Moslih Eddin Saadi ~ Poet

I was recently asked to create a piece incorporating a verse from the medieval Persian Sufi poet Moslih Eddin Saadi. Saadi was born in Shiraz, Iran in the 13th Century. Though less well-known than other Persian poets such as Rumi and Hafiz, Saadi travelled widely throughout his long life and is famed for the quality of his prose and the depth of his thought.

Many of his works are available online including: Bustan (Orchard) written in 1257, and Gulistan (Rose Garden) a book of practical spiritual wisdom written in 1258.

I went in search of some of his memorable lines…
“A traveller without observation is a bird without wings.”
“The heart is like a musical instrument of many strings, all the chords of which require putting in harmony.”
“The rose and thorn, the treasure and dragon, joy and sorrow, all mingle into one.”
“Humans are ingredients of the same potion,
Thus are similar in their creation,
If one ingredient feels the pain,
Other ingredients will not restrain,
If you’re careless about humans sufferings,
You’re not deserved to be called human beings.”

“If of thy mortal goods thou art bereft
And from thy slender store
Two loaves alone to thee are left,
Sell one, and with the dole
Buy hyacinths to feed thy soul”


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