Prophet - the Sacred Hero of Huseyin Javid's romanticizm
Classical Bulletin, Special Issue 3, 2018; p. 124-134
In the article the activity of the great Azerbaijan poet of the 20th century Huseyn Javid is investigated. As it is known one of his works is a poetical play, the tragedy “Prophet”, which was written in 1922-23 years. As in his other works the heroes are usually rebellious thinkers, who empathize stressfully and painfully the contradictions of the era. Huseyn Javid was essentially the pioneer of the genre of the verse drama and tragedy in Azerbaijani literature. The philosophical tragedies, the historical and family-life style dramas by H.Javid, due to their exceptional freshness and originality of the creative style marked a new stage in the development of Azerbaijani dramatic art, had the most beneficial effect on the growth of the national stage culture.
In the article all these problems are investigated on the extensive material of the verse drama “Prophet”.
Key words: Huseyn Javid, play, Prophet, mysticism, mythology, romanticism
There is a legendary hero – Sheikh Sanan, the mythic hero – Satan, including the sacred hero – Prophet in Huseyn Javid’s activity who was the prominent representative of Azerbaijan romanticism poet-dramatist. The factors being the cause of formation of the different works about Prophet Muhammad in the world literature also belong to Azerbaijan literature. In the activities of our classical poets such as Nizami Ganjavi, Muhammad Fuzuli the theme Prophet had taken the special part and at the beginning of the 20th century Huseyn Javid wrote the work “Prophet”.
It is known that Prophet Muhammad’s life was not written only by Huseyn Javid. In general, one can see many thoughts about the prophets by the famous philosophers of the world. Among them the German writer Goethe’s thoughts are very interesting. During 1772-1773 years he wrote the tragedy “Muhammad”. One can consider the thought said by Goethe about the Prophet Muhammad very interesting: “In spite of our cultural opportunities we – Europeans – are on the first stage of the stairs climbed by Prophet Muhammad till the end. No doubt, no one will leave him behind in this competition”. Of course, it was told by a great philosopher belonging to the Christian nation, writing in the religious themes and knowing the divine sciences.
One of the most interesting characters in the tragedy “Muhammad” by Goethe was the image “Fatima”. There is no image “Fatima” in the work “Prophet” by Huseyn Javid, but there are the images “Fatima” and “Ali” in the work by Goethe. Even the image “Prophet Muhammad’s wet nurse” was created in the work. The thought to achieve the unity in the work creates the great respect to Goethe in the reader.
No doubt, Huseyn Javid was well-informed about the works by former classics created the characters belonging to God. That is why the tragedy “Sheikh Sanan” was perfect and there was an excellent base of formation prophecy opportunity. It is very interesting that in 1923 Huseyn Javid wrote the work with four parts “Prophet” in Baku, at the same time on the other side of the ocean, in America the great writer of the East Jibran Khalil Jibran also wrote the work “Prophet”. The work “Prophet” written by him is not in the form of drama, it is in the form of essay. There are answers of the questions about the whole miracles, all philosophical categories directed to the Prophet in the work “Prophet” by Jibran Khalil Jibran.
Huseyn Javid’s understanding the Great Allah, sincerely devotion to the Prophet Muhammad began in his adolescence period and the role of that devotion was very important in directing his future fate. During the period of Huseyn Javid’s life the old city Nakhchivan and the sacred places met there were estimated as the nearest place of Allah where the prayers were accepted. As Amir Timur told, Nakhchivan was the place of “Hurufi holy place”. The existence of such atmosphere had shown its own importance sufficiently as the initial stage of the way taking Huseyn Rasizade to Javidism. His father Rovzakhan Mashadi Abdulla’s mysterious quatrains created the opportunity to awake the marvelous divine love in his heart and it is impossible to believe it. Seyid Azim wrote in his writing named “To Haji Molla Abdulla Shakhtakhtli” so:
Iragu Isfahani doldurub avazeyi-fazlin,
Verai Mavaraun-Nahra dushmushdur seda senden. (5, p.245)
(Translation: “Your voice has occupied Isfahan of Irag, Your voice is also in Varai Mavaraun-Nahr”).
