About the Authors

Dr. Abdul Hai Arfi

Dr. Abdul Hai Arfi Rahmatullah alaih (1898-1986) was a great muslim scholar, a khalifa of Hazrat Ashraf Ali Thanvi Rahmatullah aliah and Shaikh of Mufti Taqi Usmani and Mufti Rafi Usmani . His famous book in urdu Uswa-e-Rasool-e-Akram has sold out many editions in past three decades. Various translations of this book in various languages have also become popular throughout the world.

Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi

Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi was born in 1280 A.H. in the village of Thana Bawan. Commonly referred to as Hakim al-Ummat (‘Sage of the Ummah’), was a giant among the Islamic scholars of the twentieth century. He was a master in all branches of Islamic scholarship including Quran, Hadith, Fiqh and Tasawwuf. A prolific writer, he had more than a thousand publications to his credit. He wrote for the minimally literate as effectively as he did for scholars. Nearly a century later some of his books remain as popular as they were when originally published. Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi spent his entire life serving deen in every field. He passed away in Rajab 1362 A.H. (1943).

Imam Dhahabi

The full name of Imam Dhahabi is Shamsu ed-Deen, Abu Abdullah Muhammed Ibn Ahmed Ibn Uthman Ibn Qayma, who lived in Turkman and then moved to Damascus. He was born in 673 A.H. in Damascus. He moved to Cairo and visited many countries. Before he died, he became blind. He was Hafiz, scholar of Hadith, and historian.

He wrote many interesting books such as Tazkirat al-Huffaz, Islamic Countries, History of Islam, The Biography of Well-known Nobles, The Biographic of Notes of the Hadith Transmitters, Classes of Readers, Prophetic Medicine, Greatest Leadership, Moderate Balance in Evaluating the Transmitters, Mustadrak on “Mustadrak AI-Hakim” Furthermore, he summarized many other books. He died in 748 A.H.

Hassan Sulaiman

Hassan Sulaiman is a graduate of “Jamia Arabiya Ahsanul Uloom” where he studied under Shiekhul Hadith wa Tafseer, Mufti Zar Wali Khan Saahib for his Aalmiya & Takhassus degree.

He is the mureed of Maulana A. S. Desai (d.b.) who is the Khalifah of Maulana Maseehullah Khan (r.a) the Khalifah of Hakeemul Ummat Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi (ra).

Currently a teacher at Jamia tur Rasheed he also delivers bayans in english at Masjid Ashra e Mubashra in Gulshan e Iqbal, Karachi

Maulana Abdus Sattar

Maulana Abdus Sattar is a graduate of Jamia Farooqia and a proud disciple of Shaikh ul Hadith Maulana Saleemullah Khan sahab.

He is the Imam of Jamia Masjid Bait us Salam (Defence Phase IV, Karachi) and the founder of Markaz e Fahmedeen.

He is a mureed of Shaikh ul Islam Mufti Taqi Usmani and delivers spiritual discourses every Sunday after Maghrib at his masjid.

Mufti-e-Azam Mufti Muhammad Shafi

Mufti Shafi was born in 1314/1896. Hadhrat Gangohi proposed the name Muhammad Shafi for him. Originally he belonged to Deoband. He prosecuted his studies in Darul Uloom and graduated in A. H. 1336 at the age of 22 years. Thereafter, in AH. 1337, he was appointed teacher in the primary class in Darul Uloom but covering the stages of teaching quickly he soon joined the cadre of the teachers of the higher classes.

He had had from the very beginning a natural affinity with Fiqh and Literature. In 1350/1922 he was appointed to the Mufti’s post. In 1368/1949 he went away to Pakistan, where, as a member of the Board of Islamic Teachings in the Constituent Assembly, he helped in compiling the Islamic constitution. In 1951 he established a seminary under the name Darul Uloom at Karachi, which is now an important and great center of Islamic learning there currently run by his able sons Mufti-e-Azam Pakistan Mufti Rafi Usmani and Shaikul Islam Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani.

