Posted: Wed Apr 15, 2009 1:40 pm Post subject: Ginans with Music
I have heard the following sources from several sources:
Council had once asked Hazar Imam (or Mowlana Sultan Muhammad Shah) if they can add music to the Ginans. The Imam had approved, and so we started having Ginans with music. But over time, we started to focus on the music and would alter the raag based on the music. Since we were more focused on the music, instead of the actual Ginan itself, Hazar Imam had prohibited having any more musical Ginans.
Can someone validate the above story? If that is true, then why are there still musical Ginans out there? If this is false, then how did we come about musical Ginans?
This issue can only be decided by the Imam and so far the only document we have seen is one printed at some point in Tanzania by the then Ismailia Association where the Imam wrote that he was happy with ginans on music BUT that no musical instrument are permitted inside the PRAYER HALL. He said it was OK outside the prayer hall.
We have seen Hazar Imam repetitively enjoying ginans with music and Abeeda Parween told me in October 2000 in Karachi that Hazar Imam "ordered" her to sing these... [First she used the word Ijazaat - permisson] then she hesitated and said "hukam kiya" - ordered me.
I know about these "Ismaili Talibans" who go around preaching that music is haram etc... we will always have those, just ignore them and follow whatever source comes from the Imam.
Thanks for the clarification! That is exactly what I originally thought that musical instruments are allowed, but just not in the prayer hall. And when I saw Hazar Imam happily listening to Abida Parveen, I almost became sure of it. But I just needed some clarification. Thanks again!
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Posted: Fri Apr 17, 2009 7:54 am Post subject:
Pir Shams used to play light musical instrument name 'DAFALI' (call small tambourine or Drum in English) whenever he sung Ginans, and now a days sufis using this kind instrument whenever they sing any mystic or other song.
We have to be aware of those who always tried to treat faith in black (haram) and white (halal). It has created conflicts since it tends to label people, favor a group and forsake the many others and has created disrespect and intolerance that has provided fuel for deep roots of grudges and sects. Those that tend to act in the spirit self-appointed authorities of faith (later gather support from like-minded souls) feel they do not need living guidance of Imam of the time. However, as Shia Ismailis, we believe to be directed towards Al-Haq, we must in all respect follow Imam Ali and its progeny. Therefore, Ismailis wholeheartedly follow Imam's farman and hidayat.
In case of ginan Pir Tajddin has said in his ginan "Varan Chatris and Sur Betalis Bhatikia", which essentially means ginans are composed in mulitple languages and tunes. It is in this context I rationally accept its existence with or without musical instrument. Like Munajaat and Qasidas can be sung in Central Asian tradition with Daf/ Rabab, because its has been their tradition. However, can I extrapolate and authorize/forbid such practice in JK prayer hall. Of course not, whom am I kidding - it's only rests with the Imam.
I really enjoy music (ginan included) from Abida Parveen. However, I didnít find Aey Rahem Rahman that touching. I recall an anecdote that I heard from Al-waez Kamaluddin Ali Mohd. He narrated to us that when Imam heard ginan Aaey Rahem Rahman in Garden JK in bhetamini, Imam expressed his happiness and asked recitors to sing the whole ginan. Imam shared that the appealing factor of its rendition were not there in the rendering of the same ginan earlier by Abida Parveen. Also, if I remember, Imam asked, where did she get our ginans? Not sure if it goes back to 1991 visit or ealier than that.
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