Sunday, November 10, 2013

Allama Iqbal - My Inspiration

Written By:  Hira Nazir (Click here for the original post)

There are many names written in golden words on the pages of history, spoken with an air of inevitable gratitude and remembered fondly. But indeed, one name that outclassed others with utmost consideration is Allama Muhammad Iqbal. Iqbal was not only a great poet, by virtue of his being a great poet, but a great artist, an exceptional philosopher, a dependable leader and sincere scholar whose literary work always reflected purity and honesty. His poetry is a blend of philosophy and emotions with all the arts demonstrating natural beauty. Just like a single color of many shades, a single face of many expressions and a single soul of many emotions.

Iqbal, the poet of all time presents his world beautifully and elegantly. His words flow with rhythm, his expressions come out with vitality and his views superimpose all that he has in his world. The world created by Iqbal is not an imitation in any sense of the real world we live in, but an improvement on it, presented so purposely that the reader will wish to imitate that improvement. This aspect of Iqbal’s poetry is also due to his perception of the beautiful in nature and art. Iqbal’s poetry is indeed “The Universal Collection.” One can see many shades of Iqbal’s poetry. From a true patriot who always tried to justify his passionate thoughts via his words to the sincere and honest leader whose main motto is arousal of enthusiastic zeal in his nation. From a devoted ”Ashiq-e-Rasool (S.A.W.W)” to a learned scholar, from being an ordinary soul to an intricate philosopher, from the worldly love bits to the piousness of virtues and faith, Iqbal covers every single aspect in his poetry.

“Bang-e-Dara”, “Zarb-e-Kaleem”, “Baal-e-Jibril” and “Armghan-e-Hijaz”, are few of the wonders to Iqbal’s credit. One noticeable element of Iqbal’s poetry is power. His views are so strong and powerful that the words fortify them. In addition to that, his imaginations and views are so natural that the words dotted in thoughts when jotted together, seems to dance in the flow of lyrical chant. Iqbal’s poetic skills are versatile. The actual spark of his poetry lies in the daintiest use of metaphor, myth, simile, metaphysical approach and unique imagery. Iqbal is adept at using different metaphors. He so profoundly relates different things via metaphors, which the reader feels like being among those numb things echoing and speaking in day-to-day life. Shaheen-the bird and philosophy of “Khudi” are two distinctive features of Iqbal’s poetry that separates him from the line of other ordinary ones. Iqbal has talked of ”Khudi” as a nascent bridge for connection between a soul and his Lord. At many places he has asked the readers to connect their faiths and beliefs via the force of Khudi. 

He says:

Tu Raaz-e-Kun Fakan hai, apni ankhon par ayaan hoja

Khudi ka Raazdan hoja, khuda ka tarjuman hoja

Khudi mein doob ja ghafil yeh sirr-e-zindagani hai

Nikal har halqa-e-shaam o sehar mein beiqaran hoja

Strength, dedication, selflessness, devotion, patriotism, struggle and art these are the prominent aspects among many eye catchers for a reader in “Kuliyaat-e-Iqbal”. Masjid-i-Qurtuba, an embodiment of beauty and grace, flows into the eye and ear and a reader or a listener of this masterpiece in Urdu literature invites a taste for beauty and decency. Iqbal has beautified it via the charm of his words and crunch of his thoughts. It is yet another important feature for a reader in Iqbal’s poetry. He has adorned this masterwork of art with the shimmering dust of his great views. The poem written on it,Masjid-i-Qurtuba is considered as the greatest piece of poetry, which deals with that gist of Time, the difference between pure duration and serial time, mortality of the world, permanence of a piece of art, love with its roll in which Masjid-i-Qurtuba is based, nobility of the mosque, heritage and stories of Islamic creativity, emergence of reformation, French Revolution, renaissance and confidence in- life, these are those exalted features which a reader’s eye can catch while going through this gathering of verses. Indeed, Iqbal has covered almost every aspect in it that clearly depicts his strong grip over the pen and command of his skills. He has mentioned the spark emotions and feelings too, saying:

Millat-i-Roomi nayad kuhna parasti se peer,

Lazzat-i-tajdeed se woh bhi bui phir jawan

Ruh-i-musalman men hai aaj wuhi iztirab

Raz-i-Khudai hai yeh, keh naheen sakti zaban

Dekhyey is behr ki teh se uchhalta hai kya

Gunbad-i-neelupari rang badalta hai kya

“Talu-e-Islam”, a poem considered as a masterpiece in the history of literature has been embraced and created by Iqbal, the poet of a whole decade. Motivation, khudi, faith, beliefs, very perfectly blended with the delightful words, and Talu-e-Islam originated. In its verses one could see, the face of a zealous patriot, a glimpse of the devoted scholar and presence of Islamic history coalesced with the feelings and emotions thrived and felt if traced back.

