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Dhikrullah According to the Verses of Holy Qur’an

The Fiqh of Islam, Vol 16

Ramadan Series 2013

Mawlana Shaykh Hisham Kabbani

24 July 2013 Fenton Zawiya, Michigan

Fajr Suhbah

As-salaamu `alaykum wa rahmatullaahi wa barakaatuh. Bismillahi 'r-Rahmani 'r-Raheem.

وَمَا آتَاكُمُ الرَّسُولُ فَخُذُوهُ وَمَا نَهَاكُمْ عَنْهُ فَانتَهُوا

Wa maa aataakumu ’r-rasoolu fakhudhoohu wa maa nahaakum `anhu fantahoo.

Leave what Prophet (s) forbade and take what he ordered. (Surat al-Hashr, 59:7)

أَطِيعُواْ اللّهَ وَأَطِيعُواْ الرَّسُولَ وَأُوْلِي الأَمْرِ مِنكُمْ

Atee`oollaha wa atee`oo 'r-Rasoola wa ooli 'l-amri minkum.

Obey Allah, obey the Prophet, and obey those in authority among you. (Surat an-Nisa, 4:59)

As-salaamu `alaykum yaa `ibaadullah, viewers, brothers and sisters wherever you are. Today we begin the chapter on dhikrullah and the importance of dhikr in Islam and what is meant by dhikrullah. First of all we will mention some ayahs of Holy Qur'an regarding dhikrullah, and there are too many of them. We will ask Shaykh Saahib to recite them:

فَاذْكُرُونِي أَذْكُرْكُمْ وَاشْكُرُواْ لِي وَلاَ تَكْفُرُو

Fadhkuroonee adhkurkum, w ’ashkuroo lee wa laa takfuroon.

Remember Me, I will remember you. Give thanks to Me and do not be ungrateful towards Me.

(Surat al-Baqarah, 2:152)

“Remember Me, I will remember you. Thank Me and don’t be an unbeliever, wa laa takfuroon, don’t be a person who has no belief.”

وَاذْكُر رَّبَّكَ فِي نَفْسِكَ تَضَرُّعاً وَخِيفَةً وَدُونَ الْجَهْرِ مِنَ الْقَوْلِ بِالْغُدُوِّ وَالآصَالِ وَلاَ تَكُن مِّنَ الْغَافِلِينَ

W ’adhkur rabbaka fee nafsika tadarru`an wa kheefatan wa doon al-jahri min al-qawli bi'l-ghudoowwi wa'l-aasaal wa laa takun min al-ghaafileen.

And remember your Lord within yourself in humility and in reverence, without loudness in words, in the mornings and evenings. And do not be among the heedless. (Surat al-`Araf, 7:205)

“Remember Allah (swt) within yourself, asking Him, begging Him, requesting Him as a weak servant, as a humble person, not as a proud person.” And when you remember Allah, remember what the Allah (swt) said to Prophet (s) in Surat al-Kahf:

قُلْ إِنَّمَا أَنَا بَشَرٌ مِّثْلُكُمْ يُوحَى إِلَيَّ

Qul innamaa anaa basharun mithlukum yoohaa ilayya.

Say, "I am but a man like yourselves.” (Surat al-Kahf, 18:110)

The Prophet (s) said, “I am only a human being like you.” Look how much he humbled himself. The one whom Allah brought to Qaaba Qawsayni aw Adnaa is saying, “I am only a human being like you.” Look how much he brought himself down to make sure that he is not praising himself. He (s) also said in a hadith:

اللَّهُمَّ لَا تَكِلْنِي إِلَى نَفْسِي طَرْفَةَ عَيْنٍ وَلَا أَقَلَّ مِنْ ذَلِكَ

Allahumma laa takilnee ila nafsee tarfat `aynin wa laa aqala min dhalika.

O Allah! Don't leave me to my ego for the blink of an eye or less.

