The One Who Reads People, Becomes a Dervish
10th May 2018
Rabia says Salam to Dervish!
Rabia envies Dervish who lives a free life and she is enslaved by an earthly master. Although her heavenly Creator has given her an insight of an infinite intuitive freedom, yet these few moments are limited to the solitary nights. Perhaps her earthly master has not yet witnessed Rabia conversing with her heavenly Lord, so she has yet to get freedom.
O Dervish! Its 3 AM with me. It’s the time when stars shine more intensely. They appear glowing and twinkling. Then an incandescent star appears on the horizon to announce that it’s the time for mating, the infusing of two times into each other. Then the two times, night and day go into each other’s cozy embrace. The red color is splashed all over on the horizon to celebrate the union, like the face of a shy bride during her lovemaking with her lover. Then they part ways. The redness turns white as the day brightens up. The hot emotions change into a satisfying coolness.
O Dervish! You have answered my question in the most elaborate manner. It has entirely satisfied me to the depth of my aesthetics. You have also asked few questions. In the response a booklet can be written. But Rabia an intellectually free captive has no time for herself albeit to write a booklet. She wishes to reply in leaflets. If she desires to answer your questions in few words, it would be something like this…
Rabia had never thought to become a writer. Rather, she wished to become a painter. The colors haunted her, be it of canvas, the life or the nature. But she owned none of these. This dearth was in way a sacrifice of her life as well as her feminine nature. It was a sacrifice of her dreams and her emotions.
Rabia tried her best to live a normal life, the life of a common girl. She wished to walk on the highway of life, bare footed. But it never happened. Now she feels that she was and still is in the grip of an unknown force. The power that erects walls on the path of her longings and desires. She cannot surmount those barriers. For the entire life Rabia was denied what she wished for, be it the love, her happiness or any other desire. But in turn the nature had been bestowing upon her what she had never thought of. As they say: “When God takes away something precious from you, He rewards you in an unimaginable manner.” This is the law of nature.
Then a time arrived when Rabia understood Rabia Basri’s this saying: “Without God’s, will one cannot surmise to regret on his or her sins.” She also understood the stories of the ancient Prophets; Joseph and Moses. Prophet Joseph was shown a dream that he was thrown into the ditch by his siblings where he could have been a feast for desert wolves. It happened but he came out alive, purchased by the merchants of a caravan and sold to Aziz, the king of Egypt. He lived rest of his life in the palace of a king – in the most protected environment. It was made possible by the invisible Power that holds the strings of ‘possible’ and ‘impossible.’ Rabia also understood the tale of Moses. His mother put the infant Moses in a wooden box and left it to row over the waters of River Nile. How it was possible that he reached the palace of Pharaoh? He too was raised in the palace by the King who was supposed to kill him in his very infancy. Therefore, Rabia unknowingly and forcibly lived all her life hanging between possibilities and impossibilities.
O Dervish! A few days back Rabia was talking over Tassawaf (mysticism) with Irfan Ul Haq Sahib. From nowhere the word Dervish came under discussion. Irfan Sahib explained: “The one who reads books, becomes a learned and the one who reads people becomes a Dervish.” So, you have embarked upon a journey of reading people.
In his previous letter Dervish wrote about Rabia Basri. Yes, this Rabia too has a passionate love for the Saint. She adores her, rather idealize her to the extent that she had pledged on the morning of her youth: If Rabia ever had a daughter she would name her after Rabia Basri’s.
This Rabia (I) was the first daughter on both sides of my family. Her uncle wished to name the girl after a woman like of whom did not exist in the history. He named her only niece after Rabia Basri –Rabia.
Rabia grew up her love with the mystical Saint intensified. It was a passionate attachment with the historical mystic woman. This Rabia searched for Rabia Basri’s books. She found some poetry of Basri and translated it into Urdu.
Rabia was delighted and impressed when she read about Rabia Basri’s prime times. In one of the myths even Allah ordered Kaaba to receive Rabia Basri on eve of her pilgrimage. One gets scared of the spiritual pedestal occupied by the greatest mystic woman of her time. Men all over wish to dominate women folk. They leash out atrocities on their women. Such urge of commanding over women folk is driven by the fear of such great women in the history of mankind.
O Dervish! Rabia has understood the glory of a woman by Khulah (right of a wife to demand a divorce from her husband). On such a demand she is not questioned. Just the gifts are returned, and she gets free. On the contrary, in case of divorce by the husband, it’s a hectic process. Despite his disliking many a times he keeps living in a hateful union. Hence the nature protects will of the woman. The creator has made a strange psyche. If love drops from a woman’s heart the ocean of love turns into the barren rocks. Every sound turns back like an echo. The fertile land changes into a barren soil.
The man keeps sowing the seeds of his behavior to his partner. The weeds of hatred unknowing growing in the soil of their relationship. Then a day comes when it becomes impossible to enjoy a loving relationship. In my land the respect for a woman has never been accepted. It remains a dream. Over here she is neither Eve, Ayesha, Khadija, Maryam, Asya nor Rabia. She is a just a physical body. The body has learnt to deceive her counterpart. It has got away from its natural and soulful manifestation. Therefore, both men and women here are miserably looking for true love in each other.
O Dervish! Alas we view a person, beyond what lies between our thighs to make this world lust free and peaceful.
O Dervish! An English story writer and fiction translator, Colonel Naeem Ashraf is a literary friend of mine. The other day we talked about a picture that showed Fairmont Springs Hotel in Banff, a tourist resort at two hours’ drive from Calgary. The history reveals that a hundred years ago a rail track was laid in that mountainous part of Canada. The laborers worked in minus temperatures having no decent hideout. As they say: “The need is the mother of invention.” Canadians built this eight storied building with stones. The eye witnesses tell that despite having passed one hundred years, the structure has not deviated an inch from its origin.
Yet, the modern world, O Dervish is progressing at god speed, leaving behind the stony buildings. Science is endeavoring to reach to the planets beyond the Moon. Having fulfilled his dream of flying in the air like a bird, the man is now busy exploring the depths of seas and the planet Earth. I am a firm believer; the day is not far off when the science will prove the very existence of God in physical shape. That would be the Dooms Day. But, shall the dwellers of Rabia’s land ever evolve intellectually? Or we would remain engrossed talking about the success stories of developed nations? Will ever the humanity smile in my land or Rabia would acquire salvation being a believer by birth?
Over here the dawn is about to crack. The ‘incandescent star’ is drifting away to some unknown space. Sooner the reddish horizon caused by mating of two moments would change into the silky white. Then the above 40-degree temperature would start burning the souls albeit the bodies. The humans are happy having deforested the country side to build wide highways, roads and plazas. It has caused the global warming to the degree of hell-fire heat. He calls it the progress.
Rabia begs leave as she fears light and gets perturbed. She cannot face light.
O Dervish! Allah be with you.