Mystical Experience of Baba Kuhi

Baba Kuhi of Shiraz (~980 – 1050) was an Iranian Sufi poet-mystic.  He traveled extensively in search of stories concerning Sufi shaikhs and their sayings, and he spent many years in retreat and prayer in a mountain cave just north of Shiraz.  Of his works, a book on Ḥallāj (a Persian mystic) called Bedāyat ḥāl al-Ḥallāj wa nehāyatohu has survived.

The following excerpt from a poem by Kuhi describes his mystical experience:

I opened mine eyes and by the light of His face around me
In all the eye discovered – only God I saw.
Like a candle I was melting in His fire:
Amidst the flames outflanking – only God I saw.
Myself with mine own eyes I saw most clearly,
But when I looked with God’s eyes – only God I saw.
I passed away into nothingness, I vanished,
And lo, I was the All-living – only God I saw.

Quoted by F.C. Happold in Mysticism:  A Study and an Anthology.

Photo Credit: Baba Kuhi from

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