Saturday, November 21, 2009

"Would You Permit Me?"

I think this poem is a perfectly perfect representation of what Islam has come to mean, especially today and especially with the type of people who are accepted and authorized as our leaders and scholars.
It is written by Nizar Qabbani, a Syrian poet who died in 1998. His other poetry can be found at this link. God bless humanity as long as we have men like him existing and doing what they believe is a productive means for the liberation of every silenced heart, mind, and tongue.

In a country where thinkers are assassinated,
And writers are considered infidels
And books are burnt,
in societies that refuse the other,
and force silence on mouths and thoughts forbidden,
and to question is a sin,
I must beg your pardon, would you permit me?

Would you permit me to bring up my children as I want,
and not to [let you] dictate on me your whims and orders?

Would you permit me to teach my children
that the religion is first to God,
and not for religious leaders or scholars or people?

Would you permit me to teach my little one
that religion is about good manners,
good behaviour, good conduct, honesty and truthfulness,
before I teach her with which foot to enter the bathroom
or with which hand she should eat?

Would you permit me to teach my daughter
That God is about love, and she can dialogue with Him
And ask Him anything she wants,
Far away from the teachings of anyone?

Would you permit me not to mention the torture of the grave
to my children, who do not know about death yet?

Would you permit me to teach my daughter
The tenets of the religion and its culture and manners,
Before I force on her the ‘Hijab’?

Would you permit me to tell my young son that hurting people
And degrading them because of their nationality, colour or religion
Is considered a big sin by God?

Would you permit me to tell my daughter that
Revising her homework and paying attention to her learning
Is considered by God as more useful and important
Than learning by heart Ayahs from the Quran
Without knowing their meaning?

Would you permit me to teach my son
That following the footsteps of the Honourable Prophet
Begins with his honesty, loyalty and truthfulness,
Before his beard or how short his thobe (long shirt/dress) is?

Would you permit me to tell my daughter
That her Christian friend is not an infidel,
And ask her not to cry fearing her friend will go to Hell?

Would you permit me to argue
That God did not authorize anyone on earth after the Prophet
To speak in His name nor did He vest any powers in anyone
To issue ‘deeds of forgiveness’ to people?

Would you permit me to say
That God has forbidden killing the human spirit
And who kills wrongly a human being is as if he killed all of humankind,
And no Muslim has the right to frighten another Muslim?

Would you permit me to teach my children
That God is greater, more just, and more merciful
Than all the (religious) scholars on earth combined?
And that His standards are different
From the standards of those trading the religion,
And that His accountability is kinder and more merciful?

Would you permit me?

*Nizar Qabbani*
*Born: 21 March 1923, Damascus, Syria*
*Died: 30 April 1998, London, England*
*Occupation:diplomat, poet, writer, publisher*
*Nationality: Syrian*


  1. Ma kho wel che Spogmai ba da dey 'comments' pranista karrey wee....kho....:)

  2. LOL! Nu ta da bal cha pa intizaar waley ye che a ba sa owey, lewanee Khugman maama! lolll... :D

  3. Somra rekhcha wayal ye kari, i bet da ghareeb bai pa de hum criticize karay ye. ALLAH de zamong religious scholars aw khalko ta AQAL warki

  4. Youzaf Khana, pa khair raghley :)

    Aao. Sam khalko tang karrey wo. They burnt his books (that's prolly what he's referring to where he says, "In a country where writers are considered INFIDELS and books are burnt...." Bilkul sahee khabara ye karre da. Che Musalman khpal maazgha lag istimaal kee, "infidel" te num shee.

    Khudey de ubakhee oss.

    Oh, and just a little info about the author's personal background -- his sister committed suicide because she was forced into a marraige. And that changes his life completely. Much of his poetry is thus written from a female's perspective, describing the troubles and sorrows of a woman living in a society dominanted by oppressive norms (like forced marraiages).

  5. hmmm...Very realistic poem..der khaa...

    This poem reflects the ordinary and routine approach towards religion...Its all about ritualist and arabic mind of lay muslim..If everybody teach his childern the true religion instead Mulla preached religion like the poet did then everything will go in right direction..Parents must realize it for their children..There iz no place for mulla between God and Human ,,as ghani khan says
    ''mula lare ka da myanza maamila sta au zama da
    da dastaan da lowage na de da qisa da ishq au saah da''...

    very simple but very realistic poem....zama omeed de che Nizar la ba Allah pa de nazam janat warkare e.....
    We must classify Muhammad(PBUH) in three categories (1) Muhammad as a Prophet (2) Muhammad as a human (3) Muhammad as an arabic national...
    bia ba laga asana she.....nor debates te na jorao..her kas de soch oke as quran says TAFAKKARON,TAAQILOON....
    God bless Nizar sb...

    da nan saba da mulla religion bara ke Ghani khan wae
    '' der peraan me tangawalee mazhabona latawale
    charta takay ranra neshta bus qiso pase qisa da ''...

    (au da de pata da jumi pa wraz manza ke lagee che mula sb pa membar nast e au tashe qise kae...)


  6. Pa khair, Nawaz Khana!
    Been a while since you last visited us; welcome again!

    Aao, I agree with you. Islam has been politicized, like every other religion, to suit the interests of those who "teach" it, especially the mullahs, and no one knows the mullahs better than our Ghani Khan as well as the rest of us Pukhtuns who have been trapped in their net of ignorance and lack of understanding of Islam and God!

    I, too, believe Nizar will go to heaven for this poem :) Khudey de kee no. He did nothing but (hopefully) open the eyes and ears of many blinded Muslims -- if they were willing enough to appreciate him, that is.

  7. This is a sensitive subject but I realize, in reading this poem over, that it might seem to run contrary to the common beliefs of today's Muslims, though I see the true reflection of a true Islam in it. Thank you for putting this thought-provoking poem on your blog


Dare to opine :)

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