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The Farāhī Foundation
Dr. Shehzad Saleem

The Farahi Foundation has been established to bring about a resurgence in the ranks of the Muslim Ummah, and to revitalize and reform its entire fabric. It has been instituted to redirect the various currents of Muslim thought in order to achieve this cherished goal. Its formation at the dawn of the twenty first century, it is hoped, shall herald an era of Islamic revival and once again the world shall witness the dazzling splendour of an Islamic society. The target no doubt seems far fetched, yet the intense desire to shed every drop of blood and to expend every quantum of energy in the cause of truth has given us the courage to challenge the impossible. 

Name of the Foundation

The foundation has been named after Imaam Hameed Uddin Farahi (1863-1930), a celebrated religious scholar of the sub-continent. His outstanding contribution to human intellect stands unrivalled in recent times. With the splendour of the midday sun, he lit up the world of scholarship and learning and left an indelible mark on mankind's intellectual history. It was his profoundly sensitive personality who, at the beginning of this century, devised a masterplan to initiate the revival of a vanquished lot of people. He believed that this revival is only possible after an intellectual awakening is brought about in the Ummah. Sure enough, his brilliant research work has laid the foundations of such an awakening and pioneered a new system of education which has revolutionized existing concepts about curricula and pedagogy. His outstanding achievement in this regard is that he has paved the way to direct deliberation on the Quran irrespective of any sectarian bias. His masterful work on the Quran has given the Ummah a basis to unite and has provided it with a definite clue to resolve its differences. More importantly, this work has made it possible to reconstruct the Muslim religious thought as a whole on the basis of the Quran and Sunnah --- the two original sources of Islam.

Since most of Farahi's work is in Arabic, he is unknown to the common man. However, he is well known to most scholars of the sub-continent, who have acknowledged his outstanding contribution to Islamic thought and learning in the following words:

Maulana Shibli Naumani

"It is generally believed that a talented person can in no way remain unknown to the world. Experience as well as history bear testimony to this. However, each rule has an exception. Maulvi Hameed Uddin ... is a good example of such an exception ... In this age, his treatise "Tafseer Nizaam-ul-Quran" is as essential and beneficial to Muslims as pure water is to the thirsty and exhausted." ("An-Nadwah", Dec 1905)

Maulana Syed Sulaiman Nadvi

" ... The Ibni Taimiyah of this age has passed away on 11th November 1930 --- someone whose brilliance is very unlikely to be surpassed now and whose comprehensive command of oriental and occidental disciplines is a miracle of this era. A profound scholar of the Quran ... a unique personality ... an embodiment of piety ... an unfathomable sea of knowledge ... an institution within himself ... a literary genius ... a researcher of progigious intellect ... It is a matter of great sorrow that such a brilliant personality graced the world and then perished, but the world could not recognize its grandeur ... " ("Ma`aarif", Dec 1930) 

Maulana Abul Alaa Maudoodi

"It has been generally accepted that in recent times, very few have reached the position Allama Farahi has been blessed with by the Almighty as far as deliberation on the Quran is concerned. He has spent the major portion of his life pondering on the meanings of this Book, and has written such a masterful commentary on the Quran that it is difficult to find its parallel even in the early period..." ("Tarjuman-ul-Quran", Vol 6, No 6)

Maulana Manaazir Ahsan Gilani

"...  the revivalist movement launched by Shah Wali Ullah [in the eighteenth century], in recent years has drawn inspiration from "Tafseer Nizaam-ul-Quran" the work of a distinguished scholar, Maulana Hameed Uddin Farahi. Among other features of this commentary (ie relationship between the Quran and the Bible, and various literary discussions), its salient feature is the unprecedented attempt in it to bring out the coherence between the verses. It is this coherence which sometimes provides enough evidence that the Quran is a Divine Book." ("Hindustan Main Musalmaanu kaa Nizaam-i-Taleem-u-Tarbiat", Vol 2, Pgs 279, 280)

Maulana Abdul Majid Daryabadi

"In this age, Allama Hameed Uddin Farahi is the most outstanding personality as far as Quranic Studies are concerned. He not only occupies a distinguished position among the scholars of recent times, but, in fact, has discovered some new principles for the interpretation of the Quran. The foremost among them is his philosophy of coherence in the Quran." ("Sidq", 11th February 1936)

The Basic Principle

The basic principle on which this foundation has been established is that the only source of Islam on this earth is the Prophet (sws). It is only his personality through which Divine Guidance can now be obtained till the Day of Judgement, and it is only through his sanction that anything can be regarded as part of Islam:

"It is He who sent among the unlettered a Prophet from among themselves to recite to them His verses, to purify them and [for this he] instructs them in the Law and in Wisdom --- although they had been, before, in manifest error." (62:2)

