Chapter 6. The dark hell of Saturn: Javid Nama by Allama Iqbal

Chapter 6. The dark hell of Saturn: Javid Nama by Allama Iqbal

The Ocean of Blood

“Brave traveler, are you looking at the planet that has stolen the tail of a comet and made its girdle?” Rumi asked me, pointing at Saturn. “This planet moves so slow that it almost appears static. All good becomes bad here and countless angels are whipping this planet with thunder since the day of creation. This is a world rejected by the heavens and dim sunlight darkens its day. It is the abode of spirits who will not be resurrected ever again, such as those two monsters who killed the soul of their nation for the sake of their own comforts. I mean Jaffar of Bengal and Sadiq of Deccan – shame for humanity, religion and country. Through their treachery India became slave to foreigners and the Muslims, who had freed other nations from tyranny became subjects of tyranny themselves.”

I cannot describe what I saw. My senses begin to fail me whenever I think of it again. It was an ocean of blood, vast and extensive, and overridden by storms inside and out. Instead of sharks it had winged snakes in its air with heads as black as the night and silver hair. The waves of the ocean were leaping forward like leopards and their fear had killed the sharks, which now lay dead on the coasts. Even those coasts weren’t peaceful because the rocks were continuously falling on them. Amid the waves of blood I saw a boat. There seated in it were two men whose faces were pale, bodies naked and hair scattered.

Suddenly, the sky split open and out came a beautiful celestial bride. Glow and magnificence of God was shining on her forehead while her eyes were the pride of the heavens. The fiber of her dress was made of rose petals and was more delicate than clouds. However, she was chained like a slave and crying out for help in a painful voice.

“This is the soul of India,” Rumi said to me, “Her cries are heart rending.”

“The Indians are not bothered about the dignity of their land anymore,” the bride was crying out, “They are unknown to themselves. They have fixed their glance on their past and expect heat of passion from an extinguished flame! I am chained because of them, and distressed. They have emptied their existence of their pride and have formed prisons of ancient customs. Beware of practices that deprive you of the world. God save us from making patience a habit! Oppression is poison to the oppressor and the oppressed both. When will the day of freedom dawn upon India? Jaffer died but his soul is alive!”

One of the two men in the trembling boat in the ocean of blood started lamenting. “Sigh! Life and death alike have rejected us,” he was wailing, “After our death we arrived at the doors of Hell in pain but it refused to burn us. ‘I want my blaze to be pure of these infidels,’ it said. We traveled to the other end of the heavens to Death, but it said, ‘The soul is among my secrets. You must ward off for the soul of a treacherous will not find peace in deaths.’ O strong wind! O the ocean of blood! O earth! O blue sky! O stars! O moon! O sun! O pen! O the knowledge of the unseen! O book! O white idols! O lords of the West! Is their no master who would take a traitor as his slave?”

Suddenly a frightful voice was heard. The oceans and the deserts had been slit open. Every joint was loosened and rocks started falling on each other. Mountains flew away like clouds, as if the end of the world had come unannounced. Lightning and thunder descended the ocean of blood with all rage, waves rose higher than themselves and sheets of blood covered everything.

The caravan of stars looked at this all and passed by unconcerned.

 

Continue to Chapter 7, Beyong the Skies

 

Republished with permission and compliments of Khurram Ali Shafique, Editor Javidnama [Junior Edition Series] and Iqbal Cyber Library. 

 

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