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Showing posts from January, 2012

The Spirit of Truth

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بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ
It is written in the Gospel according to John that Jesus (a.s.) said to his disciples the following:
John 16:12-14 12 “I have still much to say to you, but it is beyond your reach as yet.  13 It will be for him, the truth-giving Spirit, when he comes, to guide you into all truth.  He will not utter a message of his own; he will utter the message that has been Given to him; and he will make plain to you what is still to come.  14 And he will bring honour to me, because it is from me that he will derive what he makes plain to you.”
The ‘Spirit of Truth’ is the Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.).  In fact, one of his titles was ‘The Prophet of Truth’.  He was known also as ‘al-Amin’, ‘The Trustworthy One’ before he was proclaimed a prophet.  The ‘Truth’ is the submission to one God, the One God of Abraham (a.s.) and Ishmael (a.s.), their forefather.  Islam is known as ad-Din al-Haqq, the Religion of Truth.  Indeed, with the coming of Islam, Revelation was Complet…

Beyond the Veil

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‎بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ
“If any one were to say to the embryo in the womb:
‘Outside is a world well-ordered, A pleasant earth, broad and long, Wherein are a thousand delights And many things to eat. Mountains and seas and plains, fragrant orchards, Gardens and sown fields. A sky very lofty and full of light, sunshine And moonbeams and innumerable stars. Its wonders are beyond description: Why do you stay, drinking blood, In this dungeon of filth and pain?’
The embryo, being what it is, Would turn away in utter disbelief, For the blind have no imagination.
So when the saints tell of a world without smell or colour, None of the vulgar hearkens to them: Sensual desire is a barrier huge and stout – Even as the embryo’s craving for the blood that nourishes it in its low abodes Debarred it from the perception of the external world, Since it knows no food but blood.”
Mawlana Jalal ad-Din ar-Rumi (q.s.)

The Fruit of the Old Man

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بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

Whenever the companions of Rasulullah (s.a.w.) reaped their first harvest, they brought early, fresh fruits to him.  He would then distribute them among those who sat around him.  One morning, a poor man brought one fruit from his small farm and gave it to the Prophet (s.a.w.).
The Prophet (s.a.w.) accepted the gift, tasted it and then went on eating it alone while the companions watched.  One of those present meekly said, "Ya Rasulullah, have you overlooked the right of those who watch while you eat?"
Our Prophet (s.a.w.) smiled and waited until the man who had brought the fruit had left.  Then he said, "I tasted the fruit and it was not yet ripe.  Had I allowed any of you to have some of it, someone would have definitely shown his distaste, thus disappointing the poor man who brought this gift.  Rather than make him feel bitter, I accepted the bitterness."
Guard the hearts of those who come and those whom you meet.  Each and ever…

Heaven was...

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بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

Heaven was a park bench on a long beach, On a cloudy night, with forever in reach. And the world moved yet time stood still. I drank it all in but I never had my fill. Perhaps the multitudes did create much ado. Yet I could see nothing but You.  You.  Just You.
Heaven was that Close Embrace we Had. Every moment of Aching Thirst to Drive me mad. Every moment of me in You until ‘I’ was ‘You’. Every vision of possibilities and impossibilities so new. Of that aching Love so beautifully intense. You were Present, the Presence of my Absence.
Take away the world and leave me that bench. Take away ‘me’ and leave no heart to wrench. Take away the other and the between in between. Remove the Veil of the Unveiled until it is Seen The Reality of You is Me and the Me in You. No more You or I; only what is True.
Terence Nunis

The Secret of the Lover

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بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

The Sulthan of Lovers, Mawlana Jalal ad-Din ar-Rumi (q.s.) said:
Love has nothing to do with The five senses and the six directions:
Its Goal is only to Experience The Attraction exerted by the Beloved.
Afterwards, perhaps, Permission Will come from God:
The Secrets that ought to be told with be told With an Eloquence nearer to the Understanding That these Subtle Confusing Allusions.
The Secret is Partner with none But the Knower of the Secret:
In the Skeptic's Ear The Secret is no Secret at all.
Matsnawi
I am dead, then alive. Weeping, then laughing. The power of love came into me, And I became fierce like a lion, Then tender like the evening star.