As Huseyn Javid’s soul was rewarded by the Divine Love during his adolescence period and showed itself the devotion to the philosophy “truth and love” would find its confirmation absolutely and that desire was realized by the work “Prophet”. When Huseyn Javid was M.Tagi Sidgi’s student he won his teacher’s great confidence as the talented man. In the ghazal written by him is said so:
Gulchini-binava idim, oldum murshidi sheikh,
Yandirmisham man atashi-hijrane konlumu. (2, p. 249)
(Translation: “I was a poor fellow, but became a sheikh, I grieved my heart”)
So, beginning from his first pen practices he overturned the unity thinking God and human, Allah and creation as the high idea of the main aim of his activity. In Huseyn Javid’s activity the human fate, happiness, kindness search rising always in the peace light and in the progress of the humanity go towards the understanding the justice. Kamran Aliyev writes in his work “A look at the literature history”: “Huseyn Javid has combined such a human personality and a poet in his name that the justice has stood in the centre of this unity” (3, p.163).
Huseyn Javid wrote the work “Prophet” which could bring the fame into the world literature in his 41 year in 1923. From the richness of the work with the historical facts, including the author’s sincerely attention to the heaven books presented to the human history it is seen that Huseyn Javid had read many literature examples about the Islam religion and the previous books of that religion.
In Nizami Ganjavi’s, Mohammad Fuzuli’s, in the epos “The Book of Dede Gorgud”, the 15th century Yazichioglu Muhammad’s activity, including in all works by Sufism poets the investigation of the theme Prophet being known to all Muslim world was necessary to be studied. Little by little in Huseyn Javid’s activity the love to Prophet began to rear as the answer of the main idea searches. Addressing the theme of Prophet he could affirm the aim of being the wise, experienced, perfect personality of Javid’s authority. After investigating the world philosophers’, theologians’, the progressive suffists’ attitude to the world, life, including the nations’ religious thinking he decided to write the work “Prophet”. Hanafi Zeynalli writes in the article named “My considerations about the work “Prophet” by Huseyn Javid”: “Not yielding to describe the sphere Prophet in the punctual and masterly form I shall not go on. One can see this sphere only in the drama “Prophet” clearly”. (6, p.29)
It is known that the prophecy can’t be given to everybody. The Prophet is the human elected by God before his birth, their fates have been written before million years. As the last prophet of the world religions Prophet Muhammad in order to eliminate the ignorance of Arabic world, to bring the progressive development characters to the belonging society formed a new religion serving the human ideas.
It can’t be considered accidentally showing the attitude to God during his 12-13 years Huseyn Javid revived the problems about Great God, human, world and formation of it in his great works. Because before he had written the work “Satan” and there was a problem about God and creature. He has also written the tragedy “Sheikh Sanan”, there was a Sufism attitude, the divine love problem in the tragedy. Even it is also necessary to mention that the cognition ways of the divine love were explained. As if such kind of cognition ways had to be revealed in the work “Prophet”. Huseyn Javid inspiring to understand God and the stages of shariat, sect, civility and justice of joining Him affirmed his perfection top. Reaching the prophecy could be only as a result of passing the levels of prophecy such as invitation, emigration, etc. very tormentingly and becoming winner of the great trials.
The prophet’s protest to the society during the period of ignorance was Huseyn Javid’s attitude to the injustice, the political jugglery during the period of his life. Because Huseyn Javid saw that in 1921 the atheism journals were published in Moscow. And Huseyn Javid wrote the work “Prophet” in 1923. As if Huseyn Javid had enchanted the leaders of that period with the love to Divine temporarily. They couldn’t understand the idea in the work “Prophet” by Huseyn Javid, may be they couldn’t understand it. Though Huseyn Javid wrote that his work was not mentioned to be played on the stage, but the work “Prophet” was staged once. Huseyn Javid also showed the faithful enlightened attitude to Islam when the unbelieving regime raised the revolt among the political clowneries of that period. In fact, the reason of writing “Prophet” was that period.
Prophet Muhammad was born in Mecca. In the work “Prophet” by Huseyn Javid it was written that he was born in the honorable family, his generation was very respectful. In the book “Prophet Muhammad’s life” by V.Panova, Y.Vakht it is said that in 560 Abd-al-Mutallim told his son about Abdullah’s life and Gureyishes’ traditions very much and it was also mentioned in the book that there were many respectful people in that tribe.