The Prophet (sws) has transferred us the contents of Islam in three ways:


1. The Quran

2. The Sunnat-i-Thaabitah

3. The Hadith


As far as the Quran is concerned, it is our belief that it is the Meezaan ie, the Balance of Justice and the Furqaan ie, the Distinguisher between good and evil. Everything should be accepted or rejected in the light of this Divine Message. All bases of belief and faith should start and end with this Word of Allah. It should rule over any sort of revelation, inspiration, research or opinion. It should be accepted that even the works of great jurists like Abu Hanifa and Shaf'i, scholars of Hadith like Bukhari and Muslim, scholastics like Ash'ari and Maaturedi, sufis like Junaid and Shibli must be weighed in the scales of this Meezaan and that nothing can be accepted from them which is not in consonance with it.

By Sunnat-i-Thaabitah, we mean the established customs of the Prophet (sws) and the remnants of the creed of Abraham endorsed by the Prophet (sws) which were passed on as religion to the Muslim Ummah by a vast majority of the Companions of the Prophet (sws) through their practical consensus or perpetual adherence to such customs. As far as its authenticity is concerned, we believe that there is no difference between it and the Quran. Just as the Quran has been transmitted to us by verbal perpetuation of the Ummah, the Sunnat-i-Thaabitah has been transmitted to us by the perpetual adherence of the Ummah to it. Consequently, its authenticity is beyond doubt.

Hadith, we believe, refers to a short narrative which describes a statement, or an action or a tacit approval of the Prophet (sws). Most of these narratives are told by a few individuals at each link of the chain of narrators and, therefore, are aptly termed as Akhbaar-i-Ahaad. A hadith shall be considered as part of Islam if its basis exists in the Quran, Sunnat-i-Thaabitah or the established principles of human nature and intellect, if it does not contradict these three in any way and if it reaches us by reliable means.

The Methodology

The methodology which the foundation has employed to achieve its goal of Islamic resurgence is to bring about an intellectual revolution in the Ummah and to educate the Ummah on the true message of Islam. At the moment, the Ummah is passing through a crisis of disunity in the fields of thought and learning. Dogmatic adherence to antiquated concepts has led to a state of stagnation. Reason and Rationality --- the real favours of the Almighty to mankind --- which were to steer humanity in the light of Divine Guidance have either been condemned to death or invested with absolute authority. A state of confusion and chaos prevails in the intellectual circles of the Ummah. Alas! the dynamic force of Islam which was to conquer hearts and enlighten minds has been shackled by its very custodians.

To rectify this sorry state of affairs, the foundation has decided to pool and rejuvenate the intellect of this country and to use it as a base to infiltrate into the rest of the Ummah. Following are some of the targets set by forth by the foundation in this regard:


1. To establish a network of general educational institutions upto the intermediate level throughout the country in which the message of the Quran shall be inculcated in the minds of the students so that in subsequent years they are able to truly follow their religion in letter and spirit. These schools will create an awareness of life and its purpose among our younger generation. They shall groom them to become patriotic and loyal citizens of their country. They shall make them aware of their rich heritage and glorious traditions which had once made them masters of the world. It is hoped that through this network of educational institutions scholarship and learning, courage and perserverance, discipline and discretion which were once the hallmarks of Muslims shall, once again, find expression in their personalities.

2. To establish an Institute of Islamic Sciences in order to produce competent religious scholars. These scholars shall break the bond of Taqleed and shall have the ability to face the challenges of the modern world. They shall be taught to deliberate directly on the Quran irrespective of any bias to any sect. They shall be educated on the principles of all the major schools of jurisprudence and taught that any biased affiliation in this regard is intolerable in the field of knowledge. The Quran shall be made the pivot around which their whole curriculum should revolve. They shall be reared with the notion that in the Quran rests the final authority and that it is the Quran which rules over every matter in our religion. With this beacon in hand, they shall be made to explore the various domains of knowledge and at every step seek its guidance. They shall also be made familiar with the essentials of modern philosophy, psychology, economics, physics and politics so that they are able to follow their methodology of reasoning and have the capability to explicate, in contrast, the views of the Quran and Sunnah. 

3. To establish institutions which can carry out research and Ijtihaad in the various domains of religious thought. Accomplished scholars in these institutions shall re-structure and re-orient the Islamic thought on the basis of the two original sources of Islam --- the Quran and the Sunnah. They shall reconstruct various disciplines like Islamic law, Islamic philosophy and Islamic history in the light of the Quran and Sunnah. They shall document literature to present the true message of Islam and have the competence to answer the questions which have arisen in the last couple of centuries of man's intellectual history. 

