Archive for March, 2017

27 March (CE Calendar) Mela Chiraghan-Urs Hazrat Shah Hussain-Madho Lal Hussain-1599CE Lahore

Monday, March 27th, 2017
Mazar of Madho Lal Hussain


Shah Hussain (1538 – 1599) was a Punjabi Sufi poet and Sufi saint. He was the son of Sheikh Usman, a weaver, and belonged to the Dhudha clan of Rajputs. He was born in Lahore (present-day Pakistan). He is considered a pioneer of the kafi form of Punjabi poetry.

Shah Hussain’s love for a Brahmin boy called “Madho” or “Madho Lal” is famous, and they are often referred to as a single person with the composite name of “Madho Lal Hussain”. Madho’s tomb lies next to Hussain’s in the shrine.

His tomb and shrine lies in Baghbanpura, adjacent to the Shalimar Gardens. His urs (annual death anniversary) is celebrated at his shrine every year during the “Mela Chiraghan” (“Festival of Lights”).

Hussain’s poetry consists entirely of short poems known as “Kafis.” A typical Hussain Kafi contains a refrain and some rhymed lines. The number of rhymed lines is usually from four to ten. Only occasionally a more complete form is adopted. Hussain’s “Kafis” are also composed for and have been set to music deriving from Punjabi folk music.


27th Jumada ath Thani Urs Mawlana Fakhr al-Din, Mehroli, Delhi, India 1199/1785

Sunday, March 26th, 2017

Mawlana Fakhr al Din

27th Jumada ath Thani Urs Mawlana Fakhr al-Din 1199/1785.

Hazrat Moulana Fakhr al-Din(ra) (also spelled Fakhrudeen) was one of the most brilliant of Islamic scholars in India, as well as being one of the most popular of the Chishtia saints. Indeed, this noble personality’s influence is so great that it is said that after Khwaja Moinudeen Chishti (rahmatullahi alaihi) and his immediate successors (the Big Five), Moulana Fakhr al-Din(ra) is regarded as being the most influential figure in the spread of the Chishtia order. All contemporary branches of the order are directly linked to the great Moulana, and his services and dedication to Islam have rarely been equalled.

Moulana Shah Fakhrudeen (rahmatullahi alaihi) was born in Aurangabad, India in 1715CE (1126AH). He was the son of the famous saint of Aurangabad, Khwaja Nizamudeen Aurangabadi (rahmatullahi alaihi), as well as being a descendant of Sayyidina Abu Bakr As-Siddiq (rahmatullahi alaihi) from his paternal side and the Holy Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) from his maternal side. When word of his birth reached Hazrat Shah Kalimullah (rahmatullahi alaihi) of Delhi, he personally named the child “Fakhrudeen” and gave him a piece of his own kharqa (patched frock). Hazrat Shah Kalimullah (rahmatullahi alaihi) also imparted the title “Moulana” to the newborn, and foretold that he would be a great scholar and saint. When Shah Nizamudeen (rahmatullahi alaihi) was on his deathbed, he held his son close to him, reading the qur’anic verse,”…I have breathed into him of my own spirit…”

Thereafter, he named his sixteen year old son as his khalifa. For the next three years Moulana Fakhrudeen (rahmatullahi alaihi) worked hard at completing his religious and literary education, and the following eight years were spent in ascetic exercises, mujahedas and meditation. On occasion his admirers were awed to find Moulana Fakhrudeen (rahmatullahi alaihi) in a state of ecstasy, uttering remarks similar to the mystically intoxicated sufis of legend. By joining the military service of Nawab Nizamud-daula, he sought to be free of his growing reputation, but his fame soon began to be spoken of in the very camp, and he had to resign. Word of his sainthood began to spread, and due to increasing demands from his disciples, he moved from Aurangabad to Delhi in the hope of escaping the attention. On his journey to Delhi, a blind Hindu woman approached the caravan in which Moulana Fakhrudeen (rahmatullahi alaihi) was travelling. Giving a perfect description of him, she related that her goddess, Bhavani, had told him that this man would restore her sight. The great Moulana assured her that he was a common soldier, and could not perform miracles; but some time before the caravan departed, he prayed for her, and Allah restored her eyesight.

