Šayḫ Muḥammad Ġawṯ Gwāliyārī (7 rajab 907/16 January 1502-14 ramażān 970/7 May 1563, see Fażl Allāh 1933, p. 76) was a prominent Sufi of the Šaṭṭārī order. In his youth, he spent thirteen (or sixteen) years meditating and practicing asceticism in the lonely fortress of Čunār (now in eastern U.P.), and he also visited the Nilachal Hills in Assam, notable as the site of the temple of the goddess Kāmakhya. He witnessed the conquest of the great fort of Gwalior by Sultan Ibrāhīm Lodī (probably around 925/1520), but Muḥammad Ġawṯ supported the Mughals, who defeated the Lodi forces at Panipat in 932/1526 (Fażl Allāh 1933, pp. 40-41, 44). Muḥammad Ġawṯ’s elder brother Šayḫ Phūl (or Bahlūl), another Šaṭṭārī master, became the chief Sufi adviser to Bābur’s successor Humāyūn, even losing his life in his service. Consequently, Humāyūn’s defeat by Šer Šāh Sūrī in 947/1540 forced Muḥammad Ġawṯ into exile in Gujarat until after Humāyūn’s restoration in 962/1555 and sudden death a year later. While in Gujarat, sometime after 955/1548, Muḥammad Ġawṯ was attacked for claims he made regarding an experience of ascension to the divine presence, an event that may have taken place as early as 932/1526 (Kugle 2003, p. 12). A group of scholars led by the famous `Alī Muttaqī joined in denouncing the šayḫ to Sultan Maḥmūd, demanding a recantation. The intervention of another scholar, Wajīh al-Dīn `Alawī (who soon became a Šaṭṭārī disciple), enabled Muḥammad Ġawṯ to avoid condemnation by stipulating that the ascension was not physical but spiritual. He spent the remaining years of his life in Agra, unsuccessfully attempting to enroll the emperor Akbar as a disciple. Muḥammad Ġawṯ is buried in a magnificent mausoleum in Gwalior. His other writings include Jawāhir-i ḫamsa, a compilation of Sufi practices composed in 929/1523 and revised in the latter part of 956/1549, when he was in his 50th year (Ernst 2008); Kalīd al-maḫāzin, a cosmological treatise based on the author’s mystical experiences; al-Żamā’ir wal-baṣā’ir on Sufi practices; Kanz al-waḥda on metaphysics; and Awrād-i ġawṯiyya (sometimes referred to as Mi`rāj-nāma), where he described his ascension (Ġawṯī 1395/1975, pp. 290-302). Muḥammad Ġawṯ evidently composed Baḥr al-hayāt in Gujarat after 956/1549, since it refers to the Jawāhir-i ḫamsa. Although nearly all copies indicate that the work was written down by a disciple named Ḥusayn Gwāliyārī ibn Muḥammad Sāranī Ḥusaynī (whose father had studied yoga for some years in Kamarupa, i.e., Assam; see Ahmad 2012, p. 165), it was dictated by Muḥammad Ġawṯ and is his composition.
The Baḥr al-hayāt is a much revised and expanded version of the Amṛtakuṇḍa material, known in Arabic as the Mir’āt al-ma`ānī, but precise quotations indicate that it is based on the previous Persian translation entitled Ḥawż al-ḥayāt, a title that it explicitly cites. It begins as other versions with an account of the introduction of the text to Muslims by a yogi from Kāmarūpa, i.e., Assam. The yogi is a man who is here called Kāmak (generally written as Kāmā or Kānmā); evidently this is a conflation with the goddess Kāmakhya as the author of the text. Kāmak is cited in chapter vi as the wife of Shiva and a transmitter of the text from Brahma and Vishnu. Following the script of the frame story from the Mir’āt al-ma`ānī, the yogi loses a disputation with Qāżī Rukn al-Dīn. Then that man accepted Islam and became occupied in the study of the religious sciences, so that after a short while, he became the exemplar in every science and became a judicial expert. After that deed, he brought this whole book to the Qāżī, and he rendered it from the Indian language, in thirty chapters, into Arabic. Someone else also put it into Persian, in ten chapters (Baḥr al-ḥayāt, 1311/1894, p. 3).
