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I hold the Lion’s Paw

Whenever I dance.

I know the ecstasy of the falcon’s wings

When they make love against the sky,

And the sun and moon

Sometimes argue over

Who will tuck me in at night.

If you think I am having more fun

Than anyone on this planet

You are absolutely correct.

But Hafiz

Is willing to share all his secrets

About how to befriend God.

Indeed, dear ones,

Hafiz is so very willing

To share all his secrets

About how to know the



I hold the Lion’s Paw whenever I dance.

From The Gift-Poems by Hafiz the Great Sufi Master 

Translations by Daniel Ladinsky

My favorite poet, Hafiz.  His words speak directly to the connection to the divine and being at one in the universe.  This poem brings many thoughts to me and I smile with all of them.

To me Hafiz is talking about the dance of life.  When we put aside all of the thoughts in our head and we dance with the universe, with the voice of God then our life is filled with music.  We dance with the sun with the moon, with the wind.  We dance with the fiercest creatures and give them love.  “I hold the Lion’s Paw when I dance” is beautiful.  Hafiz is standing in the face of fear and dancing with love and compassion.   “If you think Hafiz is having more fun than anyone on this planet, then you are correct.”  I smile in this.  Hafiz is embracing life to the fullest nothing holds him back, he embraces the greatest fear with love, with a dance.

Wow….what would life be like if you took it fully on?  If you laughed in the face of your greatest fears.  If you lived fully, if you laughed, if you loved….if you danced in life.  Life would be beautiful.  It would not be a broken record of how hard life is, of how much suffering you go through.  In every moment you would dance without reservation, as if no one was watching.  Every moment you would be present and life would be full.

Nothing would stop you.  You would hold the Lion’s paw and dance with life.

Call to Action:

            • Where are you holding back on life?  Where are you timid and letting fear dictate your world?  Get present to these moments, this is not you, let go completely as if no one is watching.  Let go and dance.
            • Embrace the Lion’s paw….you know where your greatest fear lies, it aches in your side and speaks these words for you “I can’t.”  Find this place, get present to it and embrace it.  Dance with the Lion.  Begin living today.  Let in the world to the true you, not the you controlled by fear.
            • Dance…..life is a dance filled with beautiful music.  Dance with it.
            • Be LOVE.

Thomas D. Craig

Author A Cup of Buddha


*Photo credit:  Nixie:  http://nixie04.deviantart.com/