Life History of Syed Abdul Rehman Jilani 

GENEALOGICAL CHAIN

Sayyid Abdul Rehman Jilani Dehlvi is the descendant of Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani. Therefore his lineage reaches Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani in the following order:

Sayyid Abdul Rehman Jilani Dehlvi son of Sayyid Abdul Qadir son of Sharfuddin son of Sayed Ahmed son of Alauddin Sani son of Sayyid Shahabuddin Sani son of Sharfuddin Qasim son of Mohiyuddin Yahya son of Badaruddin Husayn son of Alauddin son of Shamsuddin son of Saifuddin Yahya son of Zaheeruddin son of Abi Nasr son of Abu Saleh Nasr son of Shaikh Sayyid Abdul Razzaq Jilani son of Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani.

A keen and research based reader can confirm and match this lineage record of Sayyid Abdullah Shah given in his section. To point out, Sayyid Abdullah Shah was the great grandson of Sayyid Abdul Rehman Jilani. As well as the spiritual leader of Sarwari Qadri order after Sultan-ul-Arifeen Sultan Bahoo.

 

BIRTH

Sayyid Abdul Rehman Jilani was born in 1024 H (1615 AD) in Hama, Syria. Now that his father Sayyid Abdul Qadir was a Dervish and a perfect Saint. Therefore he got his early education from his father. At the age of thirty five, he came to Baghdad from Hama.  There he stayed in seclusion for three years at the shrine of his great ancestor Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani. Then Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani esoterically ordered him to go to India and meet Shaikh Sayyid Abdul Jaleel. At that time, he was thirty eight years of age. On Tuesday, 13th Dhul al-Qadah, 1062 H (15th October 1652 AD), he reached India via Iran and Afghanistan in the reign of Shah Jahan.

He met Sayyid Abdul Jaleel who lived near the river Indus or Burhanpur or Adilpur. Further he took oath of allegiance upon his hands on Monday, 10th Dhul al-Hijjah, 1062 H (10th November, 1652 AD). Then at his orders, he went to Delhi on Wednesday, 9th Safar, 1063 H (8th January, 1653 AD). Here, he bought some land and built his house and a khanqah where his shrine is situated now. He also built rooms for residence of disciples on the land around the khanqah.  As well as a mosque. The name of the mosque is Shah Abdul Rehman Mosque. Present Sadar station in old Delhi and quarters of Muslim Waqf Board are built on his property.

 

THRONE OF DIVINE GUIDANCE AND PERSUASION

Sayyid Abdul Rehman Jilani spent his life in anonymity. As he never appreciated fame and never went to the royal court or met the rulers and officials. Moreover he was the Fakir of Qadri order and had Divine powers. Given that he blessed a large number of people in Delhi and its vicinity with his beneficence. Hence, lacs of people became his disciples. He was a Qaim Maqam Fakir i.e. the Fakir who benefits people while staying at one place. Therefore there is not any evidence that he ever went out of Delhi once he settled there.

There is also a tradition that Sayyid Abdul Rehman Jilani came to India for two purposes. First to hand over the Qadri order to Sultan-ul-Arifeen Sultan Bahoo physically. As this order has to sustain till the doomsday. Moreover Sultan Bahoo was the one to spread and elevate it in the world.

Second to spiritually support and help Aurangzeb to ascend the throne. So to enliven the Mohammadan sharia. In essence it was the spiritual power of Sayyid Abdul Rehman Jilani which he exercised behind the victories of Aurangzeb. All in all it exterminated heretical practices prevailing in that era. Abdul Rehman Jilani transferred the responsibility to Sultan Bahoo and passed away. Further Sultan Bahoo’s spiritual assistance made it possible for Aurangzeb to establish the greatest Mughal Empire and vivify the Mohammadan sharia.

BEAUTY AND ELEGANCE

Sayyid Abdul Rehman Jilani had wheatish complexion and medium height. Moreover his eyes were very beautiful and his face was so much divinely luminous.  Such as the disciples could not fix gaze at his sacred countenance.

FAMILY

On Monday, 6th Jumada ath-thani, 1065 H (12th April, 1655 AD) Sayyid Abdul Rehman Jilani married a Sayyid woman of Jilani descent, Sayyida Zahida in Delhi. In 1070 H (1660 AD) he had his first son Sayyid Taj-ul-Arifeen who died of diarrhea in 1075 H (1665 AD). In 1082 H (1671 AD) his second son Sayyid Abdul Aziz was born. Sayyid Abdul Rehman Jilani died in 1088 H. His wife died ten years later in 1098 H (1687 AD).

