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155) The Shanaat of the Takht of Da’wat

28 January 2017

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

شَانَاتُ عَرْشِ الدَّعْوَة

 (This is the tarikhi naam of the Takht Nashini Celebrations – numerical value is 1438)

The shanaat of the takht of Dawat.

On the joyous occasion of his Milad Mubarak on the 26th of Rabiul Aakhar, we celebrated the Takht Nashini (Eid-ul-Istiwa’) of the 54th Dai al-Mutlaq, Syedna Taher Fakhruddin TUS. It was a happy coincidence that Syedna completed fifty years of age on this Milad. It was also a happy coincidence that the tarikhi naam (the historical name - the numerical value of which according to the “abjad” counting method equals 1438, the current Hijri year) that was derived for this occasion was “the shanaat of the takht of Dawat” (shanaatu ‘arshid-da’wah – 1438H).

Today, despite the numerous waves that assail the ship of Dawat, the Da’i remains steadfastly and unwaveringly at the helm of safinat-un-najaat. Dawat has remained and will remain – there is no wave that is strong enough to overthrow this boat.  It is stronger and more confident with each day and with each victory, and the Imam’s Dai is giving hidayaat, and will continue to guide Mumineen on Siraat-e-Mustaqeem no matter how the storm rages.

The ascension of each Dai to the takht of Dawat, the throne of Imam-uz-zamaan’s vicegerency (niyaabat) is indeed a momentous occasion. No worldly coronation compares to it. This is not a coronation of temporal rule with jewels and crowns of gold, this is a coronation with the crown of itlaaq (taj-ul-itlaq), the rutba by which the Da’wat is present during the time of the Imam’s seclusion. This takht nashini is on the takht of Dawat, a throne that stands on water – the water of knowledge (“And His Throne was on Water”).

In our kitaabs and the bayaans from our Hudaat, the expression that an Imam ascended the throne of Imamate upon the passing of his predecessor is very common (for example, Hasan Imam wafat thaya, Husain Imam Imamat na ‘arsh par mustawi thaya). The same expression is used in the context of the representatives of the Imam in seclusion, the Du’at Mutlaqeen. The celebrations marking the ascension of a Dai to the throne (‘arsh) of Dawat have been historically known as the “Eid of Ascension” on the throne of Dawat - Eidul Istiwa’. Inspired from a Quranic ayat, the historic name for the celebrations of Syedna Taher Saifuddin’s RA ascension to the throne of Dawat in 1333H was “Zu Arshin Majeed” (the numerical value of the historic name in Arabic is 1333).

These references do not refer in most cases – except in the time of zuhoor— to a temporal throne that our A’immat or Du’aat ascended. It refers to the throne of Dawat, the throne resting on ‘ilm.

Throughout the ages, trials and tribulations have meant varying levels of temporal authority: from the zahiri khilafat of Amirul Mumineen to the peace treaty that Hasan Imam SA agreed upon with Mu’awiya to forsake temporal authority of the Islamic empire; from the Fatimid rule of the vast empire established by 11th Imam Mehdi Billah SA to the complete seclusion of the 21st Imam Tayyib SA; from the rule of the Du’aat Mutlaqeen on vast areas and strong fortresses in Yemen to the difficult periods in the time of Da’ud bin Qutubshah during which the Dai had to remain in hiding for years.

This is the reality and the cyclical nature of history. Though, what has remained constant throughout the years is that each Imam and each Dai in the Imam’s seclusion, has ascended the throne of Dawat. A throne not made of rubies and gold, or wealth and power but a throne of divine knowledge and wisdom - a throne on water.

This was a celebration of the 54th Dai al-Mutlaq Syedna Taher Fakhruddin’s ascension to this throne. His Dawat is established on the foundation of divine knowledge and wisdom. Fortunate are those who seek knowledge from its waters.

May the shanaat and light of Syedna on the takht of dawat, shine like the sun and illuminate the path of truth for all those who seek guidance and salvation. May Syedna grace this Imami-takht for many, many years.

This Sijill article contains excerpts from Sijill Article 134, “Throne on Water” by Shehzada Dr Aziz Bhaisaheb Qutbuddin.