Saturday, October 30, 2010

Twenty Magnificent

Hazrat Syed Abul Hasan Ali Hasani Nadwi, may Allah Most High fill his tomb with light, had a unique way of writing. Most of his books were dictated in Arabic to disciples and near and dear ones. But this is not the uniqueness we are talking about. His books were written by living the subject matter. This had serious implications. For one it is one of the things that made him Ali Miyan (RA). Secondly his books are not for light reading. There is signature of life well dedicated to Islam in each piece of writing. This style of writing by living the subject matter is what brought out the Islamic sciences out of the eclipse caused by colonialism and orientalism.

There might be, and there should be as well as there must be, other writers who adopted this approach. This post is about a book that has been written in a similar way. That is Maulana Abdul Qaiyyum Haqqani's book Twenty Magnificent (Bees Bade Auliya). Twenty Magnificent is our translation of the title of the book.

This is a book which is referred to as being unique by some very respectable people. And it is. The author writes about twenty significant friends of Allah Most High but none of the chapters is a biography. It is not a book of biographies. The author takes on a peculiar journey of spiritual nature and presents the benefits of the company of these Auliya. The company can be imaginary only because all of the Auliya are long gone (or martyred). But the journey is indeed significant in each case. The people included in the book are as follows.

  1.  Hujjat-ul-Islam Imam Ghazali (b. 450AH)(RA)
  2.  Allama Abdur Rehman Ibn-e-Jauzi (b. 508AH)(RA)
  3. Hazrat Khwaja Muinuddin Sanjari (b. 528AH)(RA)
  4. Khwaja Qutbuddin Bakhtiyar Kaki (b. 505AH)(RA)
  5. Imam Ibn-e-Taimiyya (b. 661AH)(RA)
  6. Hazrat Shaikh Abdur Rehman Jami (b. 817AH)(RA)
  7. Shaikh Abdul Haq Muhaddis Dehlwi (b. 958AH)
  8. Hazrat Mujaddid-e-Alf-e-Sani (b. 971AH)(RA)
  9. Shah Waliullah Muhaddis Dehlwi (b. 1114AH)
  10. Shah Abdul Aziz Muhaddis Dehlwi (b. 1159)(RA)
  11. Syed Ahmed Shaheed (b. 1201AH)(RA)
  12. Hazrat Maulana Muhammed Qasim Nanotwi (b. 1248AH)
  13. Hakim-ul-Ummat Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi (b. 1280AH)(RA)
  14. Allama Anwar Shah Kashmiri (b. 1292AH)(RA)
  15. Shaikh-ul-Islam Maulana Syed Husain Ahmed Madani (b. 1296AH)(RA)
  16. Maulana Muhammed Ilyas (b. 1302AH)(RA)
  17. Shaikh-ut-Tafsir Maulana Ahmed Ali Lahori (b. 1304AH)(RA)
  18. Amir-e-Shariat Syed Ataullah Shah Bukhari (b. 1310AH)
  19. Shaikh-ul-Hadis Maulana Muhammed Zakaria (b. 1315AH)(RA)
  20. Syed Muhammed Yusuf Binnori (b. 1324AH)(RA)