While this account partly follows the Arabic Mir’āt in mentioning two translations, the reference to a version in thirty chapters is puzzling, since no surviving version of the text fits that description. The frame stories that follow, based on the Hymn of the Pearl and Suhrawardī's Risāla fī ḥaqiqat al-`išq, are presented in a highly prolix fashion that includes a passage from the Hymn of the Pearl not found in the Ḥawż al-ḥayāt (also,the conclusion to the Hymn of the Pearl is missing from the completely new tenth chapter of Baḥr al-ḥayāt, however; see Ernst 2006). It is possible that Muḥammad Ġawṯ had access to an earlier version of the Mir’āt or its first Persian translation that is no longer extant. In any case, Muḥammad Ġawṯ justified this new translation by offering a critique of this earlier Persian translation, based primarily on the inadequate rendering of Indian terms, presumably meaning the mantras.
He [the previous translator] wrote the unintelligible Indian words [i.e., the mantras] in a mixed-up fashion so that the minds of men and imaginations of colleagues did not reach from the words through their meanings to the goal. This faqīr [Muḥammad Ġawṯ] went to Kāmarūp and spent several years in the study and realization of this science to the necessary degree, and he put .it into practice. After some time it occurred to this slave, and several residents of the town of Broach requested, that [because] in this book most of the sciences are established, but most of the words have become unintelligible, he should completely correct it. Therefore, having heard it from the tongue of the yogis, he put it into writing, and named the book Baḥr al-ḥayāt (Baḥr al-ḥayāt, p. 3).
In other words, this is a revision and expansion of the text with reference to oral sources. The text is carefully composed, with half a dozen internal cross references, including a formal quotation from Muḥammad Ġawṯ’s treatise The Five Jewels (ibid., p. 16). This systematic editorial work is typical of Muḥammad Ġawṯ’s writing; after revising the Jawāhir-i ḫamsa, he had all of his disciples correct their copies accordingly.
The Baḥr al-ḥayāt is roughly four to five times as long as the Ḥawż al-ḥayāt, which closely follows the Mir’āt al-ma`ānī; because of the addition of new materials, translation of the core text amounts to only one tenth of this new version. This expansion is particularly evident in chapter ii, where the examples of divination by breath are increased from half a dozen to over 40; chapter iv, where the number of yoga postures expands from 5 to 22, evidently based on a list which circulated in the Dādū Panth; chapter ix, which replaces the summoning of yogini goddesses with a lengthy series of Sufi meditation practices; and chapter x, which presents entirely new material comprised of three parallel cosmologies. Assuming that the Baḥr al-ḥayāt was adapted directly from the Ḥawż al-ḥayāt, the expansion of chapter ix would not be surprising, since the summoning of yogini goddesses had already been cut from some existing manuscripts of the Ḥawż al-ḥayāt, leaving it a mere paragraph in length. Other additions to the text include a cosmic vision inserted in chapter ii (ibid., pp. 13-14), a lengthy description of a one-year retreat in chapter iii (ibid., p. 18), some physiological details in chapter v, and a three-part creation story in chapter x that is both Qur’anic and Puranic (ibid., pp. 66-69). These stpries are firts, a Sufi-style account of creation as the outcome of the interaction between the primal call (Arabic nidā) and its echo (ṣadā); second, an account of the goddess producing Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva from blisters on the palm of her hand; and third, a brief description of the waqwāq tree, known in popular lore for bearing women and animals like fruit from its branches. A version of the post-classical goddess cosmogony is still circulated among Naths in Rajasthan (Gold 1994, pp. 31-32) and Nepal (Bouillier 1993), and by other groups in Madhya Pradesh (Fuchs 1950, pp. 235-7). This account, which evidently draws upon the Devī Bhāgavata Purāṇa, has been satirized by modern Indian reformers who consider it ridiculous (Ambedkar 2008, pp. 90–91; Sarasvati 1908, p. 313).
