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The Power of Presenting Our Dhikr

to Sayyidina Shah Naqshband

Ramadan Series 2011, Volume 14

Mawlana Shaykh Hisham Kabbani

13 August 2011 London, UK

After Dhuhr Prayers at CSCA, Feltham

As-salaamu `alaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakaatuh.

There is a huge secret in the verse:

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. (an-Nisa, 4:59)

Grandshaykh (q) and Mawlana Shaykh Nazim, may Allah give him long life, said, “Anyone who recites that verse, when he says ‘ati`oollah, obey Allah,’ it will be as if he performed all his obligations and stopped committing forbiddens.” There is a secret there! Allah's Words are not like ours; our words are limited in meaning, but Allah's Words never end, as He said in the Holy Qur’an:

قُل لَّوْ كَانَ الْبَحْرُ مِدَادًا لِّكَلِمَاتِ رَبِّي لَنَفِدَ الْبَحْرُ قَبْلَ أَن تَنفَدَ كَلِمَاتُ رَبِّي وَلَوْ جِئْنَا بِمِثْلِهِ مَدَدًا

Qul law kaana ’l-bahru midaadan li-kalimaati rabbee la-nafida 'l-bahru qabla an tanfada kalimaatu rabbee wa law ji’naa bi-mithlihi madada.

Say (O Muhammad), "And if the oceans were ink and the trees pens, they would be used up before writing the Words of our Lord even if we added another ocean like it, for its aid." (Surat al-Kahf, 18:109)

If trees were pens and oceans were ink, first the wood would dissolve and the ink would finish as Allah's words will never end! There are around 300,000 words in the Holy Qur’an which, if you write them all they will finish, but here Allah (swt) is saying, “It doesn’t finish; only in your knowledge it is finished.” For example, if you read one juz of Holy Qur’an every day you will complete a full reading in thirty days; however, Allah (swt) is saying it doesn’t finish because the words have secrets. You may understand one meaning of a word, but that is not all the meanings. No one can swim in the ocean of Holy Qur’an and say it will finish, because Allah’s Ocean of Words will never end. This shows that there are meanings behind every letter in a word, and there are around 600,000 letters in the Holy Qur’an!

Grandshaykh `Abd-Allah al-Fa'iz ad-Daghestani (q) said, “For every letter of the Holy Qur'an, Allah (swt) opened 24,000 oceans of knowledge to His awliyaullah, and what He opened to one wali He did not open to another as He doesn’t duplicate, and all of Allah's Words are within the ayah, ati`ullaha wa ati`u 'r-Rasoola wa ooli 'l-amri minkum, “Obey Allah, obey the Prophet, and obey those in authority among you.”

The Prophet (s) said:

يس قلب القرآن

YaSeen qalb al-qur’an.

(Surah) YaSeen is the heart of Qur’an. (al-Tirmidhi)

That means Muhammad (s) is the heart of Qur’an as “YaSeen” is Muhammad (s)!

Allah (swt) said:

يس. والقُرْآنِ الحَكِيمِ

Yaseen wal qur’ani ’l-hakeem.

YaSeen and the wise Qur'an. (YaSeen, 36:1-2)

By saying, “YaSeen and the Qur’an,” Allah is making `ataf, putting one sentence over the other. Allah (swt) gave greatness to Prophet (s) here, as it is, “him (s) and the Holy Qur’an!” That’s why, it is said that YaSeen, Sayyidina Muhammad, is the heart of Qur’an and al-Fatihah is the heart of Muhammad (s)! If you don’t recite the seven verses of Surat al-Fatihah in your prayer, it is not accepted. If you recite Surat al-Fatihah alone, with no ayah or surah after, your prayer will still be valid, but not without it. This means, your prayer is accepted when you acknowledge/include “the heart of Prophet (s),” which is always radiant in every prayer!

So when Allah (swt) says, “My Words never end,” it means for every word of Holy Qur’an there are endless interpretations and secrets. So if you add all awliyaullah’s knowledge from the time of Sayyidina Abu Bakr (r), Sayyidina `Umar (r), Sayyidina Usmaan (r), Sayyidina `Ali (r), and all awliyaullah up to Mawlana Shaykh Nazim (q), including all branches of the Naqshbandi Order and other tariqahs, and all the 124,000 awliyaullah, of which 7007 are Naqshbandi and the rest are from different tariqahs, it would not come to the meaning of a single word in the Holy Qur’an! There are many awliyaullah, but not all are on the same highway. In spirituality, there is discipline. Every wali is on his own highway with his followers, so don’t jump from one wali to another! All are taking from the Prophet (s) as it is said, wa kullu min rasoolullah multamisan, “All are taking from that flow of knowledge coming from Prophet (s).”

