Loving the Saints of God

The Saints of God and who they are:

‘Ali bin ‘Uthman al-Hajweri [d. 465 AH] said:

Shaykh Abu Yazid Bistami said, “A saint is he who accepts courageously what is commanded (by God) and rejects what is prohibited (by God).” This is because the more a man loves God, the greater is His respect for His commands.

God Almighty has, therefore, upheld the validity of prophethood for good and has done so through the continuity of the class of his chosen people: the saints of God. They are God’s vicegerents on Earth and are fully devoted to Him without the slightest interference of the lower beastly self. It is through the spiritual blessings of the saints that God sends rain from the skies, grows vegetation form the earth and grants success to the Muslims over the disbelievers.

The saints of God are four thousand in number, but they are hidden from the gaze of the common people; and even they themselves don’t know one another. In fact, they are not aware of their own spiritual capabilities and virtues. In short, they remain hidden not only from mankind but from themselves as well. Their existence stands confirmed not only by the Quran and Hadith, but actual experience of the saints of God as well, including myself, by the grace of God.

Those who are entrusted the duty of administration are three hundred in number and are known as Akhyār or Nujabā. There are forty more who are called Abdāl; seven more known as Abrār; four more known as Awtād; three more known as Nuqabā; and one more who is called Qutb or Ghawth, (who is the most righteous man on earth at any given time). All these persons know one another and depend on one another in the performance of their duties. Their existence has been confirmed by the Holy Quran and Hadith, and by a vast majority of the Ummah, called Ahlus Sunnah wa’l-Jamā’ah (People of the Prophetic way and the majority of scholars). [Kashf al-Mahjūb]

Murabit al-Hajj [who resides in Tuwamarat, Mauritania] said:

While some of these terms (i.e. Nujabā, AbdālQutb etc.) are mentioned in the Quran and Hadith, others are not; but their existence has been confirmed by too many of the scholars and saints to deny them.

Loving the Saints of God:

Shaykh Abu Talib al-Makki [d. 386 AH] said:

If you are not from the righteous, see to it that you have love for them, for Allah Most High will look to their hearts, and perhaps He may look at your name and forgive you.

Khwaja Gharib Nawaz Mu’inuddin Chishti [d. 627 AH] narrated:

There was a man who hated the saints. When he died, and was placed in the grave, the people tried to turn his face towards Mecca, but it would always turn away from that direction. The people were astonished at this action. There was a voice from nowhere announcing, “It would be a futile exercise to try to turn his face towards Mecca, because he used to turn his face away at seeing the saints, and that he who would turn his face in disgust from My friends, I will turn My face from him. He is a condemned soul, and on the day of judgement, such people will appear with faces of donkeys.”

Fariduddin Mas’ud Ganj Shakar [d. 661 AH] narrated:

A sinful young man died in Multan. He then appeared to someone in a dream and was asked by him what his condition was. He replied that Allah had pardoned him. He explained that one day, when Khawaja Baha ul-Haq Zakariyya Multani was walking, he had kissed his hand with utmost respect. Due to this act, he had been pardoned.

Shaykh Ahmad Zarruq [d. 899 AH] said,

Know that the spirit of Islam is loving Allah, loving His Messenger—Salallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, loving the Hereafter, and loving the righteous among Allah’s servants. [Badl al-Nasīha]

Shaykh Ibn al-Zakari, in his commentary on the above said:

It is related from my master, Abdul Rahman al-Thalabi, with his chain of transmission up to Imam al-Tabari who said, ‘A stranger passed away when we were in Mecca. We took his body to Bāb al-Mala and sat down to prepare for his burial when suddenly he rose up and sat upright. We asked ourselves, “Did he not die?” The stranger said, “I did, but I returned in order to bring you glad tidings and inform you that the most beneficial thing we have is love for the righteous and closeness with them.” Right after he said that, he became a corpse again.’

Shaykh Abdur Rahman ould Murabit al-Hajj [who resides in Granada, Spain] said:

Even if you never get to meet a saint of God, but simply love them and would love to meet them, the saints of God know without you having to tell them. The scholars of our religion say, “A person being blessed with just visiting the lands they reside in, without meeting them, is a great honour in itself.”

