Birth Registry of our Jamaa'at during the Da'wat of 41st Saiyedna Jivabhai Fakhruddin saheb AQ giving the glimpse of Names in the year 1307 AH

  Our Jamaa'at Population - What was, What is and What should be? The Onus lies in our Hands

Past Era:

  • There was 27 staunch supporters (along with their families) with our 29th Da'i Saiyedna Ali Shamsuddin saheb AQ. The tenure of Muqaddas Maulaa’s Da’wat was 16 years – 1030 to 1046 AH.  Majority of these families had their relatives in Vadodara.
  • After the death of 31st Da'i Saiyedna Hasan Badruddin saheb AQ, in 1110 AH the 32nd Da'i Saiyedna Jivabhai Ziyauddin saheb AQ following Badruddin saheb’s AQ will and farmaan left Ahmedabad city and settled in Vadodara along with approximately 300 mumineen.  There were around 40 Alavi families residing in Vadodara before the Shahaadat of Saiyedna Ali saheb AQ in and around Fakhri Mohalla.
  • During the initial phase of the tenure of 41st Da'i Saiyedna Jivabhai Fakhruddin saheb AQ (1296-1347 AH), the total population of our mumineen was between 1250-1350 people. During this period a lot of families came from Surat and settled in Vadodara. This increased our population dramatically. Also many families of Nagoshiya joined our community and took Bay'at due to the hard efforts and graceful treatment of Muqaddas Maulaa.  This historic incident of total Nagoshiya faction coming into our community's fold marked sharp increase in our family count.
  • During the time of 42nd Da’i Saiyedna FidaaAli Badruddin saheb and 43rd Da’i Saiyedna Yusuf Nuruddin saheb (1347-1394 AH), a beautiful and Bohra trend of joint families was going on among every section of Alavi society. Having 7-10 children in one family was very much common and a matter of pride too. So during these 50 years i.e. 2 generations passed, there was a tremendous increase in our population. The total population of our mumineen residing in Vadodara, Nadiad, Mumbai and other small towns-villages was approximately 4000.
  • From the tenure of the Da'wat of Muqaddas Maulaa 44th Da’i Saiyedna Taiyab Ziyauddin saheb (1394-1436 AH) the count of the number of children kept on decreasing drastically. From 7-10, it reduced to 3 or 4. We faithfully recollect our Muqaddas Maulaa’s wise words pertaining to this worrying trend, “Previously houses were smaller in size but members were large in number,  still there was support, love and Barakat in the house. But in the present situation, houses are large in size with too many rooms but members are few to occupy it. Too many walls in the house acts like barriers in the hearts of the family members. Only namesake love prevails and there is no trace of Mahabbat-o-Barakat in the house. This is a reality of revolution with decaying family values.”

Present Era:

  • Presently our Jamaa'at population is around 8000. Every year around 45 infants are  born and approximately 60 deaths occur. It means that there is a deficit of 15. The rate of child birth has decreased as compared to the rate of marriages per year.
  • During this pandemic of Covid-19, this year more than 80 deaths have occurred. The birth rate has been continuously decreasing. So we could see the gap between death rate and birth rate is gradually widening.
  • Aqaa Maulaa Saiyedna saheb TUS wisely stated many times during these years after his ascension on the throne of Da'wat that, “O Parents! You should fix the marriages of your daughters early. Don’t delay their marriages by giving the excuse of higher education. Allow your daughters to work only if utmost necessary. It is not a rule that daughter should do service as per their educational qualification. Daughters should come at home before Maghrib. To get married to a righteous man and start a family in presence of their parents holds good for all daughters. A lot of problems arise if marriages are delayed.”
  • It is a serious matter that the graph of our Jamaa'at’s population is constantly decreasing since past 20 years. In these 20 years more than 120 girls of other communities have been married in our community. From among them there are a few who have still not accepted our basic Alavi traditions and practices. So it is doubtful that their offsprings will be a part of our society . In this way that particular family will distant itself from our community.
  • In recent past, about 10 families have left our community by abandoning our tenets, customs and traditions due to ignorance and misinformation.  Aqaa Maulaa Saiyedna saheb TUS openly invited them and even now the doors of Da'wah Shareefah is open, but what is required for a true Mu'min is a purity of heart.
  • In recent years many Alavi families or youth have settled abroad either in search of better job or education.  As they remain away from our society for years together and gets absorbed in non- Alavi culture, there remains always a danger of other worldly benefits and monetary aspects ruling the fragile intellect of our youth.  Not knowing our tenets and foundation youth gets easily trapped and becomes a cheap prey on the hands of other communities.  Parents find themselves helpless as they believe they have lost the battle.  Better earning and living abroad is not the only gain but better life for children as per Alavi atmosphere is the real gain of life.  The people of house is the only people during despair, sorrow and sickness.

What to do?

