Abjad is a numeral system in which each letter of the alphabet is assigned a value. It is an ancient practice to compose chronograms for events using the abjad system – like dates of birth, or death-dates, names given at birth; authors would name their books such that, the letters when added using the abjad system, tallied with the year in which it was written. In other words, a chronogram would be chosen as the title of the book. For example Tamhīd e Īmān, was written in 1326, and tallies thus:
Alahazrat was a wizard in chronograms – the names of many of his books are chronograms and his proficiency was such that he could compute ad hoc chronograms from Qur’ānic verses. He calculated the year of his passing from the following Qur’ānic verse:
This part of the verse adds up to 1340; Alahazrat had written this on a piece of paper which was found under his pillow after his passing. He had also noted that if it was read without wāw, the sum would be 1334, the year Mawlānā Waşīy Aĥmad Sūratī passed away.