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Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ)

Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) was one of the most influential and pivotal figures in the Chishtiah Silsila.


Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) was one of the most influential and pivotal figures in the Chishtiah Silsila and is widely renowned for his intensely rigorous mujahidah in Allah's path. After the Wisal of Hazrat Khuwaja Qutub Uddin Bakhtiyar Kaki Ooshi Chishti (رضی اللہ) only a year after the demise of Hazrat Khuwaja Ghareeb Nawaz Moin Uddin Chishti (رضی اللہ) the bulk of the work begun by the latter fell upon his shoulders. It was he who, in his 37 years as head of the silsila, ensured the propagation of Islam throughout India and the lands beyond.

Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) was born in Khatwaal, in the district of Multan (present day “Southeast Pakistan”). His grandfather Hazrat Qazi Shoaib (رضی اللہ) a jurist from the house of Farrukh Shah 'The Just' (whose lineage is traced through Hazrat Khuwaja Sultan Ibrahim Bin Adham (رضی اللہ) to Hazrat Syedina Umar al-Farooque (رضی اللہ) had left his native Kabul after it was swallowed up by the Ghaznavi Empire. Miraculous events surrounded Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) birth. He was born on the 29th Shabaan in 569 AH, the son of a pious Aalim and a waliah (female saint).

As the night was cloudy, people did not know whether Ramadan had begun or not. But a Dervaish told them that a wali had been born who would be the Qutb (spiritual monarch) of his time, and that they must look to the child for their answer. Sure enough, the one day old Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) didn’t even Fed after sehri, indicating to all that Ramadan had in fact begun.

Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) was a direct descendent of Hazrat Syedina Umar al-Farooq (رضی اللہ). After completing his education in Kahtwal, for higher studies Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) proceeded to the city of Multan, which was then an important center of Islamic learning. In Multan, Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) lodged at a mosque, where he busied himself with books. One day as he was reading Hazrat Khuwaja Qutub Uddin Bakhtiyar Kaki Ooshi Chishti (رضی اللہ) appeared in the mosque. Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) recognized at once that this was no ordinary man. As Hazrat Khuwaja Qutub Uddin Bakhtiyar Kaki Ooshi Chishti (رضی اللہ) prayed his namaz, Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) meekly seated himself nearby. When the Hazrat Khuwaja Qutub Uddin Bakhtiyar Kaki Ooshi Chishti (رضی اللہ) was finished, he addressed him: Masood, “What are you reading?”

Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) answered, “I am reading Nafi” (A legal text, the title of which means 'useful').

Hazrat Khuwaja Qutub Uddin Bakhtiyar Kaki Ooshi Chishti (رضی اللہ)! “Do you find it useful?”

Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) confessed, "What is useful to me is the alchemy of your glance." Overcome with emotion, he kissed Hazrat Khuwaja Qutub Uddin Bakhtiyar Kaki Ooshi Chishti’s (رضی اللہ) feet.

After his education finished, Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) was ordered by his Murshid to begin a tour of all the Islamic countries in order to meet the leading mystics of his time. On this journey, he came into contact with many great sufi. Whilst in Madinah performing Hajj, he went to Bughdad. he was welcomed by the son of Huzoor Ghous Pak (رضی اللہ) and given khilafah in the Qadria silsilah, as well as receiving from him various sacred relics such as a turban and wooden food bowl of Huzoor Nabi Kareem (ﷺ).

Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) was spiritually directed by the Huzoor Nabi Kareem (ﷺ). After eighteen years of traveling, he returned to Delhi to Hazrat Khuwaja Qutub Uddin Bakhtiyar Kaki Ooshi Chishti (رضی اللہ) and was given khilafah by Hazrat Khuwaja Ghareeb Nawaz Moin Uddin Chishti (رضی اللہ) in the presence of many great sufi.

Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) was then ordered to go to Hansi and begin preaching Islam there. But before he had even settled down, he received the sad news of Hazrat Khuwaja Qutub Uddin Bakhtiyar Kaki Ooshi Chishti's (رضی اللہ) wisaal and rushed back to Delhi arriving, as Hazrat Khuwaja Qutub Uddin Bakhtiyar Kaki Ooshi Chishti (رضی اللہ) had prophesied, three days after his death. There he was given the khilafa-e-azam Successor of Hazrat Khuwaja Qutub Uddin Bakhtiyar Kaki Ooshi Chishti (رضی اللہ) and decided, because of the political upheavals occurring in Dehli, to move the Chishtiah headquarters to Ajodhan.

The city renamed Pak-Patan in honour of him. Ajodhan was a small, isolated town surrounded by jungles and wild animals but with the spiritual blessings of Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ), it soon became a bustling centre of Islam. Scholars and Sufi flocked from all over India and the lands around to study under the great Wali Ullah, who built up a veritable university of Islamic education along with a great khanqah. From Ajodhan would leave many missionaries who spread out over the whole of India to propagate Islam and Sufism. His great popularity aroused the ire and jealousy of Ajodhan's qazi, who out of his envy wrote a letter to the leading ulma of the time complaining about Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) love of Mehfil-E-Samaa. But the ulma rebuffed him, saying, Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) is the Qutb of our time, and the highest authority on Shariah among all of us. If he says Sama is permissible, then it is. The above incident bears ample testimony to the universal awe in which Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) was held. His mujahedas were of such rigor that few in the history of sufism have managed to surpass them. Once he was ordered by Hazrat Khuwaja Qutub Uddin Bakhtiyar Kaki Ooshi Chishti (رضی اللہ) to perform forty night seclusion whilst suspended upside down in a well, being pulled up only for salah and to perform more ordinary devotions. As an initiate Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) followed the example of his murshid in fasting continuously and practicing the most rigorous spiritual disciplines undertaking even the daunting chilla ('inverted retreat'); forty nights of zikar ('remembrance,' invocation) while suspended upside-down in a well.

