Verses from other poets in Arabic poems of the Promised Messiah

0

Last Updated on 18th December 2020

Among the miraculous and extraordinary Arabic works of Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, peace be upon him, were the great Arabic qasaid, or poems, which cover a wide range of subjects, including exaltation of Allah the Almighty and praise of the Holy Prophet, peace and blessing of Allah be upon him.

rsz_hazrat_mirza_ghulam_ahmad_qadiani_as.jpg

The opponents have questioned the authenticity of these poems and submitted that the founder of the Ahmadiyya Jamaat stole some verses from other poets and mixed them with his own words and later claimed that God helped him write those poems.

Opponents raise this allegation referring to the very few occasions where the Promised Messiahas has either quoted from Arabic literature or his words have naturally corresponded with other poets.

This objection has been repeatedly rejected by well-renowned Arabic scholars. If the enemies of the Promised Messiahas had spared some time to do some research instead of concocting stories against him, they could have easily recognised that it is not stealing or plagiarism if a literary writer used similar words or even same structures present in the writings of other scholars.

Allama ibn al-Rashiq states:

و مما يعد سرقا و لیس بسرق اشتراک اللفظ المتعارف

“If prominent words [present in the work of one writer] correspond with [another], then they do not fall in the category of plagiarism.” (Al-Umdatu fi Mahasin al-She‘r wa Adabihi, Bab as-Sarikat wa ma Shakilaha, Juz‘ 2, p. 292)

Then, he presents the following examples:

“Antarah says:

وخيل قددلفت لها بخيل

عليها الأسد تهتصر اهتصارا

“‘And I brought my horses closer to the enemy’s horses [for fighting]. I have such lions riding on those horses that completely tear (the enemies) into pieces.’

“Amr ibn Ma‘adi Yakrib says:

وخيل قد دلفت لها بخيل

تحية بينهم ضرب وجيع

“‘And I brought my horses closer to the enemy’s horses [for fighting]. They exchange the gifts of inflicting a severe blow to their [enemies] while greeting them.’

“Khansa Tarsi … says:

وخيل قددلفت لها بخيل

فدارت بين كبشيها رحاها

“‘And I brought my horses closer to the enemy’s horses [for fighting]. Thence, the war flared up between the leaders of these two groups.’

“Another example is:

وخيل قددلفت لها بخيل

ترى فرسانها مثل الأسود

“‘And I brought my horses near the enemy’s horses [for fighting]. You will see the horsemen as if they are lions.’”

Referring to these examples, Allama ibn al-Rashiq says:

و امثال هذا کثير

“There are very many examples of this kind.” (Al-Umdatu fi Mahasin al-She‘r wa Adabihi, Bab as-Sarikat wa ma Shakilaha, Juz‘ 2, p. 292)

The verses of some very famous poets correspond with each other. At times, exact same phrases and words are used by both writers and on other occasions, the meanings of their couplets bear sharp resemblance.

Below are some examples:

Imra‘ul Qais says:

إنی حلفت يمينا غير كاذبة

انك أقلف الاماجبی القمر

“I swore on oath and it was not false that [O Caesar of Rome] You are an uncircumcised person, like a one who has been gathered by the moon.” (Diwan Imra‘ul Qais, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut [2004], p. 81)

Hazrat Hassanra bin Thabit said:

إنی حلفت يمينا غير كاذبة

لوكان للحارث الجفنی أصحاب

“I swore on oath and it was not false that if Harith al-Jafni had friends and associates, [they would have surely sided with him].” (Diwan Hassan ibn Thabit, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut [2004], p. 30)

At another place, Imra‘ul Qais said:

ويخطوعلى صم صلاب كأنها ٖ

حجارة غيل وارسات بطحلبٖ

“He [the horse] pawed on the hard rocky ground and looked as though he is a hard rock in the running water, which has been turned yellow by the moss.” (Diwan Imra‘ul Qais, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut [2004], p. 33)

Hazrat Nabigah al-Ja‘dira says:

كأن حواميه مدبرا

خضبن وإن كان لم يخضب

“Upon its return, it seems that the hooves of this [horse] have been dyed. However, they have not been coloured in reality.”

حجارة غيل برضراضة

كسين طلاء من الطحلب

“[As though, the hooves of this horse] are as hard as a stone submerged in shallow water on a hard ground, and these hooves are covered with moss.” (Al-She‘r wa al-Shu‘ara li Ibn Qutaybah, p. 34)

Imra‘ul Qais says:

كأن الحصى من خلفها وأمامها

إذا نجلته رجلها خذف أعسرا

“It is as if he is throwing stones from the front and back, when his legs hit the rocks.” (Diwan Imra‘ul Qais, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut [2004], p. 63)

Hazrat Shumakhra said:

لها منسم مثل المحارة خفة

كأنّ الحصی من خلفه خذف أعسرا

“His hooves are like the hooves of a camel. It looks as if he is throwing pebbles with great force from the rear.” (Al-She‘r wa al-Shu‘ara li Ibn Qutaybah, p. 34)

Imra‘ul Qais said:

وقوفا بها صحبی علی مطيهم

يقولون لا تهلك أسى وتجمل

“At the house of the beloved, I stopped the rides of my friends for my own sake, while the friends were saying, ‘Do not hurt yourself with the sorrow [caused by parting from the beloved] and bear it patiently.’” (Diwan Imra‘ul Qais, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut [2004], p. 110)

Al-Farazdaq said:

وقوفا بها صحبی على وإنما

عرفتُ الدارَ بعد التوهم

“I stopped the rides of my friends before the beloved’s house and I definitely identified the beloved’s house after deep thought.”

