Late Mir Abdul Aziz Sahab association with Sufi shrines of Kakori

A mid-nineteenth century narrative of oral history

Gateway to the shrine, Pic source: Syed Abdul Mannan

Kakori , a small town is located fourteen kilometers north of Lucknow. It came up in the light of world history when the Indian freedom fighters snatched the British treasure by stopping the train at Kakori in 1925. Long before this incident, the place was famous as a syncretic hub for culture and literature. It was evolved under the patronage of Hazrat Shah Kazim Qalandar, a famous Sufi who established his Khanqah at Kakori in 18th Century. The legacy was further continued by his son Hazrat Shah Turab Ali Qalandar (R.A). Here, I would like to present a narrative that came to us in the form of an oral history. It’s a special affiliation of my grand ancestor Mir Abdul Aziz sahab with this Sufi Khanqah and that still connect our family with Kakori shrine almost more than one hundred fifty years later. Mir Abdul Aziz was a Syed and a native of Malihabad. He was the maternal grandfather (Nana) of my paternal grandfather (Dada), Syed Abdul Bari.  He was an expert in Binvat (staff play) and used to travel by pony (small horse). Due to this expertise, he had not only protected the people, but also the holy shrines of the vicinity. 

Shirine of Hazrat Shah Turab Ali Qalandar, Pic source: Syed Abdul Mannan

The Tombs & Khanqahs of Sufis (Saints) are considered as sacred places which are flooded by people of all faiths for seeking blessings & solace. But during the times of bitterness between the two main faiths in India, the situation got so intense that it did not stop with the taking of human lives, the looting and destruction of the personal properties. Even the Sufi dargahs and tombs were viciously attacked by miscreants. This event dated back to 19th century. It was the time of Urs (death anniversary of saint) ceremony at Kakori Sharif where the people from all faiths participated. But an unprecedented development occurred when dargah was surrounded by miscreants; and made hindrances in cooking of food (to be distributed among the zaireen (vistors)). There was no one in Kakori to take on those scoundrels. Sajjada Nasheen (Care takers)  of the Dargah was well acquainted with the bravery and expertise of Mir Abdul Aziz Malihabadi.  An immediate mayday was pronounced for Mir Abdul Aziz Malihabadi.

Dargah of Shah Kazim Qalandar, Pic source: Syed Abdul Mannan

Upon receiving this news, he rushed to Kakori from Syedwara in Malihabad. When reached, he saw that the Dargah was surrounded by a group of miscreants.  He immediately took his staff and drove off the miscreants from that place. From that day onwards, Mir Abdul Aziz sahab was awarded with the honor to look after the Dargah’s kitchen. This was how our special ancestral affiliation with Kakori had started. Mir Abdul Aziz sahab didn’t had any surviving male heirs. He had a student, named Mirza Ibrahim Beg – whom he later adopted as his son. Mirza Ibrahim Beg continued the legacy of Binvat that he learned from his master. Mirza Ibrahim Beg had two students whom he trained in Binvat. Their names are Pyare Mirza of Kakori and Syed Mohammad Sardar Alam (my father). After the demise of Mir Sahab, his adopted son Mirza Sahab looked after the kitchen of the Dargah. Mirza Ibrahim Beg, handed over the responsibility to the next heir i.e., my grandfather, Syed Abdul Bari. During his entire life he served the matbakh (Kitchen) with all devotion. Though, my grandfather served in Police Department but he never missed the honor which was assigned to his forefathers. My grandfather’s demise took place in March 1990, none of his heirs were able to carry the legacy, neither my father, (Syed Mohammad SardarAlam) nor my uncle, (Syed Shah Alam). In Kakori still the Binvat is remembered with name of Mir Abdul Aziz sahab.

PS: Oral history is the recording, conservation and interpretation of historical information, based on the personal experiences and opinions of the speaker. It may take the form of eye-witness evidence about the past that passed down over the years by word of mouth.   “Oral History” is the informal conversations about “the old days” among family members, neighbors. Unquestionably, most people throughout history have learned about the past through word of mouth. Moreover, for generations, history-conscious individuals have preserved others first hand accounts of the past for the record, often precisely at the moment when the historical actors themselves, and with them their memories, were about to pass from the scene.

Medical Education in Early Islamic Medicine: A Historical Perspective

Salient features

  • Translated ancient medical treatise from Greek, Persian & Indian sources
  • Pioneered the establishment of teaching hospitals
  • Kept record of the patient information 
  • Represented physicians from diverse ethnic & religious backgrounds
  • Started structured licensing of physicians
  • Provided training in basic medical sciences (Anatomy, Physiology, Pharmacology)
  • Structured clinical training
  • Draw medical ethics on Islamic values

Background:

With the growth of Islam in the seventh century, a quest for the scientific explorations ignited in the land of Saracens. Within the decades after the passing of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), the newly formed Caliphate witnessed a tremendous territorial expansion. By the end of the seventh century, its northern borders extend up to Trans-Oxonian provinces in Central Asia & Western borders stretched up to the of Berbers in the African continent. With the start of the eighth century, the Umayyad further expands its provinces in the Iberian Peninsula in West & Sindh on the Eastern flank. By the time when Abbasid ( a family that claimed to be descendants from Prophets Uncle) toppled Umayyad, the dominion of the Islamic empire covered three continents (Asia, Africa & Europe). The cities where once flourished the sciences of Greeks, Persian & other predecessors now became the part of the Islamic empire. Enriched with a multi-ethnic & multilingual population, the knowledge of old vessels were transmitted to the new world by Saracenic (Islamic) civilization.

“The blood stream of the old body, enriched with new experiences digested by the Arabs, was being transfused into a new vessel in Europe through the Moorish provinces of Spain and Sicily’

V.Gordon. Childe (1942), What happened in History

The work of prominent polymaths of the ancient Hellenic world such as Galen, Hippocrates, Dioscorides, & Rufus was translated in Arabic. For the centuries, the Arabic language became a lingua franca of scientific documentation. The eastern centers of Gondeshahpur (Persia) & provinces of Sindh provide a linguistic & scientific exchange with ancient Indian & Persian manuscripts.

Islamic Medicine 

In the golden ages of Islamic sciences (7th -13th CE), the medicine as a specialty witnessed stupendous evolution & reforms that were mainly built on ancient knowledge of Greek, Persian & Indian sources. In the early days, the Prophetic Hadith, “Search for knowledge, even in China”, a geographically distant place in medieval ages, served as an impetus for the early physicians & scholars to conduct research & explore the existing body of medical knowledge from diverse sources. Al-Tibb al-nabawi (Prophetic medicine), a traditional approach for the cure of diseases given by Prophet (PBUH), also formed the basis for approaching sickness, treatment & role of the hygiene in healing in early days of Islamic Medicine. Coming from the authentic narration, the Prophet (PBUH) emphasized the role of treatment in the following words: “Make use of medical treatment, for Allah has not made a disease without appointing a remedy for it, except one disease, namely old age.” This notion was well advanced of its time as we can find even six centuries later in 13th century Europe, the idea of treatment moved around witchcraft, luck, charm, & wrath of God. One of the significant accomplishments of early Islamic medicine was the establishment of hospitals & the foundation of structured medical education. This write-up will summarize the key features & contributions of Islamic medicine towards Medical Education.

Folio from an Arabic manuscript of Dioscorides, De Materia Medica 1229 Source: Wikiimages

Early Translators

Preparing Medicine from Honey: Folio from a dispersed manuscript of an Arabic translation of the Materia Medica of Dioscorides (detail), dated A.H. 621 / A.D. 1224. Calligrapher: ‘Abdullah ibn al-Fadl. Iraq, Baghdad or northern Jazira Source: Met Museum

Some of the pioneers in the scientific translations of medicine in the Islamic world belonged to the Aramaic speaking Assyrian Nestorian Christianity. Jurjis Ibn Bukhtishu was the director of the hospital in Gondeshapur from where the trained physicians served the court of the Abbasid caliphs. For several generations, the Bukhtishu family remained as the head physicians & director for the Gondeshapur hospital that served as a learning center for the training of physicians. Yuhanna Bukhtishu served as physicians to three consecutive Abbasid Caliphs Mamun, Al-Wathiq & Al-Mutawakil. Yūḥannā ibn Masawayh (Filius Mesuë), a Nestorian Christian was another legendary physician from Gondeshapur who was appointed at Baghdad. Ibn Masawayh (b 777-d 857 CE) was one of the earliest clinical teachers in the history of Islamic medicine by exposing his students to patients. Among his students, the most notable was Ḥunayn ibn Isḥāq, al-‘Ibādī who was credited to translate the compendium of Galen in Arabic & Syriac in thirty-four versions. The Latin translation “Isagoge” of his work Kitāb al-Masa’il fī al-ṭibb li-l-muta ‘allimīn (Questions on the medicine for beginners) formed the conceptual framework of medieval European curricula till the evolution of early modern medicine. When the Byzantine monarchs considered these Nestorian Christians as heretic due to their sectarian rift, they were not only acclimatized by Abbasid Caliphs but lead the scholarly learning centers of Medicine in Baghdad. Hunayn, a Nestorian Christian, was appointed as the head for the Baitul Hikma (House of Wisdom) by Abbasid Caliph Mamun.

“The spirit of the Bermicides was continued by al-Mamun, Harun’s successor on the Caliphal throne, who founded a new academy on the bank of Tigris in 832 CE: the Bait ul-Hikma, the ‘House of Wisdom’. Here, massive numbers of manuscripts from every conceivable field of learning were translated from Sanskrit, Greek, Syriac, Persian into Arabic Collection”.

Ranjit Hoskote, & Ilija Trojanow, (2012), Confluences: Forgotten Histories from East and West
13th century illustration depicting a public library in Baghdad, from the Maqamat Hariri. Compiled by Yahaya Al Wasiti in 1237 Source: Bibliotheque Nationale de France

Hospitals

A 13th Century hospital complex of Divrigi great mosque & hospital Pic source: Wikiimages

One of the most outstanding features of Islamic medicine was the establishment of hospitals. From antiquity, the medical centers were confined as an extension of temples where priests gave the treatment. It was an amalgamation of rituals, prayers & traditional. The mobile hospitals were evolved during the early days of Islam during the battle of the trench (Ghazwae Khandaq). It has reported that Caliph Umar established a center for the Christian lepers after the Syrian conquest. Ummayad Caliph Walid also established a Leprosarium in 707 CE at Damascus. The pre-Islamic medical center of Gondishapur (Persia) was upgraded by Ummayad’s & later Abbasid’s. The first independent bimaristan (hospital) of the Islamic era came in existence at Baghdad (786 CE) by the vizier of Abbasid Caliph Harun Rashid, Yahya Ibn Khalid Ibn Barmak. It was after his affiliation; the bimaristan became famous as Barmakid hospital. During heydays of the Barmiki family, the center flourished with scholarship & research. An archival Arabic account told us one Indian name as Ibn Dahan Al Hindi, who was appointed by Barmiki as administrator & also translated many Indian medical treatises in Arabic. By the start of the ninth century, the bimaristan established all across the cities of the Islamic world such as Al Qatai (Cairo) and Al Qayrawan (Capital of Tunisia). On the western flank of the Islamic world, the Iberian Peninsula that remained under the control of Umayyad Caliphs also witnessed a similar development in sciences & medicine. Cordoba, the capital of Moorish Spain, had almost fifty hospitals during 9th & 10th century with some of them reserved exclusively for the military while others served the purpose of teaching hospitals. The hospitals were financed & managed by government endowment (waqf). The treating physicians came from diverse ethnic & religious backgrounds. All the citizens had access to the treatment irrespective of their caste, gender, religion, & social status. Separate wards were allocated for male & female patients. The departmental distribution was made according to specialties such as orthopedics, psychiatry, Ophthalmology, & Gynecology. Based on the signs & symptoms of systemic diseases, the separate sections were allocated for fever, diarrhea, eye, infection, & wounds. The buildings had a regular water supply along with bathing facilities for patients. Most of the hospitals were equipped with libraries, pharmacy units, & lecture rooms. Even the musicians were hired where the music was used as a mood therapy for patients.

They preferred to erect bimaristans atop hills or along rivers. For example, the Al-Adudi Hospital was built near Baghdad’s Dejlah River in 981 AD. The river flowed through its courtyard and halls and returned to pour into the Dejlah. The Al-Mansuri bimaristan was one of the largest and most elaborate hospitals ever built. It had a total capacity of 8000 beds, and the annual income from endowments alone was one million dirhams . It freely served all citizens without regard for their colour, religion, sex, age or social status.

Andrew C Miller (2006), Gondeshahpur, Bimaristans, and rise of Academic Medical Centers, Journal of Royal Society of Medicine.
Avicenna expounding pharmacy to his pupils, from the 15th century “Great Cannon of Avicenna” , an illustration from Latin translation source: Welcome collection

The library of Tulum hospital at Cairo (established in the 09th century) alone had a collection of approximately one hundred thousand manuscripts. The patients & their attendants received free food that was prepared under the supervision of the hospital. It is not an exaggeration to say that Islamic medicine was centuries ahead of its time that has evolved with the contributions of diverse ethnicities & scholarly basis coming from its predecessors, Greeks, Persians & Indian Medicine. It was all happening in the timeline of eight & ninth centuries, whereas we had reports of the lepers burned to death on the royal decree in 13th century Europe.

Facade of Sultan Al Qalawun complex build in as a complex of mosque, school & Hospital,  1284–1285 from late 19th Century source: Wikiimages

Record Keeping of Patient Information 

Patient record keeping is one of the key features to attain high quality professional health care. The health data served as a tool that enhances the communication between different stakeholders of health care system. In digital era of 21st century, the medical informatics gave an opportunity of record keeping in form of digital data storage & retrieval. Do you know that early medieval hospitals of Saracenic world were credited to start the written documentation of patient records. The notes that covered clinical history, & details patient information along with treatment were documented by medical students. The clinicians finalized the records after further edits.

Licensing of Physicians 

In contemporary medical education, the licensing boards examined the knowledge, skills & competence of physicians to ensure their safe professional conduct in health care. The roots of the physicians licensing exam go back to Saracenic medicine. An event took place in the year 931 CE at Baghdad. A patient passed away due to the error of some physician & it was reported to Caliph Al-Muqtadir. The chief physician was called & instructed to examine all the practicing physicians of Baghdad. From a total of eight hundred sixty, who appeared for the exam, one hundred sixty were disqualified from doing the medical practice. From then onward, the licensing board was formed under the supervision of Muhtasib (Inspector-General). After the successful clearance of exam, the students were provided with a license after undertaking the Hippocratic oath. 

Training in Basic medical sciences 

Muscle figure, shown frontally, with extensive text denoting muscles.
From The Anatomy of the Human Body (Tashrih-i badan-i insan) written in Persian at the end of the 14th century by Mansur ibn Ilyas Source: National Library of Medicine https://www.nlm.nih.gov/exhibition/islamic_medical/islamic_10.html

The chemistry was one of the prerequisites to enter the medical school. Anatomy, Physiology & Pharmacology from the baseline of medical training in Islamic Medicine. In some schools of Baghdad, the anatomy & physiology taught separately. The dissection was performed on animals & illustrations were also used in lectures. Anatomy was taught by dissection of apes, skeletal studies, and didactics. Pharmacology & Toxicology form the central core of the preclinical curriculum. From Hunayn Ibn Ishaq to 13th century Ibn Nafis, all physicians of Islamic medicine added notes & descriptions on Anatomy & Physiology in their treatise. The tenth-century Kitab Al-mansuri by Ibn Zakaria (Rhazes) was compilation on body structures by giving details on bone, muscles, nerves & blood vessels. He applied the concepts of neuroanatomy in clinical practice & described the role of recurrent laryngeal nerve. It was Ibn Nafis who critically reviewed the theory of circulation given by Galen & discovered the pulmonary circulation.

Clinical training 

It is stunning to find that the clinical training practiced in the medical schools of the Saracenic world is almost imitable to the modern learning methods of the 21st century. There was a focus on small group learning. The students were attached with notable physicians where they complete wards, rounds, & discussions on patients. Today modern assessment methodologies in medical education focused on the direct observation of procedural skills (DOPS) in clinical training. Going back ten centuries before in teaching hospitals of the Islamic world, we can find the trainees were asked to perform history taking & physical examination under supervision. Then they were asked to collect the findings & finally need to present in the form of notes. The feedback of their performance was given & then the treatment was decided. The trainees were responsible entirely for the record-keeping of patients.

Albucasis demonstrating to trainees blisters on a patient in hospital. An oil painting by Ernest Board C late 19th Century Source: https://wellcomecollection.org/works/hfvcxxpd

Medical Ethics

Though medical ethics has its roots from the Hellenic days as the fifth century BC Hippocratic Oath has relevance both in Islamic medicine & today’s modern medicine. Ethics in Islamic medicine mainly draws its framework from the Quran, Sunnah, & then Ijtihad of scholars. Akhlaq & Ihsan form the basis of the code of conduct for medieval Physicians. Ninth century scholar & physician Ali bin Sahl Rabban al-Tabari gave one of the earliest compilations on medical ethics in Islamic Medicine in his work Firdaws Al Hikma (Paradise of Wisdom). Tabari was born in an intellectual Syriac Christian family of Khurasan. His code of ethics mainly focuses on these four attributes:

  • Personal character of physicians
  • His obligation towards physicians
  • His obligation towards community
  • His obligation towards Colleague

Adab Al Tabib (Etiquettes for Physician) was one of the earliest compilations on the Medical Ethics in history of Islamic Medicine. It was written by Isḥāq ibn `Alī al-Ruhāwī in the 9th century CE. His treatise covered the topics in three categories, the conduct of Physician, the conduct of patient, & conduct of the public towards the medical profession. His book also embedded the issue of medical negligence, & legal suit of the physicians for the malpractice. 