Those were not the only additions that Muḥammad Ġawṯ made to the text. Each of the seven mantras described in chapter vii are provided with two equivalent ḏikr formulas rather than one, as seen in the Arabic version. Muḥammad Ġawṯ evidently also had access to a version of the practices recorded in the Kāmarūpančāšikā, since 12 examples of its divination techniques are added in chapter ii, and four more in chapter iii. The overall effect of this compilation is an effort to take seriously the experiential value of yogic practices, while placing them firmly into the metaphysical world of Sufism. This technique employs extensive quotations from the Qur’ān and hadith to make certain points. Chapter ix (Baḥr al-ḥayāt, pp. 55-66) consists almost entirely of Sufi practices, in place of the yoginis. Thus the subjugation of the spirit ruling Mercury (ibid., p. 65) is an exact copy of the same practice as found in the Jawāhir-i ḫamsa (Gwāliyārī n.d., p. 262). A more complex relation between the two texts is suggested by the “great supplication” (du`ā-i kabīr), which in the Jawāhir-i ḫamsa (Gwāliyārī n.d., p. 326) is presented as the prayer of Adam, originally composed in Hindi – since Adam knew all languages. Indeed, that prayer, which is repeated in full in the Baḥr al-ḥayat (p. 59), appears to contain the seven mantras from chapter vii, sandwiched in between the opening standard Arabic phrases and a lengthy sequel of quasi-Syriac words that are not recognizable.
The most substantial reflection on the process of translation in the text is an extended comparison of metaphysics according to the jogis and the teachings of Islam, which Muḥammad Ġawṯ inserts at the beginning of chapter vi, on the nature of the body (Baḥr al-ḥayāt, pp. 31-35). Here the yogic emphasis on the eternity of the soul is confronted with passages from the Qur’an on the spirit’s creation by God (17:85) and by God’s own breath (38:72). Strikingly, the former verse had been recognized as authentic by the jogi Bhūjū in his Qur’anically scripted disputation with Samarqandī in the preface. Muḥammad Ġawṯ acknowledges that there is a serious conflict on this issue, and he calls for a comparison (taṭbīq) that will recognize what is correct in the yogis’ experience, and their specialized knowledge of the body, which has been lacking in Sufi teaching: the siddha jogis say, we are in agreement with the realized dervishes on the essence of spirit, and insofar as things descend, appear, and progress, this is true. But in recognizing reality they [the Sufis] have left out the link. The order of jogis has found the link, they preserve and follow it, because from the link of the body, knowledge of reality appears (ibid., p. 33).
This appeal to experience is the justification for the study of yoga. Muḥammad Ġawṯ is systematic in his juxtaposition of yogic and Sufi techniques, but it is the Sufi framework that dominates the interpretation of yogic experience. Muḥammad Ġawṯ’s conviction as to the definitive character of the Greco-Arabic doctrine of four elements excluded any serious engagement with the pan-Indian concept of five elements.
The contents of Baḥr al-hayāt are organized in 10 chapters (bāb) entitled as follows: (i) on the knowledge of the microcosm; (ii) on the influences of the microcosm and its knowledge; (iii) on the knowledge of the heart, the substances, desires, manifestations, and hidden things that appear, and from whence is its reality; (iv) on the knowledge and the quality of discipline (riyāżat, yogic āsana postures) and its states; (v) on the knowledge of the creation of humanity and the kinds of breath and its substances; (vi) on the knowledge of the character of the body and its substances; (vii) on the knowledge of the imagination; (viii) on the description of the corruption of the body, and the appearance of the signs of death; (ix) on the subjugation of spirits; (x) on the story of the creation of the world.
Four copies of the Baḥr al-ḥayāt feature a series of 21 miniature illustrations of yogis in āsana postures: Chester Beatty Library, MS 16, dated probably 1600-1604; University of North Carolina, dated 1130/1718; Salar Jung, Madhahib Farsi 1, dated 1230/1815; and Bodleian Library, S. Digby Or. 222 (previously described as from an unidentified private collection, see Leach 1995, p. 557), contemporaneous with the Beatty copy. The paintings in the Chester Beatty copy may be the oldest visual presentations of yoga postures in portrait form, and the other three illustrated manuscripts are obviously copied from it. The illustration program followed by all four manuscripts is identical, although the later copies show a simpler painting technique and omit some visual details (e.g., the earrings of the yogis are lacking in the UNC copy). Leach has plausibly suggested that this text may have been commissioned by the Mughal prince Salīm (later Jahāngīr) during his residence in Allahabad, when his artists produced numerous illustrated books, many on Indian themes; Leach also distinguishes four different artists to whom she assigns the 21 paintings. A similar sketch of ascetics shown at auction (Sotheby’s 1997, p. 102, no. 137) is such a close resemblance that it may be the work of Leach’s Artist B, most likely drawn from live models. Comparison with the text of other manuscripts demonstrates that the Beatty copy is missing one folio (and perhaps an illustration also), so that it lacks the description of one posture, and the UNC copy has the same omission. This means that chapter iv actually contains accounts of 22 postures (contrary to its explicit announcement that there are 21). It should also be pointed out that the first illustration occurs in chapter ii, following the description (Ernst unpublished, 2.36) of an unnamed kneeling posture assumed while gazing at the nose; it is not the cross-legged alakh posture described in chapter iv (ibid., 4.4), so in fact only 20 of the 22 postures are illustrated. A curious feature of the Beatty copy is the binding, which has on the exterior, in four places, a quotation from the Qur’an (56:79): “And none shall touch it but the purified.” This is remarkable, because that verse commonly adorns the bindings of Qur’ans, as a reminder of the Islamic ritual requirements for handling the sacred text. Whether this binding was applied to the Baḥr al-ḥayāt out of respect, accident, or irony, it is difficult to judge.
