Love is My Religion (rendition of Urdu verse by Nawob Gudri Shah Baba)

O Saki only from your  presence the  tavern thrives
The wine cup from you alone conviviality derives

All eyes rest on you and in every heart you live,
Laying down their heads, their life to you they give.

A stranger to this world and to its religion,
Is the love drunk lunatic in his intoxication

O Saki! Into my cup the tavern’s contents empty,
For a long, long time your lover has been so thirsty

The hearts of Infidel and believer alike desire only you,
The Kaaba purpose and the life of the temple are  you,

There is only longing in this helpless one’s heart,
To this indigent some kind offering on your part!

I am dust on Khawajas threshold and at Usman’s door,
Love is my entire religion, drunkenness my way for sure,

Khawaja’s Khadim I am, and Usman’s slave too,
In this princely garb see, a faqir shines through.


Dil ki Ibadat (rendition of Urdu verse by Nawob Gudri Shah Baba)

The Heart of Worship

Thanks be to God that in Love my heart made that ascent.
My prostrations, up to someone’s footprint they went,

No other acts of devotion with Love can be compared,
Only the lunatic lover’s heart for this worship is prepared.

The Creator of eternal beauty, can anyone ever reach?
But the madness of divine love can everywhere reach.

Try as they may no one can destroy this, my destiny,
Because Khawaja’s eyes smile on it, as a mercy to me.

O Khadim, till the Day of Judgement this love-drunk state is;
The wine the Wine-master serves, the effect permanent it is.

O Khadim, why not feel proud of the high fortune that’s bestowed,
When  it is eternal prostration at Khawaja’s door, that’s bestowed.


(we are grateful to Mr Wajid of Delhi for his original prose  translation of the verses above, and to advice on the original provided by
Farhana Banu Khan Morris).


Amir Khusrow (d. 1325) The disciple of Nizamuddin Awlia, opens his Diwaan with these
magnificent lines:

The cloud rains, and I am separated from the Friend.
How can my heart be separated from the Friend on such a day?
The cloud, the rain, I - and the Friend taken away.
I am alone, crying, the cloud is alone and the Friend is alone.
Greenery, newly-sprouted, joyful air, a green garden.
The nightingale, disgraced, remains separated from the rosegarden.
O, what are You doing to me, with the root of every hair
Of Your tresses, bound together?
I am enchained by being tied up, and all of a sudden, alone…


Abr mibaarad-o man mishawam yaar jodaa
Chun konam del bechonin ruz ze deldaar jodaa
Abr-o baran-o man-o yaar setaada budaa’
Man jodaa keria konaan, abr jodaa, yaar jodaa
Sabza naw-khiz-o hawaa khorram-o bostaan-e sarsabz
Bolbol-e-ruye-siyah maanda ze golzaar jodaa
Ay maraa dar tahe har mui ze zolfat-e bandi
Che koni band ze bandam hama yakbaar jodaa.

The Chishti Sufi Mas’ud-e-Bakk (d. 1387) whose real name was Sher Khan, wrote the following
quatrain:

If outside your own self you would go,
Into the veil of unity you would go.
And if you would go beyond the why and when,
Leaving yourself, into the without why and when you would go.

Gar az khodiye khwish berun aa’i to
Dar pardaye tawhid darun aa’i to
Var az rosh-e chun o cheraa bargozari
Az khod shode bi cheraa o chun aa’i to


The following has been received from Hz. Mohammed Siraj of Holland who writes:
The [following] Persian text has been transcribed and translated by me. I've taken them from a book called
"Rubaiyat-e Abu Sa'id Abu'l-Khair, Khayyam, Baba Taher"; Naheed Publ., Tehran; 1378.


Abu Sa’id Abu’l-Khayr writes:

If I am travelling, my Friend in this travel is You.
If I am at home, my Companion at home is You.
In short, wherever I am and wherever I travel
I am thinking of no one except of only You.

Gar dar safaram toi rafiq-e safaram
Var dar hazaram toi anis-e hazaram
Al-qisse be har kojaa ke baashad gozaram
Joz to nabud hichkasi dar nazaram


Get up in the night as lovers disclose their secrets at night,
Sit near to the door of the Friend and to His roof take flight;
Wherever there is a door, it is closed at night,
Except for the door of the Friend, which is open at night.

Shab khiz keh ‘aasheqaan ba shab raaz konand
Gird-e dar o baam-e dust parwaaz konand
Har jaa keh dari bud ba shab dar bandand
Ella dar-e dust raa keh shab baaz konand

translated and contributed by Mohammed Siraj Elschot


Poet's Corner

Section Four

Translations & Transliterations
from the 'old masters'.