The most striking example of the late Ugur Mumku’s phrase ‘having an idea without knowledge’ is the attitude shown to the author of the poem ‘Where I see a Muslim, I am afraid’ in Turkey. However, if they know the author’s biography as well as read the poem from beginning to end, they will see which Muslims are afraid of Mirza Ali Ekpar Sabir and maybe they are more afraid of those Muslims …
He was born on May 30, 1862, in the town of Shyamakhi in the Caucasus Mountains to a merchant family. When his father, who was the son of a Sunni family, converted to Shia, he was expelled by his family and the Sunni community in the town of Shamakhi. His father, who did not change his attitude in the face of adversity, rose to prominence in the eyes of the Shia community. He started his primary education in a madrasa. The pressures he saw at school and at family were also reflected in his first pencil effort:
I have fasted in Ramadan
I have two eyes left in the pan
Mollam is beaten when he writes
He was one of those examples. Sayyed Azim Sirvani, one of the most progressive intellectuals of the time, had to leave school unfinished when his father insisted on working when he had the opportunity to improve himself. Despite the demands of his father’s work and the terrible pressure, he did not give up writing poetry. Although he finally left the house because he could not bear the pressure, he returned after his father’s promise, “I will send him on a trip when I grow up.” Sabir, who entered Khorasan at the age of 23, was in several important cities of that geography. When he returned to Shamakhi, he had nine children, eight daughters and a son by his wife. Sabir, who has been making a living by selling soap and cooking for a long time, wrote poems mainly in the genre of ghazals and classical literature. Concerning Russia behind the scenes, he appealed to the two peoples to immediately end the conflict and ensure peace:
I don’t know who the fitnas are, what state they come from.
The mind does not fail, that arises from existence
Derived from Muslim or Armenian
There is no doubt that ignorance arises from negligence.
These catastrophes arise from all anger.
This edavet course originates from the zelalet state …
As the owner of a pen, the medium that Mirza Ali Ekpar Sabir found to showcase his talent was Mollah Nasruddin Magazine, started by the Azerbaijani writer and journalist, Sheikhul-Muherrin Selil Memhetkuluzade on April 7, 1906 in Tbilisi. His poem, “How the Nation Can Be Destroyed, What I’m Doing”, published in the magazine, sets Sabir’s creative path in the last five and a half years of his life and puts him at the forefront of the struggle to enlighten him. Prachya Sabir, whose humorous poems were mostly published in the Baku Press as well as in Mollah Nasruddin, fell ill with cirrhosis in the autumn of 1910. Mirza Ali Ekpar Sabir, who was taken to Tbilisi in February 1911 with the financial support of Cellil Mehmetkuluza, continued his treatment from the office of Mollah Nasruddin newspaper for about a month and a half. Despite taking medicine every morning despite his illness, Sabir did not stay away from his jokes. “Now let’s go to the Muslim Quarter to collect materials for writing poetry” He said. Sabir, who left Tbilisi at the end of March, received financial support across the Caucasus, where he was born, following an announcement in the Mullah Nasruddin Journal to continue his treatment in Shamakhi. On 12 July 1911, Mirza Ali Ekpar Sabir, who, despite all efforts, could not be saved, died in Shamakhi. His close friend the poet Abbas Sihat wrote in his essay. “Sabir’s death is an eternal tragedy for a nation that will later realize its pain in its own body.” He wrote …
As we mentioned above, especially in Turkey, only ‘Where will I see Muslims, I am afraid’ Sabir’s poems are evaluated. However, Mirza Ali was not an atheist, but a great intellectual who fought with his pen against religious ignorance. (Again, don’t get me wrong – it wasn’t my intention to introduce him as a fan). In his poems, he argued that religion should be learned from the Qur’an, and that religious merchants should be withdrawn from citizens and the Holy Scriptures, and that religion should not be divided:
The Qur’an has become a revelation to us
When the command was unity, the Prophet Ji Sun.
You two allies will not find your Ray Muslim
In the Caucasus one dance (how many) in millions.
Is this how we should revive Islam?
Should we practice faith in this way?
Isn’t this the heart of Islam?
He started walking without water in the red blood.
In his poem, which supports Settar Khan, the leader of Iran’s constitutional revolution of 1908-1911, Mirza Ali describes the activities of the Sabir revolution leader as “a service to Islam and humanity.” Regarding his support for the struggle to overthrow the Iranian monarchy, Abbas Sihat said:Sabir has served the Iranian revolution better than the army. He wrote. Sabir, who was in favor of liberating the entire Muslim community of the East from dictatorship, never lost the same support with his poetry in the struggle for the downfall of Abdulhamit.
