Abu Mo’in Hamid al-Din Nasir ibn Khusraw was born in 1004 in Qobadiyan in the district of Marv, in the eastern Iranian province of Khurasan. He and at least two of his brothers enjoyed high positions in the administrative ranks of the Saljuq court (he says he himself was in the revenue department), and there is evidence that he was also familiar with the court of previous dynasty, the Ghaznavids. Based on the quality of his writings, it is obvious he received an excellent education in the sciences, literatures and philosophies of his time, including the study of Greek and Neoplatonic philosophy. He tells us he examined the doctrines of the different Islamic schools and was not satisfied until he found and understood the Ismaili faith.
From this event of conversion, he embarked on his journey, during which time he spent three years in the Ismaili court in Cairo of the Fatimid caliph, al-Mustansir (1029-1094). He left Cairo as the head (hujjat) of Ismaili missionary activities in his home province of Khurasan. At some point, he was forced by the authorities to flee for his life; he lived the rest of his life in exile further east, in the Pamir Mountains in Badakhshan, located in today’s Tajikistan and Afghanistan.