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Mir Muhammad Hamadani and his Contribution towards Islamisation of
Kashmir

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Muhammad Shafi Bhat

 


Abstract

From times immemorial Kashmir has been abode of great mystic legacy. Islam in Kashmir flourished through the same message represented by a galaxy of Mystics coming from distinct backgrounds especially from Central Asia. These Mystics changed the landscape of Kashmir and built a new religio-spritual culture, which was a unique combination of Islamic spiritual ethos (Ihsan) and regional mystical ethos of Rishis of Kashmir. Mir Muhammad Hamadani, an eminent heir to his father’s spiritual legacy, took forward the mission of his father (Saiyid Ali Hamadani known in Kashmir as founder of Islam in Kashmir) and added new heights to this Islamic Mystical Culture of Kashmir by establishing new socio- educational and spiritual institutions in Kashmir. He connected the global mystical culture of Islam or Tasawwuf with local mystic culture of Kashmir(Rishism) which resulted in permanence and dominance of unique Islamic mystical culture in Kashmir. The present paper highlights the role of Mir Muhammad Hamadani in the development of religio-spritual and educational institutions in Kashmir, with special reference to the construction of Sufi Khanqahs throughout Kashmir, and his successful influencing interaction with the wandering ascetics of Kashmir called Rishis which brought them not only close to Islamic mysticism (Tasawwuf) but also utilized their dedicated services for Islamisation of Kashmir.

Key words:  Islam, Spirituality, Khanqah, Sufis, Rishis, Kashmir, Central Asia
Introduction
From ancient times Kashmir has been unique not only in terms of its geography but also in its religio-spiritual ethos. Before spread of Islam, Kashmir was dominated by followers of Hinduism and Buddhism. As for advent of Islam in Kashmir is concerned, it is an established fact among medieval and modern historians of Kashmir that Islam was introduced long before foundation of Muslim Sultanate. Islam in Kashmir first got a momentum with the advent of Sufis with a missionary zeal from Central Asia, among such early Sufis including Shaikh Sharf-ud-Din Suhrwardi (famous in Kashmir as BulBul Shah, 1327 C.E)

Who was successful in influencing the Buddhist Sultan of Kashmir Rinchana (1320-1323 C.E), who accepted Islam and was renamed as Sultan Sadr-ud-Din and he was also successful in founding some early mosques and hospices around the capital city of Kashmir. Sheikh Sharf-ud-Din was followed by other Sufis from Central Asia, like Saiyid Jalal-ud-Din Bukhari, Syed Taj-ud-Din, Syed Hussain Simnani, all of whom played constructive role in the propagation of Islam in different parts of Kashmir. The year 1384 C.E marks a turning point in the history of Islam in Kashmir as it witnessed the arrival of a well-organized Islamic mission under the leadership of a great Sufi master, erudite scholar, versatile writer Saiyid Ali Hamadani (famous in Kashmir with the titles of Shah-i-Hamadan, Ali Sani) who was accompanied by about seven hundred followers, a majority of whom were themselves scholars in different branches of knowledge, art and craft . Although there are scholarly differences among historians about the number of times Syed Ali Hamadani came to Kashmir but at the same time all the scholars and historians (except some Sanskrit Chronicles who due to their biased approach had not mentioned visits of great Sayyid in Kashmir) are unanimous about his undisputed revolutionary role in Islamization of Kashmir . Sayyid Ali Hamadani’s unfinished mission was taken forward by his disciples under the capable leadership of his son Mir Syed Muhammad Hamadani, who was himself a distinguished scholar, prolific writer and an experienced Kubrawi Sufi saint.

