BIOGRAPHY OF ABU NAWAS
Abu Nawas' original name is Abu Ali al-Hasan bin Hani al-Hakami. He was born in 145 H (747 AD) in the city of Ahvaz in Persia (present Iran), with blood from Arabian father and Persian mother flowing on his body. Abu Nawas is an Arab poet and is considered one of the greatest poets of classical Arabic literature. Abu Nawas also appears several times in the story of the Thousand and One Nights. His father, Hani al-Hakam, was a member of Marwan II's military legion. While his mother was named Jalban, a Persian woman who worked as a woolen washer. Since childhood he was orphaned. The mother then took him to Bashrah, Iraq. It is in this city that Abu Nawas learns various sciences.
His youth was full of controversial behavior that made Abu Nawas appear as a unique figure in Islamic Arabic literature. Even so, his poems are also loaded with sprirtual values, in addition to a sense of humanity and justice. Abu Nawas studied Arabic literature to Abu Zaid al-Ansari and Abu Ubaidah. He also studied the Koran to Ya'qub al-Hadrami. While in the Science of Hadith, he studied to Abu Walid bin Ziyad, Muktamir bin Sulayman, Yahya bin Said al-Qattan, and Azhar bin Sa'ad as-Samman.
His encounter with the poet from Kufa, Walibah bin Habab al-Asadi, has refined his style and brought him to the top of Arabic literature. Walibah was very interested in the talent of Abu Nawas who then took him back to Ahwaz, then to Kufa. In Kufah the talent of Abu Nawas is galvanized. Ahmar ordered Abu Nawas to dwell in the interior, living with the Bedouin Arabs to deepen and refine the Arabic language.
Then he moved to Baghdad. It was at the center of the civilization of the Abbasid dynasty that he gathered with the poets. Thanks to his greatness writing poetry, Abu Nawas can get acquainted with the nobles. But because of his proximity to the nobles his poems at that time changed, which tended to worship and lick the ruler.
In Al-Wasith fil Adabil 'Arabi wa Tarikhihi, Abu Nawas is portrayed as a multivitist poet, full of jokes, sharp tongue, fanciful imagery, and prominent literary figures of the new generation. But unfortunately, his scientific works are rarely known in the intellectual world. He is only seen as a funny and unorthodox person. His versatility in writing poetry caught the attention of Caliph Harun al-Rashid. Through the court musicians, Ishaq al-Wawsuli, Abu Nawas was called to be a court poet (sya'irul bilad).
His humorous attitude makes his life journey truly colorful. His penchant for playing with words with a high sense of humor seems to be a legend in the treasury of world civilization. His proximity to power has also plunged him into prison. The reason, one day Abu Nawas read the poetry Kafilah Bani Mudhar considered offensive to the Khalifah. Of course the Khalifah was wrathful, then imprisoned him. After his release, he turned away from the Caliph and served Prime Minister Barmak. He left Baghdad after the Barmak family fell in 803 AD. After that he went to Egypt and composed poetry for the Egyptian governor, Khasib bin Abdul Hamid al-Ajami. However, he returned to Baghdad after Harun al-Rashid died and was replaced by Al-Amin.
Since languishing in jail, Abu Nawas's verses changed, becoming religious. If previously he was very arrogant with worldly life full of glamor and rah-rah, now he more surrender to the power of God.
Indeed, his achievement in writing poetry inspired his penchant for immorality. But, in the dark way, Abu Nawas finds divine values. The poems of his repentance can be interpreted as a long way to God. Although close to Sultan Harun al-Rashid, Abu Nawas does not always live in worldly glamor. He once lived in darkness - but that brings his own blessings.
A friend of his, Abu Hifan bin Yusuf bin Dayah, testified that the end of the life of Abu Nawas was marked by worship activities. Some of his poems reinforce that. One of the most beautiful verses of his poetry is a deep remorse of his past. Regarding the year of meningalnya, many versions are mutually different. There are mention of 190 H / 806 M, some are 195H / 810 M, or 196 H / 811 M. While others in 198 H / 813 M and 199 H / 814 M. It is said that Abu Nawas died from being persecuted by someone Who was ordered by the Nawbakhti family - who held a grudge against him. He is buried in Syunizi in the heart of Baghdad City.