Friday, April 05, 2013

Aaj Rung Hai - The day Amir Khusrow met Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya

Transport yourself to the 13th Century for a brief moment while I take you through a very small leaflet out of Indian history. It would have been so different then. Yet it would have been so alike to our times, for in spite of whatever changes you see in the surface, the interior world of men has never changed and never will. Passage of time has made this part of legend and like any other legend, it is fantastical. But what is true is the feelings of the main protagonist of the story which he has captured so beautifully well in a musical composition. There it has been preserved for eternity.

A young (destined for greatness) Amir Khusrow is sent to the great Sufi saint, Mehboob-i Elahi (Beloved of God) Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya for spiritual instruction. Khusrow spends time with Hazrat Nizamuddin and in the process realises that he has finally found his Guru. He is elated with the relief that his search is finally over. His stilled mind rejoices his new found conviction of faith and love. And a triumphant Khusrow composes a song to convey his feelings to his mother after reaching home. There is Colour Today, Mother. For I have found my Teacher and my love - Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya.

This song is one of the most famous qawwalis and is regularly sung at places including the Hazrat Nizamuddin Dargah in Delhi. The video below is a rendition of this song by Fareed Ayaz and Abu Muhammad sung in Coke Studio sessions. The raw elements of qawwali are masked by technology and modern western instrumental sounds. But as I said earlier, those are changes on the surface. In the interior world, to a listener so far away in the 21st century, it evokes the same feelings that the great man felt that day.

Listen and Enjoy.