Early Life of Mir Muhammad Hamadani
Mir Muhammad Hamadani was born in 774 A.H; He was only twelve years old at the time of his father’s demise in 786 A.H. Although his eminent father Syed Ali Hamadani was too busy in his scholarly and missionary activities but still he had assigned the duty of his tutorship to his most learned and capable prime disciples, who took special interest in the educational and spiritual training of Mir Muhammad Hamadani during the life time of Syed Ali Hamadani and also after his demise. Syed Ali Hamadani had left two documents for his son which included Wasiyat-nama and Khilafat- nama. Mir Muhammad Hamadani was offered the Wasiyat-nama just after his father’s death but Khilafat-nama was given to him only after a rigorous spiritual training for about four years under the supervision of Khawaja Ishaq Khatlani and Mullah Noor-ud-Din Jaffar Badakshahi- both of them being the close disciples and companions of his father Mir Syed Ali Hamadani. In the document Syed Ali Hamadani had advised his son that he should first complete his education and then go for world travel (sayahat) in order to improve his character and enlighten his heart and soul. As per his father’s guidance Mir Muhammad Hamadani mastered both esoteric and exoteric sciences of knowledge in his youth before starting formally his missionary activities .

Arrival of Mir Muhammad Hamadani in Kashmir:
Mir Muhammad Hamadani arrived in Kashmir at a young age of twenty two, He was accompanied by about three hundred disciples. Kashmir at that time was ruled by Sultan Sikander (1389-1413). On his arrival in Kashmir, he was warmly received by the Sultan Sikander and his administration in Kashmir. Both the Sultan and his nobles were greatly impressed by the mystical and intellectual qualities of Syed Muhammad Hamadani . Just after his arrival in Kashmir Mir Muhammad Hamadani started his father’s mission with the same methodology of his father that “the common people imitate the behavior and culture of their rulers” so he gave first preference to winning over sultan, his nobles and  masses of the capital city, then with the passage of time, he visited all the corners of Kashmir and interacted with every section of society. The influence of Syed Muhammad Hamadani on the Sultan Sikander and his nobles can easily be understood from the famous medieval chronicle Jonaraja’s Rajatarangini in these words:
…As is moon among the stars, so was Muhammad [Mir Muhammad Hamadani] of mirs country among the Yavanas [Muslim]. Although a boy, he was their leader because of his learning. The king [Sultan Sikander] waited on him daily humble as a servant and like a student he daily took lessons from him [Mir Muhammad Hamadani]
The Sultan’s attachment with the Syed became multifaceted with the passage of time. The Sultan not only took lessons about Shariah from Mir Muhammad Hamadani but he also wedded him (Mir Muhammad Hamadani) with the royal court by offering him the hand of Sayiddah Taj Bibi, the daughter of the Sultan’s Noble Sayyid Hassan Baihaqi. Taj Bibi died after five years of Marriage. Thereafter Sayyid knotted with the daughter of Suhabhata who was commander in chief of Sultan Sikander, who had accepted Islam at the hands of Mir Muhammad Hamadani and was renamed as Saif-ud-Din , but she also died within short span of a year. Inspite of these relations of Mir Muhammad Hamadani with the royal court, his chief concern was only to fulfill the unaccomplished mission of his father i.e Islamization of Kashmir. For this  cause, Mir Muhammad utilized the influences of both Sultan Sikander and his administration. Regarding Mir Muhammad Hamadani’s activities during Sultan Sikander’s reign, one of the modern historians of Kashmir writes:
…the most important development of the reign of the Sultan [Sikander] was the conversions to Islam of a great number of people including many Brahmans and the Prime Minister and commander in chief of the Sultan. On account of the conversion of a large population including the ruling class, it became possible to Islamize the state craft, which was one of the main concerns of Mir Muhammad Hamadani .
Most of the historians have in their own right tried to explain the role played by the Sultan Sikander and his prime minister  Saif-ud-Din under the influence of Mir Muhammad vis-à-vis their supposed role in the forceful conversions and destruction of Hindu temples throughout the length and breadth of Kashmir. Although some historians have succumbed to the biased view of some of the near contemporary Sanskrit chroniclers as regards the destruction of Hindu temples, yet some modern objective analyzers of Kashmir history, like P Muhib-ul-Hassan after scrutinizing the historical texts and evidences of Mirza Haider Dughlat, Abul Fazl and Mughal emperor Jahangir who have respectively talked of at least 150 standing big temples, which existed even during their times and were perfectly preserved in Kashmir. In this context  Muhib-ul-Hassan has aptly remarked:
...the Iconoclastic activities of Sikander have been greatly exaggerated in many instances it was not Sikander who pulled down the temples but what really happened was that when the inhabitants of a certain locality embraced Islam, the temple was converted into a mosque or it went into ruins due to sheer neglect
As a matter of fact one should minutely study both the Sanskrit chronicles and Persian hagiographers for proper understanding of Sultan Sikander’s policy and influence of Mir Muhammad Hamadani on his administration and policies. His reign must not be visualized within the context of his highly exaggerated iconoclastic fervour but it must also be viewed in relation to his elaborate arrangements made for not only establishment of institutions of learning but also for introducing new laws as regards the eradication of social evils like ban on alcohol, ban on gambling and burning of widows among Hindu community, a practice called Sati from Kashmir society.