In short his son Sayyid Abdul Aziz migrated to Madina at a young age and settled there. Yet his grandson Sayyid Abdullah Shah came back from Madina to India. There he got the Divine Trust of Faqr from Sultan-ul-Arifeen Sultan Bahoo and settled in Ahmedpur East, district Bahawalpur (now in Pakistan). Sayyid Abdullah Shah’s shrine is in Ahmadpur East and people visit it for beneficence. His biography has a section of its own.

CHAIN OF FAQR

The chain of Faqr reaches Sayyid Abdul Rehman Jilani Dehlvi from Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani in the following order:

Sayyid Abdul Rehman Jilani was the disciple of Sayyid Abdul Jaleel who was the disciple of Sayyid Abdul Baqqa disciple of Sayyid Abdul Sattar disciple of Sayyid Abdul Fattah disciple of Sayyid Najamuddin of Burhanpur disciple of Sayyid Mohammad Sadiq Yahya Jilani disciple of Sayyid Abdul Jabbar bin Abu Saleh Nasr disciple of Shaikh Sayyid Abdul Razzaq Jilani disciple of Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani.

SPIRITUAL SUCCESSORS

Sultan-ul-Arifeen Sultan Bahoo was the superior spiritual successor (al-khalifah al-akbar ) of Sayyid Abdul Rehman Jilani. The junior successors (al-khalifah al-asghar ) included Shah Habibullah Qadri and Sayyid Mohammad Siddiq who was also the first caretaker of his shrine.

DEATH

Sayyid Abdul Rehman Jilani Dehlvi died in the reign of emperor Aurangzeb on Friday night, the 21st of Ramadan 1088 H (16th November 1677 AD).

DEATH ANNIVERSARY

Disciples would celebrate Sayyid Abdul Rehman Jilani’s death anniversary on 21stRamadan with great zeal and zest for a long period. Till now, devotees celebrate it on 21stRamadan.

SHRINE

Sayyid Abdul Rehman Jilani’s grave is in his apartment. His junior spiritual successor Sayyid Mohammad Siddiq was the first caretaker of his shrine. Sayyid Mohammad Siddiq died childless in the reign of Aurangzeb. Neither his date of death is in any book nor information of his grave. During the British rule, a road, a railway track and the Sadar railway station were under construction. Now the railway track was slightly sidetracked. As to keep the shrine of Sayyid Abdul Rehman shrine safe. A compound was made around the shrine to keep it separate from the railway system.

ENCROACHMENT ON SHRINE

The Hindus who migrated to India from Pakistan in 1947 after the division of the sub-continent occupied the vast land adjacent to the shrine of Sayyid Abdul Rehman Jilani by conspiring with the members of Muslim Waqf Board, just as they had done with the other shrines and Muslim khanqahs. Now his shrine is just a small room and Shah Abdul Rehman Mosque is present nearby. All the surrounding land which was actually the property of Sayyid Abdul Rehman and was a part of his shrine is now in the custody of illegal occupants. Let us discuss with reference to Indian books that how these people encroached the shrines and other properties left by Muslims.

IN BOOK MAZARAAT-E-DEHLI

Fareeduddin Shah Buland from UP India, writes in Rehnuma-e-Mazaraat-e-Dehli on page 7, published from Delhi in 2001.

  • Alas! The partition of India badly affected the holy places and shrines. As a large number of Muslims migrated to Pakistan. Therefore thousands of shrines and endowed properties were illegally occupied and disfigured. Next what happened was that people forgot their actual history. Now even their traces are

BOOK MAZARAAT AULIYA-E-DEHLI

Doctor Mohammad Hafeez-ur-Rehman Siddiquee states in Mazaraat Auliya-e-Dehli, published from Delhi in 2006.

Turmoil of 1947

  • Now during the turmoil of 1947, most of the Muslims migrated to Pakistan. On the whole the refugees who migrated from Pakistan occupied Delhi. Due to which the holy places of Muslims were treated badly. Moreover no one stayed to look after them. For example Immigrants coming from Pakistan occupied the mausoleums of Qadam Sharif, Shah-e-Mardan, Chirag Delhi and the boundary of mausoleum of Qutbuddin Bakhtiar Kaki. While the government forcefully took the main shrine back but the boundary remained occupied by them.

