(Suhbah in progress.) ...understanding, and that is where the problem is. When Awliyaullah and `ulama al-Ummah say something, they understand it fully, depending on the levels of their understanding. Both`Ilm azh-Zhaahir wa `Ilm al-Baatin, Knowledge of the Apparent and Knowledge of the Hidden are needed, you cannot leave one, but must take them both into consideration.
Alhamdulillah that Allah (swt) created us Muslim. He made us from the Muslim community:
إِنَّ الدِّينَ عِندَ اللّهِ الإِسْلاَمُُ
The religion in Allah’s view is Islam (submission to His Will). (Surat Aali-`Imraan, 3:19)
أَطِيعُواْ اللّهَ وَأَطِيعُواْ الرَّسُولَ وَأُوْلِي الأَمْرِ مِنكُمْ
Obey Allah, obey the Prophet, and obey those in authority among you. (Surat an-Nisa, 4:59)
Sayyidina `Abdul-Khaliq al-Ghujdawani, may Allah bless his soul, trained his mureeds in different ways. One of his mureeds was very intelligent and reached a high level of understanding of `Ilm azh-Zhaahir and `Ilm al-Baatin, but he still had something within him, something all of us have: he felt as if he knew everything and wanted to express it.
The shaykh looked at his heart and saw that the mureed was very good and that according to the `ahd, promise, Allah (swt) gave him on the Day of Promises, he was going to be Murshid li ’l-Ummah, a guide for Ummat an-Nabi (s). That needed to be cleared up because you cannot be a guide when you are falling into the well of difficulties, burdens and wrong understanding. So the shaykh wanted to clean him up in order to give him his Trust, because he could see at the end of the road that person would receive his Trust during his lifetime after his heart was polished. Today there are too many `ulama that think they have reached the highest level of knowledge and that they are the best worshippers, so they are proud of what they are, but they have misunderstood. When Allah (swt) ordered Iblees to make sajda to Adam (a), to show him, “There is someone above you,” none of his `ilm benefitted him. He was one of the biggest `alims, head of angels, he knew everything, but his `ilm didn’t help him because he was arrogant and proud of himself. To be proud is as if someone is pulling you deep in the earth to bury you. Pride is a dangerous character! It is one of the worst characters, because those who are proud of themselves and their `ilm are carrying the pride of Iblees, for that Allah (swt) cursed him at the end.
So Sayyidina `Abdul-Khaliq al-Ghujdawani (q) saw his mureed will have a great position in the future, so he called him. After the mureed came to his shaykh and sat--it was in Merv, about 20 miles or 50 kilometers from today’s Bukhara in Uzbekistan--he said to him, “I looked into our Tariqah at all the mureeds and I find you to be one that cannot achieve anything, you are helpless and weak.”
The mureed was looking at himself, saying, “How am I helpless and weak when I am one of the best?” But in his heart he was not showing it. Sayyidina `Abdul-Khaliq (q) was able to concentrate and focus on his heart and see what he was saying to himself, “I am the best among all the mureeds!” Everyone used to get advice from him, but he was proud of himself.
Sayyidina `Abdul-Khaliq (q) wanted to cure him from that sickness and said, “Yaa waladee, I see when you sit in the majlis, our association, you disturb everyone else, making people unhappy with you and with us. So I decided you should to go to the forest and cut wood, as winter is coming. In the evening, bring it for the people in the masjid and the school so they get warm.”
The mureed was reluctant. When Allah ordered Iblees and the angels to make sajda, all the angels obeyed, but Iblees was reluctant. That reluctance is the dangerous moment! The root of pride causes reluctance to fulfill the shaykh’s order, because he knows your heart is full of spiritual diseases and wants to clean you, but from the pride in your heart you do not accept.
Sayyidina `Abdul-Khaliq al-Ghujdawani (q) was able to see that and said to him, “By the way, when you go to the forest don’t take the usual way that we go through the village. First go to the big city and from there go to the forest. That authorization I gave you now, begin to do it, move from here now and go find your destiny. You will find what you need of `ilm, knowledge.”