Notable personalities 

  • Hunayn ibn Ishaq al-‘Ibadi (809-873) was born at Al-Hira, Iraq. A Nestorian Christian whose father worked at the pharmacist. A legendary student of Yūḥannā ibn Masawayh. He and his team of translators at Baitul Hikma (House of wisdom) rendered the entire body of Greek medical texts, including all the works of Galen, Oribasius, Paul of Aegin, Hippocrates and the Materia Medica of Dioscorides, into Arabic by the end of the ninth century.
  • Yuhanna Ibn Sarabiyun (800-900) popular in the European world with his Latin name as Sérapion. A Syrian Christian who has a great contribution in medical writings in 09th century Baghdad. His name was the first among four legendary Arabic polymaths who has been mentioned Geoffrey Chaucer, the Prologue to The Canterbury Tales (c. 1390)
  • Abū Bakr Muhammad ibn Zakariyyā al-Rāzī (854-925), a Persian polymath who was born at Ray, now part of Modern Iran. History of Medicine, United States, National Library of Medicine introduced him as one of the greatest names in medieval medicine. His treatise “The disease of children” led some historians to be regarded as the father of pediatrics. He also authored a book on exposing malpractices of quacks. His books, which were translated in Latin and remained a part of the European medical curriculum for centuries.
  • Abu `Ali al-Husayn ibn `Abd Allah ibn Sina (980-1037) known in west as Avicenna in the west. Born at Bukhara, & he took his tours all across the Islamic world. By the time of his death, he left around two hundred seventy treatises of which Kitab Al Shifa (Book of Healing) & Al Qanun Fi Al Tibb (Cannon of Medicine) remained part of medical curriculum for centuries all across Arab world & in Europe. His contributions were compared with Hellenic era physician Galen & regarded by some as Father of Modern Medicine.
  • Abū al-Qāsim Khalaf ibn al-‘Abbās al-Zahrāwī al-Ansari (936-1013) known in west as Abulcasis. He was born at Medina Azahra in Al Andalusia, now modern Spain. His ancestors belonged to Al-Ansar tribe of Medina in Hejaz, Arabia. He has served at the court of Caliph Al Hakam II. His treatise “Al Tasreef Liman’ Ajaz ‘Aan Al-Taleef“, (The Clearance of Medical Science For Those Who Can Not Compile It) is a compilation of his experiences as Physicians & Surgeons with thirty volumes. He was credited with performing the first thyroidectomy (surgical removal of the thyroid gland). Also considered as the father of modern surgery who has introduced around two hundred surgical instruments. His translations of surgical chapters from Al Tasreef were published at Venice (1497), Basel (1541), Oxford (1778). Some of his notable innovations in medical technology were the development of the vaginal speculum and forceps, usage of animal gut in sutures, applying cotton to dress wounds, and usage of a “concealed” surgical knife to allay anxiety patients.
Opening page from Cannon of Medicine by Avicenna, 16th C Arabic version. Source: Wikiimages
Albucasis demonstrating to trainees blisters on a patient in hospital . An oil painting by Ernest Board C late 19th Century Source: https://wellcomecollection.org/works/hfvcxxpd
An illustration of the surgical instrument from Latin translation of Albucasis account with title Chirurgia Albucasum , Source: Welcome Collection
  • Abū-Marwān ʻAbd al-Malik ibn Abī al-ʻAlāʼ Ibn Zuhr (1094-1162) who is known in west as Avenzoar. Born at Seville, then the province of Al Andalusia (Spain). His ancestors from the last six generations were Physicians. His compilation Kitab al‐Taisir fi al‐Mudawat wa al‐Tadbir/ Practical Manual of Treatments and Diet and Kitab al‐Aghziya/Book on foodstuffs were translated into Latin in the late 13th century and used in European universities until the 18th century.
  • Hasdai Ibn Shaprut (915-970) born at Jaen & died at Cordoba, Al Andalusia (Spain). He was a son of a wealthy Jewish family from Jaen who studied Latin, Hebrew & Arabic from his formative years. As a polymath, he was a scholar of multiple disciplines, but he got fame for his career as Physician & diplomat in Caliph Abd Ar Rehman III. When Sancho I, the prince of Leon, was overthrown from his kingdom in 958 by rivals, they took help from Abd Ar Rehman III. During this time, Ibn Shaprut was assigned to the Sancho I for reducing his morbid obesity. After lowering his morbid obesity, he was sent by reinforcement given by Caliph to restore his lost throne.
  • Abū l-Walīd Muḥammad Ibn ʾAḥmad Ibn Rušd (1126-1198) born at Cordova (Spain) & passed at Marrakesh (Morocco). He was popular in west as Averroes. In medicine his treatise Kitab al-Kulyat fi al-Tibb is combination of Anatomy, Physiology, Pathology, Pharmacology, Hygiene, Symptomatology & Therapy. During his life time, it was translated in Latin at Granada. The Latin translation “Colliget/Generalities on Medicine” was the part of European medical curriculum till 18th century.

The article is an attempt to review medical education in early Islamic Medicine as historical perspectives. Syed Ibrahim (Clinical Professor at University of Louisville, School of Medicine) review article “Islamic Medicine: 1000 years ahead of its time” cited that many attributes of modern medical education were built on system evolved during this early phase of Islamic Medicine. Andrew C Miller, review article elaborated a significant point as relevance for this title. He said “Medical profession that is built on the ethics of seeking the right knowledge in the world, an acknowledgment of the non-western world towards medicine & medical education needs loud evidence based articulation“. It’s an amazing phenomenon that happened in the rise of early Saracenic civilization where we saw the fusion & evolution of knowledge imbibed from diverse Hellenic, Persian, & Indian predecessors. The vast empire of the Islamic world became a melting pot for the cultures. Islamic medicine is one of the most shining facets of early Saracenic civilization, where we saw the participation of Arabs, Persians, Indians, Zoroastrians, Jews, and Nestorians.


Looking back we may say that Islamic medicine and science reflected the light of the Hellenic sun, when its day had fled, and that they shone like a moon, illuminating the darkest night of the European middle Ages; that some bright stars lent their own light, and that moon and stars alike faded at the dawn of a new day – the Renaissance” .

(Arnold and Guillaume, Legacy of Islam, 1931)

References: 

    1. Andrew C Miller (2006), Gondeshahpur, Bimaristans, and rise of Academic Medical Centers, Vol 99 (12), Journal of Royal Society of Medicine.
    2. David, W, Tschanz (2001), Hunayn Bin Ishaq, The great translator, Vol 1, Journal for International society of History of Islamic Medicine. 
    3. Fernando Delgado, (2012), The Neurosciences in Averroes “principles of Medicine”, Vol 32(3), Annals of Saudi Medicine. 
    4. Gordon Childe (1952), What Happened in History, Vikings, 2nd Ed.
    5. Khalil G Wakim, (1944), Arabic Medicine in literature, Vol 32(1), Bulletin of Medical Library Association. 
    6. Plinio Priorschi (1996), A History of Medicine, Byzantine & Islamic Medicine, Horatius Press. 
    7. Thomas Arnold & Alfred Guillaume (1931), Legacy of Islam, Oxford: Clarendon press. 
    8. Ranjit Hoskote, & Ilija Trojanow, (2012), Confluences: Forgotten Histories from East and West, Yoda Press. 
    9. Syed Ibrahim B (2002), Islamic Medicine: 1000 years ahead of time, Vol 2, Journal for International society of History of Islamic Medicine.
    10. Bio-bibiographies, Islamic Medical Manuscripts at National Library of Medicine. Retrieved from https://www.nlm.nih.gov/hmd/arabic/bioY.html, last reviewed 2014.
    11. Al-Razi, the Clinician, Islamic Culture & Medical arts, History of Medicine, National Library of Medicine, last reviewed 2011.

Shams ud-Din Iltutmish

An imaginary portrait of Iltutmish Source: Wikiimages
  • He was the first independent Muslim ruler to sit on the throne of Delhi.
  • It was he who consolidated the entire north India from Bengal to the borders of Afghanistan and founded the Delhi Sultanate.
  • It was he who made Delhi, the capital of Hindustan for the first time.
  • He freed the Delhi Sultanate from the claim of suzerainty by the rulers of Ghazni and laid the foundation of an independent reign.
  • He introduced a bimetallic coinage system to Northern India which served as the basis for coinage for much of later period.
  • It was he who as a successor of Qutub uddin Aibak and son-in-law completed a further three storeys of Qutub Minar.
  • It was he who lead the funeral prayer (Namaze-Janaza) of great Sufi Saint Hazrat Qutub-ud-din Bakhtiyar Kaki d.1235
  • He was the first Muslim Ruler from India who received the investiture of Khalifa of Baghdad, Al-Mustansir Billah.

According to Dr. RP Tripathi ‘The history of Muslim sovereignty in India, properly speaking, begins with Iltutmish. Historians agree that It was he who gave the country a capital, an independent state, a monarchical form of government and a governing class.

Iltutmish was the first real Sultan of Delhi.

Shams ud-Din Iltutmish (1211-1236) was the first Muslim sovereign to rule from Delhi and the real founder of the Delhi Sultanate. ltutmish’s full name was Shams-ud-din Iltutmish . His father Ilam Khan was a leader of the Ilbari Turkic tribe. According to Mihaj’sTabaqat-iNasiri, he was a handsome and intelligent boy, that made his brothers grew jealous of him. They sold him to a slave dealer at a horse show. After a series of sale and re-sale at Baghdad , Bukhara and Ghazni, finally he was sold to Qutab-uddin-Aibak, the first mamluk ruler of India. Historian Isami tells that Iltutmish also spent some time in Baghdad, where he met noted Sufi mystics such as Shahab-ud-Din Abu Hafs Umar Suharwardi and Auhaduddin Kirmani.

Name

The name “Iltutmish” means “holder of the realm or conquerer “but unfortunately his name has been mis-spelt throughout the history variously as “Altamish”, “Altamash”, “Iyaltimish”, and “Iletmish but a contemporary account Tajul-Ma’asir confirms that “Iltutmish” is the correct spelling of the name.

Hard work, discipline and good luck

Due to hard work, discipline and good luck, Iltutmish rose from one position to another. Just before ascending as Sultan he was the iqta-daar of Badaun. Keeping in view his character and talent, Aibak made him his son-in-law . After Aibak’s death his unpopular and inefficient successor Aram Shah was dethroned by Iltutmish and Iltutmish ascended the throne as Sultan in 1211 AD. By dint of his dauntless bravery and wisdom,  he transformed a weak and vulnerable kingdom into a stable empire in India. He freed the Delhi Sultanate from the claim of suzerainty by the rulers of Ghazni. During his twenty six year reign , he extremely busy in military expeditions, facing rebellions and consolidating the state against the invasions.

He made Delhi the capital of Hindustan

One of the momentous decision of Iltutmish was the shift of Capital from Lahore to Delhi, and it was for the first time that Delhi became the capital of such a vast dominion namely ,Hindostan. It was Iltutmish who enforced its dominance over northern India until the Mughal invasion and set up the capital at Delhi . Delhi for all practical purposes became the capital of Sultanate or Hindustan for the first time. In the words of Prof. K.A. Nizami “Who gave the country a capital (Delhi), an independent state, a monarchial form of government and a governing class.” 

As per Tabaqat-i-Nasiri, after declaring Delhi the capital of his kingdom he invested in numerous waterworks, mosques and learning institutions. His patronage of scholars and artists made Delhi an important cultural center. He promoted Delhi as royal metropolis and encouraged immigration of nobles and scholars from all over the world. He was very particular about the people of noble ancestry and blue blooded gentries coming from Arabia and Persia. It is a fact that a lot of notable Muslim families of Indian sub-continent owe their migration to Iltutmish. Among his other achievements, beautification of the city of Delhi as well as execution of a better administration were important. The population of Delhi remained loyal to Iltutmish’s name and legacy even after his death. The coinage issued by Iltutmish’s progeny demonstrates that Iltutmish’s name remained a symbol of legitimacy for nearly a century after his death.

A picture of Silver Tanka issued by Iltutmish

The Independence of Sultanate

He freed the Delhi Sultanate from the claim of suzerainty by the rulers of Ghazni, he got it as a hereditary kingdom, but by separating it from a subordinate position to Ghazni, he created an independent & stable entity. After the death of Qutab-ud-din Aibak, the Rajput Kingdoms such as Ranthambhor, Jalor, Mander ,Kalinjar, Gwalior, Ajmer, Bayana declared independence and many other had raised the standard of rebellion and put an end to the Aibak’s supremacy. Iltutmish dealt with them one after another and re-annexed those states. He was an able administrator, whose efforts brought stability in the kingdom.

Safety and stability

He kept the throne of Delhi safe from the danger of Mongol invasion as well as from the attacks of both Yeldiz and Qubacha. In 1221 A.D, Chengiz Khan came near the border of India following Jalal-ud-din, the defeated Shah of Khwarizm empire. Jalal fled into Punjab, took shelter and sent an envoy to Iltutmish with an appeal for help and shelter. Iltutmish was a very wise and clever ruler. He knew that sheltering Shah of Khwarizm would provoke Chengiz Khan and he could face the wrath of Mongol invasion. So he refused to gave any help to Jalal and requested to withdraw from the Punjab. This attitude of Iltutmish satisfied Chengiz Khan who withdrew instead of invading India. Due to this wise policy of Iltutmish, not only Delhi but the whole country was saved from Mongol invasions. He was an able administrator, whose efforts brought stability in the kingdom.

Iqtadari System and Chihilgaan

In order to reduce the power of hereditary feudal lords, he introduced the Iqtadari system. It was basically grant of revenue from a territory instead of a salary. In this system the officers were paid in land grants which were known as Iqtas. They were given the right to collect revenues from those specific lands grants.

Chihilgaan

He constituted a corp of forty loyal slaves Known as Turkan-i-Chihalgani. This select body of Turkish nobility consisted of important and highly placed officers in the court of Iltutmish, who were very loyal to him and kept a watch on the activities of nobles

Coinage System

The reign of Iltutmish stands out as a landmark in the coinage system of Delhi. He introduced a new bimetallic coinage system to Northern India consisting of an 11 grams silver (Tanka) and the Jital. The new system served as the basis for coinage for much of the Sultanate period and even beyond, though periodic shortages of silver caused further debasement. The Tanka is a forerunner to the Rupee. Iltutmish founded schools for civil servants that were later revived by Feroze Shah Tughlaq.

Investiture from the Khalifa

He was the first Sultan from India who was recognised and bestowed the titles from the Khalifa of Baghdad. In 1229 A.D. the Khalifa of Baghdad, Al Mustansir Billah, bestowed on Iltutmish the titles of “Yamin Khalifat Allah” or Right Hand of the Khalifa and “Nasir-amir-al-Momineen” or the Deputy of the leader of faithful. This investiture increased his power and prestige in the Sultanate. As a mark of commemoration of this event, Iltutmish introduced a coin inscribing his name there on as the representative of Khalifa. He considered this to be a great achievement of his life.

Constructions

During his iqta-dar-ship in Badaun, Iltutmish built the city’s fort, Eidgah, & the Jama Masjid Shamsi of the city, which remained the biggest and most famous mosque in Medieval India until the expansion of Delhi’s Jama Masjid in Alauddin’s time. Still in India, its considered in the list of oldest & with one of largest mosque dome that have a circumference of around forty three feet. Shams ud-din built many Khanqas (Sufi Hospices) for Sufi saints. Gandhak-ki-Baoli, a step-well for the Sufi saint, Qutabuddin Bakhtiar Kaki is one of its remnants that was build by him. He moved to Delhi during his reign.

A view of Shamsi Jama Masjid at Badaun from its eastern gateway. According to inscription in mosque, it was completed in 1223 Pic source: Tawarikh Khwani

Hauz Shamsi

Hauze Shamsi

Near the Gandhak ki Baoli, Shams ud-din also built the Hauz-i-Shamsi, a water tank which he erected in 1230 . Actually Sultan Iltutmish was thinking of erecting a water tank to find a a solution to the ever increasing problem of shortage of drinking water in the newly founded capital. It is reported that Sultan lllutmish was unsure where to choose the site of the reservoir when one night he saw the Prophet (SAW) in the dream mounted on a white horse guiding him to a spot. Next morning when the Sultan went to the place indicated in his dream, he found the hoof print of the prophet’s horse at the same site. He then erected a pavilion to mark the sacred location and excavated a large tank (reservoir) around the pavilion to harvest rain water. It was built on an area of about two miles long and a mile wide. This Tank has a special mention in the malfuzat of Shaikh Nizamuddin Awliya titled “Fawaid ul Fuaad“.

He is said to have completed the construction of the Qutab Minar, originally started by Qutub -ud-din, and he expanded the Qutab complex and the Quwwat al-Islam Mosque as well.

In 1231, following the demise of his oldest son and heir apparent, Nasir ud-Din Mahmud, he built Sultan Ghari the mausoleum for him, which was the first Islamic Mausoleum in Delhi. The tomb lies within fortified grounds, which also include the graves of several other members of Iltutmish’s family.

A view of Qutub Minar by water color on Ivory C 1860-65, by Royal painter of Delhi, Ismail Khan with caption “The Khutub Minar Delhi”, Source: British Library
Sultan Ghari, the grave of Iltutmish son, Nasir Ud Din

A noble soul

All contemporary and later writers have lauded Iltutmish’s pious lifestyle and his strong moral chracter. He was very considerate towards the poor and the needy had a respectful attitude towards the ‘ulama and scholars but he did not gave them liberty to interfere in affairs of the state. Several saints flourished during his reign such as Sheikh Qutubuddin Bakhtiyar Kaki, Qazi Hamiduddin Nagauri, Sheikh Jalaluddin Tabrizi and Sheikh Bahauddin Zakariya Multani. Iltutmish himself was a devout Muslim and respected the scholars highly but at times he overruled Ulama’s suggestions who wanted to follow a stricter religious policy. He understood the limits to which Islamic Law could be implemented in a largely non-Muslim country. When some Ulama asked for a ban of musical gatherings in Delhi , the Sultan did not favor them and ruled against them.

As a young man in Nishapur, Iltutmish had spent time with Sufi masters and in Delhi he allowed the mystical movement to flourish under his reign. Iltutmish visited Multan, a key center of learning, to pay respects to Bahauddin Zakariya Suharwardi. It is noteworthy that Shaikh Bahauddin Zakariya Multani was quite favourable and sympathetic towards the sultan and it was he who had helped Iltutumish and warned him of malicious designs of Qubacha.

