Translation and Explanation by Abu Hasan [sunniport.com]
rukh din hai yā mihr-e-samā, yeh bhi nahiN who bhi nahiN
shab zulf yā mushk-e-khatā, yeh bhi nahiN who bhi nahiN
your appearance is the radiant day; or is it the soaring sun?
is your hair the lovely night; or are they cathay's musk?
neither this, nor that; they are far more majestic.
A Qur’anic verse for the proper context of this verse:
wa’dđuĥā; wa’llayliidhāsajā / by the mid-day when the sun ascends; and by the night when it falls. [surahađ-đuĥā]
In Tafsīr al-Kabīr, Imam Rāzī says:
"The fifth question: Has it been reported by any of our elders that they explained the verse such that đuĥā, or the mid-day is the face of the Prophet and layl, the night, are his tresses? The answer is: yes. And it is not a far-fetched explanation."
rukh = countenance, visage
samā = to rise high, tower above (arabic).
mihr = the sun.
shab = the night
zulf = tresses
mushk-e-khatā = the most fragrant musk, musk of cathay; khatā is cathay in english; a name for china in the past. a dark fragrant matter produced in the gland of special deer found in the himalayas [nepal, tibet]; poets use it as a simile for the darkness of one's beloved's tresses' [also, khitā and khutan]
mumkin meiN yeh qudrat kahāN, wājib meiN ábdiyyat kahāN
ĥayrāN huN yeh bhi hai khaţā, yeh bhi nahiN woh bhi nahiN
ĥaqq yeh ke haiN ábd-e-ilāh, aur áālam-e-imkāN ke shāh
barzakh haiN woh, sirr e khudā; yeh bhi nahiN who bhi nahiN
[these two couplets go together]
How can such power rest in creation (mumkin)? where does Wājib have the attribute of servitude?
I am perplexed, but that is a grave error – he is neither this nor that.[one has to be decisive that RasūlAllāh is a slave of Allah]
The truth is that he is the slave of the Almighty; and the Prince of the Creation
He is the veil, the secret of the Lord Almighty; he is not the Omnipotent, nor is he like any other creation.
It is also the true meaning of Ĥadīth where he said: ‘Do not exaggerate my praise, like the Christians do with the son of Mary; Verily, I am a slave [of Allāh], so call me: ‘The slave of Allāh and His Messenger’ [ábdullāhwarasūluh] [Bukhārī 3445; Dārīmī 2783; MusnadImāmAĥmed 1/23;]
That is the Christians saw miracles and superhuman actions and began to consider Jesus álayhi’ssalām as a God, a son of God [we seek Allāh’s refuge]. But RasūlAllāhşallAllāhuálayhiwasallam admonishes his followers that even if you see these miracles, I am given the power by the Omnipotent – I am His Slave.
A deeper meaning is found in a ĥadīthqudsī: ‘...When I make him my beloved, I become his hearing by which he hears; and his sight by which he beholds; and his hands by which he holds; and his feet by which he walks...’ [Bukhārī 6502]
That is, when Allāhtáālā elevates a slave and grants him the Divine Love, the actions of the chosen slave are in reality the actions of the Lord Almighty and He attributes these [actions] to His Exalted Self. Like He has said in the lofty Book: ‘When you threw [those pebbles], it was not that you threw them; rather Allāh threw them’ [Al-Anfāl 8:17]
So the actions of Allāh through His slave might make a man to mistake awesome power in the slave, whereas in truth, it is a manifestation of Allāh’s power. Allāhtáālā knows best.
