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The Mainstay: A Commentary on Qaṣīda al-Burda

The Mainstay: A Commentary on Qaṣīda al-Burda

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by Abu Zahra


A quintessence of devotional praise and expression of passionate love for the Prophet (Allah bless him and give peace), for all to understand.  It adorns architecture throughout the Muslim lands and also found a place on the walls of the Prophet’s Mosque in Medina.

Features a foreword by Abdul Hakim Murad. 

Dozens of commentaries and glosses on the poem have been written, by such luminaries as Ibn Ḥajar al-Haytamī, ʿAlī al-Qārī, al-Bājūrī and Shaykh-Zādah. This indicates its widespread acceptance within the mainstream Muslim scholarly tradition and unquestionably dispels the doubts that some have raised about the poem’s content. While a plethora of material exists in Arabic, Urdu and Persian, no complete commentary on the Burda has hitherto been written in or translated into English.

Inspired by this rich heritage of his predecessors, Shaykh Ibn ʿAjība d.1224 AH [1809 CE] in al-ʿUmda fī Shar al-Burda (‘The Mainstay: a Commentary on Qaṣīda al-Burda’) beautifully elaborates on the poem taking the reader to the heart of the author. He comprehensively explains the meanings of each couplet and gleans beneficial spiritual lessons from it. For every reference in the Burda to events in the Prophet’s life, the author cites the primary texts that mention them and offers valuable details and enlightening clarifications of areas of possible confusion. It further offers the reader beautiful imagery and aesthetic refinement that perfectly complement al-Buṣīrī’s ode.

‘The Burda of Imam al-Buṣīrī, a moving poem singing the praises of the Prophet Muhammad (Allah bless him and give him peace), is one of the great cultural marvels of Islamic civilization. Its beautiful meanings once permeated countless cities, towns, villages and hamlets all over the Muslim world. Now its sweet fragrance is barely sensed. Perhaps Abdul Aziz Suraqah’s fluid translation of the great Moroccan sage IbnʿAjība’s commentary on this timeless work will help to restore it to its place of prominence in our lives and societies at a time when our need for the true Muhammadan presence has never been greater.’

(IMAM ZAID SHAKIR, Zaytuna College, USA)

Format: Hardcover  

Pages: 344


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