Category Archives: Islamic Articles.

BREAKING NEWS – PUTIN EXPOSES OBAMA’S PAID ISIS MERCENARIES IN MIDDLE EAST AND SYRIA!

THE MARSHALL REPORT

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UPDATED OCTOBER 3, 2015

In a press conference at the Valdai Discussion Club 2014 in answer to a question to a United States Journalist, President Vladimir Putin addressed his concerns regarding the US and their role in the middle east and ISIS. Although the film footage of the press conference has been banned, Live leaks released a copy of the press conference to the public. The words of Putin are transcribed below word for word from the video originally provided by  Inessa S.

The press and mainstream news has been avoiding this information. It is a scathing , diplomatic account of Russia’s position on the politic behavior and actions in the middle east regarding Syria and ISIS, as well as a reprimand to our press who have failed to do their job.

Putin’s complete oration to the US Journalists:

First point. I never said that I view the US as a threat to our…

View original post 1,017 more words

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TAZKIYA (PURIFICATION OF THE SOUL) – QUOTES, ARTICLES AND ANECDOTES

TAZKIYA (PURIFICATION OF THE SOUL) – QUOTES, ARTICLES AND ANECDOTES

Extracts from speeches and writings of Scholars on Islamic Spirituality and Purification of the Soul!

The most blessed Qalb which got the highest expansion and elevation

-Dr. Rafiq Ahmed

In the human history the most blessed Qalb which Allah Ta’ala selected for the highest purification, expansion and elevation was that of Muhammad-ur-Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam).

Allah Ta’ala says in the Qur’ân:

أَلَمْ نَشْرَحْ لَكَ صَدْرَكَ

“Have We not expanded thee thy breast?”. ( 94:1)

The breast is symbolically the seat of knowledge and the highest feelings of love and affection. It is the treasure house in which are stored the jewels of that quality of human character, which is divine. The Holy Prophet’s (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) human nature had been purified, expanded and elevated, so that he became the mercy for all the creation.

The Qalb of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) which is the most blessed got the highest Divine Light and he utilised the capabilities of Qalb to its maximum. All the latent faculties of Qalb got the highest illumination by the Divine Light and thus Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) attained the highest spiritual understanding and nearness to the ultimate Reality.

The Qur’ân is the Attribute of Allah Ta’ala and that the Attributes of Allah Ta’ala are immense and ultimate. Nothing in this universe had the capability of receiving this Divine Revelation. The Qalbs of all the men except that of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) could not attain this spiritual height which was necessary for being capable of receiving this divine revelation i.e., the Qur’ân. The Qalb of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) being the most blessed had this capability. It is said that if Allah Ta’ala would have sent this revelation directly to this universe, it would have got burnt down to ashes.

Allah Ta’ala had decided to express His divine revelation, He created this capability in the most blessed Qalb of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam).

Allah Ta’ala refers to this the most blessed Qalb of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) as follows:

وَإِنَّهُ لَتَنْزِيلُ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ () نَزَلَ بِهِ الرُّوحُ الْأَمِينُ () عَلَى قَلْبِكَ لِتَكُونَ مِنَ الْمُنْذِرِينَ ()

“Verily this is a revelation from the Lord of the worlds. With it came down the truthful spirit To thy heart that thou mayest admonish.” (26:192-194)

Qalb signifies not only the seat of affection, but also seat of memory and understanding. The process of inspiration is indicated by the impression of the divine message on the inspired one’s heart, memory and understanding from which it was promulgated in human speech to the world.

It is said that Jalaal of the Divine Revelation was tolerated and absorbed by the Qalb of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) which alone is the most blessed and when it was expressed through the blessed tongue of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) it is was Jamaal only, which the rest of the humanity and this universe could tolerate.

 The Seal of Prophethood

The humanity reached its peak in the most distinguished self of Muhammad (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam). The Divine Light and knowledge was attained to its maximum possible limit by him. In other words, the quintessence of all the creation was achieved. Every Messenger of Allah Ta’ala was predominantly the seat of expression of one of the Attributes of Allah Ta’ala, but the greatest and the last Messenger of Allah Ta’ala, Muhammad (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) was the seat of the expression of all the Attributes of Allah Ta’ala . This way he completed the chain of Messengers and put a seal on the Prophethood. He utilised the faculties of Qalb to the utmost and got the Divine Light of the highest degree. He received the Divine revelation—the Qur’ân, therefore, no room was left for any other person to go higher than this and no deficiency was left in the level of knowledge that could be achieved by any human being.

Allah Ta’ala certifies this seal of prophethood by Muhammad (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) in the Qur’ân as:

مَا كَانَ مُحَمَّدٌ أَبَا أَحَدٍ مِنْ رِجَالِكُمْ وَلَكِنْ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ وَخَاتَمَ النَّبِيِّينَ وَكَانَ اللَّهُ بِكُلِّ شَيْءٍ عَلِيمًا

“Muhammad is not the father of any of your men, but (he is) the Messenger of Allah Ta’ala and the seal of prophets and Allah Ta’ala has full knowledge of all things”. (33:40)

Latent Qualities of a Man’s Qalb-Dr. Rafiq Ahmed

Allah Ta’ala says

وَإِذْ أَخَذَ رَبُّكَ مِنْ بَنِي آدَمَ مِنْ ظُهُورِهِمْ ذُرِّيَّتَهُمْ وَأَشْهَدَهُمْ عَلَى أَنْفُسِهِمْ ألَسْتُ بِرَبِّكُمْ قَالُوا بَلَى شَهِدْنَا أَنْ تَقُولُوا يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ إِنَّا كُنَّا عَنْ هَذَا غَافِلِينَ

“When thy Lord drew forth from the children of Adam from their loins-their descendants and made them testify concerning themselves (Saying)”Am I not your lord (Who cherishes and sustains you) ? They said: Yea! We do testify (this) lest Ye should say on the Day of Judgment of this we were never mindful.” (7:172)

This verse provides an ample evidence of the fact that Allah Ta’ala has inculcated in the genes of a man the capacity necessary to recognize the Oneness of Allah Ta’ala, His supreme authority and the only Sustainer and Cherisher of the World. It is only after this highest spiritual capability given to Adam and his sons that Allah Ta’ala asked them to testify this.

There have been great men in the Islamic history like Zunun-Misri (RA) etc. who vividly recollected this day of covenant as if it had happened just that day itself. Zunun-Misri (RA), when asked if he remembered the covenant used to say:

“The scene of that Covenant is still in front of my eyes, the sound of those words is still ringing in my ears as if it has happened today itself.”

Since man, with all his excellences, is forgetful as well, so Allah Ta’ala sent His Messengers (AS) to this world to remind the mankind of this covenant which is already in its genes. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said in a hadith:

“every child is born on the nature of Islam. His parents make him Jew, Christian or worshiper of fire”. (Bukhâri & Muslim Sharief)

The latent qualities of man’s Qalb in the light and darkness

Allah Ta’ala says in the Qur’ân:

أَفَمَنْ شَرَحَ اللَّهُ صَدْرَهُ لِلْإِسْلَامِ فَهُوَ عَلَى نُورٍ مِنْ رَبِّهِ فَوَيْلٌ لِلْقَاسِيَةِ قُلُوبُهُمْ مِنْ ذِكْرِ اللَّهِ أُولَئِكَ فِي ضَلَالٍ مُبِينٍ

“Is one whose heart Allah Ta’ala has opened to Islam, so that he received light from Allah Ta’ala. (No better than one hard hearted)? Woe to those whose hearts are hardened against the remembrance, of Allah Ta’ala! They are manifestly wandering (in error)”. (39:22)

It  is patently clear that knowledge of these things has been given to man and that he has been selected for the expression of all the Attributes of Allah Ta’ala and thus we have also come to know that man was busy in Mushahidah Haq in  Aalam-i-Arwah and that he has recognised and testified that Allah Ta’ala is his Sustainer, his Cherisher and One and the Only one Lord worth worshipping. When man is born and comes to this universe, these all qualities remain latent or concealed in him. In the verses of the Qur’ân quoted above, (Is one whose heart Allah Ta’ala has opened to Islam, so that he has received light from Allah Ta’ala? Allah Ta’ala again refers to these qualities of heart (Qalb). Those who receive the Divine Light, their latent qualities of Qalb get awakened and enlightened and thus become manifested. Their Qalb starts functioning in the presence of this Divine Light and becomes Muslim i.e., they understand the Qur’ân and recognise their Creator, Sustainer and Cherisher, Allah Ta’ala the Almighty and the Exalted.

Those who do not receive this Divine Light,  their latent qualities of Qalb do not get manifested, they remain in darkness and in the process their Qalb fails to function and hence neither understand the Qur’ân nor recognise their Creator, Sustainer, Cherisher, Allah Ta’ala the Almighty and the Exalted. Allah Ta’ala calls these hearts as hardened. They remain in darkness and fail to expand their spiritual understanding and to receive Allah Ta’ala’s Light. They travel in opposite direction. Just as there is spiritual progress for those who seek Allah Ta’ala, on the other hand there is more and more spiritual retrogression for those who close their hearts to Allah Ta’ala. Their hearts get hardened, and they allow less and less Allah Ta’ala’s Grace to penetrate within. But it is obvious that they flounder on the way and cannot walk with the firm steps of those whose hearts abound in faith.

It is, therefore, well said: Hardened hearts are the most hated things near Allah Ta’ala. Allah Ta’ala taught us this Dua in the Qur’ân:

رَبَّنَا لَا تُزِغْ قُلُوبَنَا بَعْدَ إِذْ هَدَيْتَنَا وَهَبْ لَنَا مِنْ لَدُنْكَ رَحْمَةً إِنَّكَ أَنْتَ الْوَهَّابُ

“O Lord! they say, let not our hearts deviate. Now after Thou has guided us, But grant us mercy from Thee. For Thou art the grantor of bounties without measure.” (3:8)

What is Qalb?-part 2

What is Qalb?-part 2
Allah Ta’ala invited His beloved Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) to the highest point of humanity, the highest peak which was possible for a human being to reach but which was possible only for the greatest of the greats i.e., our beloved Prophet Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam). This was the highest status which is commonly known as Mairaj (Rasulullah’s (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) midnight ascension). The capability given to the human heart (Qalb) was utilized to its maximum by the sacred Qalb-i-Mubarak of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) for knowing the Ultimate Reality—the Almighty Allah Ta’ala. When Allah Ta’ala mentioned this highest achievement of man, He again used the word ‘Heart’.

مَا كَذَبَ الْفُؤَادُ مَا رَأَى

“The (Prophet’s) heart in no way falsified that which he saw.” (53:11)

This again indicates that the highest perception of the ultimate Reality i.e., Allah Ta’ala was achieved again by the same instrument i.e., Qalb. In the another Qur’ânic verse, Allah Ta’ala says:

إِنَّ فِي ذَلِكَ لَذِكْرَى لِمَنْ كَانَ لَهُ قَلْبٌ أَوْ أَلْقَى السَّمْعَ وَهُوَ شَهِيدٌ

“ Verily in this is a message for any that has a heart and understanding or who gives ear and is a witness.” (50:37)

Here Allah Ta’ala clearly declares that to understand the message of the Qur’ân and to get benefit from this immense treasure, one needs to have a Qalb. Here one may say that everybody has a heart, then why does not every body understand the Qur’ân? The answer is that one needs a pure and live heart (i.e., Qalb) which can utilise its special capability of perceiving the Attributes of Allah Ta’ala and can unfold the curtain which otherwise obscures the view from the real meaning of the Qur’ânic message. Allah Ta’ala says in the Qur’ân:

فَمَنْ يُرِدِ اللَّهُ أَنْ يَهْدِيَهُ يَشْرَحْ صَدْرَهُ لِلْإِسْلَامِ وَمَنْ يُرِدْ أَنْ يُضِلَّهُ يَجْعَلْ صَدْرَهُ ضَيِّقًا حَرَجًا كَأَنَّمَا يَصَّعَّدُ فِي السَّمَاءِ كَذَلِكَ يَجْعَلُ اللَّهُ الرِّجْسَ عَلَى الَّذِينَ لَا يُؤْمِنُونَ

“ Those who Allah Ta’ala willeth to guide, He openeth their breast to Islam. Those whom He willeth to leave straying- He maketh their breast close and constricted As if they had to climb up to the skies, thus Doth Allah Ta’ala lay abomination on those who refuse to believe” (6:125)

In this verse Allah Ta’ala has linked His bestowing of guidance to somebody with opening of his breast for Islam. Since breast is the seat of Qalb, so its opening is the opening of Qalb for Islam. This process has been described as the enlightening of the heart with the Eternal Light. As Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) while explaining the above mentioned Qur’ânic verse says:

“Ibn-Masood (RA) narrated that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) recited ( the above mentioned verse) “ those whom Allah Ta’ala willeth to guide, He openeth their breast to Islam” then Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said when the light  (External) enters the breast it opens. He was asked, is there any sign by which this (Eternal Light) can be appreciated? he said,“ yes forsaking the world of deception and inclination towards the eternal world (Hereafter) and preparation for death.” (Mishkat)

In this Hadith, Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam), has clearly pointed out that enlightening of the heart with the Eternal Light means the opening of the heart. From the Aayat quoted above and the Hadith the inference can easily be derived that it is the enlightened heart (Qalb} that gets the guidance of Allah Ta’ala and can, therefore, perceive the Truth and the ultimate Reality. Now the question arises if the heart is not enlightened by this Eternal Light, then what?

Zulmat and Nur (Darkness and Light)

The opposite of the Light is Darkness. The Qur’ân has mentioned these as Nur and Zulmat respectively.

