HIS POSITION IN THE SILSILA: Shaykh ala al-Itlaaq, Qutb al-Istihqaaq, Mamba-e-Israar, Sultan-e-Tariqat, Sayyid at-Taaifa, Hadrat Shaykh Junaid Baghdadi is the eleventh Imam and Shaykh of the Silsila Aaliyah Qadiriyah Barakatiyah Ridawiyah Nooriyah. He is the Mureed and Khalifa of Hadrat Sirri Saqti Radi Allahu Ta’ala Anhu.
BIRTH: He was born around the year 218 Hijri in Baghdad Shareef.
NAME: His name is Junaid-e-Baghdadi. He was known as Abul Qasim and he was blessed with titles such as, Sayyidut Taaifa, Ta’oosul Ulama, Qawareeri, Zuj’jaan and Lisaanul Qaum.
HIS CHILDHOOD: When he was seven years old, he went to Haramain Sharifain in the company of Hadrat Sirri Saqti. When they reached the Haram Shareef, four hundred Ulama were seated there, discussing the topic of Shukr (Gratefulness). All of the Ulama presented their views during this sitting. Hadrat Sirri Saqti then turned to Hadrat Junaid-e-Baghdadi and said, “O Junaid! You too should say something.” He lowered his sight for a few moments, and then said, “Shukr (gratefulness) is this, that you should not be disobedient through whatever bounties Allah has blessed you with, and you should not use it as a means of disobedience and causing distress.” On hearing this, all the Ulama said together, “O Coolness of our Eyes. Whatever you have said, is the truth and you are honest in your words, and we cannot say better than what you have said.” Hadrat Sirri Saqti said, “O My Dear Son! From where did you learn such exemplary words?” Hadrat Junaid-e-Baghdadi said,”This is through the blessing of your esteem companionship.” [Masaalik as-Saalikeen]
HIS EXCELLENCE: He was a great Aalim and Mufti. In his era, he was ahead of all in wisdom and eloquence. From the beginning, right up to the end of his life, he was loved by all. Everyone was pleased with him as the leader. There is no person that can point even a finger at the Maqaam of Hadrat Junaid-e-Baghdadi. The only people who could not see the station of Hadrat Junaid-e-Baghdadi were those who were blind in faith. He was known as the voice of the people, but he always called himself Abdul Masha’ikh (the servant of the Masters). Many of the Ulama also called him Sultan al-Muhaqiqeen. He had reached very high levels in Shariat and Tariqat. Many great Shaykhs followed his Silsila. He was the greatest Shaykh of his era. He spent time in the khidmat of Hadrat Muhaasibi. Once someone asked Hadrat Sirri Saqti if the Mureed can be more famous than the Peer and Hadrat Sirri Saqti said, “Yes, it is possible. The perfect example is right before you. I am the Peer of Junaid-e-Baghdadi, but he is more exalted than me.”
HIS CHARACTER AND HABITS: Even though Hadrat Junaid-e- Baghdadi was such a great Wali, he was very humble. He always showed great respect to others, even to those who were not as exalted as him. Once he said to his mureeds, “If only I knew that it was better to read two rakaats of nafil than being with you, then I would have not sat amongst you.” He kept fast for most of his life.
BUSINESS: Hadrat Junaid Baghdadi initially did business, and used to sell mirrors. His manner was, that he used to enter his shop, and then read four hundred rakaats of nafil salaah. This, he continue for many years. He then left his shop, and sat in the khidmat of his Peer-o-Murshid. He took a room in the house of his Peer and then spent his time their cleansing his heart. When he used to enter the state of Muraqiba, he would remove the musalla from under him as he did not wish to concentrate on anything. He only engrossed himself in the love of Allah and His Rasool. He spent forty years in Muraqiba (deep spiritual meditation). For thirty years, he stood after Esha until Fajr and make Zikrullah. He used to make his Fajr Salaah with the wudhu of Esha. He says, “For twenty years, I did not miss the Takbeer-e-Oola (First Takbeer of Namaaz in Jama’at), and if I thought of any worldly thing during Namaaz, I would repeat my Salaah, and if I thought of Jannat or the Hereafter in my Salaah, then I used to make Sajdah-e-Sahw.”