In Delhi, at the now famous Ajmer Gate, Moulana Fakhrudeen (rahmatullahi alaihi) opened a great university where he began conducting classes in various Islamic disciplines. He later opened a khanqah (spiritual centre) where he trained seekers on the path to Allah. The focus of his teachings was primarily directed towards Qur’an and hadith. He was an ardent devotee of the Holy Prophet (Peace and Blessings be Upon him), hence the appellation “Muhibbun Nabi”. He was scrupulous in his imitation of the sunnah out of love for Huzoor Paak (sallallahu alaihi wasallam), and continuously stressed the importance of this to his mureeds. Such was his devotion that just prior to his demise, he was unable to trim his bread due to weakness. At this he expressed great sorrow and lamented that it had grown beyond the required length as portrayed in the practice of the Holy Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam). This love for Allah and his prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) he imparted to his disciples and devotees.

Moulana Fakhrudeen (rahmatullahi alaihi)’s demeanour and personality was like a magnet that attracted people so greatly that even those initially opposed him and expressed their hatred of him eventually became his faithful followers. Once an afghan who entered his university with the intention of murder happened to sit in a gathering Moulana was addressing; by the end of the lecture, he repented and became Moulana Fakhrudeen (rahmatullahi alaihi)’s disciple.

Hazrat Moulana Fakhrudeen (rahmatullahi alaihi) was pivotally involved in the reformation of Muslim society and actively campaigned for the correct implementation and practice of the Holy Qur’an and the sacred traditions of Rasulallah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam). His reformations did not stop at the masses, however. Emperors such as Ghaziuddeen Khan, his son and Emperor Shah Alam his mureeds. Another famous emperor of India, Bahadur Shah Zafar, was a great lover of Moulana Fakhrudeen (rahmatullahi alaihi) and devoted many of his poems to the great saint. In one poem the emperor says,

“I am a devotee of Qutbudeen
And dust at the feet of Fakhrudeen.
A king I may be
But a lowly servant of Fakhrudeen I seem.” Thousands of students and disciples achieved great benefit at the hand of this great servant of Islam, and the knowledge that he imparted still bears its fruit today. Hazrat Moulana Fakhrudeen Muhibbun Nabi Delhawi (rahmatullahi alaihi) passed away on the 27th Jamaad-us-Saani in 1199AH at the age of 73 years, but his legacy lives on and will Insha-allah continue till the day of Qiyaamat.

The beloved sleeps, covering her face with the beautiful locks of her hair.
Khusro, go home! The darkness of evening has engulfed the whole world.

25th Jumada ath-Thani Urs Mohammad Farhad Delvi, Delhi 1135AH/1723CE

Friday, March 24th, 2017
People gathered at the Dargah of Mohammad Farhad

People gathered at the Dargah of Mohammad Farhad

Shah Farhad was born in Delhi but grew up in Burhanpur in central India where his father was a governor. As a child, he got attached to the sufi mystic Dost Mohammed who initiated him in the Abul Ulai order, an offshoot of the Chishti order. The young Farhad became involved in the remembrance of God, and to the despair of his father, he gradually let go of his worldly existence. He stopped paying attention to clothes and food. He reached the state of baqa, continuance in God, and gained a reputation of purifying the souls of people by his glance alone. Shah Farhad later settled in Delhi where he acquired a large following among Delhiwallas, both Muslims and Hindus.

He died on 25 Jumada ath Thani 1135 Hijri; in 1723 CE. In Sufism, the death of a saint is celebrated as the occasion when his soul gets freedom from the body and is united with that of his beloved, the God. Urs means ‘wedding’ in Arabic.

Every morning before opening their stores, the traders in the neighbourhood come to the dargah to get their shop keys blessed by Shah Farhad. Childless women come asking for children. Students come to get their books blessed. “This shrine has a lot of benevolence,” says Sadia Dehlvi, author of Sufism: The Heart of Islam. “Your wishes are granted here.”