If the Prophet (s) is saying, “Don’t leave me to myself for the blink of an eye,” what do we have to say? So humbleness is necessary to express that we are weak servants in front of Allah (swt), we are helpless without Allah’s support. So the verse says, “Remember Allah in your self,” tadarru`an wa kheefatan, requesting and asking and fearing from Him, wa doon al-jahri min al-qawl, without disturbing the people, without making dhikr in a loud voice in order that people will say, “Look what this person is doing!” For example, in common places or in a masjid when you are doing dhikr with a loud voice, if other people are reciting Qur’an you will disturb them, so try to do it in a lower voice and remember Allah “bi 'l-ghudoowwi wa'l-aasaal.” It means, whenever you leave your house to go to work, remember Allah on your way to your work, wa 'l-aasaal, and at Maghrib time when people come back from work you remember Allah (swt).

There is a kind of bird, al-ghuraab, a black crow. They move together and you can see them after Fajr as soon as the light begins to appear, then they move from the trees they are in by the hundreds and they go...Allah knows where they go. They go and then return to these trees in the evening. This is the seeking of work, when you go in the morning, as mentioned by Allah, “bi'l-ghudoowwi,” and when you come back from your work you remember Allah. “Remembering Allah” means remember Allah when you go to work and remember Him when you come home, and of course while you are working and wa laa takun min al-ghaafileen, “Don’t be a heedless person.” May Allah forgive us, like us, we are heedless, we forget and Allah says, “Don't forget, don’t forget! Remember Him when you are going and when you are coming,” but we forget. May Allah forgive us.

فِي بُيُوتٍ أَذِنَ اللَّهُ أَن تُرْفَعَ وَيُذْكَرَ فِيهَا اسْمُهُ يُسَبِّحُ لَهُ فِيهَا بِالْغُدُوِّ وَالْآصَالِ

Fee buyootin adhinaallahu an turfa`a wa yudhkkara feehaa ’smuhu yusabbihu lahu feehaa bi ’l-ghudoowwi wa ’l-aasaal.

(Lit is such a Light) in houses that Allah permitted to be raised to honor (and) for the celebration in them of His Name. In them is He glorified in the mornings and in the evenings, (again and again).

(Surat an-Noor, 24:36)

Allah gave permission fee buyootin, “in homes.” It’s not a home, it’s Allah’s House, which means “in masaajid,” in places where people pray for Allah (swt). He permits, an turfa`a wa yudhkkara feehaa ’smuhu, “to raise in it dhikrullah and for the people who are there to remember Him and to remember His Name.” Yusabbihu lahu feehaa bi ’l-ghudoowwi wa ’l-aasaal, “People praise Allah (swt) in these masaajid in the morning when they go to work and in the evening when they come,” which means they pass by the masaajid and for Fajr prayer and Maghrib and `Isha prayer.

رِجَالٌ لَّا تُلْهِيهِمْ تِجَارَةٌ وَلَا بَيْعٌ عَن ذِكْرِ اللَّهِ وَإِقَامِ الصَّلَاةِ وَإِيتَاء الزَّكَاةِ يَخَافُونَ يَوْمًا تَتَقَلَّبُ فِيهِ الْقُلُوبُ وَالْأَبْصَارُ

Rijaalun laa tulheehim tijaaratun wa laa bay`un `an dhikrillahi wa iqaami ‘s-salaati wa eetaai ‘z-zakaati yakhaafoona yawman tataqallabu feehi ‘l-quloobu wa ’l-absaar.

(Are) men whom neither commerce nor sale distracts from the remembrance of Allah and performance of prayer and giving of zakah. They fear a Day in which the hearts and eyes will (fearfully) turn about. (Surat an-Noor, 24:37)

By “men” (as it comes here as “men”), it means men and women, meaning anyone. “They will never be distracted and lose, they are never distracted through their businesses from dhikrullah.” Even if they are buying or selling, or speaking with customers, still they remember Allah (swt). They are a special group of “men.”

Bismillahi 'r-Rahmani 'r-Raheem.

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا اذْكُرُوا اللَّهَ ذِكْرًا كَثِيرًا وَسَبِّحُوهُ بُكْرَةً وَأَصِيلًا

Yaa ayyuha ’Lladheena aamanoo ’dhkurullah dhikran katheera wa sabbihoohu bukratan wa aseela.

