Message of Sufi poets can help check extremism, moot told
We have to cultivate love, harmony and universal brotherhood in society and there could be no better way than emulating the Sufi poets and their message of love and tolerance.
This was the consensus among speakers on the first day of the two-day seminar, titled, “The significance of Sufi poets in modern Pakistan”, held at the Federal Urdu University of Arts, Science, and Technology, under the joint aegis of Fuaast and the Higher Education Commission (HEC), on Tuesday.
Dr Inayat Hussain Laghari, Chairman, Department of Sindhi, Fuaast, said: “It should be our endeavour to cultivate love and harmony in society through the examples of Sufi poets and so it was decided to invite scholars of all four languages to talk to us on the ever-relevant message of love spread by the Sufi poets.”
Nawaz Ali Shouk, speaking on the occasion, said that the Sufis preached the supremacy of humanity and the prime importance of humankind, transcending caste, colour, or creed. He said that the Sufis taught that all mankind was one and humans one large family.
He said that while Namaz and Roza (fasting) were imperative to the maintenance and practice of one’s faith, just the two of them by themselves were not enough and had to be accompanied by deeds engendering love, tolerance, and compassion towards fellow humans.
He said that the Sufi poets seldom concurred with the clerical class because they thought that the approach of the latter towards virtue was very confined. He said that the Sufi poets advocated modesty and refraining from arrogance. He quoted the example of a Sufi saint who refused to accept a knife as a gift as his contention was that a knife was supposed to cut into two while he was there to join.
Dr Suleman D Muhammad bemoaned the wide gap between the Haves and the Have-Nots which, he said, was the gateway to corruption and power play characterising the world today. “Sufyat”, he said, was epitomised by love and sacrifice.
Dr Abdul Razaque Sabir, a scholar from Balochistan, said the people could learn a lot from the sayings of the Sufia-e-Karaam to restore peace to Karachi. He said that the Sufi poets preached not only love and brotherhood but also love for one’s moorings, his motherland. “All mayhem and bloodshed would cease in Karachi were we to adopt the teachings of the Sufia-e-Karaam.”
Seemi Naghman, Dean Faculty of Arts, Fuuast, said that Sufi poets were a people with a global perspective. Today, she said, there were bomb blasts, mass killings and bloodshed but those who preached the sublime aspects of the universe and about life were every bit there. She said the Sufi poets should be emulated.
She praised the radio which she said had been instrumental in spreading the sublime messages of Faiz Muhammad Baloch and Mai Bhagi in an era when TV was not there.
“National integration comes not from slogan-mongering but from clinging to the message of peace love, and harmony preached by the Sufi poets.”
Qamarul Haque, Registrar, Fuaast, said that religion was something really glorious and awesome and the sayings of Sufi poets were exactly in accordance with all religions.
Allahbachayo Aresir spoke of the poetry of Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai and his message of universal love.Samia Kazia spoke abut the first Sufi poet of Sindh, Shah Abdul Karim Shah.
Ramzan Bamari from Balochistan said that Sufi poets were above caste colour, or creed and narrated the legend of Samoon in Balochistan to illustrate the power of love and from just two individuals, how it can permeate society. He said that he saw the Sufi poets message in action all over Balochistan but said that he did not see it anywhere else in the country.
Dr Khurshid Abbasi, former head of the Sindhi Department, University of Karachi, in her discourse, talked at length about Sufi poet Qadir Bukhsh and his message.
Dr Abdul Aziz Sahir said that Sufiism was visible in each and every religion and not just one. He said that it was the common culmination of the noble teachings of all religions — not just one.
Dr Dur Muhammad Pathan said that the people of Sindh had always rejected aggression and that was because of their wholehearted adherence to Sufi philosophy. Kamal Jamro conducted the proceedings.