Khawaja Ahmed Yasawi (رحمتہ اللہ علیہ)

Mausoleum to Koja Ahmad Yassaui (UNESCO World heritage site), Turkistan, Kazakhstan.

Ahmed Yesevi was born to Ibrahim in Sayram at the end of the 11th century. He lost his father at the age of seven and was then raised by Arslan Baba [tr].By then, Yasawi had already advanced through a series of high spiritual stages and, under the direction of Arslan Baba, the young Ahmad reached a high level of maturity and slowly began to win fame from every quarter. His father Ibrahim had already been renowned in that region for performing countless feats and many legends were told of him. Consequently, it was recognized that, with respect to his lineage as well, this quiet and unassuming young boy, who always listened to his elder sister, held a spiritually important position.

Yesevi later moved to Bukhara and followed his studies with Yusuf Hamadani.[8] Upon the demise of Yusuf Hamdani, first ʻAbdullah Barki and then Hassan-i Andākī became the head of Hamadani’s khanqah.[6] Yasawi became the head murshid of the Naqshbandi order when Hassan-i Andākī died in 1160. He then turned this position to Abdul Khaliq Ghajadwani under Hamadani’s advice and moved to Turkistan City in order to spread Islam in Turkestan.[6]

Ahmad Yasawi made considerable efforts to spread Islam throughout Central Asia and had numerous students in the region. Yasawi’s poems created a new genre of religious folk poetry in Central Asian Turkic literature and influenced many religious poets in the following countries.[9] Yasawi turned the city of Iasy into the major centre of learning for the Kazakh Steppe, then retired to a life of contemplation at the age of 63. He dug himself an underground cell where he spent the rest of his life.

Turkish scholar Hasan Basri Çantay noted: “It was a Seljuk king who brought Rumi, the great Sufi poet, to Konya; and it was in Seljuq times that Ahmed Yasawi, another great Sufi, lived and taught. The influence of those two remarkable teachers has continued to the present.”[10] Yasawi is also mentioned by Edward Campbell (writing as Ernest Scott)[11] as a member of the Khwajagan. Yasawi also influenced Turkish poet Yahya Kemal Beyatlı, he said: “Who is this Ahmad Yasawi? If you study him, you will find our nationality in Him.”

The Mausoleum of Khoja Ahmed Yasawi was later built on the site of his grave by Timur in Turkistan City. The Yesevi order he founded continued to be influential for several centuries afterwards, with the Yesevi Sayyid Ata Sheikhs holding a prominent position at the court of Bukhara into the 19th century.[14] There is the greatest influence of shamanistic elements in the Yasawiyya compared to other Sufi orders.
Yesevi authored the Book of Wisdom (Turkic: ديوان حكمت‎, Dīvān-i Ḥikmet), a collection of poems, in Turkic.[3] The book was published in 1905 and 1895 in Kazan.[4]
The Naqshbandi Idries Shah mentions Yasawi’s lineage in The Book of the Book.[16]
The first Kazakh-Turkish university, Ahmet Yesevi University,[17] was named in his honor.
Legends about Ahmed Yasawi
Date palm
Legend has it that a religious mystic, Arystan-Bab, was the teacher and spiritual mentor of Khoja Ahmad Yasawi. It was Arystan-Bab who transmitted the amanat, which was contained in a pip of date palm. According to a legend, Arystan-Bab was an associate of the Prophet Muhammad. One day, Prophet Muhammad and his companions sat and ate dates. One of the fruits fell out of the dish, and the Prophet heard the revelation: “This date is for the Muslim Ahmad, who will be born 400 years later than You.” The Prophet asked his companions who would pass this persimmon to its future owner. No one volunteered. The Prophet repeated his question, and then Arystan-Bab answered: “If you beg Allah to give me 400 years of life, then I will give the date.”[18]

Timur’s dream
It is believed that one night Timur saw Ahmad Yasawi in his dream, where Yasawi predicted glad tidings of the forthcoming conquest of Bukhara. Taking this as a sign, Timur went on a campaign that would indeed be successful. After his victory, he decided to visit the grave of Yasawi and ordered to build there a majestic mausoleum.

