The Illuminated Hafiz

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Experience the immortal poetry of Hafiz, the great Persian mystic, translated by Coleman Barks, Robert Bly and others and paired with luminous illustrations by Michael and Saliha Green.

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Rare, indeed, when artistic image so passionately weds heaven-sent spirit word, but here it is! Michael and Saliha Green’s exquisite illustrations make you pause in awe. Together in divine conspiracy with Hafiz’s wisdom, we readers are catapulted into the seventh heaven.

—Rebecca Alban Hoffberger, Founder/Director, American Visionary Art Museum, Baltimore

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Who is the Beloved? Is it the lover waving shyly from their window? A faithful friend or lover with whom you've shared your most intimate secrets? Or is it God, beckoning from the infinity of the Beginningless Beginning? For Hafiz of Shiraz, the Beloved was all of these things and more. The Illuminated Hafiz, with its compelling imagery and brilliant new translations, is a prism through which Hafiz’s radiance shines down through the centuries to light up our contemporary world.

TO PRE-ORDER THE BOOK. Please email for wholesale consideration.

For more information, you can go to Michael Green’s author’s page on Amazon. For media inquiries, review copies or to request an interview, contact: Samantha Sacks at Sounds True •


Take a tour through Michael Green's studio set up for Fall

This book was—and still is—an exciting cooperative venture, and we are so grateful for the love and effort of so many in bringing forth and amplifying the message of one of the world’s greatest mystic poets.

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Building Bridges of Love

Jonathan and His Holiness the Dalai Lama

at The World Summit

of Nobel Peace Laureates

Jonathan Granoff, who provides such beautiful commentary for The Illuminated Hafiz, will be available for interviews, as well as book readings with music and lively conversation.

That the poetry of the great Persian mystics Rumi and Hafiz is so popular in the U.S., as well as beloved in every household in Iran, demonstrates that these two timeless messengers of hope and peace are still building bridges between peoples and cultures.

Jonathan will introduce us to the genius of Hafiz who was immersed in the remembrance of God with every breath, yet stayed fully engaged with the realities and vicissitudes of life here on earth. His gift was to lift everyone up, sinner and saint, with the beauty, wit and humor of his words, persuading them to go beyond the limits of their minds—to catch a glimpse of the grandeur of their own souls. And this work continues still . . .

Contact Jonathan for his availability.


The Pearl Mosque

O such a delicate pearl.

How I long to pierce it

 in the darkest night.

—Hafiz (tr. Peter Booth)

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In the Beginningless Beginning, the Sufis say we were given the treasure of the precious pearl of wisdom. Its essence is a pure drop of rain that falls from heaven onto the ocean of light within the heart, then sinks and falls into the shell made of unshakeable faith in the Holy One.

The Light accepts this pure drop and takes it deep inside. There it matures into a luminous pearl resplending like a full moon in the darkest night.The joyful, radiant heart then becomes the loving place where truth dwells and all lives turn in prayer.  

—Jonathan Granoff

Dr. Omid Safi

Dr. Safi, scholar and author of Radical Love: Teachings from the Islamic Mystical Traditions, is a frequent columnist for On Being. He graciously provided both an insightful introduction to Hafiz, and as a native Farsi speaker, he has brought forth some exquisite translations. Thank you, Omid-jan! He’ll be leading a retreat on Radical Love: The Legacy of the Prophetic Traditions, at Mercy By The Sea on October 25-27th.

Omid Safi leads spiritual tours every year to Turkey, Morocco, or other countries, to study the rich multiple religious traditions there. The trips are open to everyone, from every country. More information is available at Illuminated Tours.

He is director of Duke University’s Islamic Studies Center. He specializes in the study of Islamic mysticism and contemporary Islam and frequently writes on liberationist traditions of Dr. King, Malcolm X, and is committed to traditions that link together love and justice.

Omid is the past chair for the Study of Islam at the American Academy of Religion. He has written many books, including Progressive Muslims: On Justice, Gender, and PluralismCambridge Companion to American IslamPolitics of Knowledge in Premodern Islam; and Memories of Muhammad. His forthcoming book is on the famed mystic Rumi.

Omid is among the most frequently sought out speakers on Islam in popular media, appearing in The New York TimesNewsweekWashington Post, PBS, NPR, NBC, CNN, other international media. He can be reached regarding speaking engagements at

I’ve heard nothing lovelier than the melody of love
a keepsake lingering in this whirling azure dome

(tr. by Omid Safi)

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Many thanks to old friend Gary Elliot (aka Amir Hamza) of Western Gate Productions who contributed photos to The Illuminated Hafiz and to this website. We wish him safe travels from Carlsbad to Baisha Village in Yunan, China!

We are Witness, for proposed Afterculture Installation

Michael Green is making art within a new global context. It is born as an intuitive, archaic response to the spiritual need at the core of the formidable social, economic and environmental challenges we face today. His work follows what he calls the River of Sanity—a luminous, clear, loving source of inspiration and creativity that runs through all faiths and cultures, adapting and incorporating wherever it goes. Surfacing from time to time, particularly in the archetypal world of traditional and sacred arts, it sometimes reveals the hidden source lying just beneath surface appearances.