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 Ahmadi Khanis Theory of Kurdish Nationalism in Mem Zin - Part II

 Opinion  Analysis 
  The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author


Ahmadi Khanis Theory of Kurdish Nationalism in Mem Zin - Part II ‎ 31.8.2012 
By Dr Kamal Mirawdeli

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Dr Kamal Mirawdeli, a prominent Kurdish writer and Kurdistan Region Presidency Candidate 2009, he was the strongest rival of the incumbent president of the region and was the second winner in the elections.
Read more by the Author
August 31, 2012

Read: Part I | Part II


But God made it like this from the beginning of life
He let these Rum and 'Ejam (Turks and Persians) have power over us
Although to be their subordinate is a shame
This shame belongs to the notable people
Shame upon the rulers and Mrs
What is the crime of the poets and the poor?

1.3 What can bring about Kurdish salvation?

Qet mumkin e ev ji erx lewleb Tali' bibtin j bo me kewkeb? Bexte me ji bo mera bibit yar Carek bibtin ji xwab hişyar Rabit ji me j cihan penahek Peyda bibtin me padşahek Şr hunera me bte dann Qedr qelema me bte zanin
Derd me bibtin lac
lm me bibtin rewac
Ger d hebya me serfirazek Sahebkeremek, suxennewazek Neqd me dib bi skke meskk Nedma wehe b rewac meşkuk Her endi ku xalis temiZn Neqdn bi sikkey 'eziZn
Ger d hebya me padşahek Laiq bidiya bixwed kulahek Teyin bibye j bo w textek Zahir vedib j bo me bextek Hasil bibya j bo wi tacek Elbette dib me j rewacek Xemxwari dkir li me yetiman Tinane der j dest leiman
Ghalib ne dib li ser me ev Rm Ne dibne xerabey di dest bm
Mehkum ' eleyhi se'alik Meghlb u mut' Turk u Tacik (194-207)

Is it ever possible that this helical time
Would bring into sight for us a star
Our luck for us would become a yar (lover, supporter)
And just for once would awake from her slumber
Would rise for us a someone we can trust in this world
And appear among us a King
The sword of our art would be recognized
The value of our pens would be known
Our ills would find a cure
Our science would be appreciated
Oh, if we could have a dignified leader
Compassionate, generous, well-spoken,
Our coins (words) would be stamped with value (minted)
And would no longer be so suspected and without market
Though our words are pure and excellent
The two metals (gold and silver) are made dear by being minted
If we had a Mr who would see himself worthy of a crown
And for him a throne would have been identified
Then fortune would have showed its face to us
If for him a crown could be had
Perhaps for us a value would obtain
He would take care of the orphans
Would take us out of the hands of the villains
These Turks would not have had a sway over us
Our land would not have been made ruins under the owl
Would not have been ruled by the Eliyyis (Safavids ) and thieves
Subjugated and made obedient by the Turks and Persians.

Here Khani clearly puts the Kurds' sameness in sharp contrast to the otherness of their subjugators. The differentiating elements are both political and cultural. But it is the political factor that is paramount. Kurds can only come out of their historical predicament by having a royal authority, a King, of their own. Then the Kurdish words will have value; their pens, science and art will be appreciated; their poor and orphans would be taken care of and above all they will be liberated: they will be no longer under the yoke of those who Khani clearly believe are below the Kurds in qualities of nobility, generosity and courage.

1.4 Khani on the relationship between political power and cultural revival

Ger d hebuya me ji xwedanek
Alikeremek, letifedanek
Ilm hunar kemal u idha'n
Şir xezel kitab diwan
Ev cins biba li ba wi me'ml
Ev neqd biba l nik wi meqbl
Min d 'elema kelam mewzn
Ali bikira l bane gerdn
Bnave rha Mel Cizir
Pe heyy bikira: Eli Herr
Keyfek we bda Feqiy Teyran
Hetta bi ebed bimay heyran

If we had for us an owner
Highly-generous, versed in good speech,
Science, arts, perfection and prudence,
Poetry, lyrics, books, and verse collections (diwan)
These genres would become common pursuits
This currency would become acceptable to him
I would see the banner of rhythmic speech
Would be raised high on the top of universe
I would have brought back to life Mel Cizir
Resurrected Eli Herr
Would have given such pleasure to Feqiy Teyran
That forever he would have stayed overwhelmed with joy.

Khani's dream for an independent Kurdish monarch is not an abstract will. It is the result of his own experience as a highly-conscious, superbly-educated, deeply-frustrated Kurdish intellectual in a Kurdish dynasty whose Mr does not give a damn to arts, poetry, literature (See 1.6) or any sort of speech, knowledge and deeds that might protect and promote the essence and content of Kurdishness, all elements of which are and have always been ancient, abundant, inspiring but abandoned and neglected. He needs only to reverse the situation and dream of a Kurdish power, Mr, who proudly claims the ownership of his nation (to be equally owned by them) to envisage what a different beautiful world would be born! The qualities that Khani wants for this Mr are mostly intellectual: to be (intellectually) generous, versed in the art of speech, who would appreciate arts, sciences, poetry, books and establish them as normal genres and acceptable social and intellectual currency. This would have created opportunities and conditions of possibility that would have brought back to life the deceased and forgotten Kurdish poets such as Mel Cizir, Eli Herr and Feqiy Teyran, the Kurdish poets that had preceded Khani but had already been forgotten in his time.