The heart which is not illuminated by the Eternal Light is said to be in darkness or  blind as Allah Ta’ala says in the  Qur’ânic verse, already quoted, that their (external) eyes are not blind but their hearts are blind. This darkness of heart (Qalb) is called Zulmat whereas the Eternal Light which enlightens the heart is called Nur. Allah Ta’ala reveals this in the Qur’ân:

اللَّهُ وَلِيُّ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا يُخْرِجُهُمْ مِنَ الظُّلُمَاتِ إِلَى النُّورِ وَالَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا أَوْلِيَاؤُهُمُ الطَّاغُوتُ يُخْرِجُونَهُمْ مِنَ النُّورِ إِلَى الظُّلُمَاتِ أُولَئِكَ أَصْحَابُ النَّارِ هُمْ فِيهَا خَالِدُونَ

“ Allah Ta’ala is the protector of those who have faith: From the depths of darkness He leads them forth into light.” (2:257)

Now if we recapitulate the Qur’ânic revelations and the saying of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) already quoted in the previous lines, we can easily come to the conclusion that the function of the Qalb is to perceive the Divine Attributes, appreciate the Ultimate Reality and to understand the message of the Qur’ân. If the Qalb is plunged into darkness, then obviously it is deprived of these functions and will be as good as dead. So, when a person has his Qalb in the depths of darkness, he cannot know the Truth, cannot understand the significance of the eternal life, cannot achieve Ma’ârifat of Allah Ta’ala and cannot even smell the fragrance of the meaning of the Qur’ân, not to speak of tasting and assimilating it. This person is like a frog in a well that is totally unaware of the vastness of this universe, as this frog thinks that the well in which it lives is the only world.

In medical terms, we are aware of two states of mind, conscious and subconscious states. Normally, in the majority of people the major portion of mind remains in subconscious state and only a little portion attains conscious state or else one can say that the major portion of mind remains in darkness and only a little portion gets enlightened. It is the conscious portion of mind that is utilised by man, therefore, the major portion of his mind remains un-utilised.

If one talks of neuro-anatomy and physiology of human brain, the modern medical science has yet succeeded in knowing the anatomy and physiology of only few centres of brain, a tip of an iceberg.  The mystery of tremendous ocean of the brain potential remains unexplored to the scientists of Medicine even today.

The same does not hold true about the great muslim research scholars. As Allah Ta’ala took them from the depths of darkness forth into the light which enlightened their subconscious state, converting that into conscious state. With this enlightenment their ratio of conscious state and sub-conscious state got reversed, their conscious state of mind  became so powerful that it gave them immense vision which could penetrate all the curtains that otherwise lie between the Reality and the Mind and between, the Qalb and the external eyes.

What is Qalb (Heart) & What is it’s Islamic significance? by Dr Rafiq Ahmed

In man, Allah Ta’ala has created human heart as the best and chief Organ and the Qur’ân labels it as Qalb. As Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) says:

ألا إنّ حِمَى اللَّهِ في أرْضِهِ مَحَارِمُهُ ألا وإنّ في الجَسَدِ مُضْغَةً إذا صَلَحَتْ صَلَحَ الجَسدُ كُلُّهُ وإذا فَسَدَتْ فَسَدَ الجَسَدُ كُلُّهُ ألا وهْيَ القَلبُ

“Indeed there is a piece of flesh in the human body, if it stays alright, the whole body stays alright, if it  goes  astray, the whole body goes astray. Listen with open ears: that is Qalb”. (Bukhâri Sharief)

What is Qalb

It is necessary to mention here that the word Qalb is not synonymous with the human heart which consists of muscular and connective tissues filled with some venous and arterial blood that we see in the left side of the chest, but as per the definition given in “Jalalain” (an authentic commentary of the Holy Qur’ân): Qalb is an instrument which has been given the capability of perceiving the divine Attributes.

القلب وهو مشرق اللطيفة الإنسانية و يطلق على نفس اللطيفة النورانية الربانية العالمة التي هي مهبطة الأنوار إلهية الصمدانية وبها يكون الإنسان إنساناً و بها يستعد الكتاب الأوامر و اجتناب  الزواجر و هي خلاصة تولدت من الروح الروحاني و يعبر عنها الحكيم بالنفس الناطقة و لكونها هدف سهام القهر و الطف و المظهر الجمال و منشأ البسط و القبض و مبدأ المحو و الصحو و منبع الأخلاق المرضية و الأحوال الردية و كثير من الناس ذهب إلا أن تلك مضغة هي محل علم و قيل أنه في الدماغ و قيل أنه مشترك بينهما و بني ذالك على إثبات الحواس الباطنية و الكلام فيها مشهور و من راجع وجدانه أدرك أن بين الدماغ و القلب رابطة معنوية و مراجعة سرية لا ينكرها من كان له قلب أو ألقى السمع و هو شهيد (روح المعاني)

Allah Ta’ala says in the Qur’ân:

فَمَنْ يُرِدِ اللَّهُ أَنْ يَهْدِيَهُ يَشْرَحْ صَدْرَهُ لِلْإِسْلَامِ

‘Those whom He willeth to guide – He openeth their breast to ‘Islam”. (6:125)

This opening up of the breast, which is the seat of the Qalb, has been linked with understanding of guidance from Allah Ta’ala  .

Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) says in a Hadith:

“My eyes sleep, my heart does not sleep”. (Mishkat Sharief)

Rasulullah further says  in a Hadith:

“lndeed, a Ghain (a sort of veil) is put on my heart and indeed I ask Istigfar (repentance) to Allah Ta’ala 100 times a day.” (Muslim Sharief)

It is because of this Istigfar that these veils were getting lifted and the Qalb-i-Mubarak (blessed heart) of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) continued to receive higher and higher states of the Divine Knowledge.

Shah Wali-Ullah Muhaddith Delhvi (RA) says:

“Qalb is that thing by which man loves and hates.”

This means according to Shah Sahib Qalb is the seat of love and hatred.

In other words we have different instruments for knowing different things, for example, we have thermometer to help us know the temperature of a human body, sphygmomanometer is there to tell us the blood pressure of a person. So what instrument Allah Ta’ala has created in this universe with which one can perceive Him, get His Ma’ârifat and has the capability of receiving and perceiving the rays of the Attributes of Allah Ta’ala. You have got the answer that it is the Qalb. Since it is closely associated with the human heart so the two are usually thought to be synonymous and both words are usually used for describing the same thing, though there is a difference as already explained. It is in view of this greatness and extraordinary important function of the human heart that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) once caught the edge of the outer curtain of Khana-Ka’aba and said:

“O Khanah  Ka‘abah you are indeed great but the Qalb (Heart) of a Mumin (True believer) is greater than you” (Ibn Majah Sharief)

In this Hadith, Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) is referring to the greatness of the human heart. This greatness of the human heart is only because of its most important function i.e., Ma’ârifat-i-Ilâhiyah. It is because of this function which makes it king of the rest of the organs (Ra’eesul Aadha).

Allah Ta’ala confirms this function of heart or Qalb by saying in the Qur’ân:

أَفَلَمْ يَسِيرُوا فِي الْأَرْضِ فَتَكُونَ لَهُمْ قُلُوبٌ يَعْقِلُونَ بِهَا أَوْ آذَانٌ يَسْمَعُونَ بِهَا فَإِنَّهَا لَا تَعْمَى الْأَبْصَارُ وَلَكِنْ تَعْمَى الْقُلُوبُ الَّتِي فِي الصُّدُورِ

“Do they not travel through the land, so that their hearts (and minds) may thus learn wisdom and their ears may thus learn to hear. Truly it is not the eyes that are blind but the hearts which are in their breasts.” (22:46)

This statement of the Qur’ân clearly reveals that it is only the heart that can perceive the Reality. These external eyes, which have a limited range of vision, cannot see the Reality. These can only see the coarse things and not the benign things. The range of the vision of heart i.e., inner vision, is infinite. The range of the vision of external eyes is no comparison to it.

GOOD CHARACTER

Good character is an attribute of the Master of the Messengers (SAWS)
and the best of the works of the veracious [Siddīqīn], and is in
reality half of religion. It is from the fruits of the spiritual struggles of

the God-fearing, and the efforts of the worshippers. Base (bad) character is

a lethal poison, a fatal destroyer, and a humiliating debaser—manifest

vileness, and filth that distances one from the sanctuary of the

Lord of the worlds. It makes the one characterized by it of the devils,

and it is the open door to the burning fire of Allāh, that “Leaps up

over the hearts (of men),” (Qur’ān 104:7). Good character, on the

other hand, is the open door to the bounties of the Gardens and

proximity to the Merciful. Base character is a sickness of the heart

and a disease of the lower self. It is a sickness that endangers the

ever-lasting life. Therefore, it is necessary to pay utmost attention

to it, even more than outward sickness.

Character traits are attributes of the self by which it leans to

either beauty or ugliness. Complete outward beauty is not possible

through the beauty of the eyes alone, without the nose, mouth, and

cheeks. Rather, it is necessary that all these be beautiful. Similarly,

inward beauty requires four essential elements. And good character

is completed through an appropriate balance and temperance of

these elements. These elements are: knowledge, anger, passion, and

justice between the other three elements.

-Shaykh Zafar Usmani

ADVICES regarding evil glances on non-Mahrams

Casting evil glances at beautiful faces is a filthy and polluted act.

One evil glance causes several spiritual diseases even though it may be for only one minute.

No taste can match the joy experienced when one sacrifices every breath for Allah’s sake.

In old age potency diminishes, but desires and passion remain virile,at the same time ability to combat the nafs weakens.

Some people desire to acquire Allah’s pleasure but refuse to sacrifice any of their pleasures and desires.

Due to constant striving, the heart is nutured, and fertile to absorb the rays of Hidayat and Wilayat (sainthood).

Controlling the gaze creates a lustre (nur) within the heart which quickly manifests on the face of such a person.

In proportion to the severity of the urge and desire to commit sin, will be the degree of nur created, on suppressing this urge.

One lustful gaze leads to another, just as one sin leads to another and one good deed to another.

Some people claim their total helplessness with regard to controlling the gaze, its a deception of shaytaan.

Ask Allah Ta’ala to muster ones courage to leave all sins.

-MOULANA HAKEEM AKHTAR (D.B.)

O slave of Allah! Know that you are a wayfarer (salik) seeking your Lord

O slave of Allah! Know that you are a wayfarer (salik)seeking your Lord and ultimately
one day you would meet Him, as said in a tradition: Whoever hopes to meet God

should know that the time of the meeting will come. And you should know that God, the

Exalted, by His perfect Might and Wisdom has destined two journeys for the Children

of Adam. One of them is involuntary (qahri), and the other one is voluntary (ikhtiyari).

As to the involuntary journey, the starting point is the father’s loins (sulb); the second

stage is the mother’s womb; the third stage is the physical world; and the fourth stage

is that of the grave, which is either a garden out of the gardens of paradise or is a pit

out of the pits of hell. The fifth stage is the Day of Resurrection, which is equal to fifty

thousand years of this world. After that stage you will reach your eternal home and

attain the real abode – that is, the abode of peace (dar al-salam)and the paradise of

security and peace, in case you are among the felicitous and the friends of the Haqq;

or your home will be the abode of fire and torture, if, God forbid, you should be among

the wretched and the enemies of the Haqq, as Allah has said: “On the Day of

Resurrection a group will be in paradise and a group in hell.” Every breath that you

take is a step towards the stage of death. Every day of your life is equal to a parsang.

Each month is like a stage (marhalah)and each year like a station (manzil). Your

journey is like the movement of the sun and the moon – yet you are oblivious of this

journey and movement – and in your ignorance and forgetfulness you have failed to

make ready and equip yourself properly for the station (manzil)of the grave and the

onward journey to the station of the Day of Resurrection and your eternal and real

home.

But the voluntary journey is of two kinds: one is the journey of the souls and the hearts

toward the Almighty and All-powerful King of the world. The second is a physical

journey (safar jismani)in the earth of God.

-Adab al-Suluk: A Treatise on Spiritual Wayfaring by Shaykh Najm al-Din Kubr

What is Qalb?

What is Qalb? part-12: Suhbat of Ahlullah

Suhabat (Company) of Ahl-e-Dil as a Cause of Revivification of Qalb
(Whole hearts are the receiving stations of the Divine Light)

Allah Ta’ala says in Qur’ân:

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا اتَّقُوا اللَّهَ وَكُونُوا مَعَ الصَّادِقِينَ

“O Believers! remain with the truthful”. (9:119)

The Qalb also needs watering as the land needs rain. The water of Qalb are the words of pious people and company of  the Ulema. How is it possible that one’s dead and dry heart will get revived in the company of such people? Remember that the Nafs and the Shaitân are two things which cause opacity of Qalb by way of sins. The Shaitân’s origin is fire. So, a person has two kinds of fires with him, one is the fire of his baser self (Nafs) and other is the fire of Satan (Shaitân), the smoke of these fires is blackening his Qalb all the time. When a person sits in the company of the pious Muttaqi people who have got their hearts purified and enlightened by the Noor of Allah Ta’ala the Tajalliyaat of Allah Ta’ala that are always falling on their hearts change the condition of this person miraculously. When they talk, this divine light i.e., Noor mixes up with their words and when they utter such words from their mouth, they penetrate deep into the sincere listener’s heart and revivify it. The fire of Shaitân and that of his baser self gets extinguished by the Noor of the hearts of these pious people.

