Prose 97% vs Poetry 3%

Discussion in 'General Topics' started by Ibn Rida Safdar, Nov 15, 2021.

Draft saved Draft deleted
  1. Ibn Rida Safdar

    Ibn Rida Safdar New Member

    walaykum assalam. Seeing the list of suggested topics, I know this is out of my league. But, I will try to give an attempt inshaaAllah. I had probably come across the poster earlier but after going through the detailed brochure, I must say it's very refreshing to see a public initiative of such a high intellectual standard, as opposed to the usual research within the confines of our seminaries. May Allah aid you in your noble efforts.
  2. Ahmadh

    Ahmadh New Member

    When will we be able to read submissions? Will they be publicised?
  3. thelumahaward

    thelumahaward New Member

    as-Salamu alaikum dear brother,

    Some of the suggested topics for the Lumah Award commemorating the centenary of Alahazrat include:

    Inṣāf al-Imām
    ● Imām Aḥmad Riḍā Khān’s 10 Point Plan: 100 Years Later.
    ● Discuss Muftī Aḥmad Yār Khān Naʿīmī’s couplet “Ahl-e Sunnat behr-e Qawwālī-o ʿUrs…”
    ● Has justice been done to Imām Aḥmad Riḍā Khān and his legacy?

    We encourage you to submit an essay (deadline December 31, 2021). You can find out more in the brochure attached below.

    best regards,

    Admin of Lumah Awards

    Attached Files:

  4. Ibn Rida Safdar

    Ibn Rida Safdar New Member

    While I don't consider myself qualified to make any conclusive remark on the subject, I do have my biases and leanings. I view this from a consequential perspective, perhaps due to my own interest in the current state of the Muslim Ummah, about how either of the two choices will impact the community. In Economics, we have 'the Law of Diminishing Marginal Returns' stating that after some optimal level of capacity is reached, adding an additional factor of production will actually result in smaller increases in output ie. the marginal returns (benefit) that we reap out of our investment of resources (time, money etc.) in a specific activity will begin to decrease after a while to the point that it may turn negative upon over-spending.

    One could draw a parallel here that spending large sums on money in house decorations, financing events like Urs etc. may instead be better put to use for things like building madrasas etc. However, I am not sure if it's fair to use the above law used originating from a materialistic perspective to realms of spirituality and love.

    The reason why I brought this issue up is because I feel it's far more fundamental to the larger (of all forms) "Barelawi" community on several fronts and analyzing it may lead to answers on other important questions:

    1) If I am not wrong, Ml. Arshadul Qadri (or M. Faiz A. Owaisi?) made a statement how his books would have been appreciated (weighed in gold) if deobandis were on his side. Ml. Nayimuddin Moradabadi or someone else made a statement on how Deobandis spend on their madrasas and Barelawis instead spend on things like Urs. I could be wrong with the references / names.

    2) Shaykh Asrar recently made a comment on this forum about how some Barelwis tend to approach the Arab Scholars primarily from a perspective of Takfir issues. He alluded, if I am not misquoting him, that a better approach would be to instead focus on other areas of scholarship as well. He also commented on how he would rather spend his time in other constructive things that busy himself all the time with polemics (HY, TUQ etc.) on which he has made his position clear.

    I believe the above issues require a detailed analysis from someone who is understands intricacies of Shariah on issues like love and/or reason; Tawakkul and rational thinking; maslaha; maqasid etc. People often disagree on such issues because they disagree on first principles / priorities and a plausible solution would be address the fundamentals relating to the above. I don't hold a very strong bias towards either side rather am just eager to understand on what should be the guiding principles for a normal muslim to set priorities in his life.
    Noman Farooqui likes this.
  5. Ibn Rida Safdar

    Ibn Rida Safdar New Member

    If I have understood it right, the suggestion calls for spending relatively more time and resources on prose than on poetry (Naat). This caused me to remember a similar discussion that happened on issues of spending lavishly on Mawlid and Urs in comparison with spending on madrasas and fuqara. While the two issues are different, there are definitely some similarities:

    1) Some people feel that money spent on Lighting (decorations) /Naatkhawans can be better spend on spreading knowledge of the religion.

    2) Others make a counter argument (see reply by Shaykh Danyal).


    Some argue that it's not a matter of two mutually exclusive choices, rather both of them can be practiced without compromising on the other or making it a competition. There are some other arguments as well which may use stronger language to censure the opinion on pt. #1.

    Would be interested in what brothers here think about this
  6. Unbeknown

    Unbeknown Senior Moderator

    indeed poetry is a powerful medium and a few well-written lines can drill a concept home better than several paragraphs of prose - provided - it's explained properly to the uninitiated.

    Some scholars know how to do this properly so by alternating poetry with commentary they manage to explain several things without driving their audience to sleep.

    So ultimately it's a matter of skill - and perhaps art.
    Shahzaib likes this.
  7. Surati

    Surati Well-Known Member

    think that speeches need to be engaging, not only for adults, but for kids too. If they are maybe people won’t mind if there are not 100 naats being read.
    Last edited: Nov 12, 2021
  8. shahnawazgm

    shahnawazgm Veteran

    The awaam needs to realize that ilm always comes before naats. And when the two of these get embedded in an individual in insurmountable proportions then you get the likes of Ala Hazrat where the naat in itself becomes a lesson of ilm!
    Unbeknown likes this.
  9. Surati

    Surati Well-Known Member

    Excellent suggestion. I’d like to be optimistic and say it will happen but the future seems bleak.
  10. AbdalQadir

    AbdalQadir time to move along! will check pm's.

    The grand total # of pages in Fatawa Ridawiyyah - 22073

    The grand total # of pages in Hadayiq e Bakhshish - 446

    Between these 2 works of Ala Hazrat, both from the same publishing source. -

    Poetry = 2.02% --> let's round that to 3% and make it witr

    Prose = 97%

    Please don't go pedantic on me but as a very elementary, handwavy rule of thumb, it would be great if we can take a cue from the works of Ala Hazrat and organize Sunni efforts in this way

    Personal learning time and efforts as well as public events - focus on topics of knowledge, aqidah, fiqh, hadith, tafseer, seerah, aadaab and so on - 97%; focus on naats - 3%

    Time for knowledge based speeches by ulama at a 3 hr (180 min) event or a personal 3 hour study session - 174 minutes

    Time allocated for naatkhwans at an event or reading naats - 6 minutes (5.4 minutes rounded to 6)

    At events, if the time of naatkhwans is reduced, so will their compensation (and showering of money) be reduced.

    In my opinion, if we employ this model, we can stop the abuse and mockery of naatkhwani that has become rampant now in our culture.

    I do realize my suggestion might not see the light of day and can be laughed at by career-focused peers and naatkhwans, or even well-meaning brothers on here, but had to get it off my chest. I also realize that it takes a real stone-hearted person to be averse to poetry, but life is much more prose than poetry!

    To those who say that naatkhwani (poetry) is nothing other than praise of the Prophet salAllahu 3alaihi wa sallam and we shouldn't be against it (we're not, we're against abusing it and making it a profession), i say what is prose if not the deen that he brought, as well as mentioning his praise by his sahaba and the scholars? Isn't it our duty to learn and safeguard the deen that he (3alihis salam) taught us?

Share This Page