Sultan Bahoo The Life and Teachings/Research on outward Oath of Allegiance (Bayat) of Hazrat Sakhi Sultan Bahoo
There is a difference of opinion among the researchers and biographers of Sultan-ul-Arifeen Sultan-ul-Faqr Hazrat Sakhi Sultan Bahoo Rehmat-ul-Allah Alayh on his outward oath of allegiance upon the hands of Syed Abdul Rehman Jilani Dehlvi Rehmat-ul-Allah Alayh, because they think that he did not need to have outward allegiance as Hazrat Mohammad Sall’Allahu Alayhi Wa’alihi Wasallam himself took his oath of allegiance spiritually and inwardly and then assigned him to Hazrat Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani for further spiritual training. Moreover, in all his books Hazrat Sakhi Sultan Bahoo has written the words of “Shaikh-e-Maa” (my mentor) for Hazrat Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani Razi Allah Anhu.
Only in Manaqib-e-Sultani, the writer has mentioned Sultan-ul-Arifeen’s allegiance upon the hands of Syed Abdul Rehman Jilani under his saintly lineage. Since Manaqib-e-Sultani is the first biography of Hazrat Sakhi Sultan Bahoo Rehmat-ul-Allah Alayh, so it must be believed and there is not any reason to reject it.
Now we discuss different opinions of different biographers and researchers. Faqeer Noor Mohammad Kalachvi writes in Makhzan-ul-Asrar: “There is not any clue about the outward oath of allegiance of Hazrat Sakhi Sultan Bahoo Rehmat-ul-Allah Alayh.” (Makhzan-ul-Asrar-pg 259-260)
On the contrary, when Faqeer Noor Mohammad Kalachvi writes the Shajrah-e-Tareeqat (saintly lineage) of Sarwari Qadri Order on page 8 of his book “Anwar-e-Sultani” (the Punjabi exegesis of Sultan-ul-Arifeen’s poetry) he writes the name of Pir Rehman (Syed Abdul Rehman Dehlvi Rehmat-ul-Allah Alayh) before the name of Hazrat Sakhi Sultan Bahoo Rehmat-ul-Allah Alayh, thus, contradicting his own statement. Furthermore, Faqeer Noor Mohammad Kalachvi’s son Faqeer Abdul Hameed Sarwari Qadri (who is also his successor) also writes the name of Syed Abdul Rehman Dehlvi before the name of Hazrat Sakhi Sultan Bahoo Rehmat-ul-Allah Alayh, as Pir Rehman in the Shajrah-e-Tareeqat of Sarwari Qadri Order in his book “Hayat-e-Sarwari” on page 132-133 and 219. This shows that he also admits that Syed Abdul Rehman was the mentor of Hazrat Sakhi Sultan Bahoo Rehmat-ul-Allah Alayh. Thus, he also contradicts his father’s opinion.
Doctor Sultan Altaf Ali, who belongs to the family of Hazrat Sakhi Sultan Bahoo, writes in “Deewan-e-Bahoo” that Sultan-ul-Arifeen had no need of an outward Murshid. Also, in the foreword of his book “Sharah Abiyaat-e-Bahoo”, he writes that the Murshid of Hazrat Sakhi Sultan Bahoo was Hazrat Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani Razi Allah Anhu whom he had frequently referred to as “Shaikh-e-Maa” (my Murshid) in his books. But in his book “Mirat-e-Sultani” (Bahoo Nama Kamil) Doctor Altaf Ali changes his opinion and writes: “Shaikh Habib Allah Qadri said to Sultan-ul-Arifeen, ‘O Faqeer! I do not have what you want. You should go to my Murshid Syed Abdul Rehman Gillani in Dehli. When Sultan-ul-Arifeen reached Dehli, he found that Syed-ul-Sadaat Hazrat Pir Abdul Rehman Dehlvi was already waiting for him. He at once, bestowed the eternal treasure upon Sultan-ul-Arifeen.” (page 114)
In the same book, Professor Sultan Altaf Ali writes the saintly lineage of Sarwari Qadri Order on page 120 and 121 and in it, writes the name of Syed Abdul Rehman Dehlvi before the name of Sultan-ul-Arifeen, which shows that he admits that Sultan-ul-Arifeen had sworn oath of allegiance upon the hands of Syed Abdul Rehman Jilani.
In this context, the most rigid opinion is that of Professor Ahmed Saeed Hamadani. He has discussed this matter in detail in his book “Sultan-ul-Arifeen Hazrat Sakhi Sultan Bahoo Rehmat-ul-Allah Alayh (Hayat-o-Taleemat)” under the topic “Shaikh-e-Maa, Hazrat Sultan-ul-Arifeen ke Murshid.” First, he gives the reference of the following statement of “Manaqib-e-Sultani”: “Hazrat Shah Habib Allah Qadri was a famous Shaikh who lived in Garh Baghdad at the bank of River Ravi. Hazrat Sakhi Sultan Bahoo Rehmat-ul-Allah Alayh met him. It is said that he took different tests of Sultan-ul-Arifeen but found him better in courage and spiritual strength than his own self. At last, he requested him to go to his Shaikh Syed Abdul Rehman Qadri Dehlvi Rehmat-ul-Allah Alayh.” Then writes:
Further, he adds, “According to the writer of “Manaqib-e-Sultani” a dervish Sultan Hameed who belonged to Bhakar was his khalifah who accompanied Sultan-ul-Arifeen in his journey to Dehli. When Sultan-ul-Arifeen met Syed Abdul Rehman Jilani, he took him in privacy, Sultan-ul-Arifeen got his ‘Eternal Destiny’ in only one step. Thus, he found what he wanted.”
Then contradicting this statement of “Manaqib-e-Sultani”, Professor Ahmad Saeed Hamadani writes: “The writer of Manaqib-e-Sultani thinks that Syed Abdul Rehman Jilani is Sultan-ul-Arifeen’s Murshid and has also given a Shajrah-e-Tareeqat in accordance. However, before writing the above incident, he has also stated a spiritual experience of Sultan-ul-Arifeen which shows that he got the spiritual Beneficence by the Awaisi way and was already permitted by the Holy Prophet Sall’Allahu Alayhi Wa’alihi Wasallam through Hazrat Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani Razi Allah Anhu to guide and persuade Men of Allah on the way to Reality. The writer of Manaqib-e-Sultani Hazrat Sultan Hamid had heard the tradition of this spiritual experience from his ancestors, generation after generation. Sultan-ul-Arifeen had this experience while he was awake. One day he was standing somewhere in Shorekot, an honorable and dignified rider appeared who held his hand and let him sit on the horse behind him…. This rider was Hazrat Ameer-ul-Momineen Hazrat Ali bin Abu Talib Karum Allah Wajhu. (The proceedings of this incident have been mentioned in SEARCH FOR THE DIVINE TRUTH AND OATH OF ALLEGIANCE). After having presence in the Divine Assembly of the Prophet Sall’Allahu Alayhi Wa’alihi Wasallam and being satiated with the benevolence of the sacred Companions and Ahl-e-Bait Razi Allah Anhum, he was assigned to Hazrat Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani Razi Allah Anhu, for further guidance.”
In “Risala Roohi Sharif” when Sultan-ul-Arifeen mentions the names of the Seven Divine Sultan-ul-Faqr Souls, he writes about Hazrat Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani that:
Meaning: “One of these souls is my Shaikh (Murshid) the True Divine Self, absolute Celestial Light and the Perfect Manifestation of Eternal Reality Hazrat Shaikh Mohi-ud-Din Abdul Qadir Jilani Razi Allah Anhu.” If this revelation is compared to the tradition of Sultan-ul-Arifeen’s meeting with Syed Abdul Rehman Jilani, then the contradiction between the two becomes obvious. When Sultan-ul-Arifeen was directly bestowed by the Divine Light of Essence, he was given the authority by the glorious spirits to guide people towards righteousness. At this point he held the position of the Perfect Spiritual Mentor, so getting ‘Eternal Destiny’ from another ‘Pir ’ makes no sense.
Professor Ahmad Saeed Hamadani proceeds as: “It is also written in Manaqib-e-Sultani that since Sultan-ul-Arifeen Quds-Sir’ru-Hoo was a born saint, he had complete knowledge of The Divine Secrets by birth. Moreover, Sultan-ul-Arifeen himself says, ‘I had no time to get outward education or do hard mystic prayers due to the excess of luminous effects of revelations of The Divine Essence. I always remain absorbed in The Divine Oneness and busy in enjoying the pleasure of the Divine Company.” If he did not need outward education or superagotary prayers, then, he did not require an outward Murshid as well. It seems that just like in the age of cultural deterioration, modern members of different fields and circles were left with following and unnecessarily emphasizing upon the apparent rules of superficial system only, similarly in Tareeqat, the importance of apparent form of connectivity was unnecessarily enhanced. If someone did not have a teacher in poetry, he was considered untaught. Likewise, in Tareeqat, if someone was not attached to a Pir he was considered unguided. As far as Hazrat Sultan-ul-Arifeen is concerned, he did not care about this rule at all nor did he mention anything about Habib Allah Shah or Pir Syed Abdul Rehman Qadri in any of his books. However, he often mentions his above discussed revelation and getting benefit through the Awaisi way. Perhaps his descendants found it necessary to attach him to some traditional saintly lineage in accordance with the specific cultural background of their age, due to which it became necessary for them to give reference of an outward Murshid.” (Page 46-50)
All the research scholars, who are against Sultan-ul-Arifeen’s outward allegiance have their own view points based upon their own knowledge and the books available. Our research is not meant to contradict them. Rather, it is meant to proceed their work. Although it must be stated respectfully that a research scholar just tries to find the truth and it is possible that his research proves to be wrong. Yet, we agree that these scholars are right, as far as, their apparent knowledge is concerned, because Sultan-ul-Arifeen himself states that:
1.Sarwari Qadri is actually the one who swears allegiance upon the hands of Hazrat Mohammad Sall’Allahu Alayhi Wa’alihi Wasallam. All the evil and immoral behaviors are removed from his self and he is blessed with the Divine Favour to adopt the way of Shariat-e-Mohammadi. (Mehek-ul-Faqr Kalan)
2.Some Sarwari Qadri have such elite status that they are blessed with benevolence of Holy Prophet Sall’Allahu Alayhi Wa’alihi Wasallam directly, and then he assigns them to Hazrat Mohi-ud-Din Shah Abdul Qadir Jilani Razi Allah Anhu. He blesses them in such a way that they are never separated from him even for a single moment. (Mehek-ul-Faqr Kalan) Those, who have rejected the outward allegiance of Sultan-ul-Arifeen have based their argument on the Awaisi way. Awaisi way actually exists and we do not deny it. In this way, a devotee gets spiritual benefits directly from the Holy Prophet Sall’Allahu Alayhi Wa’alihi Wasallam or from some saint who has died.