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The Power of The Pen: Creativity and Spirituality in Islam

Mawlana Shaykh Hisham Kabbani

10 April 2015 London, UK

SOAS University

As-salaamu` alaykum wa rahmatullaahi wa barakaatuhu. Alhamdulillahi Rabbi ‘l-`aalameen wa ’s-salaatu wa ’s-salaamu `alaa ashrafi ‘l-mursaleen sayyidinaa wa nabiyyinaa Muhammadin wa `alaa aalihi wa sahbihi ajma`een. Huwa ‘l-habeeb al-Mustafa, huwa Sayyiduna wa Habeebuna Muhammad (s), yaa ayyuha ‘l-mushtaqoona noora jamaalihi salloo `alayhi wa sallimoo taslimah.

I would like first to thank Pearls of Islam for what they are doing, please tell them. When I saw the title, “The Power of the Pen”, I said I am not going to speak about this issue because it is not something everyone can understand, and I don’t understand also. Who is the ‘power’ behind the pen? That is the part that makes your mind think.

I heard from my teacher a sign ‘go and teach about it.’ That Pen was mentioned by Allah in many verses in the Holy Qur’an and in the first revelation, where He said “Iqra!” Jibreel came and asked Prophet (s) to read, and Prophet said, “What do I have to read?” because everything you see is made up of a circle of a point; everything we write, if you bring it back to its origin, is a point. If you want to write Alif, it is a point, and then another point and another point and another point and another point and another point, like small circles forming a letter. What do these circles carry of heavenly knowledge which you see as only a circle or a point, but in reality are each an immense universe that no one can understand except those whom Allah (swt) has chosen?

He chose His Beloved One to understand and to know that through his heavenly Ascension, where he reached Qaaba Qawsayni aw Adnaa, so near the main circle of knowledge, the main waterfall of knowledge, where he met (with the Divine Presence) and he knew the secret of what Allah (swt) has given to The Pen to write, because he said, “I have learned the Knowledge of Before and Knowledge of After, `Uloom al-Awwaleen wa ‘l-Akhireen.” Those knowledges have been written by Allah’s order to the Pen, when Allah created first the Light of Muhammad. He ordered the Pen to write the first writing, first heavenly knowledge, the first declaration to universes, to all the galaxies, to anyone living anywhere, to write “Laa ilaaha illa-Llah” and the Pen wrote Laa ilaaha illa-Llah for 70,000 light years, and in a heavenly year every day is like 50,000 days or like 1,000 days in some places. It wrote, “Laa ilaaha illa-Llah” and stopped in Maqaam at-Tawheed.

We are entering and diving in Maqaam at-Tawheed, where everything comes from one origin, which is Laa ilaaha illa-Llah. From Alif. Laam. Meem., what can we understand? There are tafseers, some of which are guessing, but in reality what Allah first asked the Pen to write in Maqaam al-Tawheed is “Allah”, Laa ilaaha illa-Llah. Maqaam al-`Uboodiyyah, the Level of Servanthood.

He ordered the Pen to write.

The Pen said, “What should I write now?”

He (swt) said, “Muhammadun Rasoolullah.”

The Pen stopped, adaban, out of respect (thinking to itself), “How can I write “Muhammad Rasoolullah” beside Laa ilaaha illa Llah?” It stopped.

Allah said to the Pen, "Write Muhammadun rasoolullah", and look how much Allah had patience with the Ummah of Rasoolullah (s) as Allah did not destroy it when the Pen did not want to write! When Shaytan did not do sajda for Adam, He cursed him, but He did not curse the Pen when the Pen stopped. The Pen is also created.

The Pen said, “Who is Muhammad, that I should write his name beside Your Name?”

The answer came. Allah said, “Have adab, O Pen! Have respect for My Creation! Don’t answer. You are `abd and I am the Creator! Write ‘Muhammad Rasoolullah’!”

And the Pen wrote Muhammadun Rasoolullah. Who is that Pen Allah has mentioned in many places?

ن ۚ وَالْقَلَمِ وَمَا يَسْطُرُونَ

Noon, by the Pen and what they (angels) inscribe. (Surat al-Qalam, 68:1)

ٱقۡرَأۡ وَرَبُّكَ ٱلۡأَكۡرَمُ ٱلَّذِى عَلَّمَ بِٱلۡقَلَمِ عَلَّمَ ٱلۡإِنسَـٰنَ مَا لَمۡ يَعۡلَمۡ

Read! And your Lord is The Most Bountiful, The One Who taught Man by the Pen, taught Man what we did not know. (Surat al-Alaq, 96:3-5)

“He taught by the Pen.” What did He teach by the pen? That science which is in front of us. It takes you up to 32,000 feet up or down, left or right; it is a circle. If it goes more the whole space shuttle will disappear, disintegrate, but Prophet (s) went to Qaaba Qawsayni aw Adnaa and came back and he was healthy, and if we go up a mountain we are dizzy. Prophet went to Qaaba Qawsayni aw Adnaa healthy. Who is that Pen? Prophet (s) said:

أعطيت جوامع الكلم

I have been given all the words. (Muslim)

“Allah gave to me the mother of meanings”, which is `Uloom al-Awwaleen wa ‘l-Akhireen, and Prophet (s) doesn’t know how to write? Can you imagine that? But he did not write, not because he doesn’t know how, but Allah wants to honor him by people knowing that no one will enter Paradise without Sayyidina Muhammad’s (s) Intercession! He wants to honor him in front of everyone!

ادم ومن دونه تحت لوائي يوم القيامة

Adam and whoever is below him will be under my banner on the Day of Judgement. (Tirmidhi)

انا سيد ولد ادم ولا فخر

I am the master of the Children of Adam and I say this with no pride.

