Tuesday, 2 September 2008

Arguing with God: The Sheikh will get Heaven and I will get Hell?

I have translated a few verses from another of Aziz Mian's wonderful Qawallis. This is my favorite verse in which he shows the tension between the 'puritans' (used as a metaphor in term 'Sheikh') and the seekers of the Beloved (God). Beautiful!

maza aja’ay ga me’shur mein kuch sunanay sunanay ka
zaban to meri ho gi me’shur mein, aur kahani aap ki ho gi

It will be most enjoyable to listen and to say on that great day of judgement
It will surely be my tongue but the story will be yours

yeh kaisa dastoor hai dababundi hai ya rabb teri mehfil mein
Key ankh ko baat kurnay ko tarasti hai zaban meri

What kind of tradition is this, locked in duties, in your intimate gathering
That my eye is longing to say something with my tongue

woh dunya thi jaha bund kurtay tay zaban meri
yeh me’shur hai yaha sun’ni puray gi dastan meri

That was the earthly world where you used to silence my tongue
This is the day of judgement, you will have to listen to my story now

milay gi sheikh ko jannat, mujhay doosakata ho ga?
bus itni baat ki katur tera meshur bapa ho ga?

The sheikh will get heaven, I will be doomed?
For just this case, your court will be instated?

hum itna jantay hai, hashr kay din humsay kya ho ga
sub usko dekhtay ho gay, who hum ko dekhta ho ga

All I know is that on that great day, what I will be doing
Everyone will be looking at Him (God), He (God) will be looking at me

jahannum ho ya jannat, jo bhi ho ga faisla ho ga
yeh kya dum hai kay mera aur unka samna ho ga

Hell or Heaven, whatever there is! the final judgement will be given
The hope is in the fact that I will be faced with Him

rahay do do farishtay sath, to insaaf kya ho ga?
Kisi nay kuch likha ho ga, kisi nay kuch lika ho gay

Two two angels on each side, what kind of judgement will take place?
Someone will have written something and the other something else!

(In Muslim theology there is an understanding that there are two angels on the shoulders of every believer. One writes the good deeds and the other bad, these will be presented to God on the great day of judgement. I think the use of the term 'two two angels' is another play on words which is saying that one angel writing good is on the shoulder and the other 'good angel' are the puritans/sheikhs who constantly tell Muslims that they are right/wrong/good/bad on issues. So, in a sense mocking the earthly 'angels'.)

1 comment:

  1. Another interesting commentary :-)

    Nothing can be more intrusive than the presence and judgment of others between you and your beloved. Is it a wonder then than one looks to the doomsday with anticipation as it would give you the ultimate closeness with your beloved, without anyone else trying to act as go-betweeners? Then atlast you would be able to see and hear what goes on just between you and your beloved :-)