In a child’s heart, dreams are born. Then, ever so often, as we grow up, we forget the dreams. Then we begin a new pursuit for ‘what is my dream, my goal, my ambition?’ We look and we yearn and we struggle and we learn.
One day , in all its simplicity, it appeared before me, my childhood dream, my song. It made my heart smile, like it did when I was a child.
I went to help a child with her homework, only to find, she was copying down an urdu poem, a hymn, that I used to sing as a child. It was my favourite.
I set out to teach but became a student instead. I thought I was a grown up helping a child, but the child reminded me of my own dreams, my song, lost to the years.
All these years I have been on the quest for Light, for goodness, for Closeness, for Peace. I’ve always thought this was a grown up quest, but it seems like its a path we’re on from the beginning.
And a poem, I recited in childhood, had all these . Light, Closeness, Peace.
“To my lips come a prayer, as a longing of mine.
May like the candle be this life of mine, O Lord.
May the world’s darkness disappear through this life of mine! May every place light up with the sparkling light of mine!
May my homeland through me attain elegance and beauty. As the garden through flowers attains elegance and beauty.
May my life be like that of the moth , O Lord May I love the lamp of knowledge, O Lord.
May my work be supporting the poor. Loving the destitute and elderly.
O Allah! Protect me from the bad. That path which is good, make me walk that way.
To my lips come a prayer, as a longing of mine. May like the candle be this life of mine O Lord”
–The poem is by Urdu poet Allama Iqbal.