Hassan Askari, A Hero amongst Us

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بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ
The following occurred on December 2007.  It is an old story, but a good lesson, and lessons in values are timeless.  Riding the Q train into Brooklyn one Friday night, Hassan Askari noticed ten thugs hassling a young couple for replying ‘Happy Chanukah’ when greeted with ‘Merry Christmas’.  Fearing for the woman’s safety, he pushed one thug away, and the gang pounced on the 5’ 7”, 140 lb. hero.  This gave the two victims time to pull the subway’s emergency brake and summon help.  Hassan received two black eyes and a sore nose for his efforts, but never went to a doctor because he worked two jobs and could not afford medical care.  The victim, Walter Adler, who received a broken nose and required four stitches for a split lip, was shocked that “a random Muslim kid helped some Jewish kids, that’s what’s positive about New York.”



Sufficient is Allah (s.w.t.) for Me

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بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ
Imam al-Ghazali (r.a.) wrote in The Revival of the Religious Sciences: Invocations & Supplications: “Allah is enough for me in my religion.  Allah is enough for me in my mundane life.  Allah, the Generous, is enough for me in what distresses me.  Allah, the Affectionate, is enough for me against him who oppresses me.  Allah, the Stern, is enough for me against him who hurts me by evil.  Allah, the Compassionate, is enough for me at death.  Allah, the Merciful, is enough for me at the Inquisition in the Grave.  Allah, the Generous, is enough for me at the Reckoning.  Allah, the Beneficent, is enough for me at the Scales.  Allah, the Powerful, is enough for me at the crossing of the Traverse.”



But if they turn away, Say: "Allah sufficeth me: There is not Allah but He; On Him is my trust - He the Lord of the Throne (of Glory) Supreme! (Surah at-Tawbah:129)

The Prophet (s.a.w.) & the Emperor of China

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بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ
Here is a remarkable poem written by the first Ming Emperor of China, Zhu Yuanzhang, born 1328, celebrating the life and mission of the Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.).  “Ming” means “light”; it was called the dynasty of Light, Nur.  For political reasons, he did not announce that he was a Muslim, and not many people know that China had a Muslim dynasty, if only for a generation.  However, most of his generals were Muslim.  His bodyguards were Muslim.  And Zheng He, the noted Muslim admiral’s voyage, was in the time of his dynasty but after his lifetime.


“Since Creation of universe Heaven has already Appointed, Faith preaching giant saint, From West He was born, To receive Holy Scripture, With thirty-part book, To guide all creations, King of all kings, Leader of holy ones, With Support from Divine, To Protect his nation, With five daily prayers, Silently hope for peace, With heart toward Allah, Empower the poor ones, Save them from calamity, See through the unseen, Pulli…

Swalah to Avert Bala' for Swafar

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بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ
The following is from a note by Ustadz Fakhruddin Owaisi at-Tijani.  Many great awliya’ have mentioned that an immense number of bala’, calamities, descend on humanity on the last Wednesday of this month of Swafar.  Khatim al-Awliya’ Mawlana Ahmad ibn Muhammad at-Tijani al-Hasani al-Maghribi (q.s.) has confirmed this.
There is also a special swalah that Mawlana Ahmad at-Tijani (q.s.) would perform on this Wednesday to ward off these calamities as mentioned by Sidi Sukayrij (q.s.) in the Jinayat al-Muntaswib.  This swalah has been practiced by Mawlana Ahmad at-Tijani’s (q.s.) descendants and by the special ones in his thariqa’ for generations.
Shaykh Ibrahim Niyas (q.s.) gave permission to all his disciples to perform this prayer on the last Wednesday of Swafar as mentioned by Shaykh Abu Bakr ‘Atiq (q.s.) in Miftah al-Akhlaq.  Shaykh Hasan Sisi (q.s.) has also advised his muridun to perform this swalah.  Even non-Tijani saints have performed this swal…

Sorrows are a Divine Grace

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بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

Mawlana Jalal ad-Din ar-Rumi (q.s.) said, “Sorrows are a Divine Grace.  As long as people feel good, they forget about the Creator.  But in times of sorrow and pain, they think of Him.  When the sorrow comes, the Veil of Forgetfulness is torn apart and the sufferer accepts Allah and wails, ‘O Allah, O You Who are Merciful!’  He is being Cured, but soon the Veil of Forgetfulness falls down again, and he says, ‘Where is God?  I cannot find Him.  I do not see Him.  What shall I look for?’”
Why were we able to find Him when we suffered but cannot find Him now?  So now, we see that as we suffer, Allah (s.w.t.) Makes us think of Him, Sending us sorrow and pain.  To consume worries means to empty oneself.  After such an emptying joy appears, a kind of joy that knows no sorrow - a rose without thorns, a wine that does not bring headaches.  It is the sorrow that guides us.  As long as there is no sorrow, no passion, or no yearning, love in a work; we will no…

The Love of Allah (s.w.t.)

