Shah Inayat Qadiri

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Baba Shah Inayat Qadiri Shatari (Punjabi: شاه عنایت قادري , also called Enayat Shah 1643–1728) was a Sufi saint of the Qadiri-Shatari lineage (silsila) who was born in Qasur, in the Punjab region of present-day Pakistan. Shah Inayat Qadiri is famous as the spiritual guide of the universal Punjabi poets Bulleh Shah and Waris Shah.[1]

Bulleh Shah says about his beloved teacher Shah Inayat:

Bullah has fallen in love with the Master. He has given his life and body as earnest. His Lord and Master is Shah Inayat who has captivated his heart.

Bulleya taira murshad kaamal Shah Inayat Saain!
Tun neewaan jeh sayyad vi ein uchha Saain Araain!

O Bullah! Your able mentor is Master Shah Inayat!
Though you are a Sayyad you still are less and great is the Master who is Araain!

A Sayyad is a direct descendent of Muhammad and as such is held in highest social reverence in Muslims. Bulleh Shah shows his humility in this couplet in Punjabi saying that albeit he is a Sayyad, he still is less than his great master Shah Inayat who is an Arain by caste who are descendants of Ummayads.

Shah Inayat Qadiri Shatari also called Enayat Shah lahori was a Sufi saint of the Qadiri-Shatari lineage (silsila) which is a sufi order branching from The Qadeeri silsila (or chain) known for its close affinity with yoga and other meditative practices. Almost all the Qadri sufi orders trace their path to Syed Abdul Qadir Jilani. He was son of Maulvi Pir Mohammad who came from a family living in lahore but had moved to Qasur where he became an Imam of a mosque. He belonged to the Arain community and earned a living through agriculture or gardening. He also lived in Kasur for some time but, due to the animosity of the ruler of Kasur, moved to Lahore and remained there until the end of his life.

Thousands of devotees throughout Pakistan attend his urs ceremony every year and offers fatiha for the preacher and poet of 16th and 17th century. Hazrat Shah Inayat was a religious scholar, spiritual leader and the writer of several books on mysticism. Dasturul Amal, Islahul Amal, Lataif-e-Ghaibya and Ishartul Taliban are his popular books. He was also the Imam of the Unchi masjid in lahore Bhatti gate. He died roughly around 1728 and is buried near Fatimah Jinnah medical college on Queens road lahore. There is also a Mosque built next to his tomb which is in a shrine and his two sons are also buried next to him.

Quoting from Syed Ahsan Ullah "Great Sufi Poets of the Punjab": " The Wazai-i-Kalaan" gives the year of his death as 1728 AD, during the time of Emperor Muhammad Shah Jahan. He had acquired a good knowledge of Persian and Arabic. As he was born in an Arain house, his ancestry goes back to those Arabic tribes of Damascus who arrived at Indian subcontinent with Muhammad Bin Qasim.[2][3] He had mystic disposition and later he became a disciple of the famous Sufi scholar Muhammad Ali Raza Shattari." He further goes on to say , Shah Inayat "migrated to Lahore where he established an institution of his own. In this institution came men of education for advanced learning in philosophy, Sufism and other spiritual sciences of the time."

"Shah Inayat wrote considerably on Sufism and its developments. His writings were mostly in Persian. He was an erudite scholar whom Bulleh Shah made his Hadi or Peer o Murshid."

Poetic references[edit]

In the "Song of the Saints of India" (Bang-i-Auliya-i-Hind) occurs the following reference;

From the tribe of gardeners was brother Shah Inayat,
He received honor from Shah Raza Wali Allah.
He earned his living in the small town of Qasur Pathana.
The ruler Husein Khan of this town was his arch enemy.
From there Inayat Shah came to the city of Lahore;
Two miles to the south of the city he made his habitation.
It is at this place that we find his tomb.
In 1141 he departed from this world.

Shah Inayat wrote "Dastur-al-Amal" in which he describes the methods of ancient Hindu rishis who were the habitants of Indian subcontinent and were considered passing through these stages as necessary for God-realization.[4]

See also[edit]


  • Great Sufi Poets of The Punjab", by R. M. Chopra, Iran Society, Calcutta, 1999.