It is also the meaning of the other ĥadīth where he said: ‘Allāhtáālā made His creation in two kinds and He made me in the best of all kinds’ [Ţabarāni in Mújam al-Kabīr 3/51; 12/104; Suyūţī in Jam’úlJawāmiý 4926; Bayhaqi in Dalāyil an-Nubuwwah 1/133,170; Qāđīíyāđ in Ash-Shifā, vol.2/chap.3]
And the ĥadīth of AnasrađiyAllāhuánhu: ‘I am the Prince of Adam’s children, and I say this without being boastful’ [Dārimī in Sunan 1/26; Tirmidhī in Sunan 3610; ]
In the explanation of the verse: ‘By your life! They are blind in their intoxication’ [Al-Ĥijr, v.72] IbnÁbbāsrađiyAllāhuánhu said: ‘Allāhtáālā has not created anything, nor brought into existence anything more dear or honorable than MuĥammadşallAllāhuálayhiwasallam. I have not heard Allāhtáālā swear by anybody else’s life other than him’ [BayhaqiDalāyil an-Nubuwwah; Shifā, vol.1/chap.1]
Abū’lJawzā’a said: Allāhtáālā did not swear by anybody’s life except Muĥammad’sşallAllāhuálayhiwasallam because he is dear to Him in His entire creation. [Shifā, vol.1/chap.1]
the entire creation is baffled unable to understand [your reality]; and none is seen
neither near nor far, one who is not defeated [trying to understand thy reality]
Bājūri says [summarized]: This is continuation of the previous couplet where he says there is no limit to his abilities; and here he says the entire creation [warā] is incapable to understand his reality [ĥaqīqatuhu] since Allāhtáālā has chosen him and given him knowledge and secrets, the scope of which is not attained by anybody else in this world. Far and near can be in the same time; or in the due course of the age of this world.
the extent of their [creation] knowledge is that he is a man [bashar];
whereas, he is the best in the entire creation.
mumkin, wājib existence, or wujūd as they say are three: wājib, mumkin, mumtaniý.
· wājib is obligatory and should necessarily exist. it is impossible for a wājib to not exist. onlyAllāhsubĥānahuwatáālā is wājib.
· mumkin: that which is contingent existence. the entire creation is mumkin – that is, it can exist, or cannot. and once existed can go back into non-existence.
· mumtaniý: is impossible to exist or muĥāl. an another God, children for Allāhsubĥānahuwatáālā are all impossible to exist. they are mumtaniý.
qudrat = power
ábdiyyat = attribute of slavery
ĥayrān = perplexed
khaţā = mistake
ĥaqq = truth
ábd e ilāh = slave of God
áālam e imkāN = the contingent world
barzakh = veil
sirr e khudā = secret of the Lord Almighty God
bulbul ne gul un ko kahā, qumrī ne sarv-e-jāN fazā
ĥayrat ne jhunjhlā kar kahā, yeh bhi nahiN who bhi nahiN
The nightingale describes him as a flower; says the dove: a vivacious cypress
Amazement shook up and said: he is neither this nor that.
In Burdah, is the verse:
delicate like a flower; noble like the full-moon
like the sea in generosity; and like time in steadfastness
AnasrađiyAllāhuánhu reports I have never touched anything, neither silk nor satin, softer than the hands of RasūlAllāhşallAllāhuálayhiwasallam.
bulbul = nightingale
gul = flower
qumri = dove
sarv = cypress tree
jāNfazā = lit. increasing in life, vivacious.
sarv-e-jāNfazā = in idiom describes the stature and beauty of the beloved
ĥayrat = amazement
jhunjhlāna = to shake up, startled
khurshīd thā kis zor par, kyā baDhke chamkā thā qamar
bey pardah jab who rukh huwā, yeh bhi nahiN woh bhi nahiN
How dazzlingly bright was the sun! How radiant the full-moon shone
But when the veil was lifted from your face, it outshines both of them!