Mufti Sahib’s knowledge was vast and profound and he possessed excellent ability in almost all the current scholastic disciplines. He is an author of many religious books: a stock of very useful books on Tafsir, Hadith, Fiqh and polemics has emanated from his pen. All his big and small books total up to nearly two hundred. Hundreds of his pupils and disciples are rendering religious services, besides the subcontinent, in various foreign countries.

Initially he vowed allegiance to Hadhrat Shaikhul Hind; after the latter’s demise, he resorted to Hadhrat Thanwi and obtained khilafat from him in 1349 AH.

Simultaneously with the work of teaching religi­ous sciences and writing books on them, throughout his life he remained occupied in spiritual beneficence also. He had also had a taste for poetry; a collection of his Arabic, Persian and Urdu panegyrics, elegies and a number of poems has already been printed and published. In Pakistan he held the position of the Mufti-e-Azam (Grand Mufti).

He passed away at the age of 83 in 1396 AH.

Allama Syed Sulaiman Nadwi

Syed Sulaiman was born in 1885 in a well-known Syed family of Desna, a village in the district of Patna (Bihar, India). His father, Hakim Syed Abul Hasan, known for his learning and piety was highly respected in the locality.

The young Sulaiman received his early education from his elder brother. Then he joined the Arabic Madrassa at Phulwari Sharif and later he enrolled himself in the Madrassa-i-Imdadia, Darbhanga.

In 1901, he joined the Dar-ul-Uloom of Nadva, Lucknow, which was recognized as the foremost institution of religious and Arabic education in the sub-continent. Here, he completed his seven years’ Arabic course and came in contact with such eminent scholars as Maulana Farooq Chiriyyakoti, Syed Muhammad Ali of Monghyr, Maulana Hafizullah and Allama Shibli Nomani who were much impressed by his talent, intelligence and diligence.

In 1906, he joined the staff of “An-Nadva”, a magazine brought out by the Dar-ul-Uloom. In 1908, he was appointed a lecturer in the Dar-ul-Uloom, and for two years worked as an assistant to Allama Shibli Nomani, who was engaged in the preparation of his well-known work, Seerat-un-Nabi (Life of the Holy Prophet), the major part of which, in fact, was completed in six volumes by Syed Sulaiman himself after the death of his illustrious teacher.

Syed Sulaiman Nadvi hereafter settled down at Azamgarh to a peaceful life of research and study, which later won for him an immortal place as a historian and scholar. Sulaiman Nadvi, whose life had been an un-interrupted devotion to scholarship and literary pursuit, was called upon to devote his energies to the service of Islam and his country.

Syed Sulaiman Nadvi had started his career as the sub-editor of “An-Nadva”, a well-known magazine devoted to religious research. In 1912, he joined as an Assistant Editor and leader writer of the celebrated “Al Hilal” of Maulana Abul Kalaam Azad. He wrote some of its best editorials, inlcuding one on Cawnpur Mosque incident which electrified the Indian Muslims. But his association with “Al Hilal” lasted two years only.

In 1914, when the Shibli Academy was established and its official organ, the “Ma`aarif” started publication, he became its founder editor. This magazine, during the last 44 years of its existence in Urdu maintained an enviable record of high class articles. It introduced in Urdu journalism short notes and second leaders on important men and matters, called Shazraat.

The greatest achievement of Syed Sulaiman Nadvi was the establishment of Dar-ul-Musannifeen (House of Writers) also known as the Shibli Academy at Azamgarh which became the pioneer in the field of literary and historical research in the subcontinuent. He attracted around him a large number of talented scholars who carried on the literary mission of his illustrious teacher, Shibli Nomani, with unabated zeal. This institution of learning founded in 1914 continues to spread its lustre throughout the sub-continent and during the last 48 years of its existence has published some outstanding works on diverse branches of knowledge. Maulana Sulaiman Nadvi dedicated his life to the service of learning and kept his uninterrupted association with the Shibli Academy, Azamgarh. During this period, he spent an austere life at Azamgarh, busy in writing books which inspired an entire generation.

