WHAT WAS, is and will be, it is all there in a Sufi kalam, sings Khadim Hussain Warsi, here from Pakistan for a concert at Punjab Kala Bhawan. India is a place where Warsi’s voice and passion for Sufi is heard loud and clear for more than one decade now.
“Performing here is like being in my own home. In both the Punjabs, people seek each other and long for each other and through my kalams, I sing of love, what I have always received here from everyone,” says Warsi, who claims he sings Sufi for he was born to spread the word of the masters. Warsi, who does seva at the dargah of Waris Shah, says he sings many Sufis, but yes, his pehchaan is Waris Shah, and every time he reads a kalaam, which he has read many times before, he finds a new meaning and experience, one that envelops the soul. “The Sufi masters have given us a direction, and the essence of their writings is timeless. They will always live in our hearts. That’s why those who sing Sufi with honesty, dedication, love, and not for fame and money, will find love and peace. Like Amrita Pritam called out to Warish Shah once, and she was immortalised,” says Warsi, born in Shekupura of Nankana Sahib district.
Since early childhood Warsi had started going to the Darbar of Baba Waris Shah at Jandiala Sher Khan, about 16 kilometres from his birthplace, on foot. Born in a zamindar family, it was his father who encouraged him to recite Waris Shah. “He loved my voice and Shahji’s kalaams, and so I set on a journey of searching, and found my guru Rahmat Ali, who passed on his legacy to me and the journey continues.”
The truth, the universal reality is expressed in the words of the Sufis, and that’s why, says Warsi, they live on in our hearts and minds. “We as human beings have to go beyond the basics, only then can you understand a Sufi, for they speak the language of God and my life is dedicated to spread their writings,” adds Warsi.
Warsi presented a recital that included the kalaams of Sultan Bahu, Baba Bulle Shah, Shah Hussain, Mian Mohamad Baksh and Waris Shah. The concert was presented by North Zone Cultural Centre in collaboration with Chandigarh Sangeet Natak Akademi.