All this honor and he doesn’t know how to write? He knows, because he is the Pen! He is Qalam al-Qudra, the Pen of Power, al-Qaadir, al-Muqtadir! Allah (swt) is honoring His Prophet until the Day of Judgement, after judging His human beings!

فَمَن يَعْمَلْ مِثْقَالَ ذَرَّةٍ خَيْرًا يَرَه ُُ وَمَن يَعْمَلْ مِثْقَالَ ذَرَّةٍ شَرًّا يَرَ

Whosoever has done an atom's weight of good shall see it and whosoever has done an atom's weight of evil shall see it. (Surat al-Zalzalah, 99:7-8)

“Whoever does an atom of good will see good,whoever does an atom of bad will see bad,” and as all `ulama, Muslim and other scholars around the world [agree], no one can deny that expression of Prophet (s), that Allah will give Prophet (s) the Pen to decide who goes to Heaven and who goes to Hell. At that time he carries the Pen, only then, as Allah does not want him to carry the Pen in dunya! He kept his (s) hand clean, only Revelation was coming. That is why when Sayyidina Abu Bakr (r) was asked to compile the Holy Qur’an, he said, “No, Prophet did not do it so I will not do it,” because he knew that secret. Sayyidina `Uthman (r) was asked to compile it and he did, as that secret was for Sayyidina Abu Bakr as-Siddiq (r).

O Muslims! How many letters are there in the Holy Qur’an? The Pen wrote 6666 ayats in Holy Qur’an and if you open a Qur’an you can count them, but there is a secret in them. Allah created Heavens and Earth in how many days?

وَهُوَ الَّذِي خَلَق السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضَ فِي سِتَّةِ أَيَّامٍ

And it is He Who created the Heavens and the Earth in six days. (Surat Hud, 11:7)

Allah created Heaven and Earth in six days. The Pen wrote wrote 6,666 in six. Who can write like what the Pen wrote? We all have pens; lawyers and accountants have many pens, but one Pen wrote what no one was able to write. I will cut it short, because the time is running. Can you add 6,666? 6+6+6+6 = 24 and 2+4 = 6. Allah created the Heavens and Earth in six days, which means the number “6” has a hidden knowledge of the creation of Heavens and Earth; there is a knowledge of everything, being hidden there.

There are 114 surahs in Holy Qur’an, 1+1+4 = 6. What is that? Who can know then? Allah said in Holy Qur’an, first after you read the Fatihah is, “Alif. Laam. Meem.” Does it have a meaning or we don’t know the meaning? The whole, al-wajood kulli, the total existence of every knowledge, is in that! It is an ayah, it is connected and it is in that “Alif. Laam. Meem.” Alif is lil wujood al-mutlaq, “The Absolute Existence”, which is Allah. Laam is the message from Allah to Muhammad (s), the knowledge of the Pen, the knowledge that is with Jibreel (a). The Meem is Muhammad (s). When you say “Meem” you are saying two Meems, and between them is the Yaa, no longer one letter, it is three letters, Meem. Yaa. Meem. So what is in that Meem? There is one Meem facing Jibreel (a) and one Meem facing the Ummah.

That is why I didn’t want to explain this topic, but the organizers asked about the Power of the Pen. The Meem facing Jibreel (a) received wahiyy from Jibreel and that goes in the Yaa. The last letter in the Arabic alphabet, Yaa, is like Alif, so it as if you said. “Meem, Alif, Meem.” Alif is the letter of Allah (swt), so what Allah wants from Prophet (s) is to receive: Jibreel receives from Allah and gives to Prophet (s). Prophet hides what He wants to hide of knowledge in Alif and shows what He wants in the last Meem. That’s why no one heard the [real] Holy Qur’an except Prophet (s): everyone else heard it from the Prophet (s) or the Sahaabah (r), but no one heard the Revelation except for Muhammad (s).

That is why no one knows what Allah revealed except Prophet (s), because no one can carry it! Like a lightbulb: you use a generator to take energy from the power station and it brings reduced energy so as not to burn the lamps. Everyone takes what he can carry: if you want this much, you can take this much. So Prophet reduced (what he received from Allah) to what our hearts can carry, and not everyone is the same.

لاَ يُكَلِّفُ اللّهُ نَفْسًا إِلاَّ وُسْعَهَا لَهَا مَا كَسَبَتْ وَعَلَيْهَا مَا اكْتَسَبَتْ

On no soul does Allah place a burden greater than it can bear. (Surat al-Baqarah, 2:286)

Not everyone is burdened with the same, we can carry this much, we take this much, and still we are within that number and that circle. When we go out from that circle, imagine when Prophet (s) went out of the circle he reached Qaaba Qawsayni aw Adnaa! Awliyullah and `Ulama, the good scholars who according to their levels can reach out and ascend, can go out of that circle. If you sit in a box with holes, you will see so many rays of light coming. Every person has a special ray within that box, but when you take away the box you reach the whole marifaa’, the entire knowledge of Allah!

I think this is enough as they have to empty the room now. May Allah (swt) teach us and open our hearts to spiritual knowledge. I don’t call it spiritual knowledge; we say that for people to understand, but actually we call it Marifat al-Haqq. Ibn Ajeeba (r), a famous scholar, referred to it as al-`ilmu `ilmaan `ilmu l-awraaq wa `ilmu l-adhwaaq, Knowledge of Books and Knowledge of Taste. We are in a university that carries a lot of books, but when Allah opens for you the Knowledge of Taste you will see miracles! May Allah (swt) open for us that knowledge for the sake of Sayyidina Muhammad (s)!

Wa min Allahi ‘t-tawfeeq bi hurmati ‘l-Fatihah.


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