In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful. Praise be to Allah who turns His servants towards the straight path. Salat and peace be upon our beloved Prophet who is very merciful and friendly towards Muslims, His Ahl-al Bayt, all His companions and those who won’t leave from His strong method up to the doomsday.
The following information you will read is a few valuable pearls and healing oinment chosen from the legends of Sheikh Ahmad Haznavi who is the teacher of followers, guide of advisers, carrier of the Shari’a’s flag, declarator of Naqshbandi tariqa, knowledgeable and perfect scholar. Now, lets look over his these legends together.
Ahmad Haznavi –may almighty Allah be pleased with him- was a person who was devoted to our beloved Prophet (peace be upon him), meticulous in the subject of His words, actions and characteristics, impassioned lover of the Shari’a, studied the details of this Shari’a carefully, performed his religious duties according to its principles and kept away from its Bid’ah (innovation in religion) and permissions.
The most faithful evidence of our sayings is that the scholars around him pledge allegiance to him. Those scholars pledged allegiance to him after careful studies and after they had examined his words thoroughly and looked over them according to the principles of Shari’a. As it is known, all scholars do like this together, before they resign themselves to a great saint. The other evidence of our words about him is that he attracted hearts of every awake Muslims, who gave ear to his words, like something magnetize iron.
Ahmad Haznavi –may Allah be pleased with him- was very meticulous in performing his actions according to the following hadith:
“Actions are but by intention and every man shall have but that which he intended.”
He regarded this hadith as a guide in all his words and actions. Moreover, even he was condemned by thousands of people; he didn’t ignore and never spent even a penny without good intention.
One day his servant Said ordered a poor man to be expelled who had lived in the blessed threshold for three years, because that poor made a mistake causing that order. Meanwhile, after Sheikh had come to talk, that poor man asked him beseechingly for being left in dervish lodge in the presence of followers.
Sheikh avoided fulfilling that poor man’s offer instantly and said to him “let me go that my intention becomes pure.” However, in spite of that answer, he didn’t stop talking. He continued to beg earnestly and insistently and ask for being got back. Nevertheless, Sheikh didn’t pay attention to his offer. But, after a while he called that poor man talked about and said to him “Now, my intention became pure. Don’t go, stay here.” About this subject he told that event personally:
For a moment I hungered for going to Hajj. I made immediately preparations for journey. But after a while, I wanted to examine my nafs. I offered my nafs to give all my money which was reserved for Hajj journey to the poor and give up the idea of going to Hajj. But it refused my offer, and expressed that it wanted more to go to Hajj.
Thereupon, I decided not to go to Hajj for opposing my nafs. Without having good intention, I don’t give anyone even a bun.
Ahmad Haznavi (may Allah be pleased with him) was very attached to his sheikh. While he was mentioning about his sheikh, he was always crying. Moreover, he was very meticulous in keeping his sheikh’s conditions secret.
Therefore, I also formed a habit: If I came across some knowledge in one of tasawwuf books which I listened to it in our Sheikh’s conversation before, I didn’t say to my father “I saw this subject in that book” but said “Sheikh said like that” as if they were our Sheikh’s own words. It is because when our sheikh’s name was mentioned, I saw my father felt great pleasure.
One day, our sheikh’s son Muhammad Masum returned from Hajj and invited us to his house as a guest. After awhile I listened to his talk together with my father, my father went to home so that the host may be disturbed. After my father had gone, we continued to talk a little more. Then, Muhammad Masum wanted me to go home, and so I went to home by obeying his order.
When I arrived at home, I saw my father putting out the light and going to bed. But, when he heard my coming, he asked “who is it?” I replied “I’m Alaaddin”. Then he asked “Why were you so late?” I said that I had listened to talk of our sheikh’s son. So, he said to me “Then come on and turn on the light. Don’t you know that when someone mentions about the great Master, I can’t sleep?”
I went to turn on light obeying my father’s obey. Thereupon, he sat on his bed and I started to tell him what I remembered from the talk of our Master’s son. Moreover, one of his habits was to go to talk of those who had already met his Sheikh and seen him. He used to talk with those very much until he felt that he may have bothered them. Besides, when he came to home, he said to us “Go to that man’s talk. Keep his sayings in your mind. After you come home, tell me what he talks about both our Sheikh and his family.”
Ahmad Haznavi (may Allah be pleased with him) gave great importance to form the habit of his sheikh’s disposition and imitate his actions and behaviors. Moreover, most of the times he put out his right arm from his frock and went to the madrasah or the other places, because his sheikh lost his right arm in Russian wars. Therefore, in last years he used to walk around in that manner. Besides, he often said “praise be to Allah who makes me gain the dispositions of my master and who grants it to me.” When he called one of his followers for ordering him a work, he became shy like a student in madrasah. He did like that for obeying his sheikh.
He memorized all talks of his sheikh. Furthermore, he remembered the places where those talks were made, which town his sheikh was in for guidance in those times, who was the host that treated them with respect and what sort of events happened when he was together with his sheikh. Moreover, while he was telling those, the people who listened to him thought that there was a written text in front of him.
