Syed Sharif-ud-Din Abdur Rehman (Bulbul Shah)
According to Zareef Ahmad Zareef, a well-known humorist-poet in Kashmir, the first Sufi Muslim saint from Central Asia to have visited Kashmir was Abdur Rehman. He later became popular as ‘Bulbul Shah’. This renowned saint of the highest spiritual order arrived in Kashmir during the reign of Bodh ruler Ranchan Shah.
The shrine of Hazrat Syed Sharif-ud-Din Abdur Rehman, aka Bulbul Shah, the first Muslim Sufi saint from Central Asia to have arrived in Kashmir in 1324 AD, is located in downtown Srinagar. This shrine was recently renovated.
Abdur Rehman — believed to have traveled all the way from Turkistan — settled in Kashmir roughly around 1324 AD (725 A.H). His shrine is located in Srinagar city at a place called ‘Bulbul Langar’ (now Bulbul Lankar). It is an important place from both a historical and religious perspective.
A Kashmiri myth about Hazrat Abdur Rehman is that he was so absorbed and engrossed in meditation that he wouldn’t disturb the songbird nightingale (Bulbul) sitting on his head.
Many saints from different places like Central Asia and Persia (now Iran) have visited Kashmir.