Calling time on caretakers of J&K’s Sufi shrines
- September 2, 2022
- Posted by: OptimizeIAS Team
- Category: DPN Topics
Calling time on caretakers of J&K’s Sufi shrines
Subject :Science and Technology
Section : Biotechnology
The medieval period witnessed the rise and development of a large number of Muslim religious movements, mystic organizations, religious cults and attitudes.
The Islamic mysticism was known as Sufism.
- It aims at establishing direct communion between God and man through personal experience of mystery which lies within Islam.
- Every religion gives rise to mystical tendencies in its fold at a particular stage of its evolution. In this sense, sufism was a natural development within Islam based on the spirit of Quaranic piety.
- In Sufism, self discipline is considered an essential condition to gain knowledge of God by sense of perception.
- Unlike orthodox Muslims which emphasise on external conduct, the Sufis lay stress on inner purity.
- Sufis believe service to humanity is tantamount to service to God.
The characteristics of Sufism are:
- Fana: Devotee’s spiritual union with Allah.
- Insan-e-kamil: A perfect human being with all nice qualities.
- Zikr-tauba: Continual remembrance of God (zikr)
- Wahdatul-wajood: There is only one god for the entire cosmos; god and being are one.
- Sama: Spiritual dance and music are used to promote their ideas, despite the fact that music is not permitted in Islam.
Sufi Orders in India
- Sufis were eventually organised into orders or ‘silsilas.’
- Ain-i-Akbari mentions around dozen silsilahs. They were divided into two groups: ‘Beshara’ and ‘Ba-shara.’
- The Bashara Sufis followed Islamic law (i.e. Sharia), and the silsilah (continuity) established by one saint was carried on by his disciples.
- There were 12 of these silsilahs. They include silsilahs such as Chishti, Suhrawardi, Firdausi, Qadariya, and Naqshbandi, among others.
- Sharia was not accepted by the Be-shara. They were dubbed ‘Mast kalandars/Malangs/Haidaris’.
- These wandering saints were commonly referred to as ‘babas.’ They didn’t leave many written accounts.
- They usually practised very strict asceticism and defied or ignored the rituals.
Some of the important Sufi orders are:
- It was founded by Sheikh Abdul Chisti
- It was introduced in India by Sheikh Moinuddin Chisti. His Dargah is at Ajmer
- QutubuddinBakhtiar Kaki was the chief disciple of Moinuddin.
- Iltutmush dedicated Qutub Minar to Bakhtiar Kaki
- Sheikh Nizamuddin was the most popular Sufi saint in India. Amir Khusro, the greatest musician and literary giant was also the disciple of Sheikh Nizamuddin.
- A system called Nadasampradaya was followed which meant burying disciples near as one family
- Sheikh Salim Chisti was the last great saint of this order. He was held in great respect by Akbar.
- Qamkhana were hermitages of Chisti saints outside the city
- It was founded by ShihabuddinShuhrawardi
- It was introduced in India by Bhauddin
- It was the richest order and very soon became unpopular
- It was the only Sufi order which was founded and developed within India
- It was founded by Sharafuddin, it was confined to Bihar
- He composed Maqtubat and Mulfazat literature
- The above dealt with the lives and teachings of Sufi saints
- It was the most secular Sufi silsila
- It was founded by Sheikh Jilani Qadri
- Dara Shikoh, son of Shah Jahan followed this order
- It was founded by Sheikh Biqabullah
- It was introduced into India by Sheikh Pirsai
- Sheikh Niyamtulla was the greatest scholar of this school
- It was the most conservative of the orders. Aurangzeb followed this order
- This order of the sufis is from Kashmir
- This order was founded by Shaikh NuruddinWdi and it had profound influence of non-conformist ideas of the famous 14th century women bhakti-preacher, Lal Ded (was a Kashmiri mystic of the Kashmir Shaivism school of philosophy).
Malfuzat (Conversations of the Sufi saints)
- Malfuzats were compiled by different Sufi Silsilahs, with the permission of the Shaikhs, these had obvious didactic purposes.
Maktubat (Collections of letters)
- Letters written by Sufi masters, addressed to their disciples and associates – while these tell us about the Shaikh’s experience of religious truth that he wanted to share with others, they also reflect the life conditions of the recipients and are responses to their aspirations and difficulties, both spiritual and mundane.
Tazkiras (Biographical accounts of the saints)
- The most famous Tazkira is the Akhbar-ul-Akhyar of Abdul Haqq MuhaddisDehlavi. The authors of the Tazkiras often sought to establish the precedence of their own orders and glorify their spiritual genealogies.
Sufi Shrines in India
Ajmer Sharif in Rajasthan
- The Dargah or Sufi shrine in Rajasthan’s Ajmer is one of the most renowned Muslim Shrines in India that welcomes thousands of devotees every year from different religious groups.
- The shrine is the resting place of noble Sufi saint Khwaja Moin-Ud-Din Chisti.
- Khwaja Moin-Ud-Din is not only a religious figure but also an epitome of humanism. He dedicated his entire life to serving the poor and neglected people of society. He is also known as Garib Nawaz.
- Having been built by Mughal Emperor Humayun, the shrine is a glorious instance of Mughal architecture.
Hazrat Nizamuddin Dargah in Delhi
- Having been built in the memory of the globally renowned Sufi saint, Nizamuddin Chisti, the Dargah of Hazrat Nizamuddin is located in the Indian capital of Delhi.
- Being constructed in 1526, the Dargah still carries the traditional values of Sufism and welcomes people from all religions with equal warmth.
- Besides Nizamuddin Chisti, noble Muslim people like Jahan Ara Begum, Inayat Khan, and Urdu poet Amir Khusro are also buried inside this sacred Dargah complex.
Sheikh Salim Chisti Dargah in Fatehpur Sikri
- The Dargah of Sheikh Salim Ali Chisti in the royal Fatepur Sikri complex is also another beautiful instance of Mughal architecture.
- Mughal Emperor Akbar constructed the Dargah in the memory of the Sufi Saint Sheikh Salim Ali Chisti whom he met before the birth of Jehangir.
- Salim Chisti predicted the birth of a male heir on the Mughal throne and therefore, Jehangir was also named after him as “Salim”.
- The tomb of Salim Ali Chisti is built with sterling white marble.
Haji Ali Dargah in Mumbai
- The Haji Ali Dargah in Mumbai is located on the beautiful background of the Arabian Sea. Despite being a wealthy merchant, Haji Ali left all the material possessions after his visit to Mecca and became a Sufi saint.
- A little islet on the southern coast of Mumbai is home to this famous Dargah
Khanqah of Shah Hamdan
- It is also famous by the name of Shah-i-Hamdan Mosque and Khanqah-e-Molla was built by Sultan Sikander in 1400 AD on the banks of the river Jhelum in Srinagar. The mosque was constructed in honour of Mir Syed Ali Hamdani, the Muslim saint who first popularised the religion of Islam in Jammu and Kashmir.
- It is dedicated to Persian saint Mir Sayyid Ali Hamdani, who propagated Islam in Kashmir in the 14th century.