Archive for July, 2016

18th Shawwal Urs Amir Khusro,New Delhi, 1325CE

Saturday, July 23rd, 2016

Nizamuddin at night (photo by Smitha Khorana)

Amir Khusro : Ab’ul Hasan Yāmīn al-Dīn Khusro (1253-1325 CE), better known as Amir Khusro Dehlavi or Amir Khusraw Balkhi in Afghanistan and Iran (in Persian ), is one of the iconic figures in the cultural history of the Indian subcontinent. A Sufi mystic and a spiritual disciple of Nizamuddin Auliya of Delhi, Amir Khusro (or Khusrau or Khusraw) was not only one of India’s greatest poets, he is also credited with being the founder of both Hindustani classical music and Qawwali (the devotional music of the Sufis). He was born of a Turkish father, Saif Ad-din, and an Indian mother, in India. (from the Aulia e Hind website)

For more information about Amir Khusro, his influence on India music and his poetry you can link to the Aulia e Hind website and the Amir Khusro website of Elekrta Music.

Amir Khusro was a devoted disciple of Nizamuddin Aulia. He love and friendship between them is a shining light in the Chishti silsila. The great saint would call him “tukem” meaning “my turk” referring fondly to Khusro’s father’s nationality. They were bonded very closely as Murshid and Mureed with much love and respect between them.

Tomb of Amir Khusro

My favorite story that illustrates this is the story of the poor farmer who came to Nizamuddin to beg for something that would help his family’s situation. Nizamuddin was known for helping the poor and needy and for never keeping anything that was donated to him after the close of the day. Each day all must be given away. But the farmer came from far away and by the time he arrived at the Khanka Nizamuddin had already given out all that there was for the day. The farmer was very dissapointed and seeing his distress Nizamuddin offered his own sandals to the man. The farmer accepted this gift but wondered to himself how this would help his family.

Setting out for home the farmer realized he would never make it back all the way that night so he came to a caravan which had camped for the night to warm himself by the fire and perhaps get some food. Amir Khusro was among the merchants in the caravan and watched as the farmer sat down to share the fire. Khusro noticed the sandals that the man was wearing and asked where he had gotten them. The farmer told his story about getting them as a gift from Nizamuddin Aulia. Khusro immediately offered to buy the sandals from the farmer and set the price as everything he had with him on the caravan. As he was just returning from a very successful trip, this was an enormous sum. The farmer was overjoyed and returned home the next day leading all the animals that had been Amir Khusro’s laden with all the goods as well.

For his part, Amir Khusro woke the next day and immediately went to the Khanka of his Sheikh, wearing the sandals on his head. When Nizamuddin Aulia saw this he smiled and said “Turkem, (a term of endearment meaning “My Turk”) how much did you pay for those sandals?” to which Khusor replied “All that I own” “Well then, you got them for a cheap price!” Nizamuddin said.


14th Shawwal Urs Hazrat Khwaja Sadid Uddin, Marshi, Syria, 207AH/866CE

Tuesday, July 19th, 2016

He was the 7th link in the Golden Chain of the Chishti silsila. He was the successor of Hazrat Ibrahim bin Adham of Balkh and the teacher of Hazrat Khwaja Aminuddin Basri. Khwaja Sadid Uddin lived in Syria in Marshi. Unfortunately we do not have any photos of his dargha or of Marshi.

Hazrat Khwaja Sadid ad-Din Huzaifa al-Marashi r.a was a great saint of early Islamic history, known as ‘the man of secrets.’ In his childhood, he had already mastered the seven recitations of the Holy Quraan. After completing his studies, he was directed to become the murid of Hazrat Ibrahim bin Adham by none other than Hazrat Khidr a.s himself.

Khwaja Huzaifa al-Marashi used to spend all his time serving Hazrat Khwaja Ibrahim Adham r.a and on their travels together, he met the foremost saints of his time. As one might expect, Khwaja Huzaifa r.a received intensive spiritual training from his master. During his travels he used to make dhikr aloud continuously. He never asked any favours from mortals; if he needed anything he sought the aid of Allah alone, and it was produced for him from the unseen world. He also authored several works in the science of Tasawwuf.

After completing his spiritual training, he received the Khilafat from his murshid and became his foremost successor. So great was the love between master and pupil that whatever spiritual wealth Hazrat Ibrahim bin Adham received from Khidr a.s, Imam Mohammed Baqir r.a and Hazrat Fuzail bin Ayaz r.a, he gave to him.

He was a man of great humility and filled with tremendous fear of Allah. Once he was asked, “Why do you cry so much? Do you not believe in Allah’s mercy?” He replied, “In the Quran it is written that a group will be in Paradise, and another in Hell. I do not know which of these I will be in, therefore I cry.” He was then asked, “If this is your case, why do you accept people’s bayaah?” Upon hearing this, he gave an anguished sigh and passed out. When he awakened, a voice was heard by all those present giving him the glad tidings of Paradise. Upon hearing this, three hundred unbelievers accepted Islam.

