Ghazal 117, Verse 5x


kare kyaa saaz-e biinish vuh shahiid-e dard-e aagaahii
jise muu-e dimaa;G-e be-;xvudii ;xvaab-e zulai;xaa ho

1) what [kind of] arrangements would he make for sight/insight, that martyr of the pain of awareness
2) to whom the dream of Zulaikha would be a 'nose-hair' of/to self-lessness?!


saaz : 'Making, preparing, effecting; feigning'. (Platts p.625)


biinish : 'Seeing, sight; discernment'. (Platts p.211)


aagaahii : 'Information, knowledge, intelligence, acquaintance, cognizance; vigilance'. (Platts p.70)


muu-e dimaa;G : 'Hateful, disagreeable'. (Steingass p.1350)


dimaa;G : 'The brain; head, mind, intellect; spirit; fancy, desire; airs, conceit; pride, haughtiness, arrogance; intoxication; ... —the organ of smell'. (Platts p.526)


That person whom the pain of awareness has martyred-- that is, whom his awareness has ruined-- can he create equipment for sight?! And what does he get from sight-- he to whom even the dream of Zulaikha, if he sees/has it, is a cause of trouble and anxiety to his mind, and he considers even it to be an unstable and trifling affair.

== Asi, p. 194


shahiid-e aagaahii = one who would die for the attainment of mystical knowledge [ma((rifat].

He says that Zulaikha saw/had a dream; the interpretation of it was that she attained union with Joseph. But the person who would see/have that same dream, and its interpretation would be that his remaining enjoyment would become bitter-- would he long for fulfillment?! Or what effort would he make for the attainment of mystical knowledge, when the very thought of the attainment of mystical knowledge would be a disturber of enjoyment and, like a 'nose-hair', would bring about trouble?

== Zamin, pp. 287-288

Gyan Chand:

muu-e dimaa;G = someone who would be an annoyance to a gathering. muu-e dimaa;G-e be-;xvudii = something that would be displeasing to self-lessness.

Zulaikha had seen Hazrat Joseph three times in a dream. The dream of Zulaikha is, so to speak, the best possible dream. Someone likes self-lessness, and does not like consciousness and awareness and knowledge and insight. The self-less one to whom even the best possible dream would be unpleasing, who would feel pain from awareness-- would he worry about biinish (that is, knowledge)?

== Gyan Chand, p. 303


BEKHUDI: {21,6}
DREAMS: {3,3}

For background see S. R. Faruqi's choices. This verse is NOT one of his choices; I thought it was interesting and have added it myself. For more on Ghalib's unpublished verses, see the discussion in {4,8x}.

For extensive discussion of the 'dream of Zulaikha', see {194,5}.

Who exactly is the martyr 'of' the pain of awareness? The powerful versatility of the i.zaafat means that it could be someone who already has awareness, and has suffered from it (Asi's reading); or it could be someone who would be ready to suffer in order to attain awareness (Zamin's reading).

Moreover, the verse evokes no fewer than four states of consciousness: discernment or insight [biinish]; awareness or cognizance [aagaahii]; a mystically visionary dream state [;xvaab-e zulai;xaa]; and self-lessness or self-transcendence [be-;xvudii]. This is almost an embarrassment of riches; it's like trying to juggle with too many (hopelessly abstract) balls at once. (Additionally, there's the terrific wordplay with dimaa;G as 'mind'; see {11,2} for discussion.)

Roughly, Gyan Chand's common-sense reading would amount to something like 'Would he seek out insight-- the person who has suffered from the pain 'of' awareness, the person to whom even a mystically truthful, divinely-sent dream like Zulaikha's would be merely a bothersome disturbance to his self-lessness?'

That question can be a genuine question-- or, thanks to the good offices of the 'kya effect', it can be a strongly affirmative exclamation ('How he would seek for insight!'), or an indignantly negative one ('As if he would seek for insight!'). And depending on how we frame the relationships among those four abstract states of consciousness, any of these readings could quite well be made to work.

But the real reason that I chose to include this verse was because of the grotesquerie, the morbid fascination, of its including in its lofty and abstract meditation on states of consciousness-- a 'nose-hair'. Obviously, it's there for the wordplay of dimaa;G in its more common meaning of 'mind'. For more on 'nose-hair' verses, see {42,8x}. It kind of brings the abstractions down to earth, doesn't it?