Wa laa Tahzan Innallaaha Ma'ana: Don't Cry, Surely Allaah Ta'aala is with us.

  Since the time when Da'wat was in Ahmedabad 975 AH/1568 AD, Alavi Bohras read, write and speak an Arabicized form (blended with Arabic vocabulary) of Gujarati language, called Lisaan ud-Da'wat il-'Alaviyah (LDA) i.e. the language of the mission of 29th Da'i Saiyedna Ali (aq), which is an amalgamation of Arabic, Urdu and Persian words and written in Arabic script. All the Da'wat correspondence, orders and documentary affairs are exclusively carried out in Lisaan ud-Da'wat il-'Alaviyah and the sectarian learning and education system is completely based on it.  Religious discourses and congregational lectures during the prayers are held in it.  The language of Allaah, His angels, His Prophets and His book is Arabic, so is the language of His Da’wat (divinely governed mission).  The missionaries or propagandists of this mission who came to India (Gujarat) from Egypt and Yemen to promulgate and preach Isma’ili faith, mainly during the reign of the 18th Faatemi Imaam, Maulaana Ma'ad al-Mustansir billah (as) (427-487 AH/1036-1094 AD), spoke Arabic language as it was their mother tongue.

The first rank of preachers (wulaat) in India were M. Ahmad, M. Abdullaah and M. Nooruddin who learnt local language (Sanskrit) and to make it more acceptable to a common man they skillfully blended it with Arabic. And this effort took quite long time to prepare people understand their message and mission. Hence Sanskrit or the then local dialects of Western India were blended with Arabic. This language then remained in vogue and developed as per the cultural, social and commercial exchange with various communities until the beginning of Muslim rule in Western India (697 AH-1090 AH/1298-1680 AD), when it got influenced with Persian and Urdu. Gradually the Arabic-Sanskrit language underwent drastic transformation due to the minimal use of Sanskrit words in day to day dealings and simultaneously with the addition of Persian and Urdu terms.

Old Gujarati now remained only for the support of sentence formation and the fact that due to the heavy dependence of Persian-Urdu idioms and phrases on Arabic root words, the Persian-Urdu expressions got readily and easily absorbed in the Arabic and Gujarati language frame-work.  This eventually gave birth to a great dynamic language during the rule of Mughals in Gujarat.  Arabic, Farsi (Persian) and Urdu all three of them were the official language of Mughal Sultanate.  This again gave a new dimension and strength to an already rich language.  In the beginning of the 11th century AH/17th century AD  this language was documented and was exclusively spoken by the Alavi Bohras named as Lisaan ud-Da'wat il-'Alaviyah.

This language has inherited its Gujarati syntax right from its inception, but retained majority of Arabic terminology along with the writing pattern of Naskh. Thus like Arabic, LDA- Lisaan ud-Da'wat is written from right to left and being nurtured and peppered by the richest of the world languages, it is the sum-up of variety of idioms-phrases and multiple dialects which makes it distinctive and comprehensive. Alavi Bohras residing globally speak this only language and its place of progress which is the centre of Da’wat since 3 centuries i.e. Vadodara plays a pivotal role to make everyone adhere to their roots i.e. their mother tongue. Every Alavi has to come to Vadodara to fulfill his religious as well as social obligations by keeping Lisaan ud-Da'wat il-'Alaviyah alive in his heart and tongue.

  The Origin and Development of LDA:
  Example 1: 1054 AH/1645 AD

Some of the oldest documents that Alavi Library has containing fragments of Lisaan ud Da’wat in form of instructions in Saheefat us Salaat written during the time of 28th Da'i ul Mutlaq.  Thereafter the period of 31st Da'i ul Mutlaq Saiyedna Hasan Badruddin bin Wali saheb AQ (1047-1090 AH/1638-1679 AD) was marked with persecution and oppression of Alavi Bohras in Ahmedabad by rival communities.  He was a prolific writer and an outstanding poet.  Being a Da'i and the head of the community he took full responsibility and authority to protect the rights and lives of his followers.  Through the power of his pen he appraised the local authorities of Ahmedabad about the injustice and harassment of his community.  By his wise words he raised his voice and addressed Mughal Emperor Aurangzeb (reigned 1067-1118 AH/1658-1707 AD) for help and justice.  Arabic and Persian was in his blood and by referring his anthology "Diwaan e Hasan", one could definitely judge his depth in both these languages.

