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Some Benefits of Bismillahi ‘r-Rahmani ‘r-Raheem

The Benefits of Bismillah Series, Vol 1

Mawlana Shaykh Hisham Kabbani

6 August 2012 Nelson, UK

Suhbah after Fajr at Jamia Ghausia Masjid (1)

Allahumma salli `ala Sayyidina Muhammad, hatta yarda Sayyidina Muhammad!

A`oodhu billahi min ash-Shaytaani 'r-rajeem. Bismillahi 'r-Rahmaani 'r-Raheem.

Nawaytu 'l-arba`een, nawaytu 'l-`itikaaf, nawaytu 'l-khalwah, nawaytu 'l-`uzlah,

nawaytu 'r-riyaadah, nawaytu 's-sulook, lillahi ta`alaa fee haadha 'l-masjid.

أَطِيعُواْ اللّهَ وَأَطِيعُواْ الرَّسُولَ وَأُوْلِي الأَمْرِ مِنكُمْ

Ati`oollaha wa ati`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 wa rahmatullaahi wa barakaatuh. It is a new day and a new page; every day is a page in our life. We don't want to lose these special moments in this house of Allah, so we try to sit together as much as we can. Sayyidina Anas ibn Malik (r) related that Prophet (s) said:

إذا مررتم برياض الجنة فارتعوا، قالوا: وما رياض الجنة؟ قال: حلق الذكر.

Wa idhaa ra'aytum riyaad al-Jannati farta`oo feehaa. qaaloo yaa Rasoolullah wa maa riyaadu ‘l-Jannah. Qaaloo yaa Rasoolullah wa maa riyaadu ‘l-Jannah. Qaala Rasoolullah hilaqu ‘d-dhikr.

(O my Companions!) If you find the Heavenly Gardens on earth, stay there and sit in it and be in it. They asked, “What are these riyaadu ‘l-Jannah that we must run to?” He said, "Associations of dhikrullah."

That is why we don't want to lose the meaning of that hadith, but we have to fulfill it as much as we can. Prophet (s) said, wa idhaa ra’aytum riyaadu ‘l-Jannah, “If you pass through a group of people sitting like this, it is considered a rawdah from Paradise,” meaning a quarter of Jannah, which is assigned to people. Sitting in a masjid or a house making dhikrullah, remembering Allah (swt) and His Prophet (s), and sitting and listening to each other is rawdatu ‘l-Jannah. Everyone is killing themselves to reach Madinatu 'l-Munawwara to visit Prophet and to pray in Rawdat an-Nabi (s). We try to go there because it is a piece of Paradise, but why? Did Allah bring a stone like Hajar al-Aswad there? No, it is because of the barakah of the feet of Prophet (s): when they touched that place they turned it into a rawdah of Paradise. Prophet wants his ummah to be dressed with the secret of being in dunya, while in reality they are in Paradise!

So wherever and whenever these meetings happen, such as in masajid where people sit together making dhikrullah, it becomes a rawdah of Riyaadu ‘l-Jannah, a place of peace and safety from Hellfire. So even if you sit in a place of Riyaadu ‘l-Jannah once, do you think Allah (swt) is going to put you in Hellfire after He dressed you with the manifestations and beautiful paradises of Jannah? No way! That is why Prophet (s) said, “Sit and graze,” meaning, sit and eat from the manifestations of dhikr, from the Beautiful Names and Attributes, as you are remembering Allah (swt) with these words.

O Muslims! Hilaqu ‘d-dhikr and dhikrullah are mentioned in many ahadith. Anything that relates to dhikrullah is Heaven. If you read Qur’an or ahadith, make salawaat, recite the Beautiful Names and Attributes, or even if two people sit together in a masjid without saying anything, it is considered dhikrullah as their breath will become dhikrullah!

Imam Jalaluddin as-Suyuti (r), who wrote the first half of Tafsir al-Jalalayn, among many other books, was asked:

Regarding dhikr associations, is it accepted or makhrooh, disliked, to raise your voice loud when you are in a masjid and you say, “SubhaanAllah, w 'alhamdulillah, wa laa illaha illa-Llah, w 'Allahu Akbar?” He said, “There is no dislike in anything like that, but it is accepted and liked by Allah (swt) and His Prophet (s).” (Imam Suyuti, Kashf al-Kina`ah)

Therefore, no one can say that dhikrullah is not allowed! Imam Suyuti, one of the big `ulama whose works they still study everywhere around the world, even in countries where they have their own madhdhab, said, “Allah likes associations in which they do dhikrullah,” so that is clear for us, for the audience and all those who are listening. He also said there are so many ahadith about loud dhikr and one states that it is also liked for you to raise your voice when reciting Holy Qur’an. So when you are reading Holy Qur'an, you mention many times suhbaanAllah, alhamdulillah, “Allah” or “Muhammad,” or Allah’s Beautiful Names and Attributes are mentioned and we know Allah (swt) said, “Call Me with these Beautiful Names and Attributes,” whatever of these are mentioned in Holy Qur'an, you can add to your daily wird or recite some of these words in

jama`ah and Allah likes that.

