Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Man Kunto Maula - Zila Khan (Lyrics, Translation)

I had mentioned earlier in the song Kinara by Atif Aslam about this poem by Amir Khusro. Which is undoubtedly so beautiful and so famous that it has been sung by many great singers like Sabri brothers, Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, Zila Khan, Farid Ayaz, Abida Parveen and the line man qunto maula has been used in a numerous songs e.g Kinara (coke studio version), Satinder Sartaj and many more.

More than a song it is famous as a qawwali. And in most of the traditional qawwali gatherings this work of Amir Khusro is always performed. This particular Qawwali often throws people into ecstasy and can be even witnessed in present days at any Qawwali gatherings.

Amir Khusro was a mystic sufi poet of 13th century in India. He is termed as father of qawwali and is also known to invent what is known as Indian Tabla. He wrote his poetry mainly in Persian and sometimes in Hindavi.

The first line Man Kunto Maula is a Hadith (A saying of prophet Muhammed) and  This was made on returning back from the Last Pilgrimage of the Prophet (year 632, just months before his passing), he stopped at a place called Ghadir Khum and delivered a sermon. The statement therein for the sufis is the confirmation of spiritual transmission in the path (leaving aside later politicized history related to it and giving rise of party of Ali, known as shiite e Ali).

I am writing for Zila Khan Version which I love the most and hope you too like it.

Man kunto maulaa (X2)
Fa haaza Aliun maulaa, (X2)
Man kunto maulaa

Man kunto maula (X4)
Fa haaza Aliun maulaa (X2)
Man kunto maula (X4)

[To whom I am the master,
Ali is the master too.]

Ali imaam-e-manasto manam Ghulaam-e-Ali,
Hazaar jaan-e-giraamii fidaa-e-naam-e-Ali.

[Ali is the master of all, I am the slave of Ali,
A thousand lifes I sacrifice for Ali.]

Man kunto maula (X4)

Daaraa dil daaraa dil daar-e-daanii
Hum tum taa naa naa naanaa, naanaa naanaa re
Yaalaalii yaalaalii yaalaa, yaalaa yaalaa
Yala la la la la, la la la la li (X2)

[Asks God to enter into the heart and then 
Sufi chants, which is actually the music played in heart when God has entered]

Man kunto maula (X2)

Shaah-e-mardaaN, Sher-e-yazdaaN, Quvvat-e-parvardigaar. (X2)
Laa fataa illaa Ali, Laa saif illaa zulfiqaar.

[King of the brave,
Lion of God,
Strength of God.
There is no one like Ali (and),
There is no sword like Zulfiqaar.]

Man kunto ..(3) Maula
Man kunto maula

Nami danam chi manzil bood shab jaay ki man boodam;
Baharsu raqs-e bismil bood shab jaay ki man boodam.

[I know not what that place was, where I was last night.
All around me were half-slaughtered victims of love, tossing about in agony.]
raqs-e-bismil means raqs=dance, bismil is the name to the lamb which is about to be slaughtered in the name of Allah. so raqs-e-bismil is the twitching of the lamb while being slaughtered.

Pari paikar nigaar-e sarw qadde laala rukhsare;
Sarapa aafat-e dil bood shab jaay ki man boodam.

[A fairy-faced lover, cypress-like in stature, cheeks ruddy like tulips.
Ruthlessly playing havoc with the hearts of the lovers.]

Khuda khud meer-e majlis bood andar laamakan Khusrau;
Muhammad shamm-e mehfil bood shab jaay ki man boodam.

[God Himself was the host of that gathering inside that heavenly place, Khusraw!
Muhammad was the light of that gathering]

Man kunto maula (X4)
Fa haaza Aliun maulaa, (X2)
Man kunto(X3)  maula
Man kunto maula

After you have listened to the song I am sure you must have found it echoing inside your heart. specially the lines Daaraa dil daaraa dil, dare-e-daani and yala la la la la la, la la la la lii. Actually I always end up singing these tunes along with the song, the desire to sing along is uncontrollable. Simply beautiful poem.

Also the last three stanzas are from a different poem by Khusro.

Hope you liked it Please Share and your comments/suggestions are welcomed. Feel free to contact us.

P.S. Will post the complete poem soon!! :)
Also Like us on facebook we need more fans.


  1. awesome... maulaai kalam indeed touches the soul.. coz thats Haq :)
    nice work with the translation :)

  2. great super work love u zila khan and amir khsoro .
    ma mula bless on you

  3. nice very nice
    thanks for the translation

  4. Thanking u for giving information and translation too

  5. sufi songs always have atleast two meanings, lower and higher, purer..