The Need for a Guide

بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

The following is adapted from a swuhbah by Shaykh Muhammad Nazhim Adil al-Haqqani (q.s.).

If someone builds the foundation of his house on a cliff without building a good foundation, then it will fall down.  But if someone builds the foundation of his house on solid plot or on a solid ground, piece by piece, well placed, then he is going to find that his house stands firm.  But everything requires an expert.  Shaykh Nazhim (q.s.) said if we were simply to ask any person if they could build a house for us, he would most likely say, “No, I am not qualified.’  We are obliged to call another one who is.  The architect would have a plan and a methodology.

If we need an expert to build an ordinary house, what more our heart?  How do we approach our Lord without the guidance of an expert?  We must look for an expert.  We cannot reach Him without one, no matter how much we try to move on this path alone.  No one can reach Him by himself because sometimes, even though he knows he is on the right path, he might do something out of place or time.  Then he will fail.  So we need an expert and that expert is our guide.

Guidance is important.  If we do not have a guide to lead us to our destination, then we will encounter many difficulties along our way.  When we go into a desert, they tell us how inhospitable it is.  They may show us the way in the beginning.  Nevertheless, we still need a guide to show you the rest of the way through the desert.  To the visitor, everything in the desert looks the same.  When the winds come, the sand moves.  One could easily lose direction.  An expert, a guide can take us along the right way even if the winds come and reach the other side.  That desert is dunya.

To reach our Lord, we can never find your way through the desert of this life except with a guide, because the wind of the ego changes everything.  The ego has desires.  The wind of the ego is empty desires and vain passions.  When desires come to our ego, they veil the right path from us.  Then we are lost.  That is why we need a guide who is an expert in the ways of the desert.  He is an expert in the roads that traverse the ego.


  1. isn't our guide our Prophet saws?

    1. The Prophet (s.a.w.) is the ultimate guide. But unless a Muslim has access to him the way the companions did, there is still a need for a teacher. Islam cannot be learned from books in the same way a person who memorised a book on piloting a plane cannot fly until he is taught.


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