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#76 Ari Honarvar on A Girl Called Rumi, Pleasurable Activism, & Being a Mystic

Today, I’m looking forward to sharing with you our first podcast guest of the season, Ari Honarvar. Ari is full of treasures– a woman I sense you’re going to be seeing a lot more of in the months and years ahead. She’s a wonderful female role model for these times, in so many ways.

Ari Honarvar is an award-winning writer, visual artist, activist, and speaker who grew up in war-torn Iran. Today, she’s turned her childhood trauma into ecstatic service by bringing the medicine of Iranian mysticism and poetry to refugees and asylum seekers at the U.S./Mexico border. The Iranian Musical Ambassador of Peace, Ari has spearheaded the Drop Poems Not Bombs project and is also the Vice President of Gente Unida, a human rights border coalition.

We speak about what it was like to grow up as a young-girl in an unstable country where women and girls were stripped of their rights, what it was like to move to the United States without her family at the age of fourteen, and all the ways mystical poetry saved her life.

We also delve into the daily rituals she’s finding supportive for both herself and her family during the pandemic, as well as a deeper, more accurate understanding of the Narcissus myth, and how this can help us evolve past being such a transactional, individualistic culture.

Last, we talk about her process behind writing her first novel, the forthcoming “A Girl Called Rumi.”


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