Mirza Ali Ekpar Sabir is the owner of the pen who contributed a lot to the process of nationalization of Eastern society after Kamal.
Tawfiq to be your ally and give to the Ummah
Awaken the sense of nationalism in the language of the nation (in the heart of the nation) today
The poet, who laid the groundwork for the nationalization process with his Mazmunlu poetry, never hesitated to criticize the insults in front of foreign nations, especially the Russians:
When we see a Russian we are on the side of defeat (disrespect)
We are sheep and goats
Don’t talk to us, there is a Pula Sardar next to us
Because of what we are
We are sheep and goats.
Bringing to mind the negative role of intellectuals in this process, Sabir emphasized that the cost of isolating and degrading society was one of the main reasons why the nation could not get rid of its inferiority. Ali Ekpar Sabir, who closely observes world development, is concerned about the future of society, which he describes as “ours” and the consequences of not being able to get rid of the influence of religious merchants.
Foreigner (foreigner) flies in the sky with balloons
We are not getting in the car yet
Fly in the sky like a bird
Those who were on the pulpit buried us
Revealed in his verses. The concept of ‘class’ was brought to literature by him which was not on the agenda of any Muslim community at that time. Believing that workers and peasants should adopt the concept of ‘class’ to protect their rights, Sabir was confident that this awareness would accelerate the process of nationalization. It was impossible for Mirza Ali to find the right method for the humorous style that Ekpar Sabir chose for the society to better understand and accept the concepts of ‘race’ and ‘class’:
Give wheat to your farmer, you eat buckwheat
If there is no water, you can melt ice in winter.
What is stone-soft poison, you eat seagull (snake)
You are not accustomed to meat and oil in the world.
You live like an animal, flat, planter.
And Sabir signed a ‘first’ that has never been seen in the literature of earlier societies, calling on the workers and peasants, who represent the concept of ‘class’, to fight on the streets for their own rights. . From here, things get trickier, and this is where the true meaning of burning up of bad psychic imprints comes into play:
He who loves man is a lover of freedom
Yes, where there is freedom, there is humanity.
This verse “The penman’s thought establishes every rule, regardless of its quality.” This is a clear confirmation of the policy. Because Mehmet Emin Resulzadeh, the founding leader of the first republic in the East, declared on May 28, 1918, that Mirza Ali Ekpar was inspired by Sabir’s line of “freedom for the people, freedom for the nation”.
Although countless books and essays have been written on his poetry over the past five and a half years, it is still unknown who will introduce Sabir to the world as he did. On that occasion when the rulers of the socialist regime celebrated his sixtieth birthday (1922) as the ‘poet of socialist reality’. “We pay tribute to the poet after his death” Ali Aga Wahid was presented with a suit, a pair of shoes and 10 socks, who recited his poems. In fact, Mirza Ali once declared his immortality while Sabir himself was still alive:
It doesn’t matter, it hurts, one day it’s time to scare me
Even if I go, my past will remain in the world.
To summarize the situation, “Which Muslim did Sabir fear?” If the question is not clear on this or another level, then the poem ‘My Fear’ should be read again. Because Mirza Ali Ekpar Sabir wrote in the last four lines of this poem that he wrote in 1907, “He is afraid of Muslims whose idea is blood-blood. If this is not enough, write down which Muslims Sabir fears:
-Sabir feared religious businessmen whose speeches did not match their goals;
-Those who married a nine-year-old girl to the Imam were afraid;
-He was afraid of pilgrims who kept sacrificial skins at home, not at school;
– He feared the ‘intellectuals’ who despised his mother tongue and society;
He was afraid of terrorists carrying guns and bombs, he was afraid of ISIS …
They say, let’s see, 115 years after writing the poem ‘Korkuram’, is there anyone who is not afraid of these Muslims?
Exactly 108 years ago, Mirza Ali Ekpar had the following method for Sabir’s ‘Ottoman-Turkish’ debate that came to the fore in Turkey today:
Only one of the two languages can be translated
What does it mean to translate from Ottoman Turkish?
Although his only wish in the last years of his life was to have his poems published in book form, he could not see it. When a fundraising campaign started by a female teacher in Baku failed, the women of Tbilisi spent the proceeds by organizing a market for the publication of Sabir’s book of poems, Huffpnam, and in 1912 saw the light.
As I remember this greatest figure of the East with reverence and love on his 160th birthday, I owe it to myself to congratulate him on those who love him with four lines:
Comrade, are you in bed?
No, say it if you can.
I would like to borrow ten manats
No, brother, I fell asleep …