4. To establish an institute of advanced science and technology in order to generate the infrastructure necessary to produce indigenous technology. The institute will harness the budding local talent and use it for the progress and development of this country. This locally produced technology shall be instrumental in making this country a superpower among the comity of nations.

5. To establish countrywide Centres which aim at educating the common man on the true message of Islam. While remaining above all sectarian differences, they will offer various programmes of education on Islam to peoples of various walks of life. For this purpose, they will employ all the modern forms of communication technology to penetrate into the farthest frontiers of this Ummah.  

6. To establish a network of organizations of public welfare to endeavour to rid the common man of the host of economic and social problems created by the inhuman institution of commercial interest. This network shall try to reach out to people who are deprived of the basic necessities of life and provide help. It shall do everything its means shall allow to relieve the worries of the common man caused by unemployment, social injustice, price-hike, corruption in government offices, lack of proper health and education facilities and other social evils.


To achieve the above mentioned targets, the foundation has decided to establish various institutes in the fields of education, research, da`wah and public welfare. At the moment, the following three are functioning under its auspices:

Al-Mawrid Institute of Islamic Research

This institute was established in September 1991 at Lahore to carry out research and Ijtihaad in the various fields of Islamic thought. A small team of `on-job trained' research associates and research assistants have been entrusted with this task. Following are some of the projects which the institute aims at working:

(1) A detailed commentary of the Quran in Arabic which takes into account the coherence within it.

(2) A translation of the Quran in Urdu based on this principle of coherence.

(3) A comprehensive book on Islamic law and the philosophical issues of Islam.

(4) A summary of the above mentioned book by the name of "Al-Islam".

(5) A critical analysis and collection of all the Ahaadith which are concordant with the Quran and Sunnah, with an explanation of their texts in Arabic and Urdu.

(6) Based upon the same principle, a compilation of the life of the Prophet (sws) and a history of the early Islamic period.

(7) Reconstruction and reorientation of Islamic Law.

(8) Documentation of explanatory literature on various topics of Islam.

(9) Preparation of a detailed Manifesto of Islam in which is stated the changes which should be brought about in the political, economic, social, educational and penal systems of the country to bring it in consonance with the Quran and Suunah.

(10) Completion of some of the unfinished works of Imaam Hameed Uddin Farahi and Imaam Amin Ahsan Islahi, and their translation in various languages.

(11) Compilation of Work on Comparitive Religions.

(12) Preparation of syllabi of Arabic, English and Urdu to meet the requirements of a new language based system of education.

The institute is also publishing two monthly research journals "Ishraq" (Urdu) and "Renaissance" (English) and efforts are underway to launch an Arabic monthly. Besides these journals, it has published a number of books and pamphlets on various topics. The audio-visual wing of the institute has made available recorded lectures on various subjects for the benefit of the people. A whole section of marketing and promotion is being established to deliver the written and the spoken word to the various sectors of the society.

At the moment, the small team of research workers needs a lot of fresh blood to accomplish all the projects outlined above. The library needed to carry out this research work though is steadily increasing, yet it is far from meeting the requirements of present day research. The small publishing network, in spite of working day and night, is quite unable to meet its target and more than half of the research work done in the last three years is still to be published. The setting up of an extensive publishing network is being envisaged not only to meet existing targets but also the targets of the future which include the publishing of a weekly magazine and a daily newspaper. Moreover, to record lectures on audio and video cassettes at the highest possible technical level, it is intended to set up a modern studio. Currently, the premises of this institute is packed to capacity and has no space for any addition. The Foundation has procurred a six and a half canal piece of land where a building for this institute shall be constructed to meet its current deficiency of space. It is the target of the Foundation to raise funds for this national project and thereby pave the way for the formation of a da`wah empire.

Mus`ab Public School

This school which was established in December 1993 at Lahore, is a pilot project for a chain of school systems to be established country wide to produce good Pakistani Muslims. For this purpose, services of such teachers are being hired as are the epitome of competence and impeccable character. They shall be among those teachers whose hearts throb for a better tomorrow for our nation and for the Ummah, and who consider the inculcation of these sentiments in the younger generations part of their duty, and to whom teaching is more than just a profession --- it is a mission. It is also expected that those who would pass out from this institution will be well aware of their religion even if they choose professional areas of study as medicine and engineering. The growing tendency among educational institutions to overburden the students with books just to create false impressions of scholarship is being discouraged, and an effective programme is being chalked out whereby these students progress gradually on firm footings.

Some of the salient features of its curicula are outlined below:

Primary Level (UP TO CLASS 8)

At the primary level, students shall be instructed only in the Holy Quran, English, Urdu, mathematics and calligraphy. Following are some of the guidelines which shall be used during this period.

