General Zia’s Wahhabi legacy in Pakistan:
In identifying General Zia-ul-Haq’s great dis-service to Islam and Pakistan, Green Sufi writes: “It is hard to say the General’s rule was a bed of roses for Islam. Some steps he took could only be characterized as misguided at best.
For instance, the General’s involvement with and promotion of Salafi Jihadis, for the 2-pronged purpose of the Afghan Jihad and countering Irani influence, was a terrible move.
These extremists prospered in the country, and also succeeded in converting half of Deoband into jettisoning their traditional Sunni Islam for half-way Salafism. Today, many people think Salafism is identical with Deoband, they have no idea about the Sufi beliefs of Mawlana Ashraf Ali Thanvi RA etc.
Further the rabidly anti-Shia nature of some of the Salafis had a terrible dividing influence in the country. For the General this was perhaps expedient, as for his US and Saudi backers- this served the triple purpose of finding fanatically committed soldiers for the Afghan Jihad, countering the growing influence of Islamic Revolutionary Iran- which both the US & the Saudis feared- and the growing anti-Shia fanaticism of the Salafis spilling into the public sphere was perhaps seen as countering the threat of the Shia Bhuttos, Zia’s main rivals.
In retrospect then, Gen. Zia’s legacy was mixed: even for religion, he sowed the seeds of discord and the horrid religious violence that continues to our day.”
Sufis protest in Peshawar against the Wahhabi/Taliban attack on the Rahman Baba’s shrine:
|رحمان بابا کا مزار ایک عالیشان اور خوبصورت عمارت پر مشتمل ہے|
سنیچر کی شام سول سوسائٹی اور قوم پرست جماعتوں کی مختلف تنظمیوں نے رحمان بابا کے مزار کا دورہ کیا اور عقیدت کے طورپر مزار پر شمعیں روشن کیں اور پھولوں کی چادریں چڑھائیں۔
رحمان بابا کا مزار ایک عالیشان اور خوبصورت عمارت پر مشتمل ہے جس میں بابا کا مقبرہ، مسجد اور لائبریری شامل ہے اور یہ تینوں عمارتیں تھوڑے ہی فاصلے پر قریب قریب واقع ہیں۔ مقبرے کی عمارت پر ایک بڑا گنبد ہے جسے وہاں دربار کے نام سے یاد کیا جاتا ہے۔ یہ گنبد اتنا اونچا ہے کہ دور سے ہی نظر آجاتا ہے۔
ہزارخوانی کے علاقے میں قائم اس مزار کو چار دن قبل نامعلوم افراد نے چار اطراف سے دھماکہ خیز مواد سے نشانہ بنایا تھا جس سے تمام عمارت میں سوراخ اور دراڑیں پڑگئی ہیں۔ مقبرے کی عمارت کو پہنچنے والے نقصان کا اندازہ اس بات سے لگایا جاتا ہے کہ اسے دور سے ہی دیکھ کر محسوس ہوتا ہے کہ جیسے عمارت ابھی گرنے والی ہے۔
|مزار کی عمارت میں بابا کا مقبرہ، مسجد اور لائبریری شامل ہے|
مزار پر ہر طرف رحمان بابا کے مرید اورعقیدت مند غمزدہ اور نوح کناں نظر آتے ہیں۔ جب سے مزار پر حملہ ہوا ہے تو اس کے بعد سے روزانہ رحمان بابا کے مزار پر ان کے عقیدمندوں کا تناتا بندھا ہوا ہے۔ یہ عقیدت مندجلوسوں کی شکل میں پہنچ کر دربار میں شمعیں روشن کرتے ہیں اور پھولوں کی چادر چڑھا کر اپنے غم کا اظہار کررہے ہیں۔
مزار پر موجود رحمان بابا کے ایک مرید فاروق نے بتایا کہ وہ گزشتہ بیس سال سے مزار پر صفائی کا کام کرتے ہیں۔ انہوں نے کہ کہا کہ جس دن سے باباجی کے مزار کو نشانہ بنایا گیا ہے تو مزار پر کام کرنے والے تمام مرید اور ملنگ شدید صدمے سے دوچار ہیں۔ انہوں نے کہا کہ ’ تین دن سے مزار میں کوئی لنگر نہیں ہوا ہے، مزار کی عمارت کو دیکھتے ہیں ہم سب کی بھوک مٹ جاتی ہے‘۔
