Faiz Ahmed Faiz might not be as terribly needed yesterday as today. A country where strongmen like Sulman Taseer can be assassinated for their unconventional religious views, can we expect from it to treat its “weakmen” fairly for similar views?
Faiz was the voice of weak and poor. He was the poet determined to observe the world in an unconventional way. After all he wasn’t a conformist, but a progressive to his back bone!
Neither was Faiz’s ‘God’ a classical God residing on sky like a Saudi Monarch damn caring what his people demand from him, nor was his ‘Mosque’ a brick and stone building surrounding bearded hooligans who resemble more to Abu Jahal than to Mohammad (P.B.U.H) in their deeds!
His ‘God’ was the God of Bulleh Shah. His God was the God of Mansoor Hallaj. His God was the God of Bhagat Kabir. His God was the God of Kim-il Sung! His ‘God’ was the God residing in mankind, which includes you and me and all of us or as Kim said ‘People Are My God’. In his famous poem, “Hum Dekhain Gey”, sung by Iqbal Bano during the era when Pakistan was experiencing the revolutionary waves of 20th century, he said:
“Bas Naam Rahey Ga Allah Ka
Jo Ghayeb Bhi Hai Haazir Bhi
Jo Nazir Bhi Hai Manzir Bhi
Uthay Ga Ana Al-Haq Ka Naara
Jo Main Bhi Hun Aur Tum Bhi Ho
Aur Raj Karey Gi Khalq-E-Khuda
Jo Main Bhi Hun Aur Tum Bhi Ho”
(Then only God’s name shall remain Who is both absent and present Who is both the viewer and the view
When the anthem of “Ana Al-Haq” shall be raised Who I am and you are as well And the people of God will reign)
Here he used the term “Ana Al-Haq” quite unconventionally. Here it serves as a slogan equivalent to “All Power to Soviets!” Here it is a war mantra to overthrow the capitalist-imperialist authorities and to throw out their ‘idols’ from the ‘Land of God’!
His ‘Mosque’ was the workers’ paradise, the Land of God, free from exploitation, ignorance, injustice and terrorism, built from the bricks of universal brotherhood, sovereignty and revolutionary consciousness.
“Maekhana Salamat Hai To Hum Surkhi-E-Mae Sey Tazzeen-E-Dar-O-Baam-E-Haram Karatay Rahen Gey”
(As far as wine-house is stable, from redness of wine;
We would keep decorating door and roof of Haram)
Faiz died on November 20, 1984 in Lahore, Punjab (Pakistan) at the age of 73 but he is living through his revolutionary, progressive and timeless ideas.
Saad Ahmed Javed is a Lahore-based freelance contributor and a social activist, who graduated with a science degree from the Punjab University, Lahore and is currently pursuing his Masters in Business Administration from UET Lahore. He is deeply interested in carrying out
humanitarian and welfare endeavors for the betterment of oppressed ones of the society. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org