Shaykh Muhammad ibn al-Habib al-Filâlî

(1295/1876-1391/1971)

His lineage:

He is the Sufi sharif, teacher, guide to Allah and shaykh of the Darqawi tariqa, Sayyidi Muhammad ibn al-Habib ibn as-Siddiq al-Amghari al-Idrisi al-Hasani.

His ancestors were based in Marrakech, and he is related to Moulay 'Abdullah Amghar, who is buried at Tanasleht, near Marrakech, a descendant of a line which goes back to 'Ali and Husayn. This branch of the family emigrated to Tafilalat and settled there. His father emigrated to Fes, settled there and his descendants still live there.

His birth and primary education:

He was born in Fes, the cradle of knowledges and fount of gnoses, in 1295 AH. At the proper age, he went to the Qur'anic kuttab at Qantara Abu'r-Ru'us in the Sharabiliyyin quarter where he studied with the faqih and righteous wali, Sidi al-Hashimi as-Sanhaji, learning the basics of reading and writing and recitation of the Noble Qur'an. He also studied that with the faqih Sidi Ahmad al-Filali in the school of Qasba an-Nawwar and memorised the Qur'an under him.

His secondary education and instruction:

After he completed his goal in the Qur'an school, he left it and began to imbibe the finest nectar of dependable education and beneficial knowledge from its pure springs. That was around 1312. In the Abu'l-Junud Mosque in Fes he studied with the renowed faqih with pure recitation, Sidi Mahmad al-Irari, concentrating on the Ajrummiyya, the Alfiyya and as-Sullam by Bannani and the Qualities of Muhammad by at-Tirmidhi.

Then in the Qarawiyyin mosque, which enjoys widespread renown, he studied the Mukhtasar of Khalil with az-Zurqani, Bannani and al-Kharashi with the faqih and Shaykh of the Community, Sidi Ahmad ibn al-Jilali al-Amghari.

He studied the Tuhfa with the commentary of Shaykh at-Tawudi ibn Sawda and the Collection of the Adab of the Teacher and Student by Shaykh Khalil with the faqih Sidi Abu Bakr ibn al-'Arabi Bannani.

He studied part of the Sahih of Imam al-Bukhari and the Hikam of Ibn 'Ata'llah with the faqih Sidi Ahmad ibn al-Khayyat az-Zargari.

He studied az-Zaqqaqiyya with the margin which the shaykh himself wrote on it with the faqih Sidi 'Abdu's'-Salam al-Huwari.

He studied the Alfiyya with al-Makudi and al-Muwaddih with the faqih Sidi Khalil al-Khalidi.

He studied part of the Jami' al-Jawami' and part of the Musnad of Ahmad ibn Hanbal with the faqih Muhammad ibn Ja'far al-Kittani .

He studied part of the Mukhtasar of Khalil, a summary of the Mukhtasar as-Sa'd, and part of Tawhid al-Murshid with the commentary of Shaykh at-Tayyib ibn Kiran with the faqih who is skilled in knowledge and a master of sciences, Sidi J. Muhammad Fatha Junun.

From the faqih and Shaykh of Islam, Moulay 'Abdullah ibn Idris al-Badrawi, he learned the Sahih of al-Bukhari, part of the Mukhtasar of Khalil, al- Isti'ara of Shaykh at-Tayyib ibn Kiran, and part of the Hamziyya by al-Busiri with the commentary of Ibn Hajar.

He learned part of the Mukhtasar of Khalil, ash-Shifa' by Qadi Abu'l-'l-Fadl 'Iyad as-Sibti and part of al-Murshid al-Mu'in by Mayyara from the Sufi faqih, Sidi Hammad as-Sanhaji.

He learned al-Murshid al-Mu'in from the faqih Sidi Muhammad ibn 'Abdu'r-Rahman al-Filali.

