Wasif Ali Wasif (15 January 1929 – 18 January 1993) was a teacher, writer, poet and sufi from Pakistan. He was famous for his unique literary style. He used to write short pieces of prose on topics like love, life, fortune, fear, hope, expectation, promise, prayer, happiness, sorrow and so on. He was the regular columnist of Pakistan Urdu Newspaper Nawa-i-Waqt. In his life most of his columns were combined to form books with his own selected title. He did poetry in Urdu and Punjabi languages. Probably no contemporary Urdu writer is more cited in quotations than he is. Later years he used to answer questions in specially arranged gatherings at Lahore attended by the notable community. Some of these sessions were recorded in audio and were later published as Guftgoo (talk) series. His mehfils never had a set subject nor did he lecture on chosen topics. His way was to ask people if they had questions and then he responded to these in his highly original style. He has left behind over 35 books to his credit and his thought was more on mysticism, spirituality and humanity.
Wasif Ali Wasif was born in 15 January, 1929 at District Khushab. His father Malik Muhammed Arif was a teacher. He received his religious education under the supervision of his father. He got primary education in a local school in Khushab. He passed Matriculation examination from Govt. High School Khushab in 1944. His maternal grandfather, a skilled educationist, was appointed as Headmaster at a Govt. school in Jang. Therefore, he was sent to his maternal. He did F.Sc from Govt. Inter college Jhang and graduation from Govt. Degree college Jhang. He was a hardworking student who passed every examination by obtaining first division. Then he moved to Lahore; here he obtained MSC in Mathematics from Government Islamia College, Civil Lines, Lahore and Masters in English from Government College, Lahore.
asif Ali Wasif died on January 18, 1993. Being famous for Sufism and respected by many people, he is usually referred to as Hazrat Wasif Ali Wasif. His shrine is located in Lahore at 25 Bahawalpur Road, near Chawk Chuburjee. His Urs (Religious Festival) is celebrated every year from 22nd to 24th of the month of Rajab.
Hazrat Wasif Ali Wasif did his master in mathematics. At first he taught in some private institutions for sometime, but then he founded Lahore College for English later 'Lahore English college' in 1958. In a short span of time his fame as a very able, benign, competent and dutiful teacher spread around. It was due to ever increasing number of students he started teaching students in two shifts.
Hazrat Wasif Ali Wasif was so much given to silence. He spent most part of the day in this tranquillity, but when he spoke there was nothing that was not quotable. His written and spoken words are quotable for their content as well as their construction. Master of aphorism, he has almost a miraculous ability to capture a rainbow of meaning in a few dewdrops of well chosen words. Of this it were writings in newspaper that secured him a permanent place in the gallery of stylist prose writers. Though his main claim to fame is his writings, a select circle knows that he was an equally great a conversationalist. Ashfaq Ahmed, the conversationalist par excellence of our time has said, “The sentences we concoct are our piece of craft, Wasif’s lines came from somewhere else.” Hanif Ramay is of the view that “Wasif’s prose influences like the poetry of Iqbal.” Few original thinkers have expressed so lofty thoughts in so simple a style. He is as such a common man’s philosopher.
Hazrat Wasif Ali Wasif was indeed a dervesh and sufi and in the final part of his life acted as a murshid to many.He was a person in possession of great knowledge and wisdom. He considered himself as a continuation of the great Sufi tradition, imparting useful knowledge, strong faith, hope and love to the ailing hearts. Qudratullah Shahab, Ashfaq Ahmed and Hanif Ramay attended lectures of Wasif Ali Wasif.
It was in the last writing of Qudratullah Shahab which appeared in the Urdu Newspaper Daily Jang describing that if a person reaches a crossroads of his life, he can find a right path through Wasif Ali Wasif.