Whoever remembered Hazrat from the depths of his heart,
Became absorbed in the sea of love;
He began reciting then, this verse with zeal.
Salutations to you, Oh Commander of Chishtiya
Khwaja Abu Ahmad-king of the both worlds.
Khwaja Abu Ahmad Abdal Chishti r.a was a great saint and the successor Abu Ishaq, the founder of the Chishtiya Silsilah. The was acknowledge by his contemporaries as an abdal, hence his title’Qutab al-Abdal’( the axis of the substitute-saints). He was the son of Sultan Faransafah, and his lineage is linked to Imam Hussain r.a. His aunt was a saintly woman, and was devoted to Hazrat Khwaja Abu Ishaq r.a. Occasionally the master of the Chishtiya silsilah would partake of meals with her husband at her house. One day he remarked that in the house of her brother (sultan), a very pious child was to be born; he instructed her to go there and ensure that the queen ate no doubtful food during her pregnancy. It was this level of care, even before his birth that contributed greatly to the future wilayah of Khwaja Abu Ahmad r.a
After his birth, his aunt took it upon herself to raise him, with the result that he used to live more with her than with his parents. Whenever Khwaja Abu Ishaq used to visit the house, he used to remark that he smelt the fragrance of sainthood. At the age of seven, he began to attend the Sema gatherings of his future murshid. Seeing this, Khwaja Abu Ishaq said, “(only) lovers should attend Sema, and you are indeed worthy!” The barakah of these blessed words removed all the veils from his eyes, so that nothing in heaven or earth was hidden from his vision. At this young age, whatever he prophesied came to pass, and the great people of his time showed tremendous respect towards him.
When Hazrat Abu Ahmad was twenty, he accompanied his father on a hunting expedition, only to find himself separated from the king’s party. It happened that he wandered onto a barren plain in front of a mountain, upon which he saw forty Auliya Allah standing in the presence of Khwaja Abu Ishaq r.a out of respect. Thus was the greatness of the master of Chisht emphatically revealed to him. Immediately he alighted from his horse and kissed his feet. Then he put off his princely garb and donned the khirqah (woolen robe) of the Sufis.
The family of the sultan was distraught at this turn of events, and the king himself came to cajole, plead and eventually threaten his son to return; to no avail: Abu Ahmad Adbal r.a remained with his murshid and became a Sufi of the first spiritual rank. He used to remain engrossed in dhikr, regularly performing the continuous fast after the fashion of his murshid. It is also reported that he used to complete the recitation of the Quran twice everyday. For seven continuous years, he never missed tahajud , and it was his practice that afterwards he used to make the following dua.
“Oh AllahQ Have mercy on your servants! Forgive the sinners from the Community of Rasulullah swm.” Thereafter, a voice used to say: “ Oh Abu Ahmad! We have accepted your duaa and through it have forgiven ten thousand sinners. On the Day of Qiyamah , they will enter Paradise with you.”
It happened that his father has a large winery wherein he used to store all his liquor. One day Abu Ahmad r.a returned to this place and destroyed all the wine-stocks. When the sultan saw this, he became enraged and hurled a large rock at the saint. However, by the power of Allah it was suspended in the mid-air, injuring no-one. Awed by this miracle, the sultan immediately asked forgiveness from Allah and became a disciple of his son.
Once he was founded by a group of infidels whose hatred of Muslims was so intense that they used to burn alive any that they captured. When they taunted him as to his fate, he replied serenely, “The Holy Prophet r.a has said that fire cannot burn one in whose heart there is true faith.” To prove his point, as he approached the blaze, he willingly laid down his musallah and calmly entered the fire. When the Kuffar saw that the fire did notburn the great saint, they immediately repented and converted en masse.
Khwaja Abu Ahmad Abdal Chishti is regarde as a patriarch of the Chishtiya order. He attained Unity on the 1st or 3rd of Jamad- al Ukra 355 AH and lies buried in the village of Chisht, present day Afghanistan.