Abul Hasan Ali Hasani Nadwi (Urdu: ابوالحسن علی حسنی ندوی ; 24 November 1914 - 31 December 1999) also spelt Abul Hasan Ali Hasani Nadvi (affectionately 'Ali Miyan') was an Indian, Islamic scholar, and author of over fifty books in various languages. He was one of the most important theorists of the revivalist movement.
He was born on 24 November 1914 into a scholastic family. He received his early education at his home in Takia, Raebareli, Uttar Pradesh, India. His mother initiated his early training in Quranic studies; he later entered formal education in Arabic, Persian and Urdu.
His father, Hakim Syed Abdul Hai, wrote an 8-volumes Arabic encyclopaedia called Nuzhat al Khawatir (biographical notices of more than 5,000 theologian and jurists of the Sub-continent).
Nadwi received most of his advanced education at the Dar al-'Ulum of the Nadwat al-'Ulama in Lucknow.
Abul Hassan Ali Nadwi primarily wrote in Arabic, although also in Urdu, and wrote more than fifty books on history, theology, and biography, and thousands of seminar papers, articles, and recorded speeches.
His 1950 book Maza Khasiral Alam be Inhitat al-Muslimeen (lit. What did the world lose with the decline of Muslims?), translated into English as Islam and the World, was largely responsible for popularizing the concept of "modern Jahiliyya", coined by his teacher Abul Ala Maududi. Expounding Mawdudi's views, Nadwi argued that Muslims were to be held accountable for their predicament, because they came to rely on alien, un-Islamic institutions borrowed from the West. The Islamist author Syed Qutb commended Nadwi's writings for his use of the word jahiliyya to describe not a particular age in history (as earlier Muslim scholars did) but a state of moral corruption and materialism.
Honours and awards
- 1962 Secretary of the first inaugural session and foundation of Muslim World League in Mecca.
- 1980 King Faisal Award
- 1980 Chairman of Islamic Centre Oxford.
- 1984 President of 'League of Islamic Literature'.
- 1999 ‘Islamic Personality of Year’ award established by Sheikh Mohammed of United Arab Emirates.
Access to the Kaabah
In 1951, during his second pilgrimage (Hajj) to Makkah the key-bearer of the Kaabah (Islam's holiest building), opened its door for two days and allowed Abul Hassan Ali Nadwi to take anyone he chose inside.
He was subsequently given the key to the Kaabah to allow him to enter whenever he chose during his pilgrimage.
Abul Hasan Ali Hasani Nadwi died on 23 Ramadan, 1420 AH (December 31, 1999) in Raebareli, India at the age of 85.