Muhammad Fazal Ali Shah
The ancestors of Hadhrat Ghareeb Nawaz Khwaja Fazal Ali Qurayshi rahmatullah alayhi migrated with the Abbasi Yalghar from Arabia to Sindh and then from there they moved on to settle in the district of Mianwali. Their settlement became famous by the name of Da'ood Kheyl. Due to being of Abbasi and of Hashimi descent the Shaykh's family was called 'Qurayshi' by the public. The Shaykh was born at Da'ood Kheyl in the year 1270 Hijri.
The Shaykh spent the early years of his life in Kala Baagh were he received education up to Sharh Waqaya and Sharh Jaami. Among his teachers were Hadhrat Maulana Qamar-ud-din Sahib and Maulana Ahmad Ali Sahib Saharanpuri from whom he learnt the Books and studied Hadeeth.
At an early stage the Shaykh had a fond desire to raise a parrot and train it to say good things. But a voice from the unseen said to him "Teaching a parrot will not be of as much benefit as that of teaching the creation of Allah (meaning Man). The heart is a parrot from Allah that should be brought towards His dhikr."
Hence a desire to find a Kaamil Shaykh was born in his heart. The Shaykh was still in his youth when he came into the service and company of Hadhrat Khwaja Muhammad Uthman Damaani rahmatullah alayhi. Hadhrat Uthmaan Damaani rahmatullah alayhi sent the Shaykh to his first Khaleefah, Hadhrat Sayyid La'al Shah Sahib rahmatullah alayhi at whose hand the Shaykh took Bay'ah for the first time.
The path of Sulook was still incomplete for the Shaykh when Hadhrat La'al Shah Sahib rahmatullah alayhi passed away.
The Shaykh then went into the presence and service of Hadhrat Khwaja Siraaj-ud-din rahmatullah alayhi in Moosa Zai Shareef. Hadhrat Siraj-ud-din rahmatullah alayhi taught the Shaykh dhikr from the beginning and took him through all the Asbaaq (stages).
When Hadhrat Khwaja Siraajuddin went to Delhi for medical treatment, he sent for the Shaykh by means of a letter. It was at that time that the Shaykh was given Khilafat, near the area of Chitley, a place blessed with the shrines of Hadhrat Mirza Mazhar Jaane Jaanan rahmatullah alayhi , Hadhrat Shah Ghulam Ali rahmatullah alayhi and Hadhrat Shah Abu Sa'eed rahmatullah alayhi .
After returning from this blessed journey the Shaykh returned to live in Miskeenpur Shareef. The creation of Allah began entering the Silsilah in large numbers. The Shaykh's Mureeds developed great love and enthusiasm. The ignorant began to spread rumours that the tapping of the tasbeeh by the Shaykh was some form of magic. But gradually those same people who had ill thoughts began taking Bay'ah at the Shaykh's hand and soon the whole environment was alight with the Haq of Allah's dhikr. It was not long before the effects of all this spread across India and then rapidly to all corners of the Islamic world.
Whilst ploughing the fields, Hadhrat Shaykh would do the dhikr of Ism-e-Zaat (the name 'Allah') and do so with a tasbeeh in his hands. Often the number of this dhikr would reach eighty thousand.
He would travel 250 miles by foot, to sit in the service of his Shaykh and on many occasions he would travel contentedly for a month or so on the provision of only 2 to 4 kilograms of food. On one occasion he had only a few coins on his person, on this journey the Shaykh survived on a supply of carrots and chickpeas.
But this hardship never ever limited the delight, happiness and joy that he felt upon seeing his Shaykh when he arrived at his destination.
When the Shaykh tapped the beads on his tasbeeh, people would ask him out of curiosity and sometimes with sarcasm "What are you doing?" Hadhrat Shaykh would reply "I am playing, I am an entertainer, come to me and I shall show you how, then you too can play this game.”
The Shaykh was bestowed with many visions and Karaamaat (miracles) but his greatest karaamat was his steadfastness upon the Sunnah of RasulAllah Salallahu alayhi wasallam.
Once the Shaykh was travelling by train and a fellow passenger on the train who was a drunkard, a drug addict and a fornicator who neglected Salaah, happened to sit in the Shaykh's company. Before the journey was over this person became a Dhaakir and was drowned in the remembrance of Allah and Ism-e-Zaat.
The Shaykh would mention this story and would say, "This is the way in which the dhikr of Allah purifies a person."
Once the Shaykh was riding on a horse. As the horse was strolling along, the horse's leg knocked against a person who was lying on the ground. When this happened the Shaykh stopped, dismounted and said to the person "Please forgive me, I am sorry that my horse has hurt you." The person replied "No, I should be grateful to you, because when the leg of your horse touched me, my heart began to busy itself in Allah's dhikr. I find myself to be very fortunate indeed."
The Shaykh once said "It was my habit that I would go out and look for firewood to be used for cooking langar (food) for the people who would come for dhikr. One day I came across a small twig and, seeing that it was too small, I did not pick it up. Allah Ta'ala gave that twig the strength to speak and it spoke saying 'Allah Ta'ala says that He will reward a person for his every good deed, even if it is equivalent to that of a particle. But you have not even considered me an equal to a particle.' Upon hearing the twig I felt very embarrassed and picked it up with the rest."
On an another occasion the Shaykh said "I was once collecting date stones for the Khatam. I left one date stone because it was not smooth and out of shape with the rest. The date stone addressed me and said 'O beautiful one! If I am unsightly then it is my Creator who has made me like this, and you find faults in me. If you have the power then why not make me beautiful, as you would like me to be'." The Shaykh then said "Upon hearing the words of the date stone I began to cry, I kissed the date-stone and placed it with the rest and whenever I would come across it during a Khatam I would kiss it again."
One day a large number of people learnt the dhikr from the Shaykh and repented from their sins. At night on the same day, Shaytaan appeared in his dream and said to him "Why do you have so much enmity for me, that you have stolen from me people who have been my mureeds for many years." The Shaykh replied " Insha'Allah I shall rescue many more people from your lure."
The Shaykh said "One day I was reciting the Qur'an and my hands were placed on my foot. A heard a voice from the Lord saying "When you are reciting the Qur'an, do not place your hands on such a place." From that day onwards whenever I recite the Qur'an I cover my feet with a cloth before doing so."
One afternoon the Shaykh had a dream in which he heard the recitation: "man yuti ishaykh faqad ataa arRasool wa man yuti arRasoola faqad ataa' Allah." (He who followed his Shaykh has followed the Rasool Salallahu alayhi wasallam and he who followed the Rasool Salallahu alayhi wasallam has obeyed Allah).
When the Shaykh would do dhikr in a gathering upon hard land that needed ploughing, many large and hard stones would just crumble and become fine earth. Hadhrat Shaykh would smile and say "Allah has saved this old man from ploughing the fields and made my work easy for me!"
It is a saying of the Shaykh that "Four things elevate a person: (1) Abundance of dhikr, (2) Adherence to the Sunnah. (3) Refraining from sins and (4) connection with his Shaykh."
He also said " When I first decided to look for a Shaykh, I had a dream for 15 nights on the run in which I would see a man who was not upon the Shari'ah. I realised that this was Shaytaan. So beware! If you wish to find a Shaykh then make sure that he is a person of the Shari'ah for if he is not then he can be worse for you than Shaytaan."
Hadhrat Shaykh said "The friends of Allah put great stress on doing the dhikr of Allah, because the benefits of it are everlasting and permanent."
Hadhrat Shaykh stated "If you wish to understand the Qur'an, then adopt Taqwa."
The last journey to Delhi was one of Tableegh. Hadhrat Shaykh fell very ill and in the state of illness was escorted back to Miskeenpur Shareef. On Thursday and the last night before the month of Ramadhan 1354 Hijri (28th November 1935) at the age of 84 Hadhrat Shaykh left this finite world for that which lasts forever. Hadhrat Shaykh's shrine is situated in Miskeenpur Shareef, which is in the district of Muzaffargarh. The Khulafa of the Shaykh numbered 66, the light of Allah's dhikr continues to spread across the world due to the efforts of these pious people.
There is a yearly gathering in Miskeenpur Shareef. Thousands of people attend this gathering and obtain spiritual Fayz.