Shaykh Muhammad Mazhar Mujaddidī Naqshbandī was a venerable master of the Mujaddidi Order in the holy sanctuary Madīnah. He was the youngest son and deputy of Shāh Ahmad Saʻīd Mujaddidī, who migrated to Madīnah after the Indian rebellion of 1857.
Shaykh Muhammad Mazhar was born on 2 Jumādā al-Awwal 1248 AH (September 1832) in Khānqāh Mazhariyah in Delhi.
He memorized the holy Qurʼān by heart and studied the established courses of Islamic sciences. His earlier studies were with Mawlānā Habībullāh. He studied all the six books of Hadith from his uncle Shaykh ʻAbd al-Ghanī Muhaddith, and studied books of Tasawwuf from his father.
He was trained and perfected in the Naqshbandī Mujaddidī spiritual path by his father, and was appointed a deputy and successor at the age of twenty two. After that, he went to Sirhind to receive spiritual blessings of the Mujaddidī masters, and later went for Hajj. While on Hajj, he wrote letters to his father and received appreciation from him.
In 1290 AH (1873), he raised a large three-story hospice for the seekers of the Naqshbandī Path in Madīnah, which was called Ribāt Mazharī. It contained several rooms, including a large library in which he had gathered numerous precious books and manuscripts. After more than a century, this place was included into the present day Masjid al-Nabawī. About 1100 books and manuscripts from this Ribāt are now preserved in other places.
In his stay at Madīnah, he trained numerous disciples from several countries in the Naqshbandī spiritual path. His disciples and deputies came from Uzbekistan, Afghanistan, Iran, Turkey, and the Arabian peninsula.
His biography is not fully written by anyone. Some authors have mentioned him in their books. Shaykh Muhammad Murād al-Qāzānī, the Arabic translator of Maktūbat Imām Rabbānī, has written a short biography of him in the epilogue of the Arabic translation of Rashahāt ʻAyn al-Hayāt.
Shaykh Muhammad Mazhar died on Monday 11 Muharram 1301 AH (12 November 1883) in Madīnah and was buried in al-Baqīʻ close to the blessed tomb of Uthmān ibn ʻAffān raḍiyAllāhu ʻanhu.
He had several children, but many of them died in infancy or young age. His son Shaykh Ahmed Bahauddin was six years old at the time of his death. He was trained in the spiritual path by Shaykh Mazhar’s deputy Sayyid Muhammad Sālih Zawāwī. Shaykh Ahmed Bahauddin was succeeded by his son Shaykh Muhammad Mazhar, who was the last shaykh in Ribāt Mazharī.
Hid daughter Amtul-Jamīl alias Jamīla was a pious and learned lady who lived a long life and died in Rāmpur, India. She was also qualified in the spiritual path and lived her life according to the qualities of perfected Sufis.
Among his perfected deputies are the following:
- Sayyid Muhammad Sālih Zawāwī Makkī, his successor in Madīnah
- Shaykh ʻAbd al-Hamīd Dāghistānī
- Shaykh Ibrāhīm Ghaznavī
- Sayyid Muhammad Makkī
- Shaykh Mulla Nuʻmān Efendi
- Sayyid Mahmūd Madrāsī (Maqāmāt-i Khayr)
He wrote a number of books, including two versions of his father’s biography.
- Maqāmāt Saʻīdiyah. Biography of his father.
- Ad-Durr al-munazzam, written in 1296 AH.
- Maqāmāt-i Khayr (Urdu) by Zaid Abul-Hasan Fārūqī. Biography of Shāh ʻAbdullāh Abul-Khayr Mujaddidī
- مخطوطات ونوادر “مظهر” تفتح جدلية المكتبات الوقفية والخاصة
- Zayl Kitāb Rashahāt, epilogue of the Arabic translation of Rashahāt ʻAyn al-Hayāt by Shaykh Muhammad Murād al-Qāzānī.
- Zikr as-Saʻīdayn Fī Sīrat al-Wālidayn (Urdu), by Shāh Muhammad Maʻsūm Mujaddidī