انہوں نے غصے سے بھرپور لہجے میں کہا کہ ’ یہ کام بے دین لوگوں کی سازش ہے جو کسی مزہب اور دین کے پیروکار نہیں ہوسکتے۔ جو لوگ مزاروں اور مسجدوں کو نشانہ بناتے ہیں وہ مسلمان نہیں ہوسکتے‘۔
مزار پر صفائی کاکام کرنے والے درجنوں رضاکار ہاتھوں میں مشل لیے جلوس کی شکل میں مزار پہنچے۔ یہ رضاکار ’امن اور انسانیت کے دشمن مردہ باد مردہ باد‘ کے نعرے لگارہے تھے۔ ان میں کچھ افراد نے سعودی شیوخ کے خلاف بھی نعرہ بازی کی۔
|مزار پر حملے کے بعد سے رحمان بابا ان کے عقیدمندوں کا تناتا بندھا ہوا ہے|
اس سے قبل قوم پرست جماعت نیشنل پارٹی کے صوبائی صدر سید مختار باچا کی قیادت میں بھی ایک جلوس مزار پہنچا اور مقبرے پر شمعیں روشن کیں۔
اس موقع پر میڈیا سے بات کرتے ہوئے سید مختار باچا نے الزام لگایا کہ پشتونوں کے علاقوں میں وھابی ازم کا ایک نیا دور شروع ہوا ہے جو ان کے مطابق امریکہ اپنے ساتھ لایا ہے۔ انہوں نے کہا کہ رحمان بابا تو امن کے داعی تھے اور ان کے مزار پر حملہ پشتونوں کی بے عزتی ہے جس کی جتنی بھی مزمت کی جائے کم ہے۔
مزار کے منتظمین کے مطابق چند دن قبل انہیں ایک دھمکی آمیز خط ملا تھا جس میں کہا گیا تھا کہ مزار میں منشیات کے عادی افراد آتے ہیں اور یہاں پر تعویز گنڈوں کا کاروبار ہوتا ہے۔
اگرچہ کسی تنظیم نے تاحال اس حملے کی ذمہ داری قبول نہیں کی ہے لیکن حکومت کی طرف سے ان مسلح گروہوں پر الزام لگایا جارہا ہے جو گزشتہ کچھ عرصہ سے صوبہ سرحد اور قبائلی علاقوں میں واقع مزاروں اور ان کے منتظمین پر حملوں میں ملوث رہے ہیں۔ پشاور اور اطراف کے علاقوں میں اب تک اس قسم کے واقعات میں کئی پیروں اور ان کے مریدوں کو قتل کیا جاچکا ہے۔
Wahhabi radicals are determined to destroy a gentler, kinder Islam
Rahman Baba, “the Nightingale of Peshawar,” was an 18th-century poet and mystic, a sort of North West Frontier version of Julian of Norwich.
He withdrew from the world and promised his followers that if they also loosened their ties with the world, they could purge their souls of worries and move towards direct experience of God. Rituals and fasting were for the pious, said the saint. What was important was to understand that divinity can best be reached through the gateway of the human heart – that we all have paradise within us, if we know where to look.
For centuries, Rahman Baba’s shrine at the foot of the Khyber Pass has been a place where musicians and poets have gathered, and his Sufi verses in the Pukhtun language made him the national poet of the Pathans. As a young journalist covering the Soviet-mujahideen conflict I used to visit the shrine to watch Afghan refugee musicians sing their songs to their saint by the light of the moon.
Then, about 10 years ago, a Saudi-funded Wahhabi madrasa was built at the end of the track leading to the shrine. Soon its students took it on themselves to halt what they saw as unIslamic practices. On my last visit, I talked about the situation with the shrine keeper, Tila Mohammed. He described how young Islamists now came and complained that his shrine was a centre of idolatry and superstition: “My family have been singing here for generations,” said Tila. “But now these Arab madrasa students come here and create trouble.
“They tell us that what we do is wrong. They ask people who are singing to stop. Sometimes arguments break out – even fist fights. This used to be a place where people came to get peace of mind. Now when they come here they just encounter more problems, so gradually have stopped coming.”
