Punjabi/Urdu: Allah huu

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Qureshpor

Senior Member
Panjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
Although my question appears on surface to be an Arabic language query, which it is, nevertheless it is confined to Punjabi/Urdu literary background- perhaps more precisely to Punjabi/Urdu muslim background.

You will have heard the well known qavvaalii by the Late Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan, "Allah huu Allah huu...". I always thought that the "huu" after the word "Allah" is no more than the final "he +pesh" being elongated. Please take a look at the Iqbal couplets below.

Haqiiqat-i-azalii hai raqaabat-i-aqvaam
nigaah-i-piir-i-falak meN nah maiN 'aziiz nah tuu

rahe gaa tuu hii jahaaN meN yagaanah-o-yaktaa
utar gayaa jo tire dil meN laa shariika lahuu*

So my way of thinking was that just like
lahu has been stretched to lahuu, Allaahu has taken the form of Allaahuu. But, then when I saw the couplet below, again by Iqbal (from Jibriil-o-Ibliis), I realised that my thinking was totally off the mark.

maiN khaTaktaa huuN dil-i-YazdaaN meN kaaNTe kii tarH
tuu faqat Allaah huu, Allaah huu, Allaah huu!

Furthermore, in the Punjabi works of Sultan Bahoo (1629-1690), practically every line ends with-huu. My question is this. What is the difference between :

qul huwa_llaaHu [aHad] ; Say, He Allah is one.

and

Allaah huu? [Obviously, the final zabar has been taken out to get to huu.]

Do we translate
huwa_llaaHu in the same way as Allaah huu, namely "He is Allah" or is there a subtle difference between the two?


 
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  • eskandar

    Moderator
    English (US)
    Maybe I am misunderstanding your question, but I think both اللهُ (Allahu) and الله هو (Allah hu) are used especially in a Sufi (/literary) context. There is a rich Sufi tradition around these two phrases and especially the syllable 'hu' because of its multiple meanings (both 'He' as in God, and the sound of a breath, as used in Sufi breathing and chanting exercises). So we can say اللهُ means "God is!" or "God exists!" and الله هو means "God, just He!" or something like that.

    Sorry, now I don't know if my reply was helpful at all or just restated things you already knew! :(
     

    Qureshpor

    Senior Member
    Panjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    Maybe I am misunderstanding your question, but I think both اللهُ (Allahu) and الله هو (Allah hu) are used especially in a Sufi (/literary) context. There is a rich Sufi tradition around these two phrases and especially the syllable 'hu' because of its multiple meanings (both 'He' as in God, and the sound of a breath, as used in Sufi breathing and chanting exercises). So we can say اللهُ means "God is!" or "God exists!" and الله هو means "God, just He!" or something like that.

    Sorry, now I don't know if my reply was helpful at all or just restated things you already knew! :(
    Thank you. I have posed the same question in the Arabic Forum where Allah huu appears to be non-existent.

    I think "Allah/Allahu" on its own can not mean "Allah is". But huwa_llaahu would mean, "He is Allah" whereas "Allah huu" (i.e. Allah huwa) would mean "He is Allah"
     

    MonsieurGonzalito

    Senior Member
    Castellano de Argentina
    In any case, today I was extremely surprised to learn that, in Urdu, the -huu part seems to be written specifically.

    Example from the song "Aaqa" [Coke Studio, Season 9]


    یہ سب تمہارا کرم ہے آقا
    کہ بات اب تک بنی ہوئی ہے

    الله ہو
    الله الله ہو

    الله ہو
    الله الله ہو


    Also the group ""اللہ ہو" has a healthy presence on the Internet.
     

    Dib

    Senior Member
    Bengali (India)
    If you read Qureshpor's posts carefully, he suggests that this ہو may be Arabic huwa (he) pronounced in an Urduized way.
     

    MonsieurGonzalito

    Senior Member
    Castellano de Argentina
    If you read Qureshpor's posts carefully, he suggests that this ہو may be Arabic huwa (he) pronounced in an Urduized way.
    I did, but this article in Wikipedia suggests it is simply the Arabic nominative ending, emphasized in Sufism.
    Maybe to produce an effect of just leaving the predicative hanging: God [is] ... whatever (truth, Himself, etc.)

    [BTW: I don't place enormous value on Wikipedia, but it makes sense in this case]
     
    • Thank you!
    Reactions: Dib

    Dib

    Senior Member
    Bengali (India)
    Btw, هو pronounced "huu" has also been used in Persian, for example, in these lines by Rumi:
    هو الاول هو الآخـر هو الظاهـر هو البـاطن
    بـغیر از هو و یـا من هو دگر چیزی نمی دانم

    The first line is Arabic and in it هو has to be pronounced "huwa" for the correct scansion. But in the second line, which is Persian, هو is to be read "huu" for correct scansion.
     
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