Scientific, Spiritual and Intellectual significance of ‘Awradi Fathia’
BY: RAYEES AHMAD KUMAR
The great Islamic preacher, poet and scholar Hazrat Mir Syed Ali Hamadani (RA)- 1314–1384- was born in Hamadan- then a great center of Islamic knowledge- and mastered all the available knowledge in theology, philosophy, metaphysics and Sufism and travelled extensively seeking knowledge and practicing spiritualism, till he became a scholar of repute, a mystic and a perfect saint.
He spent his life in propagating Islam and undertook several extensive tours through difficult terrains and over hazardous routes and played a major role in spreading Islam in Kashmir. He influenced the culture of Kashmir valley and transformed the society at large. He is known by several titles including Shah-e-Hamadan (King of Hamadan), and Amir-I- Kabir (the Great Commander). He came to Kashmir three times i.e. in 774 AH/1372 AD, 781 AH/ 1378 AD and 785 AH/ 1383 AD. The Muslims of Kashmir owe a great debt of gratitude to this luminary of Islam for bringing them, en-masse, within the fold of Islam. He is lovingly known as the founder of Islam (Baniay-Islam) in Kashmir.
Hazrat Amir Kabir Mir Syed Ali Hamadani (RA) has authored many books and pamphlets in Arabic and Persian languages, which lay stress on the recognition of the unity of God and the worship of One God, His remembrance and reflection is also full of sublime teachings and guidance on mystic experiences, and Aurad-I-Fathia is one of these priceless compositions, concise primer, describing the unity and attributes of ALLAH (SWT) in a grand style. The Awradh is an anthology of Quranic verses and the centrality of monotheism in Islam. A large part of the Awradh also consists of the prophet’s sayings, the names of Allah and expressions of gratitude and praise for Allah.
Awradh is an unparalleled and precious gift of Mir Syed Ali Hamadani (RA) for Muslims in general and for Kashmiri’s in particular and can be considered as a book of Tawheed. Its themes are the reflection of Tawheed proved by Quran and sunnah and a bright proof of Hamadani’s mission fundamentally based upon monotheism. If we are asked to say in a single word the theme of Awradi Fathiya, unhesitatingly we can say it is Tawheed. The Tawheed described here is the manifestation of Islamic Tawheed in a simple and effective manner, so that common masses of Kashmir would understand it and follow accordingly.
“In the name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful
I seek forgiveness from the great Allah.
Besides whom none is worthy for being worshipped, The Living, The Eternal. I turn to Him and seek repentance from Him.
O’ Allah! You are the Author of Peace and from You springs Peace and towards you is Peace. Keep me my Lord in Peace and grant me entrance in the Abode of Peace. Glory to Thee my Lord and Exalted are Thou, The Lord of Majesty and Bounty.
O’ Allah! Such Praise is due to you as will cover all Thy Bounties and will cover Your further Bounties. I am full of praise for all Your kindness of which I am aware and of which I am not aware and of all your gifts of which I am aware and of which I am not aware and I am grateful in all conditions”.
From these opening lines of Awradh we come to observe that it is full of Allah’s praise, expression of gratitude for his innumerable bounties. These lines lay strong recommendation for seeking forgiveness from almighty for one’s sins. From Quranic teachings and authentic hadith, seeking forgiveness is repeatedly recommended for a believer. So in this context, Mir Syed Ali Hamadani too has laid an emphasis in attaining believer’s virtues. Praising Allah and expressing gratitude is no less than a sacred prayer for a pious Muslim. So Awrad is the noblest panacea to purify one’s soul.
In Awradh, Mir Syed Ali Hamadani (RA) has described Allah’s greatness and powers. Indeed when a believer comes to know the powers and the lordship of Allah, instead of seeking forgiveness and perfect solutions for his miseries from the gates of worldly lords, he straightaway communicates with the eternal lord through the prayers. In this sense we see that he has awakened the believers and expected good deeds from them to succeed in both this world and hereafter.
Furthermore, in the text of Awradh-the pious words of wisdom compiled by this great saint, we get to know about the duties and the level of the way we must be obedient to our lord and express the gratitude for his bounties. Great emphasis is laid on seeking forgiveness from Almighty and it is described as the gateway of relief and happiness. Whenever one is in distress start reciting it and Insha Allah it will take you out of your anxiety and will put you in a peaceful situation and usher happiness. Istighfar (seeking forgiveness) removes anxiety and prayers are answered. It opens the door of sustenance, mercy, knowledge, productivity and relief.
Gratitude is a crucial and significant aspect of the Islamic faith and in Awradi Fathia we find compilation of many Quranic verses seeking forgiveness from almighty Allah as well as expressing the gratitude or thankfulness to Almighty for his innumerable bounties. In this way we see that Awradh has intellectual, spiritual as well as scientific utility. It is the noblest of the gifts of Mir Syed Ali Hamadani (RA) for the people of Kashmir which is recited daily after dawn prayers as has been the routine for centuries. We need to spread the meaning of this precious gift among common masses so that the real message is understood. Our young generation, besides being unaware about the basics of Islamic fundamentals, is also unfamiliar about our glorious past and our rich religious heritage. They need to get acquainted with the contribution of legendary saints who travelled distant lands and enlightened us. Muslim Ummah in general and Kashmirs in particular are passing through difficult challenges and the emergence of many sects and ideologies as well as their poor understand causes great confusions. Sticking firmly and acting according to the teachings of Awradi Fathia can relieve us from the enormous mental burdens and challenges. Given the profundity of Awradh, one can say that it should be made into a mandatory read in our religious institutions for the fact that it not only gets us closer to Almighty and the faith of Islam but also the message and teachings are relevant for all times. May almighty Allah show us the right path of his Wali’s (friends). Aameen!
Author is a columnist, fiction writer and teaches at Govt Secondary School Anderwan Ganderbal.