M. S. Umar received his classical (school) education at Central Model School, Lahore; Forman Christian College, Lahore; Govt. College, Lahore, BA (English, Philosophy) Govt. College, Lahore; MA (English); along with acquiring Arabic, Persian and traditional Islamic Sciences (Arabic, Persian, Tajwid and Hifz). Further studies included M. Phil. (Iqbal Studies), Allama Iqbal Open University, Islamabad and Ph.D. (ABD) Department of Philosophy, Punjab University Lahore. Topic: Ibn ‘Arabi and Iqbal - A Comparative Study of Key Philosophical Concepts.
Before starting his career at the Iqbal Academy he was a consultant to Suhail Academy, a publishing enterprise renowned for the high degree of accuracy, neatness and beauty of its English, Arabic and Persian reprints. Since 1984 he has worked with the Iqbal Academy Pakistan, a government research institution for the works and teachings of Iqbal, the poet Philosopher of Pakistan, first as Deputy Director and then as Director of the Iqbal Academy for the last thirty years.
He also worked as the Academic Director, Institute of Islamic Culture; Chief Editor, Al-Ma‘arif and later on as Visiting Scholar to International Institute of Islamic Thought and Civilization, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and remained associated with the National University of Computers and Emerging Sciences, Lahore and the Lahore University of Management Sciences as an Adjunct Faculty Member. He is presently Director, Centre for English Language & Professor (Social Sciences), Faculty of Information Technology at the University of Central Punjab, Lahore.
He is the Founder-Editor of Riwayat, intellectual journal of Urdu Language, Editor, Iqbal Review; Quarterly Journal, published alternately in Urdu and English (with occasional issues in Persian, Arabic and Turkish) devoted to the study of the works and teachings of Iqbal as well as to Islamic Studies, Comparative Religion, Philosophy, Literature, History, Arts and Sociology. Its Persian, Arabic and Turkish issues were planned and inaugurated by him.
He also edited Studies in Tradition, Quarterly Journal devoted to traditional studies on Metaphysics, Philosophy, Literature, Art and Science.
Well versed in Urdu, English, Arabic, and Persian, he has contributed a number of articles on Islamic and literary themes to the reputed academic journals apart from publishing works in English, Urdu and Persian on Iqbal, Islamic Studies, literature and Sufism.
His area of expertise is: Iqbal’s life and thought, Islamic mysticism, medieval Muslim intellectual history as well as religion and science.
Literary Works and Publications (Selection)
Muhammad Ḥasan ‘Askarī: Paragon of Urdu Literature. Thesis for M.A (English), Unpublished.
M‘āṣir-1 (Urdu, several translations and articles were included in this anthology of current literature. Lahore 1979.
Jhalkyiān (Vol.1) (Urdu, Ed., Essays, reflections and reviews of Muḥammad Ḥasan ‘Askarī, writer, critic, educationist and a leading intellectual of the recent past. Maktaba Riwayat, Lahore 1982.
Jhalkyiān (Vol.2) (Urdu, Ed. Essays, reflections and reviews of Muḥammad Ḥasan ‘Askarī, writer, critic, educationist and a leading intellectual of the recent past). Nafees Academy, Karachi, 1990.
Riwāyat-1 (Urdu, Ed., first issue of the only journal of ideas in Urdu. Several articles and translations were also contributed to the Issue. Topics concern psychology, philosophy, tradition and metaphysics). Lahore 1983.
Riwāyat-2 (Urdu, Ed., second issue of the only journal of ideas in Urdu. Translations and
Reviews contributed). Lahore 1985.
Riwāyat-3 (Urdu) Ed. This number is devoted to the study of the poetic and prose works of Salīm Aḥmad, a leading poet, critic, dramatist, philosopher and exponent of traditional thought. Maktaba Riwāyat, Lahore 1987.
Riwāyat-4 (Urdu, Ed., this number is devoted to the study of the poetic and prose works of Salīm Aḥmad, leading poet, critic, dramatist, philosopher and exponent of traditional thought. Maktaba Riwāyat, Lahore 1987.
Ibn ‘Arabī: Life And Works (Persian) by Muḥsin Jahāngīrī. Urdu translation with introduction and notes. Institute of Islamic Culture, Lahore, 1988, 2002.
An Analytical Study of Bibliographies of Manuscripts in Pakistan (English). Al-Furqan Foundation, London.
Description of Libraries and Private Collections of Manuscripts in Pakistan (English). (Al-Furqan Foundation, London), E.J. Brill, 1993.
Sir Seyed Aur Hali Ka Nazria-e-fitrat by Dr. Zafar Hasan (Urdu, Ed.), Institute of Islamic Culture, 1990.
Mohammad Iqbal (English) by Muhammad Munawwar. First of the brochure series of the Iqbal Academy for which I am the general editor, Iqbal Academy Pakistan, Lahore, 1987.
