THE MAGNIFICENCE OF HAZRAT ABU MUHAMMAD MUHIYUDDIN SHEIKH ABDUL QADIR JILAANI(RAHMATULLAH ALAIH)
Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilaani(Rahmatullah Alaih) was born in 470 AH in Jilaan (Persia), and passed away in the month of Rabi Al-Thani in 561 AH. Because of his immense contribution to Sufism and Sharia, he(Rahmatullah Alaih) became known as the Spiritual Excellence, Ghaus e Azam. He(Rahmatullah Alaih) is the grand Sheikh of the Qadri order. His perfection had no boundaries.
Deviant Nawab Siddiq Hassan Khan Bhopali, and Deobandi pioneer Molvi Ashraf Ali Thanvi have written in their books that the fame achieved by Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilaani(Rahmatullah Alaih) amongst the saints (awliya), no other saint achieved that fame. Because of his fame, respect and honour, no Muslim can say that he is not aware of Hazrat Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilaani(Rahmatullah Alaih).
All the saints in the ummah of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ received recognition after achieving spiritual status, as a result of extreme devotion and worship of Allah Ta'ala. But Hazrat Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilaani(Rahmatullah Alaih) achieved fame before his birth.
In Tafreeh Ul-Khatir, Sheikh Abdul Qadir(Rahmatullah Alaih) has written that before Imaam Hassan Askari(Radi Allaahu Anhu) passed away, he(Radi Allaahu Anhu) handed over his prayer mat (jaye Namaaz) to his disciple and asked him to pass it to his disciple and it had to be passed down until it reached 470 AH, when a saint will be born, whose name will be Abdul Qadir and his title will be 'Muhiyyuddin'.
Imaam Hassan Askari(Radi Allaahu Anhu) was the eleventh imaam. It is the splendour of Ghaus e Azam that he(Rahmatullah Alaih) was handed down a prayer mat from an imaam who existed more than two hundred years before him.
Hazrat Abu Saleh Musa(Rahmatullah Alaih), Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilaani's(Rahmatullah Alaih) father had a dream in which he saw Prophet Muhammad ﷺ, who said to him, 'O my son Abu Saleh, Allah Ta'ala has given you a child who is my beloved son and beloved of Allah Ta'ala. His ranking among the saints (awliya) is akin to my rank among the prophets'. This is the magnificence of Ghaus e Azam Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilaani(Rahmatullah Alaih), the good news of whose birth was given by Prophet Muhammad ﷺ.
Hazrat Ghaus e Azam Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilaani was called' 'mehboob e subhani', because the beloved Messenger 'of Allah ﷺ bestowed this title upon Ghaus e Azam(Rahmatullah Alaih).
The grand Sheikh of the Chishti order, Sheikh Moinuddin Khwaja Gareeb Nawaz Ajmeri(Rahmatullah Alaih) was once walking in the wilderness in the province of Khorasan in Iran. Ghaus e Azam(Rahmatullah Alaih) was delivering a sermon in the Jame Masjid of Baghdad and said, 'my feet is on the shoulders of all the saints (awliya). Hazrat Khwaja Moinuddin Gareeb Nawaz Ajmeri(Rahmatullah Alaih) heard him from the far distance and said, 'you feet is not only on my shoulders, but is on my eyes and on my head'.
Such is the dignity of Ghaus e Azam Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilaani(Rahmatullah Alaih).
And if a few unheard-of people refuse to believe the splendour of Ghaus e Azam(Rahmatullah Alaih), it does not make any difference to the dignity and magnificence of mehboob e subhani, Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilaani(Rahmatullah Alaih).
Allah Ta'ala says that a saint achieves the guardianship of faith (maqam e wilayet) through voluntary (nafil) worship.
Hazrat Abu Hurairah(Radi Allaahu Anhu) narrates that Prophet ﷺ said, 'verily Allah Ta'ala has said: 'whosoever shows enmity to a friend (wali) of mine, then I have declared war against him. And my servant does not draw near to Me with anything more loved to Me than the religious duties I have obligated upon him. And My servant continues to draw near to Me with supererogatory (nafil) deeds until I love him. When I love him, I am his hearing with which he hears, and his sight with which he sees, and his hand with which he strikes, and his foot with which he walks. Were he to ask (something) of Me, I would surely give it to him, and were to seek refuge with Me, I would surely grant him refuge'.' (Bukhari)
Just as Hazrat Sulaiman(alaihis salaam) was granted powers to listen to the ants, the saints have also been given powers.