Jabir IbnSamurah reports: I saw RasūlAllāhşallAllāhuálayhiwasallam on a clear night and a full moon; and there was a red[dish] cloak upon him. I would look at his face and at the full moon. He looked more beautiful than the full moon to me. [Tirmidhi, 2811; Bayhaqī in Dalāyil an-Nubuwwah 1/192]
In another ĥadīth reported by ĤasanibnÁlīrađiyAllāhuánhumā: ‘...His face was radiant, like the shining of the full moon...’ [Bayhaqī in Dalāyil an-Nubuwwah 1/214, Ţabarānī in Al-Kabīr, 414;]
A part of a longer ĥadīth reported by AbūHurayrahrađiyAllāhuánhu: ‘ I have not seen anyone more beautiful or handsome than RasūlAllāhşallAllāhuálayhiwasallam. It was as if the sun was swimming in his face..’
khurshīd = sun
qamar = moon
rukh = countenance
Dar thā ke işyāN kī sazā, ab ho giyā roz-e-jazā
dee un ki raĥmat ne şadā, yeh bhi nahiN who bhi nahiN
I feared punishment for sins; would be given here or in the hereafter,
His mercy proclaimed: [fear not!] it will be neither here, nor there
Which is similar to the verse in Burdah:
fainna min jūdika’ddunyāwađarratahā
wa min úlūmikaílma’llawĥiwa’lqalami
from your generosity is [grace for us in] this world and the hereafter
and amongst your knowledge is that of the Tablet and the Pen
This is a continuation of a previous verse [see below];
that is thy grace [jāhuka] O RasūlAllāhşallAllāhuálayhiwasallam will not be limited [tađīq] as to exclude me from mercy and salvation; rather it shall be extended to a sinner like me and countless others because – it is from your generosity in this world and the hereafter. So his generosity in this world is his guidance and the Hereafter is his intercession şallAllāhuálayhiwasallam. [Ĥāshiyah al-BājūrīálaMatn al-Burdah]
The previous verse mentioned is:
RasūlAllāh’s grace, his lofty station shall not leave me wanting
when the the Most Generous shall manifest with His other name The Avenger.
because the grace, the lofty station of RasūlAllāhşallAllāhuálayhiwasallam is not limited or restricted at any time – it is in this world, just as it is in the hereafter.
işyāN = sins
sazā = punishment; actually it is recompense so sometimes it is used as reward
roz-e-jazā = the day of recompense, judgement day
şadā = beckon
koyī hai nā zāN zuhd par, yā ĥusn-e-taubā hai sipar
yāN hai faqaţ terī áţā, yeh bhi nahiN who bhi nahiN
There are some who pride in their piety [for salvation], and there are some others who have repentance as a shield [from torment];
With us, there is only your grace – we have neither piety, nor repentance.
In a ĥadīth about intercession: ‘I was given the choice between intercession and to select a group of my followers entry into paradise; and I chose intercession because it is for everyone and suffices for all. Do you think this is for just the pious muslims? No! Rather, it is for sinners, the wrongdoers, the stained ones. [Jamú’lJawāmiý, khā/12473; MusnadImāmAĥmed 5452; Tabarāni as quoted by Al-Haythamī in Majmáaz-Zawāyid 10/378; he also said that all the narrators in Ţabarāni’sĥadīth are found in the Saĥiĥs, except NúmanibnQarād; but he is also a reliable narrator]
In another ĥadīth: ‘What a great [blessing] man I am for the evil doers amongst my followers’. He was asked: ‘What about the righteous yāRasūlAllāh?’ He said: ‘The righteous of my ummah will enter paradise because of their deeds; and the wrongdoers will be looking for my intercession anticipating it; verily, it is for every one in my ummah, except those who revile my companions.’
‘‘What a great man I am for the evil doers amongst my followers’. He was asked: ‘What about the righteous yāRasūlAllāh?’ He said: ‘Allāh will make the wrongdoers in my ummah to enter paradise by my intercession and the righteous will enter paradise on account of their deeds’ [Jamú’lJawāmiý, nūn/7264,7265; Tabarāni, 7483; Al-Haythamī, 10/377; AbūNuáym, Ĥilya 10/219; Daylamī, 6738; IbnÁdī said that one of the narrators is weak, all others are reliable.]
sipar = shield
din lahw meiN khonā tujhey, shab şub’ĥ tak sonā tujhey
sharm-e-nabīy, khauf-e-khudā, yeh bhi nahiN woh bhi nahiN
You spend the day in play; and sleep all night till day
Shame for the Prophet’s sake? Fear of the Lord?you have neither.
