Project Reports

Report of launching ceremony of the book "Heart Deeper Than Ocean"


MUSLIM Institute organized a launching ceremony of the book “Heart Deeper Than Ocean” (Translation of Sultan Bahoo’s Punjabi Abyat by Dr. Z.A. Awan) on Thursday March 16, 2017 at National Library of Pakistan, Islamabad. Maj. Gen. Shahid Hashmat (R), Former Principal, Centre for International Peace and Stability, National University of Science & Technology chaired the session. Research Associate of MUSLIM Institute Malik Asif Tanveer moderated the proceedings. Foreign delegates, professors and students of universities from different institutions, analysts and media persons, poets and literary persons also participated in the discussion.

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Honorable speakers of the seminar and their views are as follow:

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Opening Remarks
Mr. Ahmad Al-Qadri
Research Associate, MUSLIM Institute

Hazrat Sultan Bahoo’s Si Harfi (four verse poetry) Punjabi Abyat ends with the word “Hoo”. Researchers have argued different versions regarding this peculiarity. The word “Hoo” helps us in strengthening our relationship with God. It is not merely a “Radif” (repetition of same words in the end of lines in a poem) but also represents a call towards the real destination. “Hoo” invokes us with the spirit of keeping worldly desires at a distance. Sufis’ message of humanity has fallen a prey to dormancy in the wake of developing modern languages. The message of Sufis has rarely been the subject of modern languages. One cannot observe any distinguished work regarding Abyat-e-Bahooo in these languages. In this respect, Dr. Z.A. Awan has rendered a tremendous contribution by translating Abyat in English language. Keeping alive the essence of spiritual message of “Bahoo” is the specialty of this translation. It guides as well as influences the reader to a greater extent.

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Special Remarks
Professor Ahsan Akbar
Renowned Poet and Scholar

Talking about Hazrat Sultan Bahoo is a source of blessing for us. Such personalities have a tremendous contribution in the transformation of our societies which is the sole reason of their being alive today in the hearts of hundreds and thousands of disciples across the globe. Their work is a constant source of enlightenment for the whole world. Sultan Bahoo is among those Sufi mystics having remarkable literary contribution in prose as well in poetry. Poetry affects an individual in heart touching manner. Emphasis on context rather meaning by Dr. Z. A. Awan deserves tribute.

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Special Remarks
Mr. Zafar Bakhtavri
Former President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce

It looks that the world has become a global village but one has never experienced such a divided world earlier. Racism, sectarianism, lingual bias and regional divide are the order of the day. Hadrat Sultan Bahoo vehemently denies sectarianism while endorsing that,

Neither am I a Sunni nor a Shia
نہ میں سنی نہ میں شیعہ


Today, sectarianism has become rampant in Muslim Ummah. We have to adopt the message of Sufis. We have to prove ourselves a great nation while denouncing disappointment. Sultan Bahoo’s teachings are the most conducive tool against today’s turmoil, which are totally based on inter-faith harmony, love and brotherhood.

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Special Remarks
Mr. Arshad Mehmood Nashad
Lecturer, Allama Iqbal Open University, Department of Urdu Language

Sultan Bahoo enjoys an eminent position among intellectual Sufi poets of Punjab due to the intellectual depth and perfection of their work. Though Kalam-e-Bahoo is a short script yet its spillover effect is objective in essence which makes it a very precious collection. Metaphors, references, similes and phrases incorporating Kalam-e-Bahoo are easy to understand for a lay man and play an important role in the smooth dissemination of the actual message. Popular rural cultural references encompassing Kalam-e-Bahoo prudently explain deep thoughts of spiritualism to a layman.

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Special Remarks
Ms. Ayesha Masood Malik
Poet and Writer

Translation of a spiritual and historic piece of writing enshrined with divine message and objective is not an easy task. Dr. Z.A. Awan has rendered this service very successfully. Message of Sufis is rich of love and brotherhood. Being a poetess, I want to pay tribute to the services of Sultan Bahoo. Especially ‘Radif’ in his Kalam “Hoo” has added manifold to the beauty of this Kalam.

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Special Remarks
Dr. Qaisara Alvi
Former Director Women Campus, International Islamic University, Islamabad

“Heart Deeper than Ocean” comprises ten chapters. Elucidation of key terms like spiritualism and Sufism is narrated comprehensively. Though such translation is an uphill task yet it is translated so prudently that it is endorsable to logic and spirit in an equal manner. Hazrat Sultan Bahoo was a born saint and his name “Bahoo” mean, the one who lives with God. In his view point, basis of Sufism is “Wahdaniyat” (Oneness) which is completely in accordance with the injunctions of the Holy Quran. The shrine of Hazrat Sultan Bahoo has been a constant source of guidance for seekers of knowledge and eternity for more than 300 years.

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Special Remarks
Mr. Tikka Khan
Renowned Journalist

I deeply acknowledge and oblige the service rendered by Z.A. Awan, translator of “Heart deeper than Ocean” under the auspices of Al-Arifeen publications into an international language. There is dire need to introduce teachings of eminent Sufis like Hadrat Sultan Bahoo in our curriculum, particularly in our English medium schools. It will help a great deal in resting our societies at peace. I, vehemently, pay tribute to Sahibzada Sultan Muhammad Ali and Sahibzada Sultan Ahmad Ali for making possible the publishing of this book.

