"The weak lose themselves in God; the strong discover Him in themselves." ~ Allama Iqbal

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Open Your Eyes to Yourself

Eid Mubarak to everyone!

The New Moon of Eid

New moon of Eid,
You cannot manage to evade
The eager view
Of people waiting for a sight of you.
A thousand glances have
Conspired to weave
A net to catch you in.
Open your eyes
To yourself. Do not grieve
That you are a bare outline.
Within you lies
A real full moon.

~ Allama Iqbal

Monday, August 13, 2012

Dare and Live: Pakistan Remembered

May Pakistan be remembered, on this Independence Day, in the light of the words of Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah, Allama Iqbal, and the historian, screenwriter, educationist, and Iqbal scholar, Khurram Ali Shafique.

Go here to read the words of Quaid-i-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah on the occasion of the celebration of Iqbal Day in 1943.

View this excellent video created by MarghdeenTV.  It includes beautiful art, photographs of Iqbal, and some of Iqbal's most lovely passages from Javid Nama.

Go here to read about the release, on this auspicious date, of Khurram Ali Shafique's new book entitled, 2017: The Battle for Marghdeen.  As he describes:
"Marghdeen is the name of the ideal society conceived by Iqbal, the foremost Muslim thinker of modern times, in 1932. It is a world where life is inside-out, people know their destinies and there is no poverty, neediness, crime or injustice. In 2017: The Battle for Marghdeen, the author shows how such a society can be achieved in a short space of time, as long as we are prepared to change our perception of history and other domains of knowledge. 

This book presents the basic principles for achieving Marghdeen. They are illustrated with examples from modern history. There is a special emphasis on Pakistan and the Muslim world, but the principles can be applied anywhere in the world."
“One of the finest achievements of the human mind is to see, to understand, and to put the things seen and understood into a greater perspective. With Khurram Ali Shafique, some kind of thinking of the heart has returned into the arena: a greater perspective, so to speak.” Dr. Thomas Stemmer
I am personally very excited about the release of this new book, 2017: The Battle for Marghdeen.  My hope and prayer is that it will, God willing, spread by tongue, thought, heart, and soul, and contribute to nothing less than a new world born.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Marghdeen Now

In the Javid Nama, Allama Iqbal shares a journey through 7 stations. He is guided through these 7 by the spirit of Mawlana Rumi. One of the stations includes the planet Mars. Here Iqbal introduces Marghdeen.  Read this excellent abridged version of this Mars journey at:

Marghdeen is, we learn, a world that was the outcome of Barkhia, a Martian ancestor, refusing an offer made by Farzmurz to have a world free of any religious restriction. Indeed, this world offered by Farzmurz to Barkhia would be unknown to God. Barkhia resisted this offer, declined it, with the outcome being that God rewarded the descendants of of Barkhia with Marghdeen.

The people of Marghdeen are described as advanced in science and spirituality. What distinguishes them from earthly humans is that their knowledge is solely dedicated toward improving life. Selfless and simple, they are a race of beings who live soulfully. It is explained that, while the hearts of humans are contained in their bodies, the bodies of the Martians are contained in their hearts.

Marghdeen is described as a world in which no one is poor. No one is ruled by any other. A Martian astronomer offers a dramatic clarification, when asked about whether one might have a destiny of, for instance, being a beggar. He shares that there is no shortage of destinies, and that one only needs to ask God. He explains a secret of destiny: Change yourself and your world changes.

The Martian alludes to earthly humans, stating that they have forgotten themselves, and thus also genuine faith. Humans, he explains, conform to what is outside of themselves (including religion), while, however, leaving unsought and unrealized what is genuinely precious within themselves.

What was Iqbal communicating in this story of Marghdeen?

I propose that he points to a formula for how we human beings may choose to live. I also propose that he was not merely being poetic for the sake of sharing beautiful words. 

He was, I believe, giving something to us in this world, here and now, which, if understood, could be a pathway to a newly created world.  I emphasize that I do not view Marghdeen as merely poetic.  I believe Iqbal was pointing to something that is to be actually (for real) manifested in this place we call the world.

Iqbal believed strongly that all people should seek consensus with each other. That seems very achievable when we love one another. Indeed, love seems to be the way.  It is, I believe, the pathway toward creating a Marghdeen here and now.  

I believe that Marghdeen may consist of genuinely choosing to connect with other people through an ethos founded on Love, instead of through bodies. So we depart from connecting with other people as things. Rather, we connect on the basis of love which has the power to generate the offspring of sincere respect for the opinions of all people. The genuine respect for the opinions of all people is a manifestation of love (and not merely, in the absence of love, what is just tolerance).

In love, one’s personal ego would be eclipsed in the greater being of the collective awareness/consciousness (manifesting as genuine respect for the opinions of all people in one's culture).  Marghdeen can then arise because of a love-rooted acknowledgement and respect for other people.  One truly desires what is best for one's neighbor. 

This awareness of the larger, collective group (culture, nation, all the world) is not merely being aware of the collective self, but actually being a part of it, essentially dousing the personal ego in the waters of the larger, collective self. Adab brings us along this path, acting as a check and balance on one’s personal, willful, self, allowing the natural growth of something much larger to occur.  

Acknowledging our Common Source, and loving This Source (and all people as expressions of It), we can come together with a shared vision of principles upon which all people can agree. It is a like-mindedness of heart, and not merely another contrived way of putting forward a particularized agenda. 

If there's an agenda, it's one of love, adab, and proactively seeking consensus with everyone in one's culture, nation, world.  It is being big enough (by being small enough) to put aside one's personal agendized drive and, instead, holding the Good of All as supreme.

Quenching one’s personal ego by consciously placing it in the larger context, the larger self, of one’s culture, one’s nation, and even all of humanity essentially dethrones the head, and elevates the heart into her rightful, sovereign place. This replicates what is described in the Javid Nama of the bodies of the inhabitants of Marghdeen being inside their hearts.

Our hearts can indeed become like those described in Marghdeen. If they are now different than Marghdeen hearts, perhaps it's only because a very subtle, but powerful, shift (change) has not occurred.

Can we not enable this shift by requesting a new destiny?