Thursday, August 11, 2005

Shah Hussain 

Imagine the suffocation that can prevail in a religious society and the audacity with which people view any transgression of the moral or religious law.After imagining this suffocation and repression think about a person who has resolved to act against the morality and religious dogmatism and yet has registered himself as a great champion of the people. Shah Hussain was one such great religious personality who created new values in the society and challenged the older ones.Shah Hussain was a saint who lived during the sixteenth century in Panjab .Panjab is a province which is divided between India and Pakistan and both these countries have parts of this province as their territories. The word Panjab is formed with two words,'Panj' meaning 'five' and 'Aaab' , meaning water. Thus Panjab is the land of five rivers , Ravi, Jehlem ,Satluj, Beas and Chenab of which the western part lies in Pakistan and eastern part is in India.Lahore has remained the greatest city of Panjab for more than a thousand years and these days this historical city is in Pakistan.It is the privilege of this great city that it has produced all time great celebreties and creative people.One such person was the mystic poet Shah Hussain who was acknowledged ,loved and appreciated by the people of Panjab as a very liberal and freedom loving person.Shah Hussain's tomb is in Baghbanpura, Lahore and people celebrate his anniversary each year during the month of March.Around 5,00,000 people participate in this colourful activity.Shah Hussain was a muslim , but he transcended all religious differences.He was in love with a Hindu boy Madhu Lal and his relationship with Madu Lal was so strong and close that people remembered him with the name 'Madhu Lal Hussain'.Since , homo sexuality was not socially acceptable , therefore , Shah Hussain was severely criticized for loving Madhu Lal and having an intimate relationship with him.Madhu Lal was summoned to the court by the Great Mughal emperor Akber. When Shah Hussain reached there he had a beaker of wine in his hands and he was clean shaved too.Since to drink alcohol is strictly prohibited in Islam therefore many people considered this act as an offence against Shariyah(The Islamic Law) and asked Akber to inquire in to this matter.When Akber asked Shah Hussain to show his beaker to him , he found,to his astonishment, that there was milk in it and no wine was there.Moreover , to grow a beared is necessary for a muslim , but Shah Hussain was clean shaven and people accused him for not having a beared.When people pointed out towards this fact , a beared appered on the face of the great mystic and those who were accusing him merely out of jealousy were defeated.This was the only miracle that people attribute with him.Shah Hussain was a great lover of humanity.For him differences were meaning less and he never differentiated people on the basis of religious or ethnic grounds.Shah Hussain wrote many verses.The form of poetry that he used was termed as Kafi .Kafi, is a form of lyric poetry that is generally sung by the folk singers all around the provinces of Punjab and Sindh.His poetry is full of love and wisdom and propagates a happy and joyful wisdom.He loved intoxication and was known for using Cannabis and Alcohol in abundance.Despite all these transgressions he was given the title of the greatest mystic of all times and his religious authority was never successfully challenged or questioned.Dara Shakoh, the great son of Mughal emperor Shah Jehan and brother of Mughal emperor Aurangzeb Alamgir, was a great admirer of Shah Hussain and considered Shah Hussain as his spiritual guide and teacher.Dara Shakoh was among those muslims of the sub continient who were loved by people of all religions and creeds because of their love for humanity and liberalism.

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