The Ghazal is a poetic form consisting of rhyming couplets and a refrain, with each line sharing the same meter. A ghazal may be understood as a poetic expression of both the pain of loss or separation and the beauty of love in spite of that pain.
The structural requirements of the ghazal are similar in stringency to those of the Petrarchan sonnet. In its style and content it is a genre which has proved capable of an extraordinary variety of expression around its central themes of love and separation. It is one of the principal poetic forms which the Indo-Perso-Arabic civilization offered to the eastern Islamic world.
Qawwali is a traditional form of Islamic song found in India and Pakistan. The word Qawwali is derived from the Arabic word Qaol which means ‘axiom’ or ‘dictum’. A Qawwal is one who sings qawwali, or the dictums of the prophets and praises of God. The qawwali is closely linked to the spiritual and artistic life of northern India and Pakistan.
Spiritual Aspect of Qawwali
The Qawwali is inextricably linked to the sufi tradition; Sufism is a mystical school of Islamic thought which strives to attain truth and divine love by direct personal experience. In Arabic, this mysticism is known as tasawwuf. The difference between Sufism and mainstream islam is simple. All Muslims believe that man is on a path to God (tariqah). However where the mainstream Muslim believes that it is only possible to reach God during ones life. To this end there are a number of different techniques and methods.