Allahumma salli `alaa Sayyidina Muhammad! Very good. You must be happy tonight is the start and tomorrow is the first of Rabi` al-Awwal. Allah brought us together in this precious night, and it is the month of Prophet (s). “Rabi`a” is spring, and Rabi` al-Awwal, “The First Spring.” Why not Rabi` at-Thaani? What is Rabi` at-Thaani, “The Second Spring?” We know there is only one spring. There is summer, fall, winter and spring; the last one is spring. But why did He say, “First Spring,” and, “Second Spring?” Now I don’t know, I am asking you? because as they are saying now, Mawlana is sending, and this is the first time I am saying this as I never heard it before. Now I am hearing it from Mawlana Shaykh, may Allah give him long life. First Spring is when everything becomes green; when everything becomes peaceful, when everything after death comes alive. So the First Spring is the Spring of Noor an-Nabi (s), because the light kills the dark. When the sun comes darkness disappears, when noor comes darkness goes.
They say, “Big Bang, a strong explosion happened.” If we agree with them, that explosion is the First Spring when Prophet (s) was noor bayna yadayillaah, between the Hand of Allah (swt). He said
لما أردت أن أخلق الخلق قبضت قبضة من نوري ، فقلت لها : كوني محمداً ، ثم خلقت من نور محمد كل الأشياء
Lamaa aradtu an akhluq al-khalqi qabadtu qabdatan min nooree fa qultu lahaa koonee Muhammada. thumma khalaqta min noori Muhammad kull al-ashyaa.
As it is said, “Allah took one handful from His Noor, from His Light and said to it, ‘Be Muhammad!’”
That is “The (first) Spring.” When that happened Big Bang happened! Big Bang is the beginning of understanding the universe.
So when Allah (swt) created the Light of Sayyidina Muhammad (s), the darkness that was in this universe, the gaseous state if we go into chemistry or physics, they say that it hit each other and it began to form into some kind of solid and molecules, and everything. But that is the Light of Muhammad, because Allah created from the Light of Prophet (s) all Creation; from Adam to mawjood, from non-existence to existence, the intermediary was the Light of Prophet (s). According to the hadith:
رواه عبد الرزاق بسنده عن جابر بن عبد الله بلفظ قال قلت: يا رسول الله، بأبي أنت وأمي، أخبرني عن أول شيء خلقه الله قبل الأشياء. قال: يا جابر، إن الله تعالى خلق قبل الأشياء نور نبيك من نوره،...
When Jaabir (r) asked, “Let my father and mother be sacrificed for you, oh Prophet of Allah! What is the first thing that Allah (swt) created?” the Prophet (s) said, “The first thing that Allah (swt) created is the Light of your Prophet from His Light, O Jaabir.” (Musannaf `Abdu ’r-Razzaq)
What Allah created first was the Light of Muhammad (s), and then He put that Light in Bahr al-Qudrah, “The Ocean of Power.” Al-Qaadir, al-Muqtadir, He put that Light there and it began to turn and as it turned it was generating energy. It means generating appearances in Bahr al-Qudrah that were hidden, that were not known because Allah (swt) is Azzal pre-Eternal, Abad post-Eternal. No one can be ilah except Allah (swt). He is the Creator and no one else can be Creator. Sayyidina Muhammad is `Abd.
So Creation comes from Allah, and appearances come from Bahr al-Qudrah, as the Noor is turning in Bahr al-Qudrah in a speed that no one knows. That is why atoms were created from Noor an-Nabi (s). That formed atom, as in the Periodic Table, forms every element that we know about. So inside the atom is another ocean and who made that ocean? There are electrons turning circumambulating around the mass forming different kind of atoms. When these atoms come together they form different substances. So when that Light was turning in Bahr al-Qudrah it was generating energy, generating power, and from that power appearances were coming because they are from that Light, Noor an-Nabi (s).
When Noor an-Nabi comes you can see; if there is no light in this room and it is Maghrib or `Ishaa you can’t see anything. If you put the light on, you can see everything. So there were no appearances because there was no light.