One can observe this light (Noor) when he goes to such a pious man who advises him to offer Salâh regularly or to tell the truth. This person after returning from starts offering Salâh regularly. This person was knowing it already that Salâh is compulsory and should be offered, or that one should tell the truth but still he was not doing so. What has happened by a simple sentence of this pious man that now this person has started offering prayers? Again, the same thing, he was very well knowing that Salâh should be offered but his baser self i.e., Nafs and Shaitân were very strong and were not allowing him to do so. When he remained in the company of a pious person for some moments, the Noor emanating from his heart extinguished the fire of Shaitân, so he could easily overpower Shaitân and Nafs and thus started offering Salâh and acquired the habit of telling the truth.

If one wants to do good deeds which he already knows, it is obligatory for him to sit in the company of Sâlihîn (the pious people).

Suhbat-i-Sâlihîn is a very exalted thing in this world. It is said that there are many advantages to remain in solitude, but one of the biggest disadvantage of this is that in it Suhbat-i-Sâlihîn is not available and such people lose the blessings of their pious company. One of the reasons mentioned for the Iblees becoming Mardood (condemned) is that he was avoiding the company of Noori angels when he was living with them and was proud of his worship.

Allah Ta’ala ordered Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam),

وَاصْبِرْ نَفْسَكَ مَعَ الَّذِينَ يَدْعُونَ رَبَّهُمْ بِالْغَدَاةِ وَالْعَشِيِّ يُرِيدُونَ وَجْهَهُ

“And keep yourself content with those who call on their Lord morning and evening, seeking His face”. (18:28)

Though Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) was always in the company of Allah Ta’ala but this Aayat was still revealed for the teaching of Ummah.

Effects of good company (Suhabat)

حَدَّثَنَا يَحْيَى بْنُ يَحْيَى التَّمِيمِىُّ وَقَطَنُ بْنُ نُسَيْرٍ – وَاللَّفْظُ لِيَحْيَى – أَخْبَرَنَا جَعْفَرُ بْنُ سُلَيْمَانَ عَنْ سَعِيدِ بْنِ إِيَاسٍ الْجُرَيْرِىِّ عَنْ أَبِى عُثْمَانَ النَّهْدِىِّ عَنْ حَنْظَلَةَ الأُسَيِّدِىِّ قَالَ – وَكَانَ مِنْ كُتَّابِ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ -صلى الله عليه وسلم- قَالَ – لَقِيَنِى أَبُو بَكْرٍ فَقَالَ كَيْفَ أَنْتَ يَا حَنْظَلَةُ قَالَ قُلْتُ نَافَقَ حَنْظَلَةُ قَالَ سُبْحَانَ اللَّهِ مَا تَقُولُ قَالَ قُلْتُ نَكُونُ عِنْدَ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ -صلى الله عليه وسلم- يُذَكِّرُنَا بِالنَّارِ وَالْجَنَّةِ حَتَّى كَأَنَّا رَأْىَ عَيْنٍ فَإِذَا خَرَجْنَا مِنْ عِنْدِ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ -صلى الله عليه وسلم- عَافَسْنَا الأَزْوَاجَ وَالأَوْلاَدَ وَالضَّيْعَاتِ فَنَسِينَا كَثِيرًا قَالَ أَبُو بَكْرٍ فَوَاللَّهِ إِنَّا لَنَلْقَى مِثْلَ هَذَا. فَانْطَلَقْتُ أَنَا وَأَبُو بَكْرٍ حَتَّى دَخَلْنَا عَلَى رَسُولِ اللَّهِ -صلى الله عليه وسلم- قُلْتُ نَافَقَ حَنْظَلَةُ يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ. فَقَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ -صلى الله عليه وسلم- « وَمَا ذَاكَ ». قُلْتُ يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ نَكُونُ عِنْدَكَ تُذَكِّرُنَا بِالنَّارِ وَالْجَنَّةِ حَتَّى كَأَنَّا رَأْىَ عَيْنٍ فَإِذَا خَرَجْنَا مِنْ عِنْدِكَ عَافَسْنَا الأَزْوَاجَ وَالأَوْلاَدَ وَالضَّيْعَاتِ نَسِينَا كَثِيرًا. فَقَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ -صلى الله عليه وسلم- « وَالَّذِى نَفْسِى بِيَدِهِ إِنْ لَوْ تَدُومُونَ عَلَى مَا تَكُونُونَ عِنْدِى وَفِى الذِّكْرِ لَصَافَحَتْكُمُ الْمَلاَئِكَةُ عَلَى فُرُشِكُمْ وَفِى طُرُقِكُمْ وَلَكِنْ يَا حَنْظَلَةُ سَاعَةً وَسَاعَةً ». ثَلاَثَ مَرَّاتٍ.

Hanzala Usayyidi, who was amongst the scribes of Allah’s Messenger (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam). reported: I met Abu Bakr. He said: How are you? He (Hanzala) said: Hanzala has turned to be a hypocrite. He (Abu Bakr) said: Hallowed be Allah, what are you saying? Thereupon he said: I say that when we are in the company of Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) we ponder over Hell-Fire and Paradise as if we are seeing them with our very eyes and when we are away from Allah’s Messenger (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) we attend to our wives, our children, our business; most of these things (pertaining to After-life) slip out of our minds. Abu Bakr said: By Allah, I also experience the same. So I and Abu Bakr went to Allah’s Messenger (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) and said to him: Allah’s Messenger, Hanzala has turned to be a hypocrite. Thereupon Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) said: What has happened to you? I said: Allah’s Messenger, when we are in your company, we are reminded of Hell-Fire and Paradise as if we are seeing them with our own eyes, but whenever we go away from you and attend to our wives, children and business, much of these things go out of our minds. Thereupon Allah’s Messenger (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said: By Him in Whose Hand is my life, if your state of mind remains the same as it is in my presence and you are always busy in remembrance (of Allah), the Angels will shake hands with you in your beds and in your paths but, Hanzala, time should be devoted (to the worldly affairs) and time (should be devoted to prayer and meditation). He (the Holy Prophet) said this thrice.

From this incident many lessons are derived but I will confine myself to my topic only that is in the Suhabat of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam), the Sahâbah were experiencing strange things which they lacked in his absence. Sahâbah Al-Kiram said that they noticed dramatic change in themselves after the departure of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) from the world so soon that they had not even finished the burial ceremony of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) and the clay of the grave was still sticking to their hands.

Effects of bad company (Suhabat)

Once Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) was reciting Qur’ân- i-Sharief in Salâh while he was Imâm of Sahâbahh-Kirâm (RA). During the course of recitation of the Qur’ân, Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) experienced some difficulty in reciting. After the completion of Salâh (prayer), Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) turned towards the Sahâbah (RA) and said,

“What has happened to the people that they are joining the Salâh (prayer) without proper Wudhu(ablution).” (Mishkat Sharief)

Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) had come to know {through the intuition) that a person had joined the congregational Salâh without proper Wudhu and the effect of this was experienced by Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) in the form of difficulty in recitation of the Qur’ân. You can imagine that the effect of the company of a person who had not made the Wudhu properly was such that it even effected Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam), who was the most perfect of the mankind. From this one can easily judge how one’s Qalb must be getting ruined in the company of bad people who are always engaged in the disobedience of Allah Ta’ala. May Allah Ta’ala protect us.

What is Qalb? part-11: following the Sunnah

 Following of Sunnah of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam)

as a cause of revivification of Qalb. -Dr. Rafiq Ahmed

This is one of the most important causes of revivification of Qalb. Blessed are those who understand it and follow it from the core of their hearts. Earlier on it was comprehensively proved that if you want to get rid of the darkness of Qalb and to enlighten it with the Noor of the Qur’ân, you have to connect your Qalb with the power house of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam).

Allah Ta’ala says in the Qur’ân:

قُلْ إِنْ كُنْتُمْ تُحِبُّونَ اللَّهَ فَاتَّبِعُونِي يُحْبِبْكُمُ اللَّهُ وَيَغْفِرْ لَكُمْ ذُنُوبَكُمْ وَاللَّهُ غَفُورٌ رَحِيمٌ

“Say:(O Muhammad)! “If you do love Allah Ta’ala, follow me: Allah Ta’ala will love you and forgive you your sins, for Allah Ta’ala is oft-forgiving, most merciful.” (3:31)

In this verse Allah Ta’ala declares that if you want My (i.e, Allah Ta’ala’s) love, you have only one way out, that is to follow Muhammad (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam). You know, the Qur’ân is the precious treasure of Allah Ta’ala. He will bestow this treasure only to those whom He loves. In other words, first we have to behave in such a way so that one becomes beloved of Allah Ta’ala, otherwise how can you expect His blessings, particularly a blessing like that of Al-Qur’ân. Allah Ta’ala has not left this for us to think how can we make Him happy. He has been kind enough to tell us well in advance as to what is the thing which He expects from us so that He may love us and subsequently bestow upon us His unlimited blessings, best of which is the Qur’ân. He says that He will love those who follow Muhammad (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam).

Unfortunately, these days so called modern Muslims, who are highly influenced by the apparently glittering west, think that following Muhammad (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) is unnecssary and orthodox.

Allah Ta’ala says:

لَقَدْ كَانَ لَكُمْ فِيهِمْ أُسْوَةٌ حَسَنَةٌ

“Indeed, ye have in the Messenger of Allah Ta’ala an excellent exemplar”. (60:6)

Allah Ta’ala says that the best example for you is the life of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) and the so called modern Muslims of today by their deeds if not by their belief, say that the best way is the western way of life. How can these people understand the divine message of the Qur’ân? The Qur’ân is guidance for those who fear Allah Ta’ala and abstain from sins.

Allah Ta’ala says in the Qur’ân:

ذَلِكَ الْكِتَابُ لَا رَيْبَ فِيهِ هُدًى لِلْمُتَّقِينَ

“It is Guidance sure, without doubt, to those who fear Allah Ta’ala”. (2:2)

One who fears Allah Ta’ala, will not displease Him. From the above verse (3:31) it is clear that Allah Ta’ala will not be pleased with somebody who does not follow Muhammad (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam).

How can following of Muhammad (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) help in understanding the Qur’an

Every aspect of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) is full of Noor, whether it be his pious Rooh (spirit) or his life or his words or deeds. He was not a Noor for himself only. Allah Ta’ala says that He has sent him as Noor (to mankind). Unfortunate are those who are devoid of this Noor and blessed are those who are cherishing this wealth.

When a Mu’min (believer) acts according to the Sunnah (tradition) of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam), each such deed carries a Noor with it which illuminates and enlightens the Qalb of the doer of this deed, which has been done strictly as per Sunnah of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam). These are called Anwaar-i-Sunnan. Say for example, a person has to take his meals, he takes his meals as per Sunnah—washing both of his hands before eating, recites Bismillah, lays the Dastaarkhan (sheet), takes the food from front side of the plate etc. He does this with the Niyyat that these are the Sunnah of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) and that Allah Ta’ala likes him to follow Muhammad (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam). Now, one person takes his meals but does not do these things and does not make this Niyyat and the other person takes his meals according to the Sunnah. Both take meals, yet there is a great difference between the two. Both get energies for their bodies from the food, but the second person who takes the meals as per Sunnah gets Roohani (spiritual) energy as well. This person with Roohani (spiritual) energy is better placed for understanding the Qur’ân than the first one. From this example one must have understood how following of Sunnah is necessary for Tazkiya and how the deeds not as per Sunnah can deprive a person from Tazkiya. Here it may be understood that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) says that the Dua of such a person is not accepted by Allah Ta’ala who takes Haraam food. Here again this Haraam food spoils the Qalb thus depriving the blessings of Dua to shower upon this person.

This thing is so easy to understand as it has very simple reasoning but unfortunately the Qaloob (hearts) of majority of Muslims have got so much darkened and lifeless that they fail to understand this simple fact as to how can following of the Sunnah help in imbibing the Divine guidance. These days there are thousands of libraries, millions of books, hundreds of journals, advanced audio visual methods of propagating Islam and countless conferences and other Islamic congregation held everywhere. Islamic history reveals that in earlier centuries these things were not available in plenty. All the same earlier Muslims were qualitatively far superior to the modern Muslims. If you measure it by using the modern yardstick then the situation should have been reverse i.e., with the modern advances which are providing more and more information easily to a Muslim, should have been qualitatively better but it is not so. It is simply because today’s Muslim, highly overawed and greatly influenced by the western culture, thinks that he can become a good Muslim and can understand the Qur’ân by using the modern audio visual aids of propagation and by reading too many books even if his actions and lifestyle is totally western and against the Sunnah of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam).

Hadhrat Imâm Malik (RA) used to say that this Ummah cannot regain its glory unless it adopts the same means which were adopted by earlier Muslims i.e., Sahâbah al-Kirâm (RA) and Taaba’een. The secret of success and the source of the knowledge was the Sunnah of Rasullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam).

