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TAGS: Attar; Conference of the Birds (book); Haft Vadi (Seven Valleys); Interfaith dialogue; Mysticism; Sheila Banani; Sufism
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An overview of the similarities between the Seven Valleys by Bahá'u'lláh and the Conference of the Birds by the Persian Sufi Farid ud-din Attar.
Presented at the Irfan Colloquia Session #26, Bosch Bahá'í School, California (November 26-28, 1999).

Mirrored with permission from

Seven Valleys of Bahá'u'lláh and Farid ud-Din Attar

by Sheila Banani

published in Lights of Irfan, Book 1, pages 31-36
Wilmette, IL: Irfan Colloquia, 2000

This mystical work, written by Bahá’u’lláh in the late 1850's before his proclamation, follows his period of withdrawal and seclusion in the mountains of Kurdistan. The seven stages (valleys) is a traditional Eastern mystical concept used to delineate aspects of the spiritual path to God. Bahá’u’lláh's The Seven Valleys is an original work conveyed in the form of a commentary on existing mystical poetry. The metaphor of seven valleys is found in the famous late twelfth-century work of Farídu'd-Dín-i-'Attár called The Conference of the Birds. Comparisons will be made between the two works.
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