In 1221 , Qutubuddin Bakhtiyar Kaki RA came to Delhi where he was warmly welcomed and extended support by Sultan Iltutmish who reportedly became a disciple of the saint. He remained aloof from the political affairs of the state and acquired great respect and esteem throughout the dominion. Sultan offered him the office of Shaikh ul Islam which he had declined politely.The Sultan had great respect for Shaikh Qutubuddin Bakhtiyar Kaki. There is a strange but true incident quoted in several books of Sufism. Khazinat al Asfiya and Bazm i Soofia report that Khwaja Qutub- ud-din Bakhtyar Kaki had left a will that his funeral prayers be led by someone who had never committed adultery, never missed the Sunnah Prayers before Asr, never missed the opening announcement of all obligatory Namaz (Takbir-i-Ula), the one who must be steadfast on the late night prayers ( Tahajjud). The report goes on to say that none had the courage to come out and lead the prayers. Iltutmish who was present there, waited for a while, then came forward saying “I did not want pedantic display of piety but the will of the shaikh must be fulfilled“. Finally he lead the funeral prayer (Namze-Janaza). He even carried the bier to the graveyard for burial.

Death

Iltutmish fell ill in 1235 A.D. due to continuous military operations. During his last expedition against Bayana, he was struck down by severe illness and was brought to Delhi immediately for treatment but his health deteriorated and could not fully recover and finally breathed his last in 1236. With his death the country lost a great ruler and also there came to an end the long twenty-five years glorious reign of Delhi Sultanate. He was buried in the Qutub complex at Mehrauli.

The death of Iltutmish was followed by years of political instability at Delhi. During this period, four descendants of Iltutmish were put on the throne and murdered. Iltutmish’s eldest son, Nasir-ud-din Mahmud, had died in 1229 while governing Bengal as his father’s deputy. The surviving sons of the Sultan were incapable of the task of administration. In 1236, Iltutmish, on his death-bed, nominated his daughter Razia as his heiress.

On account of Iltutmish’s achievements in bringing about political consolidation out of turmoil, Dr. R.P. Tripathi has observed, “Qutub-ud- din cannot be regarded ever as sovereign ruler of Muslim India because no coins of his name are available and his name is conspicuous by its absence in the list of kings prepared by IbnBatuta and in that prepared by Firoz- Shah Tughlaq for Khutba.” He has further observed, “The history of Muslim sovereignty in India begins properly speaking with Iltutmish.”

References:

  • B.N. Puri, M.N. Das , A Comprehensive History of India: Comprehensive history of medieval India.
  • P. Tripathi, Some Aspects of Muslim Administration, reprint (Allahabad, 1972).
  • The Delhi Sultanate: A Political and Military History. Cambridge University Press.
  • Peter Jackson (2003). Muslim Rule in India & Pakistan S. M. Ikram (1966).
  • Satish Chandra (2004), Medieval India: From Sultanat to the Mughals-Delhi Sultanat (1206-1526) , Har-Anand Publications.
  • Fouzia Farooq Ahmed , Muslim Rule in Medieval India: Power and Religion in the Delhi Sultanate.
  • Tabaqat-i- Nasiri – Minhaj Siraj -1863- Calcutta
  • Futuh us Salatin – Isami – 1948 p.110-119
  • The Book of Muinuddin Chishti by Mehru Jaffer
  • Khazinatul Asfia P.275
  • Fawaid al Fuad –Hasan Sijzi Urdu translation.
  • Khaliz NIzami , Salatin-i-Dehli ke mazhabi Rujhanat (1958), pp 102-108.
  • KA Nizami , Studies in Medieval History & Culture – Allahabad (1966)- pp.15-18.
  • The Indian Historical Quarterly – – Volume 13 – Page 122 -1937
  • The Present in Dehli’s past 2002 – pp.10-45
  • Sultan Iltutmish -Rekha Joshi-Bharatiya Publishing House, 1979 – Delhi (Sultanate) – page 57
  • Lucy Peck (2005). Delhi – A thousand years of Building. Hauz Shamsi. New Delhi: Roli Books Pvt Ltd.

Niki Lagat Mohe Apne Piya Ki

नीकी लागत मोहे अपने पिया की

शाह तुराब अली कलंदर (1768-1858) के दीवान का कवर पेज

कभी कभी ज़िन्दगी में हैरत अंगेज तजुर्बे होते हैं, हम लोग आपस में किस तरह से एक दूसरे से जुड़े हुए हैं या किस किस तरीके से एक दूसरे से सीखते हैं, सिखाते हैं, एक दूसरे को मुतासिर करते हैं ,ये अपने आप में एक रिसर्च का विषय है। मैं एक वाकया लिखता हूं।

कई बरस पहले की बात है । मैं आगरा से दिल्ली जाने के लिए ट्रेन में जब सवार हुआ तो देखा कि मेरे सामने की तरफ एक गुरुजी अपने साथियों /चेलों के साथ विराजमान हैं। कुछ चेले गुरु जी का हाथ भी दबा रहे थे, थोड़ी देर के बाद गुरुजी ने उसमे से‌ किसी का नाम लेकर हुक्म दिया के फलां चीज सुनाओ फौरन वह बंदा सामने आया और एक भजन /भक्ति गीत शुरू कर दिया जब वह भजन खत्म हो गया तो दूसरे का हुकुम हुआ तब उसने दूसरा भजन सुनाना शुरू किया तो मुझे यह कलाम जाना पहचाना सा महसूस हुआ

नीकी लगत मोहे अपने पिया की।
आंख रसीली लाज भरी।।
जादू कियो मो पर चितवन सो।
चैन गई मोरी नींद हरी।।
आंख लगत नहीं टुक देखे बिन।
देखै नजर भर जात मरी।।

यह कविता जब खत्म हुई तब तक गुरुजी झूमने लगे थे जब उनका यह हाल खत्म हुआ तो मैंने उनके चेले से कहा कि यह कविता अभी पूरी नहीं हुई इसमें कुछ लाइनें रह गई है तो सबने चौक कर मेरी तरफ देखा और तब गुरु जी ने भी अपने चेले से पूछा कि यह साहब क्या कह रहे हैं ,ये सुनते ही मैं गुरु जी से मुखातिब हुआ कि अभी यह कविता पूरी नहीं हुई है इसकी अंतिम लाइनें रह गई , बोले क्या लाइन है ? तो मैंने उनको सुनाया

मोका न कछु समझा ओ री गुइयाँ।
मैं अस प्यार सो दरगुजरी।।
काहे “तुराब” डरूँ काहू से।
पीत करी का चोरी करी।

गुरुजी चौंके और बार-बार यह लाइनें दोहराते रहे 

पीत करी का चोरी करी|

फिर गुरुजी ने हमें अपने पास बुलाकर बिठाया और हमारा नाम, पता पूछा जब मैंने अपना नाम बताया तो उन्हें बहुत हैरत हुई , पूछा कि बेटा तुमको यह सब का ज्ञान कैसे है ?

हमने उन्हें बताया कि यह कलाम हमारे तरफ के एक बड़े सूफी संत का लिखा हुआ है और हमने उनकी किताब में पढ़ा है और ये एक मशहूर ठुमरी है ,तब उन्होंने मुझसे कहा कि इसको एक कागज पर लिख दीजिए और बताया कि यह उनके पिताजी और हमारे बाबा की पसंदीदा कविता है जिसको हम भजन की तरह सुनते और गाते हैं पर यह भी बताया कि उनके पास उनके बाबा की एक डायरी है जिसमें इस तरह के भक्ति गीत लिखे हुए हैं और वह इस गीत को चैक करके मुझे बताएंगे , मेरे पूछने पर उन्होंने ये भी बताया कि वो मथुरा के एक मंदिर के पुजारी है और वहीं जा रहे हैं उसके बाद मैंने उनसे मौलाना हसरत मोहानी का कृष्ण जी से अपने लगाव का जिक्र किया और उन्हें मौलाना हसरत मोहानी के दो शेर सुनाये जो मुझे उस वक़्त याद आए।

कुछ हमको भी अता हो __ऐ हजरते कृष्ण
इकलीम ए इश्क आप के ज़ेर ए क़दम है आज
हसरत’ की भी क़ुबूल हो मथुरा में हाज़िरी
सुनतेहैंआशिक़ों पे तुम्हारा करम है आज

यह सुनने के बाद गुरुजी बहुत खुश हुए और अपने चेलों से मुखातिब होकर बोले देख रहे हो |

उसके बाद उन्होंने एक से मेरा नंबर नोट करने को कहा और इतनी देर में मथुरा का स्टेशन आ गया और मथुरा में यह पूरा काफिला उतर गया | मुझे याद है कि जब मैं दिल्ली पहुंच गया तो उसके कुछ रोज़ के बाद मथुरा से फोन आया पहले एक आदमी ने मुझे बताया कि गुरु जी आप से बात करेंगे और कुछ देर के बाद गुरुजी की आवाज सुनाई दी । गुरु जी ने मुझे बताया कि मेरी बात सही थी और उनके बाबा की डायरी में हू ब  हू पूरा गीत मिला जो मैंने लिखकर दिया था, उन्होंने मुझे इस तरह के कलाम भेजने के लिए भी कहा और मुझे मथुरा आने के लिए भी कहा मगर क्योंकि मुझे इंडिया से वापस आना था मैं उनकी ख्वाइश पूरी नहीं कर सका।

इस बातचीत के बाद उन्होंने अपनी ओर से फोन पर ही एक ठुमरी भेजी जिनको देख कर मुझे यकीन हो गया कि अच्छा और सच्चा कलाम बहुत दूर तक जाता है, वहां जहां तक हम सोच भी नहीं सकते , क्योंकि जो ठुमरी उन्होंने भेजी वो शाह मुहम्मद काजिम कलंदर की लिखी हुई थीं जो इन्हीं शाह तुराब अली के पिता थे और उन्होंने ये बताया कि ये गीत खास तौर से जन्माष्टमी के मौके पर पढ़े जाते हैं , जो ठुमरी उन्होंने भेजी वो ये थीं

भूल गई हमरी सुध उनका, जब से राजा कीन घुसय्याँ
हमरी संग खेलत गोकुल्मां, तो सब बिसर गयीं लरकय्याँ
हमरी अन्ख्याँ चुभत है वे दिन, जे दिन रहे करवट गय्याँ
सुध आवत व दिन कि अव्धो, जरत सदा हृदय की सय्याँ
आदि से शाम रहे काज़िम संग, अंत बनी रहे यहे गुय्याँ

काकोरी (लखनऊ) का मशहूर कस्बा हैै जहां सूफी  बुजुर्गों का एक पुराना खानदान आबाद है , इस खानदान के संस्थापक शाह मोहम्मद काजिम कलंदर थे ( म.1806 ई) और उनके बाद उनके बेटे शाह तुराब अली कलंदर ( म. 1858 ई) हुए ये दोनों वहां के बड़े सूफी बुजुर्ग गुज़रे हैं और अब तक वहां खानकाह क़ायम है और उनकी बाकमालऔलाद वहां मौजूद है  इन बुजुर्गों के फारसी उर्द कलाम के अलावा अवधी ठुमरियां बहुत आला है और पढ़ने से ताल्लुक रखती हैं किसी अगली पोस्ट में इन हजरात पर लिखने का इरादा है। 

असली दीवान में कलाम नीकी लागत मोहे

इन सूफी बुजुर्गों ने खुदा औेर खुदा की मोहब्बत की तरफ पुकारती हुई ऐसी रचनाएं पेश कीं जिस से एक आम इंसान भी इन्हें समझ कर खुदा की मोहब्बत की तरफ बढ़े और और इसके लिए उन्होंने वही प्रतीक इस्तेमाल किए जो उस समय का एक आम आदमी भी समझ सकता था। जैसे कृष्ण कन्हैया ,गोपियां , वृंदावन इनका इस्तेमाल उन्होंने स्थानीय रिवायत को ध्यान में रख कर किया और ये कलाम आज तक उनकी इंसान और इंसानियत से मुहब्बत की यादगार बन कर ज़िंदा है।

बहुत कम लोगों को मालूम है कि मशहूर मिसरा  “कोई पत्थर से ना मारे मेरे दीवाने को” इन्हीं शाह तुराब अली कलंदर का है जिसका इस्तेमाल एक फिल्म में भी किया गया और जो बहुत मशहूर हुआ। असल शेर यूं है।

शहर में अपने_ ये लैला ने मुनादी कर दी
कोई पत्थर से न मारे ___मिरे दीवाने को

Zalabia to Jalebi: A journey of South Asian Dessert

Pic source: Tawarikh Khwani

Jalebi, a hyperlocal Indian dessert that has been intricate with all layers of its social fabric. Jalebis can be found from the road side thatched food corners in country side to the centrally air conditioned sweets shop chains of metropolitan cities.  A famous North Indian proverb is used in Urdu & Hindi languages “Jalebi ki tarah seedha” that means “straight like a Jalebi”. Its used as a satirical remark for someone comparing his behavior with the twisted shape of a popular sweetmeat.

From 18th Century Faez Dehalvi to Nazir Akbarabadi, this twisted hyper local sweetmeat finds place in the Urdu couplets of these poets. The chefs filling the heated oil pans with a spiral shapes by moving a muslin white cloth filled with a batter of sweetmeat is common sight at every next door sweet shop in India streets. The spiral shapes were deeply fried till it became golden brown in color & then dipped in a sugar syrup. The crunchy hot Jalebis with yogurt is a common breakfast serving in North Indian towns. Let explore the interesting narratives of its historical origin. How this next door sweetmeat became the part of our culinary culture down the centuries. The Oxford Companion to Food by Alan Davidson quoted one citation in following words: “According to Hobson- Johnson, the word Jalebi is apparently corruption of Arabic Zalabiya or Persian Zalibiya. It seems both the word & food must have entered India in Mediveal ages. A Jain work of 1450 CE by Jiansura has a reference of a feast that includes the jalebi“. In Iran, the Jalebi is known as Zellabiya & its a  commonly seen dessert during the special occasions & feast. During the month of fasting (Ramzan), the sweet savory is in the top list of charity foods for the needy. In middle eastern countries many variants of Zalabiya existed from Egypt to Levantine countries. The medieval Arabic master work compiled during Abbasid era, One Thousand and one nights also cited sweet savory connecting it with the romantic poetic verses. The English translation of its Arabic verses by Forough Hekmat: 

Of Sweet Zolobiya chain I hung a necklace around her neck 

From its delicious loops, I made a rings around her ears

One such variant that is popular is Egypt as Zalabya is Luqmat al-Qadi that literally means Morsel of Judges. Its a sugar syrup soaked balls of simple leaved yeast dough fried in the oil pan. The recipe of Persian Zolobiya cited by Forough Hekmat in his culinary account ” The Art of Persian Cooking” stand almost closer to its congener Jalebi of Indian subcontinent. The 10th century culinary treatise of Abbasid era, Kitab alTabikh where more than ninety recipes of sweets has been cited has also mentioned these fritters as Zulaabiyyah.

Kitab al-Tabikh [The Book of Cookery] by Muhammad ibn al-Hasan al-Katib al-Baghdadi (d. 1240), reprint of Dawud al-Jalabi edition (published in 1934 by Matba’at Umm al-Rabi’ayn in Mosul, by Fakhri al-Barudi. Bayrut : Dar al-Kitab al-Jadid, 1964. Source: https://www.library.yale.edu/neareast/exhibitions/food/images/image007.jpg

It seems that the medieval Muslim armies from Central Asia brought their version of Zolobiya that evolved down the centuries as candy like fried tangles of dough what is now known as Jalebi in India & Pakistan (The donut: History, Recipe & lore from Boston & Berlin by Michael Krondl). Dileep Padgonkar (2010) write-up mentioned of 16th century Sanskrit culinary account Gunyagunabodhini where recipe of Jalebis has been explained. From Afghanistan to Bangladesh, the context & names of Jalebis imbibed multiple regional influences but still down the centuries, it holds its position as one of the most common sweetmeat of South Asia. 

References: 

  1. Oxford Companion to Food, Alan Davidson, Oxford University Press, 3rd ed. (2014). 
  2. The art of Persian cooking,  Forough Hekmat, Hippocrine books (1998). 
  3. Journey of Jalebi, Dileep Padgaonkar, (2010), retrieved from https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/Journey-of-the-jalebi/articleshow/5071902.cms
  4. The donut: History, Recipe & lore from Boston & Berlin by Michael Krondl, Chicago review press (2014). 

 

Hazrat Shah Abban Badar Chishti (Amroha)

( شاہ   ابٌن بدر  چشتی   رحمتہ  الله    علیہ ( امروہہ ا

امروہہ  شمالی ہندوستان کی ایک نہایت زرخیز  بستی ہے جس کو علمی ادبی اور روحانی حوالے سے تمام برصغیر میں ایک خاص مقام  حاصل   ہے  اس میں دو رائے نہیں کہ  یہ چھوٹی سی بستی اسلامی ہند کی ثقافتی زندگی میں خاص اہمیت کی حامل رہی ہے۔ اس سرزمین کو  انگنت علماء فضلاء ، اور بزرگان دین نے اپنا مسکن بنایا اور علمی ادبی سرگرمیوں سے اور ارشاد و تلقین سے ہر زمانے میں  ایک ہنگامہ گرم رکھا۔

یوں تو امروہہ میں بہت سے قدیم بزرگوں کی آمد اور انکے کارناموں کا ذکر تاریخ کی کتابوں میں موجود ہے بالخصوص شاہ ولایت  حضرت شاہ شرف الدین  نقوی سہروردی  رح  مگر آج ہمارا موضوعِ سخن دسویں صدی ہجری کے ایک ممتاز بذرگ  جو بدرمنیر کی طرح آسمان عرفان پر نمودار ہوئے اور جنہوں نے  اس پوری فضا میں  ایک  خاص روشنی اور توانائی پیدا کی اور جن کی صحبت بابرکت حاصل کرنے لئے  دور دور سے تشنگان معرفت آئے اور جنہونے ایک زمانے کی تریت کی،  میری مراد حضرت شاہ ابن بدر چشتی رحمتہ اللہ علیہ سے ہے جو امروہہ میں آسودہ خواب ہیں !.