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

What is Qalb? part-10: Remembrance of Death

Remembrance of death and sense of accountability as a cause of revivification of Qalb

Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said that:

 Qalb gets rusted. He was asked by his companions y as to how can this rust be removed from the Qalb. Rasulullahe replied, the rust of the Qalb can be removed by two things viz; remembrance of death and recitation of the Qur’ân. (Baihaqi)

Remembrance of death plays a very effective role in purifying the heart. Allah Ta’ala has created man as a very wonderful creature. Despite having excellent qualities, man has also some characteristics contrary to excellent and one of them is negligence. It would have been very difficult for man to commit a sin if this negligence would not have existed. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) says that a Mumin (true believer) does not remain a Mumin during the time he steals or indulges in adultery .There is a consensus among the scholars (Ulema-e-Haq) that one does not become a Kaafir (disbeliever) by committing a grave sin. But the above mentioned Hadith states that a Mumin does not remain Mumin during the time he steals or commits adultery. Commentators of Hadith have given the explanation that it is impossible to commit disobedience of Allah Ta’ala in the presence of Imaan. In other words we can say that when a Mu’min commits a grave sin, his Imaan is present but he becomes negligent about it. It is during this period of negligence that he dares to commit disobedience of Allah Ta’ala. Prerequisite of Imaan is that one has firm belief that Allah Ta’ala is always watching and is always present wherever one may be. In presence of such a firm belief, how can a Mu’min dare to commit a sin? Obviously it is his negligence which makes him to commit a sin resulting in rusting of his Qalb. Unfortunately most of the Muslims today spend their whole lives under the dark clouds of this negligence (Gaflat). This negligence is the root cause of deteriorating condition of the present day Muslims and their unawareness about the treasures of the glorious Qur’ân. It has been many times stated that the instrument for understanding the Qur’ân is the Qalb and that the sins committed cause rusting of the Qalb and hence depriving it of its ability to understand the Qur’ân. Here we can understand that a Mu’min commits a sin when he is negligent of the basic belief of Imaan that Allah Ta’ala is seeing, is present and that he has to appear before Him for accountability on the Day of Judgment.

Since Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) has been the most kind to his Ummah, he (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) has very kindly taught the Muslims that if they want to get rid of the rust on their Qaloob in order to get it revived, they should constantly remember death in abundance. Every one of us must have experienced the softening of heart on the death of any of our close relative. One experiences a strange change in his heart. Man is such a negligent creature that he even forgets this absolute reality of death which he witnesses now and then. This negligence is indeed horrible. This negligence hardens his Qalb and he gets busy with mundane affairs to such an extent that his Qalb loses all its excellences. The death of some near and dear one reminds him of the short life span of this world life and the everlasting life in the Hereafter. At the same time death makes him to remind the horrifying incidents which he has to experience after death. It makes him to remind that he has to leave his children, wife, parents and other relations who are most dear to him and for whom he is working day in and day out. It makes him remind the luxurious bungalows and all its luxurious decorative things will remain behind and won’t accompany him in the grave. These painful thoughts definitely soften the hardened hearts.

Distant hopes

One of the important causes as well as the effect of the negligence is development of distant hopes.

Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) says in a Hadith:

“I fear two things that may overcome you, first—obedience of the desires of Nafs (self) and second—the distant hopes (Tooli-Amal)”. (Mishkat Sharief)

Satan (Shaitân) takes full advantage of this quality of negligence of a man and involves him in distant hopes. The distant hopes mean that a person thinks in his inner thoughts of great ambitious plans which he hopes may get fulfilled in the coming decades, but at the same time forgetting that the present day may be his last day. He enjoys the thoughts of these future plans (in air) least realizing that he is wasting his time and that Satan (Shaitân) and his self (Nafs) are keeping him away from the Reality.

When Imâm Ghazzali (RA) wrote the chapter of “Akhlaaqi-Razeelah — ‘Despicable Morals’” in his famous book “Ihya-ul-Uloom”, he kept this bad quality of distant hopes on number one in the list of human despicable morals. When I read this in the early years of my life, I got surprised to see this at the top of the list and other bad qualities like pride, jealousy, greed, back biting etc below it. I could not understand it at that time, but later on as I gained some experience, I had no words to praise the depth of Ilm (know-ledge), this great man of Islam (Imâm Ghazzali R.A) was having as he has rightly placed this on number one. I could also appreciate by the grace of Allah Ta’ala, that this bad disease of distant hopes ruins a Muslim. A person who gets this disease of distant hopes, is always having false hopes about his future, lives in a fool’s paradise. These distant hopes keep him away from Allah Ta’ala, and from the real life—The Hereafter. He remains busy in materialistic things least realizing that they are not going to last. He gets no time to explore the treasures of the Holy Qur’ân. He boasts of his worldly status, worldly knowledge and worldly gains. He is like a person who constructs a huge beautiful building on a bridge, feels proud of it and takes rest in that building very comfortably. He is satisfied and fell secure in this building. Suddenly a strong wave arises from the river, strikes against the bridge and engulfs it and this man’s false paradise. Then this person realizes that every thing in this world was a nightmare. He wakes up to the realities at a time when it is too late and of no use to him.

Most of us know the story of Shaikh Chilly. He becomes a very rich man in a few minutes and marries a very beautiful lady in his thoughts while carrying a tin of oil on his head (as he was a very poor porter). He gets lost in his thoughts feeling so much joy that he shakes his head in happiness and the tin of oil falls down and collapses and all his hopes are dashed to ground. We laugh at him whenever we narrate this incident, but if we go a little deeper in ourselves with sincerity, most of us will definitely find that we are no different than Shaikh Chilly. We will find out that we too also think like Shaikh Chilly. Then what is the difference? There appears to be no difference. May Allah Ta’ala make all of us to understand this point and cure us of this fatal disease of Tooli Amal. The ultimate result of both these despicable morals i.e., distant hopes and negligence is the cause of the rusting of the Qalb. This rusted Qalb remains blind to the realities revealed in the Qur’ân. The remedy lies in the remembrance of death. A person who remember death cannot think of distant hopes and cannot afford to be negligent of his basic duties which include knowing Allah Ta’ala, His Messenger (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) and understanding of the Qur’ân.

How to remember death

Every night when you go to bed, switch off the lights, close your eyes, when it is absolutely calm in the room, start thinking about death as this — it may be my last night, I may not get up from my bed tomorrow. What will happen then? My children, wife and parents etc will remain behind. All my property will remain behind. My clothes will be taken off. I will be helpless in the hands of few people who will wash my body. I will wrapped up in a simple white cloth (Kafan). I will then be put in a closed box (Taboot) and buried in the darkness of the grave. The grave will be closed and I will be alone there. Nakeer and Munkar—the two angels) will come and will question me. What will be my fate that time? What will be my fate on the Day of Judgment and so on and so forth.

lnsha-Allah Ta’ala after a few days only one will appreciate the softening of his heart which one needs for understanding the Qur’ân.

What is Qalb? part-9: Causes of Ihya of the Qalb

Causes of Revivification (Ihya) and Enlightenment of Qalb- Dr Rafiq Ahmed

  1. Firm faith in Allah Ta’ala.

  2. Avoidance of pollution of Qalb by the filth of sins.

  3. Remembrance of Allah Ta’ala.

  4. Recitation of the Quran with Aadâb (etiquettes and pre-requisites).

  5. Remembrance of Death and sense of accountability on the day of Judgement.

  6. Following of the Sunnah (Tradition) of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) strictly.

  7. To have the noble company and the guidance of Ahle-Dil (whose hearts are receiving-stations of the Divine Light).

  1. Firm faith in Allah Ta’ala

This has already been described to some extent. This is the first and the foremost prerequisite for revivification and satisfaction of heart. The darkest and biggest stain which ruins the capability of pure and live heart is Kufr (not believing in Allah Ta’ala and His Messenger).

Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) described such a heart as dead. Such a dead heart can neither appreciate nor enjoy the ultimate Reality. It is also unaware of its most pitiable and miserable condition, hence feels false happiness which is illusory with no comparison to the real one.

  1. Avoidance of pollution of Qalb by the filth of sins

If a piece of wood is taken near the fire, it will burn, whether one intends to burn it or not. Similarly, when one commits a sin, it stains the heart and makes it impure whether he wishes it or not. If a person misuses his eyes, i.e., gazes at those ladies whom he is not allowed to look at as per Shariah, even without bad intentions, will cause a stain on his Qalb, thus making it impure. Similarly if a person talks ill about others, this will ruin his heart. These sins are like cyanide, anybody taking it will die, whether he intends to die or not. Those people whose spiritual sense of smell (extra sensory perception of smell) is functioning do feel the awful bad (repugnantly foul) smell of sins. The angels having much finer perception of things feel the foul smell of sins, hence most of the angels of mercy leave the company of such a person and curse him.

A great man in Islamic History Hadhrat Imâm Abu Haniefah (RA) had such an inner vision that he could see the sins of people which were getting washed off from them while performing ablution (Wudhu). He therefore decreed that the water falling down from the parts of body being washed during Wudhu, is not pure. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said in a Hadith that Allah Ta’ala does not see towards the external appearance of people but towards their hearts and their intentions. When hearts are impure and filled with filth, they cannot receive the pure Eternal Light (Nur) necessary for understanding the divine revelation—the Holy Qur’ân and for perceiving the ultimate Reality.

After having firm faith in Allah Ta’ala, it is imperative to avoid all sins, major or minor, in order to protect the capability of Qalb to understand the Qur;an. One may read thousands of books including great commentaries of the Qur’ân, he cannot even smell the fragrance of the purest Divine revelation of al-Qur’ân.

  1. Remembrance of Allah Ta’ala (Zikrullah):

Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) says in a Hadith that:

 “The Qalb which is in the remembrance of Allah Ta’ala is live and the Qalb which is careless of it is as good as dead”. (Bukhâri & Muslim Sharief)

Allah Ta’ala says in the Qur’ân:

فَوَيْلٌ لِلْقَاسِيَةِ قُلُوبُهُمْ مِنْ ذِكْرِ اللَّهِ أُولَئِكَ فِي ضَلَالٍ مُبِينٍ

“Woe to those whose hearts are hardened against the remembrance of Allah Ta’ala! They are manifestly wandering (in error)!” (39:22)

Hafiz Ibn Taymiya (RA) says that Zikrullah is so much necessary for heart as water is necessary for fish. Imagine the condition of a fish without water. It has already been mentioned that the receptors for appreciating the divine light and the Ultimate Reality are in the Qalb and that they get fogged by the sins, and totally blocked by the dark clouds of Kufr (Atheism). To remove this fog or dark clouds from the receptors of Qalb one needs two things:

1) Irrigation by the water of Zikr.

2) Heat of Muhabbat (Love).

One needs these two things in the same way as one needs them for a tree from which one wants to have fruits. The tree to flourish and to bear fruit, needs enough irrigation and the sunlight.

what is Qalb? part-8 : Locks upon the Qalb

 Locks Upon the Qalb

Allah Ta’ala says in the Qur’ân:

أَفَلَا يَتَدَبَّرُونَ الْقُرْآنَ أَمْ عَلَى قُلُوبٍ أَقْفَالُهَا

“ Do they not then earnestly seek to understand the Qur’ân, or is that there are locks upon their hearts ?” (47:24)

Allah Ta’ala has sent an immense treasure to man in the form of the Qur’ân. Allah Ta’ala wants man to earnestly seek to understand this Divine revelation and to do justice to his own capabilities which Allah Ta’ala has bestowed upon him. It is in this context that Allah Ta’ala pities those who do not seek to understand the Qur’ân. The failure to understand the Qur’ân has been attributed to the locks upon their hearts in this verse of the Qur’ân.

It is the duty of everybody to know the essence and reality of these locks? And secondly to try his level best to scrutinize the condition of his Qalb and see if it is not locked.

Qalb is capable of seeking the secrets of heavens

Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said: ” If the Satan would not have been roaming around the hearts of men, they would have been able to see the angels (and the secrets) of heavens.” (Baihaqi Sharief)

It is this haziness caused by the Satan on the plain mirror of the Qalb that obscures it from viewing the Realities. Otherwise this mirror of Qalb, if kept clean or got cleaned, has the capability to view those things which remain hidden. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) further says: “When a person is born, an angel and a Satan are posted on his Qalb, the angel invites him towards righteousness while Satan towards evil deeds.” (Tirmidhi Sharief)

If a person follows the directions of the angel, his Satan becomes weak. On the other hand if a person follows the direction of the Satan, it becomes very strong and causes thick clouds on his Qalb. By following the Satan one commits sins. We have already quoted a hadith in which Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) says that sins cause dark stains on heart. Correlating the two we can infer that these are the sins which cause darkness or haziness on the Qalb. This darkness blocks the receptors of the Qalb which were to perceive the Reality. When these receptors fail to do so i.e., to perceive the Reality, we can say that these receptors of Qalb have got locked.

After knowing a little bit about these locks, now we can understand the meaning and significance of this DUA (prayer) in which Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said:

اللهم افتح قلوبنا بذكرك

“O Allah Ta’ala! open the locks of our hearts by (the grace of) your remembrance”.

Allah Ta’ala is Nur (Divine Light), His Attributes posses Nur and His name is full of Nur. When a Mumin (True Believer) remembers Him by His name, its Nur enters his Qalb and illuminates and enlightens it. The receptors of Qalb which had been in darkness of sins and in the grip of Satan receive the Divine Light which overcomes this darkness and also forces the Satan to vacate from this enlightened Qalb. The receptors of this Qalb start functioning and thereby it gets revived. Now we can understand this Qur’ânic verse well:

الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَتَطْمَئِنُّ قُلُوبُهُمْ بِذِكْرِ اللَّهِ أَلَا بِذِكْرِ اللَّهِ تَطْمَئِنُّ الْقُلُوبُ

“Those who believe and whose hearts find satisfaction in the remembrance of Allah Ta’ala for without doubt in the remembrance of Allah Ta’ala do the hearts find the satisfaction.” (13:28)

What is Qalb? Part-7: What destroys the Qalb?

