Decades go by and it is just once that a philosopher like Iqbal is born. Pakistan remembered Allama Muhammad Iqbal on his 146th birthday, paying tribute to the legend whose message, poetry, and vision have endured the test of time. Dedicated centres all across the world in the name of Iqbal are proof that the world has surrendered and history has locked the mighty poet’s name as the bearer of a strong message – a message that will remain alive till humanity does. Poet philosopher, Iqbal, uncovered the depths of spirituality for all those who seek.
For Pakistan, Iqbal’s relevance cannot be overstated. For the world, Iqbal is a great philosopher of the 20th century but for Pakistan, he is one of the founding fathers. This means that we have to rise up and grow as a nation in the vision of Iqbal. His ideas of ‘reliance on self’ and ‘dignity’ helped Muslims organise a movement of mass self-actualisation. To put it simply, the independence struggle of Muslims of the sub-continent would have been only half-done had it not been for Iqbal driving it ideologically.
Today, we need his light just as much; to have our priorities straight and to cope with the challenges facing us as a country. Messages of caretaker Prime Minister, Anwaar ul Haq Kakar, and the President, Dr Arif Alvi, stressed the same. They rightly revisited his concept of “khudi” and unity among Muslims. Youth’s reconnect with Iqbal is also very much needed. Caretaker Interior Minister, Murtaza Solangi, regarded Allam Iqbal as a beacon of light for humanity. Pakistanis can benefit from his teachings of unity and tolerance.
As a nation, we have been lucky to find our independent, free country in the nurturing of such figures who will be placed on a high moral pedestal till the end of times. Now it is upon us to hold this chain of legacy tight as we focus our efforts on inclusive progress. Our nationhood must be grounded in the philosophy of Iqbal and we must re-acquaint ourselves, and the generations to come, with it.