‘Urs Celebrations in Ajmer, India

My wife, and I have travelled to Ajmer to be present at the ‘urs (death anniversary) of our shaykh who expired in 1996. The ‘urs celebration took place on two days, the 26th and 27th of February. The dates are different each year as they are based on the Islamic calendar.

Most of the activities took place at the chillah, a hill with the cave wherein Khwaja Mo’inuddin Chishti performed his retreats. After the qul, the closing ceremony, there was a function which started at about 22.00 P.M. at the dargah of Khwaja Mo’inuddin Chishti. About 40 people then walked two times round the shrine of Gharib Nawaz (The Patron of the Poor) as he is also known. Then we sat down at the place where my shaykh always sat. Forty people, sitting silently, in a very peaceful dargah…

The program thereafter started with an innovation. A musician from Israel played the flute in the classical Indian style. A revolution, because as far as I know, this has never happened on the dargah complex. The khadims (they are the descendants of the travellers who arrived so many centuries ago in the company of Khwaja Mo’inuddin Chishti in Ajmer) reacted by presenting some rupees to the musician to show their appreciation. After this peaceful and beautiful start the qawwals, the Sufi singers of Ajmer had their turn and for about an hour we listened to them. In silence we returned to our Sufi khaneqah.

On the first day the ‘urs consisted of music by two Israelian musicians, by a free kitchen wherein hundreds of people took food, by qawwalli music, by recitation of classical urdu poetry in the honour of the prophet, by recitation of Quranic verses and by reciting the silsila, the line of succession in our order from one shaykh to the other ending with the name of our shaykh.

On the Sufi Saint School (a school for the poorest of the poor in Ajmer which is open to all religions) the children had a program of their own. On stage they sang, danced, showed traditional costumes, etc. At a certain moment you saw a boy dressed as a monkey with a big tail coming up the stage who sat down covering his eyes. Another ‘monkey’ covered his ears and the third one his mouth: “See no evil, hear no evil and speak no evil”. Our fun however increased as the monkey who saw no evil did not see the others leave when their performance had ended and remained sitting on his own on the stage covering his eyes…

It is strange as today it snowed in Holland, while yesterday we enjoyed pleasant temperatures of about 25 degrees Celsius. Today we saw orderly traffic, while yesterday we were in the chaos of India. If you have not been in India it will be difficult to imagine what you see on the streets. When making a walk you see amazing things. However I would advice you to go to India only with a definite purpose and with an introduction as there are many negative things to be told about it as well, which I have omitted from this account.

The thing that made our stay worthwhile was the loving atmosphere among the mureeds of our order. Such things you rarely find in everyday life. For me there was however one short moment, which was the best of all. We said goodbye at the station to a certain disciple at the station who left for Delhi. He took me apart and said that he had waited for five years to meet me for the first time as our murshid had made a remark about me to him. He then repeated what our shaykh had said and it was impossible to remain unmoved when such a loving message from my shaykh reached me as if from across the grave…

We travelled to Delhi and visited the dargah of Nizamuddin Awliya by first going to the shrine of his most beloved disciple Amir Khusraw. Thereafter we went to the dargah of Hazrat ‘Inayat Khan. This is a very beautiful building. Near the shrine, but still inside the building a tree is growing. There is an opening in the roof allowing the tree to grow out of the building. No one was there, except for Hazrat ‘Inayat Khan who waited for us. We said goodbye to India, hoping to return one day.

8 Comments Add yours

  1. KgnReshma says:

    Bismillah KGN,
    Shaykh salaams to thee,
    Thou art busy like a bee.
    This year say hello to India,
    Teach us Sufism & algebra.

    A bright new sun shines,
    Harbinger of good signs.
    Cupbearer pours fresh wines,
    New Year, new hope defines.

    This year too I await His call,
    In His hands me a clay doll.
    Cupbearer serves wine to all,
    Excludes me,I feel so small.

    This year let thy glance be kind,
    In thy love many slaves go blind.
    Have thee kept me quarantined?
    To thee,thy teachings am Inclin’d.

    This year, Cupbearer I thank thee,
    For gift & knowledge without a fee.
    As bright New sun shines,
    A Harbinger of good signs…….
    & Cupbearer pours fresh wines,
    As New Year, new hope defines.

    Thank You!

  2. KgnReshma says:

    Bismillaha KGN Salaams,
    Really when would the Cupbearer return to India for Khwaja Moin-ud-din sahib’s Urs?

