The Reformers of Islam (Mujaddid)
(Written by Ghaffari)
In his short essay entitled Tuhfat al-Mujtahidin bi Asma' al-Mujaddidin ("The Gem of the Striving Scholars: the Names of the Renewers of the Religion") al-Suyût.î listed the Renewers as follows:
1st century: Umar ibn Abd al-Aziz
2nd century: Imam al-Shafi’i
3rd century: Imam Ibn Surayj and Imam al-Ash`ari
4th century: Al-Baqillani, Sahl al-Su`luki, and Abu Hamid al-Isfarayini
5th century: Imam al-Ghazzali
6th century: Imam Fakhraddin al-Razi and al-Rafi`i
7th century: Ibn Daqiq al-`Id (625-702)
8th century: Al-Bulqini and al-Iraqi
9th century: Imam Jalaluddin al-Suyuti (849-911 A.H)
The above mentioned centuries are according to the birth of those scholars. But a Mujaddid of a century is known to be the one who is born in the previous century but his Tajdid (reform) occurs in the next century. Hence the above names be considered the Mujaddids of the next centuries.
Others have suggested different names for some of these centuries as follows:
2nd century: Imam Abu Hanifa (80-148 A.H) – the greatest Imam of Fiqh
5th century: Hadhrat Abu Yusuf Hamadani (440-535 A.H) - He was the shaykh of Sayyadna Abdul Qadir Jilani, as well as a grandsheikh of Naqshbandi tariqah
6th century: Khwaja Mueen al-Din al-Hasan al-Sanjri al-Ajmeri (535-633 A.H) – He was the Imam of the Chishti sufi tariqah, and with his efforts a significant part of the Indian population converted to Islam
This list can be continued as follows. Multiple names are suggested by various scholars, all presented here.
Shaykh Ahmad al-Faruqi of Sirhind, India (d. 1034) – unanimously accepted as the Mujaddid of 11th century as well as the 2nd millennium of Islam, hence called Mujaddid Alf Thani
Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb Alamgir al-Mujaddidi of Delhi, India (established the Islamic governance in India, he was a khalifa of Imam Muhammad Masum al-Sirhindi)
Al-Qutb `Abd Allah al-Haddad of Hadramawt, Yemen;
Hadhrat Abdullah Mujaddidi alias Shah Ghulam Ali Dehlavi of Delhi, India (1158-1240 A.H) - most widely acclaimed, as he was the Shaykh of Khalid al-Baghdadi and lived almost the same times
Shaykh Khalid al-Baghdadi al-Mujaddidi of Damascus (1193-1242 A.H) - acclaimed by the Khalidi Naqshbandis
Shaykh Muhammad Amin `Abidin (Ibn `Abidin) of Damascus – a student of Shaykh Khalid al-Baghdadi
(Shaykh G.F Haddad has named both of them (shaykh Khalid and his student Ibn Abidin) as the Mujaddids of 13th century)
Imam Ahmad Rada Khan Barelvi of India (most widely acclaimed)
Shaykh Muhammad Zahid al-Kawthari of Turkey
Shaykh Badr al-Din al-Hasani of Damascus, Syria
Sheikh Ahmad ibn Mustafa al-Alawi (1869–1934)
Hadhrat Pir Fazal Ali Qureshi of India (d.1934)
Today, there are numerous great scholars of Islam continuously reviving the spirit of Islam and working hard day and night to reform the Muslims in the whole world. It is hard to decide or single out one of them, and only time will show the real Mujaddid or Mujaddids of 15th century.
And Allah then His Prophet know better!