(redirected from fakeer)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Wikipedia.


(fäkēr`, fā`kər), [Arab.,=poverty], in Islam, usually an initiate in a Sufi order. The title fakir is borne with the understanding that poverty is the need to be in relation to God. This term, along with its Persian equivalent, dervish, was extended in Western usage to Indian ascetics and yogis, and incorrectly used generally for itinerant magicians and wonder-workers. Each Sufi order (tariqa) traces its ancestry to a mystic teacher and, beyond him, through a chain of transmission (silsila) to the Prophet Muhammad and ultimately, to God. Sufi orders began to organize in the tumultuous 12th cent. although their histories claim to emanate from the formative period of Islam, with its ecstatic and literary Sufi figures. The oldest attested extant order is probably the Qadiriyya, founded by Abd al-Qadir al-Jilani (d. 1166) in Baghdad; it is currently one of the most geographically widespread. Other important orders include the Ahmadiyya (notably in Egypt); Naqshbandiyya (central and S Asia); Nimatullahiyya (Iran); Rifaiyya (Egypt, SW Asia); Shadhiliyya (N Africa, Arabia); Suhrawardiyya Chishtiyya (Asia); and Tijaniyya (Maghreb). A disciple (murid) is typically introduced to the order through an ahd, a covenant binding him to his individual teacher (shaykh, murshid, or pir) and follows an extensive regimen of initiation that might include seclusion, sleep deprivation, and fasting, with possible dispensations from the basic obligations of Islam. The religious service common to all orders is the dhikr, the "remembering" or "invocation" of God. Dhikr services vary in form: some involve heightened religious exaltations, such as the whirling of the Mawlawiyya (Mevlevis), often leading to criticism from scholastic religious leaders. The Sufi orders, by tolerating syncretisms, were instrumental in the dissemination of Islam through trans-Saharan Africa, S Asia, and SE Asia. See SufismSufism
, an umbrella term for the ascetic and mystical movements within Islam. While Sufism is said to have incorporated elements of Christian monasticism, gnosticism, and Indian mysticism, its origins are traced to forms of devotion and groups of penitents (zuhhad
..... Click the link for more information.


See J. S. Trimingham, The Sufi Orders in Islam (1971).



(1) A Muslim mendicant dervish.

(2) In India, in addition to the word’s basic meaning, a servant in an agricultural commune who performs Muslim rituals associated with the agricultural cycle.

(3) In certain contexts, a magician, animal trainer, mindreader, or soothsayer; it is in this sense that the word became common in Europe.

(4) In the circus and on the variety stage, one who demonstrates his body’s insensitivity to physical pain—achieved through prolonged training—or performs acts of prestidigitation.


Vadimov, A. A., and M. A. Trivas. Ot magov drevnosti do illiuzio-nistov nashikh dnei. Moscow, 1966.


, faqir, fakeer
1. a Muslim ascetic who rejects wordly possessions
2. a Hindu ascetic mendicant or holy man
References in periodicals archive ?
Shafi Fakeer, Shaman Ali Mirali and Farzana Bahar are the best choice, as they can sing in Sindhi, Seraiki, Urdu, and also in Baluchi.
I am a Fakeer, and I have no demands," he told ANI, after reaching Delhi to pay tribute at Rajghat on the 148th birth anniversary of 'Father of Nation' Mahatma Gandhi.
independent), Khursheed Begum (PPP), Zulqarnan Haider (independent), Zia Ullah (independent), Farooq Ahmad Khan (independent), Muhammad Arshad Fakeer (Pakistan Justice Party), Sana Ullah Masti Khel (PML-N), Muhammad Yousaf (JUI), Maulana Ghulam Hussain Rizvi (independent), Nadeem Ahmad Khan (independent), Nighat Yasmeen (independent).
The protest was led by PTI MNA Lalchand Malhi, Arbab Anwer Jabbar of the Arbab group, Advocate Shahnawaz Hingorjo, Fakeer Irshad Kumbhar, Subhan Samejo, Advocate Wasand Thari, Ghansham Malhi and others.
Worst ever flood wreaked havoc in Goth Ghulam Muhammad Jamali, Goth Faisal Fakeer Lashari, Goth Mir Doda Khan, Goth Choki Jamali, Goth Mir Feroze Khan Jamali, Goth Janan Jamali, Goth Dur Muhammad Jamali and Goth Ibrahim Zehri.
MNA Fakeer Sher Mohammad Malani, MPA Dost Ali Rahimoon, Dr Ghulam Haider Samejo, Comrade Nandlal Malhi and other senior party leaders were present there when Dr Malani appeared before the media personnel, waiting outside, after meeting Senator Gyanchand.
Tenders are invited for minor irrigation - mission kakatiya phase - ii - fakeer kunta, jalalpur (v), balkonda (m), nizamabad dist
This was the golden era of Mehdi Hassan, Ahmed Rushdi, Allan Fakeer, Iqbal Bano and Noor Jehan.
I always try to remain in touch with these Peers, Fakeers, Hakims and Faith Healers to know how they work.
Sheermaal refers to an event he witnessed that filled his soul with "indignation and disgust": the slaughter of a spotted calf--"for whom a thousand holy Fakeers would have risked their lives"--devoured with "savage satisfaction" by the English and not "one pang of remorse" (104).