Evenwith all that accumulated knowledge they will still not say, "We know,” because there is yet more! For example, if you go to a bookstore and search for books on Islamic spirituality, you can find thousands of books from all around the world, and if all of these were put together, it would not be a drop of that ocean, as Grandshaykh (q) and Mawlana Shaykh Nazim (q) said, “Only Allah knows whatever knowledge Allah (swt) gave to Prophet (s).” It is not but one drop of the knowledge He is giving to Prophet (s) in every moment! The Holy Qur’an is the Word of Allah (swt), so no one can truly understand it as that complete knowledge is only for Prophet (s) and awliyaullah can only know what is given to their hearts by Prophet (s), not more. They stand at the shore of the Ocean of Knowledge, the Ocean of Prophet (s), hayaaran, stunned and astonished.

This is Grandshaykh (q)'s story. Once Sayyidina Abu Yazid al-Bistami (q) was in the association of awliyaullah. Some awliyaullah remain in the presence of Prophet (s), and some are given one minute, or one or two hours in that presence, depending on how much they can receive. So Grandshaykh (q) said, “In the association of the grand awliyaullah with Prophet (s) and the Sahaabah (r), with permission of Prophet (s), Sayyidina Abu Yazid al-Bistami (q) addressed all the other awliya.” What we are speaking of is a spiritual vision, kashf.

In the hadeeth of Prophet (s), Allah (swt) said:

ولا يزال عبدي يتقرب إلي بالنوافل حتى أحبه، فإذا أحببته كنت سمعه الذي يسمع به وبصره الذي

يبصربه، ويده التي يبطش بها ورجله التي يمشي بها،

Wa laa yazaala `abdee yataqarabu ilayya bi’ n-nawaafil hatta uhibbah. Fa idha ahbabtahu kuntu sama`uhulladhee yasma`u bihi wa basarahulladhee yubsiru bihi wa yadahulladhee yabtishu bihaa wa rijlahullatee yamshee bihaa.

My servant does not cease to approach Me through voluntary worship until I will love him. When I love him, I will become the ears with which he hears, the eyes with which he sees the hand with which he acts, and the legs with which he walks (and other versions include, “and the tongue with which he speaks.”) (Hadith Qudsee, Bukhari)

Awliyaullah can see with the light that Allah gave to them. So in that kashf, Sayyidina Abu Yazid al-Bistami (q) said, “I have a comment.” Awliyaullah can complain or make comments, but not all of them do, as some choose to surrender and don’t say anything; they listen, and when an order comes from Prophet (s) they follow it. He said, "When all the mureeds of the Naqshbandi Tariqah perform the Ihda, “Why do they say, ‘khaassatan, especially to Shah Naqshband?’ If they give me that Ihda and say, ‘especially to Bayazid al-Bistami,’ I will put them on the shore of that ocean, as I have the power!”

Look how strong that Ihda is! They carry you to the shore of the Ocean of Knowledge, where Prophet (s) is! Abu Yazid al-Bistami (q) said, “If they say, ‘ila ruhi imami-t-tariqah wa ghawthi 'l-khaliqat Abu Yazid Bayazid al-Bistami, (grant the reward of what we have read) in particular to the soul of the imam of the tariqah and arch-Intercessor of the created world, Abu Yazid Bayazid al-Bistami,’ I will take them to that shore where no one can reach, where I am standing, waiting for them!" Then one wali asked permission to speak in the spiritual presence of Prophet (s), and I have no permission to mention his name, but he said, "Yaa Sayyidee, yaa Bayazid! Yes, you can put them on that shore, but you are saying this because you are not seeing Shah Naqshband on the other side of that shore. Of course if someone is not there, how can he put his mureeds there? But Shah Bahauddin Naqshband is already on the other shore, putting them all there! With the Prophet's blessings, he crossed that ocean of sainthood and placed his mureeds on the other side, where they are “ready-made” Naqshbandis--ready, as if that whole ocean had been poured into their hearts!” And this is true for every time you read the Ihda!

Sayyidina Shah Naqshband (q) and awliyaullah are able to take their followers to where they are, and not every wali can do this, as it is a specialty Allah (swt) gives to some of His awliyaullah. With all our respect to awliyaullah, this is how it works. Some of them have been chosen to speak, like Bayazid al-Bistami, who made lots of da`wah. Some awliya don’t speak; you sit with them, they make dhikr and that’s it, but they might be stronger.

One of the grandshaykhs of the Naqshbandi Tariqah, Sayyidina Abu Ahmad as-Sughuri (q) said, “If I had the tongue of Sayyidina Jamaluddin al-Ghumuqi al-Husayni (q), I could have made everyone Muslim!” This means, he was not given permission to bring out knowledge from the heart to the tongue. If that is for the tongue, then what do you think is in the heart? They have many things to say but they are not allowed. From one wali to another power will increase. That is not to humiliate the other awliyaullah, but this is how it works, because in every moment Prophet (s) is in ascension and many different knowledges come.

In fiqh, Islamic jurisprudence, Prophet (s) relates a hadith, but after a few days or week he relates the same hadith in a different way, because when he is in ascension he relates that same hadith from the different levels he is in, so it changes. Similarly, there are changes according to the ascensions of awliyaullah; they change whatever they see or are ordered to do, whether you like it or not. So we have to say, sami`na wa ata`naa, “We hear and we obey.” You cannot say, “I heard it but I don’t want to obey.” You must obey and accept; if you accept, you might be raised higher because their words are tests for everyone and there are many hidden things in their words.

