iqbal on nationalism (or is it?)

Discussion in 'Poetry' started by naqshbandijamaati, Aug 8, 2005.

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  1. abu Hasan

    abu Hasan Administrator

    dunya ke but-kadon mein pahla woh ghar khuda kaa
    hum paasban uske woh paasban hamara

    can be translated as:

    there were idol-houses in the world; but the first house to worship the One God was the ka'aba
    we are its protectors and she is our protector (ka'abah is fem. in arabic)

    the first line is very clever:

    kabah is the first house of worship on earth. hence, 'pahla woh ghar khuda ka' - the first House of Worship of God. "awwalu baytin.."

    dunya ke but kadon mein - among many houses of worship (with idols), stands the first House of God (without idols).
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 25, 2021
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  2. One of my fave. Iqbal nazm's.


    O Lord ! I have become weary of human assemblages!
    When the heart is sad no pleasure in assemblages can be

    I seek escape from tumult, my heart desires
    The silence which speech may ardently love!

    I vehemently desire silence, I strongly long that
    A small hut in the mountain's side may there be

    Freed from worry I may live in retirement
    Freed from the cares of the world I may be

    Birds' chirping may give the pleasure of the lyre
    In the spring's noise may the orchestra's melody be

    The flower bud bursting may give God's message to me
    Showing the whole world 1 to me this small wine-cup may be

    My arm may be my pillow, and the green grass my bed be
    Putting the congregation to shame my solitude's quality be

    The nightingale be so familiar with my face that
    Her little heart harboring no fear from me may be

    Avenues of green trees standing on both sides be
    The spring's clear water providing a beautiful picture be

    The view of the mountain range may be so beautiful
    To see it the waves of water again and again rising be

    The verdure may be asleep in the lap of the earth
    Water running through the bushes may glistening be

    Again and again the flowered boughs touching the water be
    As if some beauty looking at itself in mirror be

    When the sun apply myrtle to the evening's bride
    The tunic of every flower may pinkish golden be

    When night's travellers falter behind with fatigue
    Their only hope my broken earthenware lamp may be

    May the lightning lead them to my hut
    When clouds hovering over the whole sky be .

    The early dawn's cuckoo, that morning's mu’adhdhin2
    May my confidante he be, and may his confidante I be

    May I not be obligated to the temple or to the mosque
    May the hut’s hole alone herald of morning’s arrival be

    When the dew may come to perform the flowers’ ablution
    May wailing my supplication, weeping my ablution be

    In this silence may my heart’s wailing rise so high
    That for stars’ caravan the clarion’s call my wailing be

    May every compassionate heart weeping with me be
    Perhaps it may awaken those who may unconscious be

    (translation NOT by me)
  3. Gabriel and Satan

    My old friend,
    How is the world of sight and sound?

    Pain and passion; quest and yearning.

    Thou never talkest of anything but the heavens.
    Is there no cure for thy constant pain?

    Thou knowest not, alas, the secret of my pain!
    The loss I have suffered, has increased my passion more-,
    How silent is this world; desolate and wild!
    I cannot ever live here; I cannot!
    For one whose despair throbs in the heart of the universe,
    What is better-despair, or hope?

    By thy refusal thou hast lost thy place in heaven—
    And disgraced the angels in the eyes of the Lord.

    My courage gave a speck of dust the impulse to grow;
    My cunning is the fabric of man’s intellect.
    Thou watchest the war of good and evil, safely ashore,
    And who is battered by the storm-thou or I?
    Ask God, if thou hast the time to ask:
    Whose blood gave colour to Adam’s inglorious tale?
    I am a thorn in the Almighty’s mighty heart,
    And thou but mumblest His praise day and night.

    -Iqbal, Bal i Gibril (Jibril o Iblis). Translated by Naeem Siddiqui. From
  4. abu nibras

    abu nibras Staff Member


    i think "saare jahaan" was written much before this. Iqbal makes his latter viewpoint clear in another of his poems

    is daur meiN mai aur hai jaam aur hai jam aur
    sâqi ne binâ ki rawish-e-lutf o sitam aur
    tahzeeb ke âzar ne tarashwâye sanam aur
    muslim ne bhi tâmeer kiya apnâ haram aur
    in taaza khudâouN me baDâ sab se watan hai
    jo pairahan iskâ hai wo mazhab ka kafan hai
    nazzara-e-deyrina zamâney ko dikhâdey
    ai mustafawi khaak me is but ko milâ dey

  5. :s1:

    thanks for this. however his tarana e hindi is definitely nationalist and almost a national anthem right?

    saaray jahan se acccha hindustan hamara...

    same meter as tarana e milli (which was written later)

    lovely translation too!
  6. abu Hasan

    abu Hasan Administrator

    allama iqbal's poem:

    tarana e milli

    cheen o arab hamaraa hindostaaN hamaara
    muslim hain hum; watan hai saara jahaaN hamaara

    tawheed ki amaanat seenoN meiN hai hamaarey
    aasaaN naheeN miTaana naam o nishaaN hamaara

    dunyaN ke but-kadoN meiN pahlaa woh ghar khudaa kaa
    hum uskey paasbaaN haiN woh paasbaaN hamaara

    tayghon key saaye meiN hum, pal kar jawaaN huwey haiN
    khanjar hilaal kaa hai qawmi nishaaN hamaara

    maghrib ki waadiyoN meiN guunji azaaN hamaari
    thamata na thaa kisee se sayl rawaaN hamaara

    baatil se dabney waaley ay aasmaaN nahiN hum
    sau baar kar chukaa hai tu imtihaaN hamaara

    ay gulsitaan e andalus! woh din haiN yaad tujh ko
    thaa teri DaaliyoN par jab aashiyaaN hamaara

    ay mawjey dajlah! tu bhi pahchaanti hai hum ko
    ab tak hai tera daryaa afsaana khwaaN hamaara

    ay arz e paak! teri hurmat pey kaT marey hum
    hai khooN teri ragoN meiN ab tak rawaaN hamaara

    saalaar e kaarwaaN hai Mir e Hijaz apnaa
    is naam se hai baaqi aaraam e jaaN hamaara

    iqbal kaa taraana baang e daraa hai goyaa
    hotaa hai jaadah paymaa phir kaarwaaN hamaara

    china and arabia is ours, india is ours
    we are muslims and the whole world is our homeland

    the treasure of tawhid is in our hearts,
    it is not easy to wipe out our name and mark.

    the first house we have liberated from idols is the ka'abah;
    we are its custodians, and she is our protector

    we have grown up in the shadows of swords,
    our mascot is the crescent shaped dagger

    our prayer calls have reverberated in the valleys of the west,
    the force of our flow could not be stopped by anyone

    o the skies! we will not be subdued by falsehood,
    you have tried (our steadfasteness) a hundred times!

    o, the garden of andalusia! do you remember those days -
    when our abode was the nest on your branches?

    o, the waves of tigris! surely, you recognize us -
    your river tells our tales even to this day [*]

    o, the pure land! we have bled and died for your honor,
    our blood flows in your veins until now [**]

    the leader of our caravan, is the Prince of Hijaz [Sallallahu alayhi wa sallam]
    it is his name that keeps our heart in comfort and peace.

    iqbal's song is a clarion call
    for the caravan to rise and continue the journey once more

    * probably referring to the mongol incident when the invaders threw entire libraries into the river. it is said that its waters were colored by the ink for many days.

    ** either Haram ash-Sharif or Karbala

    Last edited: Jan 4, 2018

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