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Special Remarks
Mr. Ashfaq Gondal
Former Federal Secretary for Information

Dr. Z. A. Awan really deserves credit for translating this spiritual Kalam (poetry) which represents the injunctions of the Holy Quran in letter and spirit. As Sultan Bahoo narrates that,

Do not be afraid of pain if it brings relief “Hoo”

Allah Almighty directs in the Holy Quran that success comes in the wake of hardships. Similarly, Sultan Bahoo teaches us to have faith in God and face hardships bravely. There is dire need to disseminate this universal message among children particularly among those who do not know Urdu or Punjabi. It will definitely lead them towards real prosperity.

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Special Remarks
Dr. Mujeeb Ahmad
Chairperson Dept. of History, International Islamic University, Islamabad

Sultan Bahoo has written a lot in Persian language but he is known for his Punjabi Abyat. A Sufi attains the love of God through the love of Prophet (PBUH) and the love of his “Murshid” (spiritual mentor). Sultan Bahoo laid great emphasis over attaining the eternal love of God. It is first complete translation of Abyat-e-Bahoo. The book is remarkable in nature and fundamental in essence. I pay tribute to the services of Z.A. Awan which will be remembered by coming generations.

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Guest of Honor
His Excellency Mr. Jao Paulo Sabido Costa
Ambassador of Portugal to Pakistan

Poetry is the most appropriate medium for a poet to inculcate his thoughts into a generation. One can find only the message of love and spirituality in the poetry of Hadrat Sultan Bahoo. The auspicious book launching ceremony aims at highlighting the importance of spirituality in an individual’s life. The universality of the Kalam of a Sufi poet speaks clear of the reality as it addresses the whole humanity. Hadrat Sultan Bahoo’s poetry is revolutionary in essence and works as a profounder of love and peace in the world. I extend my sincere gratitude to Dr. Z.A. Awan. His work has provided an opportunity especially to a foreigner like me and now we will be able to benefit ourselves from this universal message.

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Guest of Honor
His Excellency Mr. Piotr A. Opalinski
Ambassador of Poland in Pakistan

Voices of hatred, prejudices, intolerance, racism and extremism sounds roar in today’s international environment. In this respect, Hadrat Sultan Bahoo’s message of love and brotherhood is of pivotal importance. His message stands to be an array of hope and unity in the wake of a world inflicted with turmoil. Being the land of Sufis, I always pledge a great respect for Pakistan. Its spiritual environment grants me inner satisfaction and I feel myself a member of this auspicious community.

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Dr. Z.A. Awan
A Renowned Scholar & Translator of Abyat e Bahoo

I visited the shrine of Hadrat Sultan Bahoo in 1962 for the very first time. It was there, I observed great satisfaction and spiritual relief. In the wake of globalization, not only the western world is going through a dramatic change but also the Muslim community across the globe. I have always been concerned about youth that how we could acquaint them with the real message of Sufis. Under the auspices of Sahibzada Sultan Ahmad Ali, I have been able to translate this message in English. Abyat themselves were the only motivational force behind my translation. Each word of Abyat is enshrined with a deep thought, constructive message while propagating the real objective of an individual’s life.

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Concluding Remarks
Major General (Retd.) Shahid Ahmad Hashmat
Former Principal, Centre for International Peace and Stability, National University of Science and Technology, Islamabad

Translation of this universal Kalam is really a matter of honor and a source of blessing for a writer. There is no denying the fact that Kalam-e-Bahoo is universal in essence which is now understandable to the readers of English language. Therefore, not only we but also our coming generations will be accredited to Dr. Z.A. Awan for this translation. Message of Sufis is based upon love, brotherhood and spiritual satisfaction of an individual. Sufis have been rendering every possible effort in making people acquaint with divine message in an easily understandable manner.

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Vote of Thanks
Sahibzada Sultan Ahmad Ali
Chairman, MUSLIM Institute

Message of Sufis of the sub-continent descended to us through various means. Firstly, the credit goes to those mothers who have been disseminating this Kalam to their children from one generation to another in the shape of a cultural song called “Lori” in the sub-continent. Secondly, those farmers who used to say this Kalam in order to show their love with God and with Islam after getting tired from work in their fields. Thirdly, credit goes to those “Qawals” (singers) who denoted their lives while promoting this “Kalam” through their “Qawalis”. As far as perfection and far-sightedness is concerned, Kalam written by Sufis of the sub-continent is not less than that of Sunai, Jami, Hafiz and Sa’di in both logic and spirit but, still lacking attention for consistent research. It is a matter of great pleasure that we have initiated research in this respect. I am indebted to all respected guests for sparing time and making successful this auspicious event.

At the end of the seminar Raja Hamid Ali presented the Kalam-e-Bahoo (Sultan Bahoo’ poetry) with Sufi Music.

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