Syed Sulaiman Nadvi was a prolific writer who wrote books on history, biography, literature and travelogue. His greatest work is the “Seerat-un-Nabi” (Life of the Prophet of Islam) in six volumes which has hardly any parallel in any language of the world. This outstanding work on the life of the Holy Prophet of Islam was started by Shibli Nomani, but the major part of it was completed by his pupil, Syed Sulaiman. This has since been translated into several languages and is the most widely read book on the life and teachings of the great Prophet of Islam. He has made Seerat a new and separate subject in Islamic studies.

In 1910, he wrote another very important biographical work, “Sirat-i-Ayesha” which is the most authentic book on the life of Hadhrat Ayesha (rta), wife of the Prophet of Islam.  His “Khutbaat-i-Madras” is a collection of his lectures at the invitation of the Muslim Educational Conference at Madras on the life of the Holy Prophet of Islam. This has been translated into English and has since been published into several editions.

Syed Sulaiman Nadvi had developed a style which was sober and lucid but at the same time convincing and impressive. It was essentially suitable for his historical writings. He is scholarly and objective in his treatment of history which appeals more to the mind than to the heart.

The brutal persecution of the Muslims in India by the Hindu majority community compelled him to migrate to Pakistan in 1950. The pleadings of the prime minister of India not to leave India could not dissuade him from going to Pakistan where he was immensely needed for guiding the framing of a truly Islamic constitution. On arrival in Karachi, he was made President of the Islamic Taalimat Board, attached to the Constituent Assembly. He had come to Pakistan with an ambitious plan in his mind of establishing an Academy of Islamic Studies in Karachi which could rival the Shibli Academy of Azamgarh (U.P.). But he was not destined to live here long and died three years after, in 1953. His death was mourned throughout the world of Islam and the loss of this great scholar, historian and religious writer was universally acknowledged. His death created a great void in the literary life of the sub-continent.

Syed Sulaiman Nadvi was a great scholar, historian, religious writer but above all he was a great man. Like all true scholars, he was the embodiment of humility and simplicity qualities he inherited from his Shaikh Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi (R.Ah). He was unostentatious and never took pride in his greatness.

Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani

SHAIKH UL ISLAM MUFTI MUHAMMAD TAQI USMANI is one of the leading Islamic scholars living today. Author of more than 40 books, he is an expert in the fields of Islamic law, Economics and Hadith. For the past 40 years, he has been teaching at the Darul-Uloom in Karachi that was established by his father Mufti Muhammad Shafi, the late Grand Mufti of Pakistan. He also holds a degree in law and has been a Judge at the Sharia Appellate Bench of the Supreme Court of Pakistan. He is a consultant to several international Islamic financial institutions and has played a key part in the move toward interest free banking and the establishment of Islamic financial institutions. He is the deputy chairman of the Jeddah based Islamic Fiqh Council of the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC).

Shaikhulhadith Maulana Zakariya Kandhalwi

Hadhrat Shaikh Zakariyya was born in the town of Kandhlah, district Muzaffarnagar on 11th Ramadhaanul Mubaarak 1315 Hijri.

Hadhrat Shaikh lived in Kandhlah until he was two and a half years old. In about the year 1318 he was moved to Gangoh where Hadhrat Maulana Muhammad Yahya (Hazrat Shaikh’s father) until this time lived with Hadhrat Gangohi.

Hadhrat Shaikh Zakariyyah said that during his early childhood he would climb onto Hadhrat Gangohi while he was sitting under a tree and hug him much.

When Hadhrat Shaikh was older, he says, he would stand in the road waiting for Hadhrat Gangohi to come. When he would arrive, Hadhrat Zakariyyah would sing “Assalaamu Alaikum” loudly in the form of a qiraat. Hadhrat Gangohi too would respond with great affection in the same way.