What destroys the highest inherent capabilities of Qalb

عَنْ أَبِى هُرَيْرَةَ أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ -صلى الله عليه وسلم- قَالَ : إِنَّ الْمُؤْمِنَ إِذَا أَذْنَبَ كَانَتْ نُكْتَةٌ سَوْدَاءُ فِى قَلْبِهِ فَإِنْ تَابَ وَنَزَعَ وَاسْتَغْفَرَ صُقِلَ قَلْبُهُ فَإِنْ زَادَ زَادَتْ فَذَلِكَ الرَّانُ الَّذِى ذَكَرَهُ اللَّهُ فِى كِتَابِهِ ( كَلاَّ بَلْ رَانَ عَلَى قُلُوبِهِمْ مَا كَانُوا يَكْسِبُونَ)

Abu Huriarah (RA) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) has said: “Indeed when a man commits sin, there occurs a black stain on his heart. Then if he repents and asks forgiveness (from Allah Ta’ala) his heart gets cleaned and if he commits more sins, that black stain increases in size till it covers the whole heart. It is that cover of impure (sins), which has been called Ra’an (rust), which Allah Ta’ala mentions in the verse No. (83:14)” (Ibn Majah)

كَلَّا بَلْ رَانَ عَلَى قُلُوبِهِمْ مَا كَانُوا يَكْسِبُونَ

“By no means! But on their hearts is the stain of the (ill) which they do”. (83:14)

The heart of man, as created by Allah Ta’ala is pure and unsullied. When a man does an evil deed, it makes a stain on his heart. But on repentance or forgiveness, this stain gets washed off. If such a person doesn’t repent or is not forgiven, this stain deepens as well as spreads more and more, until his heart is sealed and eventually he dies a spiritual death. These are such stains which prevent the heart from perceiving truths which are otherwise obvious to enlightened hearts.

Allah Ta’ala says

خَتَمَ اللَّهُ عَلَى قُلُوبِهِمْ وَعَلَى سَمْعِهِمْ وَعَلَى أَبْصَارِهِمْ غِشَاوَةٌ وَلَهُمْ عَذَابٌ عَظِيمٌ

“AlIah hath set a seal on their hearts and on their hearing and on their eyes is a veil, Great is the chastisement They (incur). (2: 7)

Pure heart is like a mirror. If it is free from these evil stains, it has the ability to receive and reflect the Divine Light which penetrates the veils lying between the Reality and the eyes. But if this mirror of Qalb (Divine) is stained with evil deeds, it gets sullied and hence unable to receive this light. It loses its function and becomes as good as dead. This dead state of Qalb is here referred to in Aayat (2:7) as a seal, as if their hearts have been sealed.

The biggest and the darkest stain on Qalb is caused by Kufr (not believing in Allah Ta’ala and His Messenger—Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) )

This evil almost completely darkens the Qalb and one can say it gets completely sealed or shut off from the Reality.

In case of believers the ratio of the stain on Qalb and the evil deeds is directly proportional. More the evil deeds, more the stains and vice versa. If a believers do not desist from these kind of deeds and remains adamant on the evil deeds of major significance, there is every apprehension that his heart may also get sealed which he may not be even knowing.

May Allah Ta’ala protect our hearts from this disease- Aamin.

Allah Ta’ala says in the Qur’ân:

فَبِمَا نَقْضِهِمْ مِيثَاقَهُمْ وَكُفْرِهِمْ بِآيَاتِ اللَّهِ وَقَتْلِهِمُ الْأَنْبِيَاءَ بِغَيْرِ حَقٍّ وَقَوْلِهِمْ قُلُوبُنَا غُلْفٌ بَلْ طَبَعَ اللَّهُ عَلَيْهَا بِكُفْرِهِمْ فَلَا يُؤْمِنُونَ إِلَّا قَلِيلًا

“(They have incurred divine displeasure): In that they broke their covenant. That they rejected the signs of Allah Ta’ala; that they slew the Messenger in defiance of right; that they said, “ Our hearts are the wrappings” Nay, Allah Ta’ala hath set the seal on their hearts for their blasphemy, And little is it they believe”.(4:155)

أَفَلَا يَتَدَبَّرُونَ الْقُرْآنَ أَمْ عَلَى قُلُوبٍ أَقْفَالُهَا

“Do they not then Earnestly seek to understand The Qur’ân, or is that there are Locks upon their Hearts.” (47:24)

Because of these serious evils, Allah Ta’ala sets the seal on their hearts so that they no more deserve the Divine Light and divine pleasure. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) , says that: “The hardened heart (the heart which is stained and darkened) is disliked by Allah Ta’ala the most.”

What is Qalb? part-6

Qalb—The seat of faculty of understanding and knowledge

Allah Ta’ala says in the Qur’ân:

وَلَقَدْ ذَرَأْنَا لِجَهَنَّمَ كَثِيرًا مِنَ الْجِنِّ وَالْإِنْسِ لَهُمْ قُلُوبٌ لَا يَفْقَهُونَ بِهَا وَلَهُمْ أَعْيُنٌ لَا يُبْصِرُونَ بِهَا وَلَهُمْ آذَانٌ لَا يَسْمَعُونَ بِهَا أُولَئِكَ كَالْأَنْعَامِ بَلْ هُمْ أَضَلُّ أُولَئِكَ هُمُ الْغَافِلُونَ

“ Many are the jinns and men we have made for Hell. They have hearts where-with they understand not, eyes wherewith they see not and ears wherewith they hear not. They are like cattle -nay more misguided: for they are heedless (of warning)”. (7:179)

Here Allah Ta’ala once again clearly reveals that the seat of faculty of understanding is Qalb and those who do not make use of this faculty, they are as good as cattle.

Rabeea Al-Jurashi (RA) quotes Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) as saying:

 “An angel came to him and said, “Let your eyes sleep, let your ears hear but your Qalb (heart) remain awakned”. (Mishkaat Sharief)

This is a vast subject, I would like to conclude it in the light of the Qur’ânic revelations and Ahâdith which I have quoted, the following conclusions become quite crystal clear to us:

  1. Qalb is the seat of faculty of understanding and divine knowledge.

  2. Qalb is the instrument which has been specially devised for receiving and appreciating the eternal light.

  3. For proper understanding of the Qur’ân, a pure, live and properly functioning Qalb is needed.

  4. The spiritual jewels have been kept hidden in darkness in the Qalb.

  5. Blind Qalb can neither attain any spiritual height nor know the Reality.

  6. To bring Qalb out of darkness so that it can utilise its higher faculties, a light is needed.

  7. The light can be had from one and the only lamp and that is Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) .

  8. In other words we can say understanding of the Qur’ân is the function of Qalb which is illuminated and the enlightened by the light of the lamp of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) , which makes it capable of receiving eternal light necessary for unraveling the spiritual truths.

What is Qalb (Heart) & What is it’s Islamic significance? by Dr Rafiq Ahmed

In man, Allah Ta’ala has created human heart as the best and chief Organ and the Qur’ân labels it as Qalb. As Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) says:

ألا إنّ حِمَى اللَّهِ في أرْضِهِ مَحَارِمُهُ ألا وإنّ في الجَسَدِ مُضْغَةً إذا صَلَحَتْ صَلَحَ الجَسدُ كُلُّهُ وإذا فَسَدَتْ فَسَدَ الجَسَدُ كُلُّهُ ألا وهْيَ القَلبُ

“Indeed there is a piece of flesh in the human body, if it stays alright, the whole body stays alright, if it  goes  astray, the whole body goes astray. Listen with open ears: that is Qalb”. (Bukhâri Sharief)

What is Qalb

It is necessary to mention here that the word Qalb is not synonymous with the human heart which consists of muscular and connective tissues filled with some venous and arterial blood that we see in the left side of the chest, but as per the definition given in “Jalalain” (an authentic commentary of the Holy Qur’ân): Qalb is an instrument which has been given the capability of perceiving the divine Attributes.

القلب وهو مشرق اللطيفة الإنسانية و يطلق على نفس اللطيفة النورانية الربانية العالمة التي هي مهبطة الأنوار إلهية الصمدانية وبها يكون الإنسان إنساناً و بها يستعد الكتاب الأوامر و اجتناب  الزواجر و هي خلاصة تولدت من الروح الروحاني و يعبر عنها الحكيم بالنفس الناطقة و لكونها هدف سهام القهر و الطف و المظهر الجمال و منشأ البسط و القبض و مبدأ المحو و الصحو و منبع الأخلاق المرضية و الأحوال الردية و كثير من الناس ذهب إلا أن تلك مضغة هي محل علم و قيل أنه في الدماغ و قيل أنه مشترك بينهما و بني ذالك على إثبات الحواس الباطنية و الكلام فيها مشهور و من راجع وجدانه أدرك أن بين الدماغ و القلب رابطة معنوية و مراجعة سرية لا ينكرها من كان له قلب أو ألقى السمع و هو شهيد (روح المعاني)

Allah Ta’ala says in the Qur’ân:

فَمَنْ يُرِدِ اللَّهُ أَنْ يَهْدِيَهُ يَشْرَحْ صَدْرَهُ لِلْإِسْلَامِ

‘Those whom He willeth to guide – He openeth their breast to ‘Islam”. (6:125)

This opening up of the breast, which is the seat of the Qalb, has been linked with understanding of guidance from Allah Ta’ala  .

Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) says in a Hadith:

 “My eyes sleep, my heart does not sleep”. (Mishkat Sharief)

Rasulullah further says  in a Hadith:

 “lndeed, a Ghain (a sort of veil) is put on my heart and indeed I ask Istigfar (repentance) to Allah Ta’ala 100 times a day.” (Muslim Sharief)

It is because of this Istigfar that these veils were getting lifted and the Qalb-i-Mubarak (blessed heart) of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) continued to receive higher and higher states of the Divine Knowledge.

Shah Wali-Ullah Muhaddith Delhvi (RA) says:

“Qalb is that thing by which man loves and hates.”

This means according to Shah Sahib Qalb is the seat of love and hatred.

In other words we have different instruments for knowing different things, for example, we have thermometer to help us know the temperature of a human body, sphygmomanometer is there to tell us the blood pressure of a person. So what instrument Allah Ta’ala has created in this universe with which one can perceive Him, get His Ma’ârifat and has the capability of receiving and perceiving the rays of the Attributes of Allah Ta’ala. You have got the answer that it is the Qalb. Since it is closely associated with the human heart so the two are usually thought to be synonymous and both words are usually used for describing the same thing, though there is a difference as already explained. It is in view of this greatness and extraordinary important function of the human heart that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) once caught the edge of the outer curtain of Khana-Ka’aba and said:

“O Khanah  Ka‘abah you are indeed great but the Qalb (Heart) of a Mumin (True believer) is greater than you” (Ibn Majah Sharief)

In this Hadith, Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) is referring to the greatness of the human heart. This greatness of the human heart is only because of its most important function i.e., Ma’ârifat-i-Ilâhiyah. It is because of this function which makes it king of the rest of the organs (Ra’eesul Aadha).

Allah Ta’ala confirms this function of heart or Qalb by saying in the Qur’ân:

أَفَلَمْ يَسِيرُوا فِي الْأَرْضِ فَتَكُونَ لَهُمْ قُلُوبٌ يَعْقِلُونَ بِهَا أَوْ آذَانٌ يَسْمَعُونَ بِهَا فَإِنَّهَا لَا تَعْمَى الْأَبْصَارُ وَلَكِنْ تَعْمَى الْقُلُوبُ الَّتِي فِي الصُّدُورِ

“Do they not travel through the land, so that their hearts (and minds) may thus learn wisdom and their ears may thus learn to hear. Truly it is not the eyes that are blind but the hearts which are in their breasts.” (22:46)

This statement of the Qur’ân clearly reveals that it is only the heart that can perceive the Reality. These external eyes, which have a limited range of vision, cannot see the Reality. These can only see the coarse things and not the benign things. The range of the vision of heart i.e., inner vision, is infinite. The range of the vision of external eyes is no comparison to it.

What is Qalb?-part 2

What is Qalb?-part 2
Allah Ta’ala invited His beloved Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) to the highest point of humanity, the highest peak which was possible for a human being to reach but which was possible only for the greatest of the greats i.e., our beloved Prophet Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam). This was the highest status which is commonly known as Mairaj (Rasulullah’s (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) midnight ascension). The capability given to the human heart (Qalb) was utilized to its maximum by the sacred Qalb-i-Mubarak of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) for knowing the Ultimate Reality—the Almighty Allah Ta’ala. When Allah Ta’ala mentioned this highest achievement of man, He again used the word ‘Heart’.

مَا كَذَبَ الْفُؤَادُ مَا رَأَى

“The (Prophet’s) heart in no way falsified that which he saw.” (53:11)

  This again indicates that the highest perception of the ultimate Reality i.e., Allah Ta’ala was achieved again by the same instrument i.e., Qalb. In the another Qur’ânic verse, Allah Ta’ala says:

إِنَّ فِي ذَلِكَ لَذِكْرَى لِمَنْ كَانَ لَهُ قَلْبٌ أَوْ أَلْقَى السَّمْعَ وَهُوَ شَهِيدٌ

“ Verily in this is a message for any that has a heart and understanding or who gives ear and is a witness.” (50:37)

Here Allah Ta’ala clearly declares that to understand the message of the Qur’ân and to get benefit from this immense treasure, one needs to have a Qalb. Here one may say that everybody has a heart, then why does not every body understand the Qur’ân? The answer is that one needs a pure and live heart (i.e., Qalb) which can utilise its special capability of perceiving the Attributes of Allah Ta’ala and can unfold the curtain which otherwise obscures the view from the real meaning of the Qur’ânic message. Allah Ta’ala says in the Qur’ân:

فَمَنْ يُرِدِ اللَّهُ أَنْ يَهْدِيَهُ يَشْرَحْ صَدْرَهُ لِلْإِسْلَامِ وَمَنْ يُرِدْ أَنْ يُضِلَّهُ يَجْعَلْ صَدْرَهُ ضَيِّقًا حَرَجًا كَأَنَّمَا يَصَّعَّدُ فِي السَّمَاءِ كَذَلِكَ يَجْعَلُ اللَّهُ الرِّجْسَ عَلَى الَّذِينَ لَا يُؤْمِنُونَ

“ Those who Allah Ta’ala willeth to guide, He openeth their breast to Islam. Those whom He willeth to leave straying- He maketh their breast close and constricted As if they had to climb up to the skies, thus Doth Allah Ta’ala lay abomination on those who refuse to believe” (6:125)

In this verse Allah Ta’ala has linked His bestowing of guidance to somebody with opening of his breast for Islam. Since breast is the seat of Qalb, so its opening is the opening of Qalb for Islam. This process has been described as the enlightening of the heart with the Eternal Light. As Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) while explaining the above mentioned Qur’ânic verse says:

“Ibn-Masood (RA) narrated that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) recited ( the above mentioned verse) “ those whom Allah Ta’ala willeth to guide, He openeth their breast to Islam” then Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said when the light  (External) enters the breast it opens. He was asked, is there any sign by which this (Eternal Light) can be appreciated? he said,“ yes forsaking the world of deception and inclination towards the eternal world (Hereafter) and preparation for death.” (Mishkat)

In this Hadith, Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam), has clearly pointed out that enlightening of the heart with the Eternal Light means the opening of the heart. From the Aayat quoted above and the Hadith the inference can easily be derived that it is the enlightened heart (Qalb} that gets the guidance of Allah Ta’ala and can, therefore, perceive the Truth and the ultimate Reality. Now the question arises if the heart is not enlightened by this Eternal Light, then what?