The Orientalist impulse to see India as the source of all mysticism has led to exaggerated notions of “Hindu influence” on Sufi texts and practices. From the remarks presented above, it is clear that Muḥammad Ġawṯ applied a strongly Islamic hermeneutic to the yogic practises in the Baḥr al-ḥayāt, so that this text cannot be fairly described as a blueprint for the Hinduization of Islam. But the anxiety about maintaining Islamic boundaries has spilled over even to accounts of the most famous work by Muḥammad Ġawṯ, the Jawāhir-i ḫamsa, which consists almost entirely of prayers and invocations in Arabic – with the exception of the Hindi formula attributed to the Čištī master Farīd al-Dīn Ganj-i Šakkar (Ernst 2008), and the “great supplication” mentioned above. Nevertheless, the 19th-century missionary Hughes described the Jawāhir-i ḫamsa as “largely made up of Hindu customs which, in India, have become part of Muhammadanism” (Hughes 1973 , s.v. “Daʿwah,” p. 73). More recently, Ahmad likewise argued that this text “introduced Hindu mystic practices and litanies into the Muslim mystic discipline” (Ahmad 2012, p. 159), implausibly maintaining that it “is different from all other works produced by the Muslim mystics of India” (ibid., pp. 163-164) and consequently attributing its occult practices to Buddhist tantrism. These observations ignore the long history of the miraculous in Sufism, the prevalence of talismanic magic in Arabic works such as al-Būnī’s (d. 622/1225 or 630/1232) Šams al-ma`ārif (Hamès 2016), and the great importance of the occult both in esoteric movements (Ḥurūfīs, Nuqṭawīs) and at the Safavid and Mughal courts (Moin 2012). So at least with works such as the Jawāhir-i ḫamsa, it is no longer tenable to describe them as Hindu just because they contain occult practices. It is ironic that, in contrast to European Orientalists, later Sufis in the Šaṭṭārī tradition saw Muḥammad Ġawṯ’s achievement as an Islamization of yogic practice, using the metaphor of clothing to describe the process of translation, as this biographical account shows (Ġawṯī 1395/1975, p. 300; Ġawṯī 2012, p. 351):
The Baḥr al-ḥayāt is the translation of the handbook text of the society of Jogis and Sannyasis, in which occur interior practices, visualization exercises, descriptions of holding the breath, and other types of discipline, by which spiritual armies obtain victory over the soldier of the body. These two groups are the chief ascetics, recluses, and monastics of the people of idolatry and infidelity. By the blessings of these very practices and chants (aḏkār), having arrived at the rank of false spirituality (istidrāj) and the excellent rank of visions, they have obtained comprehension of the solution of the riddles of men’s minds, and information to resolve the enigmas of questioners’ thoughts. He (Muḥammad Ġawṯ) separated all these subjects from the Sanskrit expression that is the tongue of the infidels’ flimsy books, dressed them in Persian clothing, loosed the belt of infidelity from the shoulder of those concepts, and adorned them with the prostration of unity and islām, thus freeing them from the dominance of blind adherence with the overwhelming strength of true faith. The master of realization bestowed aid and assistance with Sufi chants and practices. In truth (al-ḥaqq), he made a single casket (ḥuqqa) of precious jewels, and a case for kingly rubies, from the lowly bridle of the beasts of “they are like cattle, nay, more erring” (Qur’ān 7.171), replacing it with an ennobling crown for the Lord of “religion, for God, is islām” (Qur’ān 3.19).
