I am not the Tsarnaevs – by Wajahat Ali

From Salon:


So, the Boston bombing suspects, Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, are Muslim.

When the news broke, snarky Twitter trolls – are there any other kind? – launched the rhetorical gauntlet of questions, those predictably designed to confirm a biased, flawed narrative that casts “Islam” as the quintessential anti-American antagonist in the endless “War on Terror.”

First, I was asked how I felt knowing “Islam” was behind the bombing?

I felt the same way I did before the suspects were identified: devastated and saddened at the needless loss of life and the chaos that paralyzed a nation for a week. I prayed that the capture of the alleged suspects brings much needed peace and catharsis to the victims, their families and the entire city of Boston.

As far as Islam goes, I’ve never met Islam.

Islam has never asked me out on a date.

If it did, one day it might take me to eat Hyderabadi biryani followed by chai and kheer as dessert. Another night I might be treated to fried chicken, collard greens and bean pies. Islam might even try to make a move at the end of the night or abstain from all physical relations until marriage. Islam might toast me with a glass of champagne or order an overpriced, non-alcoholic mojito. Islam might ask me to pray the late-night Isha prayer or skip ritual acts of worship altogether and go to the local club to holler at some women (or men, or both). Islam might listen to Jay-Z before playing Nusrat or renounce music considering it haram and recite Quran instead. In fact, Islam might want to kick me to the curb for being a heathen because I don’t sport a beard, or label me a fundamentalist for fasting during Ramadan and not eating ham sandwiches.

Islam doesn’t speak – Muslims do.

The Tsarnaev brothers’ criminal and perverse actions do not speak for me or the overwhelming majority of Muslims. I am not compelled to apologize for them or explain their actions. Muslims are not a monolithic, Borg-like collective, who possess a shared consciousness, specializing in counterterrorism knowledge with a telepathic understanding of the perverse mind-set of radicals in their “community.” This is like asking Republican Christians to apologize for Timothy McVeigh or expecting young white males to explain why individuals like Adam Lanza, Jared Loughner and James Holmes used assault rifles to unleash terror on innocent civilians.

Before brothers Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev were even identified as the Boston bombing suspects, the media announced the usual villains: a “dark-skinned suspect,” a 21-year-old Saudi “jihadi” whose only crime was to run away from a violent explosion, and a 17-year-old Moroccan high school track star who attended the marathon carrying a bag. There was also a clarion call from conservative columnist (and sometime Fox News guest) Erik Rush to murder all Muslims.

We now know the suspected brothers were born in Kyrgyzstan, are ethnically Chechen, and lived in America for several years. They are literally Caucasian since their family originates from the northern Caucasus region. Neither of them were dark-skinned, “Saudi,” bearded or brandished a fiery red trident or horns on their head.

The profile of these two brothers highlights the conclusions of the British Intelligence Agency MI5 report that states Muslim terrorists in the West “are a diverse collection of individuals, fitting no single demographic profile, nor do they all follow a typical pathway to violent extremism.” In the words of Olivier Roy, a French scholar on Islamic societies, “the process of violent radicalization has little to do with religious practice.” In fact, most Islamic fundamentalists are “religious novices” and “there is evidence that a well-established religious identity actually protects against violent radicalization.” A MAPOS study found that Muslims’ religiosity curbs anti-American extremism and “that mosques and religiosity are associated with high levels of civic engagement and support for the American political system.”

Undeterred, the Twitter tribunal persisted and asked why Muslims do not renounce and actively discourage violent extremism? Well, 40 percent of all extremist plots in America were thwarted as a result of Muslim American help. Also, Muslim Americans continue to aid law enforcement, are more likely to reject violence than any other U.S. religious community, and overwhelmingly renounce the extremist ideologies of al-Qaida. A Muslim American community in Virginia proactively tipped off the FBI and turned in five radicalized youths. A Senegalese Muslim vendor was the first to mention the burning car bomb in New York’s Times Square incompetently engineered by Faisal Shahzad.  Muslims in Orange County received a restraining order against a mosque attendee who advocated jihad against America. Ironically, he turned out to be a mosque crawler: Craigh Monteilh, an FBI informant, who said he was paid to infiltrate the local community and entrap potential radicals.