Khawaja Sadid ad-Din Huzaifa Maraashi attained unity with the Beloved on the 14th Shawal 207 AH. His most famous khalifa was Khwaja Amin ad-Din Habayrah , but it is said that Imam ash-Shafi was another of them.


7th Shawwal Urs Hazrat Hubairah Basri, 287AH/900 CE

Tuesday, July 12th, 2016

Tomb Complex in Basra

Abu Hubairah Basri aka Ameen Ud Deen, was an early day Sufi Saint, a successor to Huzaifah Al-Mar’ashi, sixth link in the Sufi Silsilah of Chishti Order, and the Master of Ilm Mumshad Dinwari. He was born Basrah, Iraq around 167 Hijri He died on 7th Shawwaal 287 Hijri. He is burried in Basrah, Iraq.


6th Shawwal Urs Hazrat Khwaja Usman e Haruni, d. Makkah, 617AH/1220CE, remains brought to Ajmer 1935CE

Monday, July 11th, 2016

At The Usmani Chilla in Ajmer

(Text and photo from

Early Life

Khwaja Usman Harooni was born in Haroon, which is in Iran. According to some, he was born in 526 AH (1131 AD) and according to others, he was born in 510 AH (1116 AD). He is also known by his nicknames as Abu Noor and Abu Mansur.

When he was rather young, he came in touch with an absorbed mystic (majzub) by the name of Chirk. This association with Chirk brought about a significant transformation in his life. As a result, the material world lost its charm for him and he decided to embrace a higher moral and spiritual life.

Khwaja Usman Harooni went to meet Hazrat Haji Sharif Zindani, a renowned mystic and saint of the Chishti Order, with a request to be enrolled as his spiritual disciple. Khwaja Haji Sharif Zindani found him to be a fit person and accepted the request, by placing a four-edged cap upon the head of Khwaja Usman Harooni.

He then told him that the four-edged cap implied the following four things:
First is the renunciation of this world;
Second is the renunciation of the world hereafter;
Third is the renunciation of the desires of the self;
Fourth is the renunciation of everything other than God.

Khwaja Usman Harooni spent over thirty years in the company of his spiritual guide. During this period, he was engaged in ascetic practices and prayers. As time passed, he gained many spiritual accomplishments. He was then asked by his spiritual guide to move on and spread the Gospel of Truth.


Khwaja Usman Harooni undertook many tours and travels to preach the Gospel of Truth. In the process, he visited many countries and cities. Among them are prominent Bukhara, Baghdad, Falooja, Damascus, Mecca and Madina. During the course of his travels, he performed the Hajj, or the annual pilgrimage to Mecca.
In almost all cities, he enjoyed the company of renowned sufis and accomplished dervishes. And while on way to Oosh, he met Sheikh Bahauddin of Oosh. And when he reached Badakshan, he met a saintly man who was one of the attendants of Hazrat Junayd of Baghdad.

He reached Baghdad once again, and there he stayed for a while. During all the travels, he was accompanied by his close and dear spiritual disciple, Khwaja Moin-ud-din Hasan Chishti, who carried his tiffin basket.

After a while, Hazrat Usman Harroni visited India, during the rule of Sultan Altamish.


Khwaja Usman Harooni breathed his last on 5th of Shawaal in the year 617 AH (1220 CE). His blessings are still invoked by thousands of people belonging to every strata of society and every school of thought. While his tomb lies in Mecca, there is also a symbol of his strength and source of his blessings at the Usmani Chilla at Ajmer. Within the Usmani Chillah compound are buried the holy relics of Hazrat Khwaja Usman e Harooni, brought from Mecca in 1935 AD, by Nawab Gudri Shah Baba III.

Message and teachings

According to Khwaja Usman Harooni, a great man is one who is endowed with virtues like contentment, sincerity, self-abnegation, self-sacrifice and above all, spirit of renunciation. He said that the ego in a man was an enemy, as it did not allow him to think rationally, act wisely and live happily. He emphasised that unless a man loves human beings, it is impossible for him to love God.
His advice was simple and his message was as simple and that was “Live”.
To exist is one thing but to LIVE another. To exist means to merely breathe, but to live means to keep the welfare of fellow beings uppermost in priority. To live a good life requires a serious effort on one’s own part. No exterior agency, legislation or act can make the man a moral being. Inner discovery is very important.

