The founder and principal of As-Suffa Institute & Outreach, Shaykh Zahir Mahmood was born and raised in the United Kingdom. After formal school studies, Shaykh Zahir Mahmood enrolled onto the Alimiyyah course at Darul Uloom, Bury. Shaykh Zahir Mahmood’s journey of studying the sacred sciences took them from the UK to Pakistan’s Jamiah Uloom Al-Islamiyyah, Banori Town and concluded with an ijaazah to teach from Darul Uloom, Newcastle, South Africa where Shaykh Zahir Mahmood benefitted from the teaching and guidance of erudite scholars like Molana Qasim Sema (may Allah preserve them).
With an enthusing spirit and vision for the progress of the Deen in the UK, Shaykh Zahir Mahmood returned and took on the role of the Khateeb for Jami Masjid- one of the largest in Birmingham, whilst studying for a BA in Islamic Theology from Birmingham University.
Through the lens of concern for the community and with an understanding of their culture and needs, Shaykh Zahir Mahmood opened As-Suffa Institute that comprised of the evening maktab for children and the part time Alimiyyah course providing comprehensive teaching of the sacred sciences for those who could not commit to full time study. Today, by the grace of Allah and then the determination of Shaykh Zahir Mahmood, As-Suffa Institute caters the full time and part time Alimiyyah course, Islamic Studies Diplomas, post-graduate courses, modular sciences, youth facilities and regular weekend courses. As-Suffa Outreach which began in 2015 was borne from the aspiration to act upon the Sunnah of the Prophet (peace be upon Him) in its totality- by serving each member of the community, in particular those who are the most vulnerable. Today the outreach branch has a Homeless Project, Foodbank, Mental Health Clinics, Domestic Violence Counselling, Legal Advice Help and local and national zakat distribution.
Shaykh Zahir Mahmood is an internationally renowned speaker and has travelled extensively, from Barbados to Malaysia, with the objective of reviving the hearts with Islamic knowledge. The unique delivery style of Shaykh Zahir Mahmood, radiating zeal and candour saw the success of the Islamic History series, which looked at the late and recent Muslim narrative in a revolutionary depth in the English language, and led to annual retreats studying the history and lessons of Muslim Spain.
May Allah Azzawajjal accept his efforts, grant him the ability to continue serving the community and bestow His Grace upon the teachers and students of Shaykh Zahir Mahmood.