Kulliyāt-e-Iqbal (Urdu, Ed.). Iqbal Academy Pakistan, 1990.
Kulliyāt-e-Iqbal (Persian, Ed.). Iqbal Academy Pakistan 1990.
Tashīl-e-Kalām-e-Iqbal (Persian, Gen. Ed.) Urdu translations with complete linguistic breakup of all the Persian works of Iqbal. Payām-i-Mashriq , Iqbal Academy Pakistan, 1992.
Khuṭbāt- i- Iqbal, Nay Tanāẓur maen (Urdu) Iqbal Academy Pakistan, Lahore, 1996, 2002.
Contours of Ambivalence: Ibn ‘Arabī and Iqbal in Historical Perspective (Forthcoming).
Ibn ‘Arabī awr Iqbal (Urdu, forthcoming).
Paradigm of Reconciliation: Iqbal’s Methodology in his “Reconstruction” (In Preparation)
Maqālāt-i-Sirāj (Ed.), Bazyaaft Publishers, Khi, 2011.
Askarī Kai Afsānay (Urdu) Ed. Nafis Academy, Karachi, 1989.
Kahānī ke Rang (Urdu, Ed., collection of Urdu essays on literary criticism and short stories), Jang Publishers, Lahore, 1992.
Poems from Iqbal (English translation of Iqbal's selected verses by Victor Keirnan, edited with a comparative text, Iqbal Academy Pakistan/ OUP, 1999.
“That I May See and Tell”, Significance of Iqbal’s Wisdom Poetry (Eng.), Iqbal Academy Pakistan, 1997, 2002-++.
Har Che Gūyad Dīda Gūyad– Shi‘r i Ḥakīmāna i Iqbal (Persian), Iqbal Academy Pakistan,1999.
“And Here the Twain Did Meet”, (Eng., Ed.) Iqbal Academy Pakistan, 1998, 2002-++.
A Sufi Saint of the 20th Century by Martin Lings. Translated into Urdu in collaboration with Jafar Qasmi. (Forthcoming).
King of the Castle by Gai Eaton (translated into Urdu as Mīr-i-Sṣmaan-i-Wujūd , Muhammad Suheyl Umar, in collaboration with Dr. Naumana Amjad, Iqbal Academy Pakistan, 2007.
Traditional Essays (English, Ed., a collection of articles by Rene Guenon on symbolism, mysticism and tradition (Forthcoming).
Islamic Essays (English, Ed., a collection of articles by Martin Lings on Islamic and traditional themes (Forthcoming).
Sword of Knowledge (Selections from Studies in Comparative Religion. This two volume anthology would consist of a representative selection of articles from the above mentioned journal devoted to metaphysics, cosmology, tradition and symbolism. (Suhail Academy, forthcoming).
Trājim (Urdu, collection of my own articles, translations and reviews published in various
journals (in preparation).
Muhammad. His Life According to the Earliest Sources by Martin Lings (Urdu Translation, in preparation).
Time and Space - Iqbal’s Perspective (Forthcoming IAP).
Time in Islam (Ed., forthcoming IAP).
Vision of Islam by Dr William C. Chittick (Urdu Translation). Iqbal Academy Pakistan, 2009, 2011, 2016
Hundred Years of Iqbal Studies (Eds. M S Umar, Rafiuddin Hashmi), Iqbal Academy Pakistan/ Pakistan Academy of Letters, Isd. 2002-++).
March of Times, Iqbal Academy Pakistan, 2008.
In the Wake of 11th September: Perspectives on Settled Convictions Changes and Challenges ,
Iqbal Academy Pakistan 2003, 2005.
THE RELIGIOUS OTHER: Towards a Muslim Theology of Other Religions in a Post-Prophetic Age, (Ed.) Iqbal Academy Pakistan, 2009, 2011.
Iqbal-Fikri Tanazur aur Asri Ma‘nwiat, Iqbal Academy Pakistan, 2010, 2010, 2011.
Repair and Redeem - Iqbal’s Re-Statement of Sufi Thought, Iqbal Academy Pakistan, 2010, 2012.
Maqālāt-i-Javid, Eds. M.S. Umar & T. H. Tanuli, Iqbal Academy Pakistan, 2011.
Intellectual Legacy, Eds. M.S. Umar & Afzal Qarshi, Iqbal Academy Pakistan, 2011.
Essays of Dr. Javid Iqbal, Eds. M.S. Umar & Afzal Qarshi, Iqbal Academy Pakistan, 2011.
Common ground: Spiritual and Moral Similarities in Islam and Buddhism, by Reza Shah Kazmi, Muhammad Suheyl Umar (Urdu Tr.) Maktaba Jamal Lahore, 2011.
Sir Muhammad Iqbal - Collected Poetical Works (English Translation, Ed.), Iqbal Academy Pakistan 2007.
Iqbal’s Contribution to Literature and Politics by Mirza Munawwar (Ed.) 1997.
List of articles, reviews and translations not included.