Imam Nawawi (r) mentioned in his book Al-Adhkaar that to use a loud voice in dhikrullah is accepted in some areas more than the hidden (silent) dhikr is recommended. Therefore, we are quoting both `ulama in order to show that dhikrullah is accepted in whatever form you like. Is, “Bismillahi 'r-Rahmaani 'r-Raheem” mentioned in the Holy Qur’an or not? If we say, “Bismillahi 'r-Rahmaani 'r-Raheem, Bismillahi 'r-Rahmaani 'r-Raheem, Bismillahi 'r-Rahmaani 'r-Raheem,” what do we get?

Ibn Mas`ood (r), one of the greatest Sahaabi scholars, said:

Whoever wants Allah (swt) to save him from the nineteen angels who control Jahannam has to say, “Bismillahi 'r-Rahmaani 'r-Raheem.” Allah will make every letter from Bismillahi 'r-Rahmaani 'r-Raheem a safety from these angels. If he was judged for punishment, these angels will take him out from Jahannam because he recited “Bismillahi 'r-Rahmaani 'r-Raheem.”

Bismillahi 'r-Rahmaani 'r-Raheem has nineteen letters, and there are nineteen angels who guard Hellfire, so each letter of Bismillahi 'r-Rahmaani 'r-Raheem represents one angel and you are asking Allah to save you from Hellfire! If you look at the Holy Qur'an and ahadith, everything has a meaning and a sign. There are three places where everyone can see the relationship between calling Allah (swt) through Bismillahi 'r-Rahmaani 'r-Raheem or calling Prophet (s) through certain names that he likes. Bismillahi 'r-Rahmaani 'r-Raheem equals the nineteen angels of Hellfire, which equals the nineteen letters that consist of Ahlu ‘l-`Abbaa, the Family of the Prophet (s), with whom the Prophet covered with his jubbah and said, “These are my family, don't hurt them.” Ahlu ‘l-`Aabbaa is comprised of the Prophet (s), his daughter Fatimah (r), Sayyidina `Ali (r), Sayyidina Hassan (r) and Sayyidina Hussayn (r).

If you count the letters of their names it equals nineteen, and each letter of their names represents “Bismillahi 'r-Rahmaani 'r-Raheem.” “Muhammad” is comprised of four letters, “Fatimah” is five letters, etc., and if you add them it equals nineteen. Bismillahi 'r-Rahmaani 'r-Raheem equals nineteen letters and the angels of Hellfire are nineteen, so the barakah of Prophet and Bismillahi 'r-Rahmaani 'r-Raheem will save you from Hellfire! Therefore, dhikr is important in Islam, in spirituality, and for everyone to save themselves from Hellfire. Say “Bismillahi 'r-Rahmaani 'r-Raheem” as much as you can, and our teacher ordered us to recite it one-hundred times daily.

Now we will relate a hadith from Bukhari, because some people on the Internet say, “We only want ahadith from Imam Bukhari.” Was Imam Bukhari the only person to relate ahadith? No, Prophet (s) used to speak with the young, the elders, everyone, and not all Sahaabah (r) heard all ahadith! Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal (r) memorized 300,000 ahadith in more than fifty different categories! Nevermind, we will recite a hadith from Bukhari:

Prophet said, “Allah has angels who roam the streets," just like your telephones use roaming technology, does Allah not have heavenly technology? Kun fa yakoon! Allah ordered angels to look for associations of dhikr like this one here. Angels are filling the place, though we cannot see them, the imaam can see them and perhaps some of the viewers can see them; many people can see and many cannot. “At-turuq” has two meanings, one of which is “the street.” “At-tareeq” is singular, “at-turuq” is plural, and it also means the Sufi Orders, that the angels are first going to the people of Ahlu ‘l-Tasawwuf because they are the real Ahlu ’s-Sunnah wa ’l-Jama`ah who love the Prophet (s), who make dhikr and accept everything that shows the Greatness of Sayyidina Muhammad (s)!

