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Narrators of Nawawis 40 Hadith: (1) The Prophet (Allah Bless Him and Give Him Peace)


I came across this interesting brief work by Allamah Ibn Allan where he wrote regarding those illustrious companions who narrate the hadith which make up the 40 Hadith of Imam al-Nawawi.  He began his biographical entries with the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace).

Allamah Ibn Allan said in his ‘Al-Mueen ala Marifat al-Rijal al-Mazkurin fi Kitab al-Arbaeen lil-Nawawi’ p.24  onwards:

“1- Muhammad bin Abdullah bin Abd al-Muttalib, our master, Prophet, refuge and intercessor to our Lord.  Our Master Muhammad (Allah bless him and give him peace) is the most noble of His Messengers, the seal of His Prophets and most honoured with Him.  He is the greatest of them in terms of rank with Him and most magnificent.  He is the possessor of virtues which cannot ennumerated nor encompassed.

‘Indeed the excellence of the Messenger of Allah has no limit
Which can be expressed with the tongue’

He was born in Makka according to the correct opinion [after the event of al-Fil] by 50 days.  His father had passed away whilst the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) was in his mothers womb.  His mother passed away when he was 10 years of age as I detailed in the book  ‘Mawrid al-Safa fi Mawlid al-Mustafa, Allah bless him and give him peace’.  And the more correct view is that she is from the people of paradise as I detailed in my work ‘Nashr al-Alwiyah…’.  His grandfather Abd al-Muttalib died when he was ten years old.  He was sent as a Prophet at 40 years, and sent as a Messenger at 43 years.

He continued to ascend from the stations of perfection, from a station to one more perfect than it, and from a rank to one higher than it, until he perfected the religion and completed the path for Islam and the Muslims.  He was given the choice between joing the Divine Presence or remaining in the world, so he chose the Divine over the creation.

He passed away content and a martyr from the poisoned meat from Khaybar, on Monday at midday on the 12th of Rabi al-Awwal in the tenth year of prophetic migration.  He was aged 63 according to the chosen view, and was buried in Madinah al-Nabawiyyah.

His magnificent legacy and qualities cannot be contained in volumes, and cannot be encompassed by all of time.  I however intended the honouring of this book as is said:

‘I did not praise Muhammad with my words
However I praised my words with Muhammad’

Allah bless him and give him peace.”

Getting A Job


Thinking recently about work, whilst looking through the Mishkat al-Masabih I found the following discussion which might be of interest.  Under the commentary for hadith 2759:

“Miqdam bin Madi bin Karib said, “The Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace) said: No one has ever eaten food better than (the result) of his own work.  Indeed the Prophet of Allah Dawud (Upon him be peace) would eat from the his own work.”

Mulla Ali al-Qari in his Mirqat al-Mafatih (4/6) commented:

“Al-Mazhar said, in it is an encouragement to lawful work, for it consists of numerous benefits, from them being:

The attaining of benefit for the one working by his gaining a wage if he works for someone else.  And by his increasing his capital wealth if the work is to trade.

And from them is providing benefit for people by facilitating for their means such as clothing and stitching.  And the likes of these which are obtained by effort such as planting, cultivating crops and fruit.

And from them is the worker being busied with them and being saved from inactivity and timewasting

And from them is the breaking of the self by means of it such that its oppression…is lessened.

And from them is that he avoids the debasement of asking and relying upon another.

It is a condition for the person working that he believe that the provision (rizq) is not from the work, rather it is from Allah, the Generous, Provider and Possessor of Immense Power…working is from the Sunan of the Prophets…”

Etiquettes For Reading The Burda


I remember having read a while back something relating to the etiquette’s to be observed whilst reciting the Qasidat al-Burda.  I came across the following  in Allamah al-Kharputi’s commentary entitled Asidat al-Shuhdah p.3-4:

“A number of conditions are necessary in order for it to be read in the correct manner, and also in order for it to be effective in that which it is recited for.

The first of them is to perform wudu.

Second is to face the direction of prayer (qibla).

Third is precision in the correct pronunciation of the words and their irab.

Fourth is that the one reciting is knowledgeable of its meanings, because supplications are not effective if the reciter is not knowledgeable of their meanings, as was indicated to by Ali al-Qari in the introduction to his Hizb al-Azam

Fifth is its recitation is poetic form because it was authored as a poem not prose.

Sixth is memorizing it.

Seventh is that the reciter has permission to recite it from its people.

Eighth is that it is recited with the salat upon the Prophet (Upon him be peace), but it is necessary that it be with the salat which was recited by Imam al-Busiri which is:

مولاى صل و سلم دائما ابدا
على حبيبك خير الخلق كلهم

Not other than it, for if not then it will not effective as is reported by Imam al-Ghaznawi, that he would recite this qasidah every night in order to see the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) in his sleep.  He was not fortunate enough to see this vision, so he complained of this to a complete Shaykh (Shaykh Kamil), and questioned him about its secret.  The Shaykh replied that perhaps you do not pay close attention to its conditions.

He replied that “Ofcourse I pay close attention to them”, so the Shaykh contemplated and thereafter said, “I have found its secret, and it is that you do not send salat with the salat which was written by Imam al-Busiri, for he would send salat upon him (upon him be peace) with his words:

مولاى صل و سلم دائما ابدا
“على حبيبك خير الخلق كلهم

Shah Waliullah And His Link To The Ba-Alawi’s


Please find below a brief article which I have finally had the chance to publish now.  As many of you will be aware, recent years have seen the growing popularity of the Ba Alawi order in the West, more specifically amongst young people whose background is from the Indian Subcontinent.  Muslims from the Indian Subcontinent have traditionally been linked to the more widely spread Indian orders such as the Naqshbandi, Chishti, Qadiri and others (keeping in mind the Ba Alawi link to the predominantly Shafi south of India)..  Thus the recent rise in numbers of spiritual aspirants adopting the Ba Alawi way may be regarded by some as a shift from the more established Indian orders.

I was therefore interested to find that Shah Waliullah al-Dihlawi in his ‘Al-Initbah fi Salasil al-Awliyah’ makes mention of his link to the Ba Alawi order.  The relevance of this link becomes all the more significant in light of the fact that many if not all of the chains of narrations for hadith in the Indian Subcontinent link back to Shah Waliullah.  I remember a scholar describing this widespread scholarly link along the lines of, “Shah Waliullah is a tree, the branches of which are in all the houses of India’.

We could perhaps say that the Ba Alawi scholarly link to the Indian Ulema has existed for some time, but that aspects of it have only recently emerged generations later with children of immigrants from the Indian subcontinent.  The information contained in this article might also interest those scholars who have graduated from Madaris, and whose isnad links to Shah Waliullah, and might have been unaware of this link.

I would like to thank Sidi Amin Buxton for his valuable help in suggesting corrections for the translation, unfortunately the edition of the Intibah that I obtained appears to be an old Indian edition filled with scribal errors.  I would also like to thank Sidi Tahseen Khan for his help in locating a copy of this work.  Note:  I have tried to correct this passage as much as possible, including the dua in Arabic, however this still requires some attention.


Shah Waliullah al-Dihlawi said in ‘Al-Intibah fi Salasil al-Awliyah’ (p. 127) onwards:


The Madyaniyyah Order has many branches.  Amongst them very famous in Morocco is the Magharibah branch and in Hadramawt the Aydarusiyyah branch from the line of Sayyid Abdullah Aydarus Kabir.  This needy one is connected to each of them.”

Shah Waliullah mentioned some of his chains, and then went on to say:

“This needy one received this order from Shaykh Abu Tahir

From Shaykh Ahmad al-Nakhli al-Makki

From Sayyid Abd al-Rahman bin Ali Ba-Alawi the student of Sayyid Abdullah bin Alawi al Haddad and his son-in-law

From Sayyid Abdullah bin Alawi al Haddad whose nisbat in the tariqah is to Sayyid Muhammad bin Alawi who moved to Makkah

From Sayyid Abdullah bin Ali…

From Shaykh bin Abdullah al-Aydarus who is buried in Ahmadabad

From his father Sayyid Abdullah bin Shaykh

From his uncle Sayyid Abu Bakr al-Aydarus from Aden

From his father the Qutb, Sayyid Afif al-Din Abdullah al-Aydarus the senior figure to which the Aydurusiyyah branch is attributed

From his uncle Sayyid Umar al-Mihdar

From his father Sayyid Abd al-Rahman bin Muhammad Saqqaf

From his father Muhammad bin Ali Mawla al-Dawila

From his father [Ali bin Alawi]”

Shah Waliullah after citing a chain of this order said (p.134):

“We have copied this Aydarusiyyah chain (silsilah) and corrected many of the unclear names from ‘Al-Nafahat al-Qudsiyyah fi al-Khirqah al-Aydarusiyyah’ by Sayyid Abd al-Qadir al-Aydarus and from ‘Al-Mashra al-Rawi fi Aal Ba-Alawi’ by Muhammad Shilli.”

Shah Waliullah immediately thereafter wrote:

“Shaykh Abu Tahir narrated to us from Shaykh Ahmad al-Nakhli who said: I was given permission to recite this prayer (du’a) after each of the five prayers by Sayyid Abd al-Rahman bin Ali Ba-Alawi the student of Sayyid Abdullah al-Haddad and his son-in-law from his Shaykh Sayyid Abd al-Rahman bin Alawi al-Haddad Ba-Alawi (u: Sayyid Abdullah bin Alawi al Haddad) which is:

يا الله يا لطيف يا رزاق يا قوي يا عزيز أسئلك تألهاً بك و استغراقا فيك و فنائك عمن سواك و لطفاً شاملاً جلياً و خفياً و رزقاً طيباً هنيئاً و مريئاَ و قوة في ايمان و اليقين و صلابة في الحق و الدين و عذابك يدوم و يتخلد و شرفا يبقى و يتأبد لا يخالطه تكبر و لا و عتو و ارادة فساد في الارض و لا علو انك سميع قريب و صلى الله على سيدنا محمد و آله و صحبه و سلم

I say: Sayyid Abdullah al-Haddad has an anthology of poetry which is extremely fine and eloquent, it is predominantly regarding good counsel and spiritual travelling (suluk).  I was handed some of its odes (qasaid) by his grandson Sayyid Abdullah al-Aydarus wal Aydarusi.

I say: I was informed by a group from the noble Aal Ba-Alawi from amongst them Sayyid Abdullah bin Jafar Mudhar (u: Mudbar) that the noble Aal Ba-Alawi generation to generation continue to advise the reading of ‘al-Ihya’, its memorisation, acting upon that which it contains and continuity upon its awrad.  Their madhab in belief (aqaid) is the madhab of Ahl al-Sunnah wal-Jama’ah, their school in law is the Shafi school and their madhab in spiritual travel (suluk) is steadfastness upon that which is in ‘al-Ihya’, and Allah knows best.”

Placing The Hands In The Prayer: Ibn Taymiyyah


I came across this interesting discussion on where the hands should be placed in the prayer.  It is from Allamah Ibn Taymiyyah’s commentary on Imam Ibn al-Qudama’s Hanbali fiqh matn entitled ‘Al-Umdah’.  Reading it I reflected back on how interesting it would have been to have had access to this back in the 1990’s when we were desperately looking for material in defence of the Hanafi position of placing the hands under the navel.

I was unsure of how to translate the last line of this discussion, thus it is omitted, however it does not change the meaning of the passage.  There was also a typo (as far as I can tell) which I have corrected when translating.

Allamah Ibn Taymiyyah said p.67 onwards:

“And he places them both below his navel, or below his chest without either of them being disliked.

The first [placing the hands below the navel] is superior in one of the narrations from him [Imam Ahmad], which was chosen by al-Khiraqi, al-Qadi and others.  It is reported by Ahmad, Abu Dawud and al-Darqutni from Abu Juhaifah that he said:  Ali (Allah be pleased with him) said,”From the sunnah is the placing of the hand upon the other hand below the navel”.  And this [placing right hand over the left] is mentioned from the hadith of Ibn Masud from the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace), and was relied upon by Imam Ahmad.

And Ibn Battah relates from Abu Hurayrah (Allah be pleased with him) that he said, “From the sunnah is that he place his right hand in the prayer below the navel”.  And a companion if he says ‘sunnah’ it is applied to the sunnah of the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace).  And because this is far from the placing of hands upon the chest [takfir] which is disliked.

And in the other (narration) below the chest is superior which was chosen by a group of our companions due to that which is related by Jarir al-Dabbi who said,”I saw Ali grasping his left with his right on his wrist above his navel”, it was reported by Abu Dawud.  And Qubaysah bin Hulb relates from his father that he said:  “I saw the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) placing these on his chest.” And Yahys bin Saeed placed his “Right hand over the left above the joint” reported by Ahmad.

The third narration:  They are both equal, it was chosen by Ibn Abi Musa and others due to the conflicting narrations in regards to it.

As for placing them both on the chest it is disliked, as was stated.  Abi Ayub reports from Abi Mashar that he said, “It is disliked to make takfir in the prayer” and he said, “Takfir is to place the right hand upon the chest in the prayer”…”

Who Is Superior: Letter From Maqamat-e-Mazhari


Reading through the Maqamat-e-Mazhari the following caught my attention.  The extract below is taken from a letter where Shaykh Mazhar Jan-e-Janan was questioned regarding whether Shaykh Abd al-Qadir al-Jaylani or Shaykh Ahmad al-Sirhindi was superior (Allah be pleased with them both).  I hope to update this draft at a later point inshAllah. The letter is found on pg.441-442 of the work, it states:

“Letter Seven

After Praise (Hamd) and Salutations (Salat)  please find from a response from the needy one Jan-e-Janan .  I received your request for attention, in which you asked that who had attained greater superiority from between the Qayyum Rabbani Mujaddid Alf Thani [Shaykh Ahmad al-Sirhindi] and Mahbub Subhani Shaykh Abd al-Qadir Jaylani (Allah be pleased with them both)?

Makhdum! Superiority is of two categories, partial and absolute.  It is clear that your question is not regarding partial superiority, and absolute superiority is based solely on closeness to God.  Its relation is to the inward and the intellect has no role in it…it is also clear that both saints blessed existence came after the revelation of the Quran, Sunnah and consensus, and these three sources of the sacred law are silent regarding this matter.   Spiritual unveiling (kashf) is open to error, and is not a proof upon an opponent.

The statements of the murids are not relied upon because murids have love for their Shaykhs which reaches the level of excess.  Nor do we see any person of spiritual unveiling (kashf) who can fully comprehend the perfections of both these saints and can give a definitive answer on the absolute superiority of one of them.  Therefore the best means of safety is to resign the matter to the Divine Knowledge and these useless discussions should be avoided.   And one should hold the belief of the excellent qualities of both these saints…”

Forthcoming Release: Tuhfat al-Mubtadi (The Beginners Gift)


The above is a draft cover design for the forthcoming publication of the classical beginners text in Hanafi fiqh entitled T’uhfat al-Mubtadi’.

The text was authored for beginners setting out in their journey in the study of fiqh, as it only covers the subjects of purification and prayer.

The work is split in to three parts:

i) Translation of the text alongside the original Arabic

ii) Commentary of the text with detailed referencing, based on the notes of Shaykh Yahya bin Muhammad al-Mulla

iii) Appendices consisting of materials such as:  Supplications after the prayer, Information regarding al-Ahsa and a previously unpublished treatise on the Hanafi school by a recent senior Hanafi scholar from al-Ahsa.

Please find a sample of parts i) & ii) below:

Please keep an eye out for further information, likewise please feel free to submit any feedback or questions/queries regarding the work.


Shaykh Abul Hasan Zayd al-Faruqi


The following biography is based on an article authored by Shaykh Abd al-Hakim Sharaf.

Since originally writing this I have been in contact with Shaykh Abul Nasr Anas al-Faruqi, the current Shaykh of the Khanqah al-Mazhariyyah of the Naqshabandi Mujaddidi masters in Delhi.  I hope to be able to share his answers to some of my questions in the future inshAllah.

Shaykh Abul Hasan Zayd al-Faruqi

The great scholar and well known Sufi, Abul Hasan Zayd Ibn Abi al-Khayr Abdullah bin Umar Ibn Ahmad Saeed Ibn Abi Saeed al-Mujaddidi al-Faruqi was born in the city of Delhi, India on the 25th of Ramadan in the year 1324 Hijri/1906.

His lineage extends back to Imam al-Rabbani Shaykh Ahmad al-Faruqi al-Sirhindi (Allah have mercy on him) by means of 9 ancestors.

He was raised in an environment of knowledge and deep spirituality.  He began his studies with Shaykh Muhammad Umar and Mulla Amanullah, and studied with him the books of sarf and nahw up to the Kafiyah of Ibn al-Hajib.  He read some works such as Nahw Mir and al-Kafiyah with his father.

He then joined the Madrasa Mawlawi Abd al-Rab in Delhi and there studied a number of sciences with Shaykh Abd al-Wahab, Hakim Muhammmad Mazharullah and Shaykh Mahbub Ilahi.  He took hadith from Shaykh Abd al-Aliyy and Shaykh Muhammad Shafi.

Shaykh Zayd then travelled to the al-Azhar University in Cairo in the month of Dhul Qadah 1349 Hijri/1931 along with his brother Abul Sa’d Saalim.  During his time at al-Azhar amongst others he:

Attended the lessons of Sahih al-Bukhari of Shaykh Yusuf al-Dajawi al-Maliki.

He read the Sharh Ibn Aqil on the Alfiyyah Ibn Malik from Shaykh Ali Shaib Ajiz.

He heard the pattern chained hadith of firstness (musalsal bil awwaliyyah) and gained ijazah from a number of scholars, amongst them being:

Shaykh Muhammad Bukhit al-Muti’i

Shaykh Muhammad Habibullah al-Shinqiti

The Muhaddith of Morroco, Sayyid Muhammad Abd al-Hayy al-Kattani, this was during his stay of a few days in Egypt in 1351 on his way to visit the Holy sanctuaries.

He gained an ijazah in hadith from the major hadith specialist in Syria, Shaykh Badr al-Din al-Hasani.  This was my means of letter in the year 1351.

In the year 1350 he travelled to the Haramayn and heard the musalsalat narrations from Shaykh Abil Fayd Abil Isaad Abd al-Sattar al-Siddiqi Ibn Mawlawi Abd al-Wahab al-Dihlawi, then al-Makki, and gained an ijazah from him in the year 1351.

He heard the ten musalsal hadith from Shaykh al-Sayyid Ahmad Sharif al-Sanusi and gained ijazah from him in the year 1351.

He sat the exam from the Alamiyyah certificate of al-Azhar and passed in the year 1354 Hijri/1935.

He returned from Cairo on the 26th of Ramadan in the year 1354 Hijri/1935.

He took bayah at the hands of his father Shaykh Abul Khayr Abdullah in the year 1335 and his father authorised him to guide others in the Naqshabandi Mujaddidi order in the year 1340 Hijri.

He was honoured to perform the Hajj and visitation in the years 1346, 1350 and then in 1386.

He married in 1345 Hijri/1925 and was blessed with 3 sons and 6 daughters.
He had a son Abu Turab Hamid in the year 1358 who died at birth.
He had a son Abul Khayr in the year 1360 who passed away at the age of three.
He had a son Muhammad Abul Fadl in the year 1355 who was a doctor and passed away during his fathers lifetime in the year 1404 Hijri/1984.  He left behind a pious grandson named Abul Nasr Anas born in 1391 Hijri/1971 who has sought knowledge and is currently the Shaykh of the Khanqah of his forefathers.

Shaykh Zayd was a poet in the Arabic, Persian and Urdu languages.  He authored a number of works indicating to his expertise in the Islamic sciences, as well as Arabic, Persian and Urdu, they are as follows:

1- Asanid al-Aliyah in Arabic (unpublished)
2- Khayr al-Mazid fi Irab al-Ayah wa Kalimah al-Tawhid in Arabic (unpublished)
3- Qawl al-Sanni fi al-Dhab an Shaykh Abd al-Ghani (unpublished)
4- Hujja fi Masala al-Layha wal Qabda in Persian (unpublished)
5- Bazm Khayr az Zayd Dar Jawab Bazm Jamshaid in Urdu (On his father Shaykh Abul Khayr)
6- Majmua Khayr al-Bayan (On the Mawlid al-Sharif)
7- Manahij al-Sayr wa Madarij al-Khayr in Persian (On the Naqshabandi Mujaddidi spiritual path)
8- Taqwim al-Khayri – On how to calculate the Hijri and CE dates (unpublished)
9- Khayr al-Maqal fi Ruyah al-Hilal in Urdu
10- Allamah Ibn Taymiyyah aur Un Ki Ham Asr Ulama in Urdu
11- Masala Dabt Wilada – On the issue of birth control in Urdu
12- Manhaj al-Aba fi Salam ala al-Anbiyah wal-Rida an Awliyah in Persian and Urdu.
13- Risala Wahdat al-Wujud in Persian and Urdu
14- Nabaqat bin Tabaqan [sic] in Arabic
15- Maqamat Khayr on his father and ancestors
16- Maqamat Akhyar in Persian
17- Aik Ilmi Maqala in Urdu on the life of Imam al-Rabbani.
18- Hazrat Mujaddid aur Un Ki Naqidin in Urdu.
19- Sawanih Hayat Shah Bilal in Urdu
20- Mawlana Ismail Dihlawi aur Taqwiyat al-Iman in Urdu, in which he refuted 7 issues from the Taqwiyat al-Iman.
21- Masala al-Masajid al-Mahjura in Arabic
22- Sarir al-Yara li Irtishaf Himya al-Sama in Urdu
23- Introduction in Urdu to Qawl al-Jalli fi Zikr Athar al-Wali, the biography of Shah Waliullah al-Dihlawi.
24- Introduction to Tasawwuf articles of Sayyid Wahid Ashraf al-Ashrafi al-Jaylani.
25- Sawanih Imam Azam in Urdu, a biography of Imam Abu Hanifah.
26- Zikriyyat Ayam Zayd, stories and incidents from his life (unpublished).
27- Naja al-Arib wa Safra al-Labib

Shaykh Abul Hasan Zayd al-Faruqi was from the great Naqshabandi Mujaddidi scholars.  A large number of people from India, Afghanistan and Quetta in Pakistan took the spiritual path from him.

He travelled on to the next world on the 15th of Jamadi al-Akhirah in the year 1414 Hijri corresponding to the 1st of December 1994.  He was buried next to his noble ancestors in the Zawiyah of Shah Abu al-Khayr in Delhi.

May Allah (most High) have mercy on him and all of the Muslims