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Mirza Mazhar Jane Janaa
--: Biography of Mirza Mazhar Jane Janaa :--


Mirza Mazhar Jan-i Janan also known by his laqab Shamsuddin Habibullah (1699-1781), was a renowned Naqshbandi Sufi poet of Dehli, distinguished as one the "four pillars of Urdu poetry." He was also known to his contemporaries as the sunnitrash, "Sunnicizer", for his absolute, unflinching commitment to and imitation of the Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad.

He established the Naqshbandi suborder Mazhariyya Shamsiyya.

The date of birth is variously given as 1111 or 1113 A.H, and it took place in Kala Bagh, Malwa. Shaikh Muhammad Tahir Bakhshi notes his date of birth as 11th Ramadan 1111 AH.[3] His father Mirza Jan was employed in the army of the mighty Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb. Following a custom according to which the Emperor had the right to name the sons of his officers, Aurangzeb is reported to have said:

In his prime, Mazhar was advised to write poetry in Urdu rather than Persian as the days of the latter language were said to be numbered in India. Besides authoring poetry and polemics, Mazhar also wrote a large number of letters relating to Sufi thought and practice.

Among his notable ideas is his acceptance of the Divine-origin of the vedas, which he claimed were revealed by God at the beginning of creation, and his acceptance of the Hindus as the people of the book. In Mazhar's view, Krishna and Rama Chandra were both prophets, who preached the oneness of God. Their religion was one that pleased God, but was later abrogated by the arrival of Islam.

Among his 'disciples' or Muridin was the great Hanafi scholar, Qadi Thanaullah Panipati, who wrote a famous Tafsir of the Qur'an by the name Tafsir-i Mazhari, which he named after his teacher. Also in his spiritual lineage (silsila) came the great Hanafi jurist Imam Ibn 'Abidin and the Qur'an exegete Allama Alusi.

His Naqshbandi lineage came to be known as Mazhariyya Shamsiyya. Mazhar apparently authorized more disciples than any of his predecessors. He regularly corresponded with his deputies, and his letters form much of the basis of our knowledge about his life and ideas.

He was succeeded by his khalifa (deputy) Hazrat Abdullah alias Shah Ghulam Ali Dahlavi, who is considered Mujaddid of the 13th Islamic century by most Naqshbandi followers today. His tariqah spread to whole India and Middle East. He is also praised by Sir Syed Ahmed Khan, who in childhood was a disciple of him.

Mirza Mazhar was shot and seriously injured on the 7th of Muharram, of the year 1195 AH/1780 CE. The author of Ab-i ?ayat writes:

"The cause of this murder was widely rumored in Delhi among high and low: that according to custom, on the seventh day [of Mu?arram], the standards were carried aloft [in procession]. Mirza Mazhar sat by the side of the road in the upper veranda of his house, with some of his special disciples. Just as ordinary barbarous people do, his [Sunni] group and the [Shia] procession group may perhaps have hurled some insults and abuse, and some barbarous person was offended. Among them was one stony-hearted person named Faulad [=steel] ?han, who was extremely barbarous. He did this evil deed. But ?akim Qudratullah ?han 'Qasim', in his anthology, says that in his poetry Mirza Sahib used to compose a number of verses in praise of Hazrat ?Ali, and some Sunni took this amiss and did this evil deed.

It should be noted that the author of Ab-i ?ayat, a determined Shia, has been suspected of indulging in partisan religious bias. Professor Frances Pritchett has noted that the latter account of the death of Mirza Mazhar in Ab-i ?ayat is a deliberate distortion. Professor Friedmann, as well as Annemari Schimmel and Itzchad Weismann, have all noted that Mirza Mazhar was killed by a Shiite zealot.

Most of his Urdu biographers have also written that he was killed by a gunshot by a Shiite zealot on 7th Muharram, and he died on 10th Muharram 1195 AH.

Mirza Mazhar belonged to the Mujaddidi order of Sufism, which is the main branch of Naqshbandi Sufi tariqah. His spiritual lineage goes to Prophet Muhammad, through Shaikh Ahmad Sirhindi, the Mujaddid of eleventh Hijri century. The complete lineage is as under

