Allama Iqbals Idea Of The
Allama Iqbal can be regarded as one of the poets who simply did not fix his ideas and works on certain themes but had always kept the variety of goals and discussions in front of him. He talked of almost everything ranging from God, man, nature, religion etc and in his poem “Modern Man” we see him defining the man in the new world he has created around himself. This has been compared with the poem “God and Man”, where Iqbal shows both the God and the man conversing and answering each other.
It is clear how evolution takes place in every age and every stage of human life. Every civilization improves and progresses and thinks itself better than the past one. Hence through all these times progress is achieved, new ideas adopted, unknown things discovered therefore modernity is seen through all the existing times. Here we see Iqbal particularly talks of the “man” and related everything to him. Just like the modern and the post-modern writers like Qasmi, Manto, Shamsie talk of humans, their suppressed desires, hidden conflicts and dilemmas, Iqbal here throws light not only on the negative side but also on the positive aspects of human life. This is clearly visible in both these poems.
With this as base it is for the readers to observe how Iqbal desired for the progress of human race as he did acknowledge the work done. It also depicts that checks and balance are definitely necessary to keep one’s life stable and successful; everything has its flaws which should be looked upon.This short poem consists of eight lines. There is a lot of repetition of words like “could not” and “no” which depict the negativity and the incapability, in “God and Man” he uses another kind of pessimistic imagery of “gun”, “arrowhead”, “cage” and “sword” etc, thus presenting the darker side. He has made this poem so complete in itself by using immense imagery and descriptive words. He compares a human “mind” to a “snake” which is definitely a stark contrast on one side whereas on the other hand this becomes a possible occurrence.
Snakes are often silent and strike others off guard, similarly a mind can easily be bent towards the devilish and useless side whereas it can also be a source of invention and benefit as in his poem “God and Man”, man responds by saying how he created “lamp” for the “night”, “mirror” out of “stone” and “cup” from “clay”. Iqbal talks of the uncontrollability and the taking over of a mind on a human being so completely hat it becomes difficult to come out of its dictation. Man often becomes a slave to his thoughts. With this comes the dilemma of the modern man where he is caught in a constant spiral of choices and decisions. We can also relate this to the character of “Aasmaani” in Kamila Shamsie’s “Broken Verses” where her mind is not read to accept the reality and she has no control over it.
The beginning words “love fled” introduce us to the sensitive and romantic side of Iqbal, use of the word “love” shows the significance he attaches with it. It portrays that evil prevails where there is no love. He makes use of cosmic images like “orbits”, “stars”, “sunrays”, “sunrise” etc and a lot of natural imagery like “garden tree”, “singing bird”, “mountain-peak”, “flower-bed” in “God and Man”. Again we see his dominant side towards nature, its beauty and its essence.
He also mentions a lot of combinations of words depicting opposite nature and meaning, such as “travel”, “tracked” coming with words like “captive” and “labyrinth”, thus portraying his vastness of views.He talks of the futility of a man’s works and deeds which seem so great on the outer side but at times are of no help. His poem “God and Man” reads “You shaped the axe to hew the garden tree, you wove the cage to hold the singing bird” thus showing the possible living agony man can create for himself and others around him. He is not just blaming men for being selfish and hollow from the inside but comments on the hollowness of his works too.
The idea of industrialization and its affects can also be brought in, where man gives so much to the world and participates in industrializing it that he forgets how all that becomes poison for him one day, his own values and morals also become mechanic, therefore turning a man into a machine as his poem says “Lost count of good and evil”. We can also relate the story “Great God Gun” as well as T.S.Eliot’s poem “Hollow men” to this notion, simply screening the bowed mankind towards power, wealth and justice and ethics downplayed. Human has become hollow from inside and is a devil in his own clothes harmful to his own self which can be taken as his tragedy.
Iqbal says “He tracked the orbits of the stars, yet could not, Travel his own thoughts’ world;” presenting the idea of the inability of a man to conquer himself and solve his own mystery and thus giving in to his animalistic desires which are unleashed to the highest degree.Idea of “life” has also been presented towards the last line of the poem with the concept of “light” and “darkness”. Iqbal illustrates how we humans capture so much of the sun rays but it just cannot illumine our lives, proving that no external source of light ever illuminates ones life. There has to be a revival of the heart and the soul, effort and hard work have to be done on the inner side. Only in this way can man help himself and the world and achieve bliss.Iqbal in his quote states: “A wrong concept misleads the understanding; a wrong deed degrades the whole man, and may eventually demolish the structure of the human ego.
” And in another one: “But inner experience is only one source of human knowledge.”With this we come to terms with the situations, their causes and also their results which lead to behaviors which also surprise us at times. The process of thinking and reasoning is definitely given significance before some act shatters the life and dreams of an individual. The spiritual journey is also highlighted in the second quote. The importance of man being created by God, and his subjugation towards Him does come in and its acceptance is rightly important on a human’s part.
Deceptive concepts have created the lawlessness in the life of a modern man. The passion and instinct should better be ruled before they rule us. Everything in this world and man himself with his efforts is heading towards achieving some goal or the other which needs the assistance of morals and values, thus we should get rid of the demi-gods and the insanity of power the world worships. The modern man caught in this world punctuated with social, political and financial crisis which give the gift of a never-ending worry to the human heart. Ignorance breeds fear and fear breeds oppression at all levels. Speaking specifically, Iqbal was frustrated by the lack of movement in the intellectual and spiritual life of people.
His fiery dream was to regenerate the fire of the unique human personality on the path of creative growth, repair and renewal, as he says: ‘The stars tremble in their courses over man’s upward march, Lest this fallen star should become the perfect moon.’