He was so respectful towards the family members of sheikh and considerate to their rights that I fear if I told everything I know about this subject, no one would believe my words. For example, the Master was married with Molla Abdulbaqi’s daughter. But, neither had he wanted her to bring water nor ordered her to prepare his prayer rug. Even, he said to her neither “put on the light” nor “get the soup ready” from his marriage with her to his death.
On the contrary, he served his wife himself. However, his wife didn’t want him to serve her as she was very moral and modest and brought up by a perfect family upbringing. That kindness of her husband bore hard on her. While he was explaining that situation, he was saying “I love Saide not for she is my wife, but for she is granddaughter of our Master. In addition to this, I’m very proud so that almighty Allah granted us a son called Abdulgani by means of our Master’s granddaughter.”
Ahmad Haznavi (may Allah be pleased with him) behaved very meticulously towards tariqa. When there was any neglect in that field, he was bored. Moreover, one day he gathered all scholars and said furiously “You are responsible for every bid’ah (innovation in religion not based Qur’an or sunnah) and neglect occurred in the tariqa. It is because you don’t teach the methods of tariqa sufficiently. Ignorant people are excused.” The reason of his anger was that he saw one of them while opening his eyes at the moment of tawaccuh and saw the other one while sitting turned his back toward his friend.
Ahmad Haznavi (may Allah pleased with him) always read book day and night while he was in his bedroom. He didn’t unhand the book as long as he hadn’t any important work. Furthermore, he usually read book even between the time of iftar and prayer in Ramadan. Most of the books he read were about tasawwuf.
Ahmad Haznavi (may Allah be pleased with him) was expert at fiqh knowledge and details of sahari’a subjects, so that he became the unique competent authority in the subject of fatwa. Because he closely paid attention to the events passed among people, everybody had recourse to him in that subject.
While he was giving fatwa, he didn’t look at the books of fiqh. Moreover, people asked him too many questions and he solved most of the conflicts. When there was an issue among scholars, he always said his opinion. Then all scholars immediately leant towards his opinion and began to support his word. It was because they tested his rightness before by looking at the books.
Ahmad Haznavi (may Allah be pleased with him) was always justified in his opinion. He was never mistaken, so that one who obeyed his view always attained his desire. On the other hand, one who went against his view was disappointed at the end. By advising us to obey his view which he said first, he said like that:
“My custom is that: If there is someone asking me question, first of all I say my opinion. If the opponent says insistently the opposite of my opinion or I think he feels like that, I give up my opinion and support his opinion since I hesitate from his suffering damage by opposing me. I have not miraculous deed. But, my opinions are right except some rare exceptions.”
As a matter of fact, that situation became an absolute truth being reinforced by too many experiments among his followers.
Ahmad Haznavi (may Allah be pleased with him) had extremely strong sense and unusual perception. As soon as he saw someone, he immediately understood his personal conditions and situations. Indeed, sometimes when he was angry, he said to us “my mind cuts even hair.”
Ahmad Haznavi (may Allah be pleased with him) was so sweet-natured that after him only spiritually matured people could reach this position. He was quite tolerant and very compassionate towards the servants of Allah more than their fathers.
Moreover, one day the family of Hajji Culi from Dekuriye tribe asked him for going to Isa Aga, the leader of Meliye tribe in Kendur town, as a reconciler. Dekuriye tribe was being accused of killing Muhammad Salih, the brother of Isa Aga.
By accepting that request, Sheikh went to the home of Isa Aga. Isa Aga accepted his invitation and conciliation with contentment and forgave the suspect murderers. This result was seen as a miraculous deed of Sheikh.
After conciliation, having accepted the invitation of villagers he decided to go Amudah village for making tawaccuh there. Isa Aga couldn’t take the people coming from Amudah village to the tawaccuh, because there was a great crowd in his town. When he arrived at Amudah village, he was welcomed by a great crowd consisting of public, sheikhs, leaders of tribes, civil servants and the people coming from neighbor villages.
There was a great throng and thousands of people came together. Furthermore, although Sheikh arrived at the village, the cars of the people coming for him, the riders and people coming on foot were in between Kendur village and Amudah village and far away from Amudah village approximately two hours.
When Sheikh arrived at the village, first of all he went to the home of Sheikh Beshir Hamidi for comforting him because of one of his relatives’ death. Then, he went to the home of his caliphate Molla Muhammad Latifi. When he went to the mosque after tawaccuh for performing his noon prayer, he stood under the burning sun between Muhammad Latif’s home and the mosque in order to greet public. At the same time cloud of dust coming from ground was rising up their heads.
At that moment, one of Sheikh’s close friends called out to the public: “You made Sheikh tired. Let him go to a shade.” But Sheikh became angry because of those words and said that: “Neither my close friends nor my sons look like me. How do you break people’s heart? However these people dote on me because of their longing, love and sincerity. They desire strongly to draw near to me. I ask Allah for not making my temper as yours.”
After the noon prayer, he performed the second tawaccuh in Amudah. Then, one of his friends invited him to dinner and the car which would take him to the home came alongside the mosque. But as soon as Sheikh went out of the mosque, the public descended upon him again. At that moment one of his friends tried to prevent the public: “Sheikh didn’t eat anything during this time. He was very tired because he was busy with tawaccuh, taubah, visit and prayer since the morning. It is too hot. Let him go to eat something and rest.”
