Conference of the Birds

 

 

 

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The Conference of the Birds series is a deeply personal response to the Sufi fable of the same name, written by Farideddin Attar, 12th century Persian mystic. Attar's verse focuses on a flock of birds who, in time of chaos and darkness, decide they are in need of a King. Thus begins their quest for the Phoenix (Simorgh), and they embark upon an allegorical visit to seven valleys. After enduring increasing hardships, doubt and exhaustion set in and more and more birds give up the quest.

 

In a play on the Persian word Simorgh (Phoenix) they end their journey with Si-Morgh (thirty birds), in the end realizing that the Phoenix is nothing more than those birds themselves who persevered and endured the path through Self-sacrifice and steadfastness.