May Allah grant us love for the saints of God, allow us to meet them in this life and unite us with them in the next life. Ameen!

The Saint who asked for Hell

Ja’far Khuldi has said:

“Once Shaykh Abul Hasan Nuri was making the following supplication and I overheard him.

‘O My Lord! If you have to fill Your hell with human beings whom You have created by Your knowledge, power and love, then make me large enough to fill the entire hell so that everybody else goes to Paradise.’

I was amazed to hear this and dreamt the same night that I should go and tell Abul Hassan Nuri that Allah Almighty had forgiven him for the kindness and love he had for mankind.”

In short, self-sacrifice is the keynote of Nuri’s doctrine, which is regarded as the noblest state and the highest success in the eyes of the people of spiritual insight (Ahl al-Basirah). This is because nothing is more difficult in the world than sacrificing one’s life and surrendering the objects of one’s desire. Allah Almighty has said:

“None of you [believers] will attain true piety unless you give out of what you cherish: whatever you give, Good knows about it very well.” [Surah Aali-‘Imran 3:92]

How can giving away of wealth, health, food and garments bear comparison with sacrificing one’s life?


Taken from: Al-Hajweri, Kashful Mahjūb.
Featured Image: @Masrawi

The cure for intrusive thoughts

Principle 86, from Sidi Ahmad Zarruq’s, Qawa`id at-Tasawwuf:

Perfection of worship is achieved by observing the acts of worship and being mindful of them. This is achieved by following their inner and outer rules without negligence or exaggeration. Negligence leads to perdition while exaggeration leads to innovation, especially if excessive deeds are thought to lead to proximity to God.

Thus it has been said,

– “Subhāna’l-Maliki’l-Khallāq” (Glory be to the King, the Creator), and
– “In-yasha’ Yudh-hibkum wa Yāti bi-Khalqin Jadīd” (If He wills, He can do away with you and bring in a  new creation).

The person affected by intrusive thoughts (wasawis) recites that formula, constantly, whenever he is reading his daily litany (wird). He complements that by frequently practicing forms of recreation (deflecting his mind away from those intrusive thoughts) and by acting in accordance with concessionary rulings (rukhas) of the Shariah, which have been advocated by people of knowledge in order to banish such intrusive thoughts. That is different from scrambling around for concessionary rulings in the various juristic schools across the board of human situations, for that is mere perdition and straying into error. So understand!

Will I be punished even if I believe in the Divine?

hopeThe answer can be found in the following verse of the Qur’an, Surah an-Nisā 4:147, in which Allah says:

{ مَّا يَفْعَلُ ٱللَّهُ بِعَذَابِكُمْ إِن شَكَرْتُمْ وَآمَنْتُمْ وَكَانَ ٱللَّهُ شَاكِراً عَلِيماً }

Why would God punish you if you are thankful and believe? God is ever Thankful, Knowing.

Imam al-Qushayrī [d.376 AH] comments:

This verse is among the verses which engenders beautiful hopefulness and powerful optimism because He has made two things: “Thankfulness” (Shukr) and “Belief” (Īmān), among the signs of protection (amān) in what is to come; and these are easy and light qualities…

It is said that if you are thankful and believe, you confirm the truth that your salvation is through God, not because of your thankfulness or your belief.

It is said, Allah is thankful to his servant because He knows his weakness, and it is said He is thankful to him because He knows that his servant is not disobedient and that his aim is not to oppose His Lord. Rather, he sins because of the overwhelming cravings that are among the states of being human.

It is said [the servant] is thankful to Him because he knows in the state of his sins that he has a Lord who pardons him.

[Latā’if al-Ishārāt [Subtleties of the Allusions] by Imām Abu’l-Qāsim al-Qushayrī].

If you look for the words “most people” in the Qur’an, you will find that most of mankind:

 “do not know” [7:187],
“do not give thanks” [2:243]
“do not believe” [11:17].
“defiantly disobedient” [5:59],
“ignorant” [6:111],
“turning away” [21:24],
“do not reason” [29:23], and
“do not listen” [8:21].