When Sheikh heard those words of his friend, he turned to him and said; “I swear to Allah it’s true that I prefer to stand here during two hours rather than prevent the public.” He got very angry at his friend’s behavior.
By the way the people coming from the provinces so as to want fatwa from Sheikh and ask him for solving the conflicts among themselves were trampling down his prayer rug with mud and dirt of their feet and speaking loudly. When they dashed their rods to the ground because of anger, dust were rising up his head. While they were speaking, they were waving their arms as if their fingers would go into his eyes. Some of them called him as “O! Sufi”, some called him “O! Hajji” and some called him “O! Faqeeh” In this situation, some of his friends ordered them to behave politely towards Sheikh by preventing those provincials’ rowdy behaviors.
However, he got angry at those friends and said to them “Let them do what they want. I have no complaint about them, why are you preventing them?”
One day, he was giving lesson to my brother Muhammad Masum and some of his students. At that moment a man came in and stepped on his prayer rug. His feet were too muddy. Thereupon one of his students shouted at the man loudly for making him stay away from the prayer rug.
When Sheikh saw that situation, he got very angry and said to that student “Why did you break that man’s heart? He was unaware of what he did.” Then he wanted water and washed the prayer rug. Meanwhile, he said “Washing the prayer rug is not so difficult thing that requires breaking the man’s heart.”
When guests came, he stood by them and served them. Until their services finished, he didn’t leave them. By the way he remained standing in intense hot or cold for one hour, two hours or for a longer time. After he had entertained his guest on his own, he turned to his room and ate something. While he was eating his meal, his son or one of his servants came to his door and told him that someone wanted to see him and said something to him. Thereupon, he interrupted his meal at once and went to perform that man’s service.
He always ordered us to inform him, if someone called him and said “If I learn that someone requests me something and you don’t inform me his coming although he doesn’t want to wait, I don’t give my blessing to you.” In those situations he insistently wanted us to inform him there was his guest and even he was asleep, he wanted us to awaken him.
Ahmad Haznavi (may Allah be pleased with him) was extraordinarily tolerant towards his followers. He didn’t reprove them severely because of any accuse made against him. On the other hand he was very meticulous towards the members of his family. He didn’t connive at even their smallest faults. Each of those two different ways of behaving has a different hidden meaning that only those who are sagacious know it.
The reason of the first way of behaving is that: He continued his talk like that so as to tell this reason on his own:
Shah-i Naqshband drove one of his caliphates away, because that caliphate was offended by one of words of Sheikh. Sheikh had said to him “there is no defect of this meal.” The event happened like that: The caliphate used to eat dessert after every meal. One day Shah-i Naqshband invited him to dinner and although he knew the habit of caliphate, he didn’t give him dessert after the meal. Even he said “there is no defect of this meal.”
The caliphate was offended by that word of the Sheikh. Then Sheikh became aware of his hidden inner world and so he drove the caliphate away.
Moreover, Mawlana Halid-i Bagdadi also drove one of his caliphates away. The reason was that while performing his guidance duty he took a golden gilded Qur’an as a gift from a statesman. However, Halid-i Bagdadi ordered him not to accept any gift during guidance duty. Therefore, when that statesman wanted to give him the gilded copy of Qur’an, he first said “I don’t take anything.” But, when the statesman insisted on saying “it is not a covetable goods, it is the word of Allah”, he accepted the gift.
As a matter of fact, when Halid-i Bagdadi heard that event, he said “Didn’t I say to you not to accept any gift during guidance duty?” Then he drove the caliphate away from the tariqa.
However that caliphate had a quite lofty degree. Indeed, when he turned to Diyarbaqir (his home was there) from Damascus, his followers went to welcome him by getting an inkling of him although he was far away. On the other hand, after he had been driven away from the tariqa, no one went to welcome him until he came to his home. It was because even the followers didn’t hear that he had been driven away from the tariqa, he lost his esteem in their eyes and fell into disfavor.
After this talk had finished, Sheikh turned to me and said “Alaaddin, stand up! Take the ewer, let’s go to stream to take water.” At that time, it was spring and we were staying in high plateau. When we arrived at stream, I said to him: “My dear father! We must always pray for thanking almighty Allah as He grants you this good nature and this compassion. If we were in time of Shah-i Naqshband or Halid-i Bagdadi, they would drive all of us away from the tariqa.”
After my words finished, my father first read the following verse of the Qur’an:
“If Allah were to punish men according to what they deserve, He would not leave on the back of the (earth) a single living creature.” (Fatir,45)
Then he said: “If I treat everybody according to their behaviors in this time, I should drive all of them away from the tariqa. It is because there is no one adapting himself to the good manners. Moreover, I can’t predict how to educate most of the followers since I abstain from that they may become strange from the tariqa. Their ikhlas (sincerity), love and submission is too weak.”
He explained the reason of the second way of behaving on his own (in other words the reason of being very meticulous towards the members of his family): “If there was not any cudgel on your head and I didn’t give you the necessary education or not punish your faults on time by keeping your behaviors on probation, you would ignore the borders and be perished by going beyond the limit.”
