Malfuzat (speeches) of Shaykh Fazal Ali Qureshi Naqshbandi

Following are some of the malfūzāt (speeches and advice) of Hadrat Shaykh Fazal Alī Qureshī Naqshbandī Mujaddidī qaddasAllāhu sirrahū (d.1935). Most of them are translated roughly from the published Malfūzāt of the shaykh which were written by his chief khalīfa Shaykh Abdul-Ghaffār Fazalī quddisa-sirruhū (d.1964).

Malfūzāt of the Shaykh

The shaykh used to read the following verses:

“Pride and arrogance looted three homes: the sayyid, the scholar, the tribal chief,
They consider themselves great, but have forgotten The Greatest.”

The Shaykh was outspoken and would not hesitate to say the truth regardless of who he was speaking to. Once he came to the Sabīl masjid in Delhi (where Mawlānā Abdul Ghafoor Madanī was the imam) where hundreds of people including many scholars came to see his eminence. Many people there had a habit of chewing Paan. The shaykh started watching them anxiously, from one corner to the other, and finally he remarked:

“In our area, women menstruate; but here the men (do), though from the mouth” (referring to the red saliva of a Paan chewer).

The people were so ashamed that many of them pledged not to use the Paan from that day. [1]

He said to his faqīrs:

“Do not listen to the speeches of common scholars whose hearts are ignorant of the remembrance of Allah. Their company will destroy your good beliefs and practices. Listen only to those scholars who have purified their Self with the company of perfected Awliyā and have adorned their hearts with the zikr” [7].

He said:

“If you wish to understand the Qur’ān then observe Taqwā. Taqwā is the name of leaving aside all Harām, doubtful and unnecessary things” [1].

Shaykh Fazal Alī Qureshī once said:

“A saint used to write down whatever he spoke during the day. In the evening, he would review his list: he would be satisfied at the good speech and he would repent from the indecent speech.”

Once the Shaykh said:

Befriend the Friends of Allah, (as) they are attentive to you.

Once he said:

A saint used to say that I have a quality in me that is not in God. Someone asked what it is, he said it is humbleness and humility, and God is free of it.

Khwāja Fazal Alī once told following story:

A murīd of Ḥaḍrat Bāyazīd Bastāmī was traveling in a trade caravan. Suddenly, bandits came and started looting the caravan. All the caravan people called upon God, but to no avail. That murīd called upon his master, and he was the only one in the caravan who was protected from looting. The caravan people were astounded from this. Later, some of them asked Khwāja Bāyazīd about the fact that their supplicating God did not help them, while that murīd’s calling his master for help protected him. Khwāja Bāyazīd replied: he (that murīd) supplicated me and I supplicated God. Since I had a strong bond of love with God, my supplication was granted immediately, while you did not possess that strong connection with God, you were not granted.

Once our exalted master Shaykh Fazal Alī said:

A single absorption (jazba) in the love of God is better than the worship (ʻibādah) of the two worlds.

One Pīr Qureshī stated:

One day while I was in salāh, God talked to me and said: I have granted you the station of belovedness (maḥbūbiyyah). I have granted the highest level of this station to Shaykh ʻAbd al-Qādir, the second level to Shaykh Niẓāmuddīn Awliyāʼ, and the third level to you.

The Shaykh said:

Look! If you hit a police official, the whole government becomes the plaintiff. Similarly, when a murīd sincerely calls his shaykh for help, Allāh Almighty sends a latīfa of his shaykh in his shaykh’s appearance, and that latīfa comes to his aid. And whoever displeases his shaykh, in fact displeases Allāh. The hand of pīr (spiritual master) is like a link in a chain: displeasing him is displeasing his master, displeasing his master is displeasing his master’s master, and so on to the whole chain of masters, to the Prophet ʻalayh is-salām and Allāh Almighty. (p.340)

One day, Qāzī Abdul-Ḥamīd complained to the shaykh that people often reproach me (when I deliver religious and spiritual advice to them). The shaykh said:

“If you are so afraid of reproaches, send them parceled to me. Reproaches are the coat of dervishes, like the Qur’ān is covered with wrappings.”

Amānullāh Khān, the king of Afghanistan

Khwāja Fazal Alī said:

“Amānullāh Khān, the ruler of Kabūl, (former king of Afghanistan) asked the people to shave their beards, otherwise they would be forced to do so. One of our Sufis heard this and said that since he has abandoned the Sunnah, he himself will be abandoned. Soon he was exiled from Kābul and went towards Italy.”

(Amānullāh Khān was the king of Afghanistan from 1926 to 1929. He abdicated on 14 January 1929 due to a popular uprising and went to British India. He died in Switzerland in 1960.)

Allāh’s wrath on the Wahhabi sect

Shaykh Fazal Alī Qureshī, may Allāh sanctify his secret, followed the straightforward and righteous path of the Ahl-us-Sunnah and warned his followers about the newly emerging radical sects in India.

