Wednesday, 27 April 2011

The Mughals and the Prophetic Hair

From the magazine Islamic Voices is an excellent article by Dr Pirzada Mohammad Amin (someone with whom I corresponded with and who did his dissertation on "Beliefs, Customs and Practices - A Case Study of Hazratbal") on how the Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb dealt with a Hair of the Prophet, the miracles reported and how it came to reside in the famous Hazratbal Mosque.
A more recent and detailed article is found at his dissertation here with many references and more incidents (including the attempted dishonour to a Hair by a leader called Azad Khan) is found at:
The magazine article is found here:

"Of the numerous Muslim shrines in the Kashmir valley, Hazratbal is undoubtedly the most revered and sacred, being the repository of the hair of the Prophet (Pbuh), the Mo-i-Muqaddas. This shrine has for long been a spiritual and religious centre for the Muslims of Kashmir and a holy place for their co-religionists elsewhere in the world.

The exact historical sources reveal that the holy relic enshrined at Hazratbal was brought to Kashmir towards the end of the seventeenth century A.D. The eighteenth century [and seventeenth century] historians, Mirza Qalandar Baig [died 1700 CE and was a contemporary], in his Hujjat-i-Qasira, and Muhammad Azam Didamari, in his Waqiat-i-Kashmir, write that the holy relic was in the possession of one Hazrat Sayyed Abdullah, a descendant of the Prophet (Pbuh), a trustee of the holy shrine of Medina. The holy relic was originally in the custody of Hazrat Imam Hussain (AS), and has been in herited through successive generations of the Prophet’s family by him. In 1044 AH, corresponding to 1635 A.D., Sayyed Abdullah lost his trusteeship of the holy shrine in Medina due to a conflict over the custodianship with his paternal cousin, Hazrat Sayyed Hashim. The feud took an ugly turn, as a result of which the matter was brought to the notice of the Sultan of the Ottoman Empire, who ordered the governor of Medina to bring Sayyed Abdullah before the royal court. On not complying with the orders of the Sultan, Sayyed Abdullah’s property was confiscated and he was forced to leave Medina.
Following this, Sayyed Abdullah left for India via Basra, and after travelling for over two years, arrived in Bijapur in the Deccan in 1046 A.H., corresponding to 1637 A.D. Sayyed Abdullah was in possession of three holy relics-the sacred hair of the Prophet (Pbuh), the turban sharif of the Prophet (Pbuh) and the saddle of Hazrat Imam Ali’s horse. Sayyed Abdullah’s erstwhile position of having been a trustee of the holy shrine at Medina and the custodian of the holy relics impressed the ruler of Bijapur, who granted a fief in his favour. After having spent twenty three years in exile in Bijapur, Sayyed Abdullah died, and his son, Sayyed Hamid became the custodian of the holy relics.
In 1658, the Mughal Emperor Shah Jehan was taken ill, which led to a power struggle among his sons Dara Shikoh, Murad Baksh and Arurangzeb. Finally, Aurangzeb took the reigns of the Empire in his hands. Since during the power struggle Sayyed Abdullah was found sympathetic towards Dara Shikoh, Aurangzeb confiscated his estate and also deprived him of the other facilities provided by the previous regime to him. In order to recover his estate, sayyed Hamid went to Shajehanabad, as Delhi was called in those days, but it took a long time for him to get his estate restored. Consequently, he faced a great financial hardship. History has it that at this time a Kashmiri trader by the name of khwaja Nuruddin Ashawari had come to know that a descendant of the Prophet (Pbuh) was in Delhi, and out of reverence he went there to meet him. Ashawari learnt that Sayyed Hamid was in acute financial distress, and extended a large sum of money to him.
It is said that once Ashawari went to meet Sayyed Hamid. Coincidentally, that day was being commemorated as Miraj-un-Nabi, and Sayyed Hamid was displaying the holy relics to his family. Ashawari, too, got to have a glimpse of them. Some days later, Ashawari requested Sayyed Hamid that one of the holy relics be given to him so that it could be taken to Kashmir for the spiritual benefit of his countrymen. Sayyed Hamid replied that Ashawari was not fit for this ‘crown’, because he was a trader and so could not possibly maintain its sanctity. On the same night, however, it is said that the holy Prophet (Pbuh) appeared in a dream to Sayyed Hamid, directing him to accede to Ashawari’s request. The next morning Sayyed Hamid informed Ashawari about the dream, and asked him to choose one of the three relics in his possession so that the orders of the Prophet (Pbuh) were carried out. It is said that the sacred hair was given to Ashawari along with its khadim, Maidanish, who had been in charge of the relics right from Medina. In return for this, Ashawari offered precious gifts and a large some of money to the Sayyed.
On acquiring the sacred hair, Ashawari left along with the holy relic for Kashmir via Lahore. In the meantime, news reached Aurangzeb that Ashawari was in the possession of the holy relic. Aurangzeb ordered that the holy relic be brought to the royal court along with Ashawari. The emperor took the holy relic from Ashawari, and sought the confirmation of its authenticity from his spiritual guide, Hazrat Abu Saleh. After having tested the authenticity of the holy relic, Abu Saleh declared that the sacred hair was indeed that of the Prophet (Pbuh). Apart from this, Aurangzeb made other tests to confirm its authenticity. He exposed the sacred hair to sunlight but it did not cast a shadow on the earth. He then exposed it to fire, but there was no effect on it. Finally, the sacred hair was placed on a sheet of paper laced with honey, but not a single insect touched it [related also by Mirza Qalandar Baig]. Satisfied with its genuineness, Aurangzeb ordered that the holy relic be enshrined in Ajmer Sharif, at the dargah of Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti.
In the meantime, it said, Aurangzeb had a dream in which the Prophet (Pbuh) appeared and ordered him to return the holy relic to Ashawari. There upon, a royal edict was issued to produce Ashawari before the court. However, in the meantime, Ashawari had passed away, dying out of grief and shock at being dispossessed of the relic. In his place, Maidanish, the Khadim of the relic, went to the royal court informing Aurangzeb that before Ashawari died he had expressed his wish that he be buried wherever the holy relic was enshrined. Aurangzeb then decreed that the holy relic be taken to Kashmir under state arrangements and enshrined there and that Ashwari’s body be also taken along and buried in the vicinity of the shrine containing the holy relic. This is how the holy relic made its arrival in Kashmir.
Mirza Qalandar Baig, while expressing his joy on the arrival of the holy relic in Kashmir, writes that ‘Kashmir Medina bashud as Mo-i-Nabi’ (Kashmir has become the second Medina by the arrival of the sacred hair of the Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh). To begin with, the Mo-i-Muqaddas was kept in the Khanqah of Khwaja Moinuddin Naqshbandi (t) in Srinagar. However, owing to the huge rush of pilgrims which caused the death of several in a stampede, the then Mughal governor, Fazil Khan, convened a meeting of leading ulama and other citizens of Srinagar in which a decision was taken to shift the holy relic to the Bagh-i-Sadiq Khan, situated on the western banks of the Dal lake, as Hazratbal was known in those days. It was enshrined here in a pavilion built by the Mughal noble, Sadiq Khan.
From then to this day Hazratbal has seen many vicissitudes of fortune. At one time, the shrine was an important centre of Islamic learning. It had a large madrasa attached to it as well as a library which boasted one of the richest collections of Islamic texts and manuscripts in Kashmir. These, however, were destroyed in a devastating fire in 1993. Today, the Medinat-ul-Ulum madrasa of Hazratbal is a pale shadow of its former self. It has less than twenty students on its rolls, and the standard of education imparted therein is pitiable. One wishes that the Auqaf Trust, with the vast funds at its disposal, would turn its attention to addressing this pathetic situation and thereby help to make Hazratbal a leading centre of Islamic learning in Kashmir."