Ahmad Haznavi (may Allah be pleased with him) was extraordinarily enduring against torments and oppressions coming from people. A person’s strength is incapable of doing so. One of examples of it is this:
Muhammad b. Abdurrahman who was the Sheikh of famous Tay tribe in Nusaybin tormented to our Sheikh and his oppressions became so evident that everybody knew them. One of these oppressions happened like that: Although the government of French had exiled Sheikh to TalMaruph which was located far away from Turkey boundary, he had been again exiled to Deyrzur and Heseke from there for 3 years. It was because the followers were coming to repent for entering the tariqa in thousands of groups by passing over the boundaries. But, after awhile both of governments realized that the accusations directed towards him were untruthful, he wasn’t a supporter of any political party, he hadn’t got any worldly purpose but his purpose was only to make people entering the righteous path. Then, they gave him permission to locate in TalMaruph. It was a deserted and demolished place. It wasn’t a real property of anyone. With the order of Sheikh, houses were built there. Its land was made cultivable. So, he located there for a time.
One day, the sheikh of Tay tribe Muhammad turned up with his armed fellows. His aim was to remove our Sheikh from the village and obtain there. The followers of Sheikh opposed to him and so, he was obliged to beat a retreat together with his armed fellows. It was because our Sheikh and his followers were stronger than them. But when Sheikh came, he prevented his followers and wanted a delay up to the morning from the sheikh of Tay so as to make the village empty. However the sheikh of Tay didn’t want to give them a delay. He poured their meals in the caldron and wanted them to make the village empty at once. Thereupon, Sheikh migrated to TalMaruph village at dark night by taking along his wife, his children and all his followers.
As you see, the sheikh of Tay had captured the village with oppression and injustice. On the other hand, although Sheikh had enough power to make a stand against the sheikh of Tay and prevent his oppression, he endured the injustices of him by taking the behaviors of the great as a model, accepting their behaviors as a guide and going on their righteous path.
Afterwards, in this subject he said “The sheikh of Tay caused me to obey our beloved Prophet (may peace be upon Him) in the subject of hegira.”
Furthermore, the more surprising thing of our sayings is that: One day that sheikh of Tay got ill. When his illness became grave, he sent a message to Sheikh by one of his fellows and called him. According to his message, he wanted to turn his faults and repent again in front of Sheikh. We say “again”, because he had repented in front of Sheikh before, but he had broken his repentance.
When Sheikh received this message, he began to make preparations for going to him. Thereupon, we said to him: “O! Sheikh hadrat! How do you go to his foot? That man did his worst about oppression, misbehaved and even didn’t fail to talk against our greats in a bad way.” He got angry because of our words and gave us this answer:
“How can I stay behind from conducing towards that cruel man to enter the righteous path and repent? I swear to Allah when he calls me for repenting by sending his fellow, I go to him on foot if I can’t find any mount. It doesn’t matter whether it’s raining cats and dogs.”
Indeed, he went to that man and gave up what he did to him. Then, the man again repented n front of him and after awhile he died with that repentance. That event was the strongest sample of those words of Sheikh:
“One who enters the chain of those depending on Naqshbandi tariqa and later goes beyond the limits by committing various sins becomes repentant, with the blessing of this tariqa, by vowing not to do them again even in his parting breath.”
We give thanks to Allah for this great blessing which is neither sold nor bought.
Ahmad Haznavi (may Allah be pleased with him) behaved tolerantly towards the people who was jealous of him and denied him. Although they opposed to him violently, he behaved them in a well manner. Moreover, one of those deniers asserted that the Sheikh and his followers were infidels and said that waging war against them was more virtuous than waging war against infidels. Allah help us!
The other denier of him asserted that the Sheikh claimed to be a prophet. He casted aspersions upon Sheikh which was grating on the ear. Everybody, even people from distant places like Hama and Amman was unanimous in giving an answer to that denier. So, they organized a protest march against that denier. Furthermore, having been sent too many denial letters people wanted both the owner of newspaper and the slanderer to be punished. But all of these were done without the order and knowledge of Sheikh. It was because the participants of this protest thought that there was no need to evidence and demonstration since the asserted things were lie.
Another denier of Sheikh wrote into a small piece of paper that “Sheikh Ahmad, Sufyan and his followers were devils” and hanged it up the wall of mosque, when Sheikh was in Amudah village for conciliation we mentioned before. When Sheikh learnt that, he said “I didn’t ignore the words said about me, but the bad words and slanders said for my followers hurt my feelings.”
When that shameful message was heard in the town, the mayor came before the Sheikh together with a committee and said: “I want to gather all men in the town and find out who did this shameful thing by comparing their handwriting with the writing hanged on the wall of mosque. I also want to punish him seriously.” On the other hand Sheikh gave this answer to the mayor:
“I don’t consent such a thing. I want to assign the person who did this action to almighty Allah. The attitudes of my seniors were so. Praise be to Allah who makes me obey them.”
As a matter of fact, he advised us to be tolerant towards his deniers and those who were jealous of him, endure the torments coming from them and be genial and soft-spoken while meeting with them.
