An urban peddler sells their wares on the street and what they carry in the bags for barter is all they deem holy and valuable in their lives.
Hafiz lives with such gifts of healing and wisdom and he no longer needs to compromise himself with trade. He has accepted himself as of the divine. To those who center their lives on making money to survive, Hafiz is an externalized authority and a celebrity. The Bag Lady is not bold enough to live a life of autonomy but wants to know where the master has tread to make slaves of monarchs. The peddling Bag Lady can create, buy, play and listen to all the music as it pours in from other heavenly dimensions but they cannot leave the habit of carrying the bag and let go to become the creator inside of it. So they idolize and worship Hafiz for his mastery instead.
The Bag Lady is those of us dealing in commerce and business as a priority - choosing that over our spiritual lives and supplanting our need to stand fully in the center of what we came into our lives to do. Many of us prefer to focus on someone else; wanting others to live our lives for us and use the money we earn for them to buy things to try and please ourselves. In this way we can live feeling safe and protected while working for the success of others.
Thank you for listening.
Music: Jackson Browne, The Pretender. This song is so deeply embedded into the soundtrack of people my age that it seems it seems sourced from a well spring beyond common time. This conundrum of how to balance a life of stability, success and spiritual creativity has been a major theme for civilization for a long time. Certainly for my generation, from whom this song was embraced as gold, it has asked the harder question. One that we struggle with today.
And believe in whatever may lie
The Gift: Poems by Hafiz and translated by Daniel Ladinsky can be purchased here.