Amir Khusro - Turkish or Indian?
Updated: Nov 24, 2021
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Amir Khusro was the first popular poet of the fourteenth century Hindi Khadi Boli (Modified version ) , who composed many Ghazals , Khayal , Qawwali, Rubai and Tarana etc. He was a Sufiyana poet and also a murid (follower and disciple ) of Khwaja Nizamuddin Auliya a prominent sufi saint . To know more about sufi sect please click here His real name was Abul Hasan Yameenuddin Muhammad Amir Khusro Dahlavi . While working in an atmosphere full of religious chauvinism and political deceit, he always acted with sincerity and loyalty for Hindu-Muslim and national unity, love, harmony, humanism and cultural co-ordination.
Amir Khusrau was born in 1253 AD in the town of Patiali in Etah (Uttar Pradesh) on the banks of the Ganges. His father named him 'Abul Hasan'. He was the son of Turk Saifuddin of the Lachan Tribe of Central Asia . Turks of the Lachan tribe had come to India as refugees during the reign of Balban (1266–1286 AD), suffering from the invasions of Changhez Khan.
However, Amir Khusro's place of birth is quite controversial. The most famous in India is that he was born in a place named 'Patiali' in Etah district of Uttar Pradesh. Some people have mistakenly changed 'Patiali' to 'Patiala', though they had no connection with Patiala, yes, they did. Other names of Patiali are also found in Mominpur and Mominabad. His birth in Patiali was first stated by Hamid bin Fazlullah Jamali of Humayun's era in his' Tazkira 'Saarul Arifin'. Later on the basis of that, people kept writing and talking about his birth being Patiali. In almost all books of Hindi, Urdu and English, his birth is considered to be in Patiali itself.
Khusro's mother belonged to a family that was originally Hindu and had accepted the religion of Islam under political pressure from his masters . His mother tongue was Hindi. His maternal grandfather's name was Rawal Emadulmulk. He later became known as Nawab Emadulmulk and became the minister of war of Balban. These were Muslims. All the rituals and rituals in his house belonged to Hindus. They lived in Delhi only. According to some people, these were three brothers in total. The eldest was Izuddin Alyshah who was a scholar of Arabic-Persian, the second was Hisamuddin who was a warrior like his father and the third was Abul Hasan who was a poet and later became famous as 'Amir Khusro'.
Amir Khusro was fond of poetry since childhood. There was an atmosphere of singing and music in Khusro's maternal grandfather. Khusro's maternal grandfather was very fond of eating betel leaves. Later, Khusrau also wrote a masnavi named 'Tambola'. The combination of this mixed family and two traditions impacted Kishore Khusro. They wanted to do something different in life and it really happened.
The black character Rais Nana Imadulmulk of Khusrau and father Amir Saifuddin were both great Sufi seekers of the Chishtiya Sufi sect and devotees or murids of Saint Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya alias Sultanul Mashayakh. All his family had taken his dharma from Auliya Saheb. At that time, Khusro was only seven years old. At the age of seven, Khusro's father died, but Khusrau's education and initiation was not interrupted.
Amir Khusrau had become a disciple of Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya from the age of eight and presumably he started poetic practice only with the inspiration of the Guru. It was the influence of the Guru , the teacher that despite being in the midst of the splendor of the court, Khusro became a mystic Sufi saint with a golden heart. Khusrau has recited his master from the free tongue and recalled him before the emperor in his masnavis.
He received scholarship in philosophy and science of his time, but his talent was poetic in his childhood. As a teenager, he started writing poetry and by the age of 20, he became famous as a poet.
He never disregarded social life. While on one hand he had high imagination typical of an artist, on the other hand he was also proficient in appropriate diplomatic behavior skills of the social life of his time. At that time, the best means of livelihood for senior artists was royalty.
Khusro also spent his entire life in royalty. He saw with his eyes the rise and fall of Ghulams (Mamloom Turks), Khiljis and Tughlaqs - three Afghan dynasties and 11 sultans. Surprisingly, even while continuously staying in the court, Khusrau never took part in the political conspiracies that were essentially at the time of each succession. Khusro continued to be a poet, artist, musician and soldier, keeping himself always detached from political stigma. The greatest proof of Khusrau's practical wisdom is that the murdered heir of the refugee whose gracious and honorable one gave him the same respect and honor. Apart from literature, Khusro also has significant contribution in the field of music. He made a beautiful blend of Indian and Iranian ragas and gave birth to a new raga style Iman, Zilf, Sajgari etc. In Indian singing, qawwali and sitar are considered to be the gift of these. He wrote many puzzles and couplets in Persian and on the lines of the song, combining the words of Arabic Ghazal.
It is said that the tabla is a thousand years old instrument, but in the latest historical narrative, it is said that in the 13th century, the Indian poet and musician Amir Khusro invented the tabla by cutting the Pakhawaj into two pieces.
He was a man of words . Khusro had proficiency in many languages like Hindi, Persian, Turkish, Arabic and Sanskrit, as well as philosophy, theology, history, martial arts grammar, astrology music etc. The credit of learning in so many subjects, Khusro is not only about the lustful nature and tendency, but also after the death of his father, the patronage of Nana Amadulmulk, whose poets, scholars and musicians etc. used to come to the meeting, among whom Khusrau used to get the opportunity of satsangs easily.
Marriage And Children There is no mention about the marriage of Khusrau, but it is certain that he was married. His book 'Laila Majnu' reveals that he had a daughter, who according to the then social instincts, was sad to him. He has addressed his daughter in the said book and said that either you would not have been born or you would have been born as a son. Besides a daughter, he also had three sons, one of whom was Malik Ahmed. It was a poet and was related to the court of Sultan Ferozeshah. Resting In Peace With His Ustaad ( Mentor , Teacher )
The last historical masnavi of Khusro is called 'Tughlaq' which he wrote during the reign of Ghayasuddin Tughlaq and which he dedicated to the same Sultan. Khusro was also involved in the invasion of Bengal along with the Sultan. It was in his absence that his mentor Sheikh Nizamuddin died in Delhi. Amir Khusro could not bear this mourning and within 6 months of his return to Delhi, in 1325 AD, Khusro also ended his illusion with life to unite with the divine foreces . Khusro's tomb was built near Sheikh's tomb.
Some Music Based On His Works Patriotism
He was proud of his motherland India. Describing Indian birds in 'Nuh Siphar', he says that there are no birds in Arabia and Iran like the myna here. Similarly, he has also praised the Indian peacock a lot. Indian creations, philosophy, hospitality, flowers, trees, customs and beauty in many places are praised in many places in his works. He used to call himself as Hindustani (Indian) Turk with great pride.