Ginans: Our Wonderful Tradition – Ismailimail launches a new series

Ismailimail Ginan SeriesIsmailimail in collaboration with the alumni of the IIS Karim Maherali, launches a new weekly Ginan series which will contain a transliteration and translation of a chosen Ginan. This will serve to promote the understanding of the Ismaili Tradition to the wider Jamat and hopefully prepare us for the Diamond Jubilee of Mawlana Hazar Imam.

The term ‘ginan’ is derived from the Sanskrit jnana, meaning contemplative knowledge or ‘wisdom.’. Ginans have been a central part of the religious life of the Nizari Ismaili community of the Indian subcontinent that today resides in many countries around the world. Indeed the present Imam of the Shia Imami Ismailis has emphasized the importance of Ginans on many occasions. In one of his directives to his followers he has said:

“Many times I have recommended to my spiritual children that they should remember the Ginans, that they should understand the meaning of these Ginans and that they should carry these meanings in their hearts. It is most important that my spiritual children from wherever they may come, should, through the ages and from generation to generation, hold to this tradition which is so special, so unique and so important to my jamat.” Karachi, 16.12.1964

Our first Ginan in the series: ‘Ginan bolo re nit noore bhariyaa’ by Pir Sadardeen, with original transliteration and translation by Karim Maherali, will be posted soon.

Your comments and suggestions for improvement and further discussion are welcome.

Karim Maherali completed the IIS Waezeen and Teacher Educator Programme in 1987. Prior to that, he received a B.Sc. with Honors in Actuarial Sciences from City University, London. Karim received his M.A. in Education in Developing Countries (Planning, Management and Curriculum) from the University of London in 1985 and a Diploma as Programmer/Analyst from C.D.I. College of Business and Technology, Calgary in 1997. He worked as a Senior Programmer for the City of Calgary for 15 years and is currently employed with the Best Western Village Park Inn.


Earlier related

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Author: ismailimail

Independent, civil society media featuring Ismaili Muslim community, inter and intra faith endeavors, achievements and humanitarian works.

3 thoughts

  1. This endeavor is most appreciated!
    My suggestion for Diamond Jubilee is that the whole jamat learns a qasida that can be recited if/when Hazar Imam comes here. I always lament the fact that we don’t all participate and the jamat is mostly silent during a qasida. This would show our Imam that we are embracing all Ismailis’ traditions.


  2. Ginans and Qasidas are our traditions. They go back hundreds of years. We sing them everyday-morning and evening-when we come to Jamatkhana. Many scholarly works have lately taken by our young students and that is to be appropriated. However it is with pain we have to mention it is being lost among wider young Jamat. Language problems besides others hinders children to learn Ginans/Quasidas. Translations of these precious literature will go a long way to
    elliviate these problems. Wishing all those involved success in their endeavours.


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