So his pride played with him and he answered back, although he was not supposed to answer, “Yaa Sayyidee, I will follow your order, but can I use the village road because the city road is full of scholars, everyone knows me and I will be humiliated.”
He said, “We know that you will be humiliated, but you have to go through that in order to check your heart, because it is rejecting my order. I am feeling that.”
The mureed said, “Yaa Sayyidee, forgive me. I will take the road that goes to the city and from there to the forest.”
On the way, children, men, people taunted him, “Look at the big scholar of Islam, what happened to him? He has gone crazy, he doesn’t think anymore.” He didn’t listen to them, but continued on his way to the forest. On the first day he cut the wood, the second and third day he cut the wood, until he got fed up, went back to the shaykh and said, “Yaa Sayyidee, I was not able to continue. Give me an easier job.”
The shaykh said, “Okay, this is our flock. Take the flock to the forest or field every day, let them eat and then bring them in the evening.”
It was another assignment and another failure! He took the sheep outside and all the poor people sat around him. He slaughtered one or two sheep and three lambs to feed the people fee sabilillah and in a short while all the sheep were finished.
He came to the shaykh and said, “Yaa Sayyidee, I am a failure, I ate all the sheep.”
“How did you eat them all?”
“When people sat with me and listened, I offered it to them.”
The shaykh said, “Yaa waladee, you are the worst and most useless one I have met in my life!”
He gave him a hard time. Today if you are hard on anyone, they will run away. Alhamdulillah, our mashaayikh were not hard on us, but they were hard. Mashaa-Allah, Grandshaykh (q) used to pamper all of us for us to feel happy, because it is not easy to be an `alim and scholar and then they suddenly drop you down, what would happen? Too many things would happen!
He said, “Look, I will cut short the assignments I was going to give you and give you a shortcut to reach your destination. Go to the cemetery of the city and visit the graves.”
“Why visit the graves, to do what with dead people?” the mureed thought to himself.
He said, “Go there and you will see something you need to know, so don’t question me, go!”
He said, “Okay.”
He went to the cemetery and wanted to enter, but the door was closed. He knocked, but no one was opening. He knocked again, no one opened. `Asr time came, he prayed `Asr, Maghrib time came and he prayed Maghrib then `Isha time came and he prayed `Isha. The shaykh said to sit in the cemetery and take `ilm from there, but no one came, so he decided to stay one more day. At Fajr prayer, a man came and saw the mureed trying to open the door but it wasn’t opening.
He said, “What is your problem, my brother?”
The mureed said, “Yaa Sayyidee, I am trying to go inside to visit the deceased people, but the door is not opening,” and he showed him the lock, “Look, it is locked!”
The man said, “It is locked, so say ‘Bismillahi 'r-Rahmani 'r-Raheem.’”
He said, “Bismillahi 'r-Rahmani 'r-Raheem,” and the door opened. The lock fell down, he entered and one of the first graves he passed near the door was a big tombstone. He stood there looking at the grave, thinking, “That was a big scholar, how will I get `ilm from him? He is dead! If I speak to him, he will not answer me.” He began to doubt.
يَـٰٓأَيُّہَا ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ ٱجۡتَنِبُواْ كَثِيرً۬ا مِّنَ ٱلظَّنِّ إِنَّ بَعۡضَ ٱلظَّنِّ إِثۡمٌ۬ۖ وَلَا تَجَسَّسُواْ وَلَا يَغۡتَب بَّعۡضُكُم بَعۡضًاۚ أَيُحِبُّ أَحَدُڪُمۡ أَن يَأۡڪُلَ لَحۡمَ أَخِيهِ مَيۡتً۬ا فَكَرِهۡتُمُوهُ
O you who believe! Avoid suspicion as much (as possible) for suspicion in some cases is a sin, and spy not on each other, nor speak ill of each other behind their backs. Would any of you like to eat the flesh of his dead brother? No, you would abhor it! (Surat al-Hujuraat, 49:12)
He began to have bad thoughts about his shaykh. So the man who had opened the door came to him and said, “SubhaanAllah, look at that scholar, now he is in the grave. He died when he was two years old.” The mureed was thinking, “What two years? He died when he was seventy-five, eighty years of age, what is he speaking about?”