Just three months ago, Tamerlan was kicked out during Friday prayer at the Islamic Society of Boston Culture Center for acting “crazy” by standing up and shouting at the imam whose sermon praised Martin Luther King Jr. as an example worth emulating. U.S. imams are currentlydebating whether to hold Islamic funeral services for Tamleran. “This is a person who deliberately killed people. There is no room for him as a Muslim. He already left the fold of Islam by doing that,” says one Boston imam.

Last Monday, before the brothers’ capture, a few friends and I wondered what the reaction would be if the suspect was a white Muslim. I often joke with my white Muslim friends that they are like the vampire superhero Blade, known as the “Daywalker,” gifted with “all of our strengths and none of our weaknesses.” As long as they hide their Muslimyness, their Whiteness serves as a protective cloak that mainstreams them as “American” shielding them from public interrogations regarding their loyalty and “otherness.”

The emotional press conference with Ruslan Tsarni, the suspects’ estranged uncle, proved that the privileges of Whiteness are lost when the individual is Muslim or born abroad. We all empathized with the uncle who said the suspects brought “shame” to his family. He volunteered to passionately defend his ethnicity, religion and patriotism in front of a sensationalistic court of public opinion for the alleged misdeeds of two family members, whom he called “losers” and not deserving to live on Earth. A reporter then asked, “What do you think of America?” – a question never posed to family members of white criminals. Tsarni passed the loyalty test by responding, “I respect this country. I love this country.”

Muslim mass murderers excluded from “Whiteness” are usually labeled “terrorist” as opposed to being categorized as “lone wolf,” “lone radical/gunman ” or “deeply disturbed.” The latter applies to white men, such as mass murderers Wade Page, Jared Loughner, Adam Lanza, James Holmes and Anders Breivik.

This raises the legitimate question: What’s the difference between the “terrorism” of the Tsarnaev brothers and the “lone radical” violence of white supremacist Wade Page, who shot and killed six Sikh Americans at their temple? What are the definitions and standards for “terrorism”? Who decides?

Apparently, it’s new media, which covered the police hunt for the brothers as a “Choose Your Own Adventure” novel scripted by amateur Hardy Boys and “CSI” aficionados. Overnight, the world witnessed the birth of a great career opportunity for self-proclaimed experts on Chechnya, jihad, radicalization and counterterrorism, who emerged instantly using Google and Wikipedia to obtain their dubious scholarship.

This includes Chuck Woolery, self-identified conservative and a relic of ’80s game shows, who displayed brilliant, evidence-based, sociological insights with this helpful tweet: “Muslims can’t seem to live in peace with anyone. Even each other. FACT.” He continued his love connections with Muslims by adding, “All Muslims are not terrorists. Most, if not all terrorists are Muslims. Please dispute that.”

Sure, Chuck, I will. In the U.S., 56 percent of terrorist attacks and plots have been perpetrated by right-wing extremists, 30 percent by eco-terrorists and 12 percent by Islamic extremists. The Southern Poverty Law Center recently reported the highest number of extremist hate groups ever recorded in U.S. history, with the sharp rise attributed to massive growths in white supremacist, anti-immigrant and radical anti-government groups. Anti-Muslim hate groups have also increased by 300 percent.

No one denies that radicalized Muslim violence is a problem, as evidenced by Nidal Hassan Malik, the unhinged Army major who killed 13 soldiers at Fort Hood and injured 31, and Faisal Shahzad, the failed Times Square bomber.

When minority groups highlight double standards in language, labeling, media representation and government prosecution, we are accused of whining and espousing victimhood. However, Mr. Woolery, a privileged white male, implies America is still more oppressive to white, Christian Republicans: “If these guys [Boston bombing suspects] were white southern, christian, conservative, tea partiers we would know what they had for breakfast 3 yrs ago on May 16th.”

