A clergy, political activist and an interpreter of Koran, and son of Ayatollah Seyyed AboulHassan Talqani, Seyyed Mahmud was born in Gelird village of Talqan, 1911. He received his early education in there, and simultaneous with Reza Khan's autocracy, he moved to Tehran with his family. He entered Qom religious school and attended the classes of great masters such as Ayattollah Hojjat and Ayattollah Khansari.
After long studies in Qom, he left for Tehran with Ayatollah Haeri's permission and was engaged in the teaching of Islamic disciplines and interpretation of Koran in Sepahsalar School. He was arrested and condemned to six months confinement for defending a veiled woman in her clash with Reza Shah's forces.
He founded the Islamic center of Tehran and published Danesh Amuz journal as its publication. He participated actively in the Islamic association of the University of Tehran and Islamic Association of Engineers. He was active in the current of nationalization of oil industry and had close relationship with Ayatollah Kashani. He was elected in the seventeen elections from Mazandaran, but for the annulment of elections in some constituencies, he didn't enter the Majlis.
Subsequent to the 1953 coup, some nationalist and religious activists formed the national resistance movement secretly of which he was a member. He was accused of giving refuge to Navvab safavi, who was in charge of an attempt on Hossein Ala's life, and was arrested for a time. He founded Iran Liberty Movement with some religious activists in 1961. Subsequent to 5th June affair, he issued a strong declaration titled "The Autocrat Sheds Blood". Again he was arrested and condemned to ten years imprisonment. He turned Qasr prison to a university for political prisoners. During these years, he compiled Partovi az Koran (Lights from Koran), and Islam and ownership. Eventually, the Pahlavi regime was forced to release him under pressures from foreign and domestic public opinions. In the sermons of Id e Fitr prayers, he asked to help Palestinians, and held a commemoration for Jamal Abdul Nasser in Hedayat mosque. Again arrests and exiles were followed, the last of which was for ten years. At the outset of Islamic revolution, the Pahlavi regime released him and some other political prisoners to soothe the angry people. He headed the poll in the first post revolution elections for Majlis of experts.
He was trusted amply by Imam Khomeini and was appointed by him as a member of Islamic revolution council. He devoted his whole life to the causes of Islam, Iran and revolution. Eventually, he died in 10th September 1979, and was buried in Behesht e Zahra after an exceptional funeral. Among his works are: Partovi az Nhaj ol Balaghe, Azadi va estebdad, Marjaeit va fatva, Darsi az Koran, and We return to God.