Edited by Muhammad Ridwaan & Mohsin Abbas
Moving songs of mystical poetry, in word and rhythm, which but emphasize the Divine Oneness, are the focus of this work. Allah Most High says, ʿAnd the remembrance of Allah is by far greatest’ (Koran 29:45), whose remembrance of man is supremely greater than man’s remembrance of Him. For the past century in the Levant, sheikhs of the path have wrought the means for their brethren to collectively reflect this remembrance back to the Divine; namely, the hadra or public dhikr of the Hashimi-Darqawi Order. The present anthology, Nasim al-wasl [The zephyr of being there], captures this living tradition.
The book has eight parts. The first seven represent the maqams or musical modes under which the qasidas of the hadra and their primary melodies fall. Each part is further divided into two: rukuʿ or bowing, and qiyam or standing, demarcating the main segments of the hadra. Qasidas, as well as the seven parts, are arranged in Arabic alphabetical (hija’i) order throughout. For both experienced singers and those developing their repertoire, this accessible layout allows for medleys of any given shawt or segment to be formed easily. The final part is a representative treatment of the most common mufradat or solos that Sheikh ʿAbd al-Rahman al-Shaghouri, as spiritual guide (murshid) and head vocalist (munshid) for over half a century, had seen delivered, furnishing the qiyam segments. It also includes many of the latter’s own compositions, recommended by his disciple and co-editor of his diwan, Dr Mahmoud Masri.
This anthology faithfully presents a vibrant, thousand-year-old tradition, offering a vista unto hearts that have been polished by the remembrance of Allah.