He said, “Yaa Sayyidee, this one died when he was seventy-five years of age.”
The man said, “No, you don’t know anything. This one died when he was two years old. He was a breastfed child.”
The mureed moved to the second grave and it was the same thing, “This scholar died when he was one-and-a-half years old, another one at three years of age, a third one at the age of five.” He passed eleven of them in the cemetery; in the eyes of the Wali that had opened the door for him, none of the deceased had reached maturity. The mureed said to himself, “Shaytan has come to make me think bad of all these scholars and my shaykh.” He said, “Go away from here! I am going to my shaykh, I don’t want to see you, don’t follow me!”
The man said, “Okay, I was advising you.”
The mureed left and came to his shaykh, who said, “What happened, did you get any `ilm at the cemetery?”
He said, “W’Allahi yaa Sayyidee, I didn’t get anything! I went there, there were big scholars from among your mureeds. I passed and read du`a there visiting them and the majnoon I met told me they all died at a young age.”
Sayyidina `Abdul-Khaliq al-Ghujdawani (q) looked at the mureed who was looking down out of adab; they didn’t look directly at the shaykh, but keep their heads down in the association of dhikr. Today in the association someone is snoring, someone is speaking, someone is drinking, there is no concentration, no tafakkur, no reflection, no contemplation; this one is busy, you are busy, this one is thinking which qasidah he will sing.
As soon as the mureed told the shaykh, “I met someone,” that man was sitting beside Sayyidina `Abdul-Khaliq al-Ghujdawani (q); it was Sayyidina Khidr (a). He said, “Yaa Sayyidina `Abdul-Khaliq al-Ghujdawani, you sent the worst person, the worst mureed you have to the cemetery to receive knowledge from them (the deceased). He was spoiled, he didn’t know anything, he rejected them, he didn’t believe what I said to him.” So he gave him a very hard time and the mureed was going to explode, and Sayyidina Khidr (a) left.
The shaykh said, “That was Khidr (a) who came to teach you; we sent him to teach you about your knowledge. All these scholars gave respect to their scholarly life, but when they died, if you add all their good `amal it would not come to one-and- a-half years, two, three or five years, no one would even reach maturity,” which means their `amal was still naaqis, deficient.
He said, “We want to pray `Isha, let’s go to the masjid.”
At that moment, as Grandshaykh, may Allah bless his soul, said, the rawhaniyyat an-Nabi (s) appeared to Sayyidina `Abdul-Khaliq al-Ghujdawani (q). He (s) said, “It is enough of tests for this one, he is clean.” They had tried to crush him. When Awliyaullah want to give you your Trust they don’t give a candy, they punch you. You will be up and then come down. When your Trust is ready to be given, this is how they give it, not that you will get it on a silver plate. So it is very difficult, it is not easy.
So they prayed `Isha in jama`ah. That mureed was hiding behind a pillar for no one to see him; he wanted to be by himself and think about his problem that the shaykh had put him in, and finally he said, “Until everyone leaves, I will meditate and come up with something that will make my heart feel better.” When everyone left, they locked the masjid and he sat by himself, he didn’t know that Sayyidina `Abdul-Khaliq al-Ghujdawani (q) was behind him hiding as well. He said to himself, “I am the worst of Allah’s Creation, fa w’Allahi wa Rabbi ‘l-Ka`bah.” Grandshaykh (q) used to say it like that. “Fa w’Allahi wa Rabbi ‘l-Ka`bah, `alaa innanee aqallu insaanin `alaa wajhi hadhihi ‘d-dunya, I am the worst and of the lowest level of people in this Creation! I am the worst. To confirm this, my wife will be divorced from me if I am not the worst one.” If his heart would not certify what he had said with his mouth his wife would be divorced, but because he felt and believed he was the worst one, he meant what he said. It means he killed his nafs completely, through the jungle and cutting of the trees, killing the sheep, through going through the cemetery, it was a cleaning process, to make him accept he is the worst. When he accepted that, they gave him the Trust.