Khawaja Ahmad Yasawi or Ahmed Yesevi
Ahmad Yasawī (1093–1166) was a Turkic poet and Sufi, who exerted a powerful influence on the development of Sufi orders throughout the Turkic-speaking world.
Yasawi is the earliest known Turkic poet who composed poetry in Middle Turkic. He founded the first Turkic Sufi order, the Yasawiyya or Yeseviye, which very quickly spread over Turkic-speaking areas. He was an Hanafi scholar like his murshid (mentor) Yusuf Hamdani.
Ahmad Yasawi made considerable efforts to spread Islam throughout Central Asia and had numerous students in the region. Yasawi’s poems created a new genre of religious folk poetry in Central Asian Turkic literature and influenced many religious poets in the following countries.
Yasawi made the city of Yasi into the major centre of learning for the Kazakh Steppe, then retired to a life of contemplation aged 63.
He dug himself an underground cell where he spent the rest of his life.
Turkish scholar Hasan Basri Çantay noted that “It was a Seljuk king who brought Rumi, the great Sufi poet, to Konya; and it was in Seljuk times that Ahmad #Yesevi, another great Sufi, lived and taught. The influence of those two remarkable teachers has continued to the present.”

 Ahmed Yassawi was born in Sayram, now part of present day Southern Kazakhstan, in 1093 and from the age of three, his momentous and epic life journey took on a draught of experience that would become one of the great stories of mystic journeying ever embarked upon.

During his life ‘above ground’ Yassawi became famed as an insightful and spiritual figurehead. He also partook in trade and was successful in that. Between bouts of material success and community leadership he found time to visit the great sheiks and Imams of the day, in his ongoing search and desire for communion with God. 

He also took on the role of family life, and between at least four of five wives, sired two offspring. His son died early in his teens and his daughter was to be Yassawi’s only remaining offspring. As was the custom then, several wives were the norm. Yassawi, a devoted follower of the Prophet (pbuh), he would have been keen to follow his example.

He took on this same devotion, when at sixty three (the age Muhammad (pbuh) died), he decided he could not live longer than him in the world. He therefore committed himself to ‘dying to live’. This saw him remove himself from all earthly ties and go into an underground cell where he was to pass a further sixty three years till his own passing.

It was during this time spent in prayer, communion and contemplation that he wrote his some ninety nine thousand Hikmet. Diwani Hikmet (Divine Wisdom) is all that remains, to date, of his sacred inheritance….

Ahmad Yasawi was born in 1096 CE in Sayram in Kara-Khanid Khanate (now Kazakhstan). Sayram is a town near Shymkent, Kazakhstan. Ahmad Yasawi’s father, Sheikh Ibrahim died in the early years of his age when he was only 7 years old. After which he was taken care of by Arslan Baba. Along with Arslan Baba, Ahmad Yesevi advanced many spiritual stages and became famous in every quarter even in young stage of his life. Another reason for his fame was his father, Sheikh Ibrahim. Consequently, he started to be admired spiritually an important personality.

Ahmad Yesevi later went to Bukhara and completed his religious education from Yusuf Hamdani. After the death of Yusuf Hamdani in 1141 CE (buried in Merv, Turkmenistan), Abdullah Barki became his successor as the head of Hamdani’s khanqah. After him, Hassan-i Andākī became the next one. After the death of Hassan-i Andākī in 1160 CE, Ahmad Yasawi became the next head of Hamdani’s Khanqah. During his period and throughout his life, Ahmad Yasawi played an important role in spread Islam to Central Asia. He also taught a lot of students through which a continuous system of religious education and preach started.

Ahmad Yasawi also played an important role in the field of poetry and literature. His poems brought a new religious folk culture in the Central-Asian Turkish and inspired a lot of poets. Ahmad Yasawi also founded a center for learning in the Kazakh steppe where he himself served until his retirement at the age of 63. After retirement, Ahmad Yasawi spent his remaining life in reclusion. Hasan Basri Cantay states that the famous poet Rumi was brought to Konya by a Seljuk king and also Ahmad Yasawi served Islam during the same Seljuk period. The influence of their service is yet continued. Edward Campbell (writing as Ernest Scott) also wrote Ahmad Yasawi as a considerable member of Khwajagan.

Ahmad Yasawi died in 1166 CE and buried in Turkistan, Kazakhstan. First, there wasn’t any mausoleum constructed there. After almost 200 years during the period of Timurlane (Timur), a masterpiece of architecture was built on his grave by Timur in between 1389 and 1405 CE. UNESCO accepted this as a work of history in 2000 CE. Later Ahmad Yasawi mausoleum was repaired by the Republic of Turkey by TIKA ingenuity. Also, the order founded by Ahmad Yasawi is still followed and Yasawi Sayyid Ata Sheikhs was holding a prominent position in Bukhara court.

