Nizami Ganjavi: Majnun

Nizami Ganjavi (1141 – 1209 CE) was born in the Azerbaijan city of Ganja, and spent most of his life in the south Caucasus.  He is one of the major figures of Persian literature, and his works include a life of Alexander, the telling of “Leila and Majnun,” and the equally renowned Eastern love story, “Khosrow and Shirin.” He was not a Sufi teacher, but his poetic skill greatly influenced the work of subsequent generations of Sufis.  Compare the thought given here with that of Iraqi in this recent post.


One night desperate Majnun prayed tearfully,
‘O Lord of mine who has abandoned me,
Why hast Thou “Majnun” called me?
Thou hast made me a pillow of wild thorns,
Made me roam day and night without a home.
What dost Thou want from my imprisonment?
O Lord of mine, listen to my plea!’

The Lord replied, ‘O lost man,
With Leila’s love I have your heart filled;
Your love of Leila is My will.
The Beauty of Leila that you see
Is just another reflection of Me.’

Tr. Mahmood Jamal

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.