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Dr. Allama Iqbal, the Pioneer of Urdu Poetry

The Godfather of Urdu poetry, Dr. Allama Iqbal gave an all new direction to Urdu poetry. He was the man who gave words to the expressions in a rich literary manner. Besides Urdu and Persian poetry, this great poet has also contributed towards English literature.

Dr. Allama Iqbal who was regarded as the pioneer of Urdu poetry is an inspiration for the youth of Pakistan. The legend wasn’t just a poet; he was the one who dreamt of modern Pakistan. He is known for holding a great mystical vision, one who can visualize the future. With his vast Islamic spiritual knowledge base, he gave an all new direction to the Urdu poetry. He was the man who gave words to the expressions in a rich literary manner. Iqbal was the master of mystic, philosophy and religious tradition. In his poetry, he presented all that was best for Islamic thought and culture.

The Godfather of Urdu poetry, Dr. Allama Iqbal is the best expressed Muslim response to modernity that the Islamic world has produced. The poetry that he had wrote in Urdu and Persian languages present the best picture of poetically mediated thought. With his great wisdom, he combined tradition with Islamic literature and gave birth to contemplative poetry or inspired poetry in the modern times.

His works outline the broad range of his interests such as religion, philosophy, art, politics, and economics. But his prime interest was to promote Muslim tradition and culture and universal brotherhood of man.

The first collection of his Urdu poetry Bang-e-Dara (The Call of the Marching Bell) was published in the year 1924. This poetry collection was all about the different phases of Iqbal’s life wrote till the year 1923.

The first part of the collection includes the poetry that he wrote till the year 1905. It was all about patriotism and imagery of nature, which includes Tarana-e-Hind (The song of India), and Tarana-e-Milli (The song of the Community).

Iqbal wrote the second set of Bang-e-Dara, when he traveled to Europe for his higher studies between the years 1905-1908. There the poet got influenced by the western culture and thought to give words to his turmoil emotions. The poems that he wrote in this period show his praise towards the rationality and practicality of the West. But, on the other hand he also complained about the materialistic thinking of the west. In his works, he clearly mentioned that western people have lost spirituality.

In the third set which was written between 1908 and 1923, Iqbal tried to jog the memory of his Muslim fellows about the sacrifice of their ancestors. Through his poems, he requested for the brotherhood and unity to melt away territorial boundaries from the mind. He also appreciated the spiritual and religious values of Muslims from universal perspective. With his poetry, he paid homage to the historical and cultural heritage of Islam.

His prose was not restricted to his national languages. Besides Urdu and Persian poetry, he also contributed towards English literature. His various lectures and letters in English have been very influential in cultural, social, religious and political disputes over the years. Two of his English books exhibit his mastery of over the western language. He had the ability of shaping up his thoughts and feelings into verse. Be it any language, his prose were enough to uplift the soul of the readers. His poetry was his medium par excellence of expression. Therefore, in the year 1922, he was honored by King George V, who gave him the title "Sir".

About Author:
Sanjiv is an author of this article, where he mentioned about famous poet Dr. Allama Iqbal and his contribution in Urdu poetry. Sanjiv is communication coordinator of Rekhta & having deep interest in Poetry, Gazal & other music activities.