That wali said, “Shah Naqshband is putting them on the other shore.” This means, Shah Naqshband (q) is taking all these secrets Allah (swt) is giving him from one shore to another! Sayyidina Bayazid al-Bistami (q) took these secrets to his shore, then from his shore to the second begins all the other shores of awliyaullah until they come to Shah Naqshband (q). What then do you think of Grandshaykh `Abdullah al-Fa'iz ad-Daghestani (q), as all these secrets have come to him, and now to Mawlana Shaykh Nazim (q)!

Everything is in ascension. We are also in ascension, as our hearts are constantly being uploaded with new knowledge, but you need a password. Today, they cannot open something without a password. Awliyaullah are always uploading and giving, even if you are not sitting with them, as Prophet (s) said:

لي ساعت مع الله و لي ساعت مع الخلق

Lee sa`atun ma` Allah wa sa`atun ma` al-khalq.

I have one hour in the Divine Presence and one hour with the Creation.

In another hadeeth that differs slightly, he said:

لي وجه مع الله و لي وجه مع الخلق

Lee wajhun ma` Allah wa wajhun ma` al-khalq.

I have one face in the Divine Presence and one face with the Creation.

So awliyaullah are inheriting these secrets from the Prophet (s) and they are with their followers, regardless of what the followers do. Even if the mureed is at a disco, they can reach him and upload to his heart and they will never stop uploading because they know that one day he will return to his senses, repent, and come to find all those knowledges waiting for him, because he extended his hand to his shaykh to take baya’. That baya` is connected, so he is chained! They let you go as much as you like, even if you don’t come back, because eventually on the last seven breaths you will come back, as they will be present with you. Many mureeds leave their `ahd, promise or contract with their shaykh, but they cannot change what has been written, that they are going to be with that wali. Even if they leave the wali and go back to dunya, they are still under his name. But if someone is lazy, what can we do?

So that is how they are able to reach and upload to your heart, but with what? That ocean is full of knowledge because awliyaullah are taking from the words of Holy Qur’an. Oceans will finish but Allah’s Word will never finish, which means the secrets of the words will never finish; one word from Holy Qur’an can drown the whole universe, which is not even a drop in the ocean of that word! Allah (swt) is al-Khaliq, “The Creator,” and al-`Alim, “The Knower.” Al-Khaliq means, “creating in every moment with no limits.” You cannot limit the Greatness of Allah (swt); it is unlimited! As soon as He wills to create, Creation occurs in every moment with no limits, and there is no way of knowing its beginning or its end.

This universe is moving in space. To give an example, we will go along with what the scientists say, that since the ‘Big Bang’ billions of years have passed, but it is not as they say for we have many proofs that refute it. Since then this whole universe, with its 6000 galaxies each consisting of 80 billion stars, is moving in a vacuum at a speed of 300,000 km per second, non-stop up to this moment. No one knows where it is moving as there is no direction in space. How is this universe moving in a vacuum with no air, while here on this small planet there is air for us to breath? Look at Allah's Greatness! Allah (swt) wants to show you, “On the smallest planet I created, I gave all this life. O human beings! Don’t you think that I have other Creations much bigger and much greater?’ Allah (swt) made all of that to be under the authority of Prophet (s). Do you see the greatness of the Prophet (s)?

So in every moment, the Greatness of the Creator, al-Khaliq, is shown through His Creation, and we didn't speak of angels yet. The creation of angels is not like the creation of human beings in that we have limited reproduction capability of six or seven children, but their capability is unlimited. Allah creates angels in every moment that are completely different from the ones before; they neither look alike nor do they make the same tasbeeh. Their hamd, tahleel, takbeer, and tasbeeh are entirely different from any other angel, as all are different. The angels of glorification will never repeat the same tasbeeh; for example, if the same angel says “subhaan-Allah,” the next moment he might say, “Allahu Akbar.” Allah knows what words He gives them to recite, like words in Holy Qur’an that no one knows their meaning: “Alif. Laam. Meem,” “Qaaf. Haa. Yaa. `Ayn. Saad,” “Haa. Meem. `Ayn. Seen. Qaaf,” and so on.

So the guidance of shuyukh is important, because they encourage you to have more love for Allah (swt), for His Prophet (s), and for your guide. That is why all knowledges are embedded in that ayah:

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. (an-Nisa, 4:59)

If you recite this verse one-hundred times a day, you will benefit, as if you worshipped Allah (swt) every day with complete i`taat, obedience to Him and to His Prophet (s)! May Allah forgive us and bless this association. We thank everyone who came here. This place is for everyone.

May Allah (swt) give Mawlana Shaykh Nazim al-Haqqani long life and give all of you long life.

Bi hurmati 'l-habeeb, bi hurmati 'l-Fatihah.