Category: Articles

Turning to Hafez


by Jila Peacock

I was born in Tehran to an English mother and Iranian father, and, although English was my mother tongue, my first written language was Persian, which I studied from the age of seven at my Iranian primary school. I remember being introduced at that time to snippets of Ferdousi in my first textbooks, to Sa‘di, my father’s favorite poet, and Edward Fitzgerald’s translations of Khayyam, which my mother would always recite by heart. My introduction to Hafiz came much later in life.

Divine Love

by Alireza Nurbakhsh

The first time I read Rumi’s story of Moses and the Shepherd, I was struck by the fact that the shepherd was much closer to God than Moses even though the shepherd’s conception of God was not even remotely plausible. Years later, when I revised this story, it appeared to me that Rumi had unravelled a deep mystery of divine love; in order to love God, one does not need to have a correct conception or description of God; what is required is a burning heart.


Daughter of Sufism


by Yousef Daoud

Hazrat Noor-un-nisa Inayat Khan, from an esteemed family lineage in India, has in recent decades merged as one of the most illuminated practitioners of the Sufi path of chivalry (javanmardi in Persian or futuwwa in Arabic).  Recognized decades after her death as a Sufi saint, she has been afforded an honor rarely given to Sufis who have not served as a master of a Sufi order. Daughter of Sufism is a biographical account of Noor Inayat Khan’s early life, British Secret Intelligence service and her imprisonment and death in Germany during World War II. (Photo courtesy of International Sufi Order.)

(Photo of Noor Inayat Khan courtesy of Sufi Order International)

Visit the Store to Subscribe or Buy the Current Issue and Back Issues


From History to Her Story

Women in Sufi Discourses

by Safoura Nourbakhsh

The history of women in Sufism has not been written yet.  The problem with our historical understanding of women mystics of the early period and even the later generations is that none of them left any writings. We therefore have to piece together their portraits from the writings of male Sufi historians and biography compilers, who had their own views of womanhood and whether or not it was possible for women to embark on a spiritual path alongside their male counterparts.  This article explores the competing narratives of women in emerging Sufi discourses.


(Photo by Mena Momeni.)

Visit the Store to Subscribe or Buy the Current Issue and Back Issues