يقولون لا تهلك أسى ولقدبدت

لهم عبرات المستهام المتيم

“The friends say, ‘Do not hurt yourself with the sorrow [caused by parting from the beloved] and bear it patiently. However, the tears of a person, who is madly and insanely in love, came out before them [the friends].” (Diwan Al-Farazdaq, Dar-ulKutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut [1987], p. 524)

In his book, Al-Umdatu fi Mahasin al-She‘r wa Adabihi, Allama ibn al-Rashiq writes:

من التضمين ما يحيل الشاعر فيه احالة، ویشير به اشارہ

“One kind of tazmin [introducing verses of someone else in one’s own work] is to point to a couplet or the subject of a number of couplets and draw attention towards it.”

He further states:

فهذا النوع ابعد التضمينات كلها و اقلها و جودا و ذالك نحو قول ابى تمام:

لعمر و مع الرمضاء والنار تلتظى

ارق واحمى منك فی ساعة الكرب

اراد البيت المضروب به مثل:

المستجير بعمر وعند كربتہ

كالمستجير من الرمضاء بالنار

“The second kind of tazmin is rare and its example is present in the following two couplets. Abu Tammam says:

“‘I swear by Amr that the heat and flame of this burning fire becomes more harsh and fiery in the time of hardships.’

“The [above couplet] points towards the subject of the second couplet:

“‘The one who seeks refuge from Amr in times of trouble is like the one who seeks refuge from the flame of fire.’” (Al-Umdatu fi Mahasin al-She‘r wa Adabihi, Bab at-Tazmin wa al-Ijazah, Juz‘ 2, p. 88)

Allama Abu Hilal al-Askari states:

ربما اخذ الشاعر القول المشهور و لم يبال كما فعل النابغة بانه اخذ قول وهب بن الحارث بن زهرة

تبدو كواکبه والشمس طالعة۔۔۔

و قال النابغة

تبدو كواکبه والشمس طالعة

لاالنورُ نور ولا الاظلام اظلام

“Sometimes poets include famous quotes [from each others’ words] in their writings without any hesitation. As Al-Nabigha excerpted from the following saying of Wahab bin al-Harith bin Zahrah:

“‘His stars are always [trying] to become apparent even though the sun is shining …

“His stars are always [trying] to become apparent even though the sun is shining. So in this case, neither is the light real, nor is darkness really darkness.” (Kitab al-Sinaatain, Bab as-Sadis p. 197)

Allama ibn al-Rashiq states:

الشعر جادة، وربما وقع الحافر على موضع الحافر

“Couplets should be considered like a path. Just as the footsteps of a horse while walking along a path sometimes fall on the exact same tracks of another horse, so too are the words of one poet repeated over and over again by other poets.” (Al-Umdatu fi Mahasin al-She‘r wa Adabihi, Bab as-Sarikat wa ma Shakilaha, Juz‘ 2, p. 292)

Responding to a similar kind of objection which has been mentioned at the outset, the Promised Messiahas cited the works of two different poets of the pre-Islamic era and explained:

“Literary scholars acknowledge this fact that out of thousands of phrases, if a handful of sayings are added as an extract, then they do not cause any effect on the quality of eloquence. On the contrary, this type of writing is considered powerful. For example, the following verses of the two poets of the Mu‘allaqat al-Sab‘ah [a group of seven Arabic poems of pre-Islamic poets] spontaneously coincide with each other:

“One of the poets says:

یقولون لا تھلک اسًی و تجمّلٖ

“[They were saying, ‘Do not hurt yourself with the sorrow (caused by parting from the beloved) and bear it patiently.’]

“And the other poet states:

یقولون لَا تھلک اسًی و تجلّدٖ

“[They were saying, ‘Do not hurt yourself with the sorrow (caused by parting from the beloved) and bear it patiently.’]

“Now tell me which of the two should be called a plagiarist. On the other hand, if an incompetent person is allowed to write something by stealing, even then he will not be able to produce quality writing because the real ability is not present in him. However, a person [the Promised Messiahas], who is capable of writing consistently and without any cessation, it is indeed his miracle that he is able to express scholarly matters, pearls of wisdom and insightful knowledge in coherent, ornate, expressive and eloquent phrases, and there is no question of objection even if 10,000 phrases of someone else’s writing come in his works according to the need of the subject.” (Nuzul-ul-Masih, Ruhani Khazain, Vol. 18, p. 443)

Hence, the Arabic poems and other works of the Promised Messiahas also contain tazmin and profound sayings of famous poets and writers, and this style of writing, as demonstrated above, proves that his Arabic writings were indeed exceptional and out of the ordinary.

No posts to display

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here