It has also been reported that the book of wisdom “Divan-i-Hikmat” is of Ahmad Yasawi as it contains a lot of Turkish poems written by him as well as the dervish of his era. Ahmet Yesevi University, the first-ever Kazakh-Turkish university was established in Turkistan in 1993 after the great Sufi mystic and poet Ahmad Yesevi.

HAZRAT KHWAJA AHMAD YASAVI (quddus sirrahu al-aziz) ( Nanajaan of Hazrat Syed Makhdoom Ashraf Semnani Rahmatullah Alaih)

Khwaja Ahmad Yasavi was one of the most influential spiritual leaders in Central Asia. A Sufi poet, philosopher and a mystic who contributed tremendously to the development of mystical orders throughout the Turkic speaking world.

The people of Turkestan used to call him Ata Yasavi. ‘Ata’ means ‘Father’, and the Turks have used this word to designate their greatest Shaykhs.

many of the eminent Sufis of Turkestan are affiliated to him. many saints have arisen from his noble line.

Khwaja Ahmad Yasavi received spiritual training from one of the greatest Turkic shaykhs, Shaykh Arslan Baba (quddus sirrahu) and later Khwaja Shaykh Yusuf al Hamdani (quddus sirrahu).

When he reached the age of 63, he lived the remainder of his life secluded away, He explained: I have reached the age of the Prophet (ﷺ), sixty-three years, for me this is enough, no need to live beyond the time allotted to the prophet ﷺ. This saw him remove himself from all earthly ties and go into an underground cell until the end of his time on earth. It was during this time spent in prayer, communion and contemplation that he wrote his some ninety nine thousand Diwani Hikmet (Divine Wisdom)

His mausoleum in the city of Turkestan, present day Kazakhstan was built in 1389 by Turko-Mongol conqueror Amir Timur. It continues to draw pilgrims from all over the planet and has become a symbol of the Timurid dynasty.

Al Fatiha for his blessed soul

img_20210531_1637581616445426528374992.jpgThere are few documents about Ahmed Yesevi’s historical personality, and the existing ones are mixed with legends. It is very difficult, even impossible in some respects, to come to a firm conclusion from them. Despite this, the information and conclusions to be obtained from his “wisdom”, historical sources, and hagiographies give an idea about his life, personality, work and influence, albeit epically.

He was born in the town of Sayram on the Karasu, a small tributary of the Shahyar river, which is located east of the city of Shymkent in West Turkestan and empties into the Tarim River. The town of Sayram, also known as İspîcâb (İsfîcâb) or Akşehir, was an important settlement center for a long time. In some sources, it is recorded that he was born in the city of Yesi (today’s Turkestan), which is located in Kazakhstan today. The exact date of birth of Ahmed Yesevî is not known. However, considering his affiliation with Yusuf al-Hamedani (d. 535/1140) and his caliphs, XI. It is possible to say that he was born in the second half of the century. One of Sayram’s well-known personalities, his father, known for his miracles and legends, and Hz. He is a person named Sheikh Ibrahim, who is accepted to be descended from Ali. His mother is Ayşe Hatun, the daughter of Musa Şeyh, one of the caliphs of Sheikh İbrahim. Ahmed Yesevi, who was born as the second child of Sheikh Ibrahim’s daughter named Gevher Şehnaz, first lost his mother and then his father. After a short while, Gevher Şehnaz took his brother with him and went to the city of Yesi and settled there.

Ahmed Yesevi, who started his education in Yesi, had some manifestations despite his young age.He has attracted the attention of his surroundings with his reputation and unexpected extraordinary feats. According to the legends, Ahmed Yesevi Yesi, who came to the sign of Hızır at the age of seven, started to take inspiration from Arslan Baba by getting involved with him. Again, according to the legend, Arslan Baba, one of the Companions, came to Yesi and found Ahmed Yesevi, and Hz. The fact that the Prophet gave the entrusted to him, was busy with his education and guided him, Hz. It is based on a spiritual sign of the Prophet. With Arslan Baba’s upbringing and guidance, Ahmed Yesevî soon rose above ranks and his fame began to spread around. However, Arslan Baba dies in the same year or the following year. After the death of Arslan Baba, Ahmed Yesevi went to Bukhara, one of the important Islamic centers of the time. In this city, he joined Sheikh Yusuf al-Hamedani, one of the leading scholars and mystics of the time, and entered under his guidance and discipline. Upon the death of Yusuf al-Hamedânî, first Hâce Abdullah-ı Berakî passed to the position of guidance, and with his death Sheikh Hasan-i Endâkî. Upon the death of Hasan-ı Endâkī in 1160, Ahmed Yesevi sits on the post of guidance. After a while, he left the authority of guidance to Sheikh Abdülhâliḳ-ı Gucdüvânî, upon a sign given by his sheik Yûsuf al-Hamedânî, and returned to Yesi and continued here until his death (562/1166).