So be of the “few”, whom Allah says about them:

“And few of My servants are grateful.” (34:13)
“But none had believed with him, except a few.” (11:40)

May Allah forgive us all and make us amongst those who believe and are thankful.

“Who is God? What is God?” – The response of Imam `Ali bin Abi Talib

Muhammad ibn Ishaq narrated that Nu`man bin Sa`d said:

“In my presence, Nawf bin `Abdullah came to `Ali and said, “O Leader of the Believers! There is an assembly of about fourty Jews standing outside, and they are here to ask you a few questions.”

`Ali invited them in and asked them to put forth their questions. They asked `Ali different questions regarding the reality and howness (Kayfiyyah) of God (Allah). Imam `Ali bin Abi Talib, the great jurist, said the following in response to their questions:

O Assembly of Jews , listen to me. Do not be concerned about asking anyone but me in this affair.

My Lord – Mighty and Majestic – He is the First, without beginning

He is neither intermingled with His Creation

Nor is He in a state in between that

He is not a ghost or spirit that is remote

He is not remote where He does not know His Creation

He did not appear at some point where it could be said He is created

No, Majestic is He that He be decribed in this way when He has given all things their shape

He has always been and does not change through time

He was – when there was no thing – without time or place

And He is now as He ever was!

He is not distracted by different affairs

How can He be decribed as are ghosts and how can He be truly praised by people?

How can this be when He is not within things so as to be called separate?

He is without likeness and how yet He is closer to you than your jugular vein!

He is as far as can be from any likeness with the creation

The slightest thing from His Creation is not hidden from Him

Whether it is the slightest statement off the tongue, the hidden action or the single footstep

In the great shadows of the night, the shining of the moon, the brightness of the sun, nothing is hidden from Him when He is the source of light for all things.

He surrounds all in His Creation, whether it is the sudden onset of night or the sudden brightness of the day without His being encompassed by the creation.

He knows about every place and all of what is and will be

And also the end of all things that are to come

Time and ending is something that has been given to the creation.

Limits are only attributed to created things and not Him.

He did not create the things from the foundations of eternity where they always existed

Nor did He create from existing things already present.

No! Rather He created what He made and established its’ creation from nothing.

He gave shape and good form to everything.

He is One and Unique in His Oneness

There is nothing the creation can do that can harm Him and there is no way the creation can benefit Him

He is quick to answer the supplications of those that call upon Him

Yes, indeed the angels in the skies and earths obey Him.

His knowledge of all that has died or ceased is just as full as His knowledge of all things living and what is in the highest skies.

The same holds true for His knowledge in every thing and all the voices and languages do not confuse or baffle Him.

He hears all the different  voices and languages without limbs or organs

Indeed He is the Designer and the All Seeing, The Knower of all affairs, All Living, Self Sufficient

Glorified be He, He spoke to Musa directly without the need of limbs and instruments, lips or throat.

Glorified and Exalted is He from having a similarity like the creations.

Whoever claims that Our God has boundaries, then He does not know the Creator that is worshipped

The same is said of the one who says that the places encompass Him

This claim means that He is mingled with and contained by the creation!

No, He surrounds and encompasses every place.

The one that claims He is surrounded by His Creation when he describes the Most Merciful while He has no revelation or text to prove this, I have this question for him:

Describe for me (angel) Jibril, Mika’il, Israfil! Go ahead! I defy you to do so!

Are you then unable to describe what is a creation like you?

Are you unable to describe just a creation when you describe the Creator with form and organs, this same One who is neither overtaken by sleep nor slumber!

This is the same One who owns all that is in the skies and the earths, what is between them! He is the Lord of the Glorious Throne!

{This narration of Nu`man bin Sa`d is Ghareeb and Muhammad ibn Ishaq (who is Saduq) has narrated it Mursalan in Hilyat ul-Awliya wa Tabaqat ul-Asfiyah Volume 1, Page 72-73 of Imam Abu Nu`aym Ahmad Asfahani}