    Urs, indeed yes the Urs of Sultan-Ul-Hind sarkar! Its worth all the sacrifices made for reaching the Final Destination of ‘This friend of God.’

    The maddening rush, the fragrance of roses & attar (perfume), the blooming of friendships with strangers, the love & brotherhood among devotees is unimaginable.

    Happen to remember one such event during the Sama organized during the Kul’s night at Ajmer
    Shariff last year; truly ‘Experience is The Best Teacher.’

    1. The conflict of territory is age old in the history of mankind. During the event of Sama each devotee engages in the tussle & bustle of knuckles & elbows to make one self comfortable to view the Mystic musical Event.

    2. However after few moments the same devotees give you tips/suggestions for your Comfort zone. Once they realize you being a new intern, they go out of the way to make space for you at the cost of their own discomfort.

    3. And then soft drinks flow towards you to quench your thirst, all at no cost at all.

    4. In unison heart dances & rejoices in the Mystic Sufi Music. At the end of the Event farewell is exchanged but not before exchanging of numbers.

    5. Its Universal brotherhood at its best for Sufism indeed teaches Universal Love & Brotherhood!

    So fasten thy seatbelts & off you go; for the 807th Urs of Khwaja Ghareeb Nawaz.

    Pray, Pray He summons you. His will supersedes yours!

    Thank You!

  3. KgnReshma says:

    Bismillah KGN-Salaams,
    O Seeker thee lost His Contact?
    In life hereafter, says Contract,
    Shall get Him,with God’s impact,
    So why worry on being Sacked?

    Urs of Moin is on the anvil,
    Moin forgives every devil.
    Incase you go, humbly pray for all,
    Particularly the Cupbearer, so tall.

    Go to Usman Chilla,
    Visit Cupbearer’s Silsila.
    Go Urs time,its such a busy sight,
    Babas may take pity on thy plight.

    Chilla overlooks lake Anasagar,
    Go there with a pretty Chaddar.
    Cool breeze blushes the cheeks,
    Tales of Divine Love it speaks.

    Quietly move & make no sound,
    Be humble like grass on ground.
    At Shah Babas, talk very less,
    Moderation is a pretty dress.

    O Seeker thee lost His Contact?
    Shall get Him,with God’s impact……….

    Thank You !

  4. KgnReshma says:

    Bismillaha KGN-Salaams,
    We have seen many Q & A Sessions drafted by the cupbearer of many renowned revered Sufi Saints.

    Every Coin has two sides. Imagine on One side ‘The Beloved’ & on the other ‘The Seeker’ or ‘An admirer of ‘The friends of god’. What would your questions to her/him then be?

    Q1] Devotee, why do you Weep?
    A1] In remembrance of beloved,
    This floor, Tears Sweep.

    Q2] Devotee, what do you Wish?
    A2] Whatever beloved wishes,
    That’s my favorite Dish.

    Q3] Devotee, have thou gone Mad?
    A3] Separation from beloved,
    Has turned me Sad.

    Q4] Devotee, thou not ashamed?
    A4] In ‘The Love of beloved,’
    Where’s the question of shame?

    Q5] Devotee, beloved loves thee a lot?
    A5] Love isn’t a 2 way channel,
    Lord has gifted me this pot.

    Q6] Devotee, thee lost beloved’s contact?
    A6] This divine Path does have,
    Various channels to interact.

    Q7] Devotee, name the permanent channel to interact?
    A7] The Rose present in heart
    Creates medium to trace & silently act.

    Q8] Devotee, why go for Urs?
    A8] Fragrance of beloved,
    Is felt in the Julus (procession).

    Q9] Devotee, what would thou do in Urs?
    A9] Apply balm to areas of wounds,
    For beloved’s strictness has left a bruise.

    10] Devotee Moin asks thou a Boon?
    A10] Raise the station of my beloved,
    For He’s prettier than the Moon!

    Yaa Moin Haqq Moin!

  5. KgnReshma says:

    Bismillah KGN-Salaams,
    A] Interestingly whence we start talking about Patron of the Poor i.e. Khwaja Moinuddin Hasan Chishti (KGN) waves of love flood through the body & soul.

    B] Similar waves are experienced for the designer of this Mystic Tavern.
    Is it an amalgamation of the two into Divine Love? Is it cause of the similar characteristics possessed by the Chishtis?