Works of Mir Muhammad Hamadani:
Like great Sufi masters of Kubrawi and Suhrwardi order, Mir Muhammad Hamadani was not only equipped with the bookish knowledge in different subjects, he had practical knowledge of the rationale of human behavior, human experience and social processes as he had travelled widely and interacted with different peoples pertaining to different areas and of diverse backgrounds. Just like his father, Mir Muhammad Hamadani was not only a mystic and a preacher, but also prolific writer both in Persian and Arabic. About the impact of Mir Muhammad Hamadani’s discourses and works in Kashmir, the famous medieval chronicle Baharistan-i-Shahihasaptly remarked:
Through sermonizing and exhortations, he [Mir Muhammad] succeeded in enlightening the hearts of the people with the world-embellishing faith of the choicest among men-the faith of Islam. Despite the in experience of a youth, he was gifted with remarkable piety and knowledge of sciences esoteric as well as exoteric
Although he was very young when he took over the responsibilities of continuing his father’s mission, yet he was such an expert and mature scholar like his father that the two books he wrote in Kashmir, one on logic and the other on sufism were mistaken for the compositions of his father Sayyid Ali Hamadani by his murids (disciples) of the latter, so identical were these works in depth and scholarship with the writings of his father. It is reported that Mir Muhammad Hamadani had written about 45 books and Rasail on different religious sciences and most of them are extinct now because unfortunately they have not been preserved in Kashmir. The author of Waqiat-e-Kashmir, Muhammad Azam Didamari gives some valuable information about two works of Sayyid Muhammad Hamadani- he mentions that Mir Muhammad Hamadani wrote a book on Tasawuf for the Sultan Sikander and another one on logic. The latter one (Sharh-i-shamah), written on logic is actually on account of his serious intellectual discussions with Syed Muhammad Hisari , the former one, Jami- al- ulum wa Qami al Zunan has of late been identified in Tashkent by Shams-ud- Din Ahmad and more so identified and consulted by Farooq Bukhari in Nadwat-al-ulama in Lucknow. About the latter one, Sharah –i-shamih, it is also mentioned that it is actually the commentary of the Sayyid on Al-Shimah, the famous treatise on logic by Katibi Qazwani . Mir Muhammad also wrote a treatise on Tasawuf for Sultan Sikander and named it Ar-Risalat-al-Sikandariya although the treatise is now extinct but it was available and consulted up to the Mughal rule in Kashmir, in the works of famous Sufis and hagiographers of later medieval times we find several references of his books as they have consulted his books and they were highly impressed by the scholarship of Mir Muhammad Hamadani .

