Khawaja Shaykh Qutb al-Din Mawdud al-Chisti [d.527H/1133CE] ‘alayhi al-rahmah wa’l-ridwan
Hadrat Khawaja Mawdud al-Chishti aka Shams Sufiyaan, Chiraag Chishtiyaan, was a great sufi saint and a learned Islamic scholar of his time. He was a successor to his father and murshid ABU YUSUF NASIR AL-DIN BIN SAMAAN, in the Chishti silsila, and the murshid of KHAWAJA HAJI SHAREEF AL-ZANDANI Rahmatullahi alayh.
He was born around 430 Hijri in the city of Chisht, Afghanistan. He initially received education from his noble father Khawaja Abu Yusuf Nasir al-Din Samaan Rahmatullahi alayh, and by the tender age of seven  he had memorised the complete Qur’an al karim. He went on to complete his education at the age of 16. Khawaja Mawdud al-Chishti Rahmatullahi alayh was particularly known for his very strict adherence to observing the shari’ah [Islamic Law]. Whenever he desired to do anything, he always first supplicated in the court of Allah the Almighty. Legend has it that if anybody stayed in his Khanqah for at least three days, all their difficulties were removed, and they became perfect [kamil] sufis by attaining nearness to Allah.
Hadrat Khawaja al-Mawdud Chisti Rahmatullahi alayh became the mureed [disciple] of Hadrat Khawaja Nasir al-Din Yusuf Chisti Rahmatullahi alayh. After he became a mureed, his murshid [master] addressed him by saying, “Oh! Qutbuddin Moudood, adopt of the path of the faqr.” (The word faqr is literally translated as poverty, but in the language of tasawwuf, it means to be rich with Allah. It is for one to have total trust in Allah, and not to be dependant on any other but Allah) faqr is the way of the true dervishes. The more one travels on the path of faqr, the higher one’s status becomes. The Beloved Messenger of Allah Salla Allahu ta’ala ‘alayhi wa Sallam is the leader of all the ambiya [Prophet’s] ‘alaihim as-salaam and dervishes, and he adopted this path. He said; “Faqr is my pride,” and after returning from the night of mi’raj [ascension], he performed ‘Fajr Salaah’ [dawn prayer] with all the sahaba al-kiram [Noble Companions] behind him, and afterwards made du’a [supplication] to Allah by saying;
“O Allah, let me live amongst the poor, take my life away whilst amongst the poor, and raise me on the day of Qiyaamat amongst the poor.” All our Grand Masters loved the faqirs, and to love the poor is the sunnah [tradition] of Rasulallah Salla Allahu ta’ala ‘alayhi wa Sallam, “and remember, whoever loves the poor and destitute, is loved and worthy of respect, and whoever shows enmity to the poor, stay your distance away from them because they insult the sunnah of Rasulallah Salla Allahu ta’ala ‘alayhi wa Sallam.”
Khawaja Mawdud al Chisti Rahmatullahi alayh accepted his murshid’s [spiritual guide] advice. Shortly after he went into seclusion and remained absorbed in worship of his Creator for twenty years. During this period, he rarely ate and was reported to complete two (‘complete’) recitations of the Qur’an during the day, and two during the night. He also used to constantly make the dhikr of “La ilaha illallah.” Due to all his consistent ibadah [worship], everything that was happening in the universe became apparent to him, and nothing was kept hidden.
Some of Qutb al-Din Mawdud Chisti Rahmatullahi alayh’s scholarly work includes two books by the name of ‘Minhaj al-Arifin’ and ‘Khulasat al-Shari’ah’. Khawaja Qutb al-Din Mawdud Chisti Rahmatullahi alayh died around Rajab 527 Hijri and is buried in his place of birth; Chisht, near Herat in Afghanistan.