Zulmat and Nur (Darkness and Light)

The opposite of the Light is Darkness. The Qur’ân has mentioned these as Nur and Zulmat respectively.

The heart which is not illuminated by the Eternal Light is said to be in darkness or  blind as Allah Ta’ala says in the  Qur’ânic verse, already quoted, that their (external) eyes are not blind but their hearts are blind. This darkness of heart (Qalb) is called Zulmat whereas the Eternal Light which enlightens the heart is called Nur. Allah Ta’ala reveals this in the Qur’ân:

اللَّهُ وَلِيُّ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا يُخْرِجُهُمْ مِنَ الظُّلُمَاتِ إِلَى النُّورِ وَالَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا أَوْلِيَاؤُهُمُ الطَّاغُوتُ يُخْرِجُونَهُمْ مِنَ النُّورِ إِلَى الظُّلُمَاتِ أُولَئِكَ أَصْحَابُ النَّارِ هُمْ فِيهَا خَالِدُونَ

“ Allah Ta’ala is the protector of those who have faith: From the depths of darkness He leads them forth into light.” (2:257)

Now if we recapitulate the Qur’ânic revelations and the saying of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) already quoted in the previous lines, we can easily come to the conclusion that the function of the Qalb is to perceive the Divine Attributes, appreciate the Ultimate Reality and to understand the message of the Qur’ân. If the Qalb is plunged into darkness, then obviously it is deprived of these functions and will be as good as dead. So, when a person has his Qalb in the depths of darkness, he cannot know the Truth, cannot understand the significance of the eternal life, cannot achieve Ma’ârifat of Allah Ta’ala and cannot even smell the fragrance of the meaning of the Qur’ân, not to speak of tasting and assimilating it. This person is like a frog in a well that is totally unaware of the vastness of this universe, as this frog thinks that the well in which it lives is the only world.

In medical terms, we are aware of two states of mind, conscious and subconscious states. Normally, in the majority of people the major portion of mind remains in subconscious state and only a little portion attains conscious state or else one can say that the major portion of mind remains in darkness and only a little portion gets enlightened. It is the conscious portion of mind that is utilised by man, therefore, the major portion of his mind remains un-utilised.

If one talks of neuro-anatomy and physiology of human brain, the modern medical science has yet succeeded in knowing the anatomy and physiology of only few centres of brain, a tip of an iceberg.  The mystery of tremendous ocean of the brain potential remains unexplored to the scientists of Medicine even today.

The same does not hold true about the great muslim research scholars. As Allah Ta’ala took them from the depths of darkness forth into the light which enlightened their subconscious state, converting that into conscious state. With this enlightenment their ratio of conscious state and sub-conscious state got reversed, their conscious state of mind  became so powerful that it gave them immense vision which could penetrate all the curtains that otherwise lie between the Reality and the Mind and between, the Qalb and the external eyes.

What is Qalb-part-3: Latent Qualities of a Man’s Qalb

Latent Qualities of a Man’s Qalb-Dr. Rafiq Ahmed

 Allah Ta’ala says

وَإِذْ أَخَذَ رَبُّكَ مِنْ بَنِي آدَمَ مِنْ ظُهُورِهِمْ ذُرِّيَّتَهُمْ وَأَشْهَدَهُمْ عَلَى أَنْفُسِهِمْ ألَسْتُ بِرَبِّكُمْ قَالُوا بَلَى شَهِدْنَا أَنْ تَقُولُوا يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ إِنَّا كُنَّا عَنْ هَذَا غَافِلِينَ

“When thy Lord drew forth from the children of Adam from their loins-their descendants and made them testify concerning themselves (Saying)”Am I not your lord (Who cherishes and sustains you) ? They said: Yea! We do testify (this) lest Ye should say on the Day of Judgment of this we were never mindful.” (7:172)

This verse provides an ample evidence of the fact that Allah Ta’ala has inculcated in the genes of a man the capacity necessary to recognize the Oneness of Allah Ta’ala, His supreme authority and the only Sustainer and Cherisher of the World. It is only after this highest spiritual capability given to Adam and his sons that Allah Ta’ala asked them to testify this.

There have been great men in the Islamic history like Zunun-Misri (RA) etc. who vividly recollected this day of covenant as if it had happened just that day itself. Zunun-Misri (RA), when asked if he remembered the covenant used to say:

“The scene of that Covenant is still in front of my eyes, the sound of those words is still ringing in my ears as if it has happened today itself.”

Since man, with all his excellences, is forgetful as well, so Allah Ta’ala sent His Messengers (AS) to this world to remind the mankind of this covenant which is already in its genes. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said in a hadith:

 “every child is born on the nature of Islam. His parents make him Jew, Christian or worshiper of fire”. (Bukhâri & Muslim Sharief)

The latent qualities of man’s Qalb in the light and darkness

Allah Ta’ala says in the Qur’ân:

أَفَمَنْ شَرَحَ اللَّهُ صَدْرَهُ لِلْإِسْلَامِ فَهُوَ عَلَى نُورٍ مِنْ رَبِّهِ فَوَيْلٌ لِلْقَاسِيَةِ قُلُوبُهُمْ مِنْ ذِكْرِ اللَّهِ أُولَئِكَ فِي ضَلَالٍ مُبِينٍ

“Is one whose heart Allah Ta’ala has opened to Islam, so that he received light from Allah Ta’ala. (No better than one hard hearted)? Woe to those whose hearts are hardened against the remembrance, of Allah Ta’ala! They are manifestly wandering (in error)”. (39:22)

It  is patently clear that knowledge of these things has been given to man and that he has been selected for the expression of all the Attributes of Allah Ta’ala and thus we have also come to know that man was busy in Mushahidah Haq in  Aalam-i-Arwah and that he has recognised and testified that Allah Ta’ala is his Sustainer, his Cherisher and One and the Only one Lord worth worshipping. When man is born and comes to this universe, these all qualities remain latent or concealed in him. In the verses of the Qur’ân quoted above, (Is one whose heart Allah Ta’ala has opened to Islam, so that he has received light from Allah Ta’ala? Allah Ta’ala again refers to these qualities of heart (Qalb). Those who receive the Divine Light, their latent qualities of Qalb get awakened and enlightened and thus become manifested. Their Qalb starts functioning in the presence of this Divine Light and becomes Muslim i.e., they understand the Qur’ân and recognise their Creator, Sustainer and Cherisher, Allah Ta’ala the Almighty and the Exalted.

Those who do not receive this Divine Light,  their latent qualities of Qalb do not get manifested, they remain in darkness and in the process their Qalb fails to function and hence neither understand the Qur’ân nor recognise their Creator, Sustainer, Cherisher, Allah Ta’ala the Almighty and the Exalted. Allah Ta’ala calls these hearts as hardened. They remain in darkness and fail to expand their spiritual understanding and to receive Allah Ta’ala’s Light. They travel in opposite direction. Just as there is spiritual progress for those who seek Allah Ta’ala, on the other hand there is more and more spiritual retrogression for those who close their hearts to Allah Ta’ala. Their hearts get hardened, and they allow less and less Allah Ta’ala’s Grace to penetrate within. But it is obvious that they flounder on the way and cannot walk with the firm steps of those whose hearts abound in faith.

It is, therefore, well said: Hardened hearts are the most hated things near Allah Ta’ala. Allah Ta’ala taught us this Dua in the Qur’ân:

رَبَّنَا لَا تُزِغْ قُلُوبَنَا بَعْدَ إِذْ هَدَيْتَنَا وَهَبْ لَنَا مِنْ لَدُنْكَ رَحْمَةً إِنَّكَ أَنْتَ الْوَهَّابُ

“O Lord! they say, let not our hearts deviate. Now after Thou has guided us, But grant us mercy from Thee. For Thou art the grantor of bounties without measure.” (3:8)

What is Qalb? part-5: The most blessed Qalb!

The most blessed Qalb which got the highest expansion and elevation

-Dr. Rafiq Ahmed

In the human history the most blessed Qalb which Allah Ta’ala selected for the highest purification, expansion and elevation was that of Muhammad-ur-Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam).

Allah Ta’ala says in the Qur’ân:

أَلَمْ نَشْرَحْ لَكَ صَدْرَكَ

“Have We not expanded thee thy breast?”. ( 94:1)

The breast is symbolically the seat of knowledge and the highest feelings of love and affection. It is the treasure house in which are stored the jewels of that quality of human character, which is divine. The Holy Prophet’s (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) human nature had been purified, expanded and elevated, so that he became the mercy for all the creation.

The Qalb of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) which is the most blessed got the highest Divine Light and he utilised the capabilities of Qalb to its maximum. All the latent faculties of Qalb got the highest illumination by the Divine Light and thus Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) attained the highest spiritual understanding and nearness to the ultimate Reality.

The Qur’ân is the Attribute of Allah Ta’ala and that the Attributes of Allah Ta’ala are immense and ultimate. Nothing in this universe had the capability of receiving this Divine Revelation. The Qalbs of all the men except that of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) could not attain this spiritual height which was necessary for being capable of receiving this divine revelation i.e., the Qur’ân. The Qalb of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) being the most blessed had this capability. It is said that if Allah Ta’ala would have sent this revelation directly to this universe, it would have got burnt down to ashes.

Allah Ta’ala had decided to express His divine revelation, He created this capability in the most blessed Qalb of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam).

Allah Ta’ala refers to this the most blessed Qalb of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) as follows:

وَإِنَّهُ لَتَنْزِيلُ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ () نَزَلَ بِهِ الرُّوحُ الْأَمِينُ () عَلَى قَلْبِكَ لِتَكُونَ مِنَ الْمُنْذِرِينَ ()

“Verily this is a revelation from the Lord of the worlds. With it came down the truthful spirit To thy heart that thou mayest admonish.” (26:192-194)

Qalb signifies not only the seat of affection, but also seat of memory and understanding. The process of inspiration is indicated by the impression of the divine message on the inspired one’s heart, memory and understanding from which it was promulgated in human speech to the world.

It is said that Jalaal of the Divine Revelation was tolerated and absorbed by the Qalb of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) which alone is the most blessed and when it was expressed through the blessed tongue of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) it is was Jamaal only, which the rest of the humanity and this universe could tolerate.

 The Seal of Prophethood

 The humanity reached its peak in the most distinguished self of Muhammad (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam). The Divine Light and knowledge was attained to its maximum possible limit by him. In other words, the quintessence of all the creation was achieved. Every Messenger of Allah Ta’ala was predominantly the seat of expression of one of the Attributes of Allah Ta’ala, but the greatest and the last Messenger of Allah Ta’ala, Muhammad (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) was the seat of the expression of all the Attributes of Allah Ta’ala . This way he completed the chain of Messengers and put a seal on the Prophethood. He utilised the faculties of Qalb to the utmost and got the Divine Light of the highest degree. He received the Divine revelation—the Qur’ân, therefore, no room was left for any other person to go higher than this and no deficiency was left in the level of knowledge that could be achieved by any human being.

Allah Ta’ala certifies this seal of prophethood by Muhammad (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) in the Qur’ân as:

مَا كَانَ مُحَمَّدٌ أَبَا أَحَدٍ مِنْ رِجَالِكُمْ وَلَكِنْ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ وَخَاتَمَ النَّبِيِّينَ وَكَانَ اللَّهُ بِكُلِّ شَيْءٍ عَلِيمًا

“Muhammad is not the father of any of your men, but (he is) the Messenger of Allah Ta’ala and the seal of prophets and Allah Ta’ala has full knowledge of all things”. (33:40)

Five things for true remembrance of Allah-Part-3

Star 4. Remembering the Torment and Wrath.