“Before the Afghan war, there was nothing like this. But then the Saudis came, with their propaganda, to stop us visiting the saints, and to stop us preaching ‘ishq [love]. Now this trouble happens more and more frequently.”
Behind the violence lies a long theological conflict that has divided the Islamic world for centuries. Rahman Baba believed passionately in the importance of music, poetry and dancing as a path for reaching God, as a way of opening the gates of Paradise. But this use of poetry and music in ritual is one of the many aspects of Sufi practice that has attracted the wrath of modern Islamists. For although there is nothing in the Qur’an that bans music, Islamic tradition has always associated music with dancing girls and immorality, and there is a long tradition of clerical opposition.
At Attock, not far from the shrine of Rahman Baba, stands the Haqqania, one of the most radical madrasas in South Asia. Much of the Taliban leadership, including its leader, Mullah Omar, were trained here, so I asked the madrasa’s director, Maulana Sami ul-Haq, about what I had heard at Rahman Baba’s tomb. The matter was quite simple.” Music is against Islam,” he said. “Musical instruments lead men astray and are sinful. They are forbidden, and these musicians are wrongdoers.”
Nor were Sami’s strictures limited to the shrine’s music: “We don’t like tomb worship,” he continued. “We do not pray to dead men, even the saints. We believe there is no power but God. I invite people who come here to return to the true path of the Qur’an. Do not pray to a corpse: Rahman Baba is dead. Go to the mosque, not to a grave.”
This sort of madrasa-driven change in attitudes is being reproduced across Pakistan. There are now 27 times as many madrasas in the country as there were in 1947: from 245 at independence, the number has shot up to 6870 in 2001. Across Pakistan, the religious tenor has been correspondingly radicalised: the tolerant, Sufi-minded Barelvi form of Islam is now out of fashion in northern Pakistan, especially in the NWFP, overtaken by the rise of the more hardline and politicised Wahhabism.
Later, I returned to the shrine and found Tila Mahommed tending the grave. Making sure no one was listening, he whispered: “We pray that right will overpower wrong, that good will overcome evil. But our way is pacifist,” he said.” As Baba put it,
I am a lover, and I deal in love. Sow flowers,
So your surroundings become a garden
Don’t sow thorns; for they will prick your feet.
We are all one body,
Whoever tortures another, wounds himself.
I thought of this conversation, when I heard that the shrine of Rahman Baba had finally been blown up on Thursday, a few hours after the Sri Lankan cricketers were ambushed in Lahore. The rise of Islamic radicalism is often presented in starkly political terms, but what happened in Peshawar this week is a reminder that, at the heart of the current conflict, lie two very different understandings of Islam. Wahhabi fundamentalism has advanced so quickly in Pakistan partly because the Saudis have financed the building of so many madrasas, which have filled the vacuum left by the collapse of state education. These have taught an entire generation to abhor the gentle, syncretic Sufi Islam that has dominated south Asia for centuries, and to embrace instead an imported form of Saudi Wahhabism.
Sufism is an entirely indigenous Islamic resistance movement to fundamentalism, with its deep roots in South Asian soil. The Pakistani government could finance schools that taught Pakistanis to respect their own religious traditions, rather than buying fleets of American F-16 fighters and handing over education to the Saudis. Instead, every day, it increasingly resembles a tragic clone of Taliban Afghanistan.
• William Dalrymple ‘s Last Mughal won the Duff Cooper Prize and the Crossword Indian Book of the Year prize.
A specimen of the Wahhabi justification for the destruction of Rahman Baba’s tomb: Taken from a Wahhabi (potentially Al Qaeda/Taliban?) blog:
jazakhallahu kahir bro AbuMarwan, here is the picture
Local residents gather at the damaged shrine of 17th century Sufi poet Rehman Baba in Peshawar, Pakistan, on Thursday
Very happy to see Deobandis becoming Wahabis, this going to be a great shock to our soofi moulana NOORUDDEEN
lets hope they keep up the good work inshallah
Ulema Deoband actually consider this practice to be evil. A couple of weeks ago we had one deobandi scholar giving a khutba where he deemed tawassul, istgatha ect to be shirk and he said that its an obligation on muslims to destroy these places of shirk as he called it.