That explains why Daryl Johnson, a former counterterrorism expert for the government, submitted a study on the rise and danger of right-wing extremists and white supremacists only to be pressured, criticized, repudiated and ultimately sidelined by conservative members of Congress and the Department of Homeland Security.

However, Republican U.S. Rep. Peter King exploited the Boston tragedy to justify his five congressional hearings that focused solely on the rise of radicalization in Muslim communities. Last week, he rejected “political correctness” and pushed for “increased surveillance” of Muslim communities despite Tamerlan Tsarnaev having already been interviewed and released by the FBI in 2011. Furthermore, King’s inflammatory hearings were criticized by law enforcement officials and counterterrorism professionals as being misguided, ineffective and potentially dangerous. Apparently all acts of terror are not equal to Mr. King in light of his past rationalization and defense of IRA terrorism.

Republican Rep. Steve King also exploited the tragedy to delay immigration reform, referencing the national origin of the bombing suspects. If King really cares about national security, then he should insist on profiling and deporting several angry, white males in light of numerous recent shooting massacres.

There are significant casualties in moments of national panic and tragedy. As history has reflected, people would sacrifice the rights and civil liberties of minorities, and in turn their own freedoms, for the illusion of safety. We don’t need more policing, we need effective and intelligent policing that does not automatically transform millions of its Muslim citizens into perpetual suspects.

This includes dangerous and ineffective racial and religious profiling and wasteful and broad surveillance and spying of innocent Muslim communities by the NYPD. In addition, there is now a 50 percent increase in hate crimes against Muslims, nationwide protests against mosques, and introduction of anti-Shariah bills to 31 states, which are a solution in search of a problem.

The casualties also wear a human face, ones that are often not “Muslim.” The first post 9/11 hate murder was of Balbir Singh Sohdi, a Sikh American, whom the murderer chose because he was “dark-skinned, bearded and wore a turban.” This past week a Bangladeshi man was beaten up by Latino men outside a Bronx Applebee’s restaurant. In Massachusetts, a man shouted, “F_ you Muslims! You are terrorists! I hate you! You are involved in the Boston explosions! F_ you!” to a Palestinian American woman. Also, new media is to law enforcement investigations what Scooby Doo’s Mystery Inc. is to detective work: messy, ad hoc, prone to mistakes, but sometimes reliable and effective. Like so many others, I retweeted unverified information by Reddit and news agencies falsely identifying  missing Brown student Sunil Tripathi as a suspect. I sincerely apologize to him and his family, who are still searching for Sunil and have launched a new Facebook page requesting supporters to write messages of encouragement.

The Boston Bombing tragedy highlights our intense obsession to know a suspect’s ethnicity, religion and “Americanness” to profile and cast them in our reductive but reliable War on Terror narrative. The resulting collateral damage, aside from thousands killed, includes hysteria, scapegoating and the voluntary exchange of our liberties and freedoms for the transient feeling of safety.

However, the tragedy affords a nation of many faiths and ethnicities an opportunity to pen a new narrative that recasts its diverse citizens as fellow protagonists committed toward healing and mutual understanding. Our actions must live up to the hopes and opinion Uncle Ruslan has of America, his emigrated homeland:

“This country, which gives chance to everybody else to be treated as a human being. That’s what I feel about this country.”

Wajahat Ali is the award winning playwright of “The Domestic Crusaders,” one of the first major plays about the American Muslim experience published by Mcsweeney’s. He is the lead author of the investigative report “Fear Inc.: The Roots of the Islamophobia Network in America” produced by Center for American Progress. He is currently working on a TV pilot with author Dave Eggers about an American Muslim cop. He is writing his first movie screenplay with filmmaker Joshua Seftel (“War Inc.”).  He blogs at GOATMILK.

I’m Muslim, and I hate terrorism – Dean Obeidallah

From CNN :


Editor’s note: Dean Obeidallah, a former attorney, is a political comedian and frequent commentator on various TV networks including CNN. He is the co-director of the upcoming documentary “The Muslims Are Coming!” and co-host of a new CNN podcast “The Big Three” that looks at the top three stories of the week. Follow him on Twitter @deanofcomedy.