Institutionalization of his Mission in Kashmir
Just after his arrival in Kashmir Mir Muhammad Hamadani adopted the methodology of his father and the Islamization of Kashmir became his prime focus during his stay in Kashmir. For this  mission he not only created a network of Islamic Institutions like madrasas, legal schools, fatwa organizations, mosques and Khankahs but also utilized the human resources available to him (both his companions who were themselves well versed in different sciences and arts and the native mystics of Kashmir namely Rishis ) very perfectly which resulted in a massive change and the profound development of Islamic Culture in Kashmir. The famous institutions he founded in Kashmir not only represented the spiritual ethos during Sayyid’s lineage during his time but they also played a constructive role throughout the Kashmir history in the spiritual and social upliftment of Kashmiri Muslims down the line. Mir Muhammad Hamadani personally supervised the construction of the first and the famous Khanqah of Kashmir called Khanqah-i-Muallah. The construction of Khanqah was started in 1396 C.E (798 A.H) at the place where the Shah-i-Hamadan used to pray and preach during his stay in Kashmir. Right from its foundation the great Khanqah had represented the spiritual and cultural ethos of Kashmir’s blend with Islam, the Khanqah was not built for being only a mere place of regular worship, the concept of building the Khanqah was far more ambitious. It was designed to serve as an institution with many functions, a sanctuary for pious and devoted individuals, a resting place for travelers, a charitable organization for the needy and hungry, and a cultural center for Islamic learning. A management structure headed by an appointed administrator was put in place to oversee the implementation of the constitution of Khanqah based on Islamic principles of compassion, generosity and love for the creation of God.Pious and well trained staff with specific individual operational responsibilities was appointed for day-to-day running of the institution of Khanqah . Besides Khanqah-i-Muallah, Mir Muhammad Hamadanibuilt network of other Khanqahs throughout Kashmir with the same missionary zeal and to educate about spiritual purification, to uplift masses socially, educationally and morally. The other Khanqahs which were built under the guidance of Mir Muhammad Hamadani include Khanqah-i-Wala in the Wachi, Khanqah-i-Kubrawiya at Mattan, Khanqah at Sopore, Khanqah Faiz–i-Panah in Tral, Khanqah-i-Ameeriya at Monghaama, Pulwama, Khanqah-i-Amir at Shey near Leh and Khanqah-i-Aala in Dooru Shahabad. These Khanqahs were not only centers of spirituality but also played meticulous role in social and educational reform of Kashmiri society, not only during the stay of Mir Muhammad Hamadani in Kashmir but throughout history of Muslims in Kashmir.
Another monumental institution which was built on the advice and guidance of Mir Muhammad is Jamia Masjid at Nowhatta, Srinagar. The historical Grand Mosque of Kashmir was built on his instruction- the mosque ever since its foundation worked as the symbol of Islamic culture in Kashmir and became a platform for expression of Muslim aspirations vis-à-vis the political, social and economic challenges and developments throughout the history of Kashmir. This Jamia of Kashmir built under his advice by Sultan Sikander in 1394 C.E is still in the contemporary times called Bae’d Masheed Grand Mosque of Kashmir).The Jamia is unique not only in terms of its big size but also in terms of its unique architecture, the grand mosque with its unique architecture has majestic 378 wooden Deodar pillars, supporting wooden ceiling with 346 pillars of 21 feet high and 5 feet girth and 32 pillars of 48 feet high and 6 girth, The Jamia is spread over 27 canals of land, it possesses the capacity to accommodate 33333 devotees for  prayer (salah) inside and in the month of Ramadan an estimated 1 lakh people pray Jumah Salah in the Jamia . The pulpit of Jamia has always been famous for its preachers called Mirwaizan-i-Kashmir,as they have always played a role in socio-educational awakening of Kashmiri Muslims down the line. Near the Jamia Masjid, First hospital of Kashmir (Shifa-Khana) was built on the advice of Mir Muhammad Hamadani. Besides this hospital there was also a college built next to Jamia called, College of Jamia, The college comprised of an experienced and learned faculty from different parts of the Muslim world especially Central Asia in different fields of knowledge like philosophy, mathematics, logic, metaphysics and other classical religious sciences.   But unfortunately, with the passage of time Muslims of Kashmir could not realize the meaning of building these socio-religious institutions adjacent to the mosques and ultimately these mosques including Jamia Masjid Srinagar became a mere place for conventional scheme of worship. Besides the grand mosque of Kashmir, Mir Muhammad built a network of other mosques all over the Kashmir; these Mosques were also accompanied by socio-educational institutions. Mir Muhammad also established Kashmir’s famous and mighty Eidgah in Srinager for Eid prayers and also arranged land for graveyard called Mall-Khah in Srinagar, Kashmir.
