Ananda Family News

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The Subject Tonight Is Love

The subject tonight is Love
And tomorrow night as well.

As a matter of fact,
I know of no better topic
For us to discuss
Until we all


The subject of this year’s Living Wisdom School play was Love, taking form in the life and poetry of Hafiz, mystic poet of medieval Persia. Over 70 children —every student in the school— took to the stage in a glorious pageant illustrating the transformation of human love into Divine love.

As a young man, Hafiz fell madly in love with the beautiful daughter of a family above his station, and began writing and reciting poetry that quickly gained renown. His feelings finally led him to undertake a 40-night vigil at the tomb of a great saint who was said to grant such a worthy supplicant’s heart’s desire. When he reached the end of the vigil, the archangel Gabriel appeared before him. In the radiant beauty of God’s angel, Hafiz forgot his human love and desired only to know and love God. And so Gabriel guided him to his spiritual teacher Shiraz, who would in time lead Hafiz and his poetry to God-realization.

If you think I am having more fun

Than anyone on this planet

You are absolutely correct.

There is a fascinating quality to LWS productions that was particularly powerful in this performance, which is that there very noticeably seemed to be two distinct plays going on simultaneously. If you tilt your head just right, you can see these are children who have grown into their voices, bodies, and self-control to widely varying degrees. You can feel the poetry’s translation into a new language, and into little bodies. It can almost seem like a school play.

But shift your mind and heart back over that subtle dividing line, and you can feel the enormous power behind these words and bodies, animating the entire hall. That’s where the real performance is taking place.  That’s the part that leaves you grinning through tears for the sheer beauty of it. That is God’s power as it acts through our own lives every day, made more visible to us for one beautiful evening on the stage.

The five Hafizes.

You can find some more photos here, and a beautiful slideshow here, courtesy of Heather.


Anonymous said...

Great Job Heather on the slideshow! Wonderful artistry.

Anonymous said...

To all of the actors, teachers, supporters, my great compliments, it was a professional and exceptional show, rarely seen in such a colorful, artistic, atmospheric way. It was such a pleasure to watch and listen to the play, and find the truth in the old poems of Hafiz still alive. The church and the community matched the topic and occasion perfectly. Thanks to all of you for this wonderful evening. Michaela

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