So when the Light came to Bahr al-Qudrah from that Light Allah created Creation; these appearances began to appear, and this Creation came into existence with Noor an-Nabi (s). That is why He says, “Huwa noor, he is noor.” We continue? Noor guides those who are confused. How does noor guide? If you came into this room and there is no light you are confused, where did they put it? But the noor will guide you to see where the switch is on and off. When you want to switch it “on”, and by iraada, “Will of Allah”, when He wants to switch that Light from the Light of Prophet (s), from his power these beautiful appearances came. From:
لَقَدْ أَحْصَاهُمْ وَعَدَّهُمْ عَدًّا
laqad ahsaahum wa `adahum `adaa
He does take an account of them (all), and hath numbered them (all) exactly. (Surat Maryam, 19:94)
Allah counted them and knew about them all at the same time, and Prophet (s) from that secret is able to know everything created, from his noor he knows it; it was part of his Light.
وإعلموا أن فيكم رسول الله
W`alamoo anna feekum rasoolullaah.
And know Allah's Messenger is in you. (Surat al-Hujuraat, 49:7)
“You must know that Muhammad, that noor is in you.” Everyone from Creation is from Ummati Muhammad (s); without that noor you don’t exist, you don’t appear. You are there and Allah is Khaliq, you are there but you cannot appear. Appearances have to be and Noor an-Nabi has to be there; that Light has to be there that Allah (swt) dressed him with as `Abd. We have to be careful here. He (s) is `Abd and Allah is Creator! But that `Abd has we say in Arabic, imtiaazaat, we don’t know the word in English, he has been distinguished; Allah gave him something better, fadl, Allah favoured him with special qualities. Not everyone has these qualities, only Sayyidina Muhammad (s)! These qualities are to make him dress his ummah and dress Creation and everyone, as he (s) said:
انما بعثت لاتمم مكارم الاخلاق
I have been sent to perfect the best of conduct (your behavior and character). (Bazzaar)
So that noor that Allah (swt) created and put in Bahr al-Qudrah became more noor, noorun `ala noor! Yahdillahi bi noorihi man yashaa, Allah will guide to His Light whom He likes. Here noor `ala noor, who is noorun `ala noor, “Light upon Light?” It is for Prophet (s). Allah is The Absolute Noor, He doesn't need to say “noor over noor;” noorun `ala noor, so that is for Prophet (s) from Allah’s Light. Allah is dressing His Servant from that secret. Yahdiya’Llaahu li-noorihi man yashaa, Allah will guide, li noori. There are two opinions on this: some scholars say li noorihi goes to Allah (swt) and some scholars say li noorihi goes to Prophet (s).
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
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)
So Allah guides whom He likes to the Light of Prophet (s), because the Light of Muhammad is like a magnet as anyone who approaches him accepts Islam. So Allah guides whom He likes to the Light of the Prophet (s). We have to be thankful, alhamdulillah wa shukrulillah to Allah (swt), that He created us from Ummat an-Nabi (s). He created Creation from the Light of Prophet (s) as it is mentioned in the hadith, but He favored him more than the others.
What did Sayyidina Muhiyyudin ibn `Arabi (q) say in his Futuhaat? He said, “Prophet (s) is the ‘mirror.’ The Creation which is in Bahr al-Qudrah, its appearance is still there and the appearance to the universe is only through the mirror of Muhammadun Rasoolullah; he is the mirror that everything can be seen through.” He goes more than that and he says, “Allah (swt) looks at one:”
إِنِّي جَاعِلٌ فِي الأَرْضِ خَلِيفَةً
Verily, I am making a deputy on Earth. (Surat al-Baqarah, 2:30)
“We have made on Earth Our Khalifah,” Allah made Prophet (s) His Khalifah on Earth. So Sayyidina Muhiyyudin ibn `Arabi (q) said that, “He (s) is the mirror that reflects all appearances in Bahr al-Qudrah, but those appearances are still in Bahr al-Qudrah, ‘The Ocean of Power,’ and are seen through the mirror. So when they show them, the reality is there but the image is here (on Earth).” The reality is in Bahr al-Qudrah; everyone’s reality is there, but the copy of that appearance comes through the mirror that reflects it. That is why it is said the heart has to be on the right side, not on the left, but because you are a ‘copy of the original’ it changed; like someone looking in the mirror, you see the right as left and the left as right.
So Prophet (s) is reflecting all kinds of appearances that are in Bahr al-Qudrah, in these realities. And what we are here are images. Awliya and why they become awliyaullah is because Allah gave them the opportunity, and to everyone, to connect with your reality. When the image connects with the reality it becomes part of the reality; it is opened, it merges, it goes back inside.