To help his disciples live a better life, Khwaja Usman Harooni gave discourses at times to guide them towards a better path. Of his many teachings, prominent are:

* Once the Friend becomes your friend, the whole universe becomes yours. Then it is necessary that you should become unmindful of everything else except the Friend, should ever be with Him and should follow Him faithfully.
* According to him, the faithful is one who keeps three things dear to his heart: mendicancy, illness and death.
* It is best to not weep or wail in times of difficulty. In fact, according to the witness of Hazrat Abdullah Ansari, Holy Prophet Mohammed has laid down that the one who weeps and wails in times of trouble and tribulation invites the curse of God upon himself.
* The one who feeds the hungry is dear to God. God fulfills a thousand wants and frees such a person from hell-fire.
* He who gives food to a dervish becomes free from all sins.


Khwaja Usman Harooni was also an accomplished poet. His poetic nickname is ‘Usman’. A transliteration of one of his important works is produced hereunder. The poetic translation of the work is by Dr. Zahurul Hassan Sharib.

Namee danam key akhir chun dam e deedar mi raqsam
Magar nazam baeen zoqey key peshey yar mi raqsam
Biya jana tamasha kun key dar ambohey ja bazan
Basad saman e ruswaee sarey bazar mi raqsam

Khusha rindi key pama lash kunam sad parsaee raa
Zahey taqwa key maan ba jubba o dastar mi raqsam

Tuwan qatil key az behrey tamashan khun e man rezee
Manan bismil key zerey khanjar ey khun khar mi raqsam

Manam Usman e Harooni wa yar e shaikh e mansooram
Malamat mee kunad khalqey waman bardar mi raqsam

I do not know why at last to have a longing look I dance,
But I feel proud of the fondness that before the Friend I dance.
Thou strikest the musical instrument and lo ! everytime I dance,
In whatever way Thou causest me to dance, o Friend, I dance.

Come O Beloved ! see the spectacle that in the crowd of the intrepid and daring,
With a hundred ignomies in the heart of the market I dance.

Blessed is recklessness that I trample underfoot the very many acts of virtue,
Hail to piety that with the robe and the turban I dance.

I am Usman e Harooni and a friend of Sheikh Mansur,
They revile and rebuke and upon the gallows I dance


5th Shawwal Urs Hazrat Abdur Raheem Shah, Qazi Gudri Shah Baba II, Ajmer, India, 1344AH

Sunday, July 10th, 2016

Hazrat Gudri Shah Baba II

On a hill, a little to the south of the Chillah of Khwaja Sahib (Mounuddin Chishti (ra)), stands the holy, white shrine of Hazrat Abdur Rahim Shah, known as Qazi Gudri Shah Baba II. The shrine is a square building, standing in the centre of a strong, fort wall – Ahata Hazrat Abdur Rahim Shah.

1274 Hijra, the birth of the saint, is mentioned in the ‘Tazakara Hazrat Abdur Rahim Shah, Gudri Shah Baba’….

In the search of the Murshid or the spiritual guide who could bring him close to God, he left his native place Kashipur in U.P. and came to Ajmer.

After some years, he saw a dream in which Hazrat Khwaja Moin Uddin Hasan Chishti was in the company of Gudri Shah Baba I. Hazrat Khwaja Moin Uddin Chishti was pointing towards Gudri Shah Baba I and instructing Qazi Gudri Shah Baba to “Become his Mureed “. It still took him several years after this dream, to find Gudri Shah Baba I.

Fortunately, one evening he found him standing amidst the poor, distributing langar (bread and lentils). He immediately sprang forward and placed his hand on Gudri Shah Baba’s feet, out of respect. Afterwards, he joined his circle.

After becoming Gudri Shah Baba’s mureed, he accompanied him, travelling by foot, across Afghanistan, Iran and Iraq to Damascus, Egypt and Africa.

The grace of his murshid’s company brought a change in him enlightening him from head to feet. After the passing away of his murshid, the people began to call him, too, by the name Gudri Shah.

His simplicity and easy manners encouraged many thousands to enter his order.

Some of his well-known sayings are:

External work should be done correctly by external means.
Internal work should be done internally.

A secret talk is best done in secrecy.

He is not a faqir who lacks ability and patience.

Whoever has not seen the Truth here, will not see it there either.

At one time, a mureed asked a Qawwaal to sing a particular verse. Hazrat Gudri Shah Baba II became angry, saying ”Never ask the Qawwaal to sing a particular verse. In the verse he himself chooses to sing, there is inspiration. In that inspiration, there is the will of God, and where there is the Will of God, there is intoxication, joy, pleasure and cheerfulness.”

When the end of life drew nearer for Hazrat Qazi Gudri Shah Baba (II), he asked his most devoted mureed, Hazrat Nawab Khadim Hasan (Gudri Shah Baba III) to accompany him to the Chillah Sharif. He asked him to bring four bricks, and without speaking, placed the four bricks in the corners of what was to become his burial place. After some time, when he died, on the 5th Shawwal, 1344 AH, he was buried at the exact spot. His shrine is the focus of faith for the thousands of devotees, who celebrate his Urs each year.