حضرت شاہ ابٌن بدر چشتی نے دسویں صدی ہجری میں امروہہ میں مسند ارشاد قائم کی اور ایک بڑا مرکز قائم کیا  مشکل  یہ ہے کہ انکے تفصیلی حالات تزکروں میں نہیں ملتے  البتہ انکا  مختصرا  ذکر تقریباً  ہر اہم کتاب میں ہے مثلاً  بدایونی کی منتخب التواریخ اور غوثی شطاری کی گلزار ابرار میں اور اس  سے  معلوم ہوتا کہ اپ کی شہرت دور دور تک پھیلی ہوئی تھی ، مولانا غلام علی آزاد بلگرامی نے ان کو مشاہیر اولیاء میں شمار کیا ہے اور عھد اکبری کا مشہور مورخ  ملا عبد القادر بدایونی ، جو آپ کی خدمت میں حاضر ہو چکا تھا  آپ کی اتباع سنت کی پابندی کی تعریف کی ہے، تحریر کرتا ہے

سالک مجذوب بود ، باوجود  این  حالت ، دقیقہ از دقائق شریعت مطہرہ ازو  فوت نہ شدے

اخبار الا خیار میں شیخ عبدالحق محدث دہلوی لکھتے ہیں”  از جملہ مریدان  و خلفائے شیخ علاءالدین شیخ ابن امروہہ مردے عزیز و مسن و صاحب حال و مجذوب شکل بود

پیدائش 

کتب تواریخ میں آپ کی  سنہ  پیدائش  کا کہیں ذکر نہیں ملتا اکثر کتابوں میں اتنا ہی ملتا ہے ہے کہ آپ نے بہت  لمبی عمر پائی اور خاندانی روایت کے مطابق آپ کی عمر  ایک سو چالیس سال کی ہوئی ،  اخبار الاخبار میں بھی  ہے ” مردے عزیز و مسن و متبرک و صاحب کمال بود، اگر  آپ  کے سنہ وفات  سے حساب لگایا  جائے  تو آپ  کی پیدایش  ٨٤٠  سے  ٨٦٠  ھ کے درمیان  کی  ہونے  کا  امکان ہے

نام و نسب

آپ کا نام نامی سید عبداللہ عرف ابٌن اور کنیت ابو الفتح  ہے  ، آپ کے مرشد نے اپ کو بدر چشتیاں کہا جو آپ کے نام  کا حصہ بن گیا بلکہ اصل نام سے زیادہ معروف ہے ! 

نسبا آپ سادات رضوی کرمانی  خاندان  کے  فرد  تھے ، آپ کے بزرگوں میں سے اول سید محمود کرمانی بن سید شہاب الدین کرمانی ساتویں صدی ہجری  میں ہندوستان تشریف لائے  اور خواجہ قطب الدین بختیار کاکی سے تعلق ارادت قائم کیا اور  اپنی اقامت کے لیے ضلع برن (جسے آج بلندشہر کہتے ہیں) میں کالی ندی کے کنارے ایک موضع  کا انتخاب کیا جہاں آپ کی  اولاد  اب تک رہتی چلی آتی ہے ، اس کا نام گٹھاولی ہے اور اپ کا مزار بھی وہیں موجود ہے ، آپ کا لقب مالامال بھی مشہور ہے تھا جس کی وجہ سے اس جگہ کو مالا مال گڑھ بھی کہا جاتا تھا انہیں سید محمود کے ایک بھائی سید طیفور تھے جن کی اولاد سے شاہ  ابن  بدر چشتی  ہوئے ہیں.

تعلیم

حضرت مخدوم سید بدر چشتی کے والد سید احمد گنج  رواں   اپنے عہد کے اکابر علماء میں شمار ہوتے تھے ،حضرت بدر چشتی نے ابتدائی تعلیم اپنے والد سے ہی حاصل کی اور نو سال کی عمر میں قرآن مجید بھی حفظ کر لیا تھا ، 14  سال کی عمر تک پہنچتے  پہنچتے  عربی فارسی ادبیات اور دیگر علوم حاصل کیے اور اس کے بعد ملتان ، لاہور میں تحصیل علوم کی غرض سے مقیم رہے آخر کار دہلی میں مولانا ابراہیم سے احادیث و تصوف کی کتب پڑھیں اور پھر گھر واپس اکر والد ماجد کی جگہ درس و تدریس میں مشغول ہو گئے ، اپ کی پہلی اہلیہ کی وفات کے بعد آپ کو وہ موقع میسرآیا  کہ آپ خالصتاً تلاش حق کے لئے خود کو وقف کر سکیں۔ ،  چنانچہ  آپ تمام مال و اسباب و ترکہ آبائی کو تقسیم کر کے  حج  کے  ارادہ  سے حجاز مقدس کی طرف روانہ ہو گئے-حجاز مقدس کے دورانِ قیام میں ایک رات آپ کو خواب میں رسول کریم صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم کی زیارت ہوئی فرمایا کہ تمہارا حج ہوگیا لہذا دہلی کی طرف واپس جاؤ  اس کے بعد آپ نے دہلی کا رخ کیا اور غیبی طور پر پر  آپ فرید ثانی حضرت مخدوم شیخ علاءالدین زندہ پیر چشتی  اجودھنی رح کی خدمت میں حاضر ہوئے جو بابا فرید الدین گنج شکر کی اولاد میں سے تھے اور انہیں کے سلسلے سے مستفیذ و مجاز ت تھے اور اپنے عہد کے بڑے ممتاز مشائخ میں شمار ہوتے تھے،  حضرت شیخ علاء الدین  آپ کو دیکھ کر مسکرائے ،معانقہ کیا اور پہلی ہی ملاقات میں بیعت سے مشرف  فرما کر اذکار کی تلقین فرمائی , کچھ عرصے آپ حضرت زندہ پیر فیل مست کی صحبت میں رہے اور تکمیل سلوک کے بعد مرشد نے اپ کو خرقہ خلافت عطا فرمایا ،ںاپنی دستار اپ کے سر پر رکھی اور اپ کے متعلق ” بدر چشتیاں خواہی بود ” کے الفاظ ارشاد فرمائے اور اگرہ جانے کا حکم دیا ، شیخ  علاءالدین کے ایک مرید سید سلطان بہرائچی کو اشکال پیدا ہوا کہ مرشد نے اس قلیل مدت میں اس نوارد کو خلافت سے سرفراز فرمایا آخر اس کی کیا وجہ ہے ؟  اس خطرہ کےآتے   ہی حضرت زندہ پیر نے سید سلطان کی طرف طرف متوجہ ہو کر فرمایا کہ یہ درجہ کمال حاصل کرکے آئے تھے اور جن کے حکم سے آئے تھے انہی کے حکم سے جاتے ہیں اس میں ان کا اور میرے اختیار کا کوئی دخل نہیں یے 

اگرے میں اس وقت ایک کامل بزرگ شیخ علاءالدین مجذوب (المتوفی 953 ھ)  جن کو عرف عام میں علاول بلاول کہتے تھے موجود تھے اور اگرے کے صاحب ولایت تھے ، آگرہ پہنچ کر حضرت ابن قدرے علیل ہوگئے اور حضرت علاول بلاول  سے   ملاقات کی ، حضرت نے اپ کی  شفا  و  صحت  کی  دعا   کی  اور   امروہہ جانے اور وہاں سلسلہ جاری کرنے کی ہدایت فرمائی 

سلسلہ بیعت

حضرت شاہ  ابن بدر چشتی عن شاہ علاء الدین فیل مست عن شیخ  تاج الدین عن شیخ عبد الصمد عن شیخ منور عن شیخ فضیل عن شہخ معز الدین سلیمان عن شیخ علاء الحق یوسف عن شیخ  بدر الدین سلیمان عن شیخ فرید الدین گنج شکررح

سیرت

امروہہ پہنچ کر حضرت بدر چشتی نے قیام کے لئے وہی جگہ پسند فرمائیں جہاں آج بھی آپ کی خانقاہ بنی ہوئی ہے آپ نے اسی جگہ اپنا درس جاری کیا یہاں سے علوم معرفت کے لاتعداد جویا سیراب ہو کر نکلے آپ نے تصوف اور سلوک کی بعض نادر عربی کتابوں کا فارسی میں ترجمہ کرایا چنانچہ 944ھ  مولانا رکن الدین عباسی نے جو عہد اکبری کے مشاہیر علماء میں شمار ہوتے تھے حضرت کی ایماء پر ایک تصنیف کا فارسی میں ترجمہ کیا کیا جسکا حوالہ تاریخ امروہہ کی جلد چہارم  میں  مزید تفصیلات  دیے بغیر کیا گیا ہے

عہد اکبری کا مشہور مورخ ملا عبد القادر بدایونی اپنی کتاب “منتخب التواریخ” میں بیان کرتا ہے،


سید  ابٌن  امروہہ جس زمانے میں میں میاں شیخ داؤد سے مل کر پنجاب سے واپس ہوا تھا اور امروہہ کے راستے بدایوں جا رہا  تھا  تو حضرت کی خدمت میں پہنچا  تھا  اس  وقت وہ کسی کی طرف خاص طور سے متوجہ ہوۓ بغیر کلام پاک کی ایک آیت بیان کر رہے تھے کبھی کبھی میری طرف دیکھ لیتے تھے۔  انھوں نے اس وقت جزا و صبر کرنے والوں کے اجر کی فضیلت بیان کی اور اس سلسلہ میں آیت ‘والباقیات الصالحات’ میری طرف دیکھ کر تلاوت کی۔  اس تلقین کا مطلب جلد ہی ظاہر ہوا۔ ان کا اشارہ کسی مصیبت کی طرف تھا۔  چنانچہ میری ایک بچی تھی جس کو میں بہت چاہتا تھا۔  میں ابھی اس سفر میں تھا کہ وہ بدایوں میں فوت ہو گئ ان کے وہ تسلی آمیز الفاظ غالباً میرے ہی لیے تھے۔  والله علم

حضرت شاہ محمد فائق سرہندی سے منقول ہے کہ حضرت مخدوم بدر چشتی شروع سے ہی حضرت رسول کریم صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم کے اقوال اور افعال کے جویا رہتے تھے اور آپ کی دلی آرزو تھی تھی کہ ہر امر میں شریعت کا اتباع کیا جائے آئے اور آپ پنج وقتہ نمازوں کی طرح آپ نماز تہجد کے بھی اس قدر پابند تھے کہ جس روز آپ کی والدہ محترمہ کا انتقال ہوا اس روز تدفین سے فارغ ہونے کے بعد فرمایا کہ نو سال کی عمر میں حضرت والد ماجد نے مجھ کو نماز تہجد شروع کرائی تھی اس دن سے لیکر صرف آج قضاء ہوئی ہے

ایک  موقع  پر آ پ  نے   فرمایا  ” دنیا عالم اسباب ہے اور تمام اسباب کا سلسلہ مسبب الاسباب پر ختم ہوتا ہے ،ہر اثر کی نسبت مجازی طور پر کسی سبب کی طرف ہے مگر مؤثر حقیقی سوائے ذات باری تعالٰی کے کوئی نہیں شرک اسباب   شرک کے اقسام میں سے ایک  قسم ہے اس لئے انسان کو لازم ہے کہ جو فیض اسکو پہنچے   یا  جو نعمت اس کو حاصل ہو ، منجانب اللّٰہ جانے ،خواہ ظاہری سبب کچھ بھی ہو

چوں آں ذات محیط جملہ اشیاء است
بہر شکلے___ ادا ر ا می شناسم

ایک روایت سے معلوم ہوتا ہے کہ آپ کو قرآن اور تفسیر سے خاص شغف تھا ، مولانا عبد الحلیم نام کے ایک بزرگ فرماتے ہیں کہ مجھے چند فلسفیانہ شبہات تھے اور میں جب نماز جمعہ کے لئے اس چھوٹے سے گاؤں میں حاضر ہوا جہاں پر حضرت شاہ ابن رح اپنے سفر امروہہ کے دوران قیام پذیر تھے ، تو اپنے نماز جمعہ کے بعد آیہ کریمہ ھو الاول والآخر والظاہر والباطن کی ایسی تفسیر بیان فرمائی کہ اہل علم حیران ہو گئے اور میرے تمام شکوک رفع ہو گئے  

آپ سے بہت خوارق و کرامات کا ظہور ہوا  جیسا کہ بدایونی کہتا ہے ” خوارق از و بسیار نقل می کنند” ، لیکن ہمارے نزدیک آپ کی متشرع اور پابند سنت حیات مبارک بجائے خود ایک کرامت ہے 

اپ کا ذکر مختصراً مراۃ الاسرار اور تاریخ  اولیاء ،اخبار الاخیار، طبقات اکبری ، گلزار ابرار، معارج الولایت ، بحر زخار جیسی کتابوں میں پایا جاتا ہے مگر تفصیلات کسی جگہ نہیں ملتی ،کہیں کہیں آپ کا ذکر بھی ہے کہیں کہیں صرف نام پر ہی اکتفا کیا گیا

تاریخ اولیاء جلد روم میں مؤلف امام الدین احمد گلشن آبادی لکھتے ہیں آپ سالک و مجذوب ہیں بڑے صاحب کمالو وجد و حال ہیں باوجود حالت جذب کے شریعت کے حکم کو کبھی نہ توڑا اور کشف و کرامات و خوارق عادات آپ سے بہت جلوہ گر ہوئے وفات 987 ھ میں واقع ہوئی قبر آپ کی امروہہ میں ہے

وفات

آپ کی وفات ۵،  ذی قعدہ 987 ھ  میں ہوئی ، گو چند کتابوں میں مختلف تواریخ تحریر ہیں تاہم ہم نے ملا عبدالقادر بدایونی کی دی ہوئی سنہ پر اعتماد کیا ہے ، آپ کو شہر امروہہ کی آبادی سے جانب جنوب تالاب کے کنارے  کو سپرد خاک کیا گیا  بعد میں حضرت مخدوم کے ایک ہندو معتقد نے کثیر رقم خرچ کرکے خوبصورت نقشین پتھروں کا مقبرہ بنوایا  اس کی تکمیل کے بعد اس کے دل میں خیال گزرا کہ خرچہ اندازہ سے زیادہ ہوگیا ہے اس خیال کے آتے ہی تمام عمارت منہدم ہو گئی جس کے بڑے بڑے نقشین  پتھروں کو بعد میں حضرت مخدوم کے نبیرہ حضرت شاہ مقصود محمد نے ترتیب دے کر چبوترے کی صورت میں تبدیل کردیا

آپ کے خلفاء میں شاہ عالم کرمانی  انہوں نے آپ کے ملفوظات بھی جمع کئے تھے اور شاہ  دانا بریلوی, شاہ برخوردار رامپوری اور  شیخ طاہر بنگالی کے نام لئے جاتے ہیں ، ان سب  پر  الله  کی  رحمتیں  ہوں !

اولاد

حضرت مخدوم بدر چشتی کی پہلی شادی آپ کے آبائی وطن گٹھاولی میں ہوئی تھی جس سے ایک صاحبزادے شاہ سیف الدین پیدا ہوئے  ان کی   اولاد  وہیں سکونت پذیر  رہی  بعد میں حضرت مخدوم نے تین شادیاں اور  کیں پہلی سے حضرت شاہ محمد ہوئے دوسری سے شاہ احمد، شاہ صدر الدین اور تیسرے سے حضرت شاہ نور الدین، شاہ قطب الدین،  شاہ بدر الدین اور  شاہ  ابو القاسم  ، ان میں سے شاہ بدر الدین کے علاوہ تمام کی  اولاد  امروہہ میں اور بواسطہ امروہہ مختلف مقامات میں موجود ہیں ،آپ کی اولاد میں اس قدر سر علماء صلحاء فضلاء اور مشاہیر گزرے ہیں کہ ان کا احاطہ ناممکن ہے حکیم محمد بخش ، حکیم سید عسکری ، سید احمد حسن محدث وغیرہ آپ ہی کی اولاد میں سے تھے اور موجودہ دور میں پاکستان میں مقیم اردو کے مشہور شاعر ڈاکٹر خورشید رضوی  بھی حضرت مخدوم کی اولاد سے ہیں

اختمام  کرنے  سے  پہلے  جی چاہتا ہے کہ  حضرت  کے  پیر  و مرشد  شیخ  علا الدین  فیل  مست  چشتی  کا  بھی  ذکر  تبرکا   کر  دیا     جائے

شیخ علاء الدین اجودھنی قدس سرہ

آپ کی ظاہری اور باطنی  ہر دو   لحاظ  سے  بابا  صاحب شیخ فرید گنج شکر قدس سرہ کی  اولاد  سے  ہیں  ۔آپ کے والد بزرگوار کا نام نورالدین تھا۔بیعت اور   خلافت  اپنے  دادا  شیخ  تاج الدین  بن شیخ عبد الصمد  ابن شیخ منور سے بیعت کی۔ آپ کو  فیل مست اور   فرید  ثانی   اور   گنج  شکر وقت بھی کہتے تھے، نہایت  مرتاض  اور  ذی  شان  بزرگ  گزرے  ہیں  ، علی اخلاق اور پسندیدہ اوصاف کے حمالک  تھے۔ باطنی  طور  پر  آپ   خواجہ قطب الدین بختیار  کاکی  سے مستفیض  تھے ،  آپ کی ولادت 872ھ  اور وفات بہ  روایت  گلزار  ابرار  947ھ  میں  ہوئی۔ مزار  آپ  کا   دہلی میں  ہے  ، مضمون  کا   اختتام  ہم اس شعر سے کرتے ہیں جو حضرت شیخ علا الدین فیل مست نے شاہ ابن بدر چشت کو رخصت کرتے ہوئے  پڑھا  تھا :

در پس ہر گریہ آخر خندہ ایست
مرد آخر بین مبارک بندہ ایست

حوالہ  جات

  • اخبار  الاخیار   – عبد الحق  محدث  دہلوی
  • مرا ة  الاسرار   – عبد الرحمن  چشتی
  • گلزار  ابرار  – غوثی  شطاری
  • منتخب  التواریخ – عبد القادر بدایونی
  • تاریخ  امروہہ   – محمود  احمد  عباسی
  • معارج  الولایت  – غلام  معین الدین  عبدللہ  خویشگی
  •  طبقات  اکبری   – نظام  الدین  احمد
  • تاریخ   مشائخ  چشت    – خلیق  احمد  نظامی
  • تاریخ  سادات  امروہہ  – نہال احمد  نقوی
  • بحر  ذخار   – وجیہ الدین  اشرف    
  • تذکرہ  بدر  چشت  –  خورشید  مصطفیٰ  رضوی

Memories of Past: From Ranikhet in lesser Himalayas to Sialkot in Punjab

Story of Sayyad Muhammad Shah

Aziz Fatima, a seventy-seven-year-old Urdu speaking lady from Sialkot, Punjab, Pakistan recollects her memories from her birthplace at Ranikhet. A beautiful hill town situated in the Kumaon Hills of the Himalayas that is now a part on Uttarakhand, India.

