Project Reports

INAUGURAL SESSION - Report of International Conference on Sultan Bahoo and Mevlana Rumi


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Chair of the Session
Prof. Dr. Zaffar Mueen Nasar
Vice Chancellor, Punjab University

 
 
 
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Chief Guest’s Speech
Prof. Dr. Mohamamd Nizamuddin
Chairperson, Punjab Higher Education Commission

 
 
 
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Opening Speech
Sahibzada Sultan Ahmad Ali
Chairman, MUSLIM Institute

 
 
 
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Guest Speech - 1
H. E. Mr. Jononov Sherali
Ambassador of Tajikistan to Pakistan

MUSLIM Institute and University of the Punjab, Lahore organized an International conference “Sultan Bahoo & Mevlana Rumi” on Thursday May 11, 2017 at University of the Punjab Lahore. Scholars, researchers and keynote personalities from Tajikistan, Iran, Afghanistan, Bangladesh and different universities from all four provinces of Pakistan contributed research papers and shared their views in the conference. Researchers, scholars, intellectuals, students, university professors, politicians, social activists and journalists participated in the conference.

Brief summary of views expressed by speakers observed as under:

Eras of Mevlana Rumi (R.A) and Hadhrat Sultan Bahoo (R.A) are more than four centuries apart, yet both mystics possess deep intellectual similarity. Most of the Sufi literature is in Persian language and contributions of Mevlana Rumi and Hadhrat Sultan Bahoo to Persian literature are noteworthy. Although this great intellectual literary heritage took birth in different parts of the Muslim world yet manifest strong spiritual as well as philosophical affiliation. Particularly, Sufi literature which is the sole creation of spiritual enlightenment of different saints from Arab, Baghdad, Basra, Medina, Makkah, Spain, Delhi, Punjab, Sindh and Indonesia. One thing which is fundamental among these saints is the unity of thought. Common way of life is manifested form their lives. They look like following a common journey through a common path as well as for a common destination. They are the flowers of same garden, hence, spell same fragrance.

From an intellectual perspective, observational integration in philosophical interpretation between Hadhrat Sultan Bahoo and Mevlana Rumi are of great significance. One wonders while looking into this integration. Following verses are inscribed on the shrine of Mevlana Rumi

کعبۃ العشاق باشد ایں مقام
ہر کہ ناقص آید ایں جا شد تمام
"This is Kaaba for lovers of Allah; any deficient lover would find perfection for himself here."


Outside the shrine of Hadhrat Sultan Bahoo, identical message is inscribed:

ہر کہ طالب حق بود من حاضرم
ز ابتدا تا انتہا یکدم برم
"Whosoever wants to attain real objective of his life, may come here; I will get his spiritual journey completed within wink of eye."


Another message inscribed on Maulana Rumi's shrine is:

بعد از وفات تربت ما بر زمیں مجو
در سینہ ہائے مردم عارف مقام ماست
"Don't try to find me in my grave after my demise; I will live in the hearts of those who recognize Divinity."


Hadhrat Sultan Bahoo has also given the same message in these words:

نام فقیر تنہاں دا باھو قبر جنہاں دی جیوے ھو
"A mystic is the one whose grave is also alive Hoo.

 

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Welcome Remarks
Prof. Dr. Muhammad Saleem Mazhar
Head of Persian Department, Punjab University

 
 
 
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Guest Speech - 2
Muhammad Hussain Bani
Asadi
Council General of Iran at Lahore

The message of Sufis does not fall a prey to dormancy rather it is disseminated from one heart to another. The very reason behind the universality of their message is truthfulness. Hence, one cannot subjugate truthfulness. This message is capable of serving humanity today as it has been guiding it since centuries. We are living in an era where we are involved in the historically staggering amount of weapons production. Weapons of mass destruction are being produced at a staggering amount in the wake of nuclear technology. Space weaponization is alarmingly threatening world peace. Satellite guided nuclear weapons are tarnishing the image of a peaceful world. All these weapons are not meant for a particular segment of population or ethnicity but a threat to collective peace.