At that moment, Rawhaniyyat ar-Rasool (s) appeared to Sayyidina `Abdul-Khaliq al-Ghujdawani (q) and said, “Give him his Trust from within his heart,” because there is a Trust from within you and there is a Trust from outside coming to you from Awliyaullah, from Heavens.
Sayyidina `Abdul-Khaliq al-Ghujdawani (q) stood up and his mureed saw him, saying, “Yaa Sayyidee! Since when are you here?”
He said, “From the beginning. I have accompanied you from the forest all the way here. Now you have been certified by Awliyaullah, by Prophet (s) and by Allah (swt) that you may get your Trust.”
The shaykh and the mureed sat, joining their knees. The shaykh turned his Shahaadah finger through the mureed’s heart like a laser, the way you send light to any organ of the body to repair it. He used a heavenly laser, pouring the Six Realities in his heart: Haqiqat al-Jazba, Haqiqat al-Fayd, Haqiqat at-Tawajjuh, Haqiqat at-Tawassul, Haqiqat at-Tayy, Haqiqat al-Irshaad.
The shaykh told him, “Irshaad was the end, now you are ready to make da`wah. First was Haqiqat al-Jazbah, Reality of Attraction. All these levels were to prepare you for Haqiqat al-Irshaad.” As soon as the shaykh poured those Six Realities in the mureed’s heart he flew; the gravity of Earth didn’t pull him down, the gravity of Heavens pulled him up to the ceiling of the masjid, like flying up, then coming down, going up, coming down. Today people are whirling but are not rising up, because the gravity of their ego and bad desires weighs them down. When you lift yourself up and remove desires of the ego you will fly, and then you can perform miracles.
These first five levels in the end come to Haqiqat al-Irshaad, which means you have received your certificate: you can go anywhere, you can teach, give suhbahs and advice. This story teaches us that having pride in our heart is the most hated character and behavior we are falling into. Allah (swt), Prophet (s) and Awliyaullah don't like arrogance or proud people. We are struggling in that ocean of hate, all of us trying to get out, especially shuyookh. What is their speciality? It is as Prophet (s) said:
انما بعثت لاتمم مكارم الاخلاق
I have been sent to perfect the best of conduct (your behavior and character). (Bazzaar)
So you have to work on yourself to not be arrogant to go smoothly with the trend like the water flowing down waterfalls, going to the ocean. Come down from your hierarchy, don’t think you are the only one, no! You are one of six billion people living on Earth now. So come down, bring your ego down and then you will get the benefit of irshaad. Your Trust will not be served to you on a silver plate, they will put you in a difficult situation in order to polish you more and more, to prepare you for giving da`wah, lectures and advice, to be able to meet and sit with people and work on their egos and souls. May Allah (swt) clean and perfect us, and perfect our behavior for the sake of Sayyidina Muhammad (s) and for the sake of Awliyaullah. [Ameen.]
This is a suhbah only focusing on pride. Don’t say, “I was this, I was that.” Today a minister who served four or eight years in a cabinet might have stepped down, he came back to a normal level, but people still call him minister of this or that. When they give you a title, no one can take it from you. So when you have been given the title of Irshaad, wherever you go no one can take it from you, even if you don’t speak, as it is not necessary for you to say anything, it is (only) necessary to be in the audience and everyone attending will get the tajalli of Rahmatan li’l-`Alameen, the Prophet (s), as he is Mercy for Humanity and you will inherit from that in order to be at the service of humanity. It is so difficult for people today, that is why Awliyaullah take it on their shoulders.
May Allah forgive us, may Allah clean us with the perfumes of Heavens inshaa-Allah, perfumes of Riyaad al-Jannah, perfumes of Awliyaullah and perfumes of Sayyidina Muhammad (s)!
Bi hurmati 'l-habeeb, bi hurmati 'l-Fatihah.
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