Poetry is a powerful weapon against oppression: Ayatollah Khamenei
Fighting an oppressor is not limited to fighting with weaponry. Today, world publicity has the upper hand, and the oppressors can be fought through instruments of expression and poetry.
Ahead of the commemoration period for Hazrat Fatima Zahra’s (as) martyrdom, a group of poets specializing in religious issues met with the Leader of the Revolution, Ayatollah Khamenei, on Thursday evening, February 23, 2017.
At this meeting, Ayatollah Khamenei stressed the importance of content in religious poems by stating: “Eulogies and panegyrics on the life and tragedies of the Imams (peace be upon them) are an important part of religious poetry; however, wise, logical words arising from a proper outlook and approach should be used. Substandard and superficial expressions as well as fabricated or delusional issues should be avoided.”
His Eminence described linking the events of early Islam with those of today as a crucial task to be carried out--through the poetry of religious centered poets. He added, "The holy Prophet and the infallible Imams (pbut) were fully dedicated towards fighting--strongly and effectively-- against oppression, tyranny, infidelity, hypocrisy and corruption; consequently, they were martyred at the hands of oppressive and unjust rulers. Fighting against global infidelity and hypocrisy is plausible and facilitated in the Islamic Republic, while in the wicked shadow of certain regional regimes, the slightest expression of opposition towards the United States can provoke their anger or severe reactions.”
Ayatollah Khamenei further stated, “Fighting an oppressor is not limited to fighting with weaponry. Today, world publicity has the upper hand, and the oppressors can be fought through instruments of expression and poetry; over the past few years, excellent and hope-giving examples have been produced in this regard.”
The Leader of the Revolution urged poets to address lifestyle issues as a duty. He said, "Today, in Europe and the U.S., there are centers and organizations with predetermined goals, targeting lifestyles in non-western countries, in particular, Islamic Iran."
His Eminence continued, "In the face of these overwhelming attacks, it is not enough to simply fight back by building a barrier around us. Rather, this duty can be fulfilled by elaborating on Islamic lifestyles, concepts and fundamentals of morality, politics and culture, through poetry.”
Ayatollah Khamenei expressed his contentment towards the progression of religious poetry and the numerical growth among poets, who are actively writing religious poems, by saying: “Good poetry is very influential and everlasting. Today, we need poets who are technically like Hafez, Sa’adi, and Saib Tabrizi: this can be achieved by means of practice, endeavor, and analysis; furthermore, by reading the poems of these great poets, and using lofty words in poetry.