"Maulawi", "Maulavi" and "Maulana" are all three the same person, idea, and concept. They come from the Arabic word "maula", which means "leader, master, lord", and "Maulana" means "Our leader, lord, or master". It is a term generally used for a learned man or a scholar of Islam.

"Maulavi" is the Farsi version of the same word because Arabs pronounce the "vav" as a "w" sound and Iranians prounounce it as a "v" sound.

Maulana "Our Master, our Lord" is the title given to various leaders of Sufi Muslim groups, the most famous being, "Jalal a din e Rumi" or "Maulana", "our (Sufi) leader, "our Sufi Master". Jalal a din e Rumi or "Maulana" is a famous Sufi Iranian poet, born in Balkh, Afghanistan (born 1207 AD) who fled the Mongolian invasions and settled in Konya, Turkey (1215-1220 AD) and founded the Whirling Dervishes Sufi order (died in 1273 AD).

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