In this in-depth study of Syad Imam Shah’s ancient ginan, Naklanki Geeta (generally referred to as granth because of its voluminous size), Shiraz Pradhan explores its much advanced scientific ideas compared to the contemporary knowledge of the era. Pradhan seeks to explain how the composition’s numerous verses might relate to cutting-edge scientific developments taking place today. Pradhan further explores the concept of Nur (Light), and … Continue reading Ginan Naklanki Geeta, the Hadron Collider & Modern Scientific Knowledge | Simerg
Association for the Study of Ginans presents, the next International Ginan Conference which will be held in London on November 21 and 22, 2015. This two-day event will include presentation of papers by eminent speakers. Professor Karim H. Karim (Director, Carleton Centre for the Study of Islam, Carleton University, Ottawa, Canada) to present a keynote address on “Burying Religious Heritage: The Serial Interment of the … Continue reading Association for the Study of Ginans: International Ginan Conference, UK – November 21-22, 2015
Lead Vocals: Taufiq Karmali Chrorus: Shabnam Khan, Sharmin Bandali Alibhai, Shinatta Patel, Ali Hemani, Saima Asaria, Hanif Bandali. Music Produced by: Shri Deepak Khazanchi, Sai Studios London UK – Recorded in UK and India Source: http://www.youtube.com/watch Continue reading Taufiq Karmali: Sahebji Tu(n) More Man Bhaave [YouTube]
Karim Tharani of the University of Saskachewan provides an overview of Ginan Central web portal that has been created with the goal of preserving and providing access to Ismaili ginanic literature in order to promote research and education. The portal is made up of a number of projects including a Ginan Index and Search Tool, Ginan Recitations as well sections on Khojki learning and a … Continue reading Ginan Central: A Portal to the Ismaili Community’s Ginanic Literature | Simerg
A youth affair Introduction, Aly Sunderji: This past Easter long weekend, the Vancouver jamat was treated to a unique and first of its kind Mehfil-e-Ginan. What made this mehfil so unique was that this was the first time since Silver Jubilee that Vancouver had its own “Youth based Ginan Mehfil.” The Vancouver jamat is fortunate to have amazing singers such as Khursheed Nurali (Sheerazi), Anaar Kanji, Nimet Jaffer, Venky, … Continue reading Vancouver, Canada: Youth Based Ginan Mehfil
OurWonderfulTradition.com is a new site where carefully selected ginans with music are available for free download or streaming. The site’s launch will be marked with the release of ‘Footprints’ – a collection of ginans by Irfaan Manji. Irfaan Manji is a Canadian Ismaili Muslim composer currently residing in Toronto, Ontario. Irfaan comes from a family of widely-known musicians and ginan reciters, and credits his father … Continue reading Irfaan Manji: New Ginans Website – OurWonderfulTradition.com
Where the Qur’anic symbolism uses the allegory of the Holy Tree (kashajaratin tayyibatin) for Divine Guidance, the same simili is used in the Ginans to indicate the spiritual aspect of Imamat (Divine Guidance). Similarly, where the Qur’an refers to the essential function of Imamat as Guidance, the Ginans also refer to this by comparing it with the Eternal Lamp of Light, which enlightens humanity. According … Continue reading Hakimali V. Surani: Imamat in Ismaili Ginanic Literature
Ginans are a vast collection consisting of several hundred Ginans, composed by Pirs and Sayyids, which have been a central part of the religious life of the Nizari Ismaili community of the Indian Subcontinent now residing in many parts of the world. Ginans were composed in local vernaculars to teach the message of the Qur’an and the Isma’ili interpretation to non-Arabic speaking peoples. The earliest … Continue reading Ginans continued to be composed by Sayyids
Ginans are religious lyrics which have been a central part of the religious life of the Nizari Ismaili community of the Indian Subcontinent that today resides in many countries around the world. The Ginans served as secondary texts in the local languages to convey the teachings of the Qur’an and the Isma’ili interpretation to non-Arabic speaking peoples. Ginans are poetic compositions attributed to Pirs and Saiyads, or … Continue reading Music is a vital characteristic of Ginans
Zahir K. Dhalla has launched his third non-profit eBook which for a limited time (3 days starting today, that is Friday February 20 to Sunday February 22) he is making available free at Amazon.com. You may download this book now to read it later (download information below). “Nine Ginans of Nine Ismaili Pirs: A Brief History of Khoja Ismailis” Contains a selection of nine Ginans … Continue reading Zahir K. Dhalla: Nine Ginans of Nine Ismaili Pirs – Download Free eBook, available for 3 days
A conspicuous feature in the intellectual history of Nezāri Ismaʿili Shiʿism has been the fundamental impulse to translate the concept of the Imam, which is the central aspect of their faith, within the frameworks of the various philosophical and theological systems it encountered as the movement spread geographically. As a result, Ismaʿili religious texts are frequently characterized by their use of motifs from multiple streams of thought. Thus, works written during the political heyday of Fatimid Ismaʿili rule in Egypt and North Africa in the 9th and 10th centuries draw upon Islamic, Gnostic, Neoplatonic, and Manichean elements to elaborate the concept of the Imam. Similarly, Ismaʿili treatises written in Persia and Central Asia from the 15th century onward explain the significance of the Imam utilizing the Sufi discourse that had become so widespread in these areas. Continue reading “Isma’ilism In Gināns”
Tahir Ali Shah is an Ismaili singer from Chitral, Pakistan.