Prophet Muhammad in his childhood always preferred to sit alone near the mountain Hira. The theme “mountain” and “prophet” had also taken a role in Prophet Musa’s life before Prophet Muhammad. Allah’s appear in the mountain had shown Himself to Prophet Musa in the form of light.
To sit alone, to fall to thinking are considered the first level of the investigations. Loneliness, solitude didn’t depend on him. He had to be distinguished. In the first level of the election in order to look for the answers of his thoughts about the problems of this life, the formation of the life he had to be absorbed in himself. In the work the image of the angel seen to him when he was sitting near the mountain Hira was not accidental. In order to abolish the intellectual darkness trouble of the cognates with the revelation coming from the heavens he had to change, to become pure and stronger.
Prophet’s loneliness is explained by Melek (Angel) so:
Ulu dahi, sen ey boyuk rehber,
Galkh, oyan! Ishte her teref, her yer,
hep tebiet dalib da royaya,
Jelb eder ruhu sheiru sevdaye,
Geje yildizlarile purkhulya,
Seni dinler sukut ichinde feza… (1, p. 172)
(Translation: Hey genius, You are great leader, Stand up, wake up! Every side, everywhere is in a dream, The spirit is attracted by the poems, The night is in the dreams, the space listens to you in a silence…)
Of course, one can think that being tired Prophet can have a dream there. But it is not a dream, in the real sense of the word, seeing Melek (Angel) in front of himself Prophet thinks that he has a dream and asks him with the question “Who are you?”:
Yene royami gorduyum ajeba?
Sen nesin, soyle? (1, p. 172)
(Translation: I wonder, may be I have a dream? What are you, tell me, please?)
It must not be forgotten that, to stay alone, to dream means the way going to the cognition of the investigations in the science of Sufism.
But what is the perfection of the work “Prophet” by Huseyn Javid? In fact, this perfection begins from the first act. It means, the play has been divided into the parts and these parts are named as the followings: “biset” (sending), “devet” (invitation), “hijret” (emigration) and “nusret” (help). These parts match up very much with Prophet Muhammad’s life, it creates the whole imagination about realizing the prophecy mission with the level form and the explanation of the hard work in spreading of Muslim religion.
But what did this virtue mean? Three religious books belonging to the world nations before it appeared, at the same time the unsolved problems had to be realized in the book Quran and the religion of Islam completely. The last religion was the religion of peace, truce, prosperity. It explained the human life and the perfect ways of the Divine cognition in the form of stages. The most important virtues of the world are explained for the human being very clearly and distinctly. Why has the human been created? Why has the human come to the life? What is his/her mission in this life? By whom has he/she been created? By whom has he/she been sent? How has he/she finished the life till the last return? Is the richness of the morality enough to return to the Creator in the innocent form? If all these problems were in the mentality of the human with the explanation of Quran, then those people were virtuous and in the problem of the world cognition those people could demonstrate their positions very bravely (as Javid). The period Prophet Muhammad lived was the top of the intellectual darkness. That is why there were many great problems to be solved in front of Prophet Muhammad.
In the work by Huseyn Javid two main auxiliary means are offered to realize the ideas given to Prophet. One of them is offered by Melek (Angel), the other is suggested by Iskelet.
Melek (Angel) says:
Haggi teblig ichin senin anjag
Rehberin seneti-kelam olajag.
Sachma, hep sachma bashga mojuzeler,
Shu kitab ishte en boyuk rehber:
Behs eder buseden, mehebbetden,
Injiler serper elmu hikmetden. (1, p.177)
(Translation: In order to propaganda the justice, Your leader must be the art of perfection, Wonders are absurd, but this book is the great leader, This book will speak about the kiss and the love, the pearls will be scattered).
In the theology Prophet was named as “Muhammadi-kitabullah” and it means “Muhammad is Prophet who has a book”. In the theology sciences this thought gives the deep meaning. Here he is given a book by Angel. The meaning of the book given by Angel is that you will go forward with the virtue, with this golden book. You will take light to your people, spirits and intellects. The most important means of the struggle will be Quran. If you light this world, this obscurantism with the language of Quran you can light the souls. It will be your leader. Mustafa Haggi Turkakul wrote about it: “Now in order to become a victor Prophet has two important weapons. A book for to convince, a sword for to force… Having both of these weapons Excellency Muhammad is sure to open the eye of the nation with the sacred book, he is also sure that the sword will clean the world from the oppression”. (4)
Iskelet is also an angel and his offer is different:
Ingilab istiyorum, bana bag!
