Qaṣīda al-Burda

Qaṣīda al-Burda

"Qaṣīda al-Burda" (Arabic: قصيدة البردة, "Poem of the Mantle") is an ode of praise for the Islamic prophet Muhammad composed by the eminent Sufi Imām Ṣālih Sharaf ad-Dīn Abū `Abd Allāh Muḥammad ibn Ḥasan al-Būṣīrī (1212-1296) of Egypt. The poem, whose actual title is "al-Kawākib ad-Durrīya fī Madḥ Khayr al-Barīya" ("Celestial Lights in Praise of the Best of Creation"), is famous throughout the Muslim world.


A ḥadīth relates:

"None of you has (perfect) "īmān" until I am more beloved to him than his parents and his children," and in another hadith, "than all mankind."

According to some books, Qaṣīda al-Burda was originally composed by Ka'ab Bin Zohair. Ka'ab composed a poem that was against Holy Prophet and Abu Bakar because his brother turned Muslim without his consent. One of the verses of the poem was:

"Abu Bakar made you drink a worst drink
""And it didn't give you any benefit neither it quinched your thirst"

After the fall of Mecca, Ka'ab Bin Zohair ran away and came to Madina after a while and told Prophet that he has embraced Islam and presented a poem to Holy Prophet that was written exactly in same pattern as the one that was against Prophet. Prophet became delighted after hearing his poem and gave him his scraf (al-Burda) as a present. After the departure of Prophet from this world, Ka'ab was offered 10,000 Dinaar for this scraf but he didn't sell it. However, after his death, his son sold it to Muawiya for 20,000 Dinaar.

According to legend, al-Būṣīrī was noted for his panegyrics of kings and rulers. He continued this vocation until contracting paralysis of almost half his body, so that his physicians lost hope for his recovery. Abandoning his faith in material means, al-Busiri turned to religion to seek a cure. He decided to compose verse in praise of the Prophet, whom Muslims consider the dearest of all to God. On a Thursday night, determined and focussed, he retreated into isolation and began his composition. After its completion, he supplicated God for better health. Upon falling asleep, he dreamt of a visit from the Prophet, who commanded him to recite the poem he had written. Al-Būṣīrī complained that his paralysis had impedimented his speech, to which the Prophet responded by passing his hand over the affected areas. Miraculously, the shaykh was freed from his disease. He began his recitation, during which the Prophet rocked from side to side in appreciation. At the recital's cessation, the Prophet gifted al-Būṣīrī his scarf ("burda"). When the poet awoke, he found himself enshrouded in the same.

The next day, when al-Būṣīrī arrived at the bazaar for work, a dervish greeted him and asked that he recite a certain ode. Having had written many verses, al-Būṣīrī questioned to which poem his accoster referred. The latter specified the poem that opened, "Is it because of your remembrance of the neighbours of "Dhī Salam"?"(Arabic: أمن تذكر جيران بذي سلم) (i.e., "Qaṣīda al-Burda"). Not having disclosed the contents of that ode to anyone, the astonished poet demanded of the dervish whence he had come to know of it. The dervish swore by God that he had heard al-Būṣīrī recite the poem to the Prophet at night, whereupon the latter attended to the poet and God cured him of his ailment. Impressed, the shaykh conferred his copy of the poem upon his companion, and soon after its fame spread.


Muslims have traditionally venerated the verses. For example, a governor of Egypt, Bahā' ad-Dīn, is said to have stood while listening to the ode out of esteem. Another legend asserts that his blind viceroy, Sa`d ad-Dīn al-Fārūqī, obtained a copy and placed it upon his eyes as instructed in a dream, and his vision was restored. The poem is memorized and recited in congregations, and its verses decorate the walls of public buildings and mosques. Some Muslims believe that, if recited with love and devotion, the "Burda" can cure diseases and purify hearts. Over 90 commentaries have been written on this poem and it has been translated into Persian, Urdu, Turkish, Berber, Punjabi, English, French, German, Sindhi, Norwegian language and other languages.


The "Burda" is divided into 10 chapters and 160 verses. Interspersing the verses is the refrain, "My Master, descend peace and blessings continuously and eternally on Your Beloved, the Best of All Creation" (Arabic: مولاي صلي و سلم دائما أبدا على حبيبك خير الخلق كلهم). Each verse ends with the Arabic letter "mīm", a style called "mīmīya". The 10 chapters of the "Burda" comprise

*On Lyrical Love Yearning
*On Warnings about the Caprices of the Self
*On the Praise of the Prophet
*On his Birth
*On his Miracles
*On the Exalted Stature and Miraculous Merits of the Qur'ān
*On the Ascension of the Prophet
*On the Chivalrous Struggle of Allah’s Messenger
*On Seeking Intercession through the Prophet
*On Intimate Discourse and the Petition of One’s State

ee also

*Sufi poetry

External links

* [ Al-Burda on the BBC]
* [ The Poem of the Mantle]
* [ The Prophet's Mantle]
* [ Al-Burda in Pashto]
* [ Recitation of the Qasida Burda]
* [ Translation of al-Burda and other resources]
* [ Sandala: The Burda of Al-Busiri]
* [ Al Burda Blog]
* []

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