HIS EXCELLENCE IN THE COURT OF THE PROPHET: A Buzurg narrates, that he dreamt of the Prophet SallAllaho Alaihi wa Sallam and Hadrat Junaid-e- Baghdadi was also seated in the Mehfil of the Prophet. He then saw that a person came and presented a query to the Prophet SallAllaho Alaihi wa Sallam and the Prophet SallAllaho Alaihi wa Sallam said, “Hand it over to Junaid. He will write the answer.” The person then said, “Ya Rasoolallah SallAllaho Alaihi wa Sallam May my parents be sacrificed at your feet. How can it be given to Junaid in your presence?” The Prophet SallAllaho Alaihi wa Sallam said, “Just as the Prophets are proud of their entire Ummah, I am proud of Junaid.” [Khazinat al-Asfiyah, Vol.1 Page 86]
Once a Sayyid who lived in Jilan, left home with the intention of Hajj. On his journey, he passed through Baghdad Shareef. He thus presented himself in the Darbaar of Hadrat Junaid-e-Baghdadi. Hadrat asked him where he had come from. He said that he was from Jilan, and was a descendant of Hadrat Ali. Hadrat Junaid-e-Baghdadi then said, “Your forefather Hadrat Ali used to draw two swords. One against the Kufaar and Mushrikeen, and the other against his Nafs. Which sword do you draw?” When the man heard this, he went into a spiritual state and began to roll on the ground. He then said, “This is my Hajj. Put me on to the path of Allah.” Hadrat Junaid-e-Baghdadi said, “Your heart, is the special Haram of Allah, thus you should try to the best of your ability no to allow any non-mahram to enter it.” [Kashf al-Mahjoob, Page 119]
HIS LECTURES: Hadrat Junaid-e-Baghdadi spent his entire life, serving the Deen of Allah and His Beloved Rasool. Once his Peer-o-Murshid, Hadrat Sirri Saqti asked him to deliver a lecture, and he said that he did not find it ethical to lecture in the presence of his Peer. One night, he dreamt of the Holy Prophet SallAllaho Alaihi wa Sallam. Rasoolullah SallAllaho Alaihi wa Sallam commanded him to lecture. When morning came, he went to his Peer and found that his Peer was already awaiting his presence. As he entered the Khanqah, his Peer said, “We have all been asking you to lecture. Now the Beloved Rasool SallAllaho Alaihi wa Sallam has given you the command to speak.” He asked his Peer how he had known of his dream, and he said, “Last night I made Deedar of Allah Subhaanahu Ta’aala and I heard a voice which said that the Prophet had already commanded Junaid to lecture.” He agreed to lecture on condition, that there were not more than forty people in his lectures. They agreed and he delivered his first lecture. During his first lecture, Eighteen people passed away. He then stopped his lecture and went back home. [Kashf al-Mahjoob, Page 201]
A SINCERE MUREED: Hadrat Junaid Baghdadi had numerous mureeds, but there was one particular mureed, towards whom he paid special attention. A few disciples were not pleased with this and asked him why he gave preference to the mureed over others. Hadrat said that he is the most intelligent and wise amongst all of them, and it was for this reason that he gave preference to him. Hadrat then said, “Let me prove this to you.” He gave a chicken and a knife to each mureed, and asked them to sacrifice it where none would be able to see them. Each of the mureeds found a very quite and secluded area, and sacrificed the chicken. This one mureed, came back without slaughtering the chicken. Hadrat asked why he did not slaughter the chicken, and he said, “Huzoor! Where ever I went, I found the Qudrat of Allah present there, and I knew that He is All Seeing. It is for this reason that I had no option but to return without success.” Hadrat then said, “Now, did you hear his answer. This is the reason due to which he is so dear to me.”
HIS TRUST IN ALLAH: Once a man presented him with five hundred Ashrafis (coins). Hadrat asked if he had any other wealth with the exception of the five hundred Ashrafis. The man replied that he did. Hadrat said, “Will you ever need any more money in the future?” He said, “Why not Huzoor. There is always a need for money.” Hadrat said, “Then you should keep these Ashrafis for yourself, for you are more needy than I am, since I have nothing, and still, I have no need for anything more. Even though you have wealth, you are still in need of more. I would really appreciate it if you would please take back this money, as I do not take from those who are in need themselves and I believe that My Lord alone is Ghani and the rest of the world are Faqeer.”
HIS KARAAMATS: Hadrat Junaid-e-Baghdadi says, “The greatest Karaamat is to remain firm on the Shariat-e-Mustafa SallAllaho Alaihi wa Sallam.” There is no doubt, that Hadrat Junaid-e-Baghdadi was very firm on the Shariah, and his every action was the reflection of the Sunnah of the Prophet SallAllaho Alaihi wa Sallam.
BEING AWARE OF HIS MUREEDS CONDITION: There was a mureed of Hadrat who used to live in Basra. He once intended to commit a sin. The moment this thought entered his heart, his entire face turned black. When he looked in the mirror, he was amazed to see his condition. He was very ashamed and stayed in doors. After three days, the blackness disappeared and his face returned to its original colour. On the same day, a person delivered a letter to him, which was from His Peer-o-Murshid, Hadrat Junaid-e-Baghdadi. When he opened the letter, he found the following written inside, “Keep your heart in control, and remain respectfully as a servant (of Allah). For three days and three nights, I had do to the job of a laundryman, so that I may wash away the blackness of your face.” [Masaalik as-Saalikeen]
A FIRE WORSHIPPER: Once a Majoosi (fire worshipper) put on a Zanaar (a so-called sacred thread worn by fire worshippers), and then disguised himself as a Muslim, by putting on the Arabian garb. He then presented himself before Hadrat Junaid-e-Baghdadi and said, “I have come to ask the meaning of a Hadith Shareef, which says, “Itaqu bi firaasatil Mo’min Fa In’nahu yanzuroo bi Nooril’laahi” (Fear of the sight of a true believer, for he sees with the Noori of Allah). “Could you explain the meaning of this Hadith?” Hadrat Junaid-e-Baghdadi heard his questioned and smiled. He said, “It means that you should break your zanaar, leave kufr and accept Islam.” When he heard Hadrat’s reply, he was astonished, and immediately recited the Kalima Shareef and accepted Islam. [Tazkirat al-Awliyah, Page 233]
PROTECTION FROM SHAITAAN: Once, there was a mureed of Hadrat Junaid-e-Baghdadi , who felt that he had perfected himself (become Kaamil). He thus, began to live in total seclusion. At night, he used to dream an Angel, which used to present a camel for him. He used to then sit on the camel, and the Angel would take him on a journey of Jannat. He used to enter a place that was very beautiful. He used to partake in delicious food and drinks, and he saw the most handsome people there. After a while, he would return to his home. He reached such a state, that he began to tell people, “I am amongst those who visits Jannah daily.” This message reached Hadrat Junaid-e-Baghdadi. Hadrat then went to visit him, and found him sitting with great pomp and splendour. Hadrat asked him about his claims, and he explained everything in detail. Hadrat said, “Tonight, when you reach this place, you must read Laa Howla wa Laa Quwwata il’la Bil’laahil Aliyil Azeem” That night, when he had the dream and he reached the so-called Jannat, he read as Hadrat instructed him to. The moment he read this, all those in his dream began to shriek and flee from him. He then sees that he is on a horse, and there are skeletons in front of him. On seeing this, be became afraid, and realised his mistake. All that he was seeing was just an illusion of Shaitaan. He immediately rushed to Hadrat Junaid-e-Baghdadi and repented for his behaviour. He also learnt, that for a mureed to be by himself is like taking poison.
HIS JALAAL: Due to his piety and knowledge, Hadrat Junaid-e- Baghdadi became very famous in Iraq. There were however those, who were jealous of his fame. They continuously made accusations against him, and also complained against him to the Khalifa. The Khalifa said that they could not do anything to him as long as there was no evidence against him. The Khalifa then said that he had a purchased a very beautiful slave girl, whose beauty outshone all the women of the city. He thus commanded that she be dressed in the most beautiful clothes and adorned with precious pearls and diamonds. Once she had been dressed, he called her and said, “I want you to go to where Junaid is and remove your veil from over your face and tell him that you want to be his, and that you have become weary of the world. All that you want is to live with him, and for him to help you to gain closeness to Allah.” The Khalifa then appointed a servant to go with her, so that he may be witness to whatever may transpire. The woman presented herself before Hadrat and removed her veil, saying what the Khalifa had commanded. Hadrat Junaid-e-Baghdadi looked up at her once and said something. The woman, could not bear the sight of the Jalaal of Hadrat Junaid-e-Baghdadi and fell to the ground and passed away. When this message reached the Khalifa, he was very sad. He said, “Some people say things about the Masha’ikh which they should not say. The Shaykh has reached a level that he is able to see that where our sights can not venture.” [Shajrat al-Kaamileen, Page 153/154]
GEMS OF WISDOM: Some of his beautiful and wise sayings are being presented, so that we may read and make amal upon them.
