Sunday, October 30, 2011

Just as the seasons change

"Inform the night of a coming morning, the light of which will permeate the mountains and valleys. Give to the afflicted tidings of a sudden relief that will reach them with the speed of light or with the blinking of the eye. If you see that the desert extends for miles and miles, then know that beyond that distance are green meadows with plentiful shade. If you see the rope tighten, then know that it will snap. Tears are followed by a smile, fear is replaced by comfort and anxiety is overthrown by serenity"

Don't Be Sad, Dr Aid al qarni
"The more I try not to cry,
The more the tears flow from my eyes...
And when I try to change my heart,
The more I feel so torn apart..."

Qasida burdah

Sunday, October 02, 2011

Burda Class -Chapter 1

A couple of notes from the class I have been waiting my whole life to attend! Subhannallah indeed!! How blessed am I to be attending a class dedicated to delving deep into the meanings of the greatest love poem ever written. Only the lover can truly understand what another lover means in their poetry. And even then, they will only understand if their love is of the same kind. I hope I can attain that real love. I hope you can too.

These notes go to the core essence of the name of this blog. Under Cover Pearls. For how many of us have read the Burda.. heard the Burda.. held the Burda... yet not truely understood the intense meanings encapsulated within it? The pearls are indeed there. Yet one must seek and strive to unravel them, like anything in life. Alhamdulilah for this course. Forgive me in advance for any inconsistencies in the note taking. I write notes to assist the revision of reflection later on. But the moment of receiving such blessed information is to be savoured too, and thus naturally gaps occur as the thoughts travel with the teacher...


The lovesick bewails the pain of seperation from the beloved. For every action and thing reminds him of his beloved. He reproaches those who turn away from his beloved. These are the topics of the first chapter.

The genre of the burda is not religion- it's Love & Praise of the Beloved

In regards to the first couple of verses, Imam Busairi asks another person of their love - the poets would often draw out a second person to question- it symbolised how lonely they were- a lonely person with a virtual friend. Busairi extracted from himself a virtual interlocutor, who "mixed his tears with blood" and Busairi seeks to ask why this is. There is a question of debate, however, between who really is the questioner and who is being questioned.

'Tears of blood' is imagery for crying so much. Tears from the eyes are cool in happiness and hot in sadness.

"I remembered the days we shared and the nights that have long since passed. And because of my remembering, tears did flow" - said another.

The lover is constant in thoughts of the handsome and beautiful qualities of the beloved. Thus when wind breezes from the direction of their land, the lover believes it contains their fragrance. "Is there any return for me to the land of the beloved?" they contemplate.

Thus, when we feel a breeze coming from the south east, coming from the direction of the Qibla, we ought to know and think where is is coming from! The gentle breezes are opportunities which Allah Gives you, where you may find some opening.

Lightning coming from the South should be a moment. A moment of intimacy. A moment of remembering Rasoolullah. A moment of thinking of the Burda.

[ Forgive the interjecture, but now this was a life altering moment you see...for I always loved standing in the breeze. But imagine standing in the breeze and for that moment imagining it to be a gust of wind which carried forth from the holy lands... forget the practical technicalities.... just IMAGINE!! ]

Busairi presents his virtual companion as if he is someone in denial...

"You say stop and yet they continue in their downpour"

Love has been described as a transparent purity between the love and the loved. This is what we want between ourselves and Allah. The way to be honest with Allah is to be honest with yourself. Stop fooling yourself.

"Now I have meaning because I have immersed myself in remembrance of the Beloved" said another. Everything is an effect of the beloved.

It was the habit of the poets to suffice themselves with locations/ things in the region of the Beloved. See for example, Chapt 1, line 10, in reference to 'the tree' and 'the mountain'.

"How can you continue to deny the love, when the power of your love has etched marks on your face?!" - In short, he tells himself to give up pretending!! Line 13

Feel the pain of Sacrifice and what do you get in the end? TRUE LOVE

The chapter goes then onto debates with the poets reproachers...

Another poet has said in a similar vein:

"Oh my reproacher, do not blame me...
There is no blame on the belover...
Instead come close to me...
For indeed in matters of love,
I am an Imaam!"

Shaykh AbdurRahman Al-Shaghouri has said:
"Oh criticizer who has criticized because of ignorance. He has criticised a lover who has reunited with his Beloved. (But) If your criticizing is honest, then in the next moment, you will automatically taste the taste of love."

Whose hearts are sensative to the subtelties?!
We live in a time when hearts are asleep, many hearts are dead. The hearts have become numb at the very least, so whose hearts are awake to the subtelties?

It is important to know that there are two hearts. The pumping heart and the spiritual heart.

A sound heart is a healthy heart. The sign of a healthy heart is love of Allah and Rasool.

It is the exaltation of the beloved in the heart that prevents the lover from listening to anyone else!

"....The Lover Never Glances Away...." --> Travel to Allah, even if crippled and broken.

Teacher: Shaykh Jihad Brown

To Note: 1) Notes are in some places paraphrased for understanding. These are a selection of general notes. More detailed explanation was made and notes taken in regards to what lines mean specifically what, though have not been shared in depth. 2) Shaykh Babikir spoke afterwords, notes taken of his reminders may be uploaded later inshaAllah.

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