Monday, November 12, 2007


dil-e-naadaa.N tujhe huaa kyaa hai ?
aaKhir is dard kii davaa kyaa hai ?
[dil-e-naada.N- naïve heart]

दिल-ए-नादाँ तुझे हुआ क्या है?
आख़िर इस दर्द की दवा क्या है?

Oh naïve heart, what has happened to you?
What is the eventual relief of your pain?

Ghalib castigates his heart in the first verse. Oh naïve heart, what is the matter with you? Why are you in such a bad shape? What is the cure of this pain? He implies that there is no cure of the pain of love or the pining heart.

hum hai.n mushtaaq aur vo bezaar
yaa ilaahii ye maajaraa kyaa hai ?
[mushtaaq: eager, bezaar: dissatisfied/disinterested]

हम हैं मुश्ताक और वो बेजार
या इलाही यह माजरा क्या है?

I am eager, and she disinterested
Oh God! What is happening here?

Ghalib complains that while he is all eager, the beloved does not seem to care. He asks God as to why this is so? Why can’t the beloved at least listen to him?

mai.n bhii muu.Nh me.n zabaan rakhataa huu.N
kaash puuchho ki muddaa kyaa hai ?
[muddaa: matter/issue]

मैं भी मूंह में ज़बान रखता हूँ
काश पूछो कि मुद्दा क्या है?

Even I have a tongue in my mouth
Wish some one would seek my opinion too on the matter.

Ghalib feels the slight of his beloved. While she keeps asking others, she never asks him (of his condition). He says, even I have matters to express, wish she would ask me too! He believes his tale of love for her will completely overshadow what she has heard from others.

*jab ki tujh bin nahii.n koii maujuud
phir ye ha।ngaamaa, ai Khudaa kyaa hai ?

जब कि तुझ बिन नहीं कोई मौजूद
फिर यह हंगामा ए खुदा क्या है?

When nothing is present here apart from you,
Why this commotion all around, O God?

*ye parii cheharaa log kaise hai.n ?
Gamazaa-o-ishvaa-o-adaa kyaa hai ?
[parii cheharaa: beautiful face]
[gamzaa-o-ishva-o-ada: side-glances, airs and coquetry]

ये परी चेहरा लोग कैसे हैं?
गम जा -ओ-इश्व-ओ-अदा क्या है?

How are these with beautiful visages?
What is all these side glances, airs and coquetry?

*shikan-e-zulf-e-ambarii kyo.n hai ?
nigah-e-chashm-e-surmaa saa kyaa hai ?
[shikan: wrinkle, zulf: hair/tresses, ambarii: fragrance]
[chashm-e-surma: antimony/surma blackened eyes।

शिकन-ए-जुल्फ-ए-अम्बरी क्यों है?
निगाह-ए-चस्म-ए-सुरमा सा क्या है?

Why do the/her curls of the tresses smell of fragrance?
What needs do the surma blackened eyes serve?

*sabazaa-o-gul kahaa.N se aaye hai.n
abr kyaa chiiz hai havaa kyaa hai
[sabz-o-gul: greenery and flowers]
[abr: clouds]

सबज़ा-ओ-गुल कहाँ से आये हैं?
अब्र क्या चीज़ है, हवा क्या है?

From where have the greenery and flowers come?
What makes the clouds and the air?

Another set of philosophical verse from Ghalib. We found these four verses marked with * as an elaboration of the same theme. The last three verses, exemplify the first ‘sher’ marked with *. As in the Sufi tradition which believes that nothing exists apart from ‘God’, Ghalib ask inquiringly, “If nothing exists apart from the Lord himself, why this commotion and hustle bustle?” Why this futile rigmarole of existance? Why the conundrum of life? What are all these beautiful women with their long hairs and coquetry? Where did we get all these flowers, greenery and clouds from? He implies that all these attract us so much that we forget about their Creator. While they are all the manifestation of the same Supreme Being, but he laments that their multiplicity confuses us and prevents us from understanding the Supreme Being.
The theme of his first sher of Diwan-e-Ghalib i.e. "naqsh fariyadi.." resonate in this sher too.

hamako unase vafaa kii hai ummiid
jo nahii.n jaanate vafaa kyaa hai.
[vafaa: faithfulness]

हमको उनसे वफ़ा कि है उम्मीद
जो नहीं जानते वफ़ा क्या है।

I am hoping for faith from her,
Who does not know what faithfulness is all about.

How foolish of me, Ghalib says to expect faithfulness from someone who does not understand faithfulness. In this verse Ghalib distinguishes between faithfulness in love and passion in love. When we are young, love for us is mostly passionate; it is only when love matures does care and faithfulness substitute passion.

haa.N bhalaa kar teraa bhalaa hogaa
aur darvesh kii sadaa kyaa hai ?
[darvesh: mendicant; sadaa: voice]

हाँ भला कर तेरा भला होगा
और दरवेश कि सदा क्या है?

Yes, you do good deeds for others and good things will happen to you,
What else is the call of the mendicant?

Ghalib says, “Do unto others as you want them to do to you.” That is what the faqir always says. Nazm says that in this sher Ghalib acts cheeky. He asks his beloved to bestow favours on him. If she does so, God in turn will bestow favours on her.

jaan tum par nisaar karataa huu.N
mai.n nahii.n jaanataa duaa kyaa hai
[nisar: sacrifice]

जान तुमपर निसार करता हूँ
मैं नहीं जानता दुआ क्या है।

I offer my life to you
I don’t know anything else as a prayer.

Ghalib says that while others may wish his beloved well in their prayers, he offers his life to her. So he is more sincere than others who merely pray for her.

mai.n ne maanaa ki kuchh nahii.n 'Ghalib'
muft haath aaye to buraa kyaa hai ?

मैंने माना कि कुछ नहीं ग़ालिब
मुफ्त हाथ आये तो बुरा क्या है?

I realize that ‘Ghalib’ is not much
But if you get him free, where is the problem?

Ghalib tells his beloved that he realizes that he is nothing to her, is useless, but why not accept him; for he comes free of cost. He is seeking nothing in return. He is ready to be her slave for free.





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