Shah Farhad’s shrine is also a place where you come to get rid of djinns, the mysterious beings who, according to Islamic beliefs, are made of smokeless fire. These supernatural creatures are everywhere but remain invisible. Sometimes they trap vulnerable people in their spell and make their life miserable. These possessed men and women then visit shrinks and shrines to become normal again. Some come to the dargah of Shah Farhad, also known as Sheikh ul Djinn, the master of djinns. Clinging to the grills, the tormented scream and shiver in agony, asking the djinns to leave them. If they become free, they become life long followers of the saint. There must be many such people in this multitude tonight. Who knows there may also be djinns.


25th Jumada ath-Thani Urs Hazrat Khwaja Baqi Billah, Old Delhi, 1012AH/1603CE

Friday, March 24th, 2017

Dargah of Baqi Billah in Old Delhi

Khwaja Baqi Billah (1563-1603) was a Sufi saint from Kabul.

Founder of the Naqshbandia silsila in the Indian sub-continent, Hazrat Billah was born in 16th century Kabul. After wandering through cities like Samarkand, Balkh, Lahore and Multan, he settled in Delhi to spread the deen. Here he died; here he was buried making this burial ground a favorite among Delhi’s Muslims.

Saintliness was reflected from his face from his early childhood. He liked solitude and simple life. He went to Mavara-un-Nahr, which was considered as the centre of Muslim saints at that time. There he met a large number of Sufis and Saint from whom he gathered a lot of spiritual knowledge. Firstly, he attended Khawaja Ubaid a spiritual caliph of Maulana Lutf Ullah but he was not satisfied. Then he stayed with Hazrat Sheikh Samarkandi who prayed for him but even in his company he did not get the requisite satisfaction. Thereafter, he attended the company of Hazrat Ameer Abdullah Balkhi from whom he got a little peace of mind.

During the period of learning, he was going through a book on Sufisim. Suddenly, he saw that the place was illuminated with light. He saw that Khawaja Baha-ud-Din Nashbandi was standing before him and showering spiritual favour on him.

After this incident, his heart was filled with the love of Allah and Muhammad. He wandered from Central Asia to India He traveled to Lahore and Multan on foot. Once, when he was offering prayers in a mosque at Lahore, a terrible voice rose from his heart. All the people in the mosque felt terrified. Hazrat Khawaja left the mosque at once after completing his prayers. One of his devotees narrated that, once, when Hazrat Khawaja was leading prayers, he was looking to Qibla as well as to the people behind. After the prayers Hazrat Khawaja Sahib advised his devotees not to divulge this secret to anyone else.

Hazrat Khawaja Baqi Billah once travelled to Mavara-ur-Nahr. On his way, he dreamt that Hazrat Khawaja Amkangi was calling him and waiting for him anxiously. So, he went to see him at his abode and stayed there for three days. Khawaja Amkangi blessed him with his Khilafat (spiritual caliphate) and said:

“Go to India because this Order (Naqshbandia Silsila) will be established there by you”

Hazrat Khawaja Baqi Billah humbly said to his spiritual guide that he could not do that difficult task, but Khawaja Amkangi insisted and ordered him to get guidance from “Istikharah” (prayer for getting judgment from Allah), Hazrat Khawaja performed “Istikhara”. In a dream he saw a parrot sitting on the branch of a tree. He thought that if the parrot sat on his hand, he would consider this journey as a lucky one. No sooner did this thought flashed across his mind, than the parrot flew towards him and perched on his hand. Hazrat Baqi Billah put his saliva into its beak whereas the parrot put sugar into his mouth.

