Afghanistan’s famed mystic poet Haidari Wujodi died of illness on Wednesday. He was 81 years old. Wujodi was born in 1939 in the northern province of Panjshir and was drawn to poetry, mysticism and literature from an early age.
During his lifetime, the poet led literature and poetry meetings about the Masnavi Manavi, which is one of the most influential works of Sufism. (The Masnavi, or Masnavi-ye-Ma’navi, also written Mathnawi, is an extensive poem written in Persian by Jalal al-Din Muhammad Balkhi, also known as Rumi). Wujodi instructed many young Afghans about poetry and its meaning.
The death of Wujodi compelled many Afghan political leaders and academic personalities–people from all layers of society–to pay him tribute.
“Haidari Wujodi was one of the pioneers of culture, literature and one of the prominent Rumi scholars who spent his entire life on research,” said Abdullah Abdullah, the head of the High Council for National Reconciliation.
“I was saddened to hear of the passing of the Sufi scholar and the famed mystic poet of the country,” Afghan former president Hamid Karzai said in a statement on Wednesday.
“His services and endeavors in the field of poetry and literature have been tremendous and his death is a major loss,” said Karzaiږ
“Haidari Wujodi was, for me, not only a poet but also a tireless social reformer. He dedicated his life to the Afghans so that they could return to love, moderation and humanity, and find the lost song of life in the land of Rumi. His work helped revive the cultural design of our life,” said Saleem Payenda, a politician and entrepreneur in New Delhi, India.
“Humanity has lost a true being of light in the Afghan mystic and poet Haidari Wujodi, who kept a desk in Kabul library where people would come for poetry, help and enlightenment. Grace in the beyond, Master,” tweeted Megan Eaves, a British writer.
“He was a gem in the contemporary history of Afghan arts & literature,” tweeted Samiullah Hussaini, UN Fellow at The Hague Academy of International Law.
“The world is still blacked out on the wine of the grape — all this human killing, all this destruction, this ruin… What is worthy of the dignity of a human, we haven’t reached that yet.” – Haidari Wujodi, as translated by Meelad Asi, in “Mawlana of Our Time.”
“Deeply shocked and shattered by the demise of Ustad Wujodi. Indeed, he was the trove of knowledge, a genuine Sufi and a valuable asset for our literature and poetry. Our immediate and deepest debt is to him for his services. Onerous lectures and poetry (were) left in him. A Great Loss. RIP,” said Ehsan Fatah, a Kabul resident.
“The mystics, the poets, the artists, are the guardians of Kabul’s soul. They remind us of the beauty and power of love amidst war and intolerance. Ustad Wujodi–his quiet devotion, his generous heart–exemplifies what I was taught about Islam as a child by my father who upheld Sufism,” said Shahrzad Akbar, the head of the Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission.
May others described Wujodi as a gem in the contemporary history of Afghan arts and literature.
Wujodi wrote and published 14 books of poetry and literature.
“Haidari Wujodi was a national treasure, a Sufi poet whose voice and words shook a nation at war!” tweeted Haris Tarin, an expert on national security and civil rights.
Afghans have described Wujodi’s death as a major loss in the country’s academic field.
Some of Wujodi’s best-known works:
Eshq wa Jawani (Love and youth), Rahnamayee-e-Manzoom-e-Panjsher, Naqsh-e-Omid (The Role of Hope), Ba Lahzahayee Sabz-e-Bahar (With the Green Moments of the Spring), Sali Dar Madar (A Year in Orbit), Sayaee Marefat (The Shadow of Knowledge), Soor-e-Sabz-e-Sada (The Green Image of Sound), Miqat-e-Tazzul, Ghurbat-e-Mahtab (The Homelessness of the Moon), Lahzahayee dar Ab wa Atash (Moments in Water and Fire), Away-e-Kabood (The Blue Voice), Arghanoon Eshq (The Purple Love), Shikwa-e-Qamat-e-Muqawomat (The Glory of the Strength of Resistance)
“The heart is like a mirror,” Wujodi wrote, “If it is cleansed of the dust and fog, whichever way or object you aim it at the reflection of it would be reflected in the mirror.”