O you who believe! Remember Allah with much remembrance and glorify Him early and late.

(Surat al-Ahzaab, 33:41,42)

“O people who believe, believers in Allah!” Allah is calling on us in the Holy Qur’an, udhkurallah, “remember Allah,” remember Him and what He gave you during the day. Remember Him, how He gave you eyes, ears, nose, hands, legs, and how He gave you a mind. Today you see many children come, people come to ask du`a for their children, they call it...they didn’t find it before as it was very rare, but now you are seeing it everywhere. People, you cannot control them, they keep screaming sometimes, and they call this high or low functioning. Low functioning is, they are, you can control these people, but they talk too much. High functioning, they are talking, but they scream and you cannot control them, they hurt themselves and hurt others. Today they call this autism.

That is because people forgot dhikrullah. Before there was dhikrullah, more than now, and one masjid will be mercy for the whole area, but now, although you have masaajid that mercy is lifted up because there is too much zhulmah and too many people reject dhikrullah. They say, “O no need, it’s too much! What is dhikrullah? Read Qur’an!” Allah (swt) says, “Remember Me, I remember you.” He said:

وَرَتَّلْنَاهُ تَرْتِيلًا

wa rattalnaahu tarteela

and We have rehearsed it to thee in slow, well-arranged stages, gradually. (25:32).

This means, “We have recited the Qur’an to Prophet (s).” So for sure, you have to read Qur’an, but you have to remember Allah (swt). Some people read Holy Qur'an and their mind is not in the Holy Qur’an, because it is a habit to read Qur’an; they read one chapter a day, but their mind is somewhere else. But when you do dhikrullah with your tongue or with your heart you will be always focusing.

We never saw this [disease of] autism in the past, from where did they bring this name? I don’t know what ‘autism’ means, but the condition means they are unstable in their minds, and this is because people are losing their dhikrullah. He (swt) is saying w’adhkurullaha dhikran katheera, “remember Allah excessively,” wa sabbihoohu bukratan wa aseela, “and praise Him in the morning, bukratan, and `aseelah, in the evening.”

And Allah (swt) said:

ا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تُلْهِكُمْ أَمْوَالُكُمْ وَلَا أَوْلَادُكُمْ عَن ذِكْرِ اللَّهِ وَمَن يَفْعَلْ ذَلِكَ فَأُوْلَئِكَ هُمُ الْخَاسِرُون

Bismillahi 'r-Rahmani 'r-Raheem. yaa ayyuhalladheena aamanoo laa tulhikum amwaalukum wa laa awlaadukum `an dhikri ‘Llaahi wa man yaf`al dhaalika fa-oolaaikahumu ‘l-khaasiroon.

O you who have believed! Let not your wealth and your children divert you from remembrance of Allah, and whoever does that, then those are the losers. (Surat al-Munaafiqoon, 63:9)

Allahumma salli `alaa Sayyidina Muhammad! Bismillahi 'r-Rahmani 'r-Raheem:

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ إِذَا لَقِيتُمْ فِئَةً فَاثْبُتُواْ وَاذْكُرُواْ اللّهَ كَثِيرًا لَّعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلَحُونَ

Yaa ayyuhalladheena aamanoo idhaa laqeetum fiatan fa ’thbutoo wa udhkuroo ‘Llaaha katheeran la`allakum tuflihoon.

O you who have believed! When you encounter a company (from the enemy forces), stand firm and remember Allah much that you may be successful. (Surat al-Anfaal, 8:45)

“O believers! If you see a group of people attacking you, you must do dhikrullaahi katheeran.” If you see a group of people who are angry, they want to fight with you and make a problem, what should you do? Remember Allah (swt), make salawaat on Prophet (s), make dhikrullah and try to cool yourself down. Try not to answer and hold together, hold yourself well by making dhikrullah not to come against them.

Bismillahi 'r-Rahmani 'r-Raheem:

وَالذَّاكِرِينَ اللَّهَ كَثِيرًا وَالذَّاكِرَاتِ أَعَدَّ اللَّهُ لَهُم مَّغْفِرَةً وَأَجْرًا عَظِيمًا

Wa ’dh-dhaakireena-Llaaha katheeran wa ’dh-dhaakiraati a`adda-Llaahu lahum maghfiratan wa ajran `azheema.

