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Synopsis

Muhammad Iqbal (b. Nov. 9, 1877, d. Apr. 21, 1938) was a prominent Islamic writer and politician. Born in the Raj, Cambridge educated, Iqbal is both the the intellectual founder of Pakistan, and its national poet. This poem was composed in Persian, using traditional Persian styles and tropes, and published in Lahore in 1915. The translator was the English orientalist Reynold A. Nicholson. Nicholson later went on to produce the first full critical translation of Rumi's Masnavi into English. 

Introduction
Prologue
I. Showing that the system of the universe originates in the Self, and that the continuation of the life of all individuals depends on strengthening the Self
II. Showing that the life of the Self comes from forming desires and bringing them to birth
III. Showing that the Self is strengthened by Love
IV. Showing that the Self is weakened by asking
V. Showing that when the Self is strengthened by Love it gains dominion over the outward and inward forces of the universe
VI. A tale of which the moral is that negation of the Self is a doctrine invented by the subject races of mankind in order that by this means they may sap and weaken the character of their rulers
VII. To the effect that Plato, whose thought has deeply influenced the mysticism and literature of Islam, followed the sheep's

doctrine, and that we must be on our guard against his theories
VIII. Concerning the true nature of poetry and the reform of Islamic literature
IX. Showing that the education of the Self has three stages: Obedience, Self- control, and Divine Vicegerency
X. Setting forth the inner meanings of the names of Ali
XI. Story of a young man of Merv who came to the saint Ali Hujwírí—God have mercy on him!—and complained that he was oppressed by his enemies
XII. Story of the bird that was faint with thirst
XIII. Story of the diamond and the coal
XIV. Story of the Sheikh and the Brahmin, followed by a conversation between Ganges and Himalaya to the effect that the continuation of social life depends on firm attachment to the characteristic traditions of the community
XV. Showing that the purpose of the Moslem's life is to exalt the Word of Allah, and that the Jihád (war against unbelievers), if it be prompted by land-hunger, is unlawful in the religion of Islam
XVI. Precepts written for the Moslems of India by Mír Naját Nakshband, who is generally known as Bábá Sahrá’í
XVII. Time is a sword
XVIII. An invocation

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