Sayyadna Muhammad d.11AH, buried Madinah SA (570/571 - 632 CE) 
1. Sayyadna Abu Bakr Siddiq, radiya-l-Lahu`anh d.13AH, buried Madinah, SA 
2. Sayyadna Salman al-Farsi, radiya-l-Lahu`anh d.35AH buried Madaa'in, SA 
3. Imam Qasim ibn Muhammad ibn Abu Bakr d.107AH buried Madinah SA. 
4. Imam Jafar Sadiq, alayhi-s-salam (after which moves to Iran) d 148AH buried Madinah SA. 
5. Shaikh Bayazid Bastami, radiya-l-Lahu canh d 261AH buried Bistaam, Iraq (804 - 874 CE). 
6. Shaikh Abul Hassan Kharqani, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah d 425AH buried Kharqaan, Iran. 
7. Shaikh Abul Qasim Gurgani, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah d.450AH buried Gurgan, Iran. 
8. Shaikh Abu Ali Farmadi, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah (after which moves to Turkmenistan) d 477AH buried Tous, Khorasan, Iran. 
9. Khwaja Abu Yaqub Yusuf Hamadani, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah d 535AH buried Maru, Khorosan, Iran. 
10. Khwaja Abdul Khaliq Ghujdawani, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah d 575AH buried Ghajdawan, Bukhara, Uzbekistan. 
11. Khwaja Arif Reogari, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah d 616AH buried Reogar, Bukhara, Uzbekistan. 
12. Khwaja Mahmood Anjir-Faghnawi, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah d 715AH buried Waabakni, Mawralnahar. 
13. Shaikh Azizan Ali Ramitani, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah d 715AH buried Khwaarizm, Bukhara, Uzbekistan. 
14. Shaikh Muhammad Baba Samasi, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah d 755AH buried Samaas, Bukhara, Uzbekistan. 
15. Shaikh Sayyid Amir Kulal, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah d 772AH buried Saukhaar, Bukhara, Uzbekistan. 
16. Shaikh Muhammad Baha'uddin Naqshband, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah d 791AH buried Qasr-e-Aarifan, Bukhara, Uzbekistan (1318-1389 CE). 
17. Shaikh Ala'uddin Attar Bukhari, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah buried Jafaaniyan, Mawranahar, Uzbekistan. 
18. Shaikh Yaqub Charkhi, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah d 851AH buried Charkh, Bukhara, Uzbekistan. 
19. Shaikh Ubaidullah Ahrar, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah d 895AH buried Samarkand, Uzbekistan. 
20. Shaikh Muhammad Zahid Wakhshi, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah d 936AH buried Wakhsh, Malk Hasaar 
21. Shaikh Durwesh Muhammad, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah d 970AH buried Samarkand, Uzbekistan. 
22. Shaikh Muhammad Amkanaki, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah (after which moves to India) d 1008AH buried Akang, Bukhara, Uzbekistan. 
23. Shaikh Muhammad Baqi Billah Berang, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah d 1012AH buried Delhi, India. 
24. Shaikh Ahmad Faruqi Sirhindi, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah d 1034AH buried Sarhand, India (1564-1624 CE) 
25. Muhammad Masum Sirhindi, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah d 1079AH buried Sarhand, India. 
26. Muhammad Saifuddin Faruqi Mujaddidi, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah d 1096AH buried Sarhand, India 
27. Hafiz Muhammad Mohsin, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah 
28. Sayyid Nur Muhammad Badayuni, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah, d.1135AH 
29. Mirza Mazhar Jan-e-Janaan, qaddasa-l-Lahu sirrah, d.1195AH 

In Maqamat Mazhari, his foremost Khalifa and successor Shah Ghulam Ali Dahlwai writes short biographies of many of his Khulafa (deputies). Here only those names are mentioned: 
Shaykh Abdullah alias Shah Ghulam Ali Dahlawi (author of the book) 
1. Shaykh Sayyad Mir Musalman, a Sayyad (descendant of Prophet Muhammad), died during the life of his shaykh 
2. Qadi Thanaullah Panipati, author of Tafsir Mazhari and other notable Islamic books, descendant of Usman the third caliph of Islam 
3. Mawlana Fadalullah, elder brother of Qadi Thanaullah Panipati 
4. Mawlana Ahmadullah, eldest son of Qadi Thanaullah Panipati, famous for his braveness and fighting skills 
5. Wife of Qadi Thanaullah Panipati 
6. Shaykh Muhammad Murad, a trader, spent 35 years in the company of his shaykh 
7. Shaykh Abdur-Rahman 
8. Mir Aleemullah Gangohi 
9. Shaykh Muradullah alias Ghulam Kaki 
10. Shaykh Muhammad Ehsan 
11. Shaykh Ghulam Hasan 
12. Shaykh Muhammad Muneer 
13. Khwaja Ibadullah 
14. Mawlana Qalandar Bakhsh 
15. Mir Naeemullah 
16. Mawlana Thanaullah Sanbhali 
17. Mir Abdul-Baqi 
18. Khalifa Muhammad Jameel 
19. Hazrat Shah Bheek 
20. Mawlana Abdul-Haqq 
21. Shah Muhammad Salim 
22. Shah Rahmatullah 
23. Muhammad Shah 
24. Mir Mubeen Khan 
25. Mir Muhammad Mueen Khan, brother of Mir Mubeen Khan 
26. Mir Ali Asghar alias Mir Makhoo 
27. Muhammad Hasan Arab 
28. Muhammad Qa'im Kashmiri 
29. Hafiz Muhammad 
30. Mawlana Qutbuddin 
31. Mawlana Ghulam Yahya 
32. Mawlana Sayyad Ghulam Muhiuddin Jilani 
33. Mawlana Naeemullah Bahra'ichi 
34. Mawlana Kaleemullah Bangali 
35. Sayyad Mir Ruhul-Amin 
36. Shah Muhammad Shafi 
37. Muhammad Wasil 
38. Muhammad Hussain 
39. Shaykh Ghulam Hussain Thaanisari 
40. Mawlana Abdul Kareem 
41. Mawlana Abdul Hakeem 
42. Nawab Irshad Khan 
43. Ghulam Mustafa Khan, student of Shah Waliullah Muhaddith Dahlawi 
44. Noor Muhammad Qandhari 
45. Mulla Naseem 
46. Mulla Abdur Razzaq 
47. Mulla Jaleel 
48. Mulla Abdullah 
49. Mulla Taimoor 


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