(Naray takbeer!) That’s nice, now we are in Pakistan! (laughter) These angels are happy with Ahlu ‘l-Tariqah, the People of Tariqah.

وَأََّلوِ اسْتَقَامُوا عَلَى الطَّرِيقَةِ لَأَسْقَيْنَاهُم مَّاء غَدَقًا

Wa law istiqaamoo `alaa ‘t-tareeqati la-asqaynaahum maa’an ghadaqa.

If they had (only) remained on the (right) Way, We should certainly have bestowed on them rain in abundance. (Surat al-Jinn, 72:16)

It means, “If they keep on the right path, Siraatu 'l-Mustaqeem,” and it also means, “If they keep on their tariqah, under the guidance of their shuyookh in different turuq.” There are many turuq with many shuyookh and each one has his own understanding and way that he feels Allah (swt) has dressed him with, and we cannot deny that. There are forty-one main tariqahs such as Chishti, Qadiri, Naqshbandi, Shadhili, and Muridiyya. We cannot deny any of them, and each one is guiding you to Allah (swt) and to the door of Prophet (s).

The angels are searching for people who are remembering Allah (swt). They found them here! Today we are here, but it might be that there are other people somewhere else. Even if there is one person on a mountain, they will find him because if someone is on a mountain making dhikrullah, angels will be there! If they find a group of people remembering Allah (swt), they say, “Come quickly! We must sit here!” and now they are sitting here among us. We don't see them, but they are here and we are being dressed with their presence, have no doubt! They wrap their wings around you, going up, up, up (if we can say “up,” as there is no up or down in heavens), and they encompass you in circles until they reach as-samaa’ ad-dunya. The entire group of people is encircled by angels! Can you count how many angels that is? It’s beyond the universe! Scientists found there are 60,000 galaxies and each galaxy has more than 80 billion stars, and yet this is still not the whole universe. We don’t want to go into Physics now, but they go above that, where there is nothing except heavens and their dhikr will be written for us.

عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ رضي الله عنه قَالَ: قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلي الله عليه وآله وسلم: إِنَّ لِلَّهِ مَلَائِكَةً يَطُوفُونَ فِي الطُّرُقِ، يَلْتَمِسُونَ أَهْلَ الذِّكْرِ، فَإِذَا وَجَدُوا قَوْمًا يَذْكُرُونَ اللَّهَ تَنَادَوْا، هَلُمُّوا إِلَى حَاجَتِكُمْ. قَالَ: فَيَحُفُّونَهُمْ بِأَجْنِحَتِهِمْ إِلَى السَّمَاءِ الدُّنْيَا. قَالَ. فَيَسْأَلُهُمْ رَبُّهُمْ – وَهُوَ أَعْلَمُ مِنْهُمْ: مَا يَقُولُ عِبَادِي؟ قَالَ: تَقُولُ: يُسَبِّحُونَكَ وَيُكَبِّرُونَكَ وَيَحْمَدُونَكَ وَيُمَجِّدُونَكَ. قَالَ فَيَقُولُ: هَلْ رَأَوْنِي؟ قَالَ: فَيَقُولُونَ: لَا وَاللَّهِ مَا رَأَوْكَ. قَالَ: فَيَقُولُ: وَكَيْفَ لَوْ رَأَوْنِي؟ قَالَ: يَقُولُونَ: لَوْ رَأَوْكَ كَانُوا أَشَدَّ لَكَ عِبَادَةً، وَأَشَدَّ لَكَ تَمْجِيدًا، وَأَكْثَرَ لَكَ تَسْبِيحًا. قَالَ: يَقُولُ: فَمَا يَسْأَلُونَنِي؟ قَالَ: يَسْأَلُونَكَ الْجَنَّةَ. قَالَ: يَقُولُ: وَهَلْ رَأَوْهَا؟ قَالَ: يَقُولُونَ: لَا وَاللَّهِ يَا رَبِّ! مَا رَأَوْهَا. قَالَ: يَقُولُ: فَكَيْفَ لَوْ أَنَّهُمْ رَأَوْهَا؟ قَالَ: يَقُولُونَ: لَوْ أَنَّهُمْ رَأَوْهَا كَانُوا أَشَدَّ عَلَيْهَا حِرْصًا، وَأَشَدَّ لَهَا طَلَبًا، وَأَعْظَمَ فِيهَا رَغْبَةً. قَالَ: فَمِمَّ يَتَعَوَّذُونَ؟ قَالَ: يَقُولُونَ: مِنْ النَّارِ. قَالَ: يَقُولُ: وَهَلْ رَأَوْهَا؟ قَالَ: يَقُولُونَ: لَا وَاللَّهِ يَا رَبِّ! مَا رَأَوْهَا. قَالَ: يَقُولُ: فَكَيْفَ لَوْ رَأَوْهَا؟ قَالَ: يَقُولُونَ: لَوْ رَأَوْهَا كَانُوا أَشَدَّ مِنْهَا فِرَارًا، وَأَشَدَّ لَهَا مَخَافَةً. قَالَ: فَيَقُولُ: فَأُشْهِدُكُمْ أَنِّي قَدْ غَفَرْتُ لَهُمْ. قَالَ: يَقُولُ مَلَكٌ مِنْ الْمَلَائِكَةِ: فِيهِمْ فُلَانٌ، لَيْسَ مِنْهُمْ، إِنَّمَا جَاءَ لِحَاجَةٍ. قَالَ: هُمْ الْجُلَسَاءُ لَا يَشْقَى بِهِمْ جَلِيسُهُمْ.

