Explicating Shina Terms and Terminologies (II)

By Syed Jamil Uddin

REGARDLESS of pertinence or relevance to the subject matter, the great inspiration drawn from Abdul Khaliq Taj’s sterling composition with the haunting refrain ‘kachak bosomet’ – an impassioned utterances ejaculating from his seething heart – as true and faithful indices of his furtive and feeling heart – makes something one cannot help referring to. The poem literally enthrals all lovers of peace and those staunchly believing in pluralism, prompts its particular mention. In this composition, he poured out his aching heart on feeling jolted, tossed and unnerved to the very fiber, by the unsavory happenings, cried out thus, a couple of years back. Remarkably marvelous and marvelously vivid, the poem vibrates with the feeling of longing. The poet was seen reciting this at the residence of Ghulam Abbas poetically surnamed Nasim, at Danyore couple of years ago which was instantly aired by local cablenetwork. As abhorrent all poets are of the disruptive and divisive forces, renowned and prominent poets  of the area gathering at above venue including Abdul Hafiz Shakir, Khushi Muhammad Tariq, Jamshed Dukhee etc. each recited ‘kalam’ having a bearing on and pertinent to the central theme ‘peace’. Their versifications were invariably ebullient with great zeal and passion, exquisitely sweet and perfect pieces of art, as the gathering soon turned into a majestic poetical symposium centered thematically on and with deep yearning for ‘peace’  obviously bemoaning the continuum of unsavory incidents of those times.

Seeking an abiding longing for the immediate return of peace, tranquility in the area which had historically been an enviably sedate and serene place, each of them brought out his prodigious compositions reciting so excellently that the audience was literally spellbound. One famous verse from Abdul Khaliq Taj worth quote is: ‘mai shehree dajee khak bosomed, begonah jag adan hilak bosomet, nara bazee na they dorrode veyama, chok thama mas laban napak bosomet’. How long should I keep quiet over the burning of my cities and the indiscriminate killing of the innocent? Should I still shun condemnation of the perpetrator and instead praise them regardless of the blood of the innocent spilled so ruthlessly? Yet in another couplet: ‘mas tut chinamus yar achak bosomet, bas khudas bandet chinain kachak bosomet’, he is expressive of his unfathomable and profound love for the beloved motherland. Briefly, the ebb and flow of Abdul Khaliq Taj’s diction ‘kachak bosomet’ reminds one of a mighty ocean the billows of which rise, roll and recede in quick recession. Love, it may be said, is a great link between human beings, and other objects as also between humans inter se. It is the rapport arising out of profound sentiments and is deeper and stronger than all other links. It is the intense linking which may be for human beings or an object or any subject. Patriotism is love for ones country while the concept of nationhood is based on unity of the citizens and love for the land where they all dwell. Abraham Lincoln, in his momentous speech at the Senate exhorted his countrymen to have “love for all and hatred for none”. The passion for love is noble, pure and great. It also entails sacrifices and sufferings for others. God is love while humans are His creation. Love is reality and is believed to be eternal. It is pure human passion whose source is not avarice. It has no end and is a symbol of virtue. Love has played a conspicuous role in human history. It is also prominently mentioned in mythology while love lore are composed and relished by mankind. Love in English corresponds to ‘chin’ in Shina. An emerging poet and intellectual –  Mazhar Ali Mazhar, in his famous encomium on ‘chin’ – corresponding to love in  the popular English lexicon – has versified on its profundity as alluded to in an earlier piece of writing. But, nonetheless, one crucial aspect associated with the same that altogether went unmentioned was its stupendous composition by Waris Hussain Waris – said to be a fine arts scholar, currently doing M.Phil from USA – who, true to his art, amazingly finessed it and presented it to the audience – something going viral via social media. Significantly, diverse connotations are associated with the word ‘chin’ as highlighted by Mazhar. Put in all brevity ‘chin’ in Shina in essence, having wide and extensive connotations and as such, it signifies life and forms the veritable bedrock of the existence.  It has to be reiterated here that its salient features include its jumping cadence, the wonderful array of words marshaled in an easy fashion  are worth praise which have been additional charm and value by the fore said composer and singer Waris Hussain Waris. Hene it unexaggeratedly gets styled as ‘fantasy let loose’ with the poet trying to approach the subject in an original and novel way when he conjures to his mind’s eye the fanciful figure of love describing it in an impassioned language, each verse getting marked for elegance and direct style, affectionate tone, warmth of love and graceful similes and metaphors. It is studded with some very sublime ideas and lofty thoughts to such an extent that these essentially make him a mystic as his poem is seemingly replete with mystical effusions containing the germs of mystical thoughts – all mystical thoughts lying embedded therein. It is pertinent to mention that Mazhar, as a many-sided genius, is a renowned researcher of Shina and has delved deep as far back as the Shamanic era in this region. This made him very well-poised to explicate Shina terms and terminologies like ‘daraneji’, ‘yudainee’, ‘barai’, ‘aagaee’, ‘berdee’ etc. in true linguistic and etymological eontexts, albeit all these outcomes still be reduced to writing fully, elaborately and graphically. It would be profitable to make a mention of Ghulam Nabi Wafa’s  ‘geleet geleet han, mai haralee zhingat, Switzerland ga Londonejo kam noosh’ which so ebullient with love for the motherland.

