Friday, August 19, 2022

Parveen Shakir: A Pakistani Devotee of Radha Krishna

By Saquib Salim, New Age Islam 18-08-2022 Parveen Has Employed Imagery of Radha and Krishna at Several Places in Her Literature ----- Pakistani poetess Parveen Shakir ---- Tu Hai Radha Apne Krishan Ki Tera Koi Bhi Hota Naam (You are Radha of your Krishna No matter, what your name is) Most of us may find it hard to believe that the above lines have been penned by a Muslim woman poet from Pakistan. She is Parveen Shakir, one of the most popular Urdu poets of the 20th century. In these times when divisive political narratives seem to have overtaken the composite syncretic culture of the Indian subcontinent, it is hard to believe for common people that Lord Krishna has always remained a revered figure for Muslim writers of Urdu language. Politicians might have tried to stamp languages with communal identities but the truth remains that a language roots itself in culture, and not religion. Urdu, which has developed completely in India, has its roots in its culture. The metaphors, similes and words derive their origin from Indian culture. When it comes to the metaphors and similes for love, what expresses the emotion better than Radha and Krishna in Indian culture! People of every region, religion, caste, and language can identify themselves with the story of the most devoted love. Parveen Shakir, though a Pakistani, was a writer who belonged to this rich tradition of Urdu language. In her book Sadbarg, she wrote a poem titled Salma Krishna which points towards the fact that to become a devotee of Krishna one need not be a Radha, a Hindu, and any Muslim, say Salma, can also has this devotion. In a larger context, the idea that religion cannot put boundaries on romantic emotions is being expounded through the poem. Parveen writes: Tu Hai Radha Apne Krishan Ki Tera Koi Bhi Hota Naam (You are Radha of your Krishna No matter, what your name is) Murali Tere Bhiitar Baajti Kisi Ban Karti Bisraam (No matter in which forest you would have dwelled, the flute would have played inside your soul) Ya Koi Singhasan Biraajti Tujhe Khoj Hi Lete Shyaam (Or, you had been in a palace, Shyam would have found you) Jis Sang Bhi Phere Daalti Sanjog Me The Shyaam (Whoever, you had married, your soulmate was Shyam) Kya Mol Tu Man Ka Maangti Bikna Tha Tujhe Be-Daam (What price you would have asked for your heart when it had to be given for free) Bansi Ki Madhur Taano Se Basna Tha Ye Suna Dhaam (This empty heart had to be dwelled by the sweet notes of a flute) Girdhar Aa Kar Bhi Gaye Aur Man Maala Hai Wahi Naam (While Girdhar has already left, the beads of rosary still bear his name) Jogan Ko Pata Bhi Kya Ho Kab Subah Hui Kab Sham (The devoted lover has no sense of time in love) The poem does not seem far from the tradition of Mirabai, Raskhan and other well-known devotee poets. Parveen Shakir also served in Pakistan Civil Services as a Revenue official. The poem is not an aberration. Parveen has employed imagery of Radha and Krishna at several places in her literature. In the same book, another devotional poem Shyam! Main Tori Gayya Charaaun (Shyam! I will graze your cows) displays the utilization of Radha and Krishna to depict emotions of love. This poem is more of a devotional poem. Parveen writes, Aaye Sapno Mai Gokul Ke Raja Dene Sakhiyo Ko Aayi Badhaayi (The king of Gokul has visited in dreams, so I am telling my female friends) Krishna Gopal Rasta Hi Bhoole Radha Pyari to Sudh Bhool Aayi (Krishna Gopala has lost only way to his house, while Radha has lost her senses) The poem is full of imagery where Radha is crazily in love with Krishna’s flute and has lost all senses. The book was published in 1980, and Parveen died in 1994. Today, I wonder that a popular Muslim figure can show such a devotion towards Lord Krishna without being targeted and here a Pakistani official was publicly praising Lord Krishna. Source: Parveen Shakir: A Pakistani Devotee Of Radha Krishna URL: New Age Islam, Islam Online, Islamic Website, African Muslim News, Arab World News, South Asia News, Indian Muslim News, World Muslim News, Women in Islam, Islamic Feminism, Arab Women, Women In Arab, Islamophobia in America, Muslim Women in West, Islam Women and Feminism

No comments:

Post a Comment