إِنَّا لِلّهِ وَإِنَّـا إِلَيْهِ رَاجِعونَ
To Allah we belong and to Him we return. (Surat al-Baqarah, 2:156)
That is the meaning of awliyaullah; that one who now has that inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi raji`oon, who can be mazhar haadhihi ’l-ayah, the appearance of this ayah, that you ‘die before death’. Prophet (s) said, “Anyone who wants to see someone who died before he died, look at Abu Bakr as-Siddiq. He has no iraada, no will, in complete submission like a dead person;” there is no movement, although he feels, he sees, he can hear but he connected with his reality. There are awliya who completely submit; when they submit to Allah (swt) they are like dead people, no irada for them. These people can connect with the realities, and that is why they are called ‘awliya’ because now there is like a pipeline between them in dunya and their reality in Bahr al-Qudrah. Those who cannot, like us, you are still an image; you cannot find your realities there. That is why a wali is not so much concerned in dunya as dunya dropped from his eyes. When are you awakened? Imam Ghazali (q) said, “The only time you are awake is when sand goes in your eyes.” It means when the soil goes into your eyes, at that time you can see the reality, either you are on the right side or you are on the left side; that reality will only be through death.
Everyone has two angels who come to question the deceased person, Ankar wa Nakeer, they come to ask there. Sayyidina `Ali’s son and Sayyidina `Umar’s son always argued with each other, “My father is better.” “No, my father is better.” They were young ones. Sayyidina `Ali was telling them, “Don’t say that, `Umar is better than me!” He was showing humbleness.
The story is that when Sayyidina `Umar (r) died, as for everyone, the two angels will come and ask,
“Who is your Lord?” Allah (swt). “Who is your prophet?” Sayyidina Muhammad (s). “What is your religion?” Islam. “What is your Holy Book?” The Holy Qur’an. If you say that, you are done with your part and if you don’t say that, you will be questioned. It is Allah’s Mercy on Ummat an-Nabi (s), by shafa`at an-Nabi they will go through to Paradise inshaa-Allah.
So they came to Sayyidina `Umar (r), and Sayyidina `Ali (r) was seeing them; they can see, they are not blind like us. Ankar and Nakeer came to Sayyidina `Umar (r) and asked, “Yaa `Umar, who is your Lord?” This is Grandshaykh’s story, may Allah bless his soul, of that particular event. “Who is your Lord?” Sayyidina `Umar said, “I cannot hear.” The angels approached and said, “Yaa `Umar who is your Lord?” Sayyidina `Umar said, “Really I cannot hear well, approach.” They approached as close as this (mureed sitting next to Mawlana) and said, “Who is your Lord?” Sayyidina `Umar said, “What is your question?” and he boxed them. So one of them got a black eye from that blow from Sayyidina `Umar. He said, “From what distance are you coming? I passed away and I came from my home five minutes ago, and you came from Heavens all the way to Earth, and I am coming from three or four meters away and you think I am going to forget? And you are coming from far away beyond the universe, you think you know? Take another one!”
Sayyidina `Ali was telling Sayyidina `Umar’s son, “This is brave! Who can dare do that?” Everyone shakes from Sayyidina Ankar and Sayyidina Nakeer.
One man from a village said to his son, “When I die I...because in the old times they used to have rooms under the ground and they would put the dead people from the same family. I would like that when you put me there, you take a small amount from this big amount of gold, and my will is you give that amount to anyone who comes with me for one night; anyone who stays with me one night in the grave for when Ankar and Nakeer come and ask me, I will see someone near me and I will feel okay.”
They said, “No problem,” according to their mind in the villages, they are simple people. After a while the father died.
So the boy asked everyone in the village, “Can anyone go and sit in that grave one night and I will give this gold that my father left?”
No one agreed except one very poor person who used to cut wood and sell it. He said, “W’allahi I will go, I accept.”
The son said, “Okay, I will put you down inside and lock it up, in the morning when I open I will give you the gold. Agreed?”
So the wood cutter went inside, and when everyone left Ankar and Nakeer came. They looked and there was one dead one and one alive, and they were discussing with each other and said, “Why do we have to question the deceased one? Let us get the alive one now before he leaves! In the morning he will be gone, so bring him here and ask him.”
They began to question him and what he had from dunya with him was a rope and an axe. Up until Fajr they were questioning him about his rope and axe and from where he got them. “Is this haraam or halaal money?” Every possible question in the mind of a human being they were asking that person who was alive, and for the dead one, it would be later as he was already dead.