Ahmad Haznavi (may Allah be pleased with him) was quite modest and extremely genial and soft-spoken in spite of his exalted degree. While he was speaking with the public, he used an understandable tongue for sinking to their thought level. Therefore, one who talked with him didn’t want to leave near him.
In addition to this, he disliked the worldly desires and pleasures; he ate and wore whatever he found. In many times, he used to eat the meal that his followers ate. Besides, he often reproved us severely: “Why do you choose some meals for yourself? What is the difference between the followers and you?”
He usually spread rush mat out on his room. However, only when one of family members of his sheikh or one of his select guests came to visit him, he showed respect to his guests by spreading out nice carpets on his room as much as he can. One day we asked him why he did so, then he replied: “Our beloved Prophet (may peace be upon Him) slept on rush mat. Moreover, I often went to our sheikh’s room and I didn’t see anything on the ground except rush mat.”
Another example showing that how he was fond of plainness is this: His sincere and close friend Hajji Ismail Aga gave him a lantern lamp as a gift. But he didn’t let us light the lamb in his room. In response to our insistence in this subject he said that: “A good man is not the man whose house is light, but he is the man whose grave is light.”
As a matter of fact after he died and a dome was made on his grave, we hanged that lantern lamp on his dome so that people could read Qur’an there at nights. Therefore, praise be to Allah who enlightens his inner aspect with the lantern lamp which He didn’t let him light in his room while he was alive and praise be to Allah who grants him this privilege. Furthermore, we absolve Allah, who creates queerness in the words and actions of saints, from all deficiencies.
Besides all of these, Ahmad Haznavi (may Allah be pleased with him) was so brave and extremely majestic. He had such a character that respected by people. With the expression of Qur’an, we say: “In the way of Allah, they never fear the blame of any blamer.”
Indeed, when he was in Haseke because of an exile, he went to talk with the commander of French occupying forces together with Haco Aga who was the leader of Haphirkan tribe. His aim was to protest his being exiled without a reason. At the moment of this talk, he used so harsh words towards French commander that nobody could deny it. He addressed to him like that in brief:
“The leaders of tribes come to you and they feel honored to talk with you. As to me, I regard having come to your foot as a deficiency and dishonorableness. It is because you are promising every month to let me go my home at the end of month, and let me free by ending my exile, but you are not keeping your promise when the end of month comes. Where are pacta sunt servanda, keeping one’s word and justice? Why do you behave me so? I’m amazed, because I’m a citizen of Syria and an innocent man having not any fault. Moreover, as all groups and everybody know, I haven’t got any interest with politics.”
While Sheikh was saying those harsh words towards French commander, Haco Aga who was together with him indicated him to speak softly and change his tune. He feared because French commander could talk back inappropriately. On the other hand, Sheikh was speaking frankly without minding his well-intentioned signs. French commander was also listening to him carefully. After Sheikh’s words ended, French commander gave this answer to him:
“O! Sheikh! You are right in your sayings. We also know the situation. We don’t want the religious leaders to have recourse to statesmen.”
Haco Aga listening to those talks was astonished because of French commander’s soft and respectful attitude towards Sheikh. That commander was a man getting angry quickly and treating cruelly towards the public.
One day, the sheikh of Tay tribe we mentioned before came before Sheikh and wanted to kiss his blessed hand after he had repented for his shameful attitudes and oppressions. However, Sheikh prevented him to kiss his hand with harsh and biting words and took him to task. Some of his sayings are these:
“I wish a wine maker woman would be the sheikh of Tay tribe instead of you. If such a woman were their sheikh, she would treat them more honestly and virtuously than you.”
After those words, Sheikh drove him away by not giving him a chance to say anything. This unexpected harsh attitude that Sheikh assumed towards that man was one of his miraculous deed. It was because that sheikh was known as so cruel and influential man in those days. Moreover, because of this everybody including some statesmen were avoiding from his evil.
Another sample of the attitude of Sheikh was like that: When Nationalists revolted against French occupying forces, French commander sent a message to Sheikh with one of his fellows and called him. When Sheikh arrived, the commander said to him:
“O! Sheikh! The reason of calling you is this: I want you to support us against nationalists. If you stand by our side, we will give you whatever you want and do whatever you want as long as you stay in this country.”
Sheikh replied to French commander that: “My religious beliefs hinder me to support you.” Then, the commander said: “In that case, we will take back the Haseke village which we gave you as place of exile.” He threatened Sheikh with harsh words. However Sheikh didn’t mind those threats. He neither compensated from his attitude nor submitted to the occupying commander.
As a matter of fact, after that day French occupying management assumed a hostile attitude towards Sheikh. They dispossessed him of the above-mentioned village. However, he built about twenty houses in the village and opened draw wells. They gave the village to above-mentioned sheikh of Tay who collaborated with the occupying management. In short, Sheikh had no peace until the occupying forces made our country empty (praise be to Allah).
Ahmad Haznavi (may Allah be pleased with him) showed great interest to his guests and followers. He treated each of them according to their value and degree. He was concerned with their meals, looked at their bread and stood over while meal was given even it was lentil soup. When he saw any deficiency about this subject, he got angry and said “I don’t say that you must absolutely give delicious meals to the followers, because we can’t afford it. But, give the existing meal to them perfectly and without defect so that they can eat what you put in front of them.”