(CNN) — I’m an American-Muslim and I despise Islamic terrorists. In fact, despise is not even a strong enough word to convey my true feelings about those who kill innocent people in the name of Islam. I hate them with every fiber of my being.

I’m not going to tell you, “Islam is a religion of peace.” Nor will I tell you that Islam is a religion of violence. What I will say is that Islam is a religion that, like Christianity and Judaism, is intended to bring you closer to God. And sadly we have seen people use the name of each of these Abrahamic faiths to wage and justify violence.

The unique problem for Muslims is that our faith is being increasingly defined by the actions of a tiny group of morally bankrupt terrorists. Just to be clear: The people who commit violence in the name of Islam are not Muslims, they are murderers. Their true religion is hatred and inhumanity.

The only people terrorists speak for are themselves and the others involved in their despicable plot. They do not represent me, my family or any other Muslim I know. And believe me, I know a lot of Muslims.

We hate these terrorists more than non-Muslims do. How can I say that? Because they harm innocent people in the name of our religion and consequently we suffer a backlash because of their acts. It can be anything from a spike in hate crimes to people viewing Muslims as less than fully American because of our faith. We are the ones called to answer for the sins of people we detest.

Since the Boston bombing has renewed for some concerns about Muslims, I wanted to candidly answer three questions I have been asked repeatedly over the years:

1. Why do some Muslims commit terrorism?

I’m not a terrorism expert but I will share the view of those I have spoken to in the Muslim community. There can be no doubt that some Muslims wrongly believe that their terrorist act is sanctioned by Islam. But to us their true motivation is not religious, but rather political.

Islam is simply used by terrorists as a way to recruit support.They then engage in terrorism to bring attention to their grievances or to achieve their political agenda, just as other terror groups have done in the past.

The recent statement of the Islamic militant group in the Caucasus region denying involvement in the Boston bombing makes this very point. They expressly tell us that they have a specific political agenda: “The Caucasian Mujahideen are not fighting against the United States of America. We are at war with Russia, which is not only responsible for the occupation of the Caucasus, but also for heinous crimes against Muslims.”

2. Why don’t Muslims denounce terrorism?

Just to be clear: American Muslims and U.S. Muslim organizations have unequivocally denounced terror attacks. Not just once, but over and over.

But that doesn’t matter if you haven’t heard it. And despite our best efforts to get this message out there, what attracts more media attention: A Muslim denouncing terrorism or footage of an explosion?

Does that mean that we will stop denouncing terrorism? Of course not. But we will have to be more creative in our efforts to attract media coverage to make this point to our fellow Americans.

3. Why don’t Muslims stop blowing stuff up?

I have never blown up anything, except maybe a model toy tank when I was a kid. Nor has any other Muslims I’ve met in person or even on Facebook. But still we are charged by many with the task of policing a religion of more than a billion people.

Although this may not change some people’s perception, statistically Muslims have not been the ones involved in most terror plots in the United States. In fact, since 1995, 88% of the domestic terrorist plots have been by right-wing groups, ecoterrorists and anarchists, according to an analysis by the Center for American Progress. But still, 12% were Muslims.

Believe me, we wish that number were zero. But here’s the brutal truth: Neither law enforcement nor the American Muslim community can stop every radical or criminal who happens to be Muslim. A “lone wolf” can devise his or her evil plan in secret, making detection almost impossible.

But we are trying. As L.A. County Sheriff Lee Baca testified before Congress in 2011, seven of the past 10 al Qaeda plots in the United States were foiled by tips from the American Muslim community.

And just this past Sunday, NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly told CNN’s Fareed Zakaria that his department has a strong working relationship with the New York City Muslim community.