When Ahmed Yesevi was sixty-three years old, he followed the tradition and had his followers prepare an orphanage in the courtyard of his lodge, where he was engaged in worship and obedience until his death. It is not known how long he stayed in Çilehâne, but it is certain that he did not leave until his death and died in the cell. Since the date of his birth is unknown, it is not possible to say for sure how many years he lived. Imam Muhammad b.Ali AlahisSalam Just as the descendants of Ali were called haja , the same name was given to those who were dependent on them. Ahmed Yesevî is also referred to as Hâce Ahmed, Hâce Ahmed Yesevî, Kul Hâce Ahmed because he belongs to this lineage (see HÂCEGÂN ).

Ahmed Yesevi, who is claimed to have continued his miracles even after his death, according to the rumor, enters the dream of Timur, who lived long after him, and gives him the good news of victory. When Timur was victorious, he came to Yesi to visit the tomb of Ahmed Yasawi, whose fame and influence had spread in Turkestan and Kyrgyz steppes. He orders a mausoleum, one of the architectural masterpieces of the period, to be built on top of the grave. In a few years, the construction is completed and it becomes a complex with its tomb, mosque and dervish lodge. Being buried around Ahmed Yesevi’s tomb has a special value for steppe nomads. For this reason, many people buy land around the tomb and prepare their graves while they are still alive. In fact, a person who dies in winter is wrapped in felt and hung on a tree and kept until spring; When spring comes, he is taken and buried around Ahmed Yesevi’s tomb.

According to rumors, even though Ahmed Yesevi had a son named Ibrahim, he died while he was alive. In addition, two daughters named Gevher Şehnaz and Gevher Hoşnaz were born, and her lineage continued through Gevher Şehnaz. As in Turkestan, Transoxiana and other Central Asian regions, many famous personalities who consider themselves descendants of Ahmed Yasawi emerged in Anatolia. Among them, Sheikh Zekeriyya from Samarkand, Poet Ata and Evliya Çelebi from Skopje can be mentioned.

At the same time that Ahmed Yesevi started to lead the way in Yesi, there was a strong Islamization in Turkestan, around Yedisu, as well as Sufi movements spreading all over Islamic countries. The dervish lodges established next to the madrasas were the centers of the Sufi movement. Again in these years, Sultan Sencer, who united Transoxiana under his own administration, passed away (1157), and the Harizm-Shahs began to become a strong Islamic state. Under these favorable conditions, Ahmed Yesevi gained a strong influence among the nomadic Turks living in the steppes beyond Seyhun, in the Tashkent and Syr Darya region. The local community and semi-nomadic peasants were gathering around him, who were sincerely devoted to Islam. Ahmed Yesevi, who is knowledgeable in Islamic sciences and knows Arabic and Persian, explained the principles of Islam and the rules of shari’ah to those gathered around him. In order to teach the etiquette and manners of his sect, he sang verses in syllabic meter in a plain language and in forms taken from folk literature, these poems called “wisdom” were also conveyed to the farthest Turkish communities through dervishes. The content of wisdom gives some information about Ahmed Yesevi’s life. However, it is difficult to determine to what extent they are compatible with historical truths. Despite this, this information in Yesevî’s poems relates to his life, education, However, it is difficult to determine to what extent they are compatible with historical truths. Despite this, this information in Yesevî’s poems relates to his life, education, However, it is difficult to determine to what extent they are compatible with historical truths. Despite this, this information in Yesevî’s poems relates to his life, education,It is very valuable in terms of bringing some explanations about the reputation of sulûk , the rank and ranks he reached.

