Project Reports

Report of Sham e Bahoo: A Musical Evening of Seminar on Mystical Teachings of Sultan Bahoo & Modern Era

MUSLIM Institute and Centre for Policy Studies (CPS), COMSATS Institute of Information Technology (CIIT), Islamabad organized a Sufi Musical Evening “Sham e Bahoo” on Thursday, December 8, 2016 at CIIT, Islamabad. The Sufi Musical Evening was a side event of the seminar “Mystical Teachings of Sultan Bahoo & Modern Era”. Raja Hamid Ali presented the Kalam e Bahoo in first session of Sufi Musical Evening and Imran Shaukat Ali Khan (son of Ustad Shaukat Ali Khan) presented the Kalam e Bahoo in second session of Sufi Musical Evening. Ambassador of Portugal His Excellency Joao Paulo Sabido Costa was Chief Guest on the occasion and also shared his views. Chiarman MUSLIM Institute Sahibzada Sultan Ahmad Ali, Dr. Muhammad Maroof Shah , Author and Columnist from Srinagar and MD Shah Alom from Dhaka shared their views on the occasion. Dr. Ayesha Rafique, Assistant Professor, Fatimah Jinnah Women University, Rawalpindi moderated the proceedings of the evening. Diplomats, academicians, politicians, journalists, researchers and people from different walks of life participated in the event.


Brief summary of views expressed by speakers is given below:

Sultan Bahoo’s poetry contains creative and relevant message in political, social, cultural, economic and spiritual terms. His message of spirituality is needed today for the purification of heart and inner satisfaction. Self-recognition and accountability is essential to understand the humanity and develop true respect for each other. As world has become closely linked today, we should try to learn from each other.


Mystics spread Islam in the Indian Subcontinent and all over the Muslim world through mysticism and spiritual power. Once Mevlana Rumi was busy in reading books, Shams Tabrez indicated the books towards the pond. Mevlana Rumi angrily called him mad. Shams Tabrez took books out of pond unharmed. Sufism has its spiritual power expressed through love and songs. It created the bond of love between God and the man. Ibrahim ibne Adham was a king. Later he left the throne and engaged in the Sufism. Similarly Hadrat Sultan Bahoo, Allama Iqbal, Sheikh Nazamuddin Olyaa, Sheikh Saadi, Umer Khayam and many others who contributed to the spread of Islam through Sufism. Mysticism is a universal concept which leads the man to the path of love.

Sufi or metaphysical culture is deep into the heart and mind of Pakistani people. Commitment to the divine power is basic reason behind the solidity of people or nations. All the metaphysics is contained in la ilaha illallah. It is the only thing we have to know on the earth. It can be further simplified that in “Hoo” is everything. It is the Sufi understanding. And what is “Hoo”? “Hoo” is not different from deepest self. Poetry of Sultan Bahoo is a revelation that basis of mysticism is:

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Yaqeen Danam, Dareen Aalam, Keh la mabood illa hoo
Wala Mojood fil konain , la maqsood illa hoo
I know for sure that in this universe is no object of worship but he.
He alone exists in both worlds, He alone is the goal



Basic claim of Islam as well as Semitic and non-Semitic religions of world is quest for divinity. Whole humanity is agreed upon this goal. Postmodern philosophy and secular or agnostic sectors are also mostly in agreement with this ideology. Culture of Pakistan is one of the greatest expressions of mystic heritage. In mysticism, there is no self, rather there is only “Hoo”. When there is prevalence of selflessness and acceptance of “Hoo”, real appraisal of mysticism achieves.

Today, our historians, scholars and especially academicians are not paying due attention to promote our great traditions and literature in form of Sufi poetry. In fact, credit goes to those mothers who have been teaching their children about the sanctity of this Kalaam by reciting this kalam infront of their childrens and have been passing this tradition from one generation to other for decades. We are also indebted to those famous Qawals who helped a great deal to keep the message of Sufis alive through their Qawalis. Furthermore, if we ever came across an ideal example of interfaith harmony in the history of sub-continent, it must be revolving around the notion of mystical teachings. In fact, Sufis emancipated the people of sub-continent from the clutches of ignorance and decay. They played a very constructive role in the reformation of societies and leading people towards Allah Almighty while practically manifesting the essence of spiritualism in accordance with the injunctions of the Quran and Sunnah. Sufis embraces us with the creative ability to cope with the emerging challenges. Sufi teachings are fundamental if we are sincere to resolve contemporary issues.


Selected Persian and Punjabi poetry of Sultan Bahoo presented in musical evening is as follow:

Naal kusangee sang na karee-e, Kul noon laaj na laaee-e hoo
Tumme tarbooz mool na honde, Torh makkey lai jaaee-e hoo
Kaan de bachche hans na theende, toray motee chog chugaaee-e hoo.
Kaurhe khooh na mitthe hunde, Sai manaan khand paaee-e hoo
Do not accompany treacherous and with slandering everyone you do not pledge Hoo
Even you take Bitter melon to Makah they can never become sweet Hoo
Raven chicks can never become goose even if pearls you feed them to eat Hoo
‘Bahoo’ even if you add tons of sugar to Bitter wells can never be sweetened Hoo
So hazar tinhaan to sadqay jahray monh no bolan phika Hoo
Lakh hazar tinhan to sadqay jahray gal krainday hika Hoo
Lakh karor tinhan to sadqay jahray nafs rakhainday jhika Hoo
Neel pidam tinhan to sadqay Bahoo jahray howan sona sadawan sika Hoo
Hundred thousand sacrifice upon those who don’t utter awful thing Hoo
Thousands of thousand sacrifices upon those who only say one thing Hoo
Billions of sacrifices upon those who rein in their ego they tread Hoo
Trillion and trillions of sacrifices upon those who are pure gold but show themselves lead Hoo
Barha gufmtam tura dil barha Gard e eeyn hargiz magard, eeyn karha
To na ae waqif, zay dard e dilbaran Ishaq aasan nayst, mushkil karha
Dum zadan dar rah e Ishq yar neest Para sho dar rah uo sad par ha
Many a time I told you my heart, many a times Don’t turn around to these affairs
You know nothing of the pain caused by the beloved Love is not easy these are difficult affairs
In the way of love don’t mutter Get torn into pieces in this way, thousand pieces



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