Music had a high place in the cultures of pre-Islamic dynasties. Amongst the earliest historical records of Persian music are the writings of the Greek historians who refer to the use of ritual and ceremonial music at the time of the Medes (900-550 BC) and the Achaemenian (559- 331 BC) dynasties. The performance of music continued both in the court and in society after the … Continue reading The Qasida is the devotional poetry of Ismailis of Persian heritage
Imamshah (d. 1512), a son of Pir Hasan Kabirdin, had settled in Gujarat in the Indian subcontinent. A tradition in the Indian Ismaili community distinguishes Ginan composers after Imamshah as Saiyads from Pirs, a title interpreted as a formal appointment by the Imam. Most of the Saiyads who authored Ginans after the death of Imamshah, were either his descendants or those of Pir Hasan Kabirdin; there were a total of seventeen Saiyads. The term Saiyad was also used to refer to Sufi masters and notable theologians.
Imam-Begum, the last in the line of the Saiyads who composed Ginans, and the only known female composer, spent most of her life in or near Bombay (now Mumbai), but is believed to have died in Karachi sometime during the late nineteenth century or the beginning of the twentieth, although very little is know about her life. Imam-Begum, who composed a small number of Ginans of great beauty, was an accomplished player of the fiddle (sarangi) and sang her compositions to the accompaniment of this instrument.
Pir Hasan Kabirdin, a son of Pir Sadr al-Din, lived in the fifteenth century, spending most of his life in the town of Uchch, to the south of Multan in modern-day Pakistan. The tradition describes him as a man with a serious, forbearing outlook and great strength of character. He is reported to have been a holy man not just among his followers, but among … Continue reading Pir Hasan Kabirdin, son of Pir Sadr al-Din, is also regarded as Pir by some Sufis
On 30th November 2014, the Association for the Study of Ginans, led by Chairman Pyarali Jiwa, hosted a seminar at Manchester with resounding success. Participants came from Eastbourne & Hastings, Birmingham, Bolton, Burnley, Leicester, Leeds-Bradford, Manchester, Stoke-on-Trent, and members of the Board from London.
The programme consisted of speakers on Ginans: Anis Attenborough, Karim Andani, and Karima Bata, a Gujarati workshop by Nizar Mawani, and a demonstration of the Ginan Library by Pyarali Jiwa. After lunch, Ginans and Qasidas were beautifully rendered by talented young and not-so-young recitors and included some items with music. The audience thoroughly enjoyed the memorable event.
Navine Jafferali and the staff of Birch Hotel provided the venue and all the meals and refreshments.
We are grateful to local members who assisted with organising the event: Nadia Valliani, Shamim Kooverjee, Masuma Jessani, Karim Andani, Salma Ladha, photographer Mohamed Mitha, Farid Meghji who helped with the PA system.
The next Ginan seminars will be in London and Paris in 2015 followed by a conference at the University of Mumbai in India later in the year.
Ginans are a vast collection consisting of several hundred Ginans which have been a central part of the religious life of the Nizari Ismaili community of the Indian Subcontinent that today resides in many countries around the world. The Nizari Ismailis of the Indian Subcontinent used the term to designate a special type of poetic composition: a composition whose authorship is attributed to Ismaili Pirs … Continue reading Pir Shams composed Ginans whose lyrics were set to dance
The term ‘ginan’ is derived from the Sanskrit jnana, meaning contemplative knowledge. Ginans are a vast collection consisting of several hundred Ginans which have been a central part of the religious life of the Nizari Ismaili community of the Indian Subcontinent that today resides in many countries around the world. The Nizari Ismailis of the Indian Subcontinent used the term to designate a special type … Continue reading Ginans: composed in various languages, recorded in Khojki script to preserve them
Ginan in Raag Mishra Tilak Kamod, which is usually sung in the evening Jamil Assani plays harmonium and sings in his own style. Jamil learned harmonium and singing from well known music director Ustad Karim Shabuddin in Karachi, Pakistan. Later he joined Nizar Lalani’s orchestra. He has performed on Pakistani television and radio. Jamil currently lives in Los Angeles and performs at many private and … Continue reading Jamil Assani in Vancouver: Aaj Raaj Mubarak