It is narrated in Bahjat Al-Israr that one hundred Islamic scholars (Ulama) came to test Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilaani(Rahmatullah Alaih), each with a complicated question. It was the miracle (karamaat) of Ghaus e Azam(Rahmatullah Alaih) that he absorbed all their knowledge into himself. They became stunned staring each other. Hazrat Ghaus e Azam(Rahmatullah Alaih) felt pity on them and returned their knowledge. Hazrat Ghaus e Azam(Rahmatullah Alaih) addressed each of them individually with their names, and told them who had which question to ask, and then gave them the answers.
Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said that remembrance of the prophets is an act of worship, and remembrance of the saints (awliya) is freeing oneself of his sins.
Allah Ta'ala states in The Holy Quran:
'Only Allah is your friend and His Messenger and the believers, that they established Prayer and pay Zakaat and bow down before Allah'
(Surah Al-Ma'ida. verse 55)
The word 'wali' is a friend or a helper. Allah is your helper, Prophet ﷺ is your helper, and the pious is your helper.
It is stated in The Holy Quran that Hazrat Mariam(Radi Allaahu Anha) touched a dry date palm and it came back to life and started bearing dates. This is the dignity and the honour of the awliya. Hazrat Mariam(Radi Allaahu Anha) was an awliya, and this was her miracle (karamaat). This happened with the command and will of Allah Ta'ala (kudrat), but with the intercession (waseela) of a saint.
Prophet Muhammad ﷺ said, 'just as my honour and splendour is greater among the prophets, the honour of my ummah is greater than the ummah of other nations. Hence forth, the honour and the splendour of the awliya of my ummah are greater than the honour and splendour of the awliya of other nations'.
Hazrat Ghaus e Azam, Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilaani(Rahmatullah Alaih) went to visit his sick disciple Hazrat Ali Ibne Haiti(Rahmatullah Alaih). It was time for Hazrat Ghaus e Azam(Rahmatullah Alaih) to perform his nafil Namaaz, so the disciple took Hazrat Ghaus e Azam in his garden where were two, dried date trees. Hazrat Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilaani(Rahmatullah Alaih ) performed ablution (wudu) near one dry tree and then performed Namaaz near the other dry tree. After a few days, Hazrat Ali Ibne Haiti(Rahmatullah Alaih) presented Hazrat Ghaus e Azam(Rahmatullah Alaih) with some dates and said that they were from the two trees where he performed wudu and Namaaz. Hazrat Ghaus e Azam(Rahmatullah Alaih) placed the dates in front of him and recited The Holy Quran.'
Once, Hazrat Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilaani(Rahmatullah Alaih) was delivering a sermon and his disciple Hazrat Ali Ibne Haiti was sitting in front of him. During the sermon, Hazrat Ali Ibne Haiti fell asleep. Hazrat Ghaus e Azam Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilaani(Rahmatullah Alaih) saw this and descended from the pulpit (mimbar) and stood in front of sleeping Hazrat Ali Ibne Haiti with both his hands folded in respect. After a while, Hazrat Ali Ibne Haiti(Rahmatullah Alaih) awoke to find his sheikh, Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilaani(Rahmatullah Alaih) standing in front of him. He immediately stood up in respect. Hazrat Ghaus e Azam(Rahmatullah Alaih) smiled and said, 'the reason I am standing in front of you is because you were seeing Prophet Muhammad ﷺ in your dream and I was seeing Prophet ﷺ with my physical eyes'.
Such was the magnificence of Hazrat Abu Muhammad Muhiyuddin Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilaani(Rahmatullah Alaih).
This article is an abridged English translation of an Urdu sermon delivered by his eminence, Peer Syed Imroz Dean Saifi, Hanfi, Maturidi of Masjid Anwaar e Madina, Surrey BC Canada
If there is an inaccurate translation, please pardon it and not let it be a means to negatively reflect on the honoured presenter.