Brief history of the Hairs

A PDF document containing a brief history of the Prophet Muhammed's (Sallalahu alaihi wa sallam) Hairs is found at:

It is written by Dr Mohamed M Begg of De Montford University, Leicester.
He commented that "Many of the facts mentioned in my work are by countless witnesses.  Therefore, for us Muslims it is enough to go along with well recorded events by responsible people."

Hairs of the Prophet and their miraculous qualities

A kind brother made a very informative article. I myself have sent people to verify certain claims about the miracles and spoke to some people about them being tested. One brother tested the case about the Hairs of the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) not having a shadow a number of times and found no shadow. I also spoke to a sheikh who said that it has been tested and verified to the claim. Furthermore I spoke to a trustworthy brother who has a Hair of the Prophet and said that it grows and has clearly noticed it grow, whilst a relative of mine saw the hair at different times and noticed it grow. I spoke to a friend who is a student of knowledge, and he carried out his test on the shadow and confirmed my results that the Holy Prophet's Hairs have no shadow. Note from the comments I pasted below, it is upto Allah to decide which hairs show which miracles, so it is not certain that all the hairs grow or don't have a shadow, but the fact is that at least some do grow and don't have shadows and that is proven from many reliable sources and witnesses. One incident for example where it split is in Ghamkul Shariff Mosque in Birmingham recently when many people were there. And the way science has to work is not by rejecting data that doesn't fit its theories, but by actually seeing and evaluating the data. Once such data cannot be reconciled by the theories in question, then a paradigm shift in the field often happens (see Kuhn's "Scientific Revolutions"). In this case insha'Allah it will be accepted by scientific theories that the materialism and atheistic assumptions that they've loaded in their theories are wrong and that we must accept that things are ultimately in the Hands of Allah, which leads to miracles. The article is pasted here with historical and scholarly and reliable references:صلى-الله-عليه-و-سلم-is-miraculous/