RasūlAllāhşallAllāhuálayhiwasallam prayed in the night and wept; he stood up all night as it is said in the Burdah:
žalamtusunnata man aĥya’zžalāmailā
ani’shtakatqadamāhu’dđurra min waramī
i have been unjust to his tradition; he, who livened the night until –
his blessed feet complained of pain, being swollen.
ImāmBājūrī writes [summarized]: ‘enlivened - that is he put life into the night by prayer; that is he prayed so much that his feet hurt since he stood in prayer for very long. Mughayrah reports that RasūlAllāhşallAllāhuálayhiwasallam stood in prayer so long that his blessed feet were swollen; he was told: ‘Do you suffer yourself this when Allāhtáālā has forgiven you and those prior and after for your sake? He replied şallAllāhuálayhiwasallam : ‘Shall I not be a thankful slave?’
lahw = amusement, vain pursuits
rizq-e-khudā khāyā kiyā, farmān-e-ĥaqq Tālā kiyā
shukr-e-karam, tars-e-sazā, yeh bhi nahiN who bhi nahiN
The bounties of Lord, you enjoy; His commands, you disobey
Thankfulness for blessing, fear of torment – you have neither.
From the ĥadīth quoted in the previous couplet, supererogatory [nawafil] worship of Allāhtáālā is a trait of the thankful. Like it is said in Burdah:
wa lam uşallisiwāfarđinwa lam aşumi
I have not amassed supererogatory worship before my death,
And I have not prayed or fasted except that which is obligatory
Junayd [al-BaghdādirađiyAllāhuánhu] says: “A group of people were discussing ‘shukr’ or thankfulness with [my uncle] Sarri; I was seven years old then and I was playing in front of him. He asked, ‘What is shukr/thankfulness?’ I replied: ‘It means one does not disobey Him, or sin with the gifts He has given.’ [Sarri] said: ‘Mayhap, a great gift you may receive from Allāh is in your tongue’.” SayyidunāJunayd says: ‘I couldn’t stop myself from weeping at the words of Sarri’. [Ar-Risālah, Imām Al-Qushayri: p.175, s.17/shukr]
It is said: One of the prophetsálayhi’ssalām passed by a small rock from which water was flowing profusely. He was surprised. Allāhtáālā gave speech to the rock and it said: ‘since i have heard Allāhtáālā say: “fear that fire, whose fuel is men and stones [al-Baqarah, v.24]” I weep fearing Allāhtáālā.
The prophet álayhi’ssalām prayed Allāh for the stone to be exempt from hell; Allāhtáālā said that the stone was exempt from hell. The prophet passed by the stone after a few days, and he found the water flowing just like before. He asked the stone, ‘Why do you weep now, since Allāh has exempted you?’.Allāhtáālā made the stone to speak and it said: ‘Earlier I wept from fear and sadness; now I weep from joy and happiness’. [Ar-Risālah, p.177, s.17/shukr ]
It is as if our hearts have become harder than stone as Allāhtáālā says: ‘Then your hearts turned harder thereafter, as if they were like stone, or worse - harder than stone; For verily, among rocks are such from which streams spring and those split and water sprouts and those which sink for the fear of Allāh; and Allāh is not heedless of what you do.’ [al-Baqarah, 2:74]
tars-e-sazā : pity yourself fearing the torment you will suffer
shukr-e-karam: being thankful for blessings
hai bulbul-e-rangīN razā, yā ţūţi-e-naghmā sarā
ĥaqq yeh ke wāşif hai terā, yeh bhi nahiN who bhi nahiN
Is Raza a colorful nightingale; or [merely] a sweet singing paroquet?
The truth is, that he sings your praises; he is neither this nor that.