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Ain-Madhi- The City Main Entrance

3.Ain-Madhi- The Zawiya’s old Mosque
4.Ain-Madhi- Sidi Mohamed Al Habib Tijani’s Mausoleum
5. A general view of Kourdane Palace
6. Sidi Mohamed Tahar Tijani’s Mausoleum in Kourdane Palace
7. A close view of Kourdane Palace
8.Inside Kourdane Palace
‫بسم ال الرحمن الرحيم‬

‫أل إن أولياء ال ل خوف عليهم ولهم يحزنون‬

62-10 ‫القران الكريم‬


“Behold Verily on the Friends of Allah there is no fear nor

shall they Grieve” Holy-Quran 10-62.

*Subject: Muslim Saints of Algeria & the Maghrib


Sidi Ahmed Tijani was born on the 12th of Safar 1150AH/1737AD in

Ain-Madhi some 444 km south west of Algiers near the southern city
of Al -Aghouat, his father, Mohamed Ben Mokhtar, is said to have
been a pious man of learning who lived and taught at Ain Madhi,
whereas his mother Sayidah Aicha bint Abdullah bin Al-Sanoussi
Tijani was of the original Tijani tribe of Ain Madhi and thus the name
At-Tijani for Sidi Abu-Abbas Ahmad is derived from his mother.
So Sidi Ahmed is from a noble Mohammedan’s ancestral lineage that
reads as follows:

He is Abu Abbas Ahmad Tijani son of Mohamed son of Mokhtar son of

Mohamed son of Salim son of Ahmed Al Alwani son of Ahmed son of
Ali son of Abdullah son of Abbas son of Abdul Jabar son of Idris son of
Ishaq son of Ali Zayn Al Abidine son of Ahmed son of Mohamed
Annafs Azzakiyah son of Abdullah Al Mahdh son of Al Hassan Al
Mouthana son Al Hassan Assibt son of Ali Ibn Abi Taleb & Fatima
Zahra Daughter of Master of the Universe , the Beloved Messenger of
Allah Mohamed(PBUH).

It would be important to note that Ain Madhi was a town of great

scientific importance, with an environment full of devoutness and
piety, as it was a centre of knowledge and righteousness since
inception. Most of the family members of Sidi Ahmed Tidjani, who
constitute part of this town, had possessed a high degree of
knowledge in both Shari'a (Islamic jurisprudence) and Sufism, while
his grandfathers were amongst the finest religious scholars and were
well established in sainthood; like his two grandfathers Sidi Ahmed bin
Mohammed, and Sidi Mohammed bin Salim who migrated to Ain
It goes without saying and in view of the environment he was living in,
which is naturally disposed for special care and guidance, he memorized
the Holy Qur’an, by age seven, as narrated by Imam Warsh, under the
renowned righteous jurist & scholar Sheikh Mohammed ibn Hammou
Tidjani El-Madhawi (of Ain Madhi & Tidjana tribe).afterwards, Sidi
Ahmed Tidjani concentrated his efforts in studying the fundamentals
and branches of religious and artistic sciences. He mastered them and
conceived their intricacies and fine points.

As such he went to memorize several books, of which are: the

Lakhdaari, the Risaalah of Imam Qairawaani, the Khalil, and the
Muqaddimat of Ibn Rushd, he also studied the Risaalah Jama`at al-
Sufiyya bi bilad al-Islam by Abu al-Qasim al-Qushairi, and the
Muqaddimat of Shaykh Abd al-Rahman al-Akhdari.

Sidi Ahmad Tijani became an orphan in 1752, his mother and father
died during a Smallpox epidemic (1752) while he was only sixteen
years old. He then decided to further his own education, which he did
with great enthusiasm. In 1757, five years later, he went to Fez in
Morocco to apply himself to the study the Prophetic Traditions (Hadith),
to meet Sufi Sheikhs, and to take advantage of the lessons given by
various renowned scholars from different countries. By the age twenty-
one, he was firmly grounded in religious learning. He also received
diplomas conferring on him the authority to teach Islamic Sciences.
During this time, Sidi Ahmed Tijani felt a call for the Sufi life and
thereafter participated in Sufi brotherhoods: The Sufi order of Ahmed al-
Habib bin Mohamed, the Qadiriyya, and the Nasiriyya, moreover a Wali or
a Pious God-fearing man by the name of Muhammad bin al-Hasan al-
Wanjili predicted that Sidi Tijani would achieve spiritual realization in the
desert. Thus, the Sheikh went to a village on the outskirts of the desert
called Al-Abiad Sidi Cheikh and settled in the Zawiya of Sidi Abdul Qadir
bin Mohamed, where he sought Allah’s pleasure and taught for 5 years.