According to rumors, Ahmed Yasawi had disciples, twelve thousand of whom were in his own neighborhood and ninety-nine thousand of them in distant countries, and many caliphs he appointed while he was alive in accordance with tradition. Its first caliph was Mansur Ata, the son of Arslan Baba. When Mansur Ata died in 1197, his son Abdülmelik Ata took his place, after Abdülmelik Ata’s death, his son Tâc Hâce and then his son Zengi Ata passed to the position of guidance. The second caliph was Said Ata from Hârizm, and the third caliph was Süleyman Hakîm Ata, who gained great fame and influence among the Turks with his Yesevi-style wisdom and legends. Hakim Ata settled in Hârizm and started irşada, when he died in 1186, he was buried in Akkurgan. The most famous disciple of Hakim Ata was Zengi Ata. The main disciples of Zengi Ata are Uzun Hasan Ata, Seyyid Ata, Sadr Ata and Bedr Ata.

Like his master, Sheikh Yusuf al-Hamedani, Ahmed Yasawi is a Hanafi scholar. He received a strong madrasa education and learned Sufism as well as religious sciences. However, like many religious scholars and mystics of his time, he did not stay in a certain field and tried to convey what he believed and learned to the local people and nomadic villagers around him in a language they could understand and in the ways they were accustomed to. As a guide and moralist, his main aim was to try to teach them the rules of sharia, the principles of Sufism, the etiquette and manners of his sect, to endear Islam to Turks, and to spread and establish the Ahl as-sunna creed. Due to these instructive qualities, their wisdom has been accepted by some as poems that were sung away from lyricism and without any concern for art. Islamic Sharia and

Ahmed Yesevî is the greatest name of the Central Asian Turkish world with his intellectual rather than his literary personality, his anecdotal life rather than his historical life. It is not possible to show another personality like him who has been able to maintain his influence in a wide field and for centuries.

Works. Divan-i Wisdom . It is the name of the journal that includes the “wisdom” of Ahmed Yesevî. The fact that the copies of Dîvân-ı Hikmet differ not only in terms of content but also in terms of language clearly shows that they were produced by different people in different places. While compiling wisdoms, some of which were lost or changed over time, new wisdoms in the same spirit and expression were added, thus gradually getting away from the original. No matter who it belongs to, there are Ahmed Yesevi’s beliefs and thoughts, the principles of his sect, on the basis of all wisdom. Wisdom is very important in terms of forming a unity of thought among Turks.

Fakrnâme, attributed to Ahmed Yesevî, is the work of Dîvân-ı Hikmet ‘s Taşkent ( Hikmet-i Hazret-i Sultanü’l-ârifîn Hâce Ahmed b. İbrâhim b. Mahmûd İftihâr-i Yesevi , 1312, p. 2-15) and some It is included in the boiler editions (for example, Sultanü’l-ârifîn Hâce Ahmed b. İbrâhim b. Mahmûd İftihâr-ı Yesevî , 1311, pp. 3-17). The fact that Fakrnâme , which is a prose introduction to the Divan-ı Wisdom rather than a stand – alone treatise , is not found in any of the Dîvân-ı Hikmet manuscripts shows that it was not written by Ahmed Yesevi, but later written and included in the work by the organizers of the Dîvân-ı Wisdom . Fakrnâmewas published by Kemal Eraslan with an extensive review of the language characteristics of the text ( TDED , XXII, pp. 45-120).

Ahmed-i Yesevî: Selections from Divan-i Wisdom (pred. Kemal Eraslan), Ankara 1983.

Ali Şîr Nevâî, Nesâyimü’l-mahabbe min şemâyimi’l-futüvve (haz. Kemal Eraslan), Istanbul 1979.

Köprülü, History of Turkish Literature .

a.mlf., Studies .

a.mlf., The First Mystics .

a.mlf., “Ahmed Yesevî”, İA , I, 210-215.

a.mlf., “Ahmed Yesevi”, UDMI , II, 157-166.

Kemal Eraslan, “ Yesevî’s Fakr -nâme”, TDED , XXII (1977), p. 45-120.

a.mlf., “Çagatay Literature”, İA , III, 270-323.

Banarli , RTET , I, 276-281.

M. Kemal Özergin, “Divan-ı Wisdom from Our Religious-Sufi Literature”, Nesil , p. 45-46, Istanbul 1980, p. 8-12.

F. Iz, “Aḥmad Yasawī”, EI 2 (Eng.) , I, 298-299.


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