The Stress on Ascetism

بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

Imam Abu al-Qasim ‘Abd al-Karim ibn Huzan al-Qushayri (r.a.) wrote, in his Risalah al-Qushayriyyah fi ‘Ilm at-Taswawwuf, about Shaykh Abu Muhammad ‘Abdallah ibn Khubayq al-Anthaki (q.s.). 

Shaykh ibn Khubayq al-Anthaki (q.s.) was one of those Sufis who stressed asceticism.  He was a companion of Shaykh Yusuf ibn Asbat (q.s.), who hailed from Kufa, although he lived in Antioch. 

Imam al-Qushayri (r.a.) reported, in a chain from Shaykh Muhammad ibn al-Husayn (r.a.), from Shaykh Abu al-Faraj ‘Abd al-Wahid ibn Bakr al-Warathani (r.a.), from Shaykh Abu al-Azhar al-Mayyafariqini (r.a.), that Shaykh al-Fath ibn Shakhraf (r.a.) said, “When I met ‘Abdullah ibn Khubayq for the first time, he told me, ‘Man of Khurasan, there are only four things, no more and no less: your eye, your tongue, your heart, and your desire.  Watch your eye so that it would not see that which is not permitted; watch your tongue so that you would not say with it the things that God Knows you do not mean in your heart; watch your heart so that it would contain neither malice nor envy toward any Muslim; and watch your desire so that you would not wish any evil.  If you do not have these qualities, then cover your head with ashes, for you will be among the evildoers.’” 

Shaykh ibn Khubayq al-Anthaki (q.s.) said, “Worry only about things that may harm you tomorrow.  And be happy only about things that may make you happy tomorrow!” 

Shaykh ibn Khubayq al-Anthaki (q.s.) also said, “When servants alienate themselves from God, He will Alienate from them the hearts.  And when they open their hearts to God, He will Make everyone open his heart to them.” 

He said, “The best kind of fear is one that shields you from sins, that which fills you with sorrow over deeds that you missed, and that which makes you think about the rest of your life.  The best kind of hope is one that renders good works easy for you.” 

He also said, “Listening to falsehood for a long time dulls the sweetness of obedience to God in your heart.”


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