- A Sufi is like the earth, that all the dirt is thrown onto him and yet it blossoms into a green pasture.
- A Sufi is one, whose heart is like Hadrat Ibrahim , that it is free from the love of the world and one which is always ready to obey the commands of Allah, his acceptance should be like that of Hadrat Ismaeel , his sadness should be like that of Hadrat Dawood , His patience like that of Hadrat Ayoob , his eagerness should be like that of Hadrat Moosa and in Dua, his sincerity should be like that of The Beloved Rasool.
- Tasawwuf is that which kills you and lives by itself.
- The most powerful relationship, is that of the servant to his Creator, when he tries to understand the secrets of Tauheed, and all roads are sealed to the creation, except the road of the Prophet.
- Do not follow him, who follows the Quran and leaves the Prophet.
HIS KHULAFA: Some of his most respected Khulafa are:
Hadrat Abu Bakr Shibli,
Hadrat Mansoor Abraar,
Hadrat Shah Muhammad bin Aswad Dinoori and
Hadrat Shah Ismaeel Al Aziz (Ridwanullahi Ta’ala Alaihim Ajma’een).
WISAAL: When Hadrat became aware of his passing away, he asked for those present to assist him in wudhu, which they did. They had forgotten to make khilaal of his beard, so he reminded them of this. He then went into Sajdah, and began to weep. “O our Peer! You have sent before you so many good deeds and heaps of obedience. What is the purpose for this Sajdah?” He said, “Junaid has never been in so much need as he is now.” He then began to recite the Quran, so one mureed said, “Hadrat! Are you reciting Quran Shareef ?” Hadrat said, “What better time is there than now, when my book of deeds will soon be close. I am seeing my deeds before me, hanging in the air by a thin thread as it sways from the wind blowing against it. I am not sure if this wind is one of union, or one of absolution. On one hand, I am seeing the Angel of death, and on the other hand, I am seeing the Pul Siraat. There is the Most Supreme Judge, and the path is there. I am not sure of which path I will pass through.” After saying this, he completed the recitation of the Quran. He then read seventy verses of Surah Baqarah. Those present asked him to chant the words “Allah, Allah” He said, “Why are you reminding me. I have not forgotten.” He then began reading the tasbeeh on all his fingers. When he reached the Shahaadat finger (index finger), he lifted his finger and said, “Bismil laah hir Rahman nir Raheem” He then closed his eyes, and the soul left his body, allowing him to travel from this mundane world into the Glorious hereafter. Hadrat Junaid-e-Baghdadi passed from this world, on a Friday, the 27th of Rajab, 297 or 298 Hijri.
After his wisaal, he was given Ghusl. Those giving ghusl wished to put water on his eyes, when they heard an unseen voice saying, “Do not touch the eyes of my beloved, since those eyes that have closed in my remembrance, shall not open before they see me.” They then tried to open his fingers, and the voice said, “Those fingers that have been closed in my name, shall only open on my command.” [Masaalik as-Saalikeen, Vol. 1, Page 308].
MAZAAR SHAREEF: His Mazaar Shareef is in a place called Shaunizia, which is in Baghdad Shareef. Once someone asked Hadrat Abu Bakr Shibli a Masla (religious query) whilst he was at the Mazaar of Hadrat Junaid- e-Baghdadi. He said, “I feel ashamed to answer in front of the Mazaar of Hadrat as I felt ashamed to answer in his presence, for I still feel that his sight is upon me.”
AFTER HIS WISAAL: After his wisaal, a pious person dreamt of him and asked about the questions of the Angels Munkar and Nakeer. He said, “The Angels came to me and asked who is my Lord, and I smiled and said, “My Lord is He, Who took the pledge from me on the first day, thus what need is there for me to answer to the servants, after I have already answered to the King. They Angels then left me and said, ‘He is still drowned in love and is resting in the same love.’”