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بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ
Once at the time of hajj, there was a gathering in Makkah of some friends of Allah (s.w.t.), the youngest among whom was Shaykh Junayd al-Baghdadi (q.s.).  In that gathering, there was a discussion on the subject of the love for Allah (s.w.t.) and as to who is the lover of Allah (s.w.t.).  Many of them expressed their views on the subject, but Shaykh Junayd (q.s.) kept quiet.  He was pressed to say something.
With his head bowed down and tears in his eyes, he said, “The lover of Allah (s.w.t.) is he who forgets his own self, remains engaged in Allah's (s.w.t.) remembrance with due regard to all its requirements; sees Allah (s.w.t.) with the eye of his heart, which is Burnt by the Heat of Allah's (s.w.t.) fear; Allah's (s.w.t.) remembrance affects him like a cup of wine, he speaks the Words of Allah (s.w.t.) as if Allah (s.w.t.) Speaks through his mouth; if he moves, he does so under the Command of Allah (s.w.t.), he gets peace of mind on…

'Umar ibn 'Abd al-'Aziz (r.a.) on Sin

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بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

Sayyidina ‘Umar ibn ‘Abd al-‘Aziz (r.a.) wrote a letter to a military commander and said, “Sin is even more dangerous than the ruses of the enemy.  ‘Amir al-Mu'minin bids upon Manswur that instead of taking fright of his enemy, he should fear transgressing the limits of Allah Ta’ala.  We overcome our enemies in the battlefield only because of their vices and sins, for, had it not been so, we would not have had the courage to face them.  We can not deploy troops in the same numbers as our enemies can do, nor do we possess the equipment they have got.  Thus, if we equate ourselves with our enemies in misdeeds and transgressions, they would undoubtedly gain a victory over us by virtue of their numerical superiority and strength.”
The ummah will always be in a state of subjugation not because the enemies of Islam have subdued them but because they have been subdued by their lower selves.  The Muslim nations have rushed to emulate the enemies of Isla…

This Time

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بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ
This is a time, when brothers, O Man, are not brothers. When brothers all are unjust - They have two tongues and two faces. He meets you with a smiling face, but in his heart, There is a disease which he secretly hides, Until you are out if his sight – Then he throws after you falsehood and lies. Such are the people of this time - There are not two are true in love. O Man, live then your life alone. Do not seek the company of other men. Live side by side with people, but keep Yourself safe within house and walls.
‘Ali ibn Abi Thalib (k.w.)

The Story of David & Michael

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بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ
Two guys were lost in the Sahara Desert.  One was David, the other was Michael.  They were suffering from hunger and thirst when they suddenly came upon an oasis, with what looked like a mosque in the middle.
David said to Michael, “Look, let's pretend we are Muslims, otherwise we’ll not get any food or drink.  I am going to call myself ‘Mohammed.’”
Michael refused to change his name.  He said, “My name is Michael, and I will not pretend to be other than but what I am - Michael.”
The imam of the mosque received both well and asked about their names.  David said, “My name is Mohammed.”
Michael said, “My name is Michael.”
The imam turned to the helpers of the mosque and said, “Please bring some food and water for Michael only.”  Then he turned to the other and said, “as-Saalamu’ Alaykum Mohammed.  Ramadhan Mubarak.”

The Ship Sunk in Love

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بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ
The following is extracted from the Rumi Collection, edited by Shaykh Kabir Helminski.
Should Love's heart rejoice unless I burn? For my heart is Love's dwelling. If You Will Burn Your House, Burn it, Love! Who will say, 'It's not allowed'? Burn this house thoroughly! The lover's house improves with fire. From now on I will make Burning my aim, From now on I will make Burning my aim, For I am like the candle: burning only makes me brighter. Abandon sleep tonight; traverse for one night The region of the sleepless. Look upon these lovers who have become distraught And like moths have died in Union with the One Beloved. Look upon this ship of God's Creatures And see how it is sunk in Love.
Mawlana Jalal ad-Din ar-Rumi (q.s.). Matsnawi

