goyaa mu;haasabah mujhe denaa thaa ((ishq kaa
us :taur dil sii chiiz ko mai;N ne lagaa diyaa

1) as though I had to give an accounting of passion--
2) in that way I applied/employed/added something like a heart



mu;haasabah : 'Computation, calculation, account; adjustment or settlement of accounts'. (Platts p.1006)


lagaanaa : 'To attach ... ; to fasten; to fix; to affix; to put, place; ... to put or set (to work), to employ, to engage; ... to put together (figures), to sum up, to add; to adjust, arrange'. (Platts p.961)

S. R. Faruqi:

The eloquence [balaa;Gat] of 'a heart-like thing' is worthy of praise. That is, for the heart to be a valuable and beloved thing is an absolutely clear and accepted fact; there's no need of any proof or explication to establish it. The individual who is presenting the account is either one who would have to present a completed account, or one whose accounting is being examined.

There were some claims/dues of passion; in order to fulfill them I employed a thing as valuable and beloved as the heart-- that is, I sacrificed it. It's obvious that not all people do such a thing-- it seemed to only/emphatically me that I am an accountant of passion, or perhaps when passion makes an account of my life I might somehow or other be declared to be fraudulent; for this reason I employed my heart.

In 'in that way' there's a pleasurable ambiguity. That is, did I do it on the basis of a feeling of responsibility, or did I do it by using force on the heart, or did I do it willingly? It's clear that by 'passion' is meant the cosmic reality that is a cause of creation, and that also makes a human into a human.

As Mir has said in his masnavi shu((lah-e ((ishq :

mu;habbat ne gaa;Rhaa hai :zulmat se nuur
nah hotii mu;habbat nah hotaa :zuhuur

[love has carved out light from darkness
if love had not existed, there would have been no manifestation]

mu;habbat musabbib mu;habbat sabab
mu;habbat se aate hai;N kaar-e ((ajab

[love is a causer, love is a cause
from love come extraordinary deeds]

The person who feels himself obliged to give an accounting of such a reality can't be contented with any commonplace level of humanity. In the verse are Mir's special melancholy dignity and silent imposingness. He's composed a fine verse.

The idiom lagaa diyaa , together with mu;haasabah , gives a fine enjoyment, because in commerce they say ruupayah lagaanaa , and they call the settling of the question of accounts savaal lagaanaa . And then, ;hisaab lagaanaa too is an idiom; and daad par lagaanaa too has a connection with accounting.



Plainly we're dealing with commercial language. SRF points out a number of commercial idioms involving lagaanaa . But to me another such idiom is even more suggestive: muhr lagaanaa , 'to apply a seal'. A careful accountant uses a seal to identify and protect his records. A person who imagines himself as acting vaguely 'as if' or 'so to speak' [goyaa] in the capacity of an accountant, might well use a vague thing 'something like' a heart to legitimate his accounting. For a seal is indeed 'something like' a heart: it's small, it's a mark of personal identity, it must be pressed (painfully?) hard in order to be useful; it must leave its characteristic (bloody?) mark. (For more on seals, see G{61,5}.) And of course, how better to seal an accounting 'of passion', than with 'something like a heart'?

But why not just go ahead and use a heart? Why that distancing dil sii chiiz ? Here are some possible reasons:

=The heart is long gone (given away, broken, bled away, empty) and so is unavailable, and something else must be used in its stead to validate the accounts of passion.

=The heart has been gone so long that the speaker doesn't even remember it very well, and thus evokes it vaguely, not sure of its exact identity.

=The heart is now so worn and changed that the speaker doesn't even recognize it, and considers it to be not itself but a pale shadow 'something like' itself.

=The heart is so useless that it might as well be turned into a (heart-like) seal for validating account books, so that at least it can be good for something.

=The speaker is so remote and (Sufistically?) distant from the world, that the idea of a heart barely signifies. To him, it's just one more small trivial thing, really hardly worth mentioning, that people seem to go on and on about.

In other words, the difference between a 'heart' and 'something like a heart' is the activation of our own imaginations.