Besides this, he was closely concerned with the situation of guests and followers. Furthermore, what they eat, where they sleep, how they are served, all of these were under his opinion, care and concern.
In spite of all his efforts, he often said “the issue of guests caused my hair to turn white, because I see deficiencies in entertaining them. If I attempt to serve them with my own hand, they don’t want this. If it weren’t so, I would give them meal on my own and make their service while they were eating. It is because the most important source of pride of a person in front of Allah and servants is to show interest to his guests.”
Dear reader! You mustn’t suppose his guests as much as the other’s guests! On the contrary his guests were sometimes fifty, sometimes eighty, sometimes a hundred, sometimes two hundred and sometimes thousands or two thousands.
Ahmad Haznavi (may Allah be pleased with him) looked after too many hunger people, made too many naked people wear, answered the purpose of people who were in need of; he undertook the care of some followers, needies and people who had recourse to him. He paid all these expenses from his own property; he didn’t trust wealth of his followers and people in his circle.
In fact both the people in his circle and his followers didn’t provide him worldly wealth. Moreover, they didn’t undertake the care of about forty students being educated continuously in the madrasah. They even didn’t provide the firewood necessary for cooking the students’ meals and bread. Sheikh provided most of the expenses from his own property and undertook the necessary necessities of students like clothes, bed and etc. for concerning with the students duly. He gave great importance to the scholars and students. He respected them more than everybody.
Ahmad Haznavi (may Allah be pleased with him) behaved generously towards poor and beggars having recourse to him from every sides. As a matter of fact he said at the moment of his last illness; “Praise be to Allah, I have never rejected the request of any beggar. I have never disappointed any people who beg for me throughout my life. I have tried to give something everybody according to their situation, their share and the present possibilities.” Indeed, we saw that his door didn’t stay without beggars almost every day. In spite of this, the inner meaning of saying so is to encourage us being generous and direct us towards this way with a refined style.
Ahmad Haznavi (may Allah be pleased with him) didn’t like to be spoken about world issues near him. Moreover he said to us “Don’t speak world issues near me and don’t consult with me about such issues, because I leave your world issues to you.” In spite of this when we spoke about world issues in his room and in his meeting or we consulted with him about those issues, he didn’t look at us and moreover he drove us away from his side angrily. He also reproved the people severely who didn’t obey his order by saying “Didn’t I warn you not to speak world issues near me and not to consult with me about these issues, and didn’t I leave your world issues to you?” Furthermore, he watched us carefully and prevented us when he saw that we lost ourselves in the world or we behaved inappropriately.
In the eyes of Ahmad Haznavi (may Allah be pleased with him) the most important thing was to study for learning knowledge. He always encouraged us to study for learning knowledge. All the time he inspired this to us. Moreover, he never ordered service neither to me nor to Izzeddin in apprehension of that it would hinder our study life.
In many times, he preferred to do some works on his own and avoided from wanting us to do those works so that they didn’t prevent us studying. For encouraging us to learn knowledge, he often mentioned us his sheikh’s words: “One who wants the world should learn knowledge, one who wants the hereafter should learn knowledge and one who wants both of them also should learn knowledge.”
In his talks, he told the virtues of scholars, encouraged scholars to teach and take care of students closely, expressed that they shouldn’t be busy with the works preventing them teaching knowledge, reproved the scholars who were busy with such works severely and bored when he met with the scholars who were far away from teaching students by losing themselves in neither world issues nor the other things. The reason of his behavior was compassion he felt towards the scholars. Since he felt close to scholars, he advised them so that they didn’t miss God’s reward like teaching.
As a matter of fact he said at the moment of his last illness: “I thank Allah because of these three things: First of all, I have never rejected request of any beggar. Secondly, I have never wanted something from anyone. But, I must explain this subject. At first I was very poor, because on one hand I was busy with studying knowledge though I had lost my father when I was a child; on the other hand I had been entering the tariqa. Because of these two reasons, I couldn’t be an imam in a village. Therefore, I was explaining my situation to some people in whom I trusted so that they could help me in consequence of inspiration that Allah gave them. On the other hand I was reluctant to do so, it gave offence to me. One day, I explained my situation to Molla Muhammad Amin, one of caliphates of my sheikh, and said to him “My situation was so so.” He replied me by making joke: “If you don’t make so, then you will die.” In spite of this, I wasn’t relieved. Moreover, Molla Muhammad Amin said to me “don’t tell this situation to our sheikh. He is such a man that he kills people, in other words he prevents you from doing this.”
After I heard these words from him, I became anxious completely. I began to fear more. After all, I went to our sheikh and said to him: “I haven’t got any income that can provide livelihood of my household. Moreover, I’m not an imam of a village that I can live on alms of village. Therefore, when summer comes, I want alms from the people in whom I trust. If I’m there at the moment of alms distribution, the man gives me the alms in person. But if I’m in my sheikh’s house at that moment, the man delivers the alms to my agent. What do you say to me about this subject? Do you think there is any harm of it?” After my words finished, my sheikh bended his head and after a while he stayed in that position he gave answer to me: “Don’t want that, because in one respect it is regarded as to beg for the others. Trust in Allah.”