Hazrat Khwaja Baqi Billah strengthened the Naqshbandia Order in India. His contacts with the nobility of the Mughal Empire proved useful for the reformation of the Muslims of India. He took bold steps and played a heroic role to stop the prevailing heresy known as Din-i-Ilahi. His writings and counsels encouraged the people to combat this very innovation. The nobility also favoured him and he used their power for the betterment of the Muslims. He stressed on Sharia during the whole of his life and influenced the people by virtue of his piety and his strict adherence to the Sunnah. He preferred Sharia to Tariqah (Sufism) and reformed the Sufis and Ulama of that time. Khwaja Muhammad Kishmi, a disciple of Hazrat Mujaddid Alif Sani, writes about the achievements of Hazrat Baqi Billah as under:

“Probably his greatest achievement is that in two or three years, he firmly established the Naqshbandi Order in India, whereas others of the same Order lagged behind and worked for many years”.

Hazrat Khwaja Baqi Billah R.A went his way to eternity on 25 Jamadi-ul-Sani (Jumada ath Thani) 1012 A.H. or 1603 A.D. His grave is situated in Delhi near the Qadam Sharif (foot-prints) of Muhammad at a platform. No dome was constructed over his grave according to his will. There is no tree to cast a shadow on the grave. In spite of this, the visitors do not feel the effect of heat when they stand barefooted beside the grave.


20th Jumada ath Thani Birth Bibi Fatima, Mecca, Saudi Arabia, 18AH

Sunday, March 19th, 2017

Tomb of Bibi Fatima (ra)

Fatimah, daughter of the Holy Prophet of Islam, was born in Mecca on 20th Jumada ath Thani 18BH. The good and noble lady Khadijah and the Apostle Of Allah bestowed all their natural love, care and devotion on their lovable and only child Fatimah.

The Princess of the House of the Prophet, was very intelligent, accomplished and cheerful. Her sermons, poems and sayings serve, as an index to her strength of character and nobility of mind. Her virtues gained her the title “Our Lady of Light”. She was tall, slender and endowed with great beauty, which caused her to be called “az-Zahra'” (the Lady of Light). She was called az-Zahra’ also because her light used to shine among those in heaven.

After arriving in Medina, she was married to ‘Ali, in the first year after Hijrah, and she gave birth to three sons and two daughters. Her children, Hasan, Husayn, Zaynab and Umm Kulthum are well-known for their piety, goodness and generosity. Their strength of character and actions changed the course of history. The Holy Prophet said, “Fatimah is a piece of my heart”. He would go out to receive his daughter whenever she came from her husband’s house. Every morning on his way to the Mosque, he would pass by Fatimah’s house and say, “as-Salamu ‘alaykum ya ahli bayti ‘n-nubuwwah wa ma’dani ‘r-risalah” (peace be on you O the Household of Prophethood and the Source of Messengership).
The Best Woman
Fatimah is famous and acknowledged as the “Sayyidatu nisa’i ‘l-‘alamin” (Leader of all the women of the world for all times) because the Prophethood of Muhammad would not have been everlasting without her. The Prophet is the perfect example for men, but could not be so for women. For all the verses revealed in the Holy Qur’an for women, Fatimah is the perfect model, who translated every verse into action. In her lifetime, she was a complete woman, being Daughter, Wife and Mother at the same time. As a daughter, she loved her so much, that she won their love and regard to such an extent that the Holy Prophet used to rise, whenever she came near him. As a wife, she was very devoted. she never asked ‘Ali for anything in her whole life. As a mother, she cared for and brought up wonderful children; they have left their marks on the face of the world, which time will not be able to erase.

The death of the Apostle, affected her very much and she was very sad and grief-stricken and wept her heart out crying all the time. The tragedy of her father’s death was too much for the good, gentle and sensitive lady and she breathed her last on 14th jumada ‘l-ula 11 A.H., exactly seventy-five days after the death of her father, the Holy Prophet of Islam. Fatimah died in the prime of her life at the age of eighteen, and was buried in Jannatu ‘l-Baqi’, Medina.
Just a note – Jannatu’l Baqi is the cemetery where many of the original Muslims of Medina were buried. It was leveled by the Saudis because of their distaste for people visiting the graves. That is why this grave of this great woman looks so simple. But despite the authorities there, people do still visit and pay their respects, subhan’allah!