After reaching Gangoh, Hadhrat Shaikh commenced his primary education by a pious doctor, Abdur Rahman Sahib. Thereafter he began Hifz of the Qur’aan Majeed by his father, Hadhrat Maulana Yahya. After Hifz of the Qur’aan, he studied other kitaabs while in Gangoh.

In Rajab 1328 Hadhrat came to Sahaaranpْr at the age of 13 while his father had already settled there two or three years earlier. Hadhrat Maulana Muhammad Yahya had come to Sahaaranpْr to teach Hadith on the insistence of Hadhrat Maulana Khalil Ahmad.

After completing his academic studies when Hadhrat was 32 years, he was appointed on 1st Muharram 1335 as a teacher in the primary level at Mazaaharal Uloom and progressed rapidly to become the Shaikh ul Hadith.

In 1338 Hadhrat accompanied his Shaikh, Hadhrat Maulana Khalil Ahmad to Hijaaz. They returned in Muharram 1339. The search for the subject matter for Bazlul Majhood and recording it were the responsibility solely of Hadhrat Shaikh.

Hadhrat Shaikh had returned to Hindustan while Hadhrat Saharanpْri was still alive. Before Hadhrat Shaikh left Madinah Tayyibah to return, Hadhrat Saharanpْri conferred on him the mantle of Khilaafat in all four Silsilahs in elaborate style. Hadhrat Saharanpْri removed his amaamah (turban) from his head. Handing it to Maulana Sayyid Ahmad, the elder brother of Hadhrat Aqdas Madani, Hadhrat Saharanpْri requested him to tie it on Hadhrat Zakariyyah’s head. At that moment people were loudly sobbing on account of Hadhrat Saharanpْri’s profuse crying. Hadhrat Shaikh also shed tears.

Hadhrat Shah Abdul Qadir Raipْri was present on this occasion. For fear of this episode being publicised in Hindustan, Hadhrat Shaikh fell at the feet of Hadhrat Raipْri imploring him not to inform anyone in Hindustan.

But, Hadhrat Raipْri was not prepared to conceal this episode. He publicised the appointment and its method in Hindustan.

Then too, Hadhrat Shaikh refused to accept anyone in bay’t for a long time. He would refer those who came with the intention of bay’t, to other Masha-ikh.

Finally, on the instruction of Hadhrat Maulana Muhammad Ilyas, he initiated the process of bay’t.

However, in 1388 his eyesight began failing. In consequence he was compelled to terminate that auspicious occupation of his life, viz. teaching Hadith, which was for him the light of life. But Alhamdulillah! Alhamdulillah! After the termination of Dars-e-Zaahiri (teaching kitaabs of Zaahiri Uloom) commenced the engrossment in Dars-e-Baatini (instructing the mureedeen in moral and spiritual upliftment). The number of the participants in these moral lessons increased by the day. The time which was formerly confined to the four walls of Daarul Hadith, was now devoted to the tarbiyat (moral training) and tasfiyah-e-qalb (purification of the heart) of countless people.

Maulana Abul Hasan Ali Nadvi

Born: 6th Moharam ul Haram 1333 H (1914 AD) at Takia Kalan (Daira Shah Alamullah) Raibareily

Education : His education was started by his mother with teaching of Holy Quran and then formal education of Arabic and Urdu was started.

When he was nine years old, his father Hakim Syed Abdul Hai died. (1923 AD). The responsibility of his education then came to his mother and his elder brother Maulana Hakim Syed Abdul Ali Hasani, who was himself a medical student (after graduation from Darul Uloom Nadwatul Ulama and Darul Uloom Deoband).

He began his formal Arabic education under the guidance of Allama Khalil Arab in 1424 A.D. factually he completed his Arabic studies under him.