Aboo Ayaat Al Hindee said:
And of mankind are some who take (for worship) others besides Allah as rivals (to Allah). They love them as they love Allah. But those who believe, love Allah more (than anything else). If only, those who do wrong could see, when they will see the torment, that all power belongs to Allah and that Allah is Severe in punishment. (Surah Al-Baqarah:165)
Abu Najm Muhammad said:
These grave-worshipping sufees are the real extremists…
Abu Shu’aib said:
ma Sha Allah – the Sunnah of Ibrahim
I think there should be a mass propaganda against this shirk instead of actually bombing them, because of the current situation in Pakistan right now.
Abu Maryam PK said
oh, but why cudnt the sufi saint save his own tomb? Must be busy with other things
Logic Lover said:
Did Ibrahim as commissioned a ‘mass propaganda’ before breaking the idols?
By the way, the word ‘propaganda’ has a negative connotation. The word ‘Dawah’ should be used instead. However, why dawah and smashing could not be conducted at the same time?
Abu Abdallah Al-Balghari said:
Should have used 10 fold more explosives
Quburiyyah has nothing to do with Tasawwuf, why do people always associate the two?
abu hafs said:
Fact: Majority of Quburis claim to be sufis.
Fact: Majority of Sufis are Quburis.
Haaji Abu Bakr said:
the should deal with the shrine when they have authority right? it seems that if they had authority and then disassembled the shrine they would have more support of the locals.
Yeah, it’s hardly been destroyed as such. That could be rebuilt within a month probably.
Can’t always measure the validity of an action based on acceptance of other people. That’s where the term Ghurabaa becomes relevant.
Saif ur Rahman Al Afghany said:
“Firstly, building Masajid on graves is Haram, as it is authentically established that the Prophet (peace be upon him) prohibited this and cursed those who do so. If they are built, the Muslim rulers should demolish them as a form of preventing evil, for they were not founded on Taqwa.
Likewise, if a group of Muslims has the ability, they themselves should tear it down, provided that this will not cause any Fitnah, which cannot be overcome. In his call for Tawhid, the Prophet did not destroy the idols which were at the Ka’bah and those inside it at first. However, when the Muslims became more powerful, he demolished them on the year of Conquest of Makkah.
Secondly, if they are demolished, it is permissible for you to take parts that you can make use of, as long as there is no fear of Fitnah or harm.
May Allaah grant us success! Peace and Blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family and Companions”.
Permanent Committee for Scholarly Research and Ifta’
Shaykh Abdul Azeez Ibn Baaz
Shaykh Abdullah Ibn Ghudayan
Shaykh Abdul Razaaq Afify
Shaykh Abdullaah Ibn Qa’ud
Saif al Rahman Al Afghany said:
There are so many of these shrines throughout the muslim world. I heard that some people even go there for sex, drugs and other fawaahish – wal’iyaadubillaah.
When Talibaan mujahideen came to Afghanistan, they did not destroy these shrines. They prohibited people from entering the shrines, except once a week orso AND then they entered under full supervision of the Talibaan. They wrote on some famous graves:
“If anyone worships this grave, his head will be chopped off”.
Wa Allaahu A’alam,
Aboo ayat al hindee said:
yes sunni ‘muslims’ are praying to them as well. sunni is only a label meaning ‘not shia’ it is meaningless because many sunnis share the same beliefs and practices of the shia such as saint worship and many of them may even be secularists.
if one is asking the dead to make dua on their behalf believing they can hear them while being at their grave this is an innovated method of worship which means it is haram and no doubt these are from among the beginning stages of shirk. i am not sure if you can say that this individual has left the deen by committing an act of shirk but many of these people actually do pray to the saint to fulfill their needs and slaughter in their name and they are not just asking him to ask allah for them.
Abu Usama said:
As Salamu Alaikum Warahmathullah
with due respect i dont agree with you bro, how many years more they should be waiting till the laymen understand ? if this is what, Sheikh Muhammed ibn Abdul Wahab (rahimullah) would have thought i think we would be witnessing grave worshping in Madeena and Makka to this date so in my opinion if they (taliban) have the power then they should not wait another second without destroying those idols. We know Prophet (PBUH) was sent to destroy the shirk right so why the Muwahidoon should wait anymore ? did not Prophet (PBUH) dispetced Ali (Ral) to level all the graves in his (PBUH) last days ? did not he (PBUH) asked the Shaba (ral) to witness that the Islam was completed ? So how long we should wait ?
