HAROON RASHID BHAT
He took his last breath in Madina and was buried in the Mazaar Al- Baqi. Almost all the prominent historians like M. Azam Dedmari, Peer Hassan Shah Khouhami, etc. mentioned his brief biography in their historical accounts”
Among the disciples of Sheikh Hamza Mukdoom RA, Khawaja Moulana Afzal Shamsu-Din Pal has a distinctive identity. His in-depth religious knowledge is reflected in the fact that a prolific scholar in the contemporary period- Khawaja Dawood Toosi was deeply impressed by him and he attained his tutelage. Later this teacher-pupil relationship that developed between Shamsu-Din and Dawood Toosi became the reason for his connection with the Suharwardhi lineage through the spiritual guidance of Sheikh Hamza Makdoom RA. There is a very interesting and lesson-oriented episode associated with his first meeting with Sheikh Hamza Mukdoom RA. Historians narrated that particular episode like this: “As we mentioned that Dawood Toosi was his student who was receiving Zahiri Uloom from him at his Darasghah (An institution where Islamic knowledge is imparted) one-day Shamsu-Din enquired the reason for the prolonged absence of his student- Dawood Toosi. The students who were enrolled there informed him that his dearest student is now spending most of his time in the company of Sheikh Hamza Makdoom RA. He accepted him as his spiritual guide”. On hearing this, he expressed his resentment over his changing behavior. He scolded him and addressed these lines to him, “The knowledge that I am imparting you here is real and ultimate, and there is nothing more powerful full than this. You are spoiling your time, come and rejoin the classes here” But, Dawood Toosi rejected his claim that was based on his narrow thinking. He was so obsessed with Zahiri Uloom that he always understood and explained every action or phenomenon in the light of Alimi Zahir. Dawood Toosi heard him patiently and then gave an instant reply. He said, “My dear mentor let me tell you that Sheikh Hamza Mukhdoom has already passed those stages of knowledge much before you that you have acquired but he never passed decrees- Futwas on any person as you are, he dislikes this kind of attitude, even the companion of Prophet Mohammad PBUH and Awliya Allah never endorsed or favored this kind of attitude”. When he heard about the intellectual and spiritual highness of Mukdoom Sahib, he expressed his willingness to meet him personally. The date was fixed. Moulana Shamsu-Din met Sheikh Hamza Makdoom at his Kahanqha. It is noted down in the historical documents that when Shamasu- Din entered the room, he was surprised to see him on the sophisticated floor-covering- Qaleen with soft pillows. The instant thought that came to his mind was related to the seating arrangements available there. The first question that came to his mind was how a person enjoying such worldly facilities can have a spiritual highness as said by his disciple. Sheikh Hamza Makdoom realized his inner reaction through intuition and ordered his disciples- Baba Dawood Khakhi to roll the mating and pillows and entrusted the same to guest- Shamsu- Din. That particular episode astonished Shames Din to the extent that he tendered his apology to Sheikh Hamza Mukhdoom. He realized that there is knowledge that is beyond these textbooks which he should learn. He begged him to illuminate his life with the knowledge. His request was accepted and he took the allegiance on his hand for spiritual guidance. In this way, he became a follower of the Suharwardi lineage. It is worth mentioning here that Sayed Jamaluddin RA before departing from Kashmir gave the Shaikh Hamza Mukdoom the authority to enroll disciples into the Suharwardi order. Mukhdoom Sahib poured spiritual blessings upon him. He refined his character and his inner and outward conditions were alleviated. He conquered the various spiritual stages under his great guidance. His dedication, sincerity, patience, and his supererogatory prayer (Ziker Azkar) brought him very close to Mukhdoom Sahib. He became his adorable disciple. His good manners, morality, thought, and knowledge became the indicators of his personality. His greatest contribution was that he instructed the people to forsake superstitions and Un-Islamic activities through his speech and actions. The blend of Zahir and Batini Uloom reshaped his personality. Dawood Toosi felt proud to be his student.
Mirza Haider- the ruler of Kashmir had very high regard for him. He often called him for debate and discussion on various religious matters and every time, the opponents bowed their heads before him. He demonstrated each matter under the light of the Quran and Hadees. There was political uncertainty. The sudden death of Mirza Haider left him perturbed so much that he decided to move to Makah Sharief, and performed the Haj. “He took his last breath in Madina and was buried in the Mazaar Al- Baqi. Almost all the prominent historians like M. Azam Dedmari, Peer Hassan Shah Khouhami, etc. mentioned his brief biography in their historical accounts” He remains the least known figure because there is no shrine after his name in the valley. As we mentioned that his grave is in Madina. Another reason is that there is a brief mention of his life story in the history books which are available in Persian and Urdu writings. It is a privilege for me to introduce such a great personality to my younger generation. Special thanks to Nisar Ahamd Bhat Tulmula Ganderbal for his guidance and support.
The author is a teacher and columnist , can be reached at email@example.com