The Ginan Gist – By Karim Maherali
The Holy Qur’an provides us with contrasting perspectives regarding the status of the Prophet reflecting the diversity of backgrounds and the capacity to understand the Message within the Umma. On the one hand, the Prophet is only an ordinary human being passively and faithfully transmitting the revelations: Say: I do not say: ‘With me are the treasures of God’ and I do not know the Invisible, and I do not say that I am an angel – I follow only that which is revealed to me. (Sura 6:50) On the other hand, there are verses suggesting his exceptional and Divine nature: as God taught Adam the names (Sura 2:30), thus He taught Muhammad the Qur’an (Sura 96:3); Muhammad was sent as a Mercy for the worlds – rahmatan lil-aalamin (Sura 21: 107); there are several places equating obedience to the Prophet as being equal to obedience to God – Obey God and obey His messenger.
This Ginan reflects the latter perspective. The Prophet was the bearer of the Light Nur Muhammadi which has existed since creation and which continues to create and sustain the Universe in its multiple dimensions and life forms creating a balanced ecology. At present according to our tradition, the bearer is Mowlana Hazar Imam who is the Pir.In this regard, in the verse from the Holy Qur’an mentioned in the Ziyarat-e-Mayyat it is stated:
Innalaha wa malaikatahu yusallun alan-nabiye
Ya ayyuhallazeena aamanoo sallu alayhi wa sallimu tasleema
Allah and his angels shower blessings on the Prophet
O you who believe! Ask blessings on him, and salute him with a worthy salutation.(Sura 33:56)
ye mīṭhā mahamad nām suno bhāi munīvarā
|2||Shamshu Bandali Haji (Alwaez)|
Transliteration, Translation and Commentary
|Ye mitha Muhammad naam sunno bhai munivaro……………1|
O my momin brothers! Listen, the name Muhammad is sweet.
Comment: In the Shahada, La-Illaha-Il-Allaah-Muhammad-ur-Rasulilah which binds over a billion Muslims, the name Muhammad is close to Allah and hence invoking the name can bring one close to Him, and therefore it feels sweet. The name Muhammad in this respect intercedes for the one invoking it. Annemarie Schimmel a well-respected scholar of Islamic mysticism explains in her book And Muhammad Is His Messenger why the name Muhammad is so special and sweet in Islamic tradition:
Since the name is part, and a very important part indeed, of a thing or a person, it carries baraka, blessing power, with it, and when someone is endowed with special power or occupies a particularly lofty rank, his name too can work in a mysterious way on people who are given the same name. It is therefore not surprising that Muslims have always ascribed a very special baraka to the Prophet’s name.
|Bin thambh jamin aasman – sunno bhai munivaro……………2|
O my momin brothers! Listen, the earth and the heavens have been created without pillars.
Comment: The significance of the mention of the earth and the heavens without pillars is to indicate that they were created as a Mercy for the sake of elevation of the souls. Without pillars would indicate that it is a continuum without ‘gaps’ and hence there is a constant interaction between the earth and the heavens. For example, a work of art can influence social relations and governance in societies.
|Chaar jug ne chaar khaan – sunno bhai munivaro……………3|
O my momin brothers! Listen, four yugas and four stages of creation (came into existence).
Comment: The four Yugas are time periods which move in cycles and hence are symbolic of all previous ages through which the individual souls evolve. The four stages of creation is symbolic of the stages that life evolves from innate matter to man who is considered as the crown of creation. In our tradition the chaar khaan are defined by the mode of reproduction:
- Sitej – Reproduction by fission; multiplication of living cells, ameba, germ, bacteria, etc. In other words, creation from the earth, for example metal, minerals, mountains.
- Jarej – Reproduction from seed or twig such as trees, plants, vegetation. In other words, creation on the earth for example trees, plants.
- Indej – Reproduction from an egg such as birds, reptiles, fish, etc.
- Udhboj – Reproduction through a womb such as animals and human beings.
|Aaj kal vaari subhaan – sunno bhai munivaro……………4|
O my momin brothers! Listen, today is the time for Glory (Subhaan).
Comment: The present time under the Guide is a culmination of the process of evolutions through past lives (both human and non-human life forms) alluded in the previous verse. Obedience to him can become a glorious existence and affords the opportunity of union with the Ultimate – fana fi Allah (annihilation in God), the realization of the purpose of our existence.
|Nauv rupe Nirnijan – sunno bhai munivaro……………5|
O my momin brothers! Listen, the Nirinjan (indescribable and formless) assumed nine forms.
Comment: These forms were distinct from Nur Muhammadi. They were the manifestations of the Nirinjan (Divine Essence).
|Nar Ali avatar jaann – sunno bhai munivaro……………6|
O my momin brothers! Listen, know the manifestation of the Master Ali.
Comment: Hazarat Ali and the Imams after him are considered the 10th form and is called dasmo Naklanki Avtar.
|Nar Ali jaaniyen to naa jaanaa
avaro saath – sunno bhai munivaro……………7
O my momin brothers! Listen, if you recognize Imam Ali, you need not go elsewhere.
Comment: There is no need for anyone who recognises the Imam in his essence to go anywhere else for spiritual upliftment although he/she may seek knowledge from anywhere. The Imam has provided us with JamatKhanas to fulfil our spiritual and social needs and hence there is no need for a murid to seek other sources.
|Chaar jugni beli sohi Muhammad aaj – sunno bhai munivaro……………8|
O my momin brothers! Listen, he, who was the companion in the four yugas, the same Muhammad is present today.
Comment: In our tradition the institution of Imamat and Piratan have always existed since the beginning. At times such as the present, the Imam retains both roles and at times he designates another person from the Ahl al-Bayt to fulfil the role of Piratan. Prophet Muhammad was the first Pir in the present cycle.
|Nabi sarikhaa chaandnaa so
dono divlaa haath – sunno bhai munivaro……………9
O my momin brothers! Listen, those who have a shining lamp like Prophet Muhammad in them, are like those having lamps in both hands (their paths are illuminated and clear).
Comment: In the Holy Qur’an the Prophet is referred to as sirajun munir, a shining lamp (Sura 33:46). Those who are spiritually enlightened in our Tariqah carry the same Nur and are guided to be permanently on Sirat al-Mustaqeem.
|Sayyed Saaleh boliyaa ginaan – sunno bhai munivaro……………10|
O my momin brothers! Listen, Sayyed Saleh has said this Ginan.