And it’s not only American-Muslims working with law enforcement to stop radicals, but Canadians as well. Just this week we saw an Islamic terror plot prevented because of tips from the Canadian-Muslim community to law enforcement

It is my hope that in time, Muslims will not be defined to my fellow Americans by the handful of terrorists, but by the millions of others who are involved in all aspects of American life. Well-known American Muslims range from former NBA star Shaquille O’Neal, TV personality Dr. Oz, U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison to police officers, teachers, judges, deli workers, cab drivers and the millions of American Muslims in between.

These people, not the terrorists, are the true Muslims.

Boston Runner: I’ll run until my body can’t take it anymore

From ICNA:
In an interview with ICNA.org, Jalon Fowler, a Muslim participant of the Boston Marathon relates her experience.

I have always dreamed of running the Boston Marathon; I have grown up seeing others in the Boston area train and prepare for the marathon. Three years ago, I finally took the plunge and joined my company’s Marathon Training Program. I also very much wanted to give back to the community and, therefore, became a charity runner for the Boys & Girls Club of Boston and the Ron Burton Training Village. Both organizations serve inner city and under-served youth.

The Challenge
I trained for over six months for this race. I did a lot of running with my company’s Employee Training Program, local running groups and with friends. We ran through rain, wind and snow. We also did many 5 am runs, two half marathon races and several 16, 18 and 20 mile runs. I kept up with the training through busy times at work, sick kids and other life events. I remained committed because training for a marathon is simply something you put your heart and soul and believe that you get out of it what you put into it.

Charity, helping others, and being the best emotional, spiritual and physical person are major parts of being a Muslim. The marathon allowed me to strive towards all of these goals.

The Experience
This was my third Boston Marathon and I was on pace for my best finish to-date. However, the dream ended at mile 21 when the race was shut down due to explosions at the finish line. At this point, we were all quickly ushered off the course and told that, in addition to the finish line explosions, there were several suspicious packages being investigated. We were all heartbroken, devastated and scared by this news. During this time, we hugged each other and shared cell phones to contact loved ones. Thankfully, my husband and two young children were with me at mile 21. Since our car was close by, we drove a fellow stranded runner home. Unfortunately, my other family members were waiting for me at the finish line when the explosions happened and had to run for safety.

I am heartbroken, that so many innocent people were hurt. This beautiful day was scarred by this tragedy. I am thankful that my family was safe.

My Message
I put my heart and soul into training and raising money for The Boys and Clubs of Boston and The Ron Burton Training Villageand can’t believe it ended in such a tragic way. I love Boston. I love the Boston running community. I can’t wait to proudly run these streets again. I will run the Boston Marathon until my body cannot take it anymore, God willing, for those that cannot.

I pray that whoever is responsible for these horrific acts are brought to justice. It was no doubt an act of cowardice and evil.

Jalon Fowler lives near Boston with her husband and 3 children.

© The Islamic Circle of North America- ICNA.org

Love For Your Brother What You Love For Yourself

On the authority of Abi Hamza Anas bin Malik, the servant of the messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) from the prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) who said: “None of you [truly] believes until he loves for his brother what he loves for himself.


It’s an interesting concept, to love for one’s brother what one loves for themselves.  It would be anathema to the fictional character of Gordon Gecko, to whom is attributed the phrase “greed is good.”  But it is the very same type of greed that Wall Street vampires espoused that caused the global economy to spiral out of control and arguably uncountable lives to be lost in wars over resources.

In our competitive world, many are stuck in a state of mind that they should have better than others, for this will somehow give them an edge.  The Facebook era has created a “me, me, me” society where people constantly feel the need to big themselves up,  To give themselves kudos or show how full their life is.  Sharing photos with friends and family is one thing – but too much can lead to being egotism and stiffness of the soul… and that’s a hard disease to fix.