Nonetheless, this account concludes with a note of anxiety about the potential conflicts the texts may cause for Muslim readers: “It is to be hoped that anyone hearing the characteristics of the book will be freed from painful doubts appearing from listening to the description of this text, by reading it quickly and well, and that he will become a witness of the paradise of certainty.” Muḥammad Ġawṯ and at least some of his followers evidently succeeded in putting these doubts to rest.
The Baḥr al-ḥayāt is not just a translation. The multiple additions that Muḥammad Ġawṯ has attached to the previous recension of the Ḥawż al-ḥayāt, both from Indian and Sufi sources, make it an entirely new and independent work. Muḥammad Ġawṯ calls it “this strange and wonderful book,” noting that “in this book most of the sciences are established” (p. 3). Considering the range of subjects addressed in the BH, to describe it as encyclopedic is not an exaggeration. Yet the broad range of topics discussed is in good part due to the interventions of Muḥammad Ġawṯ. He cites the marvelous book as an authority, and he invokes the teachings of the jogis over two dozen times to illustrate his arguments. But they do not fully comprehend the important experiences they have attained; in the view of Muḥammad Ġawṯ, “they do not know the theory of this practice” (p. 44). And that theory is what he has supplied in this expanded version.
The last point to be considered is the ending of the treatise, at first sight surprisingly inconclusive, inasmuch as it is presented as a question: “Form exists because of human company, but where does the human come from?” In terms of the rhetoric established earlier in the text, this final question should not be seen as an admission of failure. Rather, it is a way of focusing the reader’s attention on crucial issues that are explained; for every rhetorical question there are many emphatic answers. The form of the question is furnished by several lines of a Persian poem by Awḥadī Marāġa’ī quoted at the beginning of the Baḥr al-ḥayāt: “On this side is no place, and on that side is creation; / what shaper of desire made links between these two? // Shaper of form and meaning, tell: how much / passion for the Creator is from portraits? . . . One must recognize the Sustainer of the soul; / what is the soul itself, and what is the Sustainer?” (ibid., pp. 3, 8). The highly didactic function of this poem rests precisely on obvious questions, the answers to which are forcefully suggested by the framing of the question. Muḥammad Ġawṯ employs the same technique in several other places, but most obviously in the long title of chapter iii on the heart, which ends with the phrase, “Where is the reality of that from?” Rhetorical answers to such questions are highlighted dozens of times by formulas that are either impersonal (“let it be unveiled”) or in the third person (“one makes known”). In the Sufi conventions adhered to by a serious dervish such as Muḥammad Ġawṯ, these ego-less formulas substitute for first person declarations, and they should be translated as “I now reveal” or the equivalent. Anyone puzzled by the question at the end of the Baḥr al-ḥayāt has only to turn the pages of this book to find the answers.
Marginal comments in two manuscripts (Mawlana Azad Library, Habibganj 21/112 Farsiyya taṣawwuf, and Liaquat National Memorial Library 46), which overlap considerably in content, indicate that a tradition of studying the Baḥr al-ḥayāt continued within the Šaṭṭārī order, linking the teachings of the text to another writing by Muḥammad Ġawṯ, the Kalīd-i maḫāzin. Šāh Muḥammad Riḍā Šaṭṭārī Qādirī Lāhūrī (d. 1118/1706) incorporated yogic practices from Baḥr al-ḥayāt into his Sufi treatise Ādāb-i murīdī, MS 5319 `irfān, Ganj Bakhsh, Islamabad There are also indications in the manuscripts that the descriptions of 22 āsana postures in chapter iv were originally accompanied by Hindawī verses (sabda) that illustrated the effects of each exercise, and functioning as another kind of commentary. The popularity of Muḥammad Ġawṯ’s Jawāhir-i ḫamsa in its Arabic translation ensured that practices with yogic elements, such as the “great supplication,” were known from North Africa to Indonesia. Likewise, the extended quotations from the Baḥr al-ḥayāt in a handbook of Sufi practices produced in Libya, Muḥammad al-Sanūsī’s al-Silsabīl al-ma`īn, transmitted these teachings to audiences far beyond its original readership (Ernst 2012).
v) Information on colophon; vi) Description of miniatures/illustrations; vii) Other remarks; viii) Information on catalogue(s)
Tashkent, Sharqshunoslik instituti, 7042-6119, ff. 65, ii)
Semenov 1952, p. 57.
Phulwari Sharif, Ḫānqāh Mujībiyya, ii)
Ahmad 2012, p. 175..