Appreciation letter issued for Sayyad Muhammad Hussain Shah in 1936 from Army headquarters Cawnpore

Dr. Kazmi, the son of Mrs. Aziz Fatima, a microbiologist is working as colleague from last six years at my workplace in Saudi Arabia. Even we used to share a common office from last two years along with one closer friend from Karachi. As we used to have chats on many shared topics, one of them is history and culture. He used to tell me that his maternal grandfather run a coffee house somewhere in India before partition. Tempted with inquisition one day I requested Yousuf to ask his mother if she could memorize the place where his grandfather was settled in Colonial India. This is how my context with Mrs. Aziz Fatima was started. As Yousuf father belonged to famous Kazmi Sayyads of Ambala, I was presuming that his maternal grandfather was probably settled somewhere in East Punjab. After the weekend, when we were chatting in our spare time, Yousaf interrupted the talk in between. He told I had talked with “Ammi” on weekend for the queries that arose regarding her father’s residential place in Colonial India.  He took out handwritten notes from his pocket and placed his reading spectacle frame to read the text written by him. He started to read the text from the piece of A4 size paper and asked me to take the notes or collect the information. It was “Chaubatiya Pahad, Ranikhet’’ somewhere in India and he moved to other details collected from the mother. In between he added, she was also talking of the someplace “Moradabad” where his Nana used to visit a lot. For the moment I was lost and then exclaimed with joy and with a sense of belonging I stopped Yousaf. It was hard for my colleague to understand the feelings at that moment of time. I started to narrate him in one big bolus, this is my place. You know I used to work for a year at one of the Medical Colleges at Moradabad before coming to Saudi Arabia. My wife’s family lived at Kathgodam, the last railway station on the route to Ranikhet and other hill towns of Kumaon. Ranikhet is only eighty kilometers from Kathgodam. In excitement, I bring my hometown inside the chat. You know Pilibhit is the last district of Uttar Pradesh and its boundaries touched with Uttarakhand, the province in which now Ranikhet is located. Sitting in our offices thousand kilometers away from our countries, the distances between Pilibhit, Kathgodam, and Ranikhet seemed to be insignificant for both of us. From here I had many queries in my mind that could be only answered by Mrs. Aziz Fatima. I placed my next request to talk to his mother who was in Sialkot. After the gentle nod, he made a call to his mother and fix my appointment with her on coming Thursday 10.30 PM Pakistani time on 29th September 2018. 

Avoiding the noise of big boss (one the favorite shows of my wife) and kid’s cartoon running on the gadgets of my son in the lounge, I stepped with pen, paper, and recorder in the drawing-room. It was the younger brother of Yousaf who picked the phone. After initial greetings, he handed the phone to his mother. Initiated with apprehension, I broke the silence by greeting her. While I was introducing myself she asked me a question “Beta aap India me Kidhar  Rahteho”.  As usual, I started from Delhi, moved to Bareilly and then finally came on Pilibhit to provide her an orientation of my lesser known hometown. But this allays all my anxieties as I easily jumped on Ranikhet. I continued “Yousaf told me that you were born at Ranikhet”. Did you recall anything from your birthplace? For the moment, there was a pause as she was taking the time to enter in her childhood memories. Then she broke the silence, “Bahut Purani baten hain main to paanch saalki thi jab hum log Ranikhet chhod kar aye the”. From here our talk continued for more than one hour on Ranikhet, her father, childhood days and journey to Sialkot.

A portrait of Sayyad Mohammad Hussain Shah (1895-1971) from 1930s Source: Family collection

I was born at Ranikhet in 1944. My father Mr. Syed Mohammad Hussain Kazmi came here for the purpose of business. We originally belonged to the small village in Sialkot known as Kammawala. In fact, it’s hard to remember whether he has any relatives or any friends living here in Ranikhet before his arrival. But as far as I know, he came to search for business opportunities. When I was a child I saw him as a successful manager & supervisor for the contracting company Shamsuddin & Sons that worked for the army mess.  Among the locals in hills, he was popular with the name of Shah Ji. From the archival letters that have been safely kept with my elder brother, it appears that he was working with army mess contracting company as a manager & supervisor in 1930s from Cawnpore & Lucknow. A letter issued in 1934 by a major from Lucknow headquarters of Army cited him as a manager & supervisor for the directing staff camp messes in the district. Many of the letters issued from Cawnpore & Lucknow eulogized him as a sincere & capable manager who did his duties in an efficient manner. At Chaubatia in Ranikhet, he was working for Royal Berkshire regiment”.

An official letters issued for Sayyad Mohammad Hussain Shah in 1934 from Dilkusha, Lucknow with the signature of Deputy Assistant Quarter Master General of Colonial Army, Lucknow district
An archival letter from Army mess Chaubatia, Ranikhet, 1940 on the letterhead of Berkshire regiment

I interrupted her, why Shah Ji. You told me his name as Mr. Syed Mohammad Hussain Kazmi. She replied “beta, hum log Saadat hai na aur un dino me Sadat to “Shah” ke naam se pukarne ka riwaj tha”. As we belonged to the house of Prophet (Sayyad), it was the trend in those days to call then as “Shah”.  She continued “All Hindus and Muslim used to give a lot of respect to Shah Ji”. From here onward, she mentioned his father with Shah Ji or Abba Ji. You know “Shah Ji” was a kind man. He has good connections with British Officers. There were a lot of British citizens who used to live at Ranikhet in those days. Locals used to approach Abba Ji for the jobs and some of them got placements due to his contacts with Britishers.

Could you recall the exact place where you were living? I was informed that he also runs a coffee house there. Where exactly it was located?

She replied, “Haan Mujhe achhe se yaad hai”.  I remembered it very well. The place where we used to live was a little bit away from Ranikhet. It was a small wooden cottage located in the base of the mountain. I could remember, it was surround by beautiful pine trees and apple orchards. The area was known as Chaubatia Pahad. We used to live on the first floor and ground floor was used by another Hindu family from plains. Abba Ji was mainly engaged as a Manager for the contracting company and also runs a Coffee house. His Coffee house was on the way from Ranikhet and Chaubatia. The coffee house was like a past time passion for Abba Ji. Many of the British officers used to visit during off time at his coffee. We commute by own Jeep for visiting Ranikhet.

Did you have any memories to share from Ranikhet?

Haan beta bahut sari yadeen hain. I used to go to the local School. As I remembered, there were two schools at Ranikhet, one for natives and others for British kids. She stopped for a while and then exclaimed: “You know I can read Hindi alphabets because of my early schooling at Ranikhet”. I used to attend natives school. Two of my elder brothers were studying at Shimla. They visited us at Ranikhet during summer vacations. I could recall some of my father friends lived in main Ranikhet. We usually visited their homes during Muharram. In Ranikhet, we used to watch the mourning procession of Ashura. One incident I would never forget from my childhood. I could remember it was a small mud road near chaubatia hill close to our cottage. I was walking with my younger brother who was around three years old. As one of the naughtiest among our kins, he was always ready for adventures. He jumped in the small stream of the canal that was running by the side of the road. When I found my brother drowning in water, I started screaming and called for help. I saw two local girls probably thirteen-year-old passing us on the road. Initially they ignored but when I gave reference of “Shah Ji”. They stopped and one of them who know swimming jumped in the stream of water and rescued my brother. Abba Ji was fond of the utensils from Moradabad. He has a huge collection of Morabadi bartan most of them were Nakshi ke Bartan.

Sayyad Abbas, the brother of Mrs. Aziz Fatima in the lap of local hill boy who used to work at their home. Picture dated: Early 1940s

When you left Ranikhet and what was the reason behind it. Did you recall anything from your journey from Ranikhet to Pakistan?

As I remember during 1947 there was no incidence of violence reported in our beautiful town. Up to 1949, we continued to live here only. Though, all of our relatives were in Sialkot. One day Abba Ji received a letter from his elder brother. They insisted to join the family. Initially, after partition, we used to think that the situation will change. This was just temporary. Here she uses specific Urdu word “Beta Sab ko yahi lagta tha yeh aarzi hai”. Initially, Abba Ji was apprehensive as he was well settled in Ranikhet. Finally, he made his mind and my mother started to pack our home. The only thing I could tell that we came to Pakistan by ship. I don’t remember where in India we boarded but it was a long journey and we finally reached Karachi. We left behind a wonderful cottage and coffee house at Chaubatia hills. After a long voyage by ship when we landed at Karachi, I had few memories of that time. There was a small girl who missed her parents. There was a man who was trying to help her in finding her parents by asking everyone at Karachi port. On reaching Karachi port big cartons of our home items that were loaded on other ship were lost. The only item that reached our paternal village in Sialkot after a long journey was favorite Naqshi Bartan of Shah Ji from Moradabad. Abba Ji was so fond of it that it was loaded in the same ship in which we boarded from India. It was with us till 1965 as memories from Ranikhet till 1965. During the war of 1965, we were in Sialkot and our ancestral home at village Kammawal was locked for a long duration. Some local thieves robbed all the belongings of our paternal home in which we lost all the Naqshi Bartan. Our elder brothers exchanged letters for some time to their Hindu friends of Ranikhet. Later this connection was lost. Many times I wished to saw the place where I was born and spent the early days of my life. Today talking with you has pushed me back in days of my childhood. Abba Ji after coming back to Sialkot always remained lost in his memories, the time he spends at Ranikhet, Lucknow & Cawnpore during colonial days. It was a big change for him. At the time of relocation, he was around fifty-four years. He ventured many businesses but didn’t able to succeed in a different environment. After some time, he faced health issues & took retirement. He passed away in 1971.

Did you find any from the childhood days and now living in Pakistan after partition?

That was different time. Now hate has been spread everywhere whether Pakistan or India. During British punishment was very strict and I think incidence crime was quite low. We used to have more pure edible items. Nowadays everything is adulterated & system is corrupt. I could recall, how badly my late father used to miss Ranikhet & his old days. May God bless his soul.

Al Khwarizmi: A Medieval Polymath

A review article| Khalid Bin Umar 

During the time of the Renaissance, Europe labelled a medieval polymath as being the “original inventor of algebra.” The person who wrote the first book on Algebra, & first to describe the systematic solution and quadratic equations. He was the one who wrote pieces on mechanical devices such as the clock, astrolabe, and sundial. He was also accredited for familiarizing the Western World with the decimal positional number system; moreover he was the man accountable for the use of Arabic numerals in Mathematics. People marveled, how he brought about the concept of Algorithm in Mathematics. It explains how the word “algorithm” came from his name. Without Algorithms, we would not be able to read this on the computer. In his book, Introduction to the History of Science, George Sarton refers to the first half of the ninth century as the “ The time of Al Khwarizmi“.

They were talking about Muḥammad ibn Mūsā al-Khwarizmi (780–850) who was a scholar from Golden age of Islam, an eternal student, a practitioner, and a teacher. As a polymath, his work was multidisciplinary that covered mathematics, astrology, astronomy, and geography. His academic writings have withstood centuries. He presented the first systematic solution of linear and quadratic equations along with the decimal system and introduced reduction and balancing (e.g., like and unlike terms). It was these contributions that gave him honor as the “father or founder of algebra.”

Although little is known about his early life, we know that he lived from 780 to 850 AD. His name tells that he was the son of Musa and father of Jafar.   He lived and worked in Baghdad, but his family came from Khiva in Khwarizm in Central Asia (then part of  Greater Khurasan of Iran). Presently its a part of Xorazm Province in Uzbekistan. Historical records left no clue about his daily activities, friends, and family of Khwarizmi.

In 772, when the seat of the Islamic Caliphate was transferred from Damascus to Baghdad, it became the center of scientific studies and trade at the height of the Islamic Khilafat. Merchants and scientists far from China & India traveled to this city. A more rational point of view emerged, knowledge from all over the world were collected, processed, and synthesized scientifically. In 820, Mamun Al Rasheed founded a scientific society named Bait-ul-Hikma (House of Wisdom) which consisted of a library, & an astronomical observatory where scientists were invited to do research. It made a significant impact on the sciences, especially mathematics and algorithms, along with medicine. Al-Khwārizmī was the lead astronomer and head of the library of the House of Wisdom. He accomplished most of his work here in Baghdad during the period starting from 813 to 833.

He was fortunate that he lived at a time when his works spread and made a mark in the academic history of the world. In 12th century, when his works spread to Europe through Latin translations, it had a profound impact on the advance of mathematics in Europe.

Algebra

The word Algebra is derived from the title of his seminal book called, al-Kitab al-mukhtasar fi hisab al-jabrwa’l-muqabala (The Compendious Book on Calculation of Integration and Equation) (الكتابالمختصرفيحسابالجبروالمقابلة).


The title page of the Arabic Al Kitab Al Mukhtasaral-Kitab al-mukhtasar fi hisab al-jabrwa’l-muqabala

The word “algebra” is derived from the Arabic term “al-jabr” which means “reunion of broken parts.”  Al-Khwarizmi used algebra to solve quadratic equations and the ideas that al-Khwarizmi developed, helped usher in the European Renaissance during the 14th, 15th, and 16th centuries. The book was translated in Latin as Liber algebraeetalmucabala by Robert of Chester hence the word “algebra” came into prevalence. It gives you several hundred simple quadratic equations by analysis as well as by geometrical example. It also has substantial sections on methods of dividing up inheritances and surveying plots of land. It is mostly concerned with methods for solving practical computational problems rather than algebra as the term is now understood.

This book covered linear and quadratic equations, which in turn solved trade imbalances, inheritance questions and problems arising from land surveyance and allocation. In passing, he also introduced into common usage of our present numerical system, which replaced the old, cumbersome Roman one.

The impetus behind the development of algebra was the Islamic law of inheritance, Hisab al-jabrw’al-muqabala devoted a chapter on the solution to the Islamic law of inheritance using algebra. He formulated the rules of inheritance as linear equations; hence, quadratic equations were not required. This book of Calculation of Integration and Equation changed mathematics forever.

A page from al-Khwārizmī’s Algebra

Text pages from Algebra manuscript with geometrical solutions to two quadratic equations

This book is considered as the foundation text of modern algebra. It provided an exhaustive account of solving polynomial equations up to the second degree. It also introduced the fundamental methods of “reduction” and “balancing”. He invented the study of algebra, & was a pioneer to consider algebra as an independent discipline.  He introduced the methods of “reduction” and “balancing” (the transposition of subtracted terms to the other side of an equation, i.e., the cancellation of like terms on opposite sides of the equation] and “balancing” (subtraction of the same quantity from both sides of an equation, and the cancellation of like terms on opposite sides. Al-Khwarizmi might not have invented algebra in the modern sense as Indians and Greeks were reportedly practicing this art but it was al- Khwarizmi who introduced algebra to the West. His style was so clear and authoritative that his volume became the standard mathematical text in Europe for hundreds of years.

In particular, Al-Khwarizmi developed a formula for systematically solving quadratic equations (equations involving unknown numbers to the power of 2, or x2) by using the methods of completion and balancing to reduce any equation to one of six standard forms, which were then solvable. He described the standard forms in terms of “squares” (what would today be “x2″), “roots” (what would today be “x“) and “numbers” (regular constants, like 42), and identified the six types as: squares equal roots (ax2 = bx), squares equal number (ax2 = c), roots equal number (bx = c), squares and roots equal number (ax2 + bx = c), squares and number equal roots (ax2 + c = bx), and roots and number equal squares (bx + c = ax2).

Having introduced the natural numbers, al-Khwarizmi introduced the main topic of this first section of his book, namely the solution of equations. His equations were linear or quadratic and composed of units, roots, and squares. For example, to al-Khwarizmi a unit was a number, a root was x, and a square was x2. However, although we shall use the familiar algebraic notation in this article to help the reader understand the notions, Al-Khwarizmi’s mathematics is done entirely in words with no symbols being used.

He first reduced an equation (linear or quadratic) to one of six standard forms:

  1. Squares equal to roots.
  2. Squares equal to numbers.
  3. Roots equal to numbers.
  4. Squares and roots equal to numbers; e.g. x2 + 10 x = 39.
  5. Squares and numbers equal to roots; e.g. x2 + 21 = 10 x.
  6. Roots and numbers equal to squares; e.g. 3 x + 4 = x2.

The reduction is carried out using the two operations of al-jabr and al-muqabala. Here “al-jabr” means “completion” and is the process of removing negative terms from an equation.

If we use one of al-Khwarizmi’s own examples, “al-jabr” transforms x2 = 40 x – 4 x2 into 5 x2 = 40 x. The term “al-muqabala” means “balancing” and is the process of reducing positive terms of the same power when they occur on both sides of an equation. For example, two applications of “al-muqabala” reduces 50 + 3 x + x2 = 29 + 10 x to 21 + x2 = 7 x (one application to deal with the numbers and a second to deal with the roots).

Al-Khwarizmi then shows how to solve the six standard types of equations. He uses both algebraic methods of solution and geometric methods. For example to solve the equation x2 + 10 x = 39

The book was translated in Latin as Liber algebraeetalmucabala by Robert of Chester hence the word “algebra came into prevalence. Gerard of Cremona later translated it. He formulated the rules of inheritance as linear equations; hence, quadratic equations were not required. This book of Calculation of Integration and Equation changed mathematics forever.

Arithmetic 

He wrote a treatise on Indo-Arabic numerals Kitāb al-Jamʿwal-tafrīq bi-ḥisāb al-Hind (“The Book of Addition and Subtraction According to the Indian Calculation”) in 825 AD. It was translated into Latin as Algoritmi de numero Indorum. This way he introduced Arabic numerals into the Latin West, based on a place-value decimal system developed in Indian sources. A fundamental role was played by the introduction of zero by means of a special symbol, a small circle or a dot. The decimal positioning system was known for a long time by Mesopotamian in a sense of positional system but the arithmetical treatise by Khwarizmi was the first mathematical work to provide a detailed presentation of the rules for executing four basic operations and for computing with fractions according to such notation. The efficiency of such computing methods contributed in making the name of Khwarizmi famous all over the Europe.

Algorithms

Today, people use algorithms to do addition and long division on the principles that are found in Al-Khwarizmi’s text written about 1200 years ago. The modern meaning of the word relates to a specific practice for solving a particular problem. He is the person who gave his name to one of the hottest ideas in 21st-century business: algorithms he developed the concept of the algorithm in mathematics and binary mathematics used in computer programming is based on the algorithmic modules, hence science of computer would not have developed as we see in our life. The programming language is based on trigonometry and derivative which was developed by him.