    C] The Chishtis exhibit characteristics as below:

    1) Love & Sobriety.
    3) Thankfulness & Generosity.
    5) Hospitality & Contentment.
    7) Trust in God & Hope.
    9) Belief & faith.
    10) Truthfulness & Honesty.
    11) Integrity, Asceticism & Renunciation.
    12) Piety & Sincerity.
    13) Fondness for social service (Cupbearer loves this a lot).
    14) Devotion.
    15) A desire to be a useful member of society (very dear to The Cupbearer).

    Source: Life & Work of Khwaja Ghareeb Nawaz by Dr. Zahurul Hasan Sharib.

    D] Seeker can start following at least 3 things at a time for say a cycle of 40 days, then implement few other traits; is good to go I suppose.

    E] The above may lead one to become a Sufi? Well at least a good night’s sleep is guaranteed, dear friends of Dervish.

    F] Now then who’s hoping on a flight to Ajmer for 807th Urs of KGN (R.A)? Ah Allaha knows the Best!

    & G] Says ‘O Thank You!’

  6. KgnReshma says:

    Bismillah KGN-Salaams- URS MUBARAK!

    Urs & The Mystic Tea!
    Tea an aromatic beverage first recorded in China (59 BC) during the Shang dynasty & popularized during the Tang dynasty.

    After water, Tea is the most widely consumed drink in the world.

    In the year 2017 the top 5 Tea exporting countries were as below:
    1) China 21%
    2) Sri Lanka 19%
    3) Kenya 18%
    4) India 8%
    5) UAE 4%

    Few Certifications for exporting Tea are as below:
    1) Rainforest Alliance (NGO NY, USA)
    2) Fairtrade
    3) UTZ Certified (Amsterdam Netherlands) &
    4) Organic ( USDA).

    Source: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tea

    Let’s take you back to Ajmer Urs & The Mystic Tea!
     The Holy Tea that is served during the Urs of Hazrat Khwaja Moinuddin Hasan Chishti (RA) in the much revered Dargah Sama Khana, is brewed in a traditional copper, coal-fired Urn, known as a “Samavar”.
     P.M.Currie has a mention of the said long-standing tradition in his book, “The Shrine and Cult of Mu’in Al Din Chishti of Ajmer (Oxford University Press):
     “The Sama is interrupted at 3 am when tea flavored with saffron and cardamom is brought into the Sama Khana”.

    Source: As posted by Gudri Shah Baba 5 on 12.03.2019.

    Lastly, does the Iron Tea kettle of The Cupbearer make ‘Mystic Tea’ too?

    Cupbearer likes silence so, be it for few days hereafter from me Pls………

    Thank You!

  7. KgnReshma says:

    Bismillah KGN-Salaams,
    Inspired by the poem ‘ In the Bazaars of Hyderabad’ by The Nightingale of India Smt ‘Sarojini Naidu’, I pen down a poem ‘In the Bazaars of Ajmer Shariff’…..

    Time of Urs ought be happy,
    For Sufi, Devotee & hippy.
    Sufis forever engaged in prayers,
    Devotees in Lacs,eyes withTears.

    O Ye makeshift shops crop up,
    Dresses to candies & rose syrup.
    Every product makes its way,
    Cheap prices keeps no poor at bay.

    Glittering laces and frills for skirts,
    Turbans at prices that doesn’t hurt.
    Bangles & rings for maiden queens,
    Anklets & chains, heart truly beams.

    Unnani Oil is good for joint,
    Almond oil shipped,point to point.
    Sandels to slide over pretty feet,
    Henna makes bride appear sweet.

    Attars, Lobhan, Incense sticks,
    Bazaars of Ajmer have lovely Bricks.
    Tiles & Bricks are filled with Love,
    Meant for Khawajaji’s lovely dove.

    Langar served have multiple cuisine,
    From meat to pure vegetarian green.
    Baba never keeps anyone hungry,
    Free sweets shall make you greedy.

    Time of Urs ought be happy,
    For Sufi, Devotee & hippy.
    Attars, Lobhan, Incense sticks,
    Bazaars of Ajmer do lovely Tricks……

    Thank You!

  8. KgnReshma says:

    kGN Haji Malang Baba,
    Namaste & Salaams,

    In our hearts Sharib(R.A) resides,
    He a mystic, an aristocratic guide.
    Drinking His wine, we got dyed,
    Today Sharib, a handsome Bride!

    24th Urs Mubarak!

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