London, India Office, Ethé 2802/6, ff.131b-139b, ii)
Chapter 9 only, in an anthology of devotional and meditation texts, viii)
Ethé 1903, col. 1513.
Islamabad , National Archives, majmu’a Islam 18, ff. 44, ii)
3 jumādī al-awwal 1093/9 May 1682, vii)
Chapter ix only, viii)
Nawšāhī 2019, p. 20.
Aligarh, Mawlana Azad Library, Habibganj 21/112 Farsiyya taṣawwuf, ff. 76, ii)
9 ṣafar 1156/4 April 1743, iii) Ġulām Ḥusayn wuld-i Sulṭān Muḥammad Banī Isrā’īl Kūlawī, iv) Yūsuf Ḫān Jīv.
Aligarh, Mawlana Azad Library, Subhanullah 29767/28 , ff. 38, ii)
Ḥusayn 1930, p. 13.
London, British Library, Add. 5651/2, ff. 36-39, vii)
part of chapter 2 only, viii)
Rieu 1879, vol. 1, p. 59b.
Lahore, Punjab University 6478, ff. 63, ii)
9 ḏū al-ḥijja 1199/12 October 1785, viii)
Nawšāhī 2020, p. 345.
London, British Library, India Office, Ashburner 197, ff. 75, viii)
Ross – Browne 1902, p. 116.
London. 2002 Ethé, India Office, British Library, pp. 165, vii)
missing parts of chapters 3 and 9 and all of chapter 10, marginal notations of Hindi terms in devanagari script, viii)
Ethé 1903, cols. 1113-4.
Karachi, National Museum, 1961-908, viii)
Munzavī 1364š./1985, vol. 4, p. 2146.
Karachi, National Museum, 1961-909, viii)
Munzavī 1364š./1985, vol. 4, p. 2146.
New Delhi, Jamia Hamdard Library, 1689, vii)
A copy of Ms. Hyderabad, Salar Jung Museum, taṣawwuf 66/16, contining only the first page of the text; his copy bears the seal of Mīrān Sayyid Ḥusaynī Saqqāf ibn Ja`far Ta`ẓīm Turk Qādirī, 1233/1817-8, viii)
Persian Research Centre 1999, p. 417.
Achalpur, Kitāb-ḫāna-yi Jāmi` Masjid, ii)
1 rabī` al-awwal 1239 / 5 November 1823, iii) `Uyūż Beg Ḫān, viii)
Qāsimī 1386/2007, p. 66, no. 58.
Hyderabad, Telangana Government Oriental Manuscript Library & Research Institute, taṣawwuf fārsī 713, ii)
1 rabī` al-awwal 1239 / 5 November 1823, viii)
Kanturi 2012, vol. 1, p. 404.
Karachi, National Museum, 1973-235, pp. 82, ii)
Munzavī 1364š./1985, vol. 4, p. 2146.
Sargodha, Bahluwal, Mawlana Qudrat Allah collection, i) Kashmir, ii)
Munzavī 1364š./1985, vol. 4, p. 2146.
Islamabad, Ganj Bakhsh, 6298, pp. 112, ii)
6 ša`bān 1279/26 January 1863, viii)
Munzavī 1363š./1984, vol. 3, p. 1488.
Karachi, National Museum, 1972-104, viii)
Munzavī 1364š./1985, vol. 4, p. 2146.
Islamabad, Liaquat National Memorial Library, 46, pp. 142, viii)
Munzavī 1364š./1985, vol. 4, p. 2146.
Ahmedabad, Dargāh `Aliyya Čištiyya, S. no. 273, 11 ff..
Ahmedabad, Pir Muhammad Shah Library, no. 1218, 168 ff.
Hyderabad, Telangana Government Oriental Manuscript Library & Research Institute (Asafiyya), Tarikh Persian 607, viii)
Ahmad 1963, p. 277.
London, British Library, Or. 12188, pp. 165, viii)
Meredith-Owens 1968, p. 37.
Lahore, Muhammad Iqbal Mujaddidi, R. no. 484, 73 ff., viii)
Mujaddidi — Ansari — Mahmood 2015, p. 232.
Ahmedabad, Pir Muhammad Shah Library, ff. 33, vii)
labelled Hawż al-hayat on obverse of first page; the text ends in the middle of chapter 4, viii)
Qureshi 1985, p. 295.