In order to fully remember Allah., we must remember His torment and wrath. It is not befitting of a believer to live his life thinking that Allah’s statements of punishment do not apply to him. Allah characterizes believers that they fear him. They do not fear Him because he is an intimidating God. They fear Him because they know He is Just and they are deserving of His punishment. In actuality they fear His torment but not Him personally. Scholars said when believers enter Jannah their love to Allah increases because they see Him and their fear ends because they receive total security. A believer does not fully remember Allah unless he remembers His statements of punishment and retribution. Allah wants us to know that He is severe in punishment.
{و اتقوا الله واعلموا أن الله شديد العقاب}

2:196 {protect yourselves from Allah and know that Allah is Severe in punishment.}
اعلموا أن الله شديد العقاب} الأنفال

8:25 {know that Allah is severe in punishment.}

اعلموا أن الله غفور رحيم و اعلموا أن الله شديد العقاب} المائدة

5:98 {Know that Allah is Forgiving, Merciful. And Know that Allah is severe in punishment.}

إن ربك سريع العقاب و إنه لغفور رحيم} الأنعام 165
6: 165 {Your lord is quick in punishment and He is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.}

نبئ عبادي أني أنا الغفور الرحيم و أن عذابي هو العذاب الأليم} الحجر

15: 49-50 {Inform my slaves that I am the Oft-Forgiving, the Most Merciful. And my torment is indeed the most painful torment.}
Believers who know the magnitude of Allah punishment stay way from disobeying Allah

{قل إني أخاف إن عصيت ربي عذاب يوم عظيم}

6:15 {Say: I fear the torment of a great day, if my Lord I disobey.}

This statement reflects how the mind-set of a believer should be. Whenever evil desires within a believer instigate him/her to do something sinful, or wherever the glitter of life entices a believer to a sinful practice, this Quranic truth should pop up to his mind’s screen.
Many people program their minds that when they are about to do something sinful to send the following message to their mind screen:
Do not worry, be happy, go ahead, because your God is Forgiving and Merciful.

This is not the correct message at this time.
The correct message is the one that stops the sinful practice, not the one that encourages the sinful practice. Thus, a believer does not fully remember Allah unless he remembers His punishment.

Five things for true remembrance of Allah- Part-1

TO TRULY REMEMBER ALLAH, WE MUST REMEMBER FIVE MATTERS:
(Taken from Abu Nour’s article)
One must remember all those five in order to be a five star believer

1. Remembering Allah’s names and attributes.

In order to remember Allah, we must remember His names and attributes which entails collecting them, call Allah by them, praise Allah by them and modeling our selves after them.

a-Collecting Allah’s names
Allah said:

قل ادعو الله أو ادعوا الرحمن إياً ما تدعوا فله الأسماء الحسنى

17:110{Say: Call upon Allah or call upon Him, the Most Beneficent (Allah), by whatever name you invoke Him, for Him belong the most beautiful names.}

Allah’s Messenger said:
[ إن لله تسعة وتسعين اسماً مائة إلا واحدا من أحصاها دخل الجنة]

[Ninety nine names, hundred but one, belongs to Allah. Whoever collects them enters Jannah.]

In another statement, he said

[من حفظها دخل الجنة]

[Whoever preserves, memorizes, them enter Jannah]

Collecting Allah’s names depends upon doing four things:

• memorize them.

• understand their meanings.

• comprehend their implications on your conduct.

• monitor your behavior based on your belief in them.

b- Praying through Allah’s names

Allah says:

{ولله الأسماء الحسنى فدعوه بها}

7:180 {The Beautiful Names (the Perfect Names) are Allah’s, so call Him by them.}

A person who invokes Allah should choose from His names the one that matches his request. If one wants guidance, he should use the name Alhaadee (the Guide). Likewise, if one wants forgiveness, he should use the name Alghafoor (the Forgiver)

c- Praising Allah with His names

For each name there is a unique way to praise Allah. The guided person is the one who Allah shows how to praise Him through all of His Names.

d- Modeling one’s character

Which means a person models himself after Allah’s attributes. When it comes to believing in Allah’s Names and attributes, a believer must clear his creed from any thoughts that Allah’s attributes resemble the attributes of the created order. A great deal of theological mistakes results from assuming that the conditions, limits, and bounds of our finite feeble existence apply to Allah. Allah’s nature is exclusive to Him. No one shares with Him His nature or resembles Him. In order to safeguard us from anthropomorphism, interpretation of divine attributes in terms of human characteristics, Allah said:

42:11{Nothing resembles Him.}

With this conviction being strongly fastened to our understandings, I say a person who remembers Allah should try to implement the likes of Allah’s attributes in himself. When a person successfully installs the like of Allah’s attributes in himself, this attribute will draw him nearer than ever to His Lord, and make him the object of the Divine love.
That does not mean a person can resemble Allah in His attributes because they are exclusive to Him. However, one ought to try and cultivate the likes of Allah’s attributes in him.
Allah is Merciful and loves the merciful.
Allah is knowledgeable and loves those who are knowledgeable.
Allah is Just and loves the just.
Allah is Beautiful and loves those who beautify themselves by obeying His Commands.
Allah is The Forgiver and loves those who forgive.
And, Allah is generous and loves the generous.

The point is that Allah loves His attributes, thus the most beloved to Him among His slaves are those who inculcate in themselves the attributes that He loves.
And the most disliked among His slaves are those characterized with the attributes that do not fit them or that Allah dislikes.
Some of Allah’s attributes are suitable for humans to have the likes of them, and some are not. The attributes that are not consistent with our status as slaves of Allah, are not suitable for us such as Pride and Majesty. The presence of these attributes in humans is oppression.

العزة إزاري و الكبرياء ردائي وفي روايه و العظمة ردائي فمن نازعني واحد منها احرقته بالنار      أحمد

[Glory is my lower garment and pride is my upper garment, in another narration, majesty is my upper garment who every tries to acquire one of them I burn him in the fire.]
However, the attributes of Mercy, Kindness, and Generosity are consistent with our status as slaves of the Greatest. Thus having such attributes qualify us to receive Allah’s love.
In order to remember Allah, we must remember His names and attributes which entails collecting them, call Allah by them, praise Allah by them and modeling our selves after them.

Five things for true remembrance of Allah- Part-2

Star 2. Remembering Allah’s Statements of orders and prohibition.

In order to remember Allah, we must remember Allah’s statements of commands and prohibition.
In proportion to how much a believer lives up to Allah’s commandments, he would be able to fight off temptation.
Allah wants you to be happy, satisfied, and content.
When you carry out Allah’s commands you capitalize on the opportunity to be the best you can be.
Happiness is the result of carrying out Allah’s commands.
Satisfaction is the product of carrying out Allah’s commands.
A tasteful life is the reward of carrying out Allah’s commands.
The more a person implements Allah’s commands in his life, the more satisfying and tasteful his life will be. The less a person implements Allah’s commands in his life, the less satisfying and tasteful his life will be. As an aid to devotion, a person must know that Allah’s commands bring good to him in this life and the Hereafter; and Allah’s prohibition safeguards him from harmful matters, theologies, and practices.
Allah, the Merciful One, did not prohibit things as a measure of punishment or deprivation but rather as a measure of protection from harm, and a shield from evil that safeguards us from destruction.
Star 3. Remembering Allah’s Bounties and Blessings.
In order to remember Allah, we must remember His bounties. He said

{ياأيها الناس اذكروا نعمت الله عليكم}

35:3 {O man kind remember Allah’s bounties on you.}

Remembering Allah’s bounties means to remember that Allah is the giver of all bounties. This mind set gives a believer an opportunity to be successful.
Allah said:

{ فذكروا آلآء الله لعلكم تفلحون}

7:69 {Thus remember Allah’s bounties upon you that you may be successful.}

Allah told us in the Quran that remembering Him brings success.
{ واذكروا الله كثيراً لعلكم تفلحون}

62:10 {Remember Allah much that you may be successful.}

Remembering Allah’s bounties blows on the heart like a fresh summer breeze that awakens and kindles Allah’s love in the heart of the one who is bounty-conscious.

The spiritually perfect Salaah (prayer)- (Imam Ghazali)

States Conducive to Perfecting The Life in Prayer (Inner Dimensions of Salaah)
These qualities can be expressed in many ways, but they are well summed up in six words, namely: awareness; understanding; reverence; awe; hope; shame.

Awareness

By conscious awareness we mean that state in which one’s mind and feelings are in no way distracted from what one is doing and saying. Perception is united with action and speech. Thoughts do not wander. When the mind remains attentive to what one is doing, when one is wholeheartedly involved, and when nothings makes one heedless, that is when one has achieved conscious awareness.

Understanding

Understanding the meaning of one’s words is something that goes beyond awareness, for one may be conscious of making an utterance, yet not be aware of the meaning of that utterance. What we mean by understanding, therefore, is an awareness that also includes comprehension of the meaning of one’s utterance. People differ in this respect, not sharing a common understanding of the Koran and the glorifications.
How many subtleties of meaning we have come to understand in the course of ritual prayer! Things that had never occurred to us before.
It is in this context that prayer becomes a deterrent to indecency and mischief, for the understanding it brings is a positive obstacle to vice.

Reverence

As for reverence, this is something beyond both awareness and understanding. A man may address his servant in full awareness of his speech, and understanding the meaning of his words, yet without reverence, for reverence is an additional element.

Awe

As for awe, it is over and above reverence. In fact, it represents a kind of fear that grows out of the latter. Without experiencing fear, one will not stand in awe. There is an ordinary fear of things we find repugnant, like scorpions or bad temper, but this is not called awe. What we call awe is the kind of fear we have of a mighty king. Awe is the kind of fear induced by a sense of majesty.

Hope

As for hope, this is unquestionably something else again. There are many who revere some king or other, and who are in awe of him or afraid of his power, yet do not hope to be rewarded by him. In our prayers, however, we must hope for the reward of Allah, High Exalted; just as we fear His punishment for our faults.

Shame

As for shame, it is something additional to all the rest, for it is based on the realization of one’s deficiencies and the apprehension of sin. It is quite possible to conceive of reverence, fear and hope, without this element of shame.

(From Imam Ghazali’s Ihya ul uloom)

Leaving good deeds due to fear (doubt) of Riya

The catastrophies of Riya (show off) are great. One should exert much to save one’s self from these calamities. But this should be remembered that this is also one of the ways of shaitan (satan) hijacking our niyyah and making us to leave the good deeds

(Aamal-e-Saliha) by putting an apprehension (waswasa) in our mind that we should not do a (particular) deed otherwise we will commit the (sin of) Riya. At this time one should reply the shaitan (while taking the note of this apprehension which shaitan has put in his mind) that the Riya takes place only when our aim is to show our deeds to Makhlooq so that they become pleased and when we enjoy this idea (that people are seeing our good deeds and they are becoming pleased with us). On the contrary, our condition is such that we consider this thing bad and want to get rid of it (whether it goes or not), then how is it Riya? After saying this, one should engage oneself with good deeds (Aamal-e-Saliha), one should not care even least about these apprehensions and evil suggestions (of shaitan).

You will experience these apprehensions few times

but then shaitan will get tired and will run away shamefully.

Maulana  Alhaafiz Imdad-Ullah (RA) used to say:”Riya does not remain always Riya, firstly it is Riya, then it becomes a habit, and from habit it becomes Ibaadat and Ikhlas. “

It means that we should not bother about the Riya which

gets committed without any purpose and should not leave the Aamal-e-Saliha because of this.

-Taken from Furu-ul-Iman by Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi (RA)

The one common goal of all and the only way to achieve it!

I have tried to find one goal which everyone would agree to be excellent and worthy of being striven after. I have found one only: to be free from anxiety. When I reflected upon it, I realized that not only do all agree in valuing it and desiring it, but I also perceived that, despite their many different passions and aspirations and preoccupations and desires, they never make the slightest gesture unless it is designed to drive anxiety far away. One man loses his way, another comes close to going wrong, finally another is successful – but he is a rare man, and success is rare, [O, all-knowing God].
Dispelling anxiety is a goal upon which all nations agree from the time when the Almighty created the world until the day when this world will pass away and be followed by the Day of Judgment – and their actions are directed to this goal alone. In the case of every other objective there will always be some people who do not desire it.
For example, some people are not religious and do not take eternity into account.
There are some who by nature and inclination prefer obscurity to fame [the obscurity of satisfied passion].
There are some who have no interest in amassing a fortune, preferring abstinence to ownership; this was the case with many of the Prophets. God’s peace be upon them – and those who followed their example, ascetics and philosophers. There are some who by nature dislike sensual pleasures and scorn those who seek after them, such as those men we have just mentioned, and who prefer to lose a fortune rather than gain one. Some prefer ignorance to knowledge, in fact most of the people that you see in the street are like this. These are the objectives of people who have no other aim in life. Nobody in the whole world, from the time of its creation until its end, would deliberately choose anxiety, and would not desire to drive it far away.

When I had arrived at this great piece of wisdom, when I had discovered this amazing secret, when Allâh the Almighty had opened the eyes of my mind [spirit] to see this great pleasure, I began to search for the way which would truly enable me to dispel anxiety, that precious goal desired by every kind of person, whether ignorant or scholarly, good or evil. I found it in one place alone, in the action of turning towards God the Almighty and Powerful, in pious works performed with an eye to eternity.

Thus the only reason that someone chases after riches is to dispel the anguish of poverty. The only reason that someone seeks fame is to dispel the anxiety of seeing someone else outdo him. The only reason that someone chases after pleasures is to dispel the anxiety of missing them. The only reason someone chases after knowledge is to dispel the anxiety of being ignorant about something.

