Amir Najmu’d Din Hasan Al-Sijzi

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Amir Najm-ud-din Hasan al-Sijzi was born in Badaun in 1254. He was an important poet of the age, whose work attracted attention of literary figures and poets even outside India. Jami praised him in his Baharistan. He began writing poetry at the age of thirteen. While Amir Khusrau served at the courts of Balban’s sons, Hasan was attached to the Sultan’s court, employed as a writer of qasidas in praise of his master. He excelled even his bosom friend Amir Khusrau in writing ghazals because of his effective use of words and incisive style. Under the Khaljis Amir Khusrau seems to have enjoyed greater prestige than Hasan. The latter was based in the military camp located some distance away from the city. Often the latter’s salary was delayed. Therefore on one occasion his impecunious state prompted him to ask Khawaja Nizam-ud-din if he could accept an unsolicited gift. It seems apparent that Amir Hasan became the disciple of the Sheikh-u-Mashaikh sometime before 1307 when he was more than fifty-two. He confided that the performance of other than obligatory prayers was a burden for him whereas he felt great solace in sama. The Sheikh advised him to devote more time to recitation of the Holy Quran than writing poetry.

Amir Hasan also wrote prose and his Fawaid-ul-fu’ad is an excellent record of discourses of his spiritual guide, Khawaja Nizam-ud-din Aulia. It is considered as a literary classic of the period. This book not only relates highly intellectual, ethical and spiritual attributes of Sultan-ul-Mashaikh but also serves as an important source book for the cultural history of the early period. Hasan remained unmarried. He died at Daulatabad in1337. During his lifetime, he came to be known as the Sa’di of India, a reference to the greatest of all the Persian Sufi poets.

This article was last updated on Monday, Jan 03, 2005