Bhit Shah, November 05, 2017 (PPI-OT):The national and international intellectuals, writers and researchers have paid rich tribute to Sufi saint Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai saying that though Shah Latif Bhittai is a universal poet and his poetry is abundant with the human values of peace and love for all, yet steps should be taken to spread it globally. They demanded that not only the existing Shah Latif Chairs established in the universities should work better to achieve their defined goals but also domestic as well as international educational institutions should establish Shah Latif Chairs to promote peace, love, and humanity.
They expressed this while speaking at the Literature Conference held in the H.T. Sorley Hall on the second day of 274th Anniversary celebrations of Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai at Bhit Shah. The keynote speaker of the Conference, Mr. Jami Chandio, in his address said that this is 274th year of departure of Bhittai but despite it no any scholar could negate the multidimensional and deeply diverse aspect in Bhittai’s poetry, as every year scholars present their new researchers on Shah, and every generation finds something new in his message, so it is still unfolding and guiding to every coming generation.
He said that Shah Latif, in his poetry, does not the emphasis on destination, but on the journey. “Many a time in his poetry, Shah Latif inspires us to concentrate on the journey and not on the reaching on your destination,” he elaborated. He said that no satisfactory output is seen from the Shah Latif Chair established in different Universities, they should strive to improve their performance. “Not only the existing chairs but new chairs/sections of Shah Latif should be established in different domestic as well as international universities”, he demanded.
Jami Chandio said that although Dr. Hotchand Molchand Gurbakhshani pioneered the compilation and interpretation of Shah jo Risalo, yet Shaikh Ayaz also did marvellous work on Shah Latif. He also spoke about the Molana Rumi and opined that Rumi had confined his poetry into divine lines, but Shah Latif was a master sculptor that he polished the contemporary local folklore and made them immortal, and in this way, his message of love was more humane than for divinity.
Addressing the conference the Gaddi-Nasheen of the shrine of Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai, Syed Waqar Hussain Shah Latifi said that Shah Latif is a symbol of love and peace for the world at large as his message is beyond the borders and regardless of caste, creed, and religions. He said that the musical instrument of Bhittai, Danbooro, possesses five cords, which represents the respect and affectionate the house of Ahl-e-Bait and Panjtan.
He said that Shah Latif was the greatest proponent of women as evident from Shah Jo Risalo. We find the characters of different women presented as ‘heroines’ in his Risalo. So today if Emily Hauze of US and Pie-ling Huang of Taiwan are here in Shah’s love, they are along with other countless inspirational women are the heroines of Shah Latif. Syed Waqar Latifi said that the world today is facing the challenges of extremism, but the message of love and peace of Shah Latif is the elixir of all such ills.
The research scholar from Taiwan, Ms. Pie-ling Huang, who is doing her PhD on the music of Shah Latif, presented deliver her presentation on multimedia and also demonstrated on Tanbooro the surs of Shah Latif as written in his Risalo. She said that she feels the honour to do her research on Shah Latif, as his Raag is not less than a unique treasure. “The realization that the Shah Ja Raagis have carried on, despite such a long period of time, the tradition of spreading the message of Latif through Tanbooro is enthralling us,” she said. She talked in detail about her learning of the Surs of Shah Latif, playing Tanbooro and also learning the Sindhi Language as written in the Risalo.
Speaking at the occasion, Ms. Emily Hauze said although she came from America where, unfortunately, the name of Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai is almost completely unknown, yet she was intrigued to learn that Sindh has a poet who is as marvellous as Shakespeare. “It is not for me to compare those two giants, but from my own observation I would like to say that the Sindhi heart has a deeper and more emotional connection to Bhittai than any Western heart has to Shakespeare”, she said.
Emily further said that a single phrase from the Shah jo Risalo can bring tears to Sindhi eyes, I have never seen Shakespeare do that. “So why is Shah Latif not known in the West?”, she inquired. And then answered herself that I would say that it is because we have very few ways to find him. The best way that I know, and what I can attempt to offer, is the translation.
The other speakers like Kishwar Naheed from Islamabad, Dr. Alamdar Bukhari from Seraiki Study Center Multan, Prof Muhammad Panah Baloch and Prof. K.S. Nagpal also shared their views on the message of Shah Latif. Thereafter the Dialogue session was held under the topic of Shah Latif and contemporary needs. Dr. Ihsan Danish moderated the session, whereas Mr. Inam Shaikh, Noor Muhammad Janjhi and Dr. Sher Mehrani presented their point of view and said that Shah Latif’s poetic philosophy and the message of peace should be spread throughout the world by utilizing the current technologies and connecting the younger generation with Bhittai. The four new books published by the Department of Culture were also launched at the occasion.
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