That Blissful State: ”Awaargi”

“Perhaps home is not a place but simply an irrevocable condition” ( James Baldwin , ‘Giovanni’s Room)

(Bade busook se duniya fareb karti hai,bade khuloos se hum aitbaar karte hai… )

The world kept betraying me with great craftiness,
 But still each time, with great sincerity, I chose to trust its ways
Ye dil ye paagal dil mera, kyun bujh gaya.. aawargi
Is dasht mein ek shehar tha, wo kya hua… aawargi..
This crazy heart of mine, oh, why did it/ has it faded away…. or is it just the nothingness at the end of my deliriously wanton ways
There used to be a bustling town in this desert, what happened to it…. ( he proverbial oasis and mirage references)… or is it just the nothingness at the end of my  deliriously wanton ways
Kal shab mujhe beshakl ki, awaaz ne chauka diya
Maine kaha tu kaun hai, usne kaha … aawargi…
Last night , I was startled and woken up by  a starnger’s
I asked the stranger who he was, and he replied … “I am the solitude at the end of your wandering ways”
Ek tu ki sadiyon se mere, humraah bhi humraaz bhi
Ek main ki tere naam se, naa aashna….awaargi
For decades, you have been both my companion as well as my confidante
But I have failed to recognize you as my true destination…. oh my insatiable ways
Ek ajnabi jhauke ne jab, poocha mere ghum ka sabab
Sehra ki bheegi ret par, maine likha…. aawargi
When the voice of a stranger, carried by the wind, asked me the reason for my sadness
On the wet sands of my heart that is  like a desert, I wrote, it is not sadness, it is my… “Awaargi”
Ye dard ki tanhaiyan, ye dasht ka veeran safar
Hum log to ukta gaye, apni suna… aawargi…
These long, deep  spells of loneliness caused by the pain, these long journeys along  uncharted paths & deserted ways
I am now tired of all this, what about you… my  unending desires?
Logon bhala us shehar mein, kaise jiyenge hum jahan
Ho jurm tanha sochna, lekin saza… aawargi
How am I supposed to live in a town
Where the thought of solitude is a crime, but the punishment …. is “awaargi”
Kal raat tanha chaand ko, dekha tha maine khwab mein
‘Mohsin’ mujhe raas aayegi, shayad sada…. aawargi
Last night, a lonely but gloriously shining moon appeared in my dreams
And an inner voice spoke to me ,” For you, ‘Mohsin’, “awaargi” is your happiness/destiny”
These are very beautiful lines written by Mohsin Naqvi and sung in the inimitable voice & style of Ghulam Ali.Like all translations, it is very difficult to explain the true meaning and essence of words. ”Awaargi” is an Urdu word, particularly difficult to translate, because I feel, it can only be felt. It certainly is not ‘loneliness’ which many believe these lines convey. I would liken it to a sufi state of mind, detached from the earth, glorying in the weight of attachment to the spiritual and  deliberately chosen because of a maddening wanderlust for the Beloved. Needless to say, only the chosen few will be in this state of blissfulness or trance.
  Strangely, as I listen to this gazhal, I am reminded of Milan Kundera:”The heaviest of burdens crushes us, we sink beneath it, it pins us to the ground. But in love poetry of every age, the woman longs to be weighed down by the man’s body.The heaviest of burdens is therefore simultaneously an image of life’s most intense fulfillment. The heavier the burden, the closer our lives come to the earth, the more real and truthful they become. Conversely, the absolute absence of burden causes man to be lighter than air, to soar into heights, take leave of the earth and his earthly being, and become only half real, his movements as free as they are insignificant. What then shall we choose? Weight or lightness?” ( The Unbearable Lightness of Being)
 Signing off , guys, have a great weekend! Kal raat tanha chaand ko, dekha tha maine khwab mein,”Aparajita” mujhe raas aayegi, shayad sada…. aawargi… That is my home, I now realize , too.

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