A brief study I have made on the subject revealed many miraculous facts on Hair of Rasoolullah (صلى الله عليه و سلم).
  • It won’t decay by passage of time.
  • It grows as time passes.
  • It splits into multiples.
  • It moves by itself once kept in Majlis al Dikr (Gathering to remember Allah).
  • It often glows in dark.
Respected scholar Yousuf  Ismail  Yousuf al Nabhani (يوسف اسماعيل النبهاني) from Palestine (1849–1932) mentions in his book ‘Jawahir al Bihar’ (جواهر البحار في فضائل النبي المختار) narration from Great Scholar Abd al-Ghani al-Nabulsi ( عبد الغني النابلسي رضي الله عنه). Nabulsi (1641 – 1731), a Damascus bound scholar during his visit to Madinah Shareef met a scholar from India named Gulam Muhammad.
This Indian scholar used to read them ‘’Futoohat al Malakiyyah’ (فتوحات الملكية) authored by Great Shaikh Muhyidhin al Arabi (رضي الله عنه). He explained on availability of many Sacred Hairs in India and its supernatural behaviors. Those hairs are exhibited during 9th of month Rabiul Awwal every year for public to have blessings. The Indian scholar explained that some hairs will move by self and he had witnessed it. Some hairs grow and some of them offshoot new hairs.
Some historians reported that a rightful Indian king Nooruddin al Shaheed had a collection of Sacred Hairs in his stock. He made a ‘wasiyah’ (will letter) to keep the Hairs in his eyes after his death and was done so.
Another incident about ‘Sacred Hair’ is narrated by great Indian saint Shah Waliullah Muhaddith Dehlavi (رضي الله عنه) (1703 – 1762) in his book ‘Hirz al Thameen fi Mubasharaatin Nabiyil Ameen’. His father told that once he was ill and he saw Rasoolullah (صلى الله عليه و سلم) in dream. He explained about his illness to Rasoolullah (صلى الله عليه و سلم) and He (صلى الله عليه و سلم) found a cure for it and from His (صلى الله عليه و سلم) blessed beard left two hairs. He instantly recovered and when woke up, both the blessed hairs were in his hand. Shah Waliullah writes, “My father gave me one from the blessed hairs.”
Recently enough, Shaikh Ahmad Muhammad Al Khazraji (طول الله عمره), a descendant from Khazraj tribe of Madinah in Abu Dhabi have a healthy collection of many ‘Sacred Hairs’ having fail proof authentic certificate. I have posted an article before on it Sacred Hair of Rasoolullah (صلى الله عليه و سلم), a precious collection!
He exhibits the Blessed Relic to public on 23rd night of Ramadan. One respected brother has posted the news here شعرات من رأس الحبيب عليه السلام. He has mentioned the miraculous behavior of the Hair growing by itself.
One young Indian scholar now doing his doctorate in Al Azhar University has recounted explanations given by Shaikh Ahmad Muhammad Al Khazraji during his recent visit to him. The Shaikh tells that some hairs in his collection grow 1.7 to 2.5% in a year.
Interestingly enough he has noticed new hairs being added up in his collection. Curious to know, he has shown the new hairs to fire to check whether it burns. No, it has surpassed the test ensuring that it was derived from the original hair of Rasoolullah (صلى الله عليه و سلم)! He also noticed some hairs moving by itself upon kept in Majlis al Dikr (مجلس الذكر) and some glowing in dark.
Fitting to their unparalleled privilege, government of U.A.E has recently published stamps as a respect to his father Muhammad Al Khazraji (رحمة الله عليه). His father had served as Minister of Endowments and Islamic Affairs in U.A.E.
It is wonderful, isn’t it? Those who know the meaning of Prophetic Miracle won’t need more to believe it. But others who might try to measure with physical scales will find it hard to digest. According to Shaikh Abd al-Ghani al-Nabulsi, Allah has granted special life pattern to parts belonging to Rasoolullah (صلى الله عليه و سلم).
There were many miracles shown by Rasoolullah (صلى الله عليه و سلم) to his people only to be denied by many. One of them is  the moon splitting incident as Rasoolullah (صلى الله عليه و سلم) had shown full moon split and separated to two parts of the horizon. Many people in Makkah who watched it by own eyes didn’t believe it. Surprisingly a king from India saw it and set his sail to Makkah to embrace Islam. (Check Tajudhin Al Hindi (Raliya Allahu Anhu for details).
Similarly another great miracle of Rasoolullah (صلى الله عليه و سلم) Al Isra’ wal Mieraj (الاسراء و المعراج) was denied and scrutinized by Makkah infidels. But, see the Great Sahabi Abu Bakr al Siddiq (رضي الله عنه) accepted it without a rethink. It is ‘Eeman’, the real faith which many fail to posses.
Now the onus is on us. Believing it or not is one’s own choice. But don’t bully it by posting and circulating unnecessary emails which will tarnish image of our Ummah in public. If one can’t digest it, better for him to keep quite.

Purpose of blog


This blog comes about due to the lack of a website on the internet being dedicated to the Hairs of the Noble Prophet Muhammed (Sallalahu alaihi wa sallam). I feel that there is a lot of information that is not known about such blessed Hairs, especially their miracles. Thus there is a lot of ignorance amongst many Muslims about them and this needs to be countered by facts and evidences and will be propounded here insha'Allah.