Last but not the least important contribution of Mir Muhammad Hamadani to Kashmir was his interaction with the native mystics of Kashmir called Rishis. Mir Muhammad was greatly impressed by their piety, simplicity, knowledge and spirituality especially of their Patron Sheikh Noor-ud- Din (known in Kashmir with  beloved epithets of Nund Rishi, Alamdar-I-Kashmir and Shaikh-ul-Alam). Mir Muhammad Hamadani interacted with Sheikh Noor-ud-Din and his prime disciples including some female disciples at Zalsu (presently in district Budgam of Kashmir six miles away from Tomb of Sheikh Noor-ud-Din in Charar-i-sharif) in 814 A.H. He was so much impressed by their self-purification, sincerity and love towards Islam and human creation that, he gave Sheikh Noor-ud-Din,Khat-i-Irshad , for his piety and God gifted qualities of understanding the pulse of Kashmiri society.In the content of this Khat-i-Irshad, Mir Muhammad addressed Sheikh Noor-ud-Din in these words:
...my brother Nuruddin Rishi Kashmiri who is pious, gnostic, man gifted with kashf, mujahidah and mushahida and is also a zahid and ‘abid. May Allah guide him like salihin and arifin and shower on him His grace like those who are perfect in piety and nearest to Allah. He not only insisted on his entry into the circle of Allah’s lovers and perfectly pious souls but implored for it with every fibre of his being. Hence I granted him Permission to make seekers (after the Truth) resentful and take allegiance from them and may guide and train those seeking guidance in the path .
A copy of the same Khat-i-Irshad has been preserved in the Khanqah-i-Muallah. He recognized Rishi order of Sheikh Noor-ud-Din as part and parcel of Kubrawi Sufi order in Kashmir and entrusted them the mission of Islamization. It was just after this interaction that Mir Muhammad decided to leave Kashmir after working in Kashmir for more than one decade . Having bestowed Kashmiri society an Islamic mould in every aspect of life, Mir Muhammad Hamadani left Kashmir and entrusted his mission to the native mystic of Kashmir Shaikh Noor-ud-Din who worked hard, after him to the best of his expectations and organized one more movement of Islamic awakening in Kashmir called Rishi Movement which continued the mission started by ShaikhSharf-ud-DinBulBul Shah, Shah-i-Hamadan Mir Syed Ali Hamadani and Mir Muhammad Hamadani  for centuries, Regarding influence of  Rishis in Kashmir, due their tolerant and sincere attitude, Medieval historians like Abul Fazl has aptly remarked in his Ain-i-Akbari,
…The most respectable class in this country [Kashmir] is that of Rishis who notwithstanding their need of freedom from the bonds of tradition and custom, are true worshipers of God. They do not loosen the tongue of calumny against those not of their faith, nor beg nor importune .
Although the presence of Rishis in Kashmir goes back to ancient times, but it was just after the historical interaction between Mir Muhammad Hamadani and Sheikh Noor-ud-Din, that we see Rishis not only coming closer towards Islam but also playing the role of torch bearers for the cause of humanity and Islam. After his departure from Kashmir, Mir Muhammad left for Makkah, then went back to his native country and passed away in 852 A.H and is buried in his ancestral graveyard next to his father Syed Ali Hamadani in Kolab (Tajikistan).
Conclusion
Kashmiri populace had a predilection towards mystic teachings prior to the advent of Islam in Kashmir. The propagation of Islam in Kashmir took the same route, although foundation of Muslim Sultanate in Kashmir in 1340 C.E also softened the way for Islam in Kashmir but it is an established fact that the spread of Islam in Kashmir was a gradual process, and this process of Islamization was taken forward by consecutive sufi missionaries. Among the early leading Sufi missionaries from outside Kashmir especially Central Asia, include Sheikh Sharaf-ud-Din Suhrawardi, Syed Jalal-ud-Din Bukhari,Syed Hussian Simnani and the most influencial mystic scholar Syed Ali Hamadani, who due to his fundamental role in Islamisation of Kashmir is known as founder of Islam in Kashmir (Bani-i-Musalmani fil Kashmir). The legacy of Syed Ali Hamadani in Kashmir was taken forward by his worthy son Mir Muhammad Hamadani. The role of Mir Muhammad Hamadani is unique, as he founded great number of socio-religious and educational institutions in Kashmir which are still present in large numbers throughout Kashmir and are contributing to the development of socio-religious and educational awakening among Muslims of Kashmir. The most unique contribution of Mir Muhammad Hamadani among Central Asian missionaries is his role in reformation of local mystic order of Kashmir called Rishism. He recognized the local Rishis and their patron saint Sheikh Noor-ud-Din as part and parcel of mainstream Islamic Mysticism (Tasawuf). He instilled in them (Rishis) missionary zeal which fulfilled the language barrier gaps which were faced by Central Asian mystics in Kashmir. After his departure from Kashmir, it was these Rishis of Kashmir who took forward the mission of Islamisation to the grassroot level of Kashmir; they approached all the sections of society from royal courts to the local village peasants of Kashmir.