I grew up loving basketball.  In basketball it was exciting to watch players like Michael Jordan soar over everybody else and slam dunk, or to see Larry Bird shoot a circus shot from beyond the 3-point line or behind the backboard.  It was always the most exhilarating for me, however, to watch Magic Johnson run a fast break and do a no-look pass to his teammate for the easy layup or dunk.  Its a thing of beauty to watch a team work together, to see all the parts of a machine work effectively together.  Its much more exciting than watching one guy take all the shots while his teammates stagnate and wait to dish it off to the ball hog again.  To dish it off meant that one would take the assist over the shot… that they wanted their teammate to shine as much as they wanted it themselves, or even more so.  It means, to that individual, the team is greater than the individual.

This is a reminder to everyone, and I’m placing myself at the forefront.  Learn to not always make everything a competition.  If someone else is doing well, encourage it.  If someone else needs help, help if you can.  You will get as good as you give.  The blessings and rewards are spiritual… and Allah is Most Kareem (Generous and Benevolent).  Peace.

To read more on the above hadith, please click here.


The Prophet’s Good Humor

attitudeThe world we live is not a piece of cake.  Challenges in our lives, whether at work, school or home, respectively, can sometimes burden us or weigh us down.  Enhancing one’s spiritual and physical health help, but just as important is having a healthy sense of humor about things that may occur in our lives.  The ability to laugh things off and laugh at ourselves is important.   This post will narrate a humorous event from the life of the Prophet Muhammad (Peace and Blessings of Allah Upon Him).

One of the beloved companions of the Prophet Muhammad (Peace and Blessings of Allah Upon Him) was Al-Nuayman ibn Amr (May Allah be pleased with him).  You can read more about Al-Nuayman ibn Amr here and here.  Nuayman was a decorated veteran of the Battle of Badr, Uhud, and Khandaq, among other military engagements, yet retained a light sense of humor about him and enjoyed playing practical jokes on his friends.

As stated on Wikipedia:

He belonged to the Banu an-Najjar of Madinah and he was among the early Muslims of the city. He was one of those who pledged allegiance to the Prophet at the Second Pledge of Aqabah. He established links with the Quraysh when he married the sister of Abdur Rahman ibn Awl and later Umm Kulthum the daughter of Uqbah ibn Mu’ayt. She had obtained a divorce from her husband az-Zubayr ibn al-Awwam on account of his harshness and severity.

Once an-Nuayman went to the suq and saw some food being sold which appeared to be tasty and delightful. He ordered some and sent it to the Prophet as if it were a gift from him. The Prophet was delighted with the food and he and his family ate of it. The vendor of the food then came to an-Nuayman to collect the price of it and an-Nuayman said to him: “Go to the Messenger of God it was for him. He and his family ate it.”

The vendor went to the Prophet who in turn asked an-Nuayman: “Didn’t you give it to me?” “Yes,” said an-Nuayman. “I thought you would like it and I wanted you to eat some of it so I had it presented to you. But I don’t have any dirhams to pay the vendor for it. So, pay, O Messenger of God!”

The Prophet had a good laugh and so did his companions. The laugh was at his expense, literally, for he had to pay the price of the unsolicited gift. An-Nuayman felt that two benefits came out of the incident: the Prophet and his family ate food that they enjoyed and the Muslims had a good laugh.

This narration displays the blessed humor of the Prophet Muhammad (Peace and Blessings of Allah Upon Him) and his forebearing and generous spirit (al-haleem and al-kareem).

If it was someone other than the noble Prophet Muhammad (Peace and Blessings of Allah Upon Him), they would have most probably handled it differently.  Imagine someone sends you a delicious meal and tells you its a gift for you and your family.  You enjoy it, but afterwards are asked to pay a bill for what was supposedly a gift.  How would you handle it?  Would you get upset that someone played a trick on you?  Or would you handle it differently?

Many people would have reacted angrily, and probably have been right.  However, that is not how our beloved Prophet Muhammad (Peace and Blessings of Allah Upon Him) handled it.  When the Prophet Muhammad (Peace and Blessings of Allah Upon Him) found out from Nuayman (May Allah be pleased with him) that he “wanted [the Prophet Muhammad (Peace and Blessings of Allah Upon Him) to eat some of it … [but didn’t] have any dirhams to pay the vendor for it,” the Prophet (Peace and Blessings of Allah Upon Him) had what would be considered a wonderful sense of humor by any honest and objective standard.


