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Takht-e-Sulaiman in Ibn Battuta's Writings

Updated: May 23, 2023


Takht-e-Sulaiman in Ibn Battuta's Writings

The legendary explorer Ibn Battuta, in his travelogue Ibn Battuta writes of the legend surrounding Takht-e-Sulaiman, a peak which stands some 1,000 feet above sea level, in the Koh-e-Sulaiman ranges, in a green valley, situated between the regions of North Waziristan, Zhob and Dera Ismail Khan.

Legend has it that Hazrat Suleman (A) climbed over to the mountain ranges—which have now been named after him—and gazed upon the lands of Hind that were West of the mountain range. These were the lands that constitute present-day India, Pakistan and Bangladesh. Seeing nothing but a cloud of darkness enveloping the vast lands, Hazrat Suleman decided to return to Persia, rather than venturing into Hind.

There is one peak in particular, Takht-e-Suleman (the Throne of Suleman) from where he stood as he commanded his djinns to do his bidding. He is also said to have prayed there. Thus, a rock formation at the peak is now referred to as his throne. The Koh-e-Suleman mountain ranges are famed for two reasons: their unique, natural rock formations, and for being haunted. The rock sculptures are the work of his djinns, some of whom continue to live on in the area.

However, the jutted rock which makes the peak itself is believed to shield itself from the gaze of those who do not believe in the throne or in its truth. The ascent to the throne is tough. However, if one does manage to scale the peak, see the throne, offer prayers there, and make it down the near vertical descent safe and sound, it is a testament to the individual being pious, chaste, and a good man or woman in the eyes of Allah. Besides this test of character, it is said that whatever you ask God for after you pray at the throne will be granted to you.

Locals believe that no individual of strong character has ever prayed to Allah for something on the throne with a clear conscience, and clean heart, which was not given to him—it is a place where all prayers are accepted.

As the locals call the djinns, the “deewan-o-peeriyan” do not bother outsiders and tourists unless they come with malicious intent. The peak is also home to the grave of Qais Abdul Rasheed, a descendant of Hazrat Suleman and a legend in himself. But that story is for another tale.

There is also a site in Iran with the same name, Takht-e-Soleyman, in the province of West Azerbaijan. It dates back to the Sasanian Empire. It lies midway between Urmia and Hamadan, very near the present-day town of Takab, and 400 km west of Tehran. The Zoroastrian sanctuary was later converted into various other temples, by various other invaders, like the Mongols, and later on, the Muslims.

There are three other legends associated with mountains and Hazrat Suleman in Pakistan: that of Pirghar Peak, Waziristan, which is believed to be the point from where his wife took one last look at her homeland. The second is that of Hazrat Suleiman (A) building a jail for the supernatural on Tirich Mir, a peak in Chitral. Furthermore, the mountain is also known for being the abode of the fairies. The third is that of , a cave city built in the mountains, believed to have been made by the jinns on the orders of Hazrat Suleiman near the town of Bela in Balochistan. The town is also known as the Cave City of Lasbella, the Cave Dwellings of Gondrani, the House of the Spirits, and the Town of Mai Gondrani.

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