For two weeks in July, I was back in the Fatherland, Pakistan. On this trip, I had the opportunity to visit Lahore with my father, where we took a little time out on a Friday, to visit Sir Allama Iqbal’s burial site in Hazuri Bagh, before attending prayers at Badshahi Masjid. I will write about Badshahi Masjid in more detail later, but tonight my thoughts return to Iqbal. Though like most Pakistanis, I had heard a lot about Iqbal growing up, I knew little about his works of philosophy and poetry (also like most Pakistanis).
In recent years I have begun to familiarize myself with his works, and found them to be a refreshing source of truth an inspiration. In these years when truth and honesty seem so cheaply priced, Iqbal’s poetry remains a source of these missing elements. He is courageous and unapologetic with his words, as relevant today as they were over 70 years ago. I wanted to share with you, dear traveler, the ghazal below as we complete this evening’s drive. It has been performed by Shafqat Amanat Ali and Sanam Marvi, and is a rendition of Iqbal’s poem – Khudi Ka Sir-e-Nihan: