Shah e Hamadan: Spiritual leadership

Much has already been written and said on the life and teachings of Ameer-e-Kabeer Mir Syed Ali Hamadani. We all knew that he was a great saint, scholar, and a religious leader of the 14th century AD.

He was also a great intellectual philosopher, writer and traveler. He enlightened the masses about the universal brotherhood, equality, and brought them to the path of genuine spiritualism.

Hamadani had no army to conquer Kashmir, and to establish his rule here. He arrived here with his men, not in uniform, but in spiritual dress to win the hearts of deprived Kashmeris and show them the path of genuine Sufism.

Since he was already fed up by the political gimmicks and was very much aware of the political interests of his contemporary Muslim powers. He was fed up of the tyranny of Tatars who has been ruling major portion of central Asia.

He knew that most of Muslim rulers have forgotten the basic tenets of Islam. He was watching the mess, and what was being done in the name of Islam in the Muslim world of his time.

As such his mission was quite different from the Muslim conquerers. He arrived here to enlighten this Garden of Soloman with real Tawheed.

During those times Kashmiris were living in fear, uncertainty, ignorance, inequality of caste system and poverty. He brought new hope, new life of living in peace, with respect, dignity, and equal human rights, in a just and fair society. He revolutionised the Kashmiri society through Islamic teachings and brought prosperity, stability and tranquility for the first time to this nation.

It was the time when Hindu and Buddhist mysticism was ruling the minds and souls of Kashmiris. To free Kashmiris from the clutches of ignorance Shah-e-Hamdan set the tradition of Khanqah where people of all castes and creeds were most welcome to debate the oneness of God, and understand genuine spirituality.

This type of Khanqahiyat was an alternative to the temples and Buddhist monasteries. Since he set this tradition his successors continued this tradition and raised several khanqahs in different areas of Kashmir. The present Khanqah at Fatah Kadal Srinagar is the most significant wooden monument of Kashmir valley. Its interior wooden cells decorated with wonderful designs and inscriptions constitute fine example of Kashmir’s Khanqah architecture.

Hazrat Amir-e-Kabeer , Mir Syed Ali Hamdani, was born in Hamadan (Iran) on 14th of Rajab 714 H (1312 B.C.). His father was Syed Shahabuddin. He was the decedent of Imam Hussain and his mother Fatima was decedent of Imam Hassan.

Syed Ali Hamadani came to Kashmir for the first in 774H (1372 B.C.) with the message of complete submission to only one God, and blessed the people with the true teaching of the Prophet (SAW). This visit lasted for 4 to 6 months. During this brief stay he held intellectual and spiritual debates with scholars and priests of temples.

The second visit lasted for two and a half years (781 H to 784 H) (1378 to 1381 A.D.) This time he was accompanied by 700 Missionaries. The third visit lasted for a year in 785 H (1383 A.D). He left via pakhle and breathed his last at the age of 71 on Wednesday night the 6th of zil-hajja 786 h (19th January, 1385 AD) at Kuz (Sawat) Pakistan in 786 H. His earthly remains were taken by Sheikh Qavam-u-Din Badakhshi to Dushamba (Khatlan), in Tajkistan.

One can understand the intellectual caliber and spiritual legacy of this Syed from the Persian compositions of Alama Iqbal like spiritual guides.

The Syed sublime noble of nobles

Ghazali himself the lesson of ‘God is He’

And drew meditation and thought from his stock,

Guide he of that emerald land,”

Since we claim, remembering this great saint but we are the people who have forgotten Sufi teachings of this great saint and have driven out his Sufi compositions of Awardi Fathiyyah from our mosques and homes as well. The new generations have also been kept unaware of his Sufi compositions and there is no formal arrangement to teach his compositions to our youth.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are the personal opinions of the author.

The facts, analysis, assumptions and perspective appearing in the article do not reflect the views of GK.

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