Instead of getting upset, the Prophet (Peace and Blessings of Allah Upon Himresponded with laughter, good spirits and mirth.  He recognized that Nuayman was well-intentioned and was motivated out of love for the Prophet Muhammad (Peace and Blessings of Allah Upon Him).  The Prophet Muhammad (Peace and Blessings of Allah Upon Him) didn’t leave Nuayman empty, but full.

Muslims and non-Muslims alike can learn from the character of the Prophet Muhammad (Peace and Blessings of Allah Upon Him).  Its good to smile.  Its good to laugh at the appropriate times.  Its good to overlook the minor stuff, and in the grand scheme of life many issues we perceive as big problems are in actuality minor.  The Prophet Muhammad (Peace and Blessings of Allah Upon Himlaughed and smiled.  We should laugh and smile too.  It’s the Islamic tradition.


“Kabhi Ae Haqiqat e Muntazir” by Sir Muhammad Allama Iqbal

It is my honor to share with you a recording of my father, Muhammad Safdar, singing religious poetry by Sir Muhammad Allama Iqbal. The recording is from the late 1970s, and was on the occasion of the birthday of my brother, Nabile. It was recorded on tape.

You can read more about Sir Muhammad Allama Iqbal at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muhammad_Iqbal.

An english translation of “Kabhi Ae Haqiqat Ae Muntazir” can be found here.

(Bang-e-Dra-169) Kabhi Ae Haqiqat-e-Muntazir ! Nazar Aa Libas-e-Mijaaz Mein

Kabhi Ae Haqiqat-e-Muntazir! Nazar Aa Libas-e-Majaz Mein
Ke Hazar Sajde Tarap Rahe Hain Meri Jabeen-e-Niaz Mein

For once, O awaited Reality, reveal Yourself in a form material,
For a thousand prostrations are quivering eagerly in my submissive brow.

Tarb Ashnaye Kharosh Ho, Tu Nawa Hai Mehram-e-Gosh Ho
Woh Surood Kya Ke Chupa Huwa Ho Sakoot-e-Parda-e-Saaz Mein

Know the pleasure of tumult: thou art a tune consort with the ear!
What is that melody worth, which hides itself in the silent chords of the harp.

Tu Bacha Bacha Ke Na Rakh Isse, Tera Aaeena Hai Woh Aaeena
Ke Shikast Ho To Aziz Tar Hai Nigah-e-Aaeena Saaz Mein

Do not try to protect them, your mirror is the mirror
Which would be dearer in the Maker’s eye if they broken are

Dam-e-Tof Karmak-e-Shama Ne Ye Kaha Ke Woh Asar-e-Kuhan
Na Teri Hikayat-e-Souz Mein, Na Meri Hadees-e-Gudaz Mein

During circumambulation the moth exclaimed, “Those past effects
Neither in your story of pathos, nor in my tale of love are”

Na Kaheen Jahan Mein Aman Mili, Jo Aman Mili To Kahan Mili
Mere Jurm-e-Khana Kharab Ko Tere Ufuw-e-Banda Nawaz Mein

My dark misdeeds found no refuge in the wide world—
The only refuge they found was in Your Gracious Forgiveness

Na Woh Ishq Mein Raheen Garmiyaan, Na Woh Husn Mein Raheen Shaukiyan
Na Woh Ghaznavi Mein Tarap Rahi, Na Kham Hai Zulf-e-Ayaz Mein

Neither love has that warmth, nor beauty has that humour
Neither that restlessness in Ghaznavi nor those curls in the hair locks of Ayaz are,

Jo Mein Sar Basajda Huwa Kabhi To Zameen Se Ane Lagi Sada
Tera Dil To Hai Sanam Ashna, Tujhe Kya Mile Ga Namaz Mein

Even as I laid down my head in prostration a cry arose from the ground:
Your heart is in materialism, no rewards for your prayers are.

Thanks for viewing. May Allah bless you.