Discussion in 'Language Notes' started by Wadood, Jan 22, 2007.

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  1. Wadood

    Wadood Veteran

    It is everywhere Sidi. May be to a much higher degree in the SubContinent because of the culture there and the extreme sectarian situation among Muslims there in terms of lines of separation.

    Muslims in SubContinent have a different perception developed since the beginning of the Deoband School and the creation of Pakistan as well as the spread of rafiDism in Pakistan since 1947 especially in areas like Rawalpindi Division.

    Habashis do it too and so do the salafis of their scholars.

    The wahabi al-Qaeda fighters in Afghanistan are today "Awliya Allah" that hundreds of thousands of Sunni Afghans visit daily to get healed from, to ask help from.
  2. in urdu poetry which i adore u also get this. the poet wants to praise a girl's beauty. so he does it in such exaggerated terms that it is amazing! a good example of this is ahmad faraz's nazm 'sunaa hai log usse aankh bhar kay dekhte hain'. it is bizarre: when my brain is in the urdu mode of thinking i can accept it but when it is in the english mode and i look back at it it seems unreal. i chose to study this poem--in literal translation--[the language is sweet] with a group of my students from scandinavia last year. one girl said if someone wrote a poem like that to her she'd be really happy but most of them said, 'sir, i know i am not like that--nobody is so it wouldn't mean anything to me.' yet i reckon most eastern girls would swoon at that.

    a good friend of my father's was telling me [he is a mawlvi] about his student days which was really interesting but when he was talking about how good he was at dictation he used a phrase which was jarring and led to this whole thinking about hyperbole in our culture: yeh mujh pe khatam hai! meaning he was so good at it that he was the seal of those who take dictation!
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2007
  3. Is it just a Indo-Pakistani thing or is hyperbole and exaggerated praise a part of Muslim culture everywhere. I can understand it within the context of poetry or devotional literature but not when it is used in everyday situations: to me it sounds fake.

    The most common and cringe-worthy example is during the introduction of a speaker in a jalsa. The compere or host will announce his guest in such grandiose, exaggerated and overblown phrases that I'm sure the poor fellow must be embarassed--except when he is the host and the other person a guest he also does the same and at the beginning of his speech he will repay the exaggerated praises tenfold!

    Once a visiting maulvi came to give a speech at a local mosque.
    The imam of the mosque began listing his titles, 'ab mein dawat deta hoon, hazrat allama qibla mufti, khateeb e pakistan, fakhr e ahle sunnat....and so on for about a minute!"

    the other maulvi took to the stage and after hamd and sanaa and salawat said, 'main shukr guzaar hoon hazrat allama qibla hafiz al haaj khateeb e islam...' and so on!

    yet when for example shakyh nazim does a programme you never hear him being introduced with such lofty titles!

    and the followers of each shaykh fight over titles with followers of other shaykhs!
    Last edited: Jan 21, 2007

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