After my sheikh prevented me from behaving like that, one day I went to the above-mentioned caliphate and said to him: “Our sheikh didn’t permit me to do so.” Thereupon the caliphate replied to me: “Didn’t I say to you not to tell him it? Didn’t I say to you that he kills people, in other words he doesn’t permit such a thing?” Then he poked fun at me: “Now go and eat poison.”
Thirdly, although my possibilities were insufficient at first, my house had never been without student during my life. Moreover, one day there was only one meal in our house. I and my wife were in trouble since we would stand apart from students because of bad straits. In spite of this, in that evening we ate whatever we found together with the students. There was neither handful flour nor another food in our house for the following day. But when we passed the whole night in reliance to Allah, almighty Allah sent our food from an unexpected place and eliminated our trouble. By the way I want to make it clear that almighty Allah granted great endurance, patience and desire to my wife in the subject of enduring numerous troubles of either students or followers.”
Sheikh told those because he wanted to encourage us getting these characteristics. Having these characteristics is equivalent of the world and everything in the world. Therefore, he aspired to us becoming colourful with his own colour in a beautiful way. We ask Allah for granting us success in order to behave as he wanted.
Ahmad Haznavi (may Allah be pleased with him) had a great endeavor and amazing power of disposal in the subject of educating followers and guiding saliks (people who engaged in Islamic spiritual path). People were coming to him from every side by passing over distant places. On the other hand, he didn’t leave from his house, even his room. He didn’t go on a journey for guidance except the previous times when he wasn’t famous.
On the other hand, the crowds who heard his virtues were going to him. Indeed, he attracted people by making them carried away by a mystical experience with love wine. The people who fell into this ecstasy were entering the tariqa in crowds by leaving their families and properties, going away from their bad habits and shameful behaviors by repenting in front of him. They were also directing towards learning religious duties, praying their ritual worship and repairing injustices they did before.
However most of those people hadn’t known anything in the subject of religion apart from the doctrinal testimony of Islam before they repented in front of him. Almighty Allah made so many people go to the righteous path, raised the flag of Shari’a and set up the milestone of Naqshbandi tariqa by means of him.
In one of his talks he said that: “Sheikh Abdurrahman Tahi and my Sheikh Muhammad Ziyauddin (may Allah be pleased with them) were walking around among public by arranging travels for the purpose of guidance. Sometimes their travels lasted in two months or longer. Their aims were that almighty Allah made people go to the righteous path by means of them. They said to me that: “Sit at your home. We gather the people around you with a rod in our hand. God willing, we forward the people in crowds from every place towards you.”
As a matter of fact, almighty Allah made people built mosques and madrasahs and appoint imams there by means of him. All of those imams were dependent on his way. Therefore, congregations, dhkirs and hatme were increased; instigations, disorders, killing each other, robberies, oppressions and burglaries among public were removed. This success first and foremost is the result of his ikhlas (sincerity) and directing towards Allah with uprightness. Indeed, our beloved Prophet (may peace be upon him) said that: “Everything bows down in front of the person who submits himself to Allah.”
Most of his caliphates were famous scholars. Each of them located in a region and devoted themselves to guide and teach knowledge to the public.
Ahmad Haznavi (may Allah be pleased with him) was a skilful and wise guide in the area of educating and training the followers. Moreover, in many times he gave his orders with sign. When he wanted to offer someone a service but hesitated whether his word was kept or not, he said to us: “tell him to do this work, but don’t explain him that I want him to do it.” When we asked him why he behaved so, he gave this answer to us:
“The reason is not to make him suffer damage. It is because when a follower disobeys his sheikh’s order, he most certainly goes out of good manners and incurs losses.”
Another temper of him is this: when he ordered a work to a man and the man doing that ordered work fastidiously considered that “when my sheikh sees my work, he will be pleased with me and pray for me”, he appeared suddenly in front of the man and got angry. Then, he said the faults in his work to his face. Moreover, the man hesitated to attempt doing anything in apprehension of destroying the good deed of his action by being carried away ostentation and hypocrisy. Then, he felt remorse for doing so.
Furthermore, when any of his followers broke any rule of good manners, he clearly or secretly prevented him from doing shameless things at the earliest. Indeed, his caliphate Molla Abraham Karsavari who always stood by him told such an event:
“When Sheikh went to Hejaz for performing his Hajj duty, he took his brother Molla Mustafa and me together with him. This brother of Sheikh taught the good manners of tariqa to most of the followers. Therefore after he died, Sheikh said about him that: “I’m very sad, because I couldn’t include him in the chain of caliphates. Although I offered him to be a caliphate since I believed the perfection of his ability and the adequacy of his talent, he rejected my offer and asked me not to give him the responsibility of such a heavy duty. He hesitated to undertake the responsibility of caliphate, because he was extremely modest and saw himself inadequate in that subject.”
He set out on Hajj journey by taking me and his brother about whom he talked about. Beginning from we entered in the border of Haramayn, he began to break both my and Molla Mustafa’s heart. Every day he got angry at us once or a few times.