Ishte keskin gilij, kitabi burag.
Parlayib durmadigja elde silah,
Ezilirsin, ganin olur da mubah.
Eylemez yardim inje hikmetler,
Hep soner buseler, mehebbetler.
Evet, anjag gilinjdadir guvvet!
Bundadir hag, sheref ve huriyyet! (1, p. 177)
(Translation: You want a revolution, look at me! Here you are an acute sword, leave the book. If you don’t have a sword, you will be trampled; your blood will be permissible. The fine knowledge can’t help, the kisses and loves will be extinguished. Of course, there is power only in the sword! Justice, honor and freedom are in it!)
The power of the justice, honor and freedom is in the sword. One can achieve it only with the sword. Till that period Prophet Muhammad had tried his strength only in merchantry. He loaded the camels, went to Sham and helped in Khadija’s merchantry works. His physical power could do only it. But how it happened? He had a wrestler power and force. Taking the sword he agreed to take part in battles, he realized the fights. And that power was given by Allah! Prophet Muhammad’s sword is kept in the museum Topgapi. It is said that that sword is very heavy. Where was that power, strength given to him? Where were that sacred writing, book reading and cognition given?
Firstly, Prophet says that “I don’t know any letter”. But in order to resist his heart was changed. In order to achieve this intellect, thinking his brain was renewed with the light. Here one can see a fine idea: Prophet Muhammad was chosen by Allah. Prophet Muhammad was differed with his physical strength and his virtue, thinking, cognition. The way was shown to him. He was given two strengths – the strength of the sword, the other was the power of the science, Quran’s virtue, the book’s strength.
In his childhood Prophet Muhammad’s parents died. Reimbursing the parents’ rights is one of the most important problems in Islam. Prophet Jesus has no parent, he was created by the spirit of Allah. Prophet Muhammad had no parents, he was brought up by his uncle. One can compensate his uncle’s, relatives’, even the wet-nurse’s spiritual rights, but no one can reimburse parents’ rights. In this case it is chosen with two powers – Book’s strength and sword’s power. In order to use the sword he has both the physical and mobilizing power. The word “leader” in the work “Prophet” by Huseyn Javid can express these meanings. There is a fortune of being the victorious leader in Prophet Muhammad’s fate. He had to find a hideout in the book, the book would be his leader. He had been given the power of agitation. He would gather people, propaganda the religion, act as the speaker and organizer. Prophet Muhammad had to carry out the agitation in the formation of the Islam religion.
In the play there is a word combination “Piri-nedim” (“friend”) told by Iskelet. It is interesting that one can also meet this word combination in the work “Sheikh Sanan”. When Prophet asks Iskelet “What are you? Answer!”, he answers “Me? I am piri-nedim” (I am a friend) (1, p. 178)
But Melek (Angel) didn’t agree with it:
Yene bilmem nichin-nichin daldin?
Ne dushundun, nichin shashib galdin?
Sevgiden khoshmu sence ateshi-kin?
Yog, gilij soz qeder deyil keskin.
Tanri kechmishde hep gan isterken,
Shimdi memnun feget mehebbetden. (1, p. 178)
(Translation: I don’t know why you are so thoughtful, What do you think, why are you so confused? Do you think that the fire is better than love? No, the word is much sharper than the sword. Though God always wanted more blood in the past, but know is pleased with the love).
With these words Melek (Angel) fights against Iskelet who calls Prophet to the battle and wants to create the love senses in Prophet’s heart. Melek (Angel) thinks that one can be the leader of the heart only by showing the love to people. In fact, Prophet also thinks so:
Ben mehebbet esiriyem… her an,
Her zaman ozlerim bir oyle jihan
Ki, butun kainati eshg olsun.
Konul oldugja etila bulsun. (1, p. 178-179)
(Translation: I am a prisoner of the love, every time I miss such world. I want all universe have the love, let the soul find peace.)
