Extracts from Allama Iqbal’s poetry- Reflecting current scenario and a Message for us.


Naked faqr is the warmth of Badr and Hunain,
it is the sound of Husain’s takbir.
When faqr lost its zest for nakedness,
the Muslims lost their might (jalal).
Alas! for us and for this ancient world!
neither you nor I possess the sword of negation.
O young man, free your heart of the other‐than‐God,
and barter away this ancient world.
How long can you live careless of the plight of your faith?
O Muslim, this kind of life is as good as death.
The man of faith renews himself;
he does not look at himself except in the light of God;
he measures himself by the standard set by Mustafa,
and thus succeeds in creating a new world.
Woe to a nation that has fallen so low
that it gives birth to kings and lords but not to a single dervish.
Do not ask me to tell you its story, for how
can I describe what is indescribable?
Tears choke my throat;
it is better if this commotion remains within the heart.
The Muslim of this land has lost all hope in himself,
for a long time he has not seen a true man of God,
hence he has grown sceptical about the strength of his faith,
and has started waylaying his own caravan.
For three centuries the Ummah has been wretched and helpless,
it lives on without an inner (spiritual) fire and ecstasy.
Lowly in thought, mean of nature, vulgar in taste,
its teachers and religious preceptors are devoid of fervour;
its low thoughts have made it wretched,
and lack of unity has made it sick of itself.
As he (the Muslim) is not aware of his true station,
the zeal for revolution has died in his heart.
For lack of contact with a man of knowledge, he has become
feeble and dejected, and incapable of accepting truth.
He is a slave who has been rejected by his Lord,
who has grown poor, indigent and absolutely careless.
He has no wealth which may be snatched away by a king,
nor has he any (spiritual) light that may be taken away by a Satan.
His religious leader is a disciple of the Frankish lord,
though he boasts of the station of Bayazid.
He says: Bondage gives splendour to religion,
and life consists in being devoid of khudi.
He looked upon the enemy’s political control as a mercy;
danced in adoration round the Church and died.
O you who are devoid of spiritual zest and anguish,
do you know what this age of ours has done to us ?
This age has estranged us from ourselves
and cut us asunder from the beauty of Mustafa.
Since love for Mustafa departed from the breast,
the mirror lost its natural lustre.
You did not understand the real character of this age,
and have lost the wager in the very first move.
Since your mind got involved in its vortex,
no live desire appeared in your heart.
Subject yourself to examination and do not forget yourself;
be forgetful of the other‐than‐yourself for a while.
Why do you give in to fear, doubt and melancholy?
Realise your position in this country.
This garden (country) has many tall trees,
therefore do not make your nest on a low branch.
O man unaware of yourself you have a song in your throat,
recognise your true stock and do not fly with crows.
Give yourself the keenness of a sword,
and then hand yourself over to Destiny.
You have within you an irresistible storm,
before which a lofty mountain is but straw.
The grandeur of the storm lies in restlessness;
for it to rest for a moment is to die.
I am neither a theologian nor a jurist with an analytical mind,
nor am I acquainted with the intricacies of faqr.
For all my keen insight into the ways of faith, I am slow‐footed;
all my work is incomplete and what to me
appears mature is unripe,
but God has given me a heart full of living passion
and thus enabled me to unravel one knot out of a hundred.
“Take your share of my fire and ardour,
there may not come after me a fakir like me.”

3 thoughts on “Extracts from Allama Iqbal’s poetry- Reflecting current scenario and a Message for us.

  1. tariq jalal says:

    This site is great. All praise to you. May Allah bless you with knowledge and ‘ishq-e-rasool’. ameen.

    whose translation is this? it would be better if you can put the gif image of the urdu poetry text before or after the translation. Translations, esp of spiritual literature, is difficult unless the translator has the requisite command over language and is of equal or higher spiritual understanding/stature!


    tariq bhai

    • teamthevision says:

      Walekum Asalam

      This is the translated version from Dr.Iqbal Society of North America http://www.disna.us
      I have not included this original text because of the difficulty of reading and understanding
      Translation is quick and more meaningful

      Inshallah will add images of works of Iqbal Sahab next time


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