Now Muslims occupied the remaining mausoleums and built their houses there. Once the enclosures of these mausoleums were very vast and other Saints also buried inside them. All these enclosures were encroached by people who built their houses and shops in them.

Examples of present condition of different shrines

For example a shop is still running in the mausoleum of Shaikh Salahuddin which is in Savitri Nagar, Sheikh Sarai. A carpenter is working nearby in the shrine of a Saint of the same family. Moreover, a shop is running in the shrine of Shaikh Suleman Dehlvi which is in the west of Zafar Mahal, in front of the house of Nando fruit-seller. Further the stone of the grave has been removed. Now the nearby two shrines are occupied by a Hindu who is using them as his residence, though the domes of these shrines can still be seen. Similarly, houses are built on all the shrines inside the mausoleum of Nizamuddin Auliya.

Lack of interest by the government

The vast land around these mausoleums and shrines was for the graveyards. Surprisingly, the government occupied all this land. In Delhi, most of the shrines and land for the graveyards are in the custody of Delhi Development Authority (D.D.A). Some Municipal Corporation of Delhi (M.C.D) occupies. Further the remaining are possessed by the capitalists. Also on the land of the graveyard are now Oberoi Hotel and Delhi Public School.

The small shrines on the land devoted for the graveyard around the mausoleum of Sayyid Mehmood Najjar Kelokheri are now being demolished inspite of the fact that this land is under the supervision of Waqf Board*. Alas! Now the shrines and their lands are not safe even under the supervision of Waqf Board.

* Muslim Waqf Board was established for the protection and management of mausoleums, shrines, mosques, graveyards and other properties of Muslims but it became a big mafia itself. The Muslim monuments, shrines, properties devoted for mosques and graveyards were occupied and demolished under its supervision.

Statement of a shrine caretaker

Following quote of Khawaja Sayyid Islamuddin Nizami, the caretaker and imam of Khilji Mosque of shrine of Nizamuddin Auliya is present in the same book:

  • For most citizens of Delhi migrated to Pakistan. Now the immigrants coming from Pakistan occupied the shrines, mausoleums and other Muslim buildings. Afterwards, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad vacated some of these places. Meanwhile, epitaphs of most of the shrines were pulled down. As a result it became difficult to recognize them. Moreover on most of the occupied shrines are houses.

ROLE OF MUSLIM WAQF BOARD OF INDIA

These statements from different books clearly show what happened to the shrines in India after the partition of sub-continent. First Muslim Waqf Board was established for the safeguard of the properties of Muslims who migrated. Second this board comprised of the Muslims of particular religious group. As they had political domination in India due to its alliance with Congress. Moreover that group belonged to the school of thought which is against spirituality and mysticism. Besides they were unaware of the importance of shrines. Hence they lavishly distributed the land of shrines and mausoleums among their relatives. Therefore that particular group ruined the Muslim heritage.

THE PRESENT CONDITION OF SHRINE

There was also a vast land adjacent to the shrine of Sayyid Abdul Rehman Jilani. Encroachers occupied it and they built houses. It is now ‘Muslim Waqf Board Quarters Delhi-6’. Now there is only a small shrine and mosque left. As remaining land is in the custody of those encroachers. Further they are trying to occupy the shrine as well. The shrine is still in the custody of Muslim Waqf Board but there is no one to take care of the shrine. Moreover Sayyid Saleem-uz-Zaman Hashmi writes in his manuscript:

  • I, the humble servant of Sayyids, Saleem-uz-Zaman Hashmi son of Sayyid Ahsanullah Hashmi, live in the vicinity of the shrine of Sayyid Abdul Rehman Jilani. I am the only attendant of this shrine, surrounded by the trouble makers and tribulations in this frail part of my life. After the partition of sub-continent, this area was occupied by the mischief makers and the encroachers. Moreover out of their fear no one visits the shrine. As there is no caretaker of the shrine who could inform the people about the facts therefore the trouble makers are trying hard to capture and demolish the shrine. Further they have occupied a large land of the shrine. Still by the grace of Allah the shrine is safe from them, despite the absence of any supervisor or caretaker of the shrine.

ADDRESS OF THE SHRINE

Old Delhi 6-towards the East of Lahori Gate near Sadar Railway Station, Railway Colony, Muslim Waqf Board Quarters, Delhi-6, India.

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