Notes and References

1. The first Muslim ruler of Kashmir was Sultan Sadr-ud-Din (before conversion to Islam Rinchana) who ruled for less than 4 years (1329-1323 C.E) and the Muslim Sultan was founded in 1340 by Sultan Shah Mir called Shah Mir dynasty which ruled for more than one century, but historians have mentioned presence of Muslims in Kashmir in 11th Century but after foundation of Muslim Sultanate there was a great flow of Central Asian Sufi missionaries who were warmly welcomed and respected by the Sultanates of Kashmir, for further study about advent of Islam in Kashmir see, Farooq Bukhari, Kashmir Mein Islam: Manzar Passi-i- Manzar,Ashraf Book Depot, Srinager, 2013, PP 1-30, Prof. Ashraf Wani, islam in Kashmir, Oriental Publishing House, Srinager, 2004, Sayyid Ali, Tarikh-e-Kashmir, English translation with historical analysisHistory of Kashmirby A.Q. Rafique, Gulshan Books, Srinager 2011

2. Syed Jalal-ud-Din visited Kashmir in 1347 C.E, Syed Taj-ud-Din Visited Kashmir in 1341 C.E and Syed Hussian Simnani came to Kashmir in 1371 C.E, For further study about advent of Islam in Kashmir before Muslim Sultanate, see Farooq Bukhari, ibid, Ashraf Wani, ibid, G.M.D. Sufi, Kashir: Being a history of Kashmir, Ali Mohd and sons, Srinager, 2008, Wali Muhammad, Tarikh-i-Awliya Jammu Kashmir, J&K Urdu Forum, Jammu,2013

3. For further study about his life and contribution see, Khilasat-ul-Manaqib by Noor-ud-Din Jaffar Badakshi, urdu translation with notes by Prof. Shams-ud-Din, Sheikh Usman and Sons Srinager, 2003, Syeda Ashraf  Zaffar, Syed Mir Ali Hamadani, Sheikh Usman and Sons Srinager, 2007,  Shams-Ud-Din Ahmad, Shah-i-Hamadan: Hayat Aur Karnamay, Haji Sheikh Ghulam Muhammad And Sons ,1995, Shah-i-Hamedan Mir Saiyed Ali Hamadani: His Life and Works, a collection of Papers of a Seminar held in Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi in 2001, Kanishka Publishers, Distributors, New Delhi,2003 Hayat Aamir Husaini, Religious Thought Of Mir Sayyid ‘Ali Hamadani, Jay Kay Books, Srinager, 2012

4. For further study about his Role see, Prof. Ishaq khan, Sufis of Kashmir, Gulshan Books, Srinager 2010, Ashraf Wani, ibid, Dr Altaf Hussain Yatoo, Islamization of Kashmir, Gulshan Books, Srinager, 2012,  Pir Hassan Quhami, Asrar ul Abrar Urdu Translation, Tazkira-e –Awliya-e-Kashmir by Peerzada Abdul khaliq Tahiri, Shiekh Usman And Sons, Srinager,2012, Khawaja Azam Didamari, Waqiat -e-Kashmir, Urdu Translation,  Dr Suriya Gull, Mir Sayyid ‘Ali Hamadani and Kubrawiyya Sufi Order in Kashmir, Wattan Publications, Srinager, 2003