Dublin, Chester Beatty Library, MS 16, ff. 64., i) Allahabad, iv) alīm (Jahāngīr), vi)
Illustrated with 21 miniatures of yogic postures., viii)
Arnold 1936, vol. 1, pp. 80-82; vol. 3, p. 98; Leach 1995, pp. 556-64..
Chapel Hill NC, University of North Carolina, Rare Book Collection PK3791 .A46 1718, pp. 1-123, ii)
11 rabī` al-awwal 1130/12 February 1718, iii) Sayyid Muḥammad `Alī al-Ḥusaynī, vi)
21 miniature illustrations of yoga postures, following the same program as Ms. Dublin, Chester Beatty Library, MS 16, viii)
Fogg 1996, p. 157.
Oxford, Bodleian Library, S. Digby Or. 222, ff. 20-60.
Hyderabad, Salar Jung Oriental Library, Madhahib Farsi 1, ff. 66, ii)
21 miniatures of yogic postures, following the same program as Chester Beatty Library, MS 16, viii)
Ashraf 1983, vol. 8, pp. 338-339.
Lithographs: Baḥr al-ḥayāt, Delhi, n.p.. 1890. Baḥr al-ḥayāt, Bombay, Fayż al-Karīm Press, 1310/1892. Baḥr al-ḥayāt,
Mīr Ḥasan, ed., Delhi, Maṭba`-i Riżvī, 1311/1894, pp. 72,
On p. 15, the editor has inserted 11 lines of verse on divination by breath from the Muḥīṭ, i.e., Muḥīṭ-i ma`rifat, on the grounds of their obvious similarity with this text; likewise, a section on āsana from the Muḥīṭ-i ma`rifat is included on pp. 70-71.
Editions: “Šarḥ-i aḥvāl o āṯār-i Šāh Muḥammad Ġawṯ Gwāliyārī, va taṣḥīḥ-i matn-i Baḥr-i ḥayāt”,
Muḥammad Idrīs A`vān, Tehran, PhD dissertation, Persian Language and Literature Group, Academy of Foreign Languages, Scientific Research Unit, Islamic Azad University, 1351/1972. “Muqaddima, taṣḥīḥ wa ta`līq bar kitāb-i Baḥr al-ḥayāt az Muḥammad Ġawṯ Gwāliyārī”,
Nawšīn Khuddāmī, ed., Tehran, MA thesis, Dānišgāh-i Āzād-i Islāmī, Wāḥid-i Tihrān-i Markazī, Dāniškada-i Adabiyyāt wa `Ulūm-i Insānī., 1394/2016.
Marginal comments in Ms. Aligarh, Mawlana Azad Library, Habibganj 21/112 Farsiyya taṣawwuf, with additional comments included in the text itself in chapters one to three.
Marginal comments in Ms. Islamabad, Liaquat National Memorial Library 46.
English translation: Chapter iv of the Bahr al-hayat, by Muḥammad Ġawṯ Gwaliyari, translated from the Persian by Carl W. Ernst, an adjunct to the Smithsonian exhibit, "Yoga: The Art of Transformation," see http://www.asia.si.edu/explore/yoga/chapter-4-bahr-al-hayat.asp#intro.
English translation: Ernst, Carl W., unpublished, “Translation of the Baḥr al-ḥayāt."
Urdu translation: Ḥayāt samandar, trans. Šāh `Alī, Andhra Pradesh Oriental Manuscript Research Library (Āṣafiyyya) 1997 Tasawwuf Urdu, ff. 1-47 (introduction, chapters i and ii), 63b-92a (chapters vii and iii).
Urdu translation: Iksīr-i ḥayāt, Urdū tarjuma-i baḥr al-ḥayāt [Urdu], Delhi, Islāmī Press, 1315/1897.
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Ernst, Carl W., 2019, "Baḥr al-ḥayāt", Perso-Indica. An Analytical Survey of Persian Works on Indian Learned Traditions, F. Speziale - C. W. Ernst, eds.available at http://www.perso-indica.net/work/bahr_al-hayat.
|Main Persian Title:||Baḥr al-ḥayāt|
|English Translation of Main Persian Title:||The Ocean of Life|
|Year / Period of Composition:||956/1549|
|Place:||Bharuch, Ahmedabad - Gujarat|
|Other Languages of Work:||Old Hindi/Hindavi|
|Local Informants:||Siddha jogis (yogis)|
|Quoted sources on India (Unknown or not existent):||