ICCNC: Dr. Abdol Karim Soroush, intellectual, theorist, and philosopher of Sufism and ethics will deliver a series of lectures explaining and analyzing ten chapters of Saadi’s Bustan. The lectures will be held at 7:30 pm on the third Friday of every month at the Tohid Foundation in San Jose.
The lectures, as with those on the Ghazaliyat e Shams, the first book of the Masnavi e Ma’navi, and the series on The Theological Journey in Modern Society are being put on with the support and cooperation of the Islamic Cultural Center of Northern California.
The Saadi lecture series has also received support from the Tohid Foundation of San Jose.
In this series of lectures, the first until now that Dr. Soroosh has delivered on the Bustan, each of the ten chapters will be analyzed and interpreted individually. Typically, explanation and analysis of this work is a rare occurrence. This is a wonderful opportunity for Iranians residing in Northern California, especially teachers and instructors at Persian language schools to become more familiar with the depth and splendor of a book that has been so important and influential in our literature and culture in an event that will delight attendees with a profound and novel approach to this work.
Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882), American poet and sage, called Saadi the “ideal poet” and names him thirty times in his own poetry. He says about Saadi, “Humankind favors Saadi. He is a poet of friendship, kindness, heroics, abnegation, mercy, serenity, and divine grace.”
According to Dr. Gholamhossein Yousafi, publisher of the most important edition of Saadi’s Golestan, Bustan, and Ghazaliyat, “Saadi’s ideal world is more apparent in Bustan than it is in Golestan. For this reason, Bustan’s original name was the Book of Saadi; only later, due to enthusiasm over its companion volume Golestan, was the name Bustan bestowed upon it.
In Bustan, Saadi’s utopia shows us a poet enlightened far beyond the times in which he lived and pondering thoughts that resonate with humankind in the modern world. It’s not without reason that he is called a world poet in the West and that many of his poems have been highly praised for their sense of sublime humanity.
We must remember that each collection of works by every one of the great Persian poets such as Moulavi, Ferdowsi, Hafez, Saadi, Nizami, Attar etc., contain elements of culture not bound by time or place. For this reason, the reader can look to their works and compare the situations therein to the present day, giving the reader breadth and insight to see world better, more acutely, and even more beautifully, to reflect on himself and his personal and social demeanor and little by little find the guidance to become a wise citizen.
It is hereby contended that if Iranian wishes to understand his collective cultural identity, it’s necessary to become familiar with these cultural touchstones and come to know their secrets, elegance, and allure and ultimately to follow them in thought and deed.
By attending Dr. Abdol Karim Soroosh’s lectures on explaining and analyzing Saadi’s Bustan, all Iranians residing in Northern California can take part in this intellectual opportunity and become acquainted once again with one of our culture’s great sources of pride. Don’t miss this chance.
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