We became so sad that we couldn’t talk with anyone because of sorrow and cry. We couldn’t think anything apart from worrying about whether he got angry or not. On the other hand we carried away by a great bewilderment because of that attitude of Sheikh. It was because he personally advised too many things to Hajjis. The main advisers were to get along with fellow travelers, endure the troubles they would give and not to break anyone’s heart. In spite of his these advisers, he behaved us like that.
But after we went out the border of Haramayn, he called me in a very kind voice. I immediately went to him by running. I considered “Thank Allah, it is obvious that he is not angry today.” He ordered me to bring water in a ewer. Then, he started to walk towards the valley. I prepared the ewer filled with water at once and delivered it to him. Then I began to walk behind him.
When we arrived at the valley, he suddenly kissed my cheek and said to me: “O! Molla Abraham! I want you to give me your blessing, because I treated roughly to you during this journey. Therefore, up to now your tears haven’t stopped.
I swear to Allah it’s true that your behavior is based on a specific point. That point is this: According to the books the merit of Hajj can be lost because of even a little sin committed during Hajj. Therefore, since I hesitated that your merit could be lost because of sins during this journey, I began to break your heart so that you couldn’t find chance to commit any crime as you were busy with your own sorrow. Thus, while I was saddening you, I burned myself so that you wouldn’t be one of those who were exhausted. In other words, I sacrificed myself for the sake of my friend.”
When I heard those words, I was affected so much that I couldn’t keep myself from crying. While I was shedding tears, I gave him this answer: “May my soul be sacrificed to you! How could it be that you want me to give my blessing? However you are my sheikh and educator, you did this amazing behavior for my benefit. If there is your right on me, I give up it to you a thousand times.”
When I turned to his brother Molla Mustafa and told him the situation, he said to me “I swear to Allah it’s true that he behaved me in the same way.”
Sheikh had a great endeavor and a peculiar disposition like a skillful doctor. When he saw Zikrullah, he looked down on himself.
As a matter of fact when I sometimes saw him while crying, I was worried about whether he heard something bitter from our Master and asked him “My dear father, why are you crying?” He replied to me:
On the one hand I see this love, this ecstasy, this eagerness, this enthusiasm and these people who come to me in crowds from every place; on the other hand I look at myself, so I can’t keep my tears. It is because I can’t see anyone among people more worthless than me; even I can’t see anyone as worthless as me. In spite of this, I caused the hidayah (leading to the righteous path) of this numerous and countless crowd. Therefore, in many times I fear to be included in the judgment of this hadith:
“Almighty Allah certainly supports this religion even by means of a sinful person.”
I hesitate to be one of those who are implied in the hadith, in other words I hesitate to be sacrificed for the sake of this ummah. Therefore, since I felt this, I have prayed to Allah like that: “O! My Lord, if this love directed towards me, this ecstasy and this crowd are appropriate for the acceptance of Your will and it is for Your sake, keep them going on. If not, put an end to them in a very short time.” I prayed in the same way in Kaaba and Rawdha-i Mutahhara.
As you see, every day he was in the way of progress and advancement. As a matter of fact, his faithful and sincere friend Muhammad Said Dayri told that event:
“One night in Hazna after the talk was finished, Sheikh stood up and ordered his famous caliphate Molla Abraham (above-mentioned) to bring a copper vessel filled with water. Then he took off his frock and gave it to me. He started to walk. We were also walking behind him. When he arrived at the centre of village pasturage, he approached to Molla Abraham. After he drew him towards himself by clasping tightly, he said to him “Say: ‘I swear to Allah it’s true, I only say the truth’” Thereupon, Molla Abraham said: “I swear to Allah it’s true, I will only say the truth.” But, Sheikh again drew him towards himself by clasping severely and again said to him: “Say: ‘I swear to Allah it’s true, I only say the truth’” Molla Abraham replied as he said before: “I swear to Allah it’s true, I will only say the truth.” For the third time, he again said to Molla Abraham “Say: ‘I swear to Allah it’s true, I only say the truth’”. Then he took the same answer from him for the third time: “I swear to Allah it’s true, I will only say the truth.” Then he said to his caliphate: “O! My brother Molla Abraham, have you ever seen any sign of factiousness on me? If you see any sign of it on me, say it to me so that I give it up.”
When Molla Abraham heard those words, he cried his heart out and said to him: “I swear to Allah it’s true, I have never seen anything wrong on you.”
Dear reader! The legends of Ahmad Haznavi (may Allah be pleased with him) are numberless and countless. Our purpose is to express our respect towards him and take his behaviors as a model by becoming aware of his life style. This is enough for it. Therefore, we saw these legends enough.
Otherwise this poor Allaaddin knows and believes that he is faraway from this issue, he is not the cavalry of this area. However the other followers didn’t handle the issue, not because of they are incapable but because of some hidden causes they know. So, this poor man saw it useful to take the first step in this issue in spite of his misery and insufficiency.
Because, in this way he caused these legends transfer from absence to existence. Thank Allah there are too many people among the followers who correct his error and arrange excessiveness and deficiency in his writing.
Peace and prayer be upon our beloved prophet Muhammad, His Companions and His family.