And men who remember Allah much and women who remember, for them has Allah prepared forgiveness and great reward. (Surat al-Ahzaab, 33:35)

Those men who remember Allah, “katheeran,” meaning excessively. Wa ‘dh-dhaakiraat, He adds here women as well, not only men, but men and women; “those who are remembering Allah excessively.”

Bismillahi 'r-Rahmani 'r-Raheem:

فَإِذَا قَضَيْتُم مَّنَاسِكَكُمْ فَاذْكُرُواْ اللّهَ كَذِكْرِكُمْ آبَاءكُمْ أَوْ أَشَدَّ ذِكْرًا فَمِنَ النَّاسِ مَن يَقُولُ رَبَّنَا آتِنَا فِي الدُّنْيَا وَمَا لَهُ فِي الآخِرَةِ مِنْ خَلاَقٍ

Fa idhaa qadaytum manaasikakum fadhkuroo ‘Llaaha kadhikrikum aabaakum aw ashadda dhikraa fa min an-naasi man yaqoolu rabbanaa aatinaa fi ‘d-dunyaa wa maa lahu fi ‘l-aakhirati min khalaaq.

So when you have accomplished your holy rites, celebrate the praises of Allah, as you used to celebrate the praises of your fathers, or with far more heart and soul. There are men who say, “Our Lord! Give us (Your bounties) in this world!" but they will have no portion in the Hereafter.

(Surat al-Baqarah, 2:200)

Fa idhaa qadaytum manaasikakum fadhkuru ‘Llaaha, “When you finished all the rites of Hajj, remember Allah (swt).” When you are coming down from `Arafat, because this is the peak of the Hajj rites, it is the ‘cream of the coffee.’ When you are coming down and you leave in the evening, it is the peak of the Hajj. So He is saying, fadhkuru ‘Llaaha kadhikrikum aabaakum, “When this happens, mention Allah as you mention your parents.” How do you mention your parents? By name, by name; for example, it’s not related here, but you say, “O father, father!” you mention his name, “Dad! Daddy!” or, “Yassir,” or “`Omar,” or “`Ali,” or “Fatima,” you mention the name. So that means dhikrullah is through Allah’s Name. When you do dhikrullah, you do it through His Beautiful Names and Attributes, which is important for us in a jama`ah or by yourself, in a loud voice together when in jama`ah or by yourself when there is no one there, by mentioning Allah’s Ninety-Nine Beautiful Names and Attributes.

You cannot only mention Allah’s verses of Holy Qur’an; if you do that, that is dhikrullah, but dhikrullah is also mentioning Allah, ka-dhikrikum, “in the same way that you mention your parents,” with all kind of emotion and love, or as He said, aw ashadda dhikraa, “or more!” It must be more, more than what you mention of your parents or your children or your babies. They mention babies more than they mention anything today and mentioning Allah (swt) is better.

So these are some of the verses of Holy Qur'an that Allah mentioned dhikrullah in them. Also, there is the ayah, “Allaahu nooru 's-samaawaati wa 'l-ard.”

اللَّهُ نُورُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ مَثَلُ نُورِهِ كَمِشْكَاةٍ فِيهَا مِصْبَاحٌ الْمِصْبَاحُ فِي زُجَاجَةٍ الزُّجَاجَةُ كَأَنَّهَا كَوْكَبٌ دُرِّيٌّ يُوقَدُ مِن شَجَرَةٍ مُّبَارَكَةٍ زَيْتُونِةٍ لَّا شَرْقِيَّةٍ وَلَا غَرْبِيَّةٍ يَكَادُ زَيْتُهَا يُضِيءُ وَلَوْ لَمْ تَمْسَسْهُ نَارٌ نُّورٌ عَلَى نُورٍ يَهْدِي اللَّهُ لِنُورِهِ مَن يَشَاء وَيَضْرِبُ اللَّهُ الْأَمْثَالَ لِلنَّاسِ وَاللَّهُ بِكُلِّ شَيْءٍ عَلِيمٌ

