Monday, October 26, 2009

Imam Rabbani (ks) on importance of Shaykhs


Shaykh Ahmad Sirhindi, radhiAllahu anh, in Mabda wa Ma'ad

"You may know that the obligation to the Shaykh is above the obligationto any one else, except for the Divine blessings and the Propheticfavors, (the obligation to Allah T’ala for His blessings and theobligation to His Messenger (salAllahu alaihi wasallam) for hisfavors). And in reality, the Messenger of Allah himself (salAllahualaihi wasallam) is everyone’s true Shaykh. (That is, one’s Shaykhis the representative and inheritor of the Prophet, salAllahu alaihiwasallam, in this life)

And though one’s physical birth is from one’s parents, the spiritualbirth is from the Shaykh. This physical life is only for a few days,but the spiritual life is ever-lasting."

City of Dignity


“O people, by Allâh I have visited kings. I went to Caesar, Chosroes and the Negus, but by Allâh I never saw a king whose companions venerated him as much as the companions of Muhammad venerated Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allâh be upon him). By Allâh, whenever he spat it never fell on the ground, it fell into into the hand of one his companions, then they wiped their faces and skins with it. If he instructed them to do something, they would hasten to do as he commanded. When he did wudû’, they would almost fight over his water. When he spoke they would lower their voices in his presence; and they did not stare at him out of respect for him.” ( al-Bukhârî, 3/178, no. 2731, 2732; al-Fath, 5/388).

Muhammad ibn `Umar said: “(Imam) Malik’s circle was a circle of dignity and courtesy. He was a man of majestic countenance and nobility. There was no part for self-display, vain talk, or loud speech in his circle. His reader would read for all, and no-one looked into his own book, nor asked questions, out of awe before Malik and out of respect for him.”

Is it possible to take the typical second, third, fourth generation Muslim and shoehorn them into the circles described above? What would be their experience?

More than likely it would be filled with boredom, confusion, and criticism all stemming from how very different this circle is than any other gathering they have participated in earlier in the day.

Sitting cross legged is already difficult enough for us, much less being surrounded by air which is infused with odd things such as ‘awe’, ‘nobility’, ‘dignity’, ‘respect’. We don’t know how to handle or envision such words in literature, and we certainly are unprepared to be faced with the practical reality of them.

Which movie prepares us for this environment? Which show? Which video game?


In this void, awkwardness fills us and most peoples chests are pressed with an instinctive reaction to remove ourselves from the heat of uncomfortably.

Surrounded by people that are genuinely devoted to another individual on the basis of their superior knowledge and religious practice is disturbing in a culture which raises us towards complete self-reliance and the total equality of all men in all aspects.

Add a dash of some form of group expression of faith that we are unfamiliar with, and the field is ripe for the ego to rebel.

There are just so many ‘outs’.

The convenient (yet arbitrary) distinction between religious life and the life dedicated to this world, especially when it is intertwined with the buzzword of ‘innovation’ gives us the most convenient of explanations to categorize our reaction.

*I don’t like it, because it feels weird.*

Self knowledge tempers this.

When one realizes the weakness of ones own faith, prayer, worship, it makes it more difficult to come to grandiose conclusions condemning people who dedicate themselves to the same.

Humility dictates to us that we aren’t good judges, much less good prosecutors of others.

It is only when one confronts their own bias, in which one finds the reflection of sworn self-esteem and pavlovian pride, that one get past this haze which limits spiritual awakening.
Introducing the arbitrary categorization of the innovation when applied to worldly life vs religion contains within it the supposition that life is separate from religion.

A conclusion which has far hitting impacts.

In this model, watching TV feels quite alright, at least if you try to avoid some ‘bad scenes’. And watching 25 pictures per second on a wall mounted LCD screen is for some reason, so much harder to complain about than having a picture of a holy man who reminds us of prophecy, faith, improvement.

Under this mentality we think: Rock groups haraam?