Later, Sidi Ahmed went to Medina to visit the Prophet's (PBUH) Tomb and
Mosque where he met the leader of the Khalwatiyya Sufi order, Sheikh
Abdul Karim al-Samman, the latter informed Sidi Ahmed that he was to
become Qutb al-Aqtab (The Dominant Authority, or Pole of Poles) among
the Walis. Leaving Medina, this idea led him to spend a prolonged period
of seclusion (khalwa) in dhikr and contemplation, in the village of Abi –
Samghoune or Boussemghoune near the Saharan city of Al Bayadh.
During the first year of his stay in Boussemghoune, Sidi Ahmed was
blessed with the vision of the Beloved Prophet Mohamed (PBUH), where
he gave him the glad tidings and commanded him to leave all the ways
(paths or tariqahs) he had been following before that time, saying, "No
one will reproach you, for I myself will be your intercessor in front of
your Lord and your Helper."

He informed his followers that the Blessed Prophet (PBUH) asked him to
accept the rank of Khalifa of the Messenger of Allah, and that the
Prophet himself assigned him the Wird and the new conditions of the
tariqah, saying: “Keep this tariqah without retiring from the world, nor
ceasing to interact with people until you reach the spiritual station that
is promised you, maintaining your state without any undue mortification
nor cultural efforts”. [Jawahir Al Ma’aani –page 32-Cairo Edition].

The Tijaniya Path was founded in the year of 1778 (1190AH) and from
1781 to 1799 , Sidi Ahmed was the main teacher of the doctrines of the
tariqah through his many travels to the Sahara, the Sudan, and Tunisia
setting up Zawiyas, and nominating pious Moqaddams or Tariqa
Representatives moreover, the majority of his disciples and students
were Scholars or Ulamas , Fuqahah (learned in jurisprudence), Qadis
(judges), and Muftis (officially appointed religious heads, usually of a
particular country), such that until this day the Tijaniya Tariqa is also
known as “'The Tariqa of the Ulamas”.
Around the years 1798 and 1799, and in the midst of growing
political difficulties, Sidi Ahmed was compelled to leave his native
country of Algeria and settle in Fez, Morocco, he was already well
known and respected there at the same time he was well known
for his strict observance of Holy Qur`an, the Sunnah of the
Prophet (pbuh), and principles of the other main Islamic sources.

He once was quoted as saying to his followers: “If you hear

someone quoting me, place the statement on the scale of the
Noble Sharia; if it balances, take it, if it doesn't, leave it, for within
the noble Qur`an and Hadith you will find the Tariqa Tijaniya”.

Sooth to say that Sidi Ahmed laid the solid foundations of the
Zawiya and continued spreading the Tariqa, reaching remote
corners as far the whole far west (Morocco), the Sahara, and the
west Sudan , and Sidi Ahmed Tidjani emerged as an established
Saint that had dedicated his whole life for spiritual education,
training, guidance, and promotion of the endeavourers to the
divine proximity , mainly in the period following his permanent
settlement in Fez until the day he met his Lord on Thursday
morning, 17th Shawwal 1230AH-1815AD at 80 years of age, he
was buried in Fez (R.A.).
Truly Sidi Ahmed Tijani had genuinely contributed to an
outstanding chapter of the History of Islam and Sufism in Africa
and elsewhere and no wonder why are the ongoing secrets
behind this spiritual legacy still wondering people about the
World’s largest Sufi Tarika the “Tijaniyah” with more than 400
million Disciples throughout the five continents of this Planet.

MOHAMED BOKRETA ‫محمد بوكريطة‬

Freelance –Writer‫كاتب مستقل‬