mantiq, fiqh, hadith, tibb, algebra, mathematics, kalaam, spiritualism, mysticism, oratory
and metaphysics under his father. Thereafter, he was inducted into the tradition of bay'at
by his father and, by the age of seventeen, he was permitted to provide spiritual guidance
to and reform his fellow Muslims.
On the death of his father when he was hardly seventeen years old, he became a mudarris
(teacher) at Madrasa Rahimiyya. He held this position for twelve years. Then, in 1731,
Shah Waliullah performed Hajj. He reached Makkah on May 21 and performed Hajj,
after which he proceeded to Madina. There, he attended Shaikh Abu Tahir Muhammad
bin Ibrahim Kurdi Madani's discourses on hadith. Shah Waliullah studied Sihah Sitta,
Mu'atta Imam Malik, Masnad Da'armi, and Imam Muhammad's Al A'saar under him.
Thereafter, he returned to Makkah, performed another Hajj, studied Mu'atta Imam Malik
for a second time under Shaikh Wafadullah Maliki Makki, and attended the discourses of
Shaikh Tajuddin Hanafi Qala'i Makki on Sihah Sitta. Then, he was permitted to teach all
of the kitabs of hadith by Shaikh Tajuddin.
Thereafter, Shah Waliullah returned to India. His journey back to India lasted six months
and he reached Delhi on January 1, 1733.
Achievements and Services
During his sojourn in Makkah, Shah Waliullah had a dream in which Rasulullah
commanded him to reform the organization and emancipation of Muslims in India. Thus,
after he returned to Delhi, he started his work in earnest. This was in a period when
Muslims in India were passing through the most critical phase of their history and their
entire social, political, economic and spiritual fabric was torn to pieces. On his arrival in
Delhi, he started to train his pupils in diverse branches of Islam and entrusted them with
the mission of enlightening people with the true nature of Islam. He embarked upon the
task of authoring standard works on Islam and was able to complete a number of works
Shah Waliullah rose to be an eminent scholar of Islamic studies. He was a prominent
intellectual figure whose mission was to reform the Muslims he saw as misguided. His
activities were not confined to spiritual and intellectual spheres only. He lived in troubled
times and witnessed a number of rulers occupying the throne of Delhi. With his keen
political insight, he observed the deterioration of Muslim rule in India and wrote to a
number of political dignitaries to attempt to bolster the political life of Muslims in India.
He established several branches of Madrasa Rahimiyya in Delhi in order to effectively
disseminate his knowledge.
Shah Waliullah was a prolific writer as well. In the realm of Islam, he produced a number
of memorable literary works and, within a period of thirty years, he wrote a total of fifty-
one works of merit, twenty-eight in Arabic and twenty-three in Persian. Some of these are