While lamenting over the situation, Iqbal said,

Adam needs a way of life, Adam needs perpetuity


Even in this modern age, man is begging for peace. Man has exploited every material aspect for the establishment of peace but failed. We need to explore spiritual perspectives if we truly wish for a peaceful world. It is the only way to mend our approaches. Recent wave of terrorism, intolerance and extremism highlight the significance of mystic teachings of peace, love and harmony.

Mevlana Rumi narrates an apologue in his book that I am a deaf man and dreamt the whole world as deaf. Now, I am compelled to say that the world is not able to understand my view point. Same is the case in our practical lives that we only consider ourselves the perfect ones. Ultimately, we declined to understand others. In this scenario, Sufis teach us the principles of courtesy, humbleness, reverence and simplicity. They further emphasized that Allah is the ultimate authority, the sole owner of intellect and we all are dependent and humble in front of Him. While completely disregarding the policy of chanting Fatwa (a legal pronouncement in Islam) Sufis adopted the policy of joining others by highlighting common grounds with an open heart in their circle of love, faith and harmony. Their teachings completely denied the notion of territorial or racial supremacy in the wake of their quest for communal peace.

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Moderator
Ahmad AlQadri
Research Associate, MUSLIM Institute

Hadhrat Sultan Bahoo wrote about one hundred and forty books mostly in Persian. In these books, Hadhrat Sultan Bahoo emphasized following Sharia side by side focusing spiritual dimensions like the importance of Dhikr (contemplation) in spiritual vision. He was determined to convey the people the message of peace, love, harmony and respect. So, Hadhrat Sultan Bahoo conveys to the whole mankind to live their entire life in the love of Allah. Different Sufis of different regions gave same message using different languages. Hadhrat Sultan Bahoo and Mevlana Rumi gave message of stopping violence and transforming lives of the people of a community through spiritual transformation.

According to the researchers, Mevlana Rumi is the most decorated personality of all times. He is illuminating the hearts of people like a candle. UNESCO designated Mevlana Rumi as Messenger of World Peace. Although Mevlana Rumi witnessed carnage throughout his life, there is only message of peace and love in his poetry. Mevlana mentions the sun and moon is his poetry which stands for illumination and brightness. After meeting Shams Tabriz, life of Mevlana revolutionized and he administered public the lesson of love.

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Guest Speech - 3
Senator Arifullah Pashtoon
Former Chairman Foreign Relations Committee, Senate of Afghanistan

Basic object of “Tasawuf” (Spiritual teachings) is purification of inner self and the satisfaction of heart. Punjabi Abyat of Hadhrat Sultan Bahoo touch the heart and give life to the feelings to realize the nearness of Allah. “Tasawuf” is beautiful combination of knowledge and wisdom. All great Sufis of the world for instance, Shah-e-Jeelan Syedna Abdul Qadir Jeelani (R.A), Hadhrat Junayad Baghdadi (R.A), Imam Ghazali (R.A), Sultan Bahoo (R.A), Mevlana Rumi (R.A) and rest of the others were all man of actions.

There is a dire need to study intellectual similarities between Hadhrat Sultan Bahoo and Mevlana Rumi so that we can explore the hidden treasure. Humanity is seeking to know the uncovered aspects of this knowledge and wisdom. It is high time for every individual including all educational and governmental institutions to recognize their duty in order to spread the message of “Sufis” so that peace and love can be ensured. First we have to ensure the availability of Sufi literature in the libraries of Pakistan and other countries. Secondly we have to publish this poetry in other regions for the maximum dissemination of their message. In the side-lines of these efforts, we should continue organizing such seminars from research point of view in different countries. We are in dire need to work on the Persian literature of Hadhrat Sultan Bahoo because his Persian literature is full of philosophical, spiritual and compassionate teachings. Such thesis ought to be produced which could suggest the solutions of contemporary problems in the light of teachings of Mystics.


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