After all, Allah knows best
May Allah (swt) reward the people who destroyed those Idols
Aakar Patel: Let’s sing Iqbal’s Tarana-e-Hind-o-Pak to fight religous extremism in our society. Indo-Persian sufi heritage versus Taliban’s sharia.
Why did the Taliban attack the tomb of Rahman Baba?
Short answer: The Taliban belong to a puritanical version of Islam. There is not a single Brelvi, Sufi or Shia in the Taliban. Most of the Taliban belong to either Deobandi or Salafi/Wahhabi ideology of Islam. They treat Sufis, Pirs, Saints and the followers of Sufis as heretics (non-Muslims).
In the past, Taliban or their forefathers have destroyed the mausoleums of Ahl-e-Bait and Sahaba Karam in Jannat Al-Baqi in Madinah, Imam Al Naqi and Imam Hassan Askari in Samarra, and numerous similar attacks on other shrines and mausoleums in Saudi Arabia, Iraq and Pakistan.
Pashtun poet’s mausoleum bombed in Pakistan
Thu Mar 5, 2009 3:25
PESHAWAR, Pakistan, March 5 (Reuters) – Suspected Islamist militants in Pakistan blew up on Thursday the mausoleum of a 17th century poet revered in both Pakistan and Afghanistan, apparently because women visited the shrine.
The ethnic Pashtun poet, Abdul Rehman, is commonly known as Rehman Baba, and is loved by Pashtuns for his mystical verse.
People regularly go to his white, marble mausoleum on the outskirts of the northwestern city of Peshawar to pay their respects but no one was hurt in the pre-dawn blast.
“The structure of the shrine has been badly damaged but there were no casualties,” said police officer Zar Noor.
Militants had warned people to stop women visiting the shrine, a resident told DawnNews television.
Militants have been stepping up attacks in Pakistan in recent years, especially in the Pashtun-dominated northwest.
As well as battling the security forces, the militants in many areas have tried to stamp out what they see as inappropriate practices such as music and dancing.
PESHAWAR, March 5: The shrine of Pashto mystic poet and saint Rehman Baba was bombed early on Thursday morning in Hazarkhwani area, badly damaging the structure.
The massive blast jolted people out of deep slumber in the nearby villages. Officials speculated that the bombing was aimed at frightening women off the shrine.
The shrine’s watchman had received a threat from suspected militants on his cellphone three days ago.
The high-intensity bombs almost destroyed the grave of the saint poet and gates of a mosque, canteen and conference hall in the spacious Rehman Baba Complex.
Police said the bombers had planted explosives around the pillars of the tomb to pull down the mausoleum.
Visibly shaken disciples of the saint, apprehending that the badly damaged structure of the shrine might come crashing down any moment, brandished sticks to force visitors to clear out.
Police said their suspicions fell on Lashkar-i-Islam chief Mangal Bagh.
“We have been able to give them a black eye and this is their way of getting back at us. It’s pure desperation,” a senior police official told Dawn.
Bomb disposal squad personnel said that five explosives, each weighing around five kilograms, were planted at the shrine.
The explosives were packed in containers which had been jointly connected and detonated simultaneously.
“The entire area was covered with thick smoke and dust after the blast,” Sardar Khan, president of the volunteers of the shrine association, told Dawn.
“A major portion of the grave was blown up and the building badly damaged, but luckily no one was present there,” he said.
Some “Taliban-like people” having long hair and beards used to come there and ask the caretaker why he had not barred women from visiting the shrine.
“Once two Taliban came and said that saying prayers in the complex mosque was haram. I told them to get lost,” the chief volunteer said.
He said that apparently the militants had entered the complex by scaling the boundary wall from the rear side and planted the explosives beneath the four main pillars and one in the grave by connecting them through an electric wire.
NWFP Minister for Culture and Tourism Syed Aqil Shah said although the complex was under the authority of the archives department, he would take up the matter of repairs and reconstruction with the chief minister.
The caretaker said three watchmen used to perform duty on rotation. This meant that only one guard was present at any given moment.
A watchman said that he was preparing for Fajr (morning) prayers when he heard a loud blast. “I was puzzled and couldn’t decide as to what I should do,” he said. “I had no weapon to resist any attacker.”
