From Sultan Bahoo to Sultan ul Ashiqeen
Khanqah Sultan ul Ashiqeen
Sultan Bahoo (ra) is a prominent Saint of the Qadri order which originates from the Holy Prophet (pbuh). It reached Sultan Bahoo through Ghaus e Azam Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani (ra). When it came to Sultan Bahoo, he propagated it in South East Asia as Sarwari Qadri order.
Present Imam of Sarwari Qadri order of Sultan Bahoo
Sultan ul Ashiqeen Sultan Mohammad Najib-ur-Rehman is the present Shaikh of the Sarwari Qadri order of Sultan Bahoo. He is in fact thirty-first (31st) perfect Shaikh of this mystic way.
From Sultan Bahoo to Sultan ul Ashiqeen
The leadership of this order reaches him through 6 successions from Sultan Bahoo as below:
- Sultan-ul-Arifeen Sultan Bahoo
- Sultan-ul-Tarikeen Sultan Sayyid Mohammad Abdullah Shah Madni Jilani
- Sultan-ul-Sabireen Sultan Pir Mohammad Abdul Ghafoor Shah Hashmi Qureshi
- Shahbaz-e-Arifaan Sultan Pir Sayyid Mohammad Bahadur Ali Shah Kazmi al-Mashhadi
- Sultan-ul-Auliya Sultan Mohammad Abdul Aziz
- Sultan-ul-Faqr VI Sultan Mohammad Asghar Ali
- Sultan-ul-Ashiqeen Sultan Mohammad Najib-ur-Rehman
Transference of Divine Trust
Sultan ul Ashiqeen is the supreme spiritual successor of Sultan ul Faqr VI Sultan Mohammad Asghar Ali who transferred the Divine Trust to him on 21st March 2002. He formally adorned the throne of Divine Guidance and Persuasion on 26th December 2003. He assumed this responsibility after the demise of his spiritual guide. Since then, by following the footsteps of Sultan Bahoo, he has worked tirelessly to spread the message of Faqr throughout the world.
Faqr – Teachings of Sultan Bahoo
It is prudent to elaborate the meaning of Faqr here. Sultan Bahoo has neither called his teachings mysticism nor spirituality, rather Sultan Bahoo titled them Faqr. Generally people think of Faqr as poverty, destitution and hard times. It literally means indigence but in spirituality and in particular, in the teachings of Sultan Bahoo it refers to the real purpose of our lives i.e. the path that makes one’s inward worthy of presence in the Mohammadan Assembly as well as the gnosis and vision of Allah Almighty. The Holy Prophet (pbuh) described Faqr as:
الفقر فخری والفقر منی
Meaning: Faqr is my pride and Faqr is from me.
Establishment of Khanqah and Tehreek Dawat-e-Faqr
In order to spread the message of Faqr throughout the world, Sultan ul Ashiqeen established Khanqah Sarwari Qadri on 23rd October 2009. On the same day, he announced establishment of Tehreek Dawat-e-Faqr.
Since its establishment, the Sarwari Qadri Khanqah has been operating successfully under the guidance of Sultan-ul-Ashiqeen. There are a number of different departments of the khanqah that are working to spread the teachings of Sultan Bahoo. One key part of propagating the message to common people is to produce quality literature. Under his guidance, this organisation has published numerous lectures, books and journals on Faqr. This material has been published both in printed format as well as on internet through websites and social media forums.
Revolution in Spirituality
The distinctive feature of Sultan-ul-Ashiqeen and his organisation has been that in addition to utilising the traditional mediums for spreading the message of Faqr to people and inviting them to the righteous path, he has very successfully and to full extent exploited all the latest information technology tools and platforms for this purpose which is a marvel in its own right.
There is hardly any social media forum where Tehreek Dawat-e-Faqr doesn’t have its presence. There are more than thirty four (34) independent websites on mysticism and Faqr, three different channels on YouTube, more than eighty pages and three TV channels on Facebook, Instagram and IGTV, Twitter, LinkdIn, Quora and many different communities on Reditt. Moreover, there is strong presence on Tumblr as well as the recently launched and emerging forums such as Likee and Tiktok for propagating the message of Sultan Bahoo worldwide. This provides an insight into Sultan ul Ashiqeen’s multi-talented and versatile personality. And the same is true for his organisation – Tehreek Dawat-e-Faqr.
Another testimony of Sultan ul Ashiqeen’s foresightedness and creativity is to allow seekers of Allah and lovers of Sultan Bahoo, to take online oath. This is a new dimension in mysticism. In the past, it was mandatory for seekers to meet the Shaikh or spiritual guide face to face at least once to become their disciple. However, in today’s fast paced world where people have very busy lives, it is not always possible for them to meet the Shaikh in person.
Thus, considering the constraints and challenges of today’s world, by allowing seekers to swear oath online, he has truly spread the beneficence of Faqr to the whole of humanity. His beneficence is beyond borders. It is undoubtedly a revolutionary step that will take Sultan Bahoo’s teachings of Faqr to new heights.
Over the past few years, Sultan-ul-Ashiqeen’s disciples and devotees have grown in numbers exponentially. The ever growing number of disciples and the expanding footprint of Tehreek Dawat-e-Faqr means the present Khanqah is not sufficient to cater to their requirements. It is also not large enough to hold the annual gatherings. Hence there is a requirement for a much bigger khanqah.
In view of this, Sultan ul Ashiqeen has laid foundation stone for Khanqah which is under construction in Ragilpur, Lahore. The new khanqah, named Khanqah Sultan ul Ashiqeen will be much bigger than the current khanqah when completed.
Role of Khanqah Sultan ul Ashiqeen in spreading Teachings of Sultan Bahoo
The Khanqah Sultan ul Ashiqeen is a purpose built facility that will serve as the head quarter for Tehreek Dawat-e-Faqr. It will play a key role in realising Tehreek’s aims and objectives and future expansion plans. Amongst many other great features, the Khanqah Sultan-ul-Ashiqeen will feature a grand mosque, library, computer lab, free kitchen and accommodation for devotees.