Allaahu nooru 's-samaawaati wa 'l-ardi mathala noorihi kamishkaatin feehaa misbaahun al-misbaahu fee zujaajatin, az-zujaajatu ka-annahaa kawkabun durriyy. Yooqadu min shajaratin mubaarakatin zaytoonatin laa sharqiyyatin wa laa gharbiyyatin yakaadu zaytuhaa yudeeu wa law lam tamsas-hu naarun noor `alaa noor. yahdiya’Llaahu li-noorihi man yashaa wa yadribu ’Llaahu’l-amthaala li ’n-naasi w’ Allahu bi-kulli shayin `aleem.

Allah is the Light of the Heavens and Earth. The parable of His Light is as if there were a niche and within it a lamp: the lamp is in a glass, the glass like a Brilliant Star lit from a blessed tree, an olive tree that is neither of the East nor of the West, the oil of which is so bright that it would certainly give light of itself. Light upon Light! Allah guides whom He will to His Light: Allah sets forth Parables for men: and Allah knows all things. (Surat an-Noor, 24:35)

“Allah is the Light of Heavens and Earth. Mathala noorihi ka mishkaathin feehi misbaah, His Light is like a bundle that carries.” Allah (swt) knows what it carries, but scholars say it is like a bundle of different lights and in the middle is a huge misbaah, lamp.” Mathala noorihi ka mishkaathin feehi misbaah, “(The example of His Light) is a bundle that inside it is a Lamp. That Lamp is inside a glass, zujaaja, ka-annahaa kawkabun durriyy, and it looks like a white, shining pearl, kawkabun.”

“Kawkab” is a star or planet. Allah (swt) is describing that Lamp like a star, a great star. You can see stars bigger than the Sun, you can see stars bigger than this galaxy. Allah (swt) is giving an example and we can go further into that later, but He is saying, “That Lamp is shining like a pearl, like a star, shining like a pearl,” yooqadu min shajaratin mubaarakatin, “it is ignited from an olive tree,” laa sharqiyyatin wa laa gharbiyyatin, “that is neither from the East nor from the West,” but it is in this universe, “and the oil of this Lamp is as if it is going to burst into a Shining Star, even though not touched by fire that makes light, but as if glowing by itself,” noorun `ala noor, “Light over Light,” yahdiya’Llaahu li-noorihi man yashaa, “Allah guides whom He likes to His Light,” wa yadribu ’Llaahu’l-amthaala li ’n-naasi, “and Allah gives examples for people.” And Allah knows best.

That Light, “Allaahu nooru 's-samaawaati wa 'l-ardi mathala noorihi kamishkaatin,” that mishkaat, that Lamp, that Light as said by scholars, by `ulama, is Rasoolullah (s), and Allah (swt) gave from His Light to the Prophet (s) when He created him before Creation as a Light. Before He created any Creation, Allah created the Light of Prophet (s) and that is why the Prophet (s) said:

كنت نبي و ادم بين الماء و الطين

Kuntu Nabiyyin wa adamu bayna 'l-maa'i wa 't-teen,

I was a prophet when Adam was between water and clay.

كنت نبيا وآدم بين الروح والجسد

Kuntu nabiyyan wa adam bayna ’r-roohi wa ’l-jasad.

I was a prophet while Adam was between soul and body.

So that Light, as it is said, and we will explain later about that Light, is an example of Prophet’s (s) Light.

قال أبي بن كعب: (مثل نوره في قلب المسلم) وهذا هو النور الذي اودعه في قلبه من معرفته ومحبته والايمان به وذكره وهو نوره الذي انزله اليهم فأحياهم به وجعلهم يمشون به بين الناس وأصله في قلوبهم ثم تقوى مادته فتتزايد حتى يظهر على وجوههم وجوارحهم وابدانهم بل وثيابهم ودورهم يبصره من هو من جنسهم وسائر الخلق له منكر فإذا كان يوم القيامة برز ذلك النور وصار بايمانهم يسعى بين ايديهم في ظلمة الجسر حتى يقطعوه وهم فيه على حسب قوته وضعفه في قلوبهم في الدنيا فمنهم من نوره كالشمس واخر كالقمر واخر كالنجوم واخر كالسراج واخر يعطي نورا على ابهام قدمه يضئ مرة ويطفأ اخرى، اذا كانت هذه حال نوره في الدنيا فأعطي على الجسر بمقدار ذلك بل هو نفس نوره ظهر له عيانا ولما لم يكن للمنافق نور ثابت في الدنيا بل كان نوره ظاهرا لا باطنا اعطى نورا ظاهرا مآله إلى الظلمة والذهاب.

Qaala Ubay Ibn Ka`b: mathala noorihi fee qalbi ‘l-muslim, wa haadha huwa’n-noor alladhee awda`ahu fee qalbihi min ma`rifatihi wa mahabatihi wa ’l-eemaanu bihi wa dhikruhu wa huwa noorahu ’Lladhee unzilahu ilayhim fa ahyaahum bihi wa j`alahum yamshoona bihi bayn an-naasi wa asluhu fee quloobihim thumma taqwaa maadatahu fa-tatazaayad hattaa yazhhar `alaa wujoohihim wa jawaarihihim wa abdaanihim bal wa thiyaabihim wa dawrihim man hum min jinsihim wa saa’iri’l-khalq lahun munkirun fa idhaa kaana yawm al-qiyaamata baraz dhaalik an-noor wa saara bi-aymaanihim yas`a bayna aydeehim fee zhulmati ’l-jisr bi-miqdaari dhaalika bal huwa nafsa noorahu zhahra lahu `ayaanan wa lamaa lam yakun li ’l-munaafiq noorun thaabit fi ’d-dunyaa bal kaana noorahu zhaahiran laa baatinaan u`tiya nooran zhaahiran maalahu ilaa ’zh-zhulmata wa ’dh-dhihaab.

Ubay Ibn Ka`b (r) said, “The example of His Light….” Allah is the Light of Heavens and Earth, but, “the example of that Light is the Light that He sent….” meaning, “the evidence of that Light is the Light He sent to a person who is a Muslim and who is a believer. He fills his heart with that Light, the Light that is shining in Heavens and Earth, Allah (swt) put from that Light.”

Allaahu nooru 's-samaawaati wa 'l-ardi. Noor is one of the Beautiful Names and Attributes of Allah (swt),

وقد ضرب سبحانه وتعالى النور في قلب عبده مثلا لا يعقله إلا العالمون

Wa qad daraba subhaana wa ta`alaa an-noor fee qalbi `abdihi mathalan laa ya`qiluhu illa ‘l-`alimoon, “So that Noor, that Light, describes Allah’s Greatness in the metaphor of Light that goes into the heart of His servant. No one will understand that metaphor except al-`alimoon, the Knowers”

He wants to introduce here that not everyone can see this Light, only those who are `ulama. Here it is not “`ulama” in the meaning of scholars, but in the meaning of “Knowers,” the People of Gnosticism, the People of Ma`rifah, those can understand, because he said, fa qaala Subhaanahu wa Ta`alaa Allaahu nooru 's-samaawaati wa 'l-ard, “Allah is the Light of Heavens and Earth.” That Light, no one can understand except the people whom Allah (swt) gave the power of understanding through the cleanliness of their hearts. Allah (swt) gave it to them because their hearts are clean.

وهو نوره الذي انزله اليهم فأحياهم به وجعلهم يمشون به بين الناس وأصله في قلوبهم

Wa huwa noorahu ’Lladhee anzalahu ilayhim fa ahyaahum bihi wa ja`alahum yamshoona bayna ‘n-naas, wa asluhu fee quloobihim.

“It is that Light that is put in their hearts that makes them to shine like a spotlight between people and the origin of that Light is in their hearts.”

مادته فتتزايد حتى يظهر على وجوههم وجوارحهم وابدانهم بل وثيابهم ودورهم يبصره من هو من جنسهم وسائر الخلق له منكر فإذا كان يوم القيامة برز ذلك النور وصار بايمانهم يسعى بين ايديهم في ظلمة الجسر

Fa tatazaayad hattaa yazhhar `alaa wujoohihim wa jawaarihihim wa abdaanihim bal wa thiyaabihim wa dawrihim man hum min jinsihim wa saa’iri’l-khalq lahun munkirun fa idhaa kaana yawm al-qiyaamata baraz dhaalik an-noor wa saara bi-aymaanihim yas`a bayna aydeehim fee zhulmati’l-jisr.

He (Ubay Ibn Ka`b) said, “So when that Light increases in their heart by dhikrullah, slowly, slowly, increasing through dhikrullah it appears in their faces and their limbs and their bodies and even on their clothes.”

You see the Light, because the Light will take over because you know today that we see through light, different colors and things you see through light. It depends on how the light goes through the different things you are looking at and how that light is absorbed, and once it is absorbed you see the color. So awliyaullah, anyone who looks at them can see the Light in their faces.

So you can detect, people can see, “O, this person looks different! He is like us, but there is something on his face, noor al-imaan, the Light of Faith, there is something that we don’t have that he has.” That’s why people are attracted to him. I heard from Grandshaykh (q) that there are awliyaullah that they don’t do that, but if they want, they only have to say, “Yaa Rabbee, open to us for people to come and listen to us,” and people would be yashafoona zahfan, crawling on their chests to reach these awliyaullah, about whom Allah (swt) mentioned in a Holy Hadith:

من عادا لي وليا فقد آذنته بالحرب

Man `adaa lee waliyyan faqad aadhantahu bi ’l-harb.

(Allah [swt] said) Whoever comes against a Friend of Mine, I declare war on him.

(Hadith Qudsi; Bukhari, from Abu Hurayrah)

Such as these are the Friends of Allah (swt) that Allah gave them power.

What did the Prophet (s) mention about dhikrullah?

وَآمُرُكُمْ أَنْ تَذْكُرُوا اللَّهَ فَإِنَّ مَثَلَ ذَلِكَ كَمَثَلِ رَجُلٍ خَرَجَ الْعَدُوُّ فِي أَثَرِهِ سِرَاعًا حَتَّى إِذَا أَتَى عَلَى حِصْنٍ حَصِينٍ فَأَحْرَزَ نَفْسَهُ مِنْهُمْ كَذَلِكَ الْعَبْدُ لاَ يُحْرِزُ نَفْسَهُ مِنَ الشَّيْطَانِ إِلاَّ بِذِكْرِ اللَّهِ ‏

Wa aamurukum an tadhkuru ’Llaah fa inna mithla dhaalik ka-mathali rajulin kharaja ‘l-`adoowwu fee atharihi siraa`an hattaa idhaa ataa `alaa hisnin haseen fa-ahraza nafsahu minhum kadhaalika ‘l-`abdu laa yuhrizu nafsihi min ash-shaytaan illa bi dhikrillah

And He commands you to remember Allah, for indeed the parable of that is a man whose enemy quickly tracks him until he reaches an impermeable fortress in which he protects himself from them. This is how the worshiper is: he does not protect himself from Shaytan except by the remembrance of Allah.” (Tirmidhi, Ahmad)

“Dhikrullah is like a man who went out somewhere and enemies knew that person went that way, and ran after him to catch and kill him, until he is running away from them and reaches a very strong fortress that is in a safe position so that they cannot come inside.” The enemy cannot come inside, so he saved himself from them trying to kill him. Dhikrullah is your safety from Shaytan; it is as if you have run to Allah (swt) and He will protect you so that Shaytan cannot reach you.

It is said, “If there were nothing in dhikrullah except to save you from Shaytan, then that is the great favor that Allah (swt) has given to you.” If there is nothing else, if dhikrullah didn’t do anything else, this is the biggest benefit or favor that you can achieve. That is why it is our obligation, because Allah is protecting us through dhikrullah. The Prophet (s) said, “You have to keep your tongue always mentioning and remembering Allah (swt).”

