hafiz Shirazi. If you know Persian, I'm sure you can tell to what extent Hafiz Shirazi's brilliant mystical and spiritual outpourings get lost in translation...


Hey you so called sin free
devout practicing Muslim,

don't worry about the sins
of the non-observant Sufi dervishes!
Their sins won't be counted against yours!
Whether I'm good or bad,

you just mind your own business.
Because whatever I'm sowing right now,
I shall be reaping at the end.
No matter if the drunkards or perfectly sober ones,
everyone is seeking the Friend (God).
No matter if a Mosque or a Synagogue,
every house of worship is the House of God.
Hey you over preaching devout Muslim,
don't try persuading me
not to seek His eternal kindness.
Behind a veil,
how could you possibly tell
if there is a beauty or a beast?
It's not just me who's been turned away
from the gates of paradise,
my father, Adam was also expelled
from the eternal Garden of Eden!
O Hafiz,
on the day of resurrection
if you can get your hands
on a jar of wine,
you'll be elevated straight to the heaven
from this dark back alley of the tavern!
Hafiz Shirazi.

عیب رندان مکن ای زاهد پاکیزه سرشت
که گناه دگران بر تو نخواهند نوشت
من اگر نیکم و گر بد تو برو خود را باش
هر کسی آن درود عاقبت کار که کشت
همه کس طالب یارند چه هشیار و چه مست
همه جا خانه عشق است چه مسجد چه کنشت
سر تسلیم من و خشت در میکده‌ها
مدعی گر نکند فهم سخن گو سر و خشت
ناامیدم مکن از سابقه لطف ازل
تو پس پرده چه دانی که که خوب است و که زشت
نه من از پرده تقوا به درافتادم و بس
پدرم نیز بهشت ابد از دست بهشت
حافظا روز اجل گر به کف آری جامی
یک سر از کوی خرابات برندت به بهشت
حافظ شیرازی


Hey you devout Muslim preacher,
what are you yelling for?
If my heart's gone out of its way,
what is it to you?
Go mind your own business!
Even If this love intoxication completely ruins me,
the very foundation of my existence
will rise up again from those love ruins.
Hafiz Shirazi.

برو به کار خود ای واعظ این چه فریاد است
مراد فتاد دل از کف، تو را چه افتادست
گر چه مستی عشقم خراب کرد ولی
اساس هستی من زان خراب آبادست
حافظ شیرازی


That fake and boastful 
devout practicing Muslim
doesn't have even the slightest idea 
how I'm actually feeling these days.
So whatever he tries over preaching,
I'm just going to simply ignore him!

On our spiritual path,
The bigger the fork in the road,
the greater the reward for the seeker.O my heart,
no genuine seeker can ever go astray 
from our mystical path of righteousness.
Hafiz Shirazi

زاهد ظاهرپرست از حال ماآگاه نیست
درحق ما هرچه گوید جای هیچ اکراه نیست
درطریقت هرچه پیش سالک آید خیر اوست
درصراط مستقیم ای دل کسی گمراه نیست
حافظ شیرازی


My only reason for entering
a Mosque or a Tavern
is seeking your union.
Other than that,
God Himself is my witness
how much I detest
visiting those kind of places!
Hafiz Shirazi

غرض ز مسجد و میخانه‌ام وصال شماست
جز این خیال ندارم خدا گواه من است
حافظ شیرازی


Me giving up drinking wine,
what kind of nonsense story is that?!
I think I'm smart enough to handle some intoxication!
The devout practicing Muslim is busy 
praying and begging for forgiveness
while I'm busy getting intoxicated 
and yearning for more!
So tell me: whose side are you on?!
Hafiz Shirazi.

من و انکار شراب این چه حکایت باشد
غالبا این قدرم عقل و کفایت باشد
زاهد و عجب و نماز و من و مستی و نیاز
تا تو را خود ز میان با که عنایت باشد
حافظ شیرازی

Come o Sufi,
our jar of wine
is so clear and spotless
like a shining mirror

you can see for yourself
the pure quality of its fine red wine.
Except for intoxicated Sufi dervishes
don't ask anyone
about those hidden secrets behind the veils.
Those high-positioned and very well-connected 
devout practicing Muslims,
they don't have even the slightest idea!
Hafiz Shirazi.

صوفی بیا که آینه صافیست جام را
تا بنگری صفای مِی لَعل فام را
راز درون پرده زِ رندانِ مَست پرس
کاین حال نیست زاهدِ عالی مقام را
حافظ شیرازی


Hey you devout practicing Muslim,
stop criticizing us, the pain-bearers
so much.

Pain is the only gift bestowed upon us
ever since the first day of creation.
No matter if it's the fine wine of paradise,
or that cheap wine of the tavern,
whatever He chooses to pour into our glasses,
we'll gladly drink every drop of it!
Hafiz Shirazi.

برو ای زاهد و بر دردکشان خرده مگیر
که ندادند جز اين تحفه به ما روز الست
آن چـه او ریخت بـه پیمانـه ما نوشیدیم
هم اگر خم بهشت است و اگر باده ی پست
حافظ شیرازی


The true blessings of 
fasting and Hajj-Pilgrimage
are bestowed upon the one
who makes a pilgrimage
to the tavern of love!
Listen to the tale of love by Hafiz,
and ignore those devout Muslim preachers,
though they always use
all sorts of fancy words!
Hafiz Shirazi.

ثواب روزه و حج قبول آن کس برد
که خاک میکده عشق را زیارت کرد
حدیث عشق ز حافظ شنو نه از واعظ
اگر چه صنعت بسیار در عبارت کرد
حضرت حافظ شیرازی

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