So Fajr came and the son opened and the wood-cutter ran out from Ankar and Nakeer and they said, “Wait we haven't finished yet.” The son saw the wood cutter running and asked, “Where are you running? Here is your gold.” He said, “I don’t want it anymore. Keep your gold! All night I was questioned for a rope and an axe, and Ankar and Nakeer will question me about this gold for the rest of my life! I don’t want it. I will go to my Lord, Allah (swt).”
See how people are asked? This is a story from Grandshaykh (q) that happened in the village of Daghestan. We must have our love to Sayyidina Muhammad (s) who has given us something extraordinary. Through him Allah revealed the Holy Qur’an to us. Never these Ancient Words of Allah, Kalaamullahi ’l-Qadeem, were revealed to any of the prophets except to Sayyidina Muhammad (s). Allah gave because he can carry; he can carry all his ummah without fearing that the load is too much. Allah (swt) said:
وَوَضَعْنَا عَنكَ وِزْرَكَ
wa wada`naa `anka wizrak.
And We removed from you your burden. (Surat ash-Sharh, 94:2)
“That heavy load that you are carrying yaa Muhammad, the load of the ummah, their sins and their mistakes are on your shoulder.” Because he will stand in front of Allah on Judgement Day and say, “Yaa Rabbee, I will carry everything for my ummah, send them to Paradise.” Allah will accept and send them to Paradise! That is a famous hadith in Sahih Bukhari.
So noorun `ala noor, yahdiya’Llaahu li-noorihi man yashaa, every moment that we are sitting in a majlis of salaat `ala ’n- Nabi, it cannot be evaluated. The value of it is so tremendous in Allah’s Presence, if you make one salawaat, Allah makes ten salawaat on you. What do you think when you sit in a Mawlid an-Nabi and make tens of thousands of people happy?
I was in a majlis of Mawlid an-Nabi in Cirebon in Indonesia and I know that people came from 5:00 p.m. not to miss their place near the stage, and the rain, I never saw such rain. It was pouring very hard and no one left, eight or ten people fainted, but no one left; all of them were sitting and the water was up to their knees. It was a field, and imagine behind them the whole road was water, and they were sitting in water, men and women; one side was for women and one side for men, no one complained and no one left. If something like that happened people would leave.
I had a very famous musician there, Opic, and he said, “When I play music with my singers we can bring 100,000 people together, but if it rains like this no one will stay! I am amazed how these people are mesmerized, they are not moving and they are doing salawaat on Prophet (s)!” and the water was pouring. Alhamdulillah we were under cover on the stage.
We said, “Alhamdulillah it is not on us,” and suddenly it came, the water was everywhere! Some people said to me, “Come let us go,” but I said, “No I am waiting until the event is over.”
And the water began to pour. And this Habib Shaykh continuing and continuing with salawaat. And then Mawlana made ishaarah to them about the importance of rain, and this doesn’t happen: as I was explaining it stopped, and I was explaining more and it rained another time, and people never moved! That is the barakah of salaat `ala ’n-Nabi; that is barakah of the association, the barakah of the unity.
وَاعْتَصِمُواْ بِحَبْلِ اللّهِ جَمِيعًا وَلاَ تَفَرَّقُواْ
w`atasimoo bi-hablillaahi jamiyy`an wa laa tafaraqoo
Hold fast to Allah's rope and don't separate. (Surat Aali-`Imraan, 3:103)
Who is the rope, Allah’s Rope? Sayyidina Muhammad (s)! “Hold to him and you will reach, it is My Door.” Alhamdulillah when you are in unity, although there are differences: we do interfaith programs, is it not? How many different religions are there? Do we fight? No, we don’t fight. Why for intra-religious we fight? I don’t understand it. Until now, I ask scholars and speakers, “Why Muslim-to-Muslim we have to fight? Why when we do interfaith programs they are so sweet?” No answer. Be sweet with your brothers and be sweet with the others, it is okay! No, you want to fight with your brothers, saying, “shirk, bid`a, haraam, kufr,” and with others you are accepting their religion, there is no complaint! Okay, we don’t complain, so why are you complaining about us? In Islam there are 472 madhabs according to Muhammad Abu Zahra from al-Azhar University of Egypt; let them go and check it.
May Allah forgive us. Keep unity, keep together, then Allah will send more, He will give you more inshaa-Allah.
Wa min Allahi 't-tawfeeq, bi hurmati 'l-habeeb, bi hurmati 'l-Fatihah.
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