(i) After they gain some rudimentary knowledge of Arabic, the students shall be instructed in religion in Arabic so that they learn the language as well as their religion.

(ii) English and Urdu shall be the media of instruction in pure sciences and social studies so that students learn modern subjects as well while learning both these languages.

(iii) They shall be instructed in ethics and Muslim tradition to make them good practising Muslims and to make them aware of their rich intellectual heritage

Secondary level (FROM CLASS 9 UP TO CLASS 12)

At this level special areas of study shall be given emphasis. For this purpose, the following guidelines shall be used:

(i) Education in the languages and the Holy Quran shall be continued.

(ii) Subjects specific to a particular field of study shall be included at this stage; for example, a science student shall be instructed in such subjects as physics, chemistry and biology. Similarly, those students who would specialize in Islamic studies shall be instructed in the classics of Arabic literature (Adab-i-Jaahilee), Arabic grammar and rhetoric.

(iii) A student shall be encouraged to specialize in such areas of study as are congruous with his temperament and inclination.


After almost one and a half years of its formation, the school is working satisfactorily though some of the targets listed above are still to be achieved. The school, presently, is functioning till the third grade and it shall need expansion at the beginning of the next academic year in April 1996. The Foundation intends to acquire a larger premises for this school and it is certain that the Almighty, as always, shall come to the help of its limited resources.

Centres for Islamic Communication

The headquarters of these centres was established at Lahore in April 1995 to educate the common on the true message of Islam. At the moment, two branches of these centres are working at Karachi and Mardan. It is expected that other centres at Islamabad, Rawalpindi, Quetta, Peshawar, Gujranwala, Okara, Sahiwal, Dera Gazi Khan and Sher Garh shall start functioning before the end of this year.

Some of the programmes which these centres shall offer are:

1. To hold lectures and speeches for the explanation of the Islamic thought.

2. To arrange workshops and conventions for the purification of the soul and for the cleansing of our thought and deeds.

3. To organize discussions, seminars and talk shows on current issues. 

4. To institute `Friday Schools' for children.

5. To offer Islamic orientation courses of various duration for people belonging to different walks of life.

6. To set up libraries at these centres where the works of religious scholars not associated to any particular sect are present at the disposal of the common man.

7. To constitute audio and video libraries.

8. To arrange for the teaching of Quranic Arabic.

9. To offer correspondence courses on Islamic thought in general.


It is our intent desire to equip this Foundation with all the modern facilities and services so that the task of revival of the Muslim Ummah can take place at the highest level. We are neither making a tall claim nor overestimating ourselves for this task. It is only because of a sense of responsibility that this Foundation has been set up, and it is only to please the Almighty and to further the cause of Islam that this mission has been undertaken. We are well aware of the fact that, before us, all those undertook it were so illustrious and outstanding in stature that we stand nowhere in comparison with them. The only thing we possess is a deep sense of concern for the Ummah. We would consider our job done if we are only able to communicate this concern to others.


Board of Trustees

(1) Mr Javed Ahmad Ghamidi: President Al-Maurid Institute of Islamic Research.

(2)  Mr Afzal Ahmad

(3) Mr Sheikh Muhammad Arshad: Chief Engineer Planning (retd) WAPDA.

(4) Mr Altaf Mahmood Chaudhry: Director Altaf & Company.

(5) Mr Muhammad Anees Mufti: Director Metal Farming Group of Companies. 

(6) Mr Muhammad Saleem Arif: Director Administration WAPDA.

(7) Dr Muneer Ahmad: Director F Rabbi and Co (pvt) Ltd; Director Paramount Distributors (pvt) Ltd; Editor "Ishraaq", a monthly Islamic Journal of Al-Maurid. Vice-president Al-Maurid.

(8) Mr Shakeel-ur-Rehman: Director Snowhite Dry Cleaning Industries.

(9) Mr Shehzad Saleem: Research associate and Vice-President Al-Maurid; Editor "Renaissance", a monthly Islamic Journal of Al-Maurid.

(10) Dr Muhammad Farooq Khan: Psychiatrist; Vice-President Al-Maurid; Director General Cente for Islamic Communications.

(11)) Mr Pervaiz Hashmi: Partner Creative Group; Chairman Product Services (pvt) Ltd.

(12) Mr. Nasir Usman Kalia: Director K B Sarkar (pvt) Ltd.

(13) Mr Izhar Ahmad Qureshi: Chairman Izhar Group of Companies. 

(14) Mr Ayub Sabir Izhar: Managing Director Izhar Group of Companies.

(15) Muhammad Rashid Farooqi: Director Sheikh Wilayat Ahmad & Sons

(16) Mr S M Saeed Allah Wala: Director Kohinoor Chemical Industries Ltd.


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