When Saiyedna saheb AQ ascended on the throne of Da'wat e Shareefah in 1047 AH/1638 AD, the initial 7 years were tense and turbulent.  He was forced to stay in underground chamber for years together from where he corresponded with Sultanate authorities in Persian and Arabic language to take revenge of the martyrdom of Saiyedna Ali saheb AQ.  When the enemies were punished for their wrong-doings and the condition improved he revealed himself and started preparing mumineen to get settled in Vadodara.   Saiyedna saheb AQ and his associates elegantly started using local Gujarati language though in the form of scattered segments, to communicate with Alavi Bohras settled in different towns of Gujarat.

To prove this important claim, Saiyedna saheb AQ wrote Fa'al-Naama of Imaam Ja'far us-Saadiq AS in 1054 AH/1645 AD in a single book in Arabic, Persian and Lisaan ud Da'wat.  This unparallel book present in Alavi Da'wat library is a live testimony that it is from this period that mumineen widely used and understood Lisaan ud Da'wat.  Though in a very primitive form but it started gathering momentum and acceptance among mumineen.  But one thing should be kept in mind that amongst the Razaa-kaar of Da'wat e Shareefah, Arabic remained the prime and preferred language of Da'wat e Shareefah, Arabic and Persian remained the prime and preferred language of Da'wat's internal communications.  During this period there are many elegies and eulogies - maraasi & qasaa'id that are composed either in Arabic or in Persian.  But there is one unparallel and distinguished Qaseedah Alaviyah that Saiyedna saheb AQ composed in praise of 29th Da'i e Mutlaq Saiyedna Ali saheb AQ starts and ends in Persian but the couplets in between are in Arabic.


Transliteration (right side page): “Aye Saa’il, hushiyaar  tha! Tu ye vaat karwaa thi  ke Lok, Fitnat mahi paadwa hataawe che Tuh ne kaink na baaz thaki ke utaru che Allaah Ta’aala ye Tu dihu.  Aye Saa’il, nir Tu kar Tu ye amar thaki te thi je te Niyato kidhu che, te kaam upar pachi yaari maang Tu Allaah kare. Pachhi Tahqeeq Allaah chauroshe Tuh ne te Qaum ni Fitnat thaki.  Amma Qaum sahu te Kaam upar Fitnat to sarshe ghani.”

Translation: O Questioner, be Alert! What has Allaah Ta’aala ordained upon you from His grace, some people with some means are doing dirty tricks and trials against you so that you disown the grace.  O Questioner! You surely wish to do what you want with good intention and then seek Allaah’s help.  Then, Allaah surely will free you from the people of dissension.  This is the reason that those people never leave a chance to create a discord for you.

  Observation in Textual pattern:
Text in Manuscript Recently Used Text Meaning
Taa - تا Thaa - تھا Be
Maahi - ماہ Maa - ما In
Dihu - دھوں Waaste - واسطے For
Nir - نر Yaqeenan - یقینا Surely
Thaki - تھکي Thi - تھي From
Sahu - سھوں Sau - سو All
  Observation in Writing pattern:
End of the Arabic part of the Fa'al-Naama denoting the date of its writing   Beginning of the Persian part of the Fa'al-Naama written by the same Da'i
Elegy-Marsiyah in Persian language in the Shaan of 29th Da'i Shaheed e Aazam Saiyedna Ali saheb (QR) - 1076 AH/1666 AD
Translation: O Learned saheb, you are of perfect Intellect with the peak of Enlightened  Conscience   Translation: I (Hasan) have come to your Mazaar paying sincere respect being your servant and asking for mercy and grace as I ask your hand for help
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