Write up on "Republic of Rumi"

By Atteqa Thaver Malik
 
The title Republic of Rumi evokes various images and indeed many themes are explored in this book full of poetry.One of them is the relationship between Maulana Rumis philosophy and the work of muslim philosopher Dr. Allama Iqbal.The author,Khurram Shafique, a Pakistani historian and scholar, works from the premise that the order present in Iqbals kalam is not accidental but was very specifically designed by him. A large number of his verses were not meant for the time he wrote them in but for the future.Could we infer this from the last lines of Iqbal's Allahbad address in 1930?
"I do not mystify anybody when I say that things in India are not what they appear to be. The meaning of this, however, will dawn upon you only when you have achieved a real collective ego to look at them"

This is a new approach to Iqbal Studies, a positive one for those pondering over the future of Muslims these days. In his book
the Republic of Rumi, Khurram Shafique has constructed a garden of poetry, to enter which you have to first give up all preconceptions.
 
 

Then you enter the garden in search of Joseph, the concept.
You go through the different stages of the garden to understand yourself, the world and the general order of the universe.It is an abstract book of poetry which is at the same time mind boggling and beautiful. It was only after attending workshops on the book conducted by Khurram himself was I able to grasp even a little of the order and hidden meanings in the various chapters. Connections with Rumi, the work of Dr. Allama Iqbal and even the Holy Quran are sewn effortlessly into the text . The words of Surah Yusuf  appear in the final pages to answer many of the riddles that were presented during the journey.

The structure of the garden in Republic of Rumi is based on a pattern extrapolated from Iqbals work that suggests

there are 7 stages that you can use when trying to understand yourself,
there are 5 wisdoms that you use when trying to understand the outside world
and to get a general overview of things you would apply 9 questions

A blog by the same name also explores in detail concepts brought forward from the book and the philosophy behind Pakistan.
http://republicofrumi.blogspot.com/2009/08/why-rumi.html


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