Here Melek (Angel) prefers the book. The main idea line of Huseyn Javid’s activity finds its affirmation here once more. The master telling “I am a prisoner of love and justice” represents the devotion to his ideal with the help of the character Prophet. There is also conformity that if Huseyn Javid didn’t understand the justice and love, he could never write the work “Prophet”. But, may be, relying on the cognition of love and justice, basing on the definite knowledge and observations of life Huseyn Javid shows the book and the sword together in the work “Prophet”.
With all that, speaking about the universe which is full of love in the play Prophet also uses the word “Satan”:
“Regs edib orda mohteshem bir hiss,
Yasa batsin da, aglasin iblis.
Gandan esla gorulmesin de eser,
Sachsin al goncheler shefegli seher.
Orda yuz bulmasin ishgenje, keder,
Ogshasin ruhu penbe royaler.
Bana gulsun de hep o nazli khayal,
Ah, o. Yalniz o, qayeyi-amal!...” (1, p. 179)
(Translation: The magnificent feeling has danced there, let Satan cry and mourn. Don’t let the blood seen anytime, let the rosy roses blossom in the shining mornings. Don’t meet the torture and grief there. Let the ruddy dreams decorate the spirit. Let the capricious dream always smile. Ohh, he. Only the aim!..)
It is the first opportunity of Prophet Muhammad to cognize Divine. He used the word “Satan”. Yes, Satan exists, being rebellious to Allah it has been turned out from Allah’s acceptance. If Prophet affirms the existing of Satan, it means there is Allah’s cognition in his thinking, and it is the cognition of a great love. He has already Divine love in his heart, soul, thinking and cognition. Melek’s (Angel’s) suggestion is right and the end of this offer can be accepted as the first level of his prophecy.
Many times in the play Prophet is named as “a poet”. Some times this naming is understood ironic, but other time it is mentioned as a reality. Telling this word in two variants doesn’t show its meaning accidentally, here the irony helps to discover the other reality. The expression of the values in such ways is the discovery by Javid. This thought is completed by Prophet’s answer:
Shairim, beslediyim sidgu sefa,
Chirpinib izlediyim nuri-deha.
Daima ruhumu ogshar jeberut,
Sheru ilhamimi dinler melekut.
Ben feget husnu-khuda shairiyim,
Yere enmem de, sema shairiyim. (1, s. 194)
(Translation: I am a poet, abstractness always calms my spirit. My poems are listened by angels, I am a poet of heavens).
These words are the historical thoughts told about Great Prophet and Huseyn Javid’s activity. Being one of the most memorable and decisive opportunities in this part the main essence of Huseyn Javid’s activity, including the personal dignity formula is cleared up. Of course, being far from the processes happened on the Earth, the deficiency of the sphere in the propaganda of the high ideas sent to the humanity by Allah, the difficulties during the socialism period directed to express the poet’s thoughts in such way.
The play “Prophet” also affirms the thought of Huseyn Javid’s activity. It reveals that Huseyn Javid is not only the romantic poet, he always searches truth, justice, love. The play “Prophet” affirms that Huseyn Javid is a master reflecting the romanticism values exceedingly and Huseyn Javid’s activity is the expression of the new philosophical thoughts. Huseyn Javid is a master combining truth, love, Sufism and knowledge in himself. According to his view the events happening on the earth must be fair and they must worship to justice, love. Otherwise what does the comprehensible poet Javid do in the period of lack ethical beauties and faith light, when the morality and ethics become dirty?! That is why Huseyn Javid and his image Prophet are the poets of heavens.
Javid H. Works, in 5 volumes, the 3rd volume, Baku, “Elm”, 2007.
Javid H. Works, in 5 volumes, the 1st volume, Baku, “Elm”, 2005.
Aliyev K. A look at the literature history. Baku, “Elm ve tehsil”, 2013.
Turkekul Mustafa Haggi. “Azerbaijan Turk poet H.Javid. On the occasion of the 80th anniversary”. Istanbul. 1963.
Shirvani S. A. Selected works, in 3 volumes, the 2nd volume, Baku, “Avraasiya press”, 2005, p. 245.
Zeynalli Hanafi. “My considerations about the work “Prophet” written by Huseyn Javid”. Javid-study, the 2nd volume. Baku, 2012, p. 10-63.