One day when Hazrat Khuwaja Ghareeb Nawaz Moin Uddin Hasan Chishti (رضی اللہ), Hazrat Khuwaja Qutub Uddin Bakhtiyar Kaki Ooshi Chishti (رضی اللہ) and Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) were sitting together.

Hazrat Khuwaja Ghareeb Nawaz Moin Uddin Hasan Chishti (رضی اللہ) said to Hazrat Khuwaja Qutub Uddin Bakhtiyar Kaki Ooshi Chishti (رضی اللہ): “How long will you scorch this youth with spiritual exertions? Show him some kindness.”

Hazrat Khuwaja Qutub Uddin Bakhtiyar Kaki Ooshi Chishti (رضی اللہ) assented and both Shaikhs gave togethered Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) the blessing of a glance of kindness and forbearance were legendary.

Once a soldier came with the intention of killing him, but the great saint merely told him, “Dear brother, I have done you no harm. Why would you kill a dervish and earn the curse of God?” When the man relented, he immediately embraced and forgave him. He was the most humble of men, despite all the vast knowledge he had at his disposal, he would refrain from even correcting those who came to him arrogantly for fear of puncturing their egos. Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) enjoined the strict adherence to Shari'ah and the necessity of renouncing the pleasures of the world as pre-requisites for embarking on the journey towards Allah (جل جلاله). His love for the Huzoor Nabi Kareem (ﷺ) was so intense that he would sometimes break down and cry whilst lecturing on him, realising his own worthlessness as compared to that of our beloved Huzoor Nabi Kareem (ﷺ). As with all the great Sufis, the object of his life was devotion to Allah and service of mankind.

After completing his training and receiving the honor of khilafat, Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) his master's permission to withdraw to the cantonment town of Hansi, where he hoped to maintain a low profile. With tears in his eyes, Hazrat Khuwaja Qutub Uddin said, “Mawlana Farid Uddin, I know you will go. Go, It is destined that you will not be present at the time of my death.” Bidding those in attendance to recite Surah al-Fatiha and Surah al-Ikhlas, he conferred on him his prayer carpet and staff and uttered his final testament, “My place is yours.” In Hansi one night Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) saw his master in a dream, beckoning him. In the morning he left for Delhi. On the road he learnt that Hazrat Khuwaja Qutub Uddin Bakhtiyar Kaki Ooshi Chishti (رضی اللہ) got wisaal that very night. On his arrival in Delhi Hazrat Khuwaja Qazi Amid Uddin Nagwari (رضی اللہ) presented him with the remaining mystical insignia (tabarrukat) of Hazrat Khuwaja Qutub Uddin Bakhtiyar Kaki Ooshi Chishti (رضی اللہ) robe, turban, and pair of wooden sandals and Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) took his seat in his master's house.

Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) left 14 khulafah behind him, where Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti Chishti (رضی اللہ), founder of the NIZAMIA Order and Hazrat Khuwaja Sabir Pak Kaliyar Chishti (رضی اللہ), the founder of the SABRIA order.

Hazrat Khuwaja Nizam Uddin Awliya Mehboob-E-Ilahi Chishti (رضی اللہ) was his principal khilafa (Successor), and was located in Dehli.

Under him, the Chishtia silsila achieved the zenith of its glory and influence. He collected the gathered teachings of his master as Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) had collected those of his murshid Hazrat Khuwaja Qutub Uddin Bakhtiyar Kaki Ooshi Chishti (رضی اللہ) like his predecessors, Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) wrote no books, but a number of his sayings were recorded by his disciples and incorporated in Siyar al-awliya'. These are among them: God feels shame in denying the request of a worshipper whose hands are raised in supplication.

• One should not be dissuaded from one's work by the hotness or coldness of others.

• If you have something, there is no reason to be sad. If not, there is still no reason to be sad.

• For a 'True Man', a day of contentment is like the night of the Prophet's Ascension (Miraj).

• One should not be dissuaded from one's work by the hotness or coldness of others.

• The Sufi is one who elucidates everything and is roiled by nothing.

• When a dervish dons new clothes it should be known that he dons his shroud.

• The prophets are alive even in their graves.

• A single experience of divine attraction (jazba) is better than the combined piety of both worlds.

• We are content with our portion: for us, knowledge; for the ignorant, wealth.

• Disaster comes with contrivance; peace comes with submission to the Divine will.

• A faqir ('poor one') among the 'ulma' (religious scholars) is like the full moon among the stars.

Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) was born in a state of devotion, so too he got wisaal in that state. Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) would often lie in prayerful prostration (sijda) for hours on end, reciting, 'I die for you; I live for you.' Having reached his ninety-third year, on the evening of 5th Muharram 664/1265 the Shaikh breathed his last. As he expired he uttered, 'Ya Haiyo, Ya Qayyum' (O Living, O Eternal).

Hazrat Khuwaja Baba Fareed Uddin Masood Shakar Ganj Chishti (رضی اللہ) tomb in Pak Pattan, originally built with unbaked bricks pried from his hut, today a major pilgrimage center, attracting tens of thousands of devotees each year.

His last words were, 'Ya Haiyo ya Qayyum.' Upon his Wisaal, a divine voice was heard by those gathered to say,

'FRIEND HAS MERGED INTO THE UNITY OF FRIEND.'