Monday, October 4, 2010

Mirza Sahiba by Arif Lohar

Packed with energy this recital by Arif Lohar has a classic wild climax that is not to be missed. This guy from Lahore is a piece of work :-) .

MirzaSahiba is a treasure of Punjabi literature. It is a romantic tragedy. Sahiba was a love-lorn soul. Shayer Pillo raves about her beauty and says," As Sahiba stepped out with a lungi tied around her waist, the nine angels died on seeing her beauty.

Mirza and Sahiba were childhood playmates and both were born in Jat family [1], as mentioned in many books and folk tales in punjab,and they fell in love with each other. But when this beauty is about to be wedded forcibly to Tahar Khan by her parents, without any hesitation she sends a taunting message to Mirza, whom she loves, to his village Danabad, through a Brahmin called Kammu.

"You must come and decorate Sahiban’s hand with the marriage henna.....

Mirza Khan was the son of Wanjhal Khan, the leader of the Kharal tribe in Danabad, a town in the Jaranwala area of Faisalabad, Pakistan. Sahiba was the daughter of Mahni, the chief of Khewa, a town in Sial Territory in the Jhang district Punjab. Mirza was sent to his relatives' house in Khewa to study, where he met Sahiba and they fell in love. Her family opposed the relationship, and instead arranged a marriage with a member of the Chadhar family.

This is the time you have to protect your self respect and love, keep your promises, and sacrifice your life for truth. Mirza arrived on his horse, Bakki the night before the wedding and secretly carried her away, planning to elope. Sahiba's brothers got to know about this and decided to follow them. On the way, as Mirza lies under the shade of a tree to rest for a few moments, Sahiba's brothers and chanders caught up with them.

Sahiba was a virtuous and a beautiful soul who did not desire any bloodshed to mar the one she loved. She did not want her hands drenched in blood instead of henna. She knew Mirza was a great archer and he will not miss his target, and if he strikes, her brothers would surely die. Before waking up Mirza, Sahiban breaks his arrows so he can't use them. She presumes on seeing her, her brothers would feel sorry and forgive Mirza and take him in their arms. But the brothers and chanders attack Mirza and kill him. Sahiban takes a sword and slaughters herself and thus bids farewell to this world.

Out of all the legendary stories, mirza sahiba's story is the only story where the guy's name comes first and then the girl's. all others start with girl's name for example: Heer Ranjha, Sassi Punnun, Sohni Mahiwal, Laila Majnu. actually theother folk love stories where the guy's name comes first as (Yousaf khan Sherbano)(Mosa khan Gul maky)(Umar Marvi).

Innumerable folk songs of Punjab narrate the love tale of Sassi and Punnu. The women sing these songs with great emotion and feeling, as though they are paying homage to Sassi with lighted on her tomb. It is not the tragedy of the lovers. It is the co ly believed that the soil of the Punjab has been blessed. God has blessed these lovers. Though their love ended in death, death was a blessing in disguise, for this blessing is immortalized.

Waris shah who sings the tale of Heer elevates mortal love to the same pedestal as spiritual love for God saying," When you start the subject of love, first offer your invocation to God". This has always been the custom in Punjab, where mortal love has been immortalized and enshrined as spirit of love.

Just as every society has dual moral values, so does the Punjabi community. Everything is viewed from two angles, one is a close up of morality and the other is a distant perspective. The social, moral convictions on one hand give poison to Heer and on the other make offerings with spiritual convictions at her tomb, where vows are made and blessings sought for redemption from all sufferings and unfulfilled desires.

But the Sassis, Heers, Sohnis and others born on this soil have revolted against these dual moral standards. The folk songs of Punjab still glorify this rebelliousness.

"When the sheet tear, It can be mended with a patch: How can you darn the torn sky? If the husband dies, another one can be found, But how can one live if the lover dies?"

And perhaps it is the courage of the rebellious Punjabi woman, which has also given her a stupendous sense of perspective. Whenever she asks her lover for a gift she says,

"Get a shirt made for me of the sky And have it trimmed with the earth"


Heer Ranjha (Punjabi: ਹੀਰ ਰਾਂਝਾ, ہیر رانجھا, hīr rāñjhā) is one of the four popular tragic romances of the Punjab. The other three are Mirza Sahiba, Sassi Punnun and Sohni Mahiwal[citation needed]. There are several poetic narrations of the story, the most famous being 'Heer' by Waris Shah written in 1766. It tells the story of the love of Heer and her lover Ranjha. Well-known poetic narrations have also been written by Damodar Das Arora, Mukbaz and Ahmed Gujjar, among others.

Heer is an extremely beautiful woman, born into a wealthy Jat family of the Sayyal clan in Jhang, Punjab (Pakistan)). Ranjha (whose first name is Dheedo; Ranjha is the surname), also a Jat of the Ranjha clan, is the youngest of four brothers and lives in the village 'Takht Hazara' by the river Chenab. Being his father's favorite son, unlike his brothers who had to toil in the lands, he led a life of ease playing the flute ('Wanjhli'/'Bansuri'). After a quarrel with his brothers over land, Ranjha leaves home. In Waris Shah's version of the epic, it is said that Ranjha left his home because his brothers' wives refused to give him food. Eventually he arrives in Heer's village and falls in love with her. Heer offers Ranjha a job as caretaker of her father's cattle. She becomes mesmerised by the way Ranjha plays his flute and eventually falls in love with him. They meet each other secretly for many years until they are caught by Heer's jealous uncle, Kaido, and her parents Chuchak and Malki. Heer is forced by her family and the local priest or 'mullah' to marry another man called Saida Khera.

Ranjha is heartbroken. He wanders the countrtyside alone, until eventually he meets a 'jogi' (ascetic). After meeting Baba Gorakhnath, the founder of the "Kanphata"(pierced ear) sect of jogis, at 'Tilla Jogian' (the 'Hill of Ascetics', located 50 miles north of the historic town of Bhera, Sargodha District, Punjab), Ranjha becomes a jogi himself, piercing his ears and renouncing the material world. Reciting the name of the Lord, "Alakh Niranjan", he wanders all over the Punjab, eventually finding the village where Heer now lives.

The two return to Heer's village, where Heer's parents agree to their marriage. However, on the wedding day, Heer's jealous uncle Kaido poisons her food so that the wedding will not take place. Hearing this news, Ranjha rushes to aid Heer, but he is too late, as she has already eaten the poison and died. Brokenhearted once again, Ranjha takes the poisoned Laddu (sweet) which Heer has eaten and dies by her side.

Heer and Ranjha are buried in Heer's hometown, Jhang. Lovers and others often pay visits to their mausoleum.

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