1926 He got admission in Nadwatul Ulama. He attended the Dars of Hadith by Allama Muhaddith Haider Husain Khan and Sahiyen-Sanana-Abudaud and Sanan-Tirmzee word by word from him.

1926 AD. Session of Nadwatul Ulama of Kanpur. Maulana attended and impressed the one and all by his Arabic conversation. The Arab guest made him their companion on the tour of the city as a guide.

1927 He took admission in Lucknow university. He obtained the degree of Fazil from the university.

He studied the select Urdu literature which helped him in his Dawah work.

1927-30. He learnt English language which helped him to study English books on various Islamic topics and gain useful information directly.

He received the teaching in the commentary (Tafseer) in selected surah from his Sheikh Maulana Khalil Ahsan and studied the complete Tafseer of Al-Quran at Lahore in 1932 by Maulana Ahmad Ali Lahoree.

In 1932 he also stayed few months at Darul Uloom Deoband where he took lessons from Shiekhul Islam Mualana Husain Ahmed Madni in Sanan Trimzi and Sahih Bukhari. He also took advantage of his stay and learnt commentary and Quranic science and subjects. He also took lesson in Fiqah from Shiek Aizaz Ali and in Tajweed as per the reference of hafs from Qari Ashgahr Ali Sahib

Literary Work and Dawah Life

1931 Wrote first article on Syed Ahmad Shaheed at the age of 17 years, which was published in the journal Al-Manar edited by Syed Rashid Raza of Egypt

1934 he was appointed as a teacher in Nadwatul Ulama. He taught Tafseer, Hadith, Arabic literature, History and Logic.

1938 His first book the life history of Syed Ahmad Shaheed was published which became popular amongst the Deeni and Dawah circles.

1939 He journeyed to acquaint himself with the centers of Islamic importance in India in which he met Maulana Shiekh Abdul Qadir Raipuri and the great reformer Maulana Mohammed Ilyas Kandhlawi and kept a continues contact with them and obtained spiritual training from the former and following the later, learnt the Dawah work and the work for reformation of Muslims.

He undertook many journeys for it and continued such journeys for quite sometime.

He was invited by Jamia Millia in 1942 to where he delivered a lecture which was later published by the title of “Deen-wo-Mazhab”

1943 established an Association by the name of ‘Anjuman Taleemat-e-Deen’ and delivered Lectures on Tafseer and sunnah which became very popular particularly in Modern educated persons and persons in Govt. service.

1945 Was selected as a member on the administrative council of Nadwatul Ulama.

1951 He was proposed as deputy Director Education Nadwatul Ulama by Allama Syed Sulaiman Nadwi and was appointed and after the death of Allama Syed Sulaiman Nadwi, he was made the Director of education in 1954.

1951 He founded his famous movement Payam-e-Insaniyat

1955 Editor – The journal Al-Baas (Arabic)

1959 Founded Academy of Islamic Research and Publications

1959 Editor – The journal Al-Raid (Arabic)

1961 After the death of his brother Dr. Abdul Ali Hasani, he was appointed the General Secretary of Nadwatul Ulama.

He was appointed by AMU to recast the BA course on Islamics

In 1963 he delivered many lectures in Jamia Islamia Madina Munawara which were published by the name of “Al Nabuwatu wal-anbiya-o-fee zauil-Quran

1963 Editor in chief of Nida-e-Millet

1963 Advisor – Urdu journal ‘Tameer-e-hayat’

1968 He was invited by education minister of Saudi Arabia to participate in the critical study of the curriculum and system of the department of Sharia. He delivered many lectures in Riyadh University and Department of teaching

He was in the editorial board of the Arabic Journal “Al-Zia” of Nadwatul Ulama in 1932 and the Urdu journal Al-Nawa 1940 and published a Urdu Journal Tameer in 1948 and took the responsibility of editorial of a journal from Damascus in 1959.

