FrashavanIranians are great lovers of poetryMon May 28, 2012 06:06188.8.131.52Some of Khayyam's stuff -- his celebration of love and the vine, for example -- might raise the ire of more literally minded puritans, a group that Kasey has a good deal in common with!
But, as you point out, when looked at from a Sufi point of view, nearly all of it can be interpreted spiritually, too. It's a lot like the Song of Solomon... I used to watch Jimmy Swaggart's turgid show at which he gave his exegesis of the Jewish Bible in the hopes he would eventually get to the Song. I would have enjoyed watching him try to deal with that... of course, the series never made it that far! (He should have told people he was merely doing Biblical research with the hooker in that motel room. That would have been far more believable than his on-air "confession"!)
The question about the religious affiliation of the Iranian regime is a good one. Khomeini was not truly an Iranian (his family were from India), and his philosophy was influenced both by the Sufis and by Plato.
Khamenei is Azeri on his father's side. His status as marja (authority on Islamic law) and grand ayatollah is questioned, widely, even among Twelvers.
Interestingly enough, one of the ways Twelvers and Sunnis diverge is over the role of women -- in fact and practice, women have much greater influence in Iranian Islam (there have been significant female ayatollahs). This runs counter to Western propaganda, of course, which sees Wahhabism as normative Islam, even when critical of it in, for example, the hands of the Taliban.
- Perhaps ... Baruch, Mon May 28 05:01I have heard that Persians today are still readers of poetry, so I don't see any reason why. Ferdowsi, Khayyam and Hafez are some of the greats of Persian literature, and originally, Iranian Shiism,... more
- Iranians are great lovers of poetry Frashavan, Mon May 28 06:06