Literature and art as collective dreams

Iqbal believed that art and literature are like collective dreams, which come true. Therefore they should present the world as it should be, and not as it appears to be.

This line is taken (with permission) from Khurram Shafique’s upcoming work examining ‘peaks’ in the timeline of Pakistan. He has divided its history into seven phases, each lasting approximately twenty years each, starting from way back in 1887. Pakistan of course formally came into existence in 1947 but Mr Shafique is looking at the development of this ‘nation’ from its conception, of sorts (or at least, that’s how I understood it, and hope I am correct). In fact this work is a completely new discovery looking at what he calls the ‘stages of collective self-development’.

Anyway, I just wanted to quote that line because it spoke to me as a writer. For anyone who wants to know more, Mr Shafique’s formal publication will be printed soon – and will possibly be also available in ebook form.** In the meantime, he has been talking about it in some detail for quite a while now over at the Republic of Rumi¬†website. See this blog post for more.

** Postscript: The ebook has been published by Libredux publishing, and details can be found here.



One comment

  1. Robert says:

    Greetings Saleena,

    Thank you very much for this post. I very much like it, as I like very much Iqbal’s ideas and, of course, Khurram Shafique’s expert (re)presentation of Iqbal.

    Presenting (e.g., in art & literature) the world as it should (could) be, as opposed to merely presenting it as it happens to appear to be (at the moment) seems momentous to me. Imagine a world in which a person (and groups of people collectively) lives a life permeated with the active idea of always reaching for a higher Aim, a higher Purpose, and living, always-in-the-state-of-becoming, of this Aim & Purpose.

    All good wishes,


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