Caretakers and other employees said that they had time and again informed officials of the archives library to beef up security at the complex, but to no avail.
Malik Wazir, a member of the Rehman Baba Adabi jirga, said it was impossible for one watchman to keep an eye on all visitors spread over such a vast area.
He suggested that there must be at least three watchmen armed with weapons in each shift.
The nearby Akhun Baba graveyard had become a safe haven for vagabonds and no one could safely pass through the Rehman Baba Road after evening.
The tomb was a part of the spacious complex housing a conference hall, library, mosque, canteen, guest house, shrines of some other saints.
Construction of the complex began on Nov 17, 1991 and finished in 1994 at an estimated cost of Rs15 million.
یکہ توت پولیس سٹیشن کے ایس ایچ او زرولی خان نے بی بی سی کو بتایا کہ پشاور کی نواح میں ہزار خوانی کے علاقے میں واقع پشتو کے صوفی شاعر رحمان بابا کے مزار کو جمعرات کی صبح تقریباً پانچ بجے نشانہ بنایا گیا۔
ان کے مطابق دھماکہ خیز مواد مزار کے گرد تعمیر شدہ عمارت کے چاروں ستونوں کے پاس رکھے گئے تھے جسکے پھٹنے سے عمارت کو شدید نقصان پہنچا ہے۔ان کے بقول انہوں نے نامعلوم افراد کے خلاف ایف آئی آر درج کردی ہے البتہ اس سلسلے میں کسی کو گرفتار اور نہ ہی کسی کے ملوث ہونے کی نشاندہی ہوسکی ہے۔
رحمان ادبی جرگے کے سربراہ یوسف علی دلسوز نے بی بی سی کو بتایا کہ امام مسجد نے انہیں بتایا ہے کہ چند دن قبل نامعلوم افراد نے دھمکی دی تھی کہ وہ رحمان بابا کے مزار کو بہت جلد نشانہ بنائیں گا
عینی شاہدین کا کہنا ہے کہ دھماکے کی وجہ سے عمارت ایک طرف کو جھک گئی ہے اور بروقت اقدامات نہ کرنے کی صورت میں اسکے گرنے کا خدشہ موجود ہے۔
رحمان ادبی جرگے کے سربراہ یوسف علی دلسوز نے بی بی سی کو بتایا کہ امام مسجد نے انہیں بتایا ہے کہ چند دن قبل نامعلوم افراد نے دھمکی دی تھی کہ وہ رحمان بابا کے مزار کو بہت جلد نشانہ بنائیں گا ۔ ان کے مطابق دھمکی دینے والوں کا کہنا تھا کہ مزار میں منشیات کے عادی افراد آتے ہیں اور یہاں پر تعویز گنڈوں کا کاروبار بھی ہوتا ہے۔
انہوں نے کہا کہ رحمان با با کے مزار پر ہر سال موسم بہار کے آمد کے موقع پر ایک دو روزہ عرس کا انعقاد ہوتا ہے جس میں افغانستان اور پاکستان کے مختلف علاقوں سے ان کے ہزاروں عقیدت مند شرکت کرنے آ تے ہیں۔ان کے بقول اس بار بھی انہوں نے چار اور پانچ اپریل کو عُرس منانے کا اعلان کیا ہے۔
ان کے مطابق اس موقع پر مشاعرہ ہوتا ہے اور رحمان بابا کی شخصیت اور شاعری پر نامور ادیب مقالے پیش کرتے ہیں اور ساتھ میں قوالی کا پروگرام بھی ہوتا ہے۔
انہوں نے کہا کہ اس واقعہ کے بعد وہ پروگرام کے انعقاد کا ازسرِ نو جائزہ لیں گے لیکن اس سے قبل حکومت سے یہ مطالبہ کرتے ہیں کہ وہ مزار کی عمارت کی مرمت کے سلسلے میں جلد اقدامات کرے۔
پشتو کے نامور شاعر عبدالرحمان جنہیں عقیدت سے پشتون رحمان با با کے نام سے یاد کرتے ہیں پشتونوں میں سب سے زیادہ پڑھے جانے والے صوفی شاعر ہیں۔ رحمان با با سنہ سولہ پچاس میں پیدا ہوئے تھے اور سترہ سو پندرہ میں وفات پاگئے تھے۔
