The acclaimed Persian poet and mystic, Sana'i Ghaznavi
Compiled By: Syed Ali Shahbaz
On 11th of the Islamic month of Sha’ban in 529 AH, the acclaimed Persian poet and mystic, Abu’l-Majd Majd od-Din ibn Adam Sana'i Ghaznavi, passed away in Ghazni in what is now Afghanistan at the age of 62. He was connected with the court of the Ghaznavid king, Bahram Shah, who ruled for 35 years.
When accompanying the king on a military campaign to India, Sana’i met the Sufi teacher Lai-Khur, and immediately quit Bahram Shah's service as a court poet, even though he was promised wealth and the hand of the king's daughter in marriage. He now started serving the people and criticized in his poems the unjust and corrupt rulers. He was a trend-setter in the style of Persian poetry.
His most important work is “Hadiqat-al-Haqiqah” (Walled Garden of Truth) which is in the form of odes, reflecting his ethical and Gnostic thoughts. Among his other works, one can mention “Ilahi Namah” and “Tariq at-Tahqiq”. He has written some excellent panegyrics in praise of Imam Ali ibn Abi Taleb (AS), the First Infallible Successor of Prophet Mohammad (SAWA). For the past nine centuries Sana'i has had a tremendous influence on Persian literature, and along with Shaikh Farid od-Din Attar, was regarded by Mowlana Jalal od-Din Rumi as an inspiration.