Latin translation, beginning with “Dixit algorizmi”

Robert of Chester’s translation of al-Khwarzmi’s treatise on algebra opens with the words dixit Algorithmi, “Algorithmi says.”  What happened is that over the period of time al-Khwarizmi’s name became in the West to denote first the new process of reckoning with Hindu-Arabic numerals, algorithmus,

Since his name was translated in latin as Algoritm, this led to the term “algorithm” and “algorism” which are derived from the latinized forms of al-Khwarizmi’s name, Algoritmi and Algorismi. Algorism and algorithm stem from Algoritmi, the Latin form of his name. His name is the origin of (Spanish) guarismo and of (Portuguese) algarismo, both meaning digit.

Traditional systems had used different letters of the alphabet to represent numbers or cumbersome Roman numerals, and the new system was far superior. It allowed people to multiply and divide easily in addition also gave chance to check their work. The merchant Leonardo Fibonacci of Pisa, who had learned about Arabic numerals in Tunis, wrote a treatise rejecting the abacus in favor of the Arab method of reckoning, and as a result, the system of Hindu-Arabic numeration caught on quickly in Central Italy. By the fourteenth century, Italian merchants and bankers had abandoned the abacus and were doing their calculations using pen and paper, in much the same way we do today.the entire step-by-step process of solving mathematical problems.

The original Arabic text of his work is lost but a Latin translation, Algoritmi de numeroIndorumsurvived. The work describes the Indian place-value system of numerals based on 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 0. The first use of zero as a place holder in positional base notation was probably due to al-Khwarizmi in this work. Methods for arithmetical calculation are given, and a method to find square roots is known to have been in the Arabic original although it is missing from the Latin version.

Trigonometry

Al-Khwārizmī (c. 780-850) compiled a set of tables for the trigonometric functions of sinesevidentl for a circle of radius of 150 degrees and cosine in the Zīj al-Sindhind, alongside the first tables for tangents. He was also an early pioneer in spherical trigonometry, and wrote a treatise on the subject, Al-Khwārizmī produced accurate sine and cosine tables, and the first table of tangents which encompassed the tables of trigonometric functions of sines and cosines.


The Astronomical Tables of al-Khwarizmi. Translation with Commentaries of the Latin Version

Astronomy

Al-Khwārizmī’s Zīj al-Sind hind (Arabic: زيج السند هند “astronomical tables of Sind and Hind“) is a work on calendrical and astronomical calculation to determine the movements of the sun, the moon and the five planets known at the time. This work marked the turning point in Islamic astronomy. The sine quadrant, invented by al-Khwārizmī, was used for astronomical calculations. It was used to determine time (especially the times of prayer) by observations of the sun or stars. It could be used for any latitude on Earth and at any time of the year to determine the time in hours from the altitude of the sun. This was the second most widely used astronomical instrument during the middle Ages after the astrolabe. One of its main purposes in the Islamic world was to determine the times of prayers. Al-Khwarizmi made several important improvements to the theory and construction of sundials, His sundial was universal and could be observed from anywhere on the Earth. From then on, sundials were frequently placed on mosques to determine the time of prayer. Like his treatises on algebra and Indo-Arabic numerals, this astronomical work (or an Andalusian revision thereof) was translated into Latin.

His books on sundialswas Kitab al Rukhama,this work included a table of sines, evidently for a circle of radius 150 units. The shadow square, an instrument used to determine the linear height of an object, in conjunction with the alidade for angular observations, was also invented by Al Khwarizmi. 

Geography

Al-Khwārizmī’s third major work is his Kitāb ṣūrat al-Arḍ (Arabic: الأرضصورةكتاب “Book on the appearance of the Earth” or “The image of the Earth” translated as Geography), which was finished in 833.

It was a major work on geography which give latitudes and longitudes for 2402 localities as a basis for a world map. The book, which is based on Ptolemy‘s Geography, lists with latitudes and longitudes, cities, mountains, seas, islands, geographical regions, and rivers. The manuscript does include maps which on the whole were more accurate than those of Ptolemy. In particular it is clear that where more local knowledge was available to al-Khwarizmi such as the regions of Islam, Africa and the Far East then his work is considerably more accurate than that of Ptolemy.

He systematized and corrected Ptolemy’s research in geography, using his own original findings .The text exists in a manuscript; the maps have unfortunately not been preserved, although modern scholars have been able to reconstruct them from al-Khwarizmi’s descriptions. He supervised the work of 70 geographers to create a map of the then “known world”. When his work became known in Europe through Latin translations, his influence made a permanent mark on the development of science in the West.

A single surviving copy of the text (no maps) has been kept at the Strasbourg University Library in France, while a Latin translation is available at the BibliotecaNacional de España, in Madrid. Kharazmi’s world-map has been reconstructed in detail by RadiyaJafri of the Aligarh Muslim University, and published as :kharI.tahjughrAfiyA-ye jahAnazrU-ye ketAb .sUrat al-‘ar.dKhwArazmI, ta.hlIlenteqAdIwa-tafsIrbehqalam-e rA.diyahJafrI,

Just have a look at the of Nile River he created from his exhaustive research.

He assisted a project to determine the circumference of the Earth which had long been known to be spherical and in making a world map for al-Ma’mun, the caliph, overseeing 70 geographers by measuring the length of a degree of a meridian through the plain of Sinjar in Iraq.

Jewish calendar 

(Risāla fi istikhrājtaʾrīkh al-yahūd “Extraction of the Jewish Era”) – Al-Khwārizmī wrote a treatise on the Hebrew calendar. It describes the Metonic cycle, a 19-year intercalation cycle; the rules for determining on what day of the week the first day of the month Tishrei shall fall; calculates the interval between the Anno Mundi or Jewish year and the Seleucid era; and gives rules for determining the mean longitude of the sun and the moon using the Hebrew calendar. Similar material is found in the works of AbūRayḥān al-Bīrūnī and Maimonides.

Al-Khwarizmi wrote a work on history which has not reached to us, but which was quoted by several later historians. A copy of his Kitāb al-Taʾrīkhhad reached Nusaybin by the 11th century, where its metropolitan bishop, Mar Elyas bar Shinaya, found it. Elias’s chronicle quotes it from “the death of the Prophet” through to 169 AH, at which point Elias’s text itself hits a lacuna


al-jadwal al-`ishrinI (The vicesimal table)This is  the spherical astronomy to determine the direction of Mecca (Qibla). In this book of tables he presented all twenty values of longitude difference x and twenty values of latitude difference y the angle q(x,y) between the qibla and the south in degrees and minutes. This is for a locality whose geographical latitude is the sum of y and the latitude of Mecca, and whose geographical longitude differs x from that of Mecca. The qibla was computed according to an approximate method equivalent to (tan (q(x,y))=sin(y)/sin(x)), as shown by the numbers 45;0 in the diagonal of the table.

Ma‘rifatsa‘at al-mashriqfīkullbalad –on the morning width

Ma‘rifat al-samt min qibal al-irtifā -for the determination of the azimuth from a height ( ‘).

Kitab al-`amalbi’l-asturlab, a book on operating with the astrolabe. Preserved in Berlin

Zara’if min `amal -Witty things on the Astrolabe

Marifat al-samtbil-asturlab the determination of the azimuth by means of the astrolabe

It is very much evident from these works that Al Khwarizimi was a outstanding scholar and a genius of all time.


A stamp issued in 1983 in the Soviet Union, on his 1200th Birthday | Pic Source: Wikiimages

J. O’Conner and E. F. Robertson wrote in the MacTutor History of Mathematics archive:

“Perhaps one of the most significant advances made by Arabic mathematics began at this time with the work of al-Khwarizmi, namely the beginnings of algebra. It is important to understand just how significant this new idea was. It was a revolutionary move away from the Greek concept of mathematics which was essentially geometry’.  

In the episode of Science in a Golden Age, theoretical physicist, Jim al-Khalili explores Al-Khwarizmi’s 9th century treatise that also underpins the science of flight and the engineering behind the fastest car in the world

In the history of Arabs – Philip Hitti wrote – “One of the greatest scientific minds of Islam, he influenced mathematical thought to a greater extent than any other medieval writer“.

While a good deal of controversy lingered on his major contributions — as to whether they were the result of original research or based on Indian and Greek sources — few can deny that beyond his ability to synthesize existing knowledge that the Greeks, Indians and others assembled. Saidan states that it should be understood as arithmetic done “in the Indian way”, with Hindu-Arabic numerals, rather than as simply “Indian arithmetic”. The Arab mathematicians incorporated their own innovations in their texts, Bridget Lim &Corronna Brezina accept that he might have taken some hint from Indian texts but they say Al Khwarizmis’ presentation of Algebra cannot be traced directly to any Hindu work. 

There is no doubt that Al-Khwārizmī’s contribution to mathematics, geography, astronomy, and cartography were phenomenal and this efforts were and holistic since they ranged from one subject to another; he took risk and didn’t hesitate in writing his own findings and exploring new dimensions in fields that intrigued him. Without his use of the zero in the Indian numbers that were introduced to Europe, the discipline may not have accomplished the kind of progress that gave rise to contemporary mathematics. He clearly left his mark in Mathematics, Astronomy and Geography; his achievements within that particular time period have continued their legacy till present times.

In memory of the great mathematician, a crater on the far side of the moon was named after Al Khwarizmi in 1973, which illustrated that he has been held in high esteem by the international scientific community and that his works have stood the test of time. 

Pic source: Wiki images

References:

Brentjes, Sonja (2007). “Khwārizmī: Muḥammad ibn Mūsā al‐Khwārizmī” in Thomas Hockey et al.(eds.).

The Biographical Encyclopedia of Astronomers, Springer Reference. New York: Springer, 2007, pp. 631–633

Goldstein, B.R. (1968). Commentary on the Astronomical Tables of Al-Khwarizmi: By Ibn Al-Muthanna. Yale University Press.

Gandz, Solomon (1938). “The Algebra of Inheritance: A Rehabilitation of Al-Khuwārizmī”. Osiris. 5 (5): 319–391. doi:10.1086/368492. 

Burnett, Charles (2017), “Arabic Numerals”, in Thomas F. Glick (ed.), Routledge Revivals: Medieval Science, Technology and Medicine (2006): An Encyclopedia, Taylor & Francis, 

Berggren, J. Lennart (1986). Episodes in the Mathematics of Medieval Islam. New York: Springer Science+Business Media

Daffa, Ali Abdullah al- (1977).The Muslim contribution to mathematics. London: Croom Helm. 

Saidan, A. S. (Winter 1966), “The Earliest Extant Arabic Arithmetic: Kitab al-Fusul fi al Hisab al-Hindi of Abu al-Hasan, Ahmad ibn Ibrahim al-Uqlidisi”,

Al-Khwarizmi: Father of Algebra and Trigonometry By Bridget Lim, Corona Brezina

The Algebra of Mohammad ben Musa, edited and translated by Frederic Rosen. London 1831.

Urdu zaban ke Gumgashta Alfaz-II

اردو زبان کے گم گشتہ الفاظ-۲

پڑھنے والوں کی خدمت میں آداب۔ اردو کے گم گشتہ الفاظ کی دوسری قسط کے ساتھ حاضر ہیں۔ آج ہمارا انتخاب وہ الفاظ ہوں گے جن کا تعلق گھر اور چار دیواری سے ہے۔ ہمارا  ارادہ یہ ہے کہ وہ الفاظ زیرِ بحث لائے جائیں جو ایک عرصہ دراز تک عوام الناس کے زیرِ استعمال رہے لیکن جدید ایجادات اور حالیہ رہائشی طرزِ تعمیر کے سبب  آج  ہمارے اذہان سے تقریباً محوِ ہو چکے ہیں۔ آئیے آغاز کرتے ہیں کچھ ایسے الفاظ سے جو ہمارے رہن سہن  سے ایک طویل عرصے تک متصل رہے

دروازے کی زنجیراور کنڈی، کارنس،سلفشی، برامدہ

زنجیر فارسی زبان کا لفظ ہے۔ جبکہ کنڈی ہندی زبان سے ماخوذ ہے۔  ایک طویل عرصے تک لوگ  گھروں میں لکڑی کے دروازے استعمال کرتے تھے خاص طور پر بیرونی یا خارجی دروازے۔ دروازے کے دو پٹ ہوتے تھے جنہیں کواڑ بھی کہتے تھے (کواڑ مختلف معنوں میں استعمال ہوا ہے لیکن عام فہم زبان میں اس کے معنی دروازے کے پٹ  کے ہی ہیں).

کواڑ گرچہ مقفل تھے اس حویلی کے

مگر فقیر گزرتے رہے صدا کرتے (انور مسعود)

 ان کواڑوں کو ایک مخروطی شکل کی کنڈی سے بند کیا جاتا تھا جو ایک زنجیر کے ساتھ منسلک ہوتی تھی۔ اس زنجیر کو جب لکڑی کے دروازے کے ساتھ کھٹکھٹایا جاتا تھا تو ایک نہایت دلنشیں نقرئی صدا بلند ہوتی تھی جو دور تک سنائی دیتی تھی۔ کنڈی کی شکل ایک بند کلی سے مشابہت رکھتی تھی۔    وصی شاہ نے اس کنڈی کو اپنی نظم ‘‘ عشق‘‘ میں اس طرح بیان کیا ہے ؎

A pic of “Kundi” on a wooden door. Pic Source: Yusuf Kazmi
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لمبی سی باریک سی پگڈنڈی میں عشق

بیل کی گردن سے لپٹی گھنٹی میں عشق

گھر کے دروازے پر لٹکی دل جیسی اس کنڈی میں

جس میں لیلی، سسی، ہیر کا جٹی کا دل اٹکا ہو

رنگ برنگے بنٹوں میں ککڑی میں گلی ڈنڈے میں

کسی فقیر کی جھگی پر لہراتے کالے جھنڈے میں

عشق ہوا میں عشق گھٹا میں

عشق کڑنک کے ہر خوشے میں

کو کو کرتی امبواجی سے پیار جتاتی کوئل میں

ہک ہک کر کے چلتی گاؤں کی سات سریلی چکی میں

جدید دور میں لکڑی کے  دو کواڑوں پر مشتمل دروازوں کا رواج ختم ہوا۔ پھر لکڑی کی جگہ دھات سے بنے دروازے عام ہو گئے۔ لوگوں نے اپنا طرزِ زندگی بدلا تو کنڈی کی ہئیت  بھی تبدیل ہو گئی۔ کواڑ، دروازے کی زنجیر اور کنڈی   جیسے الفاظ اب تقریباً ختم ہی ہو چکے ہیں۔

کارنس

کارنس(Cornice) انگریزی زبان کا لفظ  ہے۔ انگریزی لغت میں اس کا منبع فرانسیسی لفظ (corniche)،اطالوی لفظ (Cornice) یا پھر یونانی لفظ (korōnis) ہے جس کے معنی ایک خاص طرزِ تعمیر ہے جو دیوار یا چھت سے تجاوز کرتی ایک افقی سطح ہوتی ہے۔ اس لفظ کو ادب میں انیسویں صدی میں بہت استعمال کیا گیا اور بعد میں بتدریج کم ہوتا اب اکیسویں صدی میں  بالکل ناپید ہو گیا ہے۔

Angrezi zaban ka lafz hai. Angrezi lughat me is ka manbaa fransisi cornice se hai jis ke Koronis ya phir Unani lafz Cornice ya italwi lafz Corniche. Mani ek khaas tarz tameer hai jo diwar ya chat se tajawiz karti ek ufqi satah hoti hai. Is lafz ko adab me 19swin sadi bahut istemal kia gaya aur baad me baa tadreej kam hota aur ab 21swin sadi me bilkul napaid ho gaya hai.

A Pic of Cornice with the central round Taakh. Pic Source: Tabish Akhyar

کارنس مختلف اقسام کی  ہوتی تھیں لیکن جس قسم کی کارنس کا تذکرہ یہاں مقصود ہے وہ دراصل بیٹھک کی کسی ایک دیوار سے متصل پتھر کی ایک ہموار افقی سِل ہوتی تھی جس کو دیوار سے سیمنٹ کی ایک خم دار پٹی سے سہارا دیا جاتا تھا۔ کارنس پر زیبائش کی اشیا رکھی جاتی تھیں (جیسے گلدان، فریم میں سجی تصاویر، وغیرہ)، یا پھر روز مرہ استعمال کی ضروری اجناس جیسے کتب، فائل، ٹائم پیس، وغیرہ۔ اردو ادب میں اس لفظ کا تذکرہ سب سے پہلے سوانح عمری امیر علی ٹھگ ۱۸۸۹ میں ملتا ہے۔

Karnis mukhtalif iqsam ki hoti thin lekin jis qism ki karnis ka tazkirah yahan maqsood hai wo dar asl baithak ke kisi ek deewar se mutsal pathar ki ek hamwar ufqi sil hoti thi jis ko diwar se cement ki ek khamdar patti se sahara diya jata tha. Karnis par zebaish ki ashia rakhi jati thi. jaise guldan, frame, waghaira, ya phir roz marra ke istemal ki zaruri ajnas jaise kutub, file, time piece, waghaira. Urdu adab me is lafz ka tazkirah sab se pahle sawaneh umri Amir Ali Tahak 1889 me milta hai

http://urdulughat.info/words/6001- کارنس

کارنس کا جدید عمارات میں ناپید ہو جانا ایک حیران کن بات ہے۔ کارنس بہت عمدہ تعمیراتی تصور تھا۔ جب گھروں کی تعمیر تجارتی نقطہ نظر سے کی جانے لگی تو کارنس اس میں بڑی رکاوٹ بنی کیونکہ اس کو بنانے میں  اضافی اخراجات در پیش ہوتے تھے۔ نیز، ائیر کنڈیشنرز کے آ جانے سے کمروں کا حجم چھوٹا ہو گیا اور چونکہ کارنس جگہ گھیرتی تھی، اس لئے اس کا مصرف کم ہو گیا ۔ ڈرل مشین اور جدید کیل کی فراہمی کی بدولت کارنس کی اشیاء اب دیوار کی زینت بننے لگیں۔ انگریزوں کے برِ صغیر سے چلے جانے کے ساتھ ہی یہ فن بھی  ہمارے ہاں سے رخصت ہو گیا۔ اور آج بہت کم افراد اس لفظ سے آشنا ہیں۔ is

Karnis ka jadid imarat me napaid ho jana ek hairan kun baat hai. Karnis bahut umdah tamirati tasswur tha. Jab gharon ki taamer tijarati nuqte nigah se ki jane lagi to karnis is me badi rukawat bani kyun ki is ko banane me izafi ikhrajat darpesh hote the. Air condition ke ane se kamron ka hajam chota ho gaya aur chunki karnis jagah gherti thi is lie us ka masraf kam ho gaya. Drill machine aur jadid kil ki farahmi ki wajah se karnis ki ashia ab diwar ki zeenat banne lagin. Angrezon ke baree sagheer se chale jane ke saath hi yeh fan bhi hamare yahan se rukhsat ho gaya. Aur aaj bahut afrad is lafz ke ashna hain

اداس ہو کے سجا کارنس کے پتھر پر

Udas ho ke saja karnis ke pathar par

(زمیں پہ ٹوٹ کے گرتا میں وہ گلاس نہ تھا (ظفر صدیقی

Zamin pe tot ke girta main woh glass naa tha

کل کارنس پہ دیکھ کے چڑیوں کا کھیلنا

kal karnis pe dekh ke chintion ka khelna

(بے وجہ ذہن اس کے خیالوں میں بٹ گیا (اصغر مہدی ہوش

Be wajah zehan us ke khyalon me bat gaya

https://www.rekhta.org/ghazals/tamaam-shahr-men-koii-bhii-ruu-shanaas-na-thaa-zafar-siddiqui-ghazals?lang=ur

سلفچی

بچپن میں ہمارے گھروں میں ایک لفظ ‘‘سلفچی‘‘ زبان زدِ عام تھا۔ روزانہ صبح اٹھتے ہی پہلا  جملہ یہ سنائی پڑتا۔ ’’اٹھو بچو! سلفچی سے منہ ہاتھ دھو کر ناشتا کرنے آ جاؤ۔ لغت کی کتب میں سلفچی (یا سلفشی) کے معنی ہیں ہاتھ منہ دھونے کا (portable washbasin)ایک خاص وضع کا نقل پذیر برتن 

Bachpan me hamare gharon me ek lafz “Salafchi” zuban zade aam tha. Rozana subah uthte hi pahla jumla yeh sunai padta : “Utho bacho salafchi se moonh haath dho kar nashta karne ajjao”.