Let us have Islamic pop stars.

Let’s have Muslim comedians.

Muslim fiction writers.

Muslim movie studios.

Muslim news channels.

All the while, we don’t exclude ourselves to the ‘Muslim’ version of these institutions of mimicry.

So they do not help in creating a Islamic culture in the West, what they do is create a bridge of acceptance.

To watch a ‘Muslim pop star’, you still have to enter a concert hall. And to see a ‘Muslim film’ you still have to sit on a couch.

These issues reflect the implicit approval by the Muslim community of dramatic shifts away from the cultures which underwent a millenia of Islamization, and towards those which are challenging those cultures at every turn.

Islam was so much more than a filter of existing cultures, it brought something new. And these accomplishments are written in sand swept stone of Mughal architecture to the grand prayer halls of the Ottomans, to the poetry of Mevlana Rumi and the ironic statements on humanity from Nasruddin Hoja.

This system has put the final wall up between knowledge and practice. It’s done this by actually turning Islam away from traditional values and a culture in which people of dramatic faith and unique characteristics were raised and nurtured.

Modern institutions catering to Muslims have been continuing the century old transition from Muslim culture and values to Western ones, all under the name of preaching Islam. And its not always so obtuse as obvious as Azhari recent ban on niqaab. Pay-as-you-go ‘Islamic classes’ have cloaked an entirely foreign idea of Western style instruction in the mantle of religiosity.

And when examining this issue of cultural adoption, what we have chosen is not hamburgers over curry. We have settled for abandoning circles of dignity.

by Yursil Kidwai !!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Friend! Nobody veils you, but yourself.
In your path there is no thorn or weed,
but yourself.
You said:
Shall I reach the Beloved or not?
Between you and the Beloved there is nobody,
but yourself.
-Awhadoddin Kermani

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Life is an invitation;
it asks to be discovered by the one who lives it.
I say to myself,
"Go ahead and explore what you're curious about."
This is my life, a lived by me.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Your Hand in Mine...

Listen for the stream
that tells you one thing.
Die on this bank.
Begin in me
the way of rivers with the sea


I wonder
from these thousand of "me's",
which one am I?
Listen to my cry, do not drown my voice
I am completely filled with the thought of you.
Don't lay broken glass on my path
I will crush it into dust.
I am nothing, just a mirror in the palm of your hand,
reflecting your kindness, your sadness, your anger.
If you were a blade of grass or a tiny flower
I will pitch my tent in your shadow.
Only your presence revives my withered heart.
You are the candle that lights the whole world
and I am an empty vessel for your light.

--Rumi - Hidden Music

Wednesday, October 14, 2009


This being human is a guest-house.
Every morning a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they're a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of it's furniture,
still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.
Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Come closer so I can hear you breathe, the rhythm of your existence ever so sweet. Whirl in this melody, you are heavens treat, deep in my heart, you will hear my soul beat...

by Zakir
The source of belief, is love.
The source of proof, is doubt.
Oh Lord, let love be sufficient for me, and make me not of those who require proof.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

My Master taught me a lesson:

“Any moment you are negligent
in remembrance of God
is a moment spent in denial of God.”

- Sultan Bahu, from Death Before Dying

— The Sufi Poems of Sultan Bahu, by Jamal J. Elias
I have always known
that at last I would
take this road, but yesterday
I did not know that it would be today.

- Narihira (9th century Japan), translated by Kenneth Rexroth

Sunday, October 4, 2009

I'll be Gone

I'm drowning in this,
Falling apart in the mist,
I'd rather see you one more time then die,
I'd love to see you smile,

To see the sun walking upon the miles,
But time has chosen to take me,
To suck me up in darkness,
Away from you,

I don't want to go but I have to know this is true,
I won't be here tomorrow,
I won't be here for another day,
I'll be gone by the next day,

But please don’t forget me,
Keep me in your sorrow,
Keep in mind that our hearts aren’t borrowed.