Bandeya Ho..


Baba Bulleh Shah (a Sufi saint-poet from the Punjab part of Pakistan) was coaxed by his relatives to leave his 'Mursheed' or guru whom he called 'Raiyaan' or 'Raaniya". His Guru, the famous saint Shah Inayat Qadri belonged to the 'Arain' or 'Raeen' caste, while Bulleh Shah belonged to the Syed caste (he was a direct descendant of the Prophet Muhammad). Bulleh Shah had to face the resentment and taunts of his family and other 'Syed' friends for accepting the spiritual guidance of a non-Syed. Bulleh Shah rejected his critics' false concept of inherent superiority and nobility of any caste through his poetry.
A particularly striking song Bandeya Ho of the Pakistani movie Khuda Ke Liye(In the name of God),takes the lyrics of a poem Bulleh Shah wrote as an answer to the society.He explains through this poem that whoever calls him 'Syed' will be punished in hell and who ever calls him 'Raaniya' will be showered with blessings...because for him his Guru is everything and his caste is now the same as his Guru's.
The poem talks of the equality of men,as well as imploring mankind for its preposterious attitude while taking the cover of religion and sanity.The lines,in Siraiki and Punjabi,roughly translated,follow thus:

Bulleh nu samjhawan aiyaan bhena te bharjhaiyaan
Manlay Bulleya sada kehna chad de palla raiyaan
Bulleh Shah's sisters and sisters-in-laws came to convince him. Bulleya, please do as we tell you and leave the Arain's (his guru’s) company.

Aal nabi ullad Nabi nu tu kyun leekaan laaiyaan
Jera sanu syed sadday dozakh milan sazaiyaan
(Bulleh Shah replies):
Why do you separate the Prophet's and Ali's decendants from the common people (why do you wedge a divide between the two)?
The one who calls me ‘Syed’ will go to hell, but the one who calls me ‘Arain’ will enjoy the comforts of heaven


Bandeya Ho Bandeya
Bandeya Ho
Bandeya Ho Bandeya
Bandeya Ho
Imploring mandkind...(Banda means man, while Bandeya refers to Mankind)

Raeen saain sabhan thaain rab diyaan be parwaiyaan
Sohniyaan pare hataiyaan te khoojiyaan lay gall laiyaan
Arain and masters are born at every place, God does not discriminate against anyone.
Beautiful people don't care for such differences, only the ugly ones do


Je tu loorain baag baharaan chaakar hoo ja raiyaan
Bulleh Shah di zaat ki puchni shakar ho razaiyaan
If you seek to the gardens of heaven, become a servant to the ‘Arains’. Why ask about the caste of Bulleh Shah? Instead be grateful in the God's will.

Bandya Ho Bandya
Bandya Ho...
Bandya Ho Bandya
Bandya Ho...

Another awesome Bulleh Shah poem Bulla Ki Jana was made into a song by one of my favourite artists,Rabbi Shergill in his debut album Rabbi.Watch it,the video is a beautiful one too.

5 people decided to speak up:

priyankjain said...

haha..what he said many years ago..still holds true and the poetry is so inspiring.

Thanks for the translation..tho being a native hindi speaker..i felt, if u reiterate his poem over n over, u instinctively understand the meaning; such is the power of this poetry!

pranny said...

awesome song

ADAMANSKA said...

Awesome explanation. Thanks

Anonymous said...

The timeless poetry and message of Bulleh Shah is unfortunately not transalated and taught in school books in India. The power , beauty and mysticism of his words are now reaching out slowly through the songs sung by Nusrat and other sufi and sufi-pop musicians.

This man lived in a time when orthodox islam was crushing the peaceful and all humanity embracing covenant that sufi's sought from God and thus inspired , wrote such powerful sufiana kalams inspiring acceptance , tolerance and seeing God's beauty in this life , rather than in an imaginary jannat.Such is the power of his poetry , that is survived the test of time , hardline mullahs , fatwas and persistent criticism and censorship through the last 300 years.Long live his message of peach and tolerance.Bulleh Shah di kalam nu zindabad.

-Chandrasekhar

Anonymous said...

thanx a ton...

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