The Chishti order was founded by Shaykh Abu Is’haq (d. 940 or 966). A native of Syria, Shaykh Abu Is’haq was sent by his spiritual guide to teach in the town of Chisht (near Heart, Afghanistan).

The order he established was later nourished and popularized by the eminent Shaykh Khwajah Moinuddin Chishti (d. 1236), originally of Iran, who studied and taught in Central Asia, Iraq, Arabia and India. Known for his generosity, warmth and compassion, Shaykh Moinuddin Chishti spread a message of peace and love. His commitment to service earned him the title  “the one who shows kindness to the poor.” Much of his later life was spent in Ajmer, India, which remains a major centre of Chishti teachings to this day.