Hazrat Shah Bahauddin Naqshband

Hazrat Shah Naqshband (Q) was born on Muharram 4, 718 AH., or February 25, 1319 A.D., in village of Qasr Arifan near Bukhara. He bore miraculous powers since his birth.

He was the child about whom Hazrat Muhammad Baba Samasi used to say whenever he passed by the village of Qasr Arifan, “I am smelling from this place the scent of a Spiritual personality who is going to appear and after whose name this entire order will be known.

Hazrat Shah Naqshband (Q) was 18 years of age when he was sent by his grandfather to Samas to serve Hazrat Muhammad Baba Samasi (Q). After the demise of Hazrat Muhammad Baba Samasi (Q), he returned back to Bukhara and married there. He lived in Qasr Arifan, near to Syed Amir Kulal (Q). Syed Amir Kulal (Q) was already made responsible for the training and completion of Hazrat Shah Naqshband (Q) by Hazrat Muhammad Baba Samasi (Q), Hazrat Shah Naqshband (Q) remained in his service, and he took extra care for the spiritual raising of chosen pupil of his spiritual guide.

He was trained to be the Master of the Naqshbandia order by his Syed Amir Kulal (Q). He was also Uwaysi as he also had the spiritual blessings of Hazrat Abdul Khaliq Ghajdwani (Q), who preceded him by 200 years.

From Hazrat Mehmood Faghnawi (Q) to Syed Amir Kulal (Q) loud recitation was in practice. However, Shah Bahauddin Naqshband (Q) preferred only the silent recitation, even though he had subordinated to Syed Amir Kulal. When they used to begin loud recitation, he used to leave and go to his room to do silent recitation. This made the disciples of Syed Amir Kulal (Q) somewhat upset. But Syed Amir Kulal (Q) himself refuted the doubts of his pupils and later made him his successor to the throne of Naqshbandia Order.

After assuming the responsibilities of guiding the people on the path of Allah, Shah Bahauddin Naqshband (Q) started his own way of imparting training. He had always preferred the silent recitation and introduced this practice among his followers. He said: “I preferred silent (recitation) because it is stronger and more advisable.” He further said that Allah Exalted has bestowed on me The Naqshbandia order in which our start point is the point where other orders ends.

He also used to write the word ‘Allah’ on the wall and asked his illiterate disciples to move their finger on the word and try to concentrate on the divinity associated with it. In this way he made people used to, to meditation. This is the reason that since the Hazrat Shah Naqshband (Q), this order was given name of Naqshbandia. It was hitherto called Taifuria. He said: “Our Way is very rare and very precious. It is the way of keeping firm and steadfast (Urwatil-Wuthqa) in the footsteps of the Prophet (PBUH) and of his companions. They brought me to this Way from the door of Favors, because at its beginning and at its end, I witnessed nothing but the Favors of Allah. In this Way great doors of Heavenly Knowledge will be opened to the seeker who follows in the footsteps of the Prophet (PBUH).”

He used to say that there were three ways to reach the destination

  1. Muraqiba (meditation) when the seeker forgets the created and remembers only the Creator;
  2. Mushahida (vision) where inspirations from the Unseen come to the heart of the seeker accompanied by two states: contraction and expansion. In the condition of contraction, the vision is of Majesty, and in the state of expansion the vision is of Beauty.
  3. Muhasiba (reckoning) where the seeker assesses time that has passed whether that had been passed in entire Presence of God or in thorough presence with the world.

He added three Principles to Shaikh Abdul Khaliq’s Ghajdwani (Q) Eight tenets:

  1. Wuquf Zamani (Awareness of Time): It means to watch one’s composure and check one’s tendency to heedlessness;
  2. Wuquf Adadi (Awareness of Numbers): means that the seeker who is reciting must observe the exact number of repetitions entailing the silent recitation of the heart; and
  3. Wuquf Qalbi (Awareness of heart): means to direct the heart of the seeker towards the Divine Presence, where he will not see other than his Beloved One.

Khwaja Naqshband (Q) led a simple and monastic life. He used to say that whatever I attained, in Faqr (renouncement of the world). He always remained careful that whatever food or fibre reaches to his hands was pure and permitted according to Sharia.

He was contemporary to Amir Taimur. In fact both were taught by the same teacher. Therefore, Khwaja Naqshband (Q) always respected Taimur out of courtesy to a classmate. Once Taimur came to him and Khwaja Naqshband (Q) asked him to be seated besides him on a carpet that was of black colour. During the course of discussion, the topic of Taimur’s plundering arose. Taimur read a verse of Hafiz (means): “If the fate of anyone is like a carpet woven by black thread, it would not turn white if washed by the water of Zam Zam or the Kauthar.” Khwaja Naqshband at once replied: “Well! It turns white by the spiritual power of a pious man,” and fondled his hands on the black carpet beneath them. Every one witnessed that the black carpet turned white. After that meeting Taimur abandoned the practice of pillage and plunder.

During his last days, he mostly stayed confined to his chamber. A large number of people made pilgrimage to see him, and he gave them advises they needed.
On the last day of his sublime existence in this mortal world, he ordered his visitors to recite Surah Ya Sin when they finished he raised his hands and said Statement of Faith (Kalma-Tayyaba) and immediately surrendered to the will of Allah and took eternal sojourn in Heaven.

Hazrat Shah Bahauddin Naqshband (Q) passed away on Monday, Rabi-al–Awwal 3, 791 AH., March 2, 1389 A.D. He was laid to rest in his garden as he had bequeathed. The rulers of Bukhara took care of his school and mosque and expanded them.

Hazrat Shah Naqshband (Q) left behind many deputies, the most honorable among them were Hazrat Yaqoob Ibn Uthman Charkhi (Q) Hazrat Shaikh Muhammad bin Muhammad Alauddin Khwarzami Bukhari Attar and Shaikh Muhammad bin Muhammad bin Mehmood Hafizi, known as Muhammad Parsa, the author of Risala Qudsiyya. It is to the first who succeeded Shah Naqshband to the seat of Naqshbandia Order.