Sheikh Abdullah



Sheikh Abdullah Sirr Dan al Jamal was a Sufi Master of the Naqshbandi Order. ‘Sheikh’ is a title of respect, with his name meaning ‘Slave of Allah – Knower of the Secrets of Beauty’.

Born John Ross, to an aristocratic Scottish family, he was given the best of English educations. A remarkable man by anyone’s definition, he was a successful businessman, war hero, senior civil servant and patron of the arts. Whilst refining his mastery of this world, he combined his natural spirituality with a sincere and concentrated study of Sufism, to become a Sheikh in the distinguished Naqshbandi Sufi Order.

Part of his uniqueness was, that whilst being a Sufi Master, he had a deep understanding of the ‘Western mind’ and Western mysticism. As Sufism was born in the East, this gave him the unique quality of being a master of the East and the West; of this world (the dunya) and the hereafter (the akhira) and of the two Sufi Wings – Islam (sharia) and The Sufi Way (tariqa).

Sheikh Abdullah gave talks and guidance to many students, with the majority of these being Westerners. Consequently, he has made a significant contribution to the emergence of Sufism in the West over the last 50 years. He was capable of leading a student to the centre of his or her being, if the student was ready.

He also loved the tradition of the Mevlevi Sufi order, founded by Mevlana Jalaluddin Rumi, which resulted in his training pupils in the ceremony of the Whirling Dervishes.

Sheikh Abdullah was living in Australia when he was reunited with his Creator in 2000.


Sheikh Abdullah in the gardens of the Hirka-i-Serif Mosque in Istanbul


Calligraphy Seal of Hadrat Sheikh Abdullah Sirr Dan al-Jamal
“Let this be a doorway to my presence so that your thoughts canbe with me and my thoughts, in turn, can be with you.”

Behold with awe the Majesty of the Name within this name,
And remember with each heartbeat to repeat it always with love
And true devotionThus ecstasy, in harmony with that state
Where all is absolutely still, will flood your being
To drown both time and distance with all your senses, in the Ocean of His Mercy
Where that Love which lies behind the Beauty of His Majesty
Is Truth and Truth alone.

~ Hadrat Sheikh Abdullah Sirr Dan al-Jamal.


Sheikh Abdullah in France