Abu Hurayrah (r) narrates that the Messenger of Allah (swt) said:

Allah has angels who wander around on roads in search of people who remember Allah. When they find such people they call other angels, “Come to your coveted company.” Then they spread their wings over them up to the lowest heaven. Their Lord asks them, although He knows better about them, “What are My servants saying?” They reply, “They are glorifying You, proclaiming Your Greatness, praising You and pronouncing Your Grandeur.” The Messenger of Allah said, “Then Allah asks, ‘Have they seen Me?’ They reply, “No, by Allah, they have not seen You.” The Messenger of Allah said, “Allah asks, ‘How would have they acted, if they had seen Me?’ They reply, ‘Had they seen You, they would have worshipped You, magnified You and glorified You more earnestly.’ Then Allah asks, ‘What are they asking Me for?’ The angels say, ‘They are asking You for Paradise.’ The Messenger of Allah said, “Allah asks, ‘Have they seen it?’ They reply, ‘No, we swear by Allah, our Lord, they have not seen it.’ He asks, ‘How would have they acted if they had seen it?’ The angels reply, ‘If they had seen it, they would have been more intensely eager for it, would have asked more earnestly for it and would have had a greater desire for it.’ He asks, ‘What are they seeking refuge from?’ They reply, ‘From the Hell.’ He asks, ‘Have they seen it?’ They reply, ‘No, by our Lord, they have not seen this as well.’ He asks, ‘What would have been their state, had they seen it?’ They reply, ‘Had they seen it, they would have fled from it with greater speed and greater fear.’ He says, ‘Bear witness that I have forgiven them.’ Some of the angels submit, ‘Among them is so-and-so who has come for his own purpose (and not to join in remembrance).’ Allah says, ‘He has been in their company and those who join their company do not remain deprived.’” (Bukhari)

Say, “Allah! Laa ilaaha illa-Llah! Allahumma ajirnaa min an-naar, O Allah! Save me from Hellfire.” It is recommended to say this seven times a day in the morning, seeking refuge in Allah from Hellfire, asking Allah for Paradise, asking to see Him in Akhirah, asking Allah for everything. In the end He will say, “You are My Witness that I have forgiven them, so go and celebrate your happiness by making Mawlid for Prophet (s).” That is our celebration for happiness, not to entertain ourselves here and there. No, our happiness is in Muhammad (s), our life is in Muhammad (s), our love to our children and family is in Muhammad (s), everything for us is Muhammad (s), because he takes us to the door of Allah (swt)!

One of the angels will say, “There is one between them who is not from them, he only came to see so-and-so. He didn’t make dhikr, he only came to speak to someone.”

Allah (swt) will say, “Anyone who comes to sit even for a moment with those who are sitting for Allah’s Love will be granted freedom from Hellfire!”

Allah will keep those friends together. A person may come for some other need, but because he is a friend of these circles of dhikr, Allah will forgive him.

O viewers! This is very little of what treasures of Islam you can find. Read about the greatness of dhikrullah, which has no limits of rewards, nor can anyone understand how much Allah will reward those who sit in dhikr, ladies and men, who ask from Him!