وہ ایک عوامی شاعر سمجھے جاتے ہیں اور انکی شاعری عصری علوم حاصل کرنے والوں سے زیادہ دینی علماء اور مدارس میں پڑھنے والوں طلباء میں اب بھی بہت زیادہ مقبول سمجھے جاتے ہیں۔ حال ہی میں پشاور میں برسوں سے مقیم اور پشتو پر مکمل دسترس رکھنے والے ایک برطانوی شہری رابرٹ سمپسن اور مومن خان نے انکی شاعی کا انگریزی میں ترجمہ کیا ہے ۔
رابرٹ سمپسن نے رحمان با با کے مزار پر حملے کے واقعہ پر افسوس کا اظہار کیا ہے۔ انہوں نے بی بی سی کو بتایا کہ ’مجھے یہ سن کر سخت دھچکا پہنچاہے کیونکہ پشتونخواء میں آج کل تشدد کی جو آگ بڑھک رہی ہے اس سے بجھانے کے لیے رحمان با با جیسے شاعر کے افکار سے رہنمائی حاصل کرنے کی سخت ضرورت ہے۔‘
ان کے بقول’رحمان بابا پشتونوں کی قومی شناخت کی علامت ہیں اور انہوں نے اپنی شاعری میں صوفیانہ انداز میں عشق، محبت، دوستی اور بھائی چارے کا درس دیا ہے۔‘
اس سے قبل جینالڈسن نے ’ناٹینگل آف پشاور‘ اور ایچ جی راورٹری نے ’گلستان روح، افغان پوئٹری اینڈ پروز‘ کے عنوان کے تحت ان کی شاعری کے کچھ حصے کا انگریزی میں ترجمہ کیا ہے۔
صوبہ سرحد میں کئی سالوں سے جاری شدت پسندی کے دوران کچھ ایسے گروپ بھی سامنے آئے ہیں جو پیری مریدی کے خلاف ہیں اور اس سے قبل انہوں نے پشاور میں مزاروں کو نشاننہ بنایا ہے اور کئی پیروں اور ان کے پیروکاروں کو قتل بھی کیا ہے۔
Munno Bhai, Jang, 7 March 2009
Who is Rahman Baba?
- “If the scales of justice were in your hand, You would count your mule equal to another’s horse.”
Rehman Baba (1632-1707)
Abdul Rahman Mohmand (Pashto: عبدالرحمان مومند) popularly known as Rahman Baba (Pashto: رحمان بابا) was called the Nightingale of Pakhtoonkhwa, the Pashto speaking region of Afghanistan and Pakistan. Rahman Baba is a legendary Pashto Sufi poet. His poetry places him alongside Khushal Khan Khattak for his contribution to Pashto poetry and literature.
The colour of his poetry is deep mystical. He occupies the same position in Pashto Literature which Hafiz Musle-ud-Din Shirazi does have in Persian.
He was born in 1632 A.D. at Deh Bahadur, a village, 4 km south of Peshawar.
He belonged to the Muhmand branch of Ghuria Khel or Ghori Khel tribe. His father, Abdul Sattar, was a peasant. He got his early education from a local religious scholar Mulla Muhammad Yousaf. When Mulla Yousaf went to Kohat he also followed his religious mentor. Abdul Rehman adopted the life of privations, austerity and asceticism, at the age of mere 20 years.
The peculiarity of Rehman Baba’s poetry is its fluency, accurate choice of words, originality and simplicity. Besides many others, Major Reverty in his book “Selection from the poetry of Afghans” has also paid rich contributes to him. He writes; Rehman Baba’s poetry is the heart beat of every Afghan and is recited through the Afghan lands.
Abdul Rehman Baba died in 1707 AD his tomb is situated near the Shrine of Akhuand Darwaizah Baba at Peshawar, which is visited by his followers and admirers throughout the year.
Rahman Baba’s only work is his famed Diwan. The Diwan of Rahman Baba is now considered one of the most defining bits of Pashtun literature ever published. Despite its fame amongst Pashtuns it has only recently been fully translated into the English language.