5.  Kashmir Historians of medieval times like that of Khawaja Azam Didamari, Syed Ali and modern Historians like Prof. Ishaq Khan are of the view that Sayid Ali Hamadani came to Kashmir only ones while Historians like Hassan Quhami, Muhideen Miskeen and Muhibul Hassan are of the view that he  came thrice to Kashmir, Although it has been debatable issue among Historians, how many times he  actually came to Kashmir but all of the Historical Scholarship are unanimous that he stayed in Kashmir for less than 3 years but still in this short span of time he played fundamental role in spread of Islam in Kashmir and for that reason he has been given  the title of Bani-I-Musalmani fil Kashmir (founder of Islam in Kashmir), as for as the famous Sanskrit Chroniclers of Medieval times like Kalhana, Jonaraja, Srivara are concerned, unfortunately due to their religious bias, they have not mentioned anything about the visits and works of Syed Ali Hamadani in Kashmir. For further study see Khawaja Muhammad Azam Didamari,Waqiat-e-Kashmir,Urdu translation by Prof. Shamas-ud-Din Ahmad, Jammu and Kashmir Islamic Reseach Center, Srinager, 2001, Abdul Wahab Nurri,Futuhat-e-Kubravi, Pir Hassan,Tarikh-e-Hassan,Ishaq khan ibid,  Ashraf Wani ibid,A.Q Rafiqui ibid, G.M.D. Sufi, Islamic Culture in Kashmir, Capital Publishing House, New Delhi,1996

6.  Dr. Syed Farooq Bukhari, Hayat-e-Mir Muhammad Hamadani, Ashraf Book Depot  Srinager, 1997, pp 4-6

7. Anonmous, Baharistan-i-Shahi, English translation by K.N. Pandit, http://ikashmir.net/baharistan/index.html, pp 52

10.  Sayyid Ali Hamadani, Dhakhirat-al-Muluk urdu Translation by Prof. Shams-ud-Din Ahmad,                Vol. 1, p 196, Ashraf Wani, Ibid, pp 60
11.  Jonaraja, Rajtarangini via  Altaf Yatoo, Islamization of Kashmir, pp 89
12. For further study see, Ashraf wani, Islam in Kashmir. Ishaq Khan, Kashmirs Transition To    Islam: Role of Muslim Rishis, Gulshan Books Srinager,2005

13.  Ashraf Wani, ibid 204,205

14. Muhibul Hassan, Kashmir under Sultans, Gulshan Publishers Srinager 2002, pp. 66
15. Although It is an critical and somehow controversial issue as both Sanskrit Chroniclers and Persian Hagiographers have adopted extremes about the Iconoclastic activities of Sultan Sikander and His Commander in Chief Saif-ud-Din but some modern Historians have Critically Examinedall the Sources and historical evidences of presence of Hindu Temples during various periods of Kashmir History after Sultan Sikander’s rule, For further study see Asrhaf Wani, ibid 114-123, Ishaq Khan, Kashmirs Transition to Islam, ibid 80-82, A.Q. Rafique, ibid 110, Muhibul Hassan, ibid 66

16.Anonmous, Baharistan-i-Shahi, English Translation by K.N. Pandit, http://ikashmir.net/baharistan/index.html, pp 52

17. Ashraf wani.Islam in Kashmir, pp 167 via Sayyid Ali, Tarikh-I-Kashmir

18.  Farooq Bukhari. Hayat-e-Mir Muhammad Hamadani, Ashraf Book Depot, Srinager, 1997,  Bashar Bashir,Mir Muhammad Hamadani in Awliya e Kashmir, Jammu and Kashmir Cultural Academy, 1997