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)

One of the great scholars, al-Khawwas (r), said, “It is important for the one sitting in the dhikr association to make dhikr with complete force.” It is like some people here, when you mention something they like to proclaim loudly, “Takbeer! Allahu Akbar!” That is how it should be said. Allah likes His Servants to call Him with love. If you say it softly you will be rewarded, but you have to show eagerness for love of Allah (swt) and love of Prophet (s). The scholar said, “He has to be with a group of people.” Why does he have to be with a group of people and not alone? You can do it by yourself, but he insisted that you have to be with a group of people because of the following:

يد الله مع على الجماعة

Yadullaahi ma`a ‘l-jama`ah.

The Hand of Allah is with the congregation. (Tirmidhi, Bukhari)

For this reason, it is preferable to say your prayers in jama`ah and to make dhikr in jama`ah, where veils are lifted up. By yourself you may not have the same eagerness to recite strongly so the veils will not be raised quickly, but in jama`ah Allah (swt) will take them away. Allah has described our hearts as big stones. Can you break a large stone with a hammer? No. What do you need? You need a bulldozer and jama`ah is like a bulldozer! When someone says “Allah” by himself it is like a tractor, but with a jama`ah it is like a bulldozer, paving the way. A group of people with one hammer can break a stone, but one person with the same hammer cannot.

May Allah (swt) make us break the stone of our hearts! He broke it for Sayyidina Musa (a) because he is Kaleemullah.

قَالَ رَبِّ أَرِنِي أَنظُرْ إِلَيْكَ قَالَ لَن تَرَانِي وَلَـكِنِ انظُرْ إِلَى الْجَبَلِ فَإِنِ اسْتَقَرَّ مَكَانَهُ فَسَوْفَ تَرَانِي فَلَمَّا تَجَلَّى رَبُّهُ لِلْجَبَلِ جَعَلَهُ دَكًّا وَخَرَّ موسَى صَعِقًا فَلَمَّا أَفَاقَ قَالَ سُبْحَانَكَ تُبْتُ إِلَيْكَ وَأَنَاْ أَوَّلُ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ

Qaala rabbee arinee anzhur ilayk, qaala lan taraanee wa laakin unzhur ila ’l-jabali, fa in istaqarrra makaanuhu fa-sawfa taraanee, fa lamaa tajalla rabbuhu li 'l-jabali ja`alahu dakkan wa kharra Moosaa sa`iqan, falamma aafaaqa qaala subhaanaka tubtu ilayk, wa anaa awwal al-mumineen.

He said, "O my Lord! Show Yourself to me, that I may look upon You." Allah said, "By no means can you see Me (directly), but look upon the mountain; if it abides in its place, then you shall see Me." When his Lord manifested His glory on the mount, He made it as dust, and Moses fell down in a swoon. When he recovered his senses, he said, "Glory be to You! To You I return in repentance, and I am the first to believe." (Surat al-`Araaf, 7:143)

Sayyidina Musa (a) perceived no boundaries and he unknowingly crossed the limits by saying, "Yaa Rabbee! I want to see You!"

Allah (swt) said, "You cannot see Me. How can you see Me on earth?"

Allah cannot be contained, everything is contained by Allah’s power, but Allah has no place! You cannot say He is this or that, or He is up or down. Allah (swt) has no place, no time, and no “where.”

Sayyidina Musa (a) said, "Let me see You."

Allah said, "Okay, I love you and will tell you what you need to do. Look at the mountain and I will manifest My Beautiful Names and Attributes on it. If the mountain stays in its place, then you can see Me."

When Allah (swt) manifested His Beautiful Names and Attributes, the mountain shattered to dust and Sayyidina Musa fainted, as the mountain was his ego! Allah (swt) manifested His Beautiful Names and Attributes on the heart of Sayyidina Musa, what Sayyidina Muhiyuddin ibn `Arabi (r) said was the mountain of egoism that was broken. Sayyidina Musa (a) was in a coma, Allah destroyed his power, and made him know nothing. When he repented he stood up, when Allah wanted him to come back. Our mountains, our egos are so huge and arrogant, and we are so proud of ourselves, but we have to be soft and humble, and in order to be humble we must come to such associations to remember Allah (swt) and His Prophet (s), and Allah will remember you in a place better than this.

أَنَا جَلِيْسُ مَنْ ذَكَرَنِي

Ana jaleesu man dhakaranee.

I sit with him who remembers Me. (Suyuti, Ahmad, Bayhaqi)

Mention Allah daily and you will find Him whenever you are in need.

Today we are going to Keighley and everyone is welcome. May Allah forgive us and you, and forgive everyone.

Wa min Allahi 't-tawfeeq, bi hurmati 'l-habeeb, bi hurmati 'l-Fatihah.


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