It cannot be gainsaid that the splendor of the diction, the painting imagination, the glowing imagery of lyric, the gorgeous description of the scenes – are all redolent of his mastery of the art are the sterling qualities poets of hues and colors, say, those adept in versatility, in epics, in romance, in mysticism, in lyrics and in panegyrics abound – each of them deserving a place in the galaxy of these luminaries, invariably espouse. These stalwarts belonging to each select band are masters of passionate expression and impassioned thoughts the scintillating sparks of their respective outputs diffuse far and wide. They nonetheless, are metaphorically finest beads of the uncompromising catholicity and unimpeachable modernistic tendencies, never budging an inch from the rules and conventions. Admittedly, a poet applies himself heart and soul to nurture his art and raise it to the dignity so artistically. Last but not least is to make a mention to the effect that Abdullah Malang, conspicuously ranking among the older class of Shina poets – gave a reorientation to Shina poetry by flooding it with the dazzling splendor of mystic thoughts and phraseology. It is also be pertinent to make a brief mention of Habib ur Rehamn Malangi which too has done an amazing work as evidenced by the poetry launched sometime ago by the KIU while another masterpiece “Environment-specific” poetry of Syed Asad Hassan already published by this center of higher learning is yet to be formally launched. Given that it is not necessary for a poet to come out with a clear-cut message. As generally remaining the case with all poets, they course, have a mission to accomplish but that they may not necessarily be of strict pedantic and pedagogic nature this is notwithstanding the fact that a poet is essentially a teacher but his teaching may not be of a concerted and concentrated type. A poet is a seer and a visionary who reduces his feelings in an inspired language.  For instance, a poet with his inimitable war-notes may serve a nation’s heart while another may sing the re-union of the souls with the Maker whilst the one teaching the philosophy of keeping one’s self true to the kindred points of heaven and home. Again those fired with love of one’s homeland would rouse the deadened spirit of nationalism. An Iqbal is needed to teach the lesson of self-preservation and the conquest of the negative. Some have to broadcast the glory of national unity, neighborly love and brotherly affection. True, poets of all hues and artists, or to put it, the intelligentsia as the standard-bearers of peace and amity, love and brotherhood make invaluable contributions for society always striving to bring about positive societal transformations attuned to the changing times and climes put it succinctly. To put synoptically, a poet always believes staunchly in a pluralistic society and is proud of being part of such a society or the nation having unity in diversity.


The writer belongs to Gilgit and is an alumnus from KIU. He can be reached at Email: iamkazmee@gmail.com


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