Here is couplet from this poem in which he says:

Ai haram-i-Qurtuba ishq se tera wujood

Ishq sarapa dawan jis men naheen raft-o-bood,

Rang ho ya khisht-o-sang chang ho ya harf o-saut

Mojza-i-fan ki hai khoon-i jigar se namood

Qatra-i-khoon-i jigar sil ko banata hai dil

Khun-i jigar se sada soz-o-suroor-o-sarood

Teri faza dilfaroz, meri nawa seena soz

Tujh se delon ka hazoor, mujh se dilon ki kushood

Arsh-i-mualla se barn seena-i-Aadam naheen

Garchi kaf e-khak ki had hai sipihr-e-kubooc

Tera jalal-o jamal mard-i-khuda ki daleel

Woh bhi jaleel-o jameel too bhi jaleel-o jameel

A new poem, a fresh piece, innovative thought, unique picture. This is all Iqbal’s poetry is about. It is only he who has given innovative creativity and new aspects for pondering over in each of his piece. To be remembered fondly is his most delighting creation, “Shikwa Jawab-e-Shikwa”, a literary work of every time for everyone. The beautiful mixture of interrogative and declarative pattern followed in this poem has no parallel in the history of literature. It has all in itself. Emotions, feelings, bewilderedness, piety, sinfulness, metaphors, epitome, there isn’t any aspect uncovered in this magnum opus. One feels like flowing in its rhythm, moving in its tone and lost in its imagery. It is one of its kind and an example for all, for it won’t get any other literary piece to beat its standards. He has awakened many dead souls by the magic of his verses in this poem, a piece which would be remembered for ages. We’ve hearts but dead, eyes but not wet and feelings with no warmth, this is only the power of Iqbal’s words that blew some breathe in the dead and mislaid nation of his time. As he mentioned in it:

Ummaten aur bhi hain un men gunahgaar bhi hain

Ijz waley bhi hain mast-i ma-e pindar bhi hain

Inmey kahil bhi hain ghafil bhi hain hushyar bhi hain

Saikron hain ke tirey naam se bezaar bhi hain

Rahmaten hain teri aghyar ke kashanon par

Barq girti hai to becharey musalmanon par

Iqbal was the man, who of all the greatest poets had the most comprehensive soul. He has described everything in his lyrical words. Every aspect of life seems to be highlighted. He doesn’t only describe through words but also feels them, realize the true emotions and then sketch them via words. The way he sense his words is directly passed to the reader due to their purity. Masjid-e-Qurtuba, though being a statue, is explained in such an exceptional way by him that the reader sees it in imagination, feel its incredibility and sense its actuality. It is indeed standard of a great poet like Iqbal who can do such wonders. List of the miracles done by his words follow no end. He was the soul that felt things around, sensed them in true words and captured the spark of every second. He jotted every moment in letters. The dust of his creativity sparkled on pages and miracles resulted. His poetry is a perfect blend of emotions, feelings, inspiration and enduringness. His words were the only ray of hope for the nation living in misery in his time. His views are simply actuating hopes for the youth. He won hearts, won souls, won lives. He won the word via the charm of his words. His poetry won him every nation of every time, every person of every class. No matter young or old, every single being has something for himself in his collection. His words are still the only spark of a promising future for a dangling nation like we are. He did wonders in literature. His poetry keeps no parallel. It has covered every aspect, every desire, every feeling, from ordinary to extraordinary. Indeed, Iqbal’s name comes among the top in the history of literature, a person who initiated a new style of writing, a new trend of expressing and a new pattern of blowing people’s lives via the fortified words.

Sabaq Phir Parh Sadaqat Ka, Adalat Ka, Shujaat Ka

Liya Jaye Ga Tujh Se Kaam Dunya Ki Imamat Ka

Yehi Maqsood-E-Fitrat Hai, Yehi Ramz-E-Muslamani

Akhuwat Ki Jahangeeri, Mohabat Ki Farawani


  1. wow very nice column i am really impressed i often used to study Iqbal's Poetry i think you have better understanding of his poetry so i decided to take a little help from you. Few days ago i read "Talu-e-Islam" a poem of Iqbal (starting lines are " Daleel subh-e-roshan hai sitarun ki tunak tabi" i heard from some one that iqbal write this poem after inspiration fro turky's inqilab but i don't think so so if you know any back ground about that kindly help me out

  2. Good article. We need to spread message of Iqbal to awaken our people.