Before portraying the life of AI‐Hajj Hafiz Sarkar Waris Ali Shah, it is essential to throw light on the contemplative and mystical element in Islam, the votaries of which go by the name of Sufis or mystics. Since our Saint was a complete mystic of highest and eminent exaltation, it is essential to detail in brief the aim and object of Sufism to understand his dedicated life for common weal and welfare, both in this world and the hereafter. Sufism is a mode of religious way of life and an aspiring effort to uplift one’s soul to reach the proximity of Divine Abode by discarding worldly pleasured and ties which benumb the urge of the soul to join its immortal source. It took its cue and significance from the words of The Holy Prophet Mohammed (peace be on Him) of Islam emphasized and spoke with fervent rapture constitute he fundamental basis of Islamic Sufism. The pious and God‐fearing persons during the heyday of Islam were led to believe that there is a deeper and more inward sense in the words of the Quran. This conviction with a deep feeling of Divine pervasion and instructive guidance from the Holy Prophet Mohammed (peace be on Him) led to the formation of the Idealistic and contemplative philosophy which has received the name of Sufism.
Founder of Silsilla-e-Warsi
Hazrat Haji Syed Waris Ali Shah (ra)
The Divine Light
Intuitive knowledge of God is inherent in Islamic faith. The intention of approaching the vicinity of God is an essential preliminary of true devotion; Hazrat Ali discoursed on the, “Inward light” in his sermons but too much emphasis was not laid on it to give up the affairs of the world and entirely lose oneself in the pursuit of truth. The mystic cult was in vogue in great religions of the world and its devotees discarded all ties with worldly affairs. Due to the chaos followed by the termination of orthodox caliphs, assassination of Hazrat Ali and personal rule of the Omayyad dynasty, the laxity of morals drove earnest minded Muslims to take refuge in retirement and religion. A set of holy men Hayat‐e‐Waris Page 6 of 143 emerged to channel the practice of Sufism in the right direction and free it from abuses crept in its body. They were Saints endowed with supernatural powers. At present their tombs are the objects of pilgrimage to Muslims as well as to people of other religions. Most of the Saints authoritatively trace their lineage to the family of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon Him). These Saints were known as spiritual preceptors.
Concept of Peer o Murshid
In the west these preceptors are called Sheikh and in the Eastern Piran or Murshadan and their disciples are called Mureedan. One becomes a Mureed to his faithful followers at similar to the one the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be on Him) initiated to his faithful followers at AI‐Hudieybiyeh in Sura‐e‐Fat‐ha (Victory). In fact quoting from the Quran, Sura‐e‐Fat‐ha (Verse‐18), “Verily those, who take the oath of allegiance to the prophet, in fact it is an allegation to God, for the Prophet’s hand is in fact God’s hand.” The Holy Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (peace be upon Him) in the tenth year of the Hijrah went to Mecca as a pilgrims for the last time‐his “pilgrimage of fare‐well” it is called, when from Mount Arafat He preached to an enormous throng of Muslims. He spoke to them of all the duties AI‐Islam enjoined upon them; He reminded them that he was leaving in their trust two precious legacies namely the Holy Quran and AhleBait, (his family). After his death and the expiry of the rule of orthodox caliphs there was chaos in Islamic world and the Omayyad dynasty hankering after power revolted against the last caliph Hazrat Ali.
Beginning of the Lineage
Later he was assassinated and they managed to establish themselves as rulers of Islam ending the Republic regime of Rashidun Caliphs. Even they went to the extent of shedding blood; so much so that the field of Karbala was drenched in the blood of the Prophet’s family chiefly his grandson Hazrat Imam Hussein and his loyal supporters. The Holy Quran, the revealed book of God was not respected by the Omayyads and when the armies of Hazrat Ali were victorious Ameer Mawiya played a trick by urging his soldiers to raise the Quran on their spears to cease fighting for arbitration. In Sufism utmost respect is given to the descendants of the Prophet’s family, namely the Holy Saints and the inner meaning of the Holy Quran.)