Ibn Qayyim continues his explanation:

فإنه لا يحرز نفسه من عدوه إلا بالذكر ولا يدخل عليه العدو إلا من باب الغفلة فهو يرصده فإذا غفل وثب عليه وافترسه

Fa innahu laa yuhrizu nafsahu min `adoowwihi illaa bi ’dh-dhikr wa laa yadkhul `alayhi ‘l-`adoow ilaa min baabi ‘l-ghafla fa huwa yarsuduhu fa idhaa ghafala wa thaba `alayhi wa aftarasuh

He cannot save himself from the enemy except by dhikrullah. The enemy will not enter the heart except through the door of heedlessness. He is observing you and when he sees you neglectful he pounces on you and devours you.

How does the enemy, Shaytan, enter to you? When he sees you are heedless of dhikrullah, he immediately penetrates into your heart and tries to take you away from Allah (swt) and that’s how we forget. Like today they call that sickness for people who forget, “Alzheimer’s.” Alzheimer’s makes you to forget, you don’t remember anything. Also, when Shaytan enters into your heart, he makes you forget. When you remember, then immediately do dhikrullah and he will run away. With Alzheimer’s, sometimes you remember and sometimes you don’t. From the religious or spiritual point of view, we are all sick with Alzheimer’s; Shaytan makes that possible by entering our hearts. Ibn Qayyim said, “The enemy will not enter the heart except through the door of heedlessness.” Shaytan is observing you, like he has cameras. Like today they have cameras everywhere, they know you, and not only that, but through your telephone, through your TV, through your credit card, through your computer, they can know anywhere you are going and they can find you as they have GPS.

One time I went in a car with someone and he was pushing some buttons...this was six or seven years ago, because the one who invented the GPS is from California, he is a convert through us and his name is Simon. He is the one who invented the GPS navigation used in cars. So I was in a car with him and heard a lady, and there was no lady in the car, and she was saying to him, “Drive right, drive left,” then, “You reached your destination.”

I asked him, “What is that?”

He said, “That is the GPS, navigation system.” He didn’t show it to me at the beginning.

So Shaytan has a GPS and when we are heedless he runs in our direction searching for us. Angels have GPS, but a heavenly GPS, and when we are in dhikrullah they come and join us. So dhikrullah is very important to protect ourselves from Shaytan, not to jump on us and kill us.

Ibn Qayyim states:

وإذا ذكر الله تعالى انخنس عدو الله تعالى وتصاغر وانقمع حتى يكون كالوصع وكالذباب ولهذا سمي الوسواس الخناس أي يوسوس في الصدور

Wa idhaa dhukira ‘Llaahu ta`ala ankhanasa `adoowwillahi ta`ala wa tasaaghara wa anqama` hattaa yakoona ka ‘l-wasa`, wa ka ’dh-dhubaab wa li haadhaa summiyya al-waswaasu ‘l-khannaas.

When Allah is mentioned, Shaytan will shrink and shrink until he has no power, until he becomes smaller than a bird, and more than that, ka ’dh-dhubaab, he becomes like a fly, very small. For that reason he was called al-waswaasu ‘l-khannaas, “the fly that gossips in the hearts of people.”

That’s why when you see a black fly, be careful from Shaytan, try to protect yourself (from it)..

قال ابن عباس : الشيطان جاثم على قلب أبن آدم فإذا سها وغفل وسوس فإذا ذكر الله تعالى خنس

Qaala ibn `Abbas: ash-shaytaanu jaathimun `alaa qalb ibni Adam, fa idhaa sahaawa ghafala waswasa fa idhaa dhukirullahi ta`alaa khanasa.

Ibn `Abbas[1] (r) said, “The Shaytan is always standing on the heart of human beings. If one forgets and becomes heedless, he begins to gossip in his ear waswasa, but if he mentions Allah [by His Divine Names and Attributes] immediately he (shaytan) weakens.”

Inshaa-Allah, in the next session we will speak about hadith of Prophet (s) and after that we will go into explanation of different ahadeeth about dhikrullah.

Wa min Allah at-tawfeeq bi hurmati 'l-Fatihah.


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[1] One of the greatest muhadditheen in the time of the Prophet (s) and after the time of the Prophet (s), in Tafseer al-Qur’an, the explanation of the Holy Qur’an.