A picture of Silabchi Source: TawarikhKhwani
A picture of Silabchi Source: TawarikhKhwani

یہ لفظ  دراصل سیلاب چی ہے۔ سیلاب فارسی زبان کا لفظ ہے جس  کے عام معنی طوفانی بارش سے پیدا ہونے والا پانی کا ریلا ہے ۔ ؎

آئے ہے بے کسیِ عشق پہ رونا غالبؔ

کس کے گھر جائے گا سیلابِ بلا میرے بعد

در حقیقت لفظ سیلاب بھی دو لفظوں کا مرکب  ہے۔ سیلِ آب۔ سیل بہنے والی شے کو کہا جاتا ہے جیسے؎

 جس سمت میں چاہے صفتِ سیلِ رواں چل

(وادی یہ ہماری ہے وہ صحرا بھی ہمارا    (ایک بڈھے بلوچ کی نصیحت از علامہ محمد  اقبال

اردو زبان میں لفظ چی کی اضافت کسی شے کو چھوٹا ظاہر کرنے کے لئے استعمال ہوتی ہے۔ مثلاً دیگ سے دیگچی  یا پھر صندوق سے صندوقچی۔ اسی ترکیب میں سیلاب چی کا مطلب ہو گا وہ چھوٹی جگہ جہاں پانی کا بہاؤ ہو۔  قرونِ وسطی میں ہاتھ دھونے کے لئے پانی کے طشت کو ایک اسٹینڈ پر رکھا جاتا تھا۔  ہاتھوں کو اس میں ڈبو کر صاف کیا جاتا تھا۔ جب پانی آلودہ ہو جاتا تو پھر اس کو گرا کر نیا پانی اس میں ڈال دیا جاتا تھا۔ یہ طشت اپنے اسٹینڈ سے جدا ہو جاتا تھا اور اس کی جگہ نیا طشت رکھ دیا جاتا تھا۔ عام طور پر یہ ہسپتالوں میں مریضوں کے پاس استادہ ہوتا تاکہ طبیب اس میں اپنے ہاتھ دھو سکے۔ یہی طریقہِ استعمال گھروں میں رائج ہوا۔ چونکہ برِ صغیر میں فارسی زبان کا بہت اثر تھا اسی لئے اس آلے کو سیلاب چی کہا جانے لگا۔ رفتہ رفتہ سیلاب چی، سیلفچی بنا اور پھر سلفشی بن گیا۔ جب گھروں میں نلوں کے ذریعے پانی کی ترسیل شروع ہوئی تو سیلاب چی کی جگہ مستقل بیسن آ گئے۔ لیکن عوام اسے بھی سلفشی ہی کہتے رہے۔ اس لفظ کا استعمال کم ہوتے ہوتے بالکل ختم ہو گیا۔ آج کل سیلاب چی کے لئے انگریزی کا لفظ سنک یا بیسن استعمال ہوتا ہے۔  سیلاب چی کے مترادفات (ہم معنی الفاظ) میں تسلا، چلمچی، لگن، طشت جیسے الفاظ ہیں

 ہمیں اپنی روز مرہ گفتگو میں سنک یا بیسن کی بجائے سلفشی یا سلفچی کا استعمال از سرِ نو شروع کرنا چاہیے۔ اہلِ زبان کو تخلیقِ ادب میں لفظ سیلاب چی کو فروغ دینا چاہیے۔

برامدہ

برامدہ فارسی زبان کا لفظ ہے۔ یہ بر آمد سے نکلا ہے۔ بر کے معنی ‘ باہر‘ کے ہیں (لفظ بیرون بھی اسی معنوں میں استعمال ہوتا ہے) اور آمد کے معنی ‘ آنے‘ کے ہیں۔ یعنی باہر آنا۔  لہذا برامدہ اس جگہ کو کہتے ہیں جو مکان سے باہر آنے پر موجود ہو۔

A Pic of Arched Verandah lined by timber roof. Pic Source: Tawarikh Khwani

برامدہ  دراصل ‘‘مکان کے سامنے بغیر دروازوں کا کمرہ‘‘ کے معنی میں استعمال ہوتا تھا۔ صحن(مکان کا ہو حصہ جو بغیر چھت کے ہو) اور گھر (مکان کا چھت والا حصہ) کے درمیان ایک مستطیل رقبہ ہوتا تھا جس پر کم اونچائی والی چھت ہوتی تھی۔ گھر والے کمروں سے نکل کر پہلے برامدے سے گزرتے اور پھر صحن میں آتے۔ سن ۸۰  کی دہائی تک ہر چھوٹے بڑے گھر میں برامدہ ہوتا تھا لیکن آج کل صرف بڑی کوٹھیوں تک محدود ہو کر رہ گیا ہے۔ انگریز جب برِ صغیر آئے تو انہوں نے برامدے کے تصور کو فروغ دیا اور جتنی بھی سرکاری عمارات بنوائیں ان میں برامدے ضرور بنوائے۔ اسی لئے انگریزی زبان میں برامدے کے لیۓ ویرانڈا لفظ  استعمال ہوتا ہے۔ برامدہ انگریزوں کے لئے ایک پل کا کام دیتا تھا جسے وہ محکوم عوام سے رابطے کے لئے استعمال کرتے تھے

(Reference: Domestic Interiors: Representing Homes from the Victorians to the Moderns edited by Georgina Downey)

برامدہ ایک مفید خیال تھا۔ گھروں میں اس کی بناوٹ کا خاص خیال رکھا جاتا۔ سردیوں میں یہ سن روم   کا کام دیتا اور گرمیوں میں سایہ دار جگہ کے طور پر استعمال ہوتا تھا۔ بارش ہو، ژالہ باری، یا پھر برفباری،  بچے بڑے سب برامدے میں کرسیوں پر بیٹھ کر چائے کے ایک کپ کے ساتھ اس موسم سے لطف اندوز ہوتے تھے۔ گھر کے بزرگ برامدے میں بیٹھ کر صبح سویرے اخبار پڑھتے۔ رات کو اگر بارش آ جاتی تو گھر والے چار پائیاں  صحن سے اٹھا کر برامدے میں ڈال کر سو جاتے۔  سردیوں کی آمد سے پہلے کے موسم میں بھی رات کو برامدے میں چار پائیاں رکھی جاتیں کیونکہ زیادہ سردی کی وجہ سے رات کو کھلے آسمان تلے سونا بہت مشکل ہوتا تھا۔ لوگوں نے سیکیورٹی خدشات کے پیشِ نظر برامدے بنانا ترک کر دئیے۔ برامدے کا تصور اب کار پورچ  (Car porch) تک محدود ہو چکا ہے۔ برامدہ کے مترادفات میں لفظ ڈیوڑھی، دہلیز، غلام گردش، راہداری وغیرہ شامل ہیں لیکن یہ تمام الفاظ برامدہ کے حقیقی متبادل نہیں۔

‘‘ایک بار داغ اپنے شاگرد کنور اعتماد علی خان کے گھر گئے، مکان کے برامدے میں جگہ جگہ پنجرے لٹکے ہوئے تھے جن میں طوطے، بلبلیں، اور خوش نوا پرندے بند تھے۔ کنور صاحب کے چھ سالہ بچے نے ایک بلبل نکال کر اس کا پاؤں ڈور سے باندھ کر اڑانے لگا، دونوں بچے کی اس حرکت کو دیکھ رہے تھے۔ کنور صاحب پر گو شاعر تھے فوراً داغ کی طرف دیکھ کر مصرع پڑھا:۔ پر کے بدلے پاؤں باندھا بلبلِ ناشاد کا

مرزا نے فوراً گرہ لگائی:۔ کھیل کے دن ہیں لڑکپن ہے ابھی صیاد کا‘‘

Urdu ke Gum-gashta Alfaz-I

By Syed Yusuf Kazmi

اردو زبان کے گم گشتہ الفاظ

‘‘! فرمائشی فلمی نغموں کا پروگرام  لے کر آپ کی میزبان حاضر خدمت ہے۔ سبھی سننے والے سامعین کو میرا پر خلوص آداب۔ سامعین کرام. آج کا پہلا گیت ہم نے چنا ہے فلم اصلی نقلی سے۔  اس گیت کی نغمہ نگاری کی ہے حسرت جئے پوری نے۔ طرز بنائی ہے شنکر جئے کشن نے اور اس گیت کو اپنے مدھر سروں  میں بکھیرا ہے محمد رفیع اور لتا منگیشکر نے۔  آئیے آپ سب کی سماعتوں  کی نذر کرتے ہیں یہ گیت’’۔

اردو  زبان کی چاشنی کی ایسی خوبصورت بازگشت اب یا تو ریڈیو پر کہیں کہیں سنائی دیتی ہے یا اردو ادب کی  دبیز  کتب کے صفحات میں دم توڑتی دکھائی دیتی ہے۔   عرصہ دراز سے لوگوں نے ریڈیو سننا چھوڑ دیا اور ادب کے لئے کسی کے پاس  وقت نہیں بچا۔ لہذا  اردو کے کثیر الفاظ عوام الناس کے ذہن ہائے عالیہ سے محو ہو تے جا رہے ہیں۔ اسی خیال کو لے کر ہم نے اردو  زبان کے کچھ ایسے الفاظ منتخب کیے ہیں جن کا استعمال عام آدمی کی بول چال میں اب بہت کم ہو گیا ہے یا بالکل ہی ناپید ہو گیا ہے۔ آئیے  شروعات کرتے ہیں  ایسے الفاظ سے جن کا تعلق درس و تدریس سے ہے۔

قلم، تختی, دوات، روشنائی، سلیٹ

‘‘قلم‘‘ عربی لغت کا لفظ ہے۔ اردو زبان میں اس لفظ کا استعمال  روشنائی سے لکھنے والے اس آلے کے لیے ہوتا ہے جو  بانس یا سرکنڈے (عرف عام میں کانے کا پودا)  سے تراش کر تیار کیا جاتا ہے۔ اس کی دھار بنانے

Qalam, Pic Source: Wikiimages

کے لیے بانس یا سرکنڈے  کی مناسب ٹہنی کو  چاقو کی مدد سے خاص طریقے سے  ترچھا کاٹا جاتا تھا۔ پھر قط بنانے کے لئے دھار کی بائیں سائیڈ چھوٹی رکھی جاتی تھی۔  آج کل قلم کی جگہ لفظ ‘‘Pen ‘‘ کا استعمال ہوتا ہے۔ قلم کا استعمال نہ ہونا ہی اس لفظ کے معدوم ہونے کا سبب ہے۔ اگرچہ جدید دور میں کیلی گرافی کے لیے  قلم کا استعمال ضرور ہو رہا ہے لیکن وہ دھات سے تیار کردہ آلہ ہے جو عام Fountain pen  سے متشابہ  ہے سوائے  اس کی قط یا نوک ( Nib) کے جو پرانے قلم کی مانند ہوتی ہے۔ تاریخ میں قلم اپنی ہئیت تبدیل کرتا رہا ہے لیکن لفظ قلم تواتر کے ساتھ اردو زبان میں  رائج رہا ہے۔ گزشتہ تین دہائیوں میں مسلسل کم سنائی دے رہا ہے اور اب بالکل ہی گمنام ہو چکا ہے۔ اگرچہ شاعر اور ادیب حضرات نے اس لفظ کو آج بھی زندہ رکھا ہوا ہے۔ اس کی ایک وجہ یہ بھی ہے کہ اردو زبان میں قلم کا کوئی جاندار مترادف لفظ موجود نہیں ہے۔  بقول حبیب جالب؎

میرے ہاتھ میں قلم ہے، میرے ذہن میں اجالا

مجھے کیا دبا سکے گا کوئی ظلمتوں کا پالا

مجھے فکرِ امنِ عالم تجھے اپنی ذات کا غم

میں طلوع ہو رہا ہوں تو غروب ہونے والا

دوسرا لفظ ہے ’’تختی’’۔ اس لفظ کا ماخذ تخت ہے جو کہ فارسی زبان میں لکڑی کے بڑے ٹکڑے کو کہتے ہیں۔ ہم سب نے لفظ تختہ سیاہ (Black board)  ضرور سنا ہو گا جو لکڑی سے بنا مستطیل تختہ کلاس میں سامنے دیوار پر آویزاں ہوتا تھا اور اس پر چاک کی مدد سے لکھا جاتا تھا۔ اس ترکیب میں تختی کا مطلب لکڑی کا چھوٹا ٹکڑا ہے۔ تختی دراصل لکڑی کا ایک  مستطیل شکل کا ٹکڑا ہوتا ہے جس کے ساتھ ایک دستہ (عرف عام میں تختی کا کان) لگا ہوتا ہے۔ تختی پر قلم کی مدد سے لکھا جاتا تھا اور جو کام آ ج کل کاپی (Notebook) پر کیا جاتا ہے، تقریباً ۵۰ سال قبل وہ تختی پر کیا جاتا تھا۔ تختی پر فٹ (foot, ruler) کی مدد سے افقی خطوط کھینچے جاتے تھے جن کے اوپر حروف یا عبارات لکھی جاتی تھیں۔ جب تختی لکھائی سے بھر جاتی تھی تو اسے استاد کو دکھا کر پانی سے دھویا جاتا تھا اور پھر  گاچی کی مدد سے دوبارہ قابل استعمال بنایا جاتا تھا۔ تختی لکھنے کا عمل بچوں میں قدرتی طور پر اردو رسم الخط میں خوش خطی کا رجحان پیدا کرتا تھا۔ جدید سائینسی ایجادات اور کمپیوٹر نے اس فن اور اس لفظ کو تقریباً ختم کر دیا ہے۔

Takhti Pic source: Wikiimages

مرے بستے کے اندر جیب ہوتی تھی

اسی میں ایک موٹی اور اک پتلی قلم ہوتی

بڑی باجی سیاہی گھول کر بوتل میں بھر دیتی

بڑے ڈھکن کی وہ چھوٹی سی بوتل

اک ہفتے بھر کا کوٹا تھی

مجھے ہر روز تختی پوتنا، دھونا، سکھانا

اور پھر گاچی کا اک چھوٹا سا ٹکڑا منہ میں رکھ کے

اپنی تختی کے سکھانے کے لیے

اک گیت گانا لطف دیتا تھا    (ثمینہ تبسم کی نظم ’’بستہ’’ سے کچھ اشعار)

دوات عربی لفظ ہے جس کے معنی ہیں روشنائی رکھنے کا  ظرف۔ اردو ادب میں اس کا استعمال ١٥٦٤ء میں “شوقی حسن (سہ ماہی اردو)” میں ہوا۔(’’http://urdulughat.info/words/14399 -دوات’’)۔ جب ہم نے ہوش سنبھالا تو اس کا  عام استعمال دیکھا۔ مٹی، شیشے، اور پھر پلاسٹک کی ڈبیا بچے روزانہ اپنے ساتھ بستے میں رکھ کر لے جاتے اور پھر روشنائی بنانے کا عمل مدرسے میں ہوتا۔

‘‘بازار میں سیاہی کی کئی قسمیں دستیاب ہوا کرتی تھیں جن میں سب سے زیادہ مشہور ”علم دین کی دانے دار روشنائی“ تھی۔ بچے مٹی یا شیشے کی دوات میں تھوڑا سا پانی اور تھوڑی سی سیاہی ڈال کر اپنے قلم کو مدھانی کی طرح گھماتے ۔بار بار قلم نکال کر اس کے گیلے کونے کو چھو کر مرکب کی قوت چیک کرتے اور پھر مدھانی چلا دیتے۔ سیاہی کی تیاری جب اختتام کی طرف بڑھتی تو ایک بوسیدہ پرانے سوتی کپڑے کی ایک چھوٹی سی لیر اس دوات میں ڈال کر ڈب ڈب کیا جاتا۔‘‘

Pic source: Wikiimages

 (تختی اور تختہ دار سے اقتباس تحریر: ف ب۔ http://www.qaflanews.com/2019/01/31/1898/)  

