Abu-Sa’id Abu’l Kheyr is revered as one of the fathers of Sufism and the Rubaiyat. His philosophy of self annihilation in the path of divine love became popularized by Rumi two centuries later.
His understanding of Islam was different—nearness and understanding of God is achieved through selflessness and love. The “I” was to be abandoned if closeness to God was to be achieved.
Abu Said was born in North Eastern Persia a thousand years ago. He was educated in Islamic scholarship and lived and practiced as a Muslim cleric. At a certain point he developed a revolutionary new understanding of being and presented it in the form of poetry. He used, what seems, simple love poems as a way to express and illuminate mysticism. His philosophy was sustained and propagated in a Sufi center he founded in Nishapur.
What I know, he sees.
Abu Said is both the founder and master of the Rubaiyat … He was not only the first to put down the sum of his poetic ability in this form, but also—more importantly—was the first to lend compact, concise and absorbing expression to the manifold radiations of mystical doctrine. He was followed later by so many others with brilliant success—Omar Khayyam, Afzal Khashi, Feyzi and others.
Reza Ordoubadian, who has given a new life to Abu Sa’id, is also the author of the popular The Poems of Hafez.