The Burda of Imam Busiri
The Poem of the Cloak
Booklet and 3 CD set
Performed by the Fez Singers Featuring Bennis Abddelfettah
English translation and introduction by Hamza Yusuf.
Calligraphy by Mohamed Zakariyya.
Produced by Abdullateef Whiteman.
The Burda by al-Busiri
is arguably the greatest classic poem in the Arabic language in praise of the
character and exalted rank of the prophet Mohammad (peace and blessings be upon
him) composed by Imam al-Busiri in the 13th century CE in Mamluke Egypt it has
been recited ever since throughout Muslim lands from east to west and north to
south, and has always been perceived as containing real benefits.
Performed by the
Fez Singers††Translated and Presented by Hamza Yusuf A beautiful production of
this classical poem put to song, that praises Allah and the Prophet, arguably
the best known work of Islamic literature and song ever written.††Presented here
as a beautiful boxed set of CDs and full colour book with beautiful Arabic
calligraphy by Muhmmad Zakariyya, artist of the Eid Stamp
(from the Introduction) I was compelled to translate The Burda after a trip to
Mauritania in which I realized it was everywhere, on everyone's tongue, always
present, always ready to ignite the instant, alter the ambience, enhance the
state, bring the presence of the beloved into the room, the tent or wherever we
happened to be. Sitting once with my teacher Abd Allah Ould Ahmadna, I heard for
the first time a line from Imam Busiri, "If Allah places a people in the service
of the serene, then they too become serene." As those words flowed from the
tongue of my serene teacher, I realized in that moment the reason for my
existence; my soul was branded with the power of those words forever. That is
I have heard the Burda many times in many places. In Morocco, I was transported
to another world, a perfect world free of sin, free of vice, free of temptation
and upon leaving the gathering, I felt as if was once again, we were exiled from
the Garden. I have seen Yemenis filled with the same joyful spirit singing in
their own unique way like innocent children freed from fear while praising the
one who on the day all have fear shows none. Once in Madina, two Sudanese sang a
section in a way that brought the poem back to its home, Africa. While it is
sung in Indonesia, Pakistan, India, Turkey, Kosovo, Chechnya, Bosnia, even in
China, it is and always will be from Africa. It is like Africa; as deep as the
oceans that surround her, as powerful as her Nile, as vast as her Sahara and
containing as many lights as a starry desert night in Niger.
Shaykh Hamza Yusuf
was born in Washington State and raised in Northern California. In 1977, he
became Muslim and subsequently traveled to the Muslim world and studied for ten
years in the U. A. E., Saudi Arabia, as well as North and West Africa. He
received teaching licenses in various Islamic subjects from several well-known
scholars in various countries.
After a ten years of studies abroad, he returned to the USA and took degrees in
Religious Studies and Health Care. He has traveled all over the world giving
talks on Islam. He also founded Zaytuna Institute which has established an
international reputation for presenting a classical picture of Islam in the West
and which is dedicated to the revival of traditional study methods and the
sciences of Islam. Shaykh Hamza is the first American lecturer to teach in
Morocco's prestigious and oldest University, the Kairoiuin in Fes.
In addition, he has translated into modern English several classical Arabic
traditional texts and poems
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