He could see in his happy imagination that the banner of the sublime Kurdish poetry would shake on the roofs of the universe for everyone in the world to see the proof of the product of Kurdish perfection and intelligence. But the products of intellect like any other goods need a market and someone who could do the marketing for them. In the historical context Khani wrote only those in the position of power and owning wealth and will, could do this. They were the Kurdish Mrs. They could empower, encourage and inspire Khani and poets like him to create miracles. But Khani was deeply disappointed by their performance and propensity. (See below).

1.5 Who are responsible for the Kurds' predicament?

Emma ji ezel Xud wisa kir
Ev Rm 'Ejem li ser me rakir
Tebi'iyyet wan eger i 'are
Ew 'ari l xelq namadre
Namse li hekim emran
Tawan iye şa'ir u feqiran?
ibkim! Ku qewi kesad e bazar
Ninin ji qumaş ra xerdar
Xasma di v e'sr da ku hemyan
Me'şuq hebib e bo me hemyan
Yen ji teme' dirav u dinar
Her yek ji me ra we bne dildar
Ger ilm temam bidiye polek
Bifroşi tu hikmet bi solek
Kes nakete meyter xwe (Cam)
Ranegrtin kesek (Nizam)

But God made it like this from the beginning of life
He let these Rum and 'Ejam (Turks and Persians) have power over us
Although to be their subordinate is a shame
This shame belongs to the notable people
Shame upon the rulers and Mrs
What is the crime of the poets and the poor?
What can I do, the market (for Kurdish intellectual genres see 1.6) is very much stagnant
The fabrics have no customers
Especially in this age ('esr) when all of them
The lovers and the beloved all (or the pun: money wallets)
That is for the greed of money and dinars
Everyone of us has become a lover
If you give away the whole of science for one shilling
And sell wisdom for a slipper
No one would hire Jami as a horse keeper
And keep Nizami as a servant

Khani believes in pre-destination but at the same time he shares the Zoroastrian belief in man's free will in making choices between good and evil, and what is right and what is wrong in terms of human welfare. It is an act of God that, perhaps by putting the Kurds in a certain existential geographical space, that other nations have power over the Kurds, but the Mrs can do something about it by using the same means that have made other nations powerful and worldly mainly the combination of the power of sword and power of word and providing a good leadership as mentioned above. Therefore while the existentiality of subordination is a predestined given, to accept this situation or reject it is a human choice. Perhaps God has wisdom in putting the Kurds in that predicament. Perhaps God has atoned this disadvantage for them by giving them nobility of character, extraordinary bravery and power of intellect. The majority of the Kurds, their poor and poets, make the natural choice of rejecting the foreigners' subjugation. It is the political elite of Kurdistan namely the rulers and princes, who disgracefully accept subordination by Turks and Ejems. What they promote is the culture of greed and worship of money. Love is no more that human spiritual experience sought by ashiqs and 'arifs (passionate lovers and Gnostics). All has become lovers of wallets and dinars. There are no markets, no customers and buyers for science or those who give it. People do not hire Jamis and Nizamis (two iconic Persian poets) even as horse-keepers and house-keepers.

1.6 How is royal authority, normally, achieved?

Heri bire şiri dest himmet
Zebt kir j xwe ra bi mr dewlet
Lewra ku cihan weki 'erus e
W hukm di dest şir rse
L 'eqd sedaq mehr kabin
Lutf kerem 'eta bexşin
Pirs j din min ev bi hikmet
Mehra te ? Gote mnku himmet
Hasil: ku din b şir ihsan
Tesxir dibit j boy insan.

Anyone who held the sword in the hand of courage
Established dewlet (royal authority) for themselves with their courage
Since the world is like a bride
Her decision is in the hand of the naked sword
But [about] contract, charity, dowry, and wedding money
Gentility, generosity, gifts and presents,
I asked the world as a man of wisdom:
What is your dowry? Said to me: "courage!"
In short: The world with swords and compassion
Will be made available for the benefit of man.

Again like Ibn Khaldun, Khani thinks that physical resilience and courage provide the core power for obtaining royal authority. Examples of time show that all the groups that used courage, achieved their own royal authority. He presents this as the accumulated wisdom articulated by the bride of the world herself. While a matrimonial fulfillment may involve marriage contract, dowry, gifts, etc, the only price for getting the bride of the world is courage. Bu the Kurds do have courage, so why are they still deprived of their own worldly power embodied in their own Mr with crown, throne and authority? That is where Khani has a problem with understanding God's Wisdom and his people's character.

From the writer's new book Love and Existence: Analytical Study of Ahmadi Khani's Tragedy of Mem Zin, which will be published soon.

Read Part I

Kamal Rasul Mirawdeli (Dr), a prominent Kurdish writer and the former presidential candidate in 2009 Iraq's Kurdistan Region elections.

Copyright 2012 



  The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author


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