My brother Qasim brought to my attention an inspiring nasheed version of a timeless classic- Tarana-e-Milli, the celebrated poem of Iqbal on the Muslim nation [download here]. It is a simple message that rings as true today as it did in those neocolonial days that witnessed the dawn of Islamic revival and thought. Oh, let this message ring once more . . .
China and Arabia is ours, India is ours
We are Muslims and the whole world is our homeland
The treasure of tawhid is in our hearts,
It is not easy to wipe out our name and mark.
The first house we have liberated from idols is the Ka’abah;
We are its custodians, and she is our protector
We have grown up in the shadows of swords,
Our mascot is the crescent shaped dagger
Our prayer calls have reverberated in the valleys of the west,
The force of our flow could not be stopped by anyone
O the skies! we will not be subdued by falsehood,
You have tried (our steadfasteness) a hundred times!
O, the garden of Andalusia! do you remember those days –
When our abode was the nest on your branches?
O, the waves of Tigris! surely, you recognize us –
Your river tells our tales even to this day
O, the pure land! we have bled and died for your honor,
Our blood flows in your veins until now
The leader of our caravan, is the Prince of Hijaz (Muhammad)
It is his name that keeps our heart in comfort and peace.
Iqbal’s song is a clarion call
For the caravan to rise and continue the journey once more.