  • This is a burning problem in almost all the communities around the globe who want to safeguard their identity. The society has created this problem and so it is solely responsible to bring it’s solution.
  • The elders of the family play a key role in this. Their help and support is needed. They should nurture their children such that they become aware of the present scenario and also advise them to have children.
  • Today’s youth worries about the responsibilities of child's education and other expenses. Allaah Ta'aala says that, “A child is a blessing for the family. So do not fear about its sustenance. A child will be a source of increase in your wealth. Also he/she will become an apple of your eye.”  The youth should ponder over the fact that how our elders have lived in a small house. Our present condition is much better than theirs. So what is it that is stopping us from having children?
  • Not only education but social and cultural awareness is also necessary. Job, career or service is preferred over having children and starting a family. During the era of Muqaddas Maulaa, the average birth rate per an Alavi couple was 3-4 which has now reduced to 1-2. The couples fear the responsibilities and give up.
  • The families who are well to do, financially stable should plan out their families wisely and widely. Having more children will not affect them in any way.
  • One should think a thousand times before getting separated from a joint family. There is a lot of difference in the upbringing of children in joint family versus nuclear family. There is etiquettes, cultural values, shamefulness and respect in families where elders live. Also the elders can take care of their grandchildren if both the parents are working.
  • Women continue their career even after their marriage. So sometimes it happens that they become spendthrift. Unnecessary expenses are carried out which further becomes their needs. Due to such needs they continue their jobs which results in delay of bearing a child.  This untimely delay amounts to the condition where due to the age and illness, there is no space left for a career-oriented couple but to be happy with a single child.
  •  If you are working to cover the expenses of the house and if you feel that having a child will become an interference then such thinking is nothing but foolishness. Reducing the unwanted desires and temptations will in turn reduce the expenses.  Secondly, there are also many who want freedom after having a single offspring. The responsibility of one kid is enough for them. They don’t like being tied up at home. They assume that the responsibility of raising a child will end life . Perhaps their world will end. But truely speaking they are not aware about the reality and ethos of Shari'ah which states that, “The wish of a husband to have an offspring is superior to all other things. So the lady who loves her man, treats him with dignity and is a  child- bearer, is an excellent wife."
  •  This problem has come from a non-Islamic society - Western culture.  The media on every possible mode is spreading propaganda of having  two offspring with a couple. If a couple has one daughter and one son then it is considered as an ideal or complete family. Such type of thinking is senseless.   If there are only two children, the parents will pamper them a lot . They fulfil every small and big demand of their children. They spend a lot in giving their child best education and help them in getting best jobs. Then comes the time when parents reach their old age and are in need of their children. But at that time the son is usually abroad for establishing his career and maybe the daughter is married with non-Alavi boy and this act will automatically cancel her membership of our community. This implies that the efforts of the parents in upbringing their children have gone futile.
  • It is a matter of worry that in future we may face the problem of lack of relatives in any Khushi-Ghami (happy-sad) occasions. Due to this undesirable social trend of having just one daughter or one son from where will they get the relatives Maasi, Kaaka, Foi, Maama etc.? If there are more children and if they stay in a joint family then all the relations are well–maintained and that brings glory in all family occasions due to the mutual support and understanding.
  • Those having children and living in a joint family will have love in their heart for one another and generosity in their dealing with the relatives. Blood relation is on the top of all other virtual friendship and worldly companionship. They believe in togetherness and family values.
  • O Readers! Our aim is to make you aware of the current scenario of our closely-knit society. We have to join hands and together work for increasing our community's population. If we are not mindful of this problem of our community's population then maybe in the coming 50 years the situation might worsen and the things might slip out from our hands.
  • Our aim is not to hurt anyone's sentiments but to make the youth aware of the present truth. This should be a lesson for everyone so that they understand their responsibility towards the society. Our community is our main identity.
  • Those couples who have been married since 10 years should have concern about this matter. Their elders should counsel them and prepare mentally for having more children. This is not just about one or two families but it has to be a joint effort of everyone. If this advice is followed then insha-allaah in the next 50 years we will reap best results for our community.
  • Those mumineen who have been abroad since long time and their children have completed studies and are doing job, should marry them with an Alavi boy/girl to protect the integrity and identity of their family.  Parents in abroad should impart right knowledge, positive approach and communication with Vadodara mumineen. 
  • Those bachelors/singles who as a students staying abroad should think seriously about marriage as early as possible.  Living alone with family or parents is not good for a youth in long run.  Their parents in India should search for them a right partner whenever their children happen to be here in India.
  • Allaah Ta'aala loves those people among whom there is an increase in the number of the followers of Ahl ul Bayt AS. A believer’s child is a source of sustenance for all worldly beings. He is the light of truth and wisdom. The entire community prospers due to such mumineen.  By the intercession and Du'aa of Aqaa Maulaa Saiyedna saheb TUS, may Allaah Ta'aala bring prosperity and glory in our Alavi Jamaa’at.

This Article was published in Mishkaat ul Haadi bi-monthly Deeni Newsletter
Issue-157 Year / Moharram-Safar 1442 AH / Sep-Oct 2020 AD

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