* Robert Sampson and Momin Khan, The Poetry of Rahman Baba
* Jens Enevoldsen, The Nightingale of Peshawar: Selections from Rahman Baba
* H. G. Raverty, The Gulistan-i-Roh: Afghan Poetry and Prose
* H. G. Raverty, Selections from the Poetry of the Afghans, 16th-19th century
- The Life of Rahman Baba
- Biography and Information
- Abdur Rahman Baba
- Rahman Baba in English
- Interlit Foundation
- Pashto Poets by Dr Tanvir Orakzai
By Haroon Rashid
BBC News, Peshawar
Rahman Baba is the Pashtuns’ most revered poet
Pashtun culture has suffered over the past few years with its link to the Taleban and Osama bin Laden.
But that image may soon be revised with the efforts of two English teachers, Robert Sampson and Momin Khan Jaja, based in Pakistan’s North-Western Frontier Province.
Working tirelessly over four years, they have translated the collected works of celebrated Pashtun poet, Rahman Baba, into English.
And one theme that is entirely absent from Rahman Baba’s work is jihad, or holy war.
The weighty volume, entitled The Poetry of Rahman Baba – Poet of the Pashtuns, is more than 900 pages long and attempts to show the Pashtuns’ devotion to peace, love and selflessness.
Whoever is not befriended by God, Rahman; Even if he has armies he is alone
These are the predominant thoughts that run through Rahman Baba’s poetry, which most Pashtuns find relevant even in today’s age of violence and terrorism.
There is hardly a Pashtun who does not know some of Rahman Baba’s work by heart.
Pashtun intellectuals say it is far more than poetry for those who understand it. Many feel that for the Pashtuns, it is a book next only to the Koran.
Saidu Baba, a revered saint from the Pakistani hill district of Swat, is known to have said that if the Pashtuns were ever asked to pray on a book other than the Koran, they would undoubtedly go for Rahman Baba’s work.
Having remained restricted to the Pashtuns for more than 300 years, the poetry is now available to the entire world. And the translators are hoping they have done justice to it.
“To keep up with the idea and thoughts of a poet is very challenging,” Momin Khan Jaja told the BBC News website. “But we tried our best to be genuine and sincere.”
Co-translator Robert Sampson hopes the translation will lead to a more widespread awareness and appreciation of a poetry that has had a deep influence on Pashtun life.
The book includes four chapters on the poet’s life as well as a commentary on his themes, which may help those who know little about sufi thought from three centuries ago.
“There is no doubt in the sanctity of Mecca, but a donkey won’t become a Hajj pilgrim by just going through the motions,” reads one of his famous couplets.
21 February 2005
A selection of Rahman Baba’s poetry
Sow flowers so your surroundings become a garden
Don’t sow thorns; for they will prick your feet
If you shoot arrows at others,
Know that the same arrow will come back to hit you.
Don’t dig a well in another’s path,
In case you come to the well’s edge
You look at everyone with hungry eyes
But you will be first to become mere dirt.
Humans are all one body,
Whoever tortures another, wounds himself.
- — Rahman Baba
Why I’m not dying
Why I’m not dying
Why I’m not dying,
Of the sorrow of separation,
Why I’m not dying,
Of this mourning intense.
Why I’m not dying,
Of the cruelty of this age,
Which snatches a lover from the lover.
Why I’m not dying
Of witnessing these mornings,
Which laugh at my sobs every rising day.
Why I’m not dying
Without my lover,
For it is a death, not to stare in the lover’s eyes.
Why I’m not dying,
To see these unfaithful drops of dew,
That leave the flower upon seeing a slight warmth.
Why I’m not dying,
Of this deadly miserable life,
That I’m carrying with myself,
O’Rehman from so long.
(trans: Adil Shah)
Such have your sorrows overpowered me
Such have your sorrows overpowered me,
That I’ve lost every place in and out. My sobs have rendered people restless,
Like fire of a burning dry wood engulfing the moistured.In your pain, I’m weeping like a candle,
But you are smiling at me like a bright morn.
My heart’s hanging in your path,
Like your black hair dangling in front of your face.
Tis’ a norm for all the sorrows to be crushed under your feet,
When you are burdened with that single grief.
They come towards you, leaving me behind,
All those who advisingly forbade me from your path.
Such is the effect of yours over the face of Rehman,
Like a flame of fire over a thinly dry stalk.
(trans: Adil Shah)
Urdu translation of one of Rahman Baba’s poems on ‘Dervesh’ translated by Professor Taha Khan. Taken from Saadullah Jan Barq, Express, 7 March 2009: