7.4 The Demand of Deeni Self-Respect

Only three or four months had passed of Hazrat Thanwi fulfilling his task at Madrasah Faiz-e-Aam when the administrators of the Madrasah, thinking of his extraordinary talent, wished to engage him in collecting funds for the Madrasah through his lectures. Hazrat considered it against Deeni self-respect for the Mudarris [Teacher] to give dars on Deen and then go about delivering wa’z [lectures] for his wage. He, therefore, blankly refused.

The Madrasah Board Members convened a meeting to discuss this non-participation in collection. Someone informed Hazrat about this. Hazrat remarked:
“If I have to lecture for funds then why should I not collect for myself? This is not my duty. It is the duty of the board members. My work is simply to teach.”

This, however, did not change the mind of the board members and they started making a big issue about it which he completely disliked. He, therefore, resigned.

Afterwards they apologized, but Hazrat preferred not to stay on there, for this reason that these people appeared to be unappreciative and to endure with such people was not possible for him.

As far as this episode was concerned, Hazrat would say:
“That was a time of youthful vigour and emotion. And the actual reason was that being employed went against my grain. When I wrote to my dear father complaining about the situation, he sent a reply in which he put forward excuses for them and added: ‘Stay on there. It is not appropriate to be hasty in separation. Employment was not our purpose. Allah Ta’ala has given us everything. I merely permitted you [to take up the teaching post] as it was a good opportunity to solidify your knowledge as your kitaabs are still ‘hot from the oven’. If you leave this employment then your teaching stops and you will forget all that you have learnt. Without punctuality you won’t teach and if you stay on in the Madrasah then you will have to be punctual.”

However, as his mind had switched off from there, he therefore severed his relationship with Madrasah Faiz-e-Aam and resolved to return home.

7.5 Honourable Return

Prior to departing for home he went to Ganj Muradabad to visit Hazrat Moulana Shah Fazlur Rahmaan Saheb Ganj Muradabadi lest he did not come that way again. Although Moulana Fazlur Rahmaan Saheb was not a Buzrug of the same school and way of his, as he was linked to the Naqshabandi Order and Hazrat Thanwi to the Chishti Order, nevertheless he deemed it necessary to visit that Man of Allah Ta’ala as he was the Qutb [highest ranking Wali] of the time.

Although those incompetent Board Members lost the priceless jewel that was Hazrat Thanwi, the city folk however could not tolerate the tragedy of him departing as they were deeply touched by his sincerity for the sake of Deen. Hence, they started thinking of plans to bring him back.

Among the influential people of the city, Abdur Rahmaan Khan and Haji Kifaayatullah had special love and faith in Hazrat. What they also observed was that in all the Madrasahs of the city ma’qoolaat was given emphasis and Deeniyyaat was relegated to a back-seat. They, therefore, decided to open a new Madrasah in the Jaami Masjid of Mahallah Patkapur of Kanpur and they agreed to jointly pay the fifty rupees monthly salary which Hazrat Thanwi would receive from Madrasah Faiz-e-Aam. “When will we get such a Molvi again,” they thought. “He should not be left to go from here.”

In consequence, when he returned from Ganj Muradabad to Kanpur then those two personalities insisted on him staying on. Owing to their sincerity and the directive of his honourable father he agreed to conduct lessons in the Masjid. In this way a new Madrasah was established in that Masjid by the name of Jaami’ul Uloom. The Madrasah was Jaami’ [all-encompassing – a university] of Deeni sciences and rational sciences.

Initially students were shy to learn by him as he was still of a tender age and only in the beginning of his manhood. For this reason the roll of the students remained slight for some years, and when his beard grew then the student roll also grew.

Although those two personalities took responsibility for Hazrat’s wage, but thereafter collections also began. However, never did Hazrat involve himself in collecting funds.