۱۹۸۰ کی دھائی میں تیار شدہ دواتوں کا رواج ہوا۔ پلاسٹک کی چھوٹی سی ایک بوتل میں خشک اسپنج (Sponge)  موجود ہوتی جو سیاہی میں مخلوط ہوتی۔ استعمال سے پہلے  اس دوات میں پانی ڈالا جاتا اور قلم سے بار بار دبا کر سیاہی کو یک جان کیا جاتا۔   یہ دوات بغیر ڈھکنے کے ہوتی تھی۔

تختی قلم دوات سے پہلے کی بات ہے

یہ عشق کائنات سے پہلے کی بات ہے

شاعر۔ کاظم حسین کاظم۔

(https://www.rekhta.org/ghazals/takhtii-qalam-davaat-se-pahle-kii-baat-hai-kazim-husain-kazim-ghazals?lang=ur)

کاغذ قلم دوات اٹھانے کی عمر ہے

یہ عمر کب ہمارے کمانے کی عمر ہے

 لے آئی چھت پہ کیوں مجھے بے وقت کی گھٹن

تیری تو خیر بام پہ آنے کی عمر ہے

 (اظہر فراغ۔  https://www.facebook.com/mmgh07/posts/1830

 روشنائی لفظ فارسی زبان کا ہے۔ اس کا منبع لفظ ‘‘روشن‘‘ ہے۔ اردو زبان میں روشنائی کا مطلب ہے ‘‘وہ رنگین سیال جو لکھنے کے کام میں آئے‘‘۔ اس لفظ کو اس لیے یہاں شامل کیا گیا ہے کہ اکثر لوگ روشنائی کو سیاہی کا مترادف سمجھتے ہیں۔ ایسا نہیں ہے۔ سیاہی لفظ سیاہ سے نکلا ہے جس کے معنی کالا ہے۔ اگر لکھنے کا سیال سیاہ ہے تو اسے سیاہی کہا جائے گا۔ لیکن اگر کسی رنگین سیال سے کوئی تحریر لکھی جائے تو پھر لفظ روشنائی استعمال کرنا  زیادہ بہتر ہو گا۔ لفظ روشنائی زیادہ تر شعر و شاعری میں ہی استعمال ہوا ہے۔ روشنائی کو خون سے تشبیہ دے کر شعراء کرام نے اس لفظ کو  مرثیوں میں استعمال کیا ہے۔ لیکن ادب اور بولنے میں لفظ روشنائی کو سیاہی  کے مقابلے میں بہت کم پذیرائی ملی۔

Pic source: Amazon.in

یہ کتابوں کی صف بہ صف جلدیں

کاغذوں کا فضول استعمال

روشنائی کا شاندار اسراف

سیدھے سیدھے سے کچھ سیہ دھبے

جن کی توجیہہ آج تک نہ ہوئی

چند خوش ذوق کم نصیبوں نے

بسر اوقات کے لیے شاید

یہ لکیریں بکھیر ڈالی ہیں

(جون ایلیا۔ فن پارہ سے مستعار: https://www.rekhta.org/nazms/fan-paara-jaun-eliya-nazms?lang=ur)

سلیٹ  ایک  خاص پتھر  (اور بعد میں باریک دھات کی پرت) سے بنا آلہ تھا جس کا استعمال انیسویں صدی میں دنیا میں بہت زیادہ مقبول ہوا۔ سلیٹ انگریزی زبان میں ایک خاص قسم کے پتھر کو کہتے ہیں جسے بہت اشیاء میں استعمال کیا گیا۔ اسکولوں میں اس پر لکھنے کا کام ہوتا تھا۔ یہ ہلکی خاکستری رنگ کے  پتھر کی تختی ہوتی تھی جو بعد میں دھات کی پرت میں تیار کی جانے لگی۔ چاک یا ایک خاص قسم کے پتھر کی مدد سے اس پر لکھا جاتا تھا۔ یہاں لفظ سلیٹ کا ذکر ایک اور مقصد کے لیے کیا جا رہا ہے۔ دراصل، سلیٹ سے ایک لفظ نکلا جسے سلیٹی کہتے ہیں اور یہ چیزوں کے خاص رنگ کے لئے بولا جاتا تھا۔ یہ لفظ کپڑوں کی دکان پر خاص طور پر خواتین  بکثرت کیا کرتی تھیں۔ سلیٹ کے ختم ہو جانے سے لفظ سلیٹی کا استعمال بھی ختم ہو گیا ہے۔ اس کی جگہ سرمئی، فاختائی، خاکستری، گرے (Grey)  لفظ رائج العام ہے۔

Pic source: Geo Urdu

میں ہاتھ کی لکیریں مٹانے پہ ہوں بضد

گو جانتا ہوں نقش نہیں یہ سلیٹ کے

اک نقرئی کھنک کے سوا کیا ملا شکیبؔ

ٹکڑے یہ مجھ سے کہتے ہیں ٹوٹی پلیٹ کے

(شکیب جلالی۔https://www.rekhta.org/ghazals/jaatii-hai-dhuup-ujle-paron-ko-samet-ke-shakeb-jalali-ghazals?lang=ur

Hazrat Mullah Shah Badakshi

A short biographic account by Danyal Qadri

Background: The Sufism/tasawwuf is defined by the western scholars as the mystical version of Islam. They were divided among different orders (tariqa) and each of the order is connected with Prophet Muhammad (Peace be Upon him) by the chain of the spiritual guides. It was evolved in early 8th century during the Umayyad’s & Abbasids reign in West Asia & by 10th century moved to Central Asia, Afghanistan, India, Moorish Spain & other parts of the world. In doctrine of Sufism, the Prophet (Peace be Upon him) is regarded as an exemplary model of morality & spiritual guide.  Down the centuries, it transmits the message of love, tolerance & pluralism via poetry, doctrines & following the path of spiritual successor (Murshid). Among the various existing orders (Tariqa) of Sufism, the Qadriyya & Chistiya were among the oldest & widely followed orders across the Islamic world. The former was established by 11th century Islamic scholar Sheikh Abdul Qadir Jilani (May Allah be please with him) centered at Baghdad.

Blessed grave of Hazrat Mullah Shah, Pic by Danyal Qadri

Hazrat Mulla Shah Badakhshi was born (1550) in the village Arkasa (ارکساء) of Badakhshan province of Afghanistan. He was named as Shah Muhammad by his father Mulla Abdi (ملا عبدی) who was the qadi (jurist) of Arkasa. He studied fiqh, hadith, tafsir, Ilm ul Kalam etc under his father and other prominent scholars of Badakhshan. Later he traveled to India in search of a perfect sufi who could connect him with God. In early days of his time, he stayed in Kashmir. It was in Lahore his search for perfect guide (musrhid Kamil) came to an end when he met Hazrat Mian Mir. He became his disciple in the Qadiriyya sufi order. He received his spiritual training from Hazrat Mian Mir and stayed in his companionship for thirty years. After his services & training according to sufi path, he was appointed by his spiritual guide, Hazrat Mian Mir as spiritual successor. The bestowing of succession in Sufism is known as “Khilafa” & this responsibility was given to the one whom the sufi master finds had achieved spiritual perfection. After the death of Hazrat Mian Mir in 1645, Hazrat Mulla Shah began to initiate disciples in the Qadiriyya sufi order of his spiritual guide. Besides being a sufi, Hazrat Mulla Shah was a gifted poet and a prolific author of several treatises which includes the following:

1) Tafsir-i Mulla Shah
2) Risala-i Nisbat
3) Risala-i Murshid
4) Risala-i Walwala 
5) Masnavi-i Yusuf o Zulaikha
6) Maktubaat-i Mulla Shah
7) Divan-i Awwal
8) Divan-i Thani 
9) Rubaiyyat-i Mulla Shah
10) Sharh-i Rubaiyyat

His famous disciples include
1) Prince Dara Shikuh Qadiri
2) Princess Jahan Ara
3) Muhsin Fani Kashmiri (author of Dabistan-i Mazahib)

A serene place in Kashmir was the site of his worship & spiritual training that has been documented as Kooh I Maran. Prince Dara Shikoh & his sister Princess Jahan Ara got build a beautiful mosque & Khanqah for his spiritual master in Srinagar near Chashma I Shahi.

After enthronement of Aurangzeb his disciple Dara was executed. However Emperor didn’t take any harsh measures against Hazrat Mullah Shah & he was asked to leave his Khanqah in Kashmir. He moved to Lahore & passed away for heavenly abode on 10 – October – 1661. His resting place is located at Mian Mir Village (میاں میر پنڈ), Dharampura, Lahore. A colonial era account on Sufi history compiled by Maulvi Noor Ahmad with title “Tahqeeqat-e-Chishti” had cited details of his shrine. It was located in the garden that was famous after his name. The mughal days building & its beautiful ornamentation was lost during Sikh expeditions. Unfortunately, the post partition population explosion lead to heavy encroachment of the area. Today residents hardly knows that the site where they are living near the shrine was once a beautiful “Shah Garden” named after 17th century saint.

Entrance to the shrine, pic by Danyal Qadri

نه چراغیست درین خانه ویرانه ما
روشن از آتش تست این خانه م

Naah Charagist Diraan Khana viranam, Roshan az Aatish ayin khanam

There’s no lamp in this ruined house of mine
It’s the fire of your (love) that lightens this house of mine, Verse by Hazrat Mullah Shah

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نه چراغیست درین خانه ویرانه ما روشن از آتش تست این خانه ما There's no lamp in this ruined house of mine It's the fire of your (love) that lightens this house of mine – Hazrat Mulla Shah Badakhshi (q.s) Hazrat Mulla Shah Badakhshi was born in the village of Arkasa (ارکساء) which is located in the Badakhshan province of Afghanistan. He was named as Shah Muhammad by his father Mulla Abdi (ملا عبدی) who was the qadi of arkasa. He studied Fiqh, Hadith, Tafsir، Ilm ul Kalam etc under his father and other scholars of Badakhshan. Later he traveled to India in search of a perfect sufi who could connect him with God. His search came to an end when he met Hazrat Mian Mir and became his disciple in the Qadiriyya sufi order. He received his spiritual training from Hazrat Mian Mir and stayed in his companionship for thirty years. Finding him achieved spiritual perfection and bring able to train people in this discipline, Hazrat Mian Mir appointed Hazrat Mulla Shah as his spiritual successor. After the death of Hazrat Mian Mir in 1645, Hazrat Mulla Shah began to initiate disciples in the Qadiriyya sufi order of his spiritual guide. Besides being a sufi, Hazrat Mulla Shah was a gifted poet and a profilic author of several treatises which include 1) Tafsir-i Mulla Shah 2) Risala-i Nisbat 3) Risala-i Murshid 4) Risala-i Walwala 5) Masnavi-i Yusuf o Zulaikha 6) Maktubaat-i Mulla Shah 7) Divan-i Awwal 8) Divan-i Thani 9) Rubaiyyat-i Mulla Shah 10) Sharh-i Rubaiyyat His famous disciples include 1) Prince Dara Shikuh Qadiri 2) Princess Jahan Ara 3) Muhsin Fani Kashmiri (author of Dabistan-i Mazahib) He died during the reign of Aurangzeb Alamgir on 10 – October – 1661 and is buried in Mian Mir Village (میاں میر پنڈ), Dharampura, Lahore. #تصوف #عشق #عرفان #شعر #شعر_ناب #قادری #شاہ #ملا #مغل #ھند #پاکستان #لاھور #لاہور #lahore #lahorediaries #sufi #sufism #mughal #architecture #history #india #pakistan #photography #darashikoh #darashikuh #mianmir #mianmeer

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The Legacy of Rooh Afza

Story of a hyperlocal herbal beverage of Indian subcontinent by Rehan Asad

Rooh Afza, a traditional syrup (sherbet) is a beverage of middle class Indian household for summers. From one of the most favorite refreshing drink of common Indian masses to the road side sabeels (stalls serving food & water in Ashura) & bhandara (public offering of food), its diverse usage can be seen in Indian context.  When the month of fasting (Ramzan) came up in the scorching summers,  its a must needed item on Iftar table.

Somehow this Ramzan in India started with absence of Rooh Afza as the syrup has been away from the market from couple of months due to some production issues. From small towns of North India to the by lanes of old Delhi, the repercussion of the devoted customers was felt everywhere. The absence of Rooh Afza was extensively discussed from twitter threads of social media to the print media news papers. Even the story finds the space in Dawn (Pakistan) & middle eastern media giant, Al Jazeera English version.  In context of Delhi, the place of its origin, the author & photojournalist from Delhi Mayank Austen Soofi also shared his post on Instagram.

Purni Dilli Walo Ki Baatein”, a Non-Government organization that depicts the vibrant culture of Shahjahanabad expressed the absence of their favorite beverage during Ramzan.

The beverage with its herbal medicine constituents was born in 1906  by the founder of Hamdard laboratories Hakim Abdul Majid. Hakim Sahab was born at Pilibhit (a small town of United Province ) in 1883, & started his training under the legendary Unani Practitioner, Hakim Ajmal Khan at Delhi. After completion of his training, he started his venture of herbal medicine in 1906. The founder along with his team of Hakims experimented an unique blend of herbal constituents such as Tukhm-e-khurfa (Portulaca Oleracea Seeds) Tukhm-e-kasni(Cichorium Intybus Seeds), Munaqqa(Vitis Vinifera), Chharila (Permelia Perlata), Nilofer (Nymphaea Nauchali), Gaozaban (Borago Officinalis), Hara Dhania (Coriandrum Stivum Green leaves ), along with extracts from the fruits like orange, pineapple, carrot and watermelon. There is also a belief that the name “Rooh Afza” that literally means “Soul refreshing” was taken from the 19th century Pandit Daya Shankar Naseem Lakhnavi Urdu translation of a Persian compilation “Masnavi Gulzare Naseem“.

A celebrated local artist prepared Mirza Noor Ahmad prepared its colorful labels that were printed from Bombay in those days. Even in the early days when bottling plants were not so evolved, the white syrup bottles were used for dispensing. Later the glass bottle came up with designed colored print wrapper of butter paper. Even the creative advertisement were experimented  by using the Urdu verses of eminent poet Saail Dehlavi (1864-1945) on the wrappers.

Jo rang dekho to dilruba hai,
Maza jo chakkho to janfaza hai;
Mahak main phoolon se bhi ziyadah.
Asar main iksir-e-be-baha hai;
Jo is main tafrith-o-taquiyat hai,
Na us ki ghayat, na intiha hai;
Na rooh afza sa koi sharbat,
Kabhi baneyga na ban chuka hai;
-sa’il dehlavi

With partition of India, the legacy of late Hakim Abdul Majid was also divided, as his younger son Hakim Mohammad Said migrated to Pakistan in 1947.

An archival ad probably from fifties when the cost per bottle was 1.25 INR

Back in Delhi, the Hamdard flourished under the leadership of elder son Hakim Abdul Hameed who passed away in 1999. A visionary educationist, he was credited for the foundation of Jamia Hamdard University & upgrading Hamdard laboratories. For his philanthropic services, he was also honored by the Padam Shri (1965) & Padam Bhushan (1991), a third highest honorary award bestowed by Indian government to its esteemed citizen.

The signatory sherbet of Hamdard flourished on both sides of Radcliffe line in historical timeline. With creation of Bangladesh from East Pakistan, the Hamdard laboratories of Dhaka was converted in Hamdard, Bangladesh. This is how the legacy of Rooh Afza still connects the strings of Indian subcontinent.

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Follow: @puranidilliwaley The Partition of Rooh Afza: Established in 1906 by Hakeem Abdul Majeed, Hamdard (meaning "Sympathizer") was a Yunani medicine shop in Delhi's Lal Kuan Bazaar. Around 1907-1908, Hakeem Majeed launched a non alcohoalic medicinal concentrate called 'Rooh Afza' (Soul Enhancer) to combat Delhi's hot loo winds. Packaged in glass bottles with the iconic label by Delhi artist Mirza Noor Ahmad, Rooh Afza contained a perfect mix of fruits, vegetables, herbs and roots all infused in a sugar syrup. It is said that the first consumers were so mesmerized by the taste of this ambrosial drink that over a hundred bottles were sold in a few hours. What started as a medicinal drink became popular as a delicious summer drink all over Delhi. To meet the rising demands, Hakeem Abdul Majeed started to mass produce Rooh Afza at a factory in Ghaziabad, just outside Delhi. Soon this drink became one of the most iconic delicacies of Delhi along with Nihari and Bedami poori. By 1947, Rooh Afza was found in every kitchen in Delhi and most of the places in the United Provinces. With the September riots of 1947, Delhi's Muslims started to flee their homes and started to take refuge in the refugee camps built in Purana Qila and Jama Masjid. Many families were torn apart, as one part opted for Pakistan and the other chose to stay behind. Hamdard was no exception. In 1948, one part of the Hamdard family headed by Said migrated to Karachi in the new state of Pakistan. Hamdard Pakistan was started from scratch in a two room rented space. The magic of Rooh Afza worked, and in no time Hamdard Pakistan became very successful. The creation of Bangladesh in 1971 resulted in a final partition when Hamdard Pakistan gave birth to Hamdard Bangladesh. Courtesy: @thesingingsingh #puranidilliwaley #1947partition #olddelhi #delhiarchives #britishlibrary #roohafza #beverages #foodporn #stories

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The Pakistani version seems to be more dominant in global market as in all the stores across the Gulf countries one can find only the Karachi production of Rooh Afza. The taste from both side appeared to be same except with minor variation.

An archival ad of Rooh Afza (60s from India & 80s from Pakistan)

On the medicinal aspects, the experts from their team claims that its constituents that were based on traditional Indian medicine provides essential electrolytes that plays an important role in functioning of Kidney, Liver & Heart. With time, the research team also worked for increased retention of nutritive components from the extract in the syrup using modern distilling techniques.

Media sources cited that the production has been stopped from last couple of months due to legal issues for the post of chief Muttawali (CEO). The high demands & pressure from the customers due to Ramzan has restarted the production. The major chunk of the profit goes to the educational endowments (waqf) of Hamdard that run an University & many other educational centers. During the month of April, the court has given the decision for the post of  CEO. On various media platform, the company has notified regarding uninterrupted production of Rooh Afza. Its back in market & hopefully it will continue its legacy of one hundred thirteen years.

An advertisement of Rooh Afza in Urdu newspaper Inquilab, Delhi dated 10 May/2019, Pic Source: Syed Ubaidur Rahman

https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=2645235122232662&id=639257026163825

Link for the story of Rooh Afza in Hindi by Facebook page History. 

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