BY HAROON RASHID BHAT
The bond that exists between the Murshid (Spiritual mentor) and the Mureed (Disciple) is so subtle and so delicate that only a few persons can understand its real essence. This sacred bond is interconnected with a lot of love, respect, and emotions. We have plenty of examples in Sufi traditions whereby a disciple expresses his deep attachment with his Murshid by composing poems or prose in favor of his Murshid.
In this connection, when we study the biography of Hazrat Sultan-Ul- Arifeen Sheikh Hamza Makhdoom RA, we came to know that two of his prominent disciples Baba Dawood Kakhi RA and Mir Baba Hyder Tulmili RA sustained this legacy and produced two valuable works that include Virdul Murideen and Hidyatul- Mukhliseen in which they mentioned the spiritual stature of their mentor. It is the accepted fact that the former one ( Virdul- Murideen) gained popularity, it has been published, translated, debated, and discussed widely. Even the researcher scholars having different subject backgrounds have been using it as a reference for their research work. On the other hand, Hidayatul Mukhliseen by Mir Baba Hyder Tulmali remained out-of-focus so far. Though many renowned historians like Mohammad Azem Dedmari, Peer Hasan Shah Khuhami did mention its name with a brief introduction in their respective historical accounts- Waqati Kashmir and Tawareek- Hasan.
Markaz-i-Noor, Centre for Sheikh-ul-Alam Studies; University of Kashmir organized a two-day seminar titled “Sheikh Hamza Makhdoom and his Contribution towards Kashmiri Society” on May 19 and 20- 2015. The seminar aimed at highlighting the life and contribution of Sheikh Hamza Makhdoom in the medieval era of Kashmir and its relevance in contemporary times. On that very occasion, the research paper titled, “Critical Analysis of Hidayatul Mukhliseen by Mir Syed Hyder Tulmuli,” was authored by Dr. Rukaya Syeda and presented by Dr. Mohammad Yusuf. The research paper critically analyzed the various dimensions of Hidayatul Mukhliseen and positively brought to the front Mir Syed Hyder Tulmuli’s style and statements regarding the spiritual excellence of Makhdoom Sahab. This particular manuscript authored by Mir Sahab is unpublished. Its limited original manuscript is available in Persian. One of the admires of Sufism namely Moulana Ghulam Rasool Farooqi popularly known by his pen name “Hilal Kashmiri” from Batwin Ganderbal translated this piece of work into Urdu. Fortunately, a few months back one of comrade namely Nisar Ahamad Bhat from Tulmula made this piece available to me. I read it from the first page to the last and found it very informative, interesting, and deeply interwoven with spiritual thoughts and experiences.
Baba Hyder Tulmuli has decorated the content into five chapters. The first chapter deliberated upon the qualities that the Murshid should have. The second chapter deals with the relevance of actions (Ebada) with a particular timing. The third one is emphasizing the importance of Zikir-Azkar (The repetition of the holy word or verse). The fourth is illuminating the Sufi Traditions (Tasawuf). The fifth one is fully dedicated to Mehboob-Ul-Alam RA. In this particular chapter, he described the spiritual highness of his Murshid and his relation with his disciples. He also shared his spiritual experiences that he had acquired while meeting, interacting discussing, and debating with the other colleagues, mentioned various episodes that are possessed with Miracles. He also attributed numerous titles to his Murshid. Each one is highlighting both manifested and concealed qualities of Sheikh Hamza Mukdoom RA. It shows his intimacy and affection with his Murshid.
At the outset of the manuscript, there is a brief description of his life. According to that Mir Baba Hyder RA was a Najeeb-u- Tarafaen Syed i.e. The decedent of Prophet SAW from both his parents. There is also the mention of the episode that motivated and attracted Mir sahib towards his Murshid Kamil.
He said, “I was fifteen years old when I saw a dream in which I was the beautiful appearance of the beloved prophet Mohammad SAW accompanied with the four Khalifas in a Mosque. One of the personalities sitting there called me for Wuzu (Ablution). I did Wuzu properly. Beloved Prophet SAW presented him a cloak and directed him to present the same to me. While doing so, the beloved prophet SAW was repeatedly addressing those lines to him. “He is my son, enlighten him with the knowledge of Alim Zahir and Alim Batin (manifested and hidden Knowledge)” The personality who was unknown to me till that time covered my body with that robe, kissed my hand. Later, he introduced himself and addressed me “O! My son, “I am from Kashmir and my name is Sheikh Hamza Mukdoom” In the meantime, I woke up, narrated the whole dream to my Uncle who was my guide and caretaker as I was the parentless child at that time. As my uncle had a deep emotional attachment with me, he did not allow me to carry on that journey to Kashmir. But my anxiety grew with each passing day to give the practical shape to my dream. It was Friday, I attended the Congregational Prayer then moved towards the nearby Jungle, weeping and crying. Surprisingly, my eyes glimpsed the good-looking person, sitting on the horse along with a huge army behind him marching towards me. In the first instance, I thought it may be the king of jinns who came there for hunting. But When I enquired about that strange scene, one of the persons informed me that he was Sultan Sheikh Hamza Kashmiri. After a brief interval, he called me and said, “O! My son, I am the same person whom you viewed in the dream. If you wish you can come along with me just now without any exertion but it would favor you the best spiritual interests subjected to the condition that you cover this distance from Gujrat to Kashmir physically. Acted upon the advice of my beloved Murshid, I once again requested my uncle, motivated him and finally, he permitted me. And without wasting any time, I started my journey towards my destination i.e Kashmir”.
The steep landscapes of Kashmir or the harsh weather conditions or any other worldly barriers never became a hurdle for his arrival to Kashmir. It reflects his keenness, commitment, and determination for the divine world.
After the preliminary spiritual training that he received under the superb guidance of Sheikh Hamza Mukdoom RA, he was given the charge of Praghana Lar. There he used to provide religious and spiritual guidance to the people residing within the jurisdiction of that area.
Mir Sahab besides rendered his duties with utmost care and sincerity, earned his livelihood by cultivating the piece of land available at Tulmula Ganderbal which is still known as “Mir Subun Zameen” He stayed there till his last breath. During those times, Tulmula became the focus of attraction for spiritual lovers. Mukdoom Sahab RA deputed many of his disciples to Tulmula to avail the spiritual benefits from Mir Sahab. There are various appellations associated with her name like Mir Baba Hyder Tulmuli, Mir Baba Hyder Lari, Mir Sahab Tulmuli, Faqeer Mir Hyder Gujrati, etc. As usual, his annual day is celebrated on the seventh Muharamul-Haram.
Keeping the historical, literary, and spiritual importance of his contributions in view, there is a need to do research regarding his overall life that will not only reveal the spiritual connections between Kashmir with that of the rest of the world but also can prove a vital asset in the field Sufi literature.
Haroon Rashid Bhat is a teacher by profession presently posted at Ganderbal, can be mailed at