By Sadia Dehlvi
Jun 23, 2018
Hazrat Amir Khusru
Hazrat Nizamuddin would often say, “Khusrau, pray for my life for you will not survive me long”. Amir Khusrau, the beloved disciple of Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya breathed his last exactly six months after his spiritual master’s veiled himself from this world. This Islamic month Shawaal marks the 715th death anniversary, Urs celebrations of Amir Khusrau.
In the year 1325, while in Bengal with the army of Sultan Muhammad bin Tughlaq, a sudden sadness came over Khusrau’s heart and he sought permission to return to Delhi. Learning of the death of his master, Khusrau shrieked, “The sun has gone down and Khusrau is still alive.” Khusrau blackened his face, tore his garments and laying his face on the tomb of his master, recited his last verse. “Gori Sove Sej Par, Mukh Par Dare Kes, Chal Khusrau Ghar Aapne, Rain Bahi Chahun Des”. (The fair one lies on the couch, black tresses scattered over the face, O Khusrau, go home now, for night has befallen over the world).
Amir Khusrau is remembered as one of the founders of the syncretic traditions of Hindustani culture. Awarded the title ‘Tooti e Hind’, Nightingale of India, Khusrau was a prolific writer of Ghazals, Qasidas, Mathnawis, Rubais and prose in Arabic, Persian and Hindi. He played a central role in the evolution of Indian classical vocal and instrumental music. Both languages, Hindi and Urdu claim him Khusrau as their first poet.
Through his popular riddles, songs, melodies and poems, Amir Khusrau remains a household name in many parts of the world.
Creating many new ragas and fusing Indo Persian melodies, the Sufi poet played a central role in the evolution of classical Indian music. The creation of the Tabla and sitar are attributed to Amir Khusrau.
Khusrau’s friend and historian of Ziauddin Barani records in the Tareekh e Firoz Shahi, “The incomparable Khusrau stands unequalled for the volumes of his writings and the originality of his ideas. In addition to his wit and talent, he is an advanced mystic.”
Living in a time of the Delhi Sultanate amidst political turmoil, Khusrau enjoyed the patronage of successive Sultans of the Delhi Sultanate. However, his heart and soul belonged to Hazrat Nizamuddin Auliya. The mystic bond between the master and disciple is exemplary.
On compilation of his books and verses, Khusrau would present them to his master Hazrat Nizamuddin, who prayed for the disciple’s success. Almost all of Khusrau’s Diwans begin with sincere tributes to the master: “Where ever his breath has reached; Thousands of the mountains of grief have melted away”.
Hazrat Nizamuddin loved Khusrau and called him, ‘My Turk’. He is known to have said, “Khusrau is the keeper of my secrets. And I shall not set foot in paradise without him. If permissible by Islamic law, I would have willed that Khusrau be buried in the same grave as me.”
Impacted by the spirituality and teachings of Hazrat Nizamuddin, Khusrau believed in affection between people of all faiths. Khusrau loved Hindustan, India, with all its fragrant flowers, fruits, vegetables, trees and animals and likened it to Paradise: “The heavens said that of all the countries which have come out of the earth, Among them it is Hindustan that has achieved the height of excellence”.