The Ones Who Serve are Served

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بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

The following is taken from “When You Hear Hoof Beats Think of a Zebra” by Shaykh Shems Friedlander.
One day in the courtyard of the mosque, Shaykh Tayfur Abu Yazid al-Bistami (q.s.), a great Sufi shaykh and the Quthb al-‘Arifin, the central pillar of knowledge, was making his ablutions in preparation for prayer.  Across the courtyard, he saw a very old man.  In the old days, they used heavy clay pitchers for water, and if you were strong enough, you picked one up and washed yourself.  Often, the person next to you would help you pour the water, and in turn you did the same for him.
Shaykh Abu Yazid al-Bistami (q.s.) saw no one was helping the old man.  He walked over to the old man and said, “Old man, what could you have done in your long life that you do not have one friend?  No one has come to help you?”
The old man looked at him and said, “The ones who serve are served.  And if I had not served Allah and His Creation, how would the Quthb al-‘Arifi…

The King & the Pauper

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بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

There was a king who decided to take a tour of his country.  As he passed by different places, everyone rushed to see him.  However, while passing by a certain place, he noticed a poor old man who did not pay any attention to the king's arrival and remained engaged in his own activities.
The king went up to this poor man and asked why he did not join the people to see him.  The poor man replied, "Before you, there was another king who once passed by this place.  Everyone gathered to see him as well.  But, few days later he died and was buried in a place nearby.  A poor man also died during that time and was buried near the king's grave.  After some time, a strong flood passed through that area causing those graves to overturn.  As a result, the bones of the poor man became mixed up with those of the king's.  We could not differentiate between them any longer.  After seeing this, it does not matter to me anymore as to who is a king a…

The Annihilation of 'Ali (k.w.)

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بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

The following is from the Commentary of al-Hikam of Shaykh ibn 'Atha’illah as-Sakandari (q.s.) by Shaykh ibn 'Ajibah (q.s.).  Speaking of the station of extinction, 'Ali ibn Abi Thalib (k.w.) said in verse:
I saw my Lord with the eye of my heart. I said: No doubt it is You!  It is You! You are the One Who Encompassed every "where". So there is no "where," except You are there. "Where" has no "where," in regards to You. For "where" to know where You are Nor can imagination, imagine You. For imagination to know where You are Your Knowledge Encompasses everything So that everything I see is You. And in my annihilation, is the Annihilation of my annihilation. and in my annihilation, I found You.

Decorating Our Personality

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بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

The following is a transcript of discourse delivered by Mawlana Waffie Mohammed,
It is the custom of a lot of people that when they are decorating a home they usually put up a lot of bright bulbs.  If the bulbs of those lights are not bright and shining, it will not serve its purpose.  Every human being is like a bulb.  And the mission of life is to keep that bulb bright and shining, so that it will be part of the decoration of the Garden on the Day of Resurrection.  In that Garden the perquisite of being there is to have a bright and shining personality.  In this connection, Allah (s.w.t.) Tells us in the Qur’an:



O ye who believe!  Turn to Allah with sincere repentance: in the hope that your Lord will Remove from you your ills and Admit you to Gardens beneath which rivers flow ― the Day that Allah will not permit to be humiliated the Prophet and those who believe with him.  Their Light will run forward before them and by their right hands, while the…

The Adab amongst Shuyukh

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بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

The following is adapted from Shaykh Shems Friedlander’s ‘When You Hear Hoof Beats, Think of a Zebra.
There is a special adab, proper spiritual behaviour, between shuyukh of dervish orders.  A man wanted to be a dervish.  He went to see Sulthan Walad (q.s.), the son of Jalal ad-Din ar-Rumi (q.s.), in Konya, who was then the head of the Mawlawi Order.  Sulthan Walad (q.s.) said, "al-Hamdulillah, all praise is for Allah.  Come, bring a sheep, and we will make a feast."  The man left, and the next Thursday he was supposed to bring a sheep.  He was a thief.  That was his job, so he stole a sheep.  He threw the sheep over his shoulders and walked up to the door of the tekke.  Sulthan Walad (q.s.) stopped him and said, "Wait!  That sheep cannot be cooked in our pots.  You cannot be a dervish with our Order."
The man was upset.  He wandered the streets of Konya, until he met a friend, who, seeing his state, asked, "What is the matte…