He was the chief controller of all the above papers which were published from Nadwa


1935 He travelled to Bombay to invite Mr. Ambedkar, the schedule caste leader, to accept Islam

1939 The first distant journey. He met Ulama and elites. He met Dr. Sir Mohmmed Iqbal. He had already translated a few of Dr. Iqbal’s poem in Arabic prose.

1939 Travelled to acquaint himself to Islamic Centres in India

1947 Travelled to perform Hajj – He stayed for a few months at Hijaz. This was his first ever trip to a foreign land.

1951 Travelled to Egypt. Where his book ‘Maza Khasral Aalam Binhitat Ulmuslmin’ had already become popular and was a means of his introduction in the elite.

In the same journey he travelled to Palestine he visited Baitul Muqqadus and saw ‘Madinatul Khaleel’ and ‘Baitul laham’ In return he met King of Jordan Shah Abdullah.

1963 He travelled to Europe and visited Geneva, London, Paris Cambridge, Oxford and important elites of Spain. He met many a Arab and western professors and delivered many lectures.

1965 He visited Turkey for the first time. He visited Kuwait and other Gulf countries time again. He travelled to Afghanistan, Iran and Lebanon with the delegation of WML.

1976 Travelled to far west (Agiers)

1977 first journey to America.

1985 Trip to Belgium

1987 Trip to Malaysia

1990 Travelled to Burma

1993 Second trip to America

1993 Samarkand and Tashkent

Honours and Awards

1956 Visiting member of Arabic Academy Damascus

1962 The first inaugural session and foundation of World Muslim League in Mekkah Mukarama in which His Royal Highness the King of Saudi Arabia Saud Bin Abdul Aziz and head of Libyan Idress Samosi was present Hazrat Maulana performed the duties of secretary at that session.

1963 At the inauguration and foundation of Madina University Madina Munawara, he was made the member of the advisory council and remained as member till the administration was changed.

Foundation member of the League of Islamic Universities.

1980 Member of Arabic Academy of Jordan

1980 King Faisal Award

1980 Chairman of Islamic Centre Oxford.

1981 Kashmir University awarded Honorary Degree of Ph.D.

1984 Adab Islamic -Inauguration and appointed as Chairman

1999 was awarded the ‘The personality of the year’ award by UAE for which a special plane was sent for the Shiekh to take him to Dubai and bring him back also.

1999 Sultan Brunei Award by Oxford Islamic Center on his work of ‘Tareekh Dawat-o-Azeemat’

Maulana Muhammad Yousuf Ludhianvi

Maulana Muhammad Yousuf Ludhianvi (1932–18 May 2000) was a Muslim scholar and Naib Amir (Vice President) of Aalmi Majlis Tahaffuz Khatm-e-Nubuwwat. He was born in EsaPur, Ludhiana, Eastern Punjab, India.

Maulana Yousuf came to Pakistan in 1947 and obtained early education at Multan’s Khairul Madaris. Before joining Jamia Uloom-ul-Islamia Binori Town, where he had been teaching Hadith, the Maulana had studied at Faisalabad and Sahiwal. He was a pious man.

Maulana Ludhianvi authored over 100 books and many have been translated into various languages. His major works included Aap Kay Masail Aur Unka Hal, spread over ten volumes, and the celebrated and renowned Ikhtilafe Ummat aur Sirat-e-Mustaqeem (“Differences in the Ummah and the Straight Path”). He is best known for using an author’s own writings to highlight internal inconsistencies in the authors ideas. He used the technique extensively against leaders of the Shi’ite sect and against the founder of the Jamat-e-Islami, Abul Aala Mauddudi and specially against Qadiyaniat.

Maulana Ludhanvi was editor of the weekly Khatm-i-Nabuwwat, the monthly Buyyanat, and another monthly LauLak. Through his weekly column for an Urdu daily, he had been associated with journalism for the last 40 years. For the last seven years, his column had been appearing in an English daily as well. Maulana Ludhianvi was also the chief patron of the Iqra School chain.

He was Martyred in Karachi in May 2000.

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