19. Abdul Qayoom Rafiqi, Sufism in Kashmir, Gulshan Books, Srinager,2011

20. Farooq Bukhari, ibid 17

21. Altaf  Yatoo,Islamization of Kashmir, ibid 89
22. Dr Farooq Bukhari, Ulema-i-Kashmir Ka Shandar Mazi, Ashraf Book Depot, Srinager, pp 72-73, Famous Sufi Scholars of Medieval Kashmir like, Baba Dawood Mishkati, Haider Malik Chadoora, Baba Dawood Khaki has quoted his Books, via Farooq Bukhari, Hayat-i-Mir Muhamad Hamadani, pp 19-20
23. Khanqah is a Persian word meaning a holy place of worship for Muslims with a prayer hall for prayer (Salaat) and with residential quarters for guests, pilgrims and tourists. It is a building designed specifically for Sufi gatherings for spiritual retreat and character reformation, and often served as hospices for travelers and Islamic students.
24. The word Rishi is of Sanskrit origin, meaning a singer of hymns, an inspired poet or sage, The Rishi tradition in  Kashmir has a long history, dating as far back to pre-Vedic times but it was after great efforts of Sheikh Noor-ud-Din who was influenced by Central Asian Mystics Sayid Ali Hamadani and his son Mir Muhammad Hamadani, Sheikh Noor-ud-DinIslamized Rishi Tradition of Kashmir, For further study about History of Rishi tradition and its Islamization see Rysh Wa’ar: The Valley of Saints by Manzoor Fazili, Gulshan Books Srinager,2015,pp 7-46, Ishaq khan, ibid pp 37-60, Mystic Traditions of Kashmir by Iqbal Ahmad, Gulshan Books Srinager, 2011, Shiraza,, Sheikh-ul-Alam number, 1978, J&K Cultural academy Srinager, vol.17, no.3
25. Farooq Bukhari, ibid 12-13, He has quoted the Waqaf-Nama Of the Khanqah in which special guidance are given regarding maintenance and administration of Khanqah, it speaks about how the special care of not only devotes and disciples was taken into special consideration but also special  arrangements forpoor’s, needy and travelers were made without any kind of discrimination.
26. Farooq Bukhari, ibid pp 19, via Asrar ul Abrar of Baba Dawood Mishkati
27. Author has personally visited the Jamia and collected the requisite information as regards its structural layout and has corrobated the information thus gathered with the historical sources (Kutub-i-Tarikh).A marble stone placed in one of walls of Jamia upon which valuable information about history of Jamia has been inscribed. Famous modern historian of Kashmir,G.M.D. Sufi, has also mentioned history and architectural uniqueness of Jamia in his book Kashir: being history of Kashmir, vol. 2nd , pp 512-514
28. Farooq Bukhari ibid. pp 9,10
29. Khat-i-irshad is a kind of Authority letter given by a Sufi Master (Murshid) to his most prime and abledisciple(Mureed). By virtue of this authority letter he(the Murreed) acquires the requisite authority toguide and initiate other disciples in that very Sufi order of his Master (Murshid).It is also known as Khilafat-nama(document of spiritual Vice-regency) in the Sufi terminology. For further study about Sufism and Sufi terminology, see Kashf al-Mahjub, of Ali Hujwari, English translation, R.A. Nicholson, Adam Publishers, New Delhi, 2011, The Encyclopedia of Islamic Spirituality edited by S.H. Nasr, Suhail Academy Lahore, 2005

30. Originally in Arabic the  Translation has been quoted from,  Prof. Ishaq Khan’s, Kashmir’s Transition to Islam: role of Muslim rishis, pp 257

31.  A copy of Khat-i-irshad is preserved in Khanqah-e-Muala Srinager and Prof. Ishaq Khan has quoted and translated it into English  in his book Kashmir’s  transition to Islam: Role of Muslim Rishispp 252-257  and has also highlighted its historical importance in the Muslim history of Kashmir

32.Scholars and historians of Kashmir have differences about the number of years Mir Muhammad Hamadani  stayed in Kashmir but they are unanimous that he stayed in Kashmir for at least 12 years and during his stay in Kashmir he visited all the corners of  Kashmir and interacted with all the sections of society, his interaction with the local mystics has been one of the outstanding events in history of Muslims in Kashmir

33. For further study about socio-religious contribution of Rishi Movement in Kashmir, see Noor Nama of Baba Nasib translated into Urdu by Prof Margoob Banhali, Markaz-i-Noor, University of Kashmir, Prof. Ishaq khan’s, Kashmirs Transition to Islam, Alamdar-i-Kashmir: Standard Bearer patron-Saint of Kashmir by M. Amin Pandit, Gulshan Books Srinager 2011, Alamdar edited by Ghulam Nabi Gowhar, Gulshan Publishers Srinager, 1997, Burj-i-Noor: Hayat aur Halat-i-Sheikh-ul-alam, Cultural Academy Srinager, 1991

34. Abul Fazal, Ain-i-Akhbari, via Shafi Ahmad Qadari, Kashmiri Sufism, Gulshan Books Srinager, 2002, pp 75


Muhammad Shafi Bhat, Doctoral Fellow, Shah-i-Hawadan Institute of Islamic Studies, University of Kashmir, Srinagar
Email ID: bhatshafi11@gmail.com


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