Then he stopped his studies in 1319 when he achieved his desire and filled himself with knowledge and education, and he began to teach knowledge on a voluntary basis in the mosque of Qasba an-Nawwar in Fes, teaching al-Murshid al-Mu'in, the Mukhtasar of Khalil, the Muwatta' of Imam Malik, as-Sanusiyya, and tafsir. He continued to undertake the tasks of his educational and secondary work until he emigrated to the city of Meknas and took up residence there in 1355. There he continued his distinguished scholarly activity by giving lessons in the Zaytuna mosque on tafsir and fiqh using the Risala of al-Qayrawani, and in tasawwuf using the Hikam of Ibn 'Ata'llah and al-Murshid al-Mu'in, and ash-Shifa of Qadi 'Iyad, and as-Sullam by Bannani and the Alfiyya by al-Makudi.

His ijaza:

Shaykh Sidi Badru'd-din ad-Dismishqi gave him a written ijaza in Damascus and he also received one from the Qadi of Tlemcen, Sidi Abu Shu'ayb, and he had oral ijazas from the scholar Sidi Ahmad ibn al-Jilali al-Amghari, and the faqih Sidi Abu Bakr ibn al-'Arabi Bannani.

His journeys:

In 1350 he travelled to the holy lands to perform the blessed obligation of the hajj and went to the land of Kinana. He met with some of its scholars, including Shaykh Bakhit al-Muti'i and Shaykh as-Simaluti. He travelled to Syria and met some of its scholars, including Tawfiq al-Ayyubi and Shaykh Badur'd-din ad-Dimishaqi. He went to Algiers also after that and met some of its scholars. Among them in Blida he met Shaykh Sidi Muhammad ibn Jalul and Sidi Ahmad, and to Fagig in the area of Oujda and meet its scholars, including the Shaykh al-Islam, Sidi Muhammad al-Qadi and Qadi Sidi Jalul. He gave lessons there on the Sahih of al-Bukhari and al-Murshid al-Mu'in with the commentary of Shaykh at-Tayyib ibn Kiran.

Then he travelled to the Hijaz and made hajj to the Sacred House of Allah again in about 1360.

Then he set out from the Isma'ili capital, Meknas, in the company of his wives, making for the pure lands to perform a third hajj to the sacred House of Allah in 1391, but died on the way before achieving his desired goal. So the words of Allah Almighty which are unequivocally clear apply to him: "If anyone leaves his home, making hijra to Allah and His Messenger, and death catches up with him, it is Allah who will reward him. Allah is Ever-Forgiving, Most Merciful." (4:100) The Prophet, peace and blesing be upon him, said, in a noble hadith, "Whoever leaves in this way for hajj or 'umra and dies during it will not be examined or reckoned and will be told to enter the Garden."

His intellectual legacy:

He wrote a diwan which is called "The Desire of the Travelling Murids and the Gift of the Wayfaring Gnostics". It has been published twice. He wrote a commentary on the Hafidha of the Shaykh Sidi Muhammad al'Arabi al-'Alawi al-Madghari which contains supplications of the Prophet, ayats of Qur'an and some of the Shadhili hizbs. He also wrote a commentary on the Salat al-Mashishiyya.

His scholarly position:

He was a scholar and faqih with great perception. He was familiar with many sciences, while being particularly proficient in tafsir and tasawwuf.

His poety:

He dipped a bucket in the well of poetry when his talent produced several qasidas about tasawwuf, good character, praise of Allah, praise of the Prophet and religious admonitions.

His death and burial:

He moved to his Lord with his face directed towards the Holy lands to perform hajj to the Sacred House of Allah in the city of Blida, Algeria, on Monday, 23 Dhu'l-Qa'da, 1391. He was buried in the same day in the Darqawi zawiya which was recently built and he himself had inaugurated. That was in the Belqasim al-Wizri Street in Blida. Then he was moved from this burial place to his second home, the city of Meknes, where he was re-buried after 'Asr on Monday 14 Dhu'l-Hijja of the same year in his zawiya in the place where he had ordered that he be buried, in Darb al-Pasha, near the Zaytuna msoque.

May Allah forgive his sins and veil his faults and accept him with honour and beautiful covering and make him dwell in the highest part of 'Illiyin in the company of the Prophets, truthful, martyrs and righteous. Amen.

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