One day, his khalīfa Mawlānā Nūr Muhammad reported to his holiness that Maulavī Sāhibdād Wahābī delivered a speech in Shikārpur and said that the esteem of the Holy Prophet sallAllāhu ʻalayhi wa-sallam is the same as an elder brother, and the Prophet possessed less knowledge than that of Satan and Izrāʻīl (the angel of death).

The shaykh said: the Wahhabīs have bad beliefs.

The khalīfa Mawlānā Nūr Muhammad said that Usūl al-Arbʻa is a book written by Mawlānā Khwāja Muhammad Hasan Jān Naqshbandī of Tando Sāīndād. The author has mentioned that Maulavī Ismāīl Dahlawī has written in a book (Taqwiyat al-Īmān) that for God, all the creation (including the noble prophets and saints) is lower in esteem than cobblers and sweepers.

The shaykh replied: Allāh Almighty says (meaning, Allāh praises His beloved prophets rather than belittling them):

“Verily, Ilyās was one of the Messengers”. [Sāffāt:123]

“Then his Lord chose him (Prophet Yūnus) and made him of the righteous”. [Qalam:50]

The shaykh then said: It seems that Allāh’s wrath has descended on Wahhabis, as they have broken away (from the mainstream Sunni creed).

Ignorant Barelvis

The shaykh said:

(Some ignorant) Barelvis are fanatic Sufis. They do not care about Sharia. I have heard that they are ignorant and zealous about hama-ūst (Unity of God with the creation). They teach the women to imagine young men and tell the young men to imagine young women. They have dishonored the Chishtī tarīqah. One should avoid their company. One can sit with the Hindus but not with these people.

The shaykh is referring to a particular group of ignorant fanatic Barelvis who were known to preach wrong Sufism and claimed allegiance to the Chishti Order. They allowed watching non-mahram beautiful persons of the other sex and young adults, as a means to reach the divine love, and this is against Sharia and against the teachings of the Chishtī masters. This is not about all Barelvis, as many of them are Sharia-abiding and teach the Qadri Sufi Path.

Regarding this ignorant group of Chishtis, the shaykh remarked:

The Chishtī masters have written that the shaykh who perfects a seeker in the spiritual path, owes a single sajda (prostration) by the seeker (this is contrary to Sharia as described by the scholars of Ahl-us-Sunnah). But today these people (the ignorant Chishtīs) allow pedophilia and watching beautiful persons, and consider red shawl and large kulāh (a special hat) to be big accomplishments. This sect has become the worse of all.

These beautiful words of the shaykh remind us that the secular Sufism taught today by some ignorant people is wrong, and anything that is contrary to Sharia can never be part of the real Sufism.

Relating to the extremism of some Deobandi and Barelvi people, the shaykh said:

Deobandi scholars call them (Barelvis) infidels, and the Barelvis call Deobandis as infidels!

The shaykh described the miracles of some saints even after their death in the following remarks:

One of the miracles of Ghaws al-Aʻzam (Shaykh ʻAbdul-Qādir Jīlānī) is that there is no Shia in his descendants. And similarly there is no Shia in the descendants of Mujaddid-i Alf-i Sānī (Shaykh Ahmad Sirhindī). And there is no Bidʻah at the holy shrines of these two venerated masters.  Also, there is no Bidʻah at the shrine of the venerated Khwāja Nizāmuddīn Awliyā.

He said:

Other shaykhs take a seeker to the lower sainthood [wilāyat as-sughrā]. If a seeker comes to this humble faqīr, God willing I will take him to the prophetic perfections [kamālāt an-nubuwwah].

The shaykh told his khalīfa Mawlānā Nabī-Bakhsh of Bāgarjī:

Jazba (ecstasy) is neither achieved with Nafī-Asbāt nor by reciting durood (salawāt). It is achieved only by abundance of (the Zikr of) Ism Zāt.

The shaykh said:

A person took allegiance (to me) at Ishā time (early night). He was overwhelmed by ecstasy and called “Yā RasūlAllāh” the whole night, and died in the morning.

Considering that scholars who do not follow the spiritual path, the shaykh once said:

A scholar (ʻālim) who is distinct in his exoteric knowledge, but is ignorant and devoid of esoteric knowledge, will be considered a hypocrite.

Once someone mentioned a Mawlawī (Islamic scholar) of Daharkī. The shaykh commented:

Many of today’s Mawlawīs are honor-hungry. If they are not shown respect and standing up for them, they become disheartened and unhappy. And the Hadīth says: “arrogance towards the arrogant is fairness.” Therefore, not respecting them is in fact for their reformation (when from the spiritual master, not the common people who must be respectful to the scholars).

Then the shaykh narrated:

Once a landlord visited me. I shook hands with him while sitting. He was so disturbed that his face turned black. The Hadīth says: “Whoever showed humility to a rich person due to his wealth, he lost two thirds of his religion.” If they have five maunds of affluence, the poor have five maunds of poverty (spiritual wealth).


Malfūzāt-i Fazaliya, Urdu, written by Khwāja Abdul-Ghaffār Fazalī Naqshbandī, Ramadān 1433 AH.


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