Ahmed Ullah Maizbhanderi
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Ahmed Ullah Maizbhanderi
Universal Sufi Saint
Shrine of Ahmed Ullah Maizbhanderi at Maizbhander Dorbar Sharif, Fatikchari, Chittagong, Bangladesh
c. 15 January 1826
Maizbhandar, Chittagong, Bangladesh
23 January 1906 (aged 80)|
Maizbhandar, Fatickchari, Chittagong, Bangladesh
|Cause of death||Due to old age|
|Resting place||Shrine of Ahmed Ullah Maizbhanderi, Chittagong, Bangladesh|
|Other names||Ghaus-e-Azam, Hadrath Kebla, Gausul Azam Maizbhanderi, Bor Moulana, Faqir Moulovi, Khatemul Olad, Shaie-e-Lillah and Ahmed Ullah Rahmathullah Alai|
|Known for||Maizbhanderi Sufi Order|
|Children||Syed Faizul Haque|
Father: Mohammed Matiullah|
Mother: Bibi Khairun Nesa
Ahmed Ullah Maizbhanderi Bengali: ছৈয়দ আহমদ উল্লাহ মাইজভাণ্ডারী (কঃ) (1826- 1906) was the founder of the Maizbhanderi Sufi Order. Ahmed Ullah as a Universal Sufi Saint, Pir (Sufism) Auliya (awlia) gained the title as Gausul Azam Moulana Syed Ahmed Ullah Maizbhanderi Kebla Kaba (K.A.)[clarification needed] or Ghaus-e-Azam. He claimed to be a descendant of the Islamic prophet, Muhammad(clarification needed). He is also known as Hadrath Kebla, Gausul Azam Maizbhanderi, Bor Moulana (a title which in the local language means; "the senior scholar").
Ahmed Ullah Maizbhandari was born on January 15, 1826, corresponding to Magh 1, 1233 of the Bengali calendar year. Sufi scholar Mohiuddin Ibn Arabi was said to have predicted the birth of Ahamed Ullah Maizbhanderi, 586 years earlier.
Maizbhandari spent his childhood in his native district of Chittagong. After finishing his secondary education, he was admitted to Calcutta Alia Madrasha(Aliah University) of British India, for his higher studies in Islamic religion and philosophy.
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After completing his studies, Ahmed Ullah Maizbhandari was appointed as the sessions judge (i.e. judge for the administration of criminal justice, widely known as kazi) of Jessore, which is now a district of Bangladesh. However, a year later; he resigned from the judiciary post and started teaching in calcutta alia madrasa ( Arabic translation of school) and at a religious college of munsi bo'ali in Calcutta. Along with this pursue, he was engaged in preaching religious teachings of Islam among people and addressing public in religious gatherings.
Ahmed Ullah Maizbhandari became influenced by the spiritual teaching of Abu Shahama Mohammed Saleh Al-Qaderi Lahori, a Sufi sheikh and of a Sufi lineage. He initiated a (Bay'ah) (Arabic for 'promise') to him as a Sufi disciple and later became appointed as his Sufi Order successor (a khalifa). Abu Shahama Mohammed Saleh Al-Qaderi Lahori recommended him to go to another Sufi, Saint Delwar Ali Pakbaz. He then returned home from Calcutta.
In 1276 Hijri, in the summer month of Boishakh at the age of 32 years, he got married to Sayeda Alfunnesa Bibi. As to Allah's will, his wife died within six months of marriage. In the same year, Hazrat's mother got him married a second time with Sayeda Lutfunnesa Bibi. When Hazrat passed away, he had no surviving sons. As his only heir apparent, he left his wife, Sayeda Anwarunnesa, his two grandsons, Sha sufi Syed Mir Hasan and Sha Sufi Syed Delowar Hossain, who are offspring of his late son Mowlana Shah Sufi Sayed Foyzul Hoque(Q). His elder grandson, Sha sufi Syed Mir Hasan, also passed away forty three days after his demise. Before his departure, he handed over Khilafat (Gadi) to his grandson Sha Sufi Syed Delowar Hossain in 1905 at the age of 13. He (Sha Sufi Syed Delowar Hossain) took responsibility to spread Maizbhandari philosophy throughout the world. He (Ahmed Ullah Maizbhandari) also left many saints (awliya), his successor nephew Gausul Azam Hazrat Shaah Sufi Syed Gulamur Rahman known as Baba Bhandari (K) (1865–1937) was one of them. One of his Khalifas was his other nephew Aminul Haque Maizbhandari-(K).(Jiboni O Keramat (Biography) ;Life and Miracles,English Version ).
The term 'khalifa' means a deputy, caliph, successor or apostle of a Sufi sheikh. The Khalifa is to act as an authorized successor of own Sufi Master or Pir. Though, as the founder of (Maizbhanderi Sufi Order), the universal Sufi sheikh Ahmed Ullah Maizbhanderi had millions of followers, affectionate and Sufi disciples (Murid) in South Asia and all over the world. He also appointed hundreds of khalifas to continue his Sufi teachings and thoughts among people. Other Khalifas were from different places in addition to disciples from different religions too. It is thought that, some of them remain un-identified until today as they moved away to different parts of the region, desiring to remain unknown due to their personal requests and desire to which they kept themselves engaged in introspective thoughts and practices. For the first time, a list of his successors was published by one of his descendants, Delwar Hossain Maizbhanderi, in his famous work Gausul Azam Maizbhandarir Jiboni O Karamat (Life sketch of Hazrat Kebla Kaba). In that book, the author expressed his sorrow for such an incomplete list. Meanwhile, many among those of his khalifas became famous later on in society for their works and Sufi activities. As a way to continue what Delwar Hossain Maizbhanderi began, that list was published two more times; once in Noxar Shondhane, the preface of Rahe Bhander Sufi Order as a descending followers apart of the Maizbhanderi Sufi Order and also on occasion of the 100th Disappearance Anniversary of Ahmed Ullah Maizbhanderi. Here, a successors' list of Ahmed Ullah Maizbhanderi is being written, following all those and other published lists.
Death and legacy
He died on January 23, 1906, which corresponded to Magh 10, 1313 of the Bengali calendar. He was aged 80.
He was entombed in a shrine beside a pond near his house. The shrine has been re-built in a more modern design to include others from his family and followers.
Gausul Azam Moulana Ahmed Ullah Maizbhanderi succeeded the spiritual chain of Abu Shahama Mohammed Saleh Al-Qaderi Lahori and appointed hundreds of successors. Some of his successors began teaching their individual Sufi thoughts and practices as they sought to be recognized as a newer Sufi Order.
He was succeeded by his grandson Syed Delwar Hossain Maizbhandari (Dela Moina/1893-1982) to spread his teaching and philosophy to mankind. Syed Delwar Hossain Maizbhandari subsequently selected his 3rd son Syed Emdadul Hoque to carry forward the legacy of this great saint in his absence. Syed Emdadul Hoque is presently the Sajjadanshin of Darbar-e Gousal Azam Maizbhandar and spreading the teaching of Sufi Ahmedullah Maizbhandari (Gousal Azam).
- Dr. Alan Godlas, University of Georgia. "Sufism -- Sufis -- Sufi Orders/ Sufism's Many Paths".
- "Benglali News Media: The Daily Azadi, Title: The ORS Festival of Gaus-e-Azam Maizbhanderi since today, Published on: January 21, 2014, Last page, 3rd column".
- "Maulana, The Free Dictionary by Farlex".
- "the Daily Star: Madrasa education in a modern society". Archived from the original on November 6, 2011.