Everywhere veiledby Fakhruddin Iraqi
English version by William Chittick and Peter Lamborn Wilson
Original Language Persian/Farsi
by Your own Face
You are hidden from the world
in Your very manifestation.
Look where I will
I see Your Face alone;
in all these idols
I see only You.
Jealous lest You be recognized
at every instant
You dress Your Beauty
in a different cloak.
|-- from Fakhruddin Iraqi: Divine Flashes (Classics of Western Spirituality) , Translated by William Chittick / Translated by Nasr Seyyed Hossein|
/ Image by nasrul ekram /
I think we are all reeling. The terrible earthquake in Nepal, where the death toll keeps mounting in a region of the world that is a beacon of spirituality for so many. And then, here in the US, the turmoil in Baltimore in reaction to continuing patterns of racialized police violence across the country.
Even amidst terrible suffering and devastation, we have the opportunity to glimpse the face of God. Sometimes it is in a helping hand or a healing voice. A kind gaze that doesn't turn away is often the most powerful thing of all. A heart that breaks, yet remains engaged, that is what the world is always yearning for. To see, to feel, to care-- these require courage and the willingness to face pain rather than run from it. But, when we do that, and breathe through it, we discover our deep humanity... and perhaps something of our shared divinity.
A broken heart, a willing hand, and a clear seeing eye, these are the pathways to God.
Iraqi suggests to us that all of life, all of reality is a game of divine hide-and-seek.
Reading this poem raises a question-- As we walk daily through the world, do we merely look, or do we see? And when we truly see, how can we not occasionally pause in mute wonder and melt?
Look where I will
I see Your Face alone
I took last week off to preserve my energies in preparation for my talk over the weekend at the Real Myth and Mithril Symposium. My speech was on "The Cauldron of Inspiration: Bards, Wizards, and the Elixir of Poetry," exploring of the connections between poetry, enlightenment, and magic.
Several of you mentioned how disappointed you were that you couldn't be present at the talk. I have been told that there may have been a video recording of my talk. If there was a recording, I will see about making it available to everyone. Stay tuned.