People enjoy listening to other people’s conversation and gossip only because it dispels the anxiety of being alone and isolated. People eat, drink, make love, wear clothes, play games, build a shelter, mount a horse, go for a walk, only in order to avoid the reverse of all these actions and every other kind of anxiety.
In all the actions listed here, anyone who pauses to reflect will see that anxieties inevitably occur, such as problems which arise in the course of the action, the impossibility of performing the impossible, the fleeting nature of any achievements, and the inability to enjoy something because of some difficulty. There are also bad consequences which arise from every success: fear of one’s rival, attacks by the jealous, theft by covetous, loss to an enemy, not to mention criticism, sin and such things. On the other hand, I have found that actions performed with an eye on eternity are free from * every kind of * fault, free from every stain, and a true means of dispelling anxiety. I have found that the man who is striving for eternity may be sorely tested by bad fortune on his way but does not worry; on the contrary, he is glad, because the trial to which he is subjected gives rise to hope, which aids him in his endeavour and sets him the more firmly on the path towards his true desire. I have found that, when he finds his way blocked by an obstacle, he does not worry, because it is not his fault, and he did not choose the actions that he will have to answer for. I have seen such a man be glad, when others have wished evil upon him, and be glad when has undergone some trial, and be glad, always [living] in a permanent state of joy while others are permanently the opposite. You should therefore understand that there is only one objective to strive for, it is to dispel anxiety; and only one path leads to this, and that is the service of the Most High God. Everything else is misguided and absurd.

Do not use your energy except for a cause more noble than yourself. Such a cause cannot be found except in * Almighty * God Himself!

Taken from: Al-Akhlâq wa’l-Siyar By Ibn Hazm al-Andaloosee

Salaah of the spiritually awakened!- (Hikam Ibn Ata’illah)

“Namaaz-e-Haqeeqi (True Salaah) purifies the heart from the pollution of ghairullah (things other than Allah) and opens up the door of spiritual mysteries (asraar). Namaaz is the substratum
(mahl) for secret discussion and the abode of love and sincerity. During Namaaz
the fields of the heart expand for spiritual mysteries and the stars of celestial
light (Anwaar) dazzle therein.”- Hikam Ibn Ata’illah 

Commentary-
The hearts of the chosen servants of Allah are perpetually absorbed in His remembrance. However, association with people and tending to natural needs produce a kind of ghaflat (carelessness) and a relationship with beings other than Allah. As a result, the hearts become contaminated. But when they engross themselves in Namaaz, their hearts are cleansed of the foreign pollution. The Divine Perception is then again restored to their hearts in accordance with their respective ranks.
When the foreign veils are removed from their hearts, thus eliminating the impediments, the doors of hidden Divine Mysteries and the secrets of Divine Knowledge open up on their hearts during Namaaz. Thus, their Namaaz becomes the substratum for communion with their Rabb. Their hearts becomes imbued with sincerity and love, leaving no room whatever for anything besides Allah.
Their hearts expand for the intake of Divine Mysteries. There remains then not the slightest vestige of fear or constriction in their hearts. For these illustrious servants, anwaar (celestial illumination) glitter like stars in their Namaaz. They perceive this illumination with the eyes of the heart.
Every Mu’min should strive to perform such Namaaz (as described above).
-Taken from Ikmalus-shiyam

SEEK ONLY ALLAH’S PLEASURE IN WHATEVER YOU DO!

SEEK ONLY ALLAH’S PLEASURE IN WHATEVER YOU DO!
Your devotion to your own self and to your family is a reflection of your ignorance. I do not say that you leave your family and go to the mountains for meditation. But I only ask you to look after your children to attain Allah’s pleasure, that is, do not love them to serve your ardent desires but do it to please Allah. Give respite to your desire and seek the Mercy and nearness of Allah. Your work should not be for your happiness or others but it should be to please Allah.

Because the glory of Allah in all situations is pure of infidelity. The deeds of sin are returned to the infidels and thrown at their faces, and the deeds of the faithful are accepted by Allah. Remember! Divine worship is a pure deed.

And Allah commands those who wish to attain His proximity, they should do noble deeds and should not associate any one with Allah in worship.
-Shaykh Syed Ahmed Rifai RA (Al Burhan al Muaiyad p 101).

Gaining The Attention of Allah

Gaining The Attention of Allah

Hazrat Shaykh Maulana Mohammed Nabeel Ahmed Khan Sahib

“One thing that a person should do is try to gain the focus and attention of Allah Ta’ala upon themselves. If they have that, then they have everything. If they don’t have that, they can have everything, but yet it amounts to nothing. To gain His attention, we should try to resemble Rasulullah (S) as much as possible. This should be the ultimate goal of a person. In doing so, there are a few things in which if a person does, the rest of the deen becomes easy for him:

1) Proper recitation of the Qur’an.

In order to develop a Ta’alluq with Allah Ta’ala, one needs to know what Allah Ta’ala is saying and to have Him speak to them. Qur’an is the speech of Allah, so one must make sure that they know how to recite it properly. This can be done by finding a person who knows and learning from them, even if they have to start from the very beginning. In the methodology that we follow, one of the main things is that everything has to be perfect, and the thing that deserves the most perfection is the Qur’an. It comes in a Hadith that “Allah Ta’ala likes that the Qur’an be recited in the manner that it was revealed.” By reciting it properly, we are firstly doing something that Allah Ta’ala likes, and secondly following a sunnah. It can become very easy to put this off, but ask yourself, are you too busy to take out time for the Book of Allah? Recitation of the Qur’an is the first step in developing a relationship with Allah. Apart from learning how to recite the Qur’an, a person should take out time to understand what is in the Qur’an. This should be done under the supervision of an appropriate scholar of Deen. A person must make sure that they have a proper relationship with the Qur’an, and that it should be appropriately recited and understood.

2) Keeping a full beard.

Once a person establishes a relationship with the word of Allah Ta’ala, Allah needs a reason to continue the conversation because He can also very easily take the tawfeeq away. One should resemble Rasulullah (S) as much as he can because the more they do that, the more they become beloved in Allah’s sight. One of the ways of doing this is to grow the beard a fist length from all sides. A person may say that they are not pious enough to grow a beard, but one should do it anyways. Beards are not meant for pious people, beards are meant for men. A male lion will always have a beard- it is a sign of manliness. For those men who don’t have one, they need to decide their gender or lack thereof. Nabi (S) said that “My Lord Allah commanded me to grow my beard and shorten my mustache.” A person without a beard is in a state of perpetual sin until he grows his beard out. For females, in order to get the same reward, they should develop an atmosphere in which people do have beards. Develop that attitude in which the environment becomes such that it changes the rules. With those men whom you are allowed to have a relationship with, slip it in here and there. Another way for them to practice this particular aspect of the sunnah is to apply the concept of hijab. Because a woman who covers herself properly tolerates many discomforts, the reward may be the same if not more.

3) Uncovering the ankles.

Males should keep their ankles uncovered from the top down. If one desires their ankles to be covered, they can cover them from the bottom up, eg: with socks. There are four punishments for three different people, the first of whom is the one who covers his ankles. Allah Ta’ala wont speak to them, look at them, or purify them and they will have a great punishment. Nabi (S) said “Whatever is covering the ankles will be in the fire.” If your feet are in jahannam, the rest of your body will also be there.

4) Guard the gaze.

The other things are things that affect us externally. But we also have things that effect us internally, we have pathways into our hearts. So the main thing a person should do is guard their gaze. This is such a delicate matter, that Allah Ta’ala didn’t even deem it appropriate to address it Himself. He addresses Rasulullah (S) to, “Tell the believing men that they should lower their gazes and guard their private parts.” as well as the believing women. If you guard your gaze, then you won’t be involved in the second part of the ayat which involves any haraam act with the private parts. If you don’t guard your gaze, then you will. The easy way to get away from it is to just learn to lower your gaze. If you can’t lower your gaze, then sit in the company of those who do and eventually it will rub off on you. A person must have the attitude that “Look, I need to do this. I dont care if I die, I’ll die,” in order to live their lives properly. Nabi (S) says “May Allah Ta’ala’s curse be on the one who looks and is looked at.” It doesn’t matter whether it is a girl or a guy, if you put yourself in that situation then it’s your fault. Allah Ta’ala then says that, “This is the purest for you” and then at the end, “Allah knows exactly what you do.” He knows exactly how one looks, how they walk, what the intention is, and where the mind is going, etc. There is no escaping Allah Ta’ala. Just stay away from it and you won’t have these issues. If a person learns to be content with whatever Allah has given them then they won’t worry about other things. But if all of a sudden a person is driving on the road and they see other nice cars and worry about what other people are driving, then what’s going to happen? They’re going to crash and burn.

5) Protecting the heart.

This is a very broad and general point, but nonetheless it is still important. It is that a person needs to make sure that there is nothing, but Allah Ta’ala in their heart. When you take out everything else from your heart, then Allah Ta’ala will come in. Allah Ta’ala’s ghayrah is unlimited, He won’t enter a heart when there are other things in it. However, any permissable type of love (for your mother, husband, wife, etc) is included in the love of Allah Ta’ala because you love those people because Allah Ta’ala tells you to. But at the end, a real believer, his love for Allah is more. You can love anything you want but more love should be for Allah Ta’ala. Allah Ta’ala won’t enter a heart that hasn’t been broken in. In a Hadith Qudsi, Allah says “I am with the broken hearted.” That means that a person will yearn for Allah to enter their heart so much that it actually hurts them. Allah Ta’ala enters the heart in that manner.

Every single thing that has been mentioned requires some level of exertion. Some require a lot, some require less, but nonetheless they all require some exertion. A person cannot gain any closeness to Allah Ta’ala without putting in some time and effort. Allah Ta’ala doesn’t come automatically without going through any difficulties. For example, look at the Prophets. Every Nabi went through problems because when Allah Ta’ala loves a person, then He sends problems their way. Rasulullah (S) said that “Whoever loves me, poverty will come to them like a flood.” Not just poverty, but difficulties as well. The people whom Allah Ta’ala loves the most are the Ambiyaa, and “The people who have had it the worst in terms of difficulties are the prophets, then those who resemebled the prophets, and those who resemble them.” We see people going through problems and difficulties, but understand there is also a type of enjoyment they feel while going through it that nobody else knows unless they have tasted it themselves. It is like one who enjoys spicy food. On the outside, one may be tearing up and feeling pain and onlookers may wonder why they are eating it. But the person eating, they know the enjoyment they are getting from it and they don’t want to stop. A person who for the sake of Allah does these things, then they don’t want to stop even though there are many opportunites in which they can.

The easiest way to get everything that was mentioned is to be in the company of those who are pious. If a person doesn’t have that then they haven’t even tasted a drop of the Ma’arifat of Allah Ta’ala. Those who have no touch with the Ahle-Taqwa, they haven’t even tasted a droplet of the Ma’arifat of Allah Ta’ala because if they don’t even know the creation of Allah then how are they supposed to know Allah Ta’ala Himself? Keep the company of the righteous and then you won’t have to worry about bad company. Those friends who do not want to see you become a better person are not really your friends, they are your enemies.

We only have one life to live, so make the most of it. This isn’t all of Deen, but if a person does these few hard things, then everything else will come easily. It is just that simple. If it was something that was impossible, then Allah Ta’ala wouldn’t have told us to do it in the first place.

Allah Ta’ala grant us all the tawfeeq to bring these things within our lives and to really become an embodiment of the sunnah Rasulullah (S). Ameen!

Gaining The Attention of Allah..

Five things for true remembrance of Allah-Part-4

Star 5. Remembering the Aakhirah (Hereafter).

A believer does not fully remember Allah unless he remembers the (Aakhirah) Last Day and its joys and horror. The Last Day of each person starts with his death.
Allah’s Messenger said:
[ نهيتكم عن زيارة القبور فزورها فإنها تذكرة]

[I forbade you from visiting graveyards, but visit them because visitation to graveyard is a reminder.]

Remember the instant your soul will depart from your body. Remember what kind of angels will come to remove your soul: the angels of torment, about whom Allah said:

ولو ترى إذ الظلمون في غمرات الموت والملائكة باسطوا أيديهم أخرجوا أنفسكم اليوم تجزون عذاب الهون بما كنتم تقولون على الله غير الحق و كنتم عن آياته تستكبرون

6:93{And if you had seen when the unjust shall be in the agonies of death and the angels are stretching forth
their hands saying: Give up your souls; today shall you be recompensed with an ignominious chastisement because you spoke against Allah other than the truth and (because) you showed pride against His verses.}

Or the angels of Mercy, about whom Allah said:

{ إن الذين قالوا ربنا الله ثم استقموا تتنـزل عليهم الملائكة ألا تخافوا و لا تحزنوا و ابشروا بالجنة التي كنتم توعدون}

41:30 {As for those who say: Our Lord is Allah, and afterward are upright the angels descend upon them, saying: Fear not, nor grieve, and bear good tidings of the gardens which you were promised.}
Remember your soul’s journey in the skies and contemplate if heaven’s doors would open to your soul, or if it would be banned from entering heaven’s door.
Remember the time when Munkar and Nakeer, two blue blackish angels, would question you in your grave. They would yell at you and sit you up in your grave and ask you, who is your Lord? What is your religion? And who is your prophet? Simple questions, but in the grave only the truthful will be able to answer.
Remember the squeeze of the grave and whether it would expand as far as one can see, or it would tighten until the ribs of its occupant break.
Remember if your deeds would appear to you in the image of a handsome, nicely dressed, sweet-smelling man, he would deliver to you glad tidings. But, if your deeds appear to you in the image of an hideous man whose clothing is ugly, and smell is foul, then he would deliver to you bad news.
Remember whether a window from paradise would open on your grave, so you would receive from it the fragrance and the breeze of Jannah. Or a window from hell would open on your grave, so you would receive from it the heat and wind of hell.
Remember whether you would every morning and evening see your seat in Jannah, or you would see every morning and evening your place in hell.
Remember whether you would say after you see your seat in Jannah , O Lord let the Hour come, or you would say, after you see your place in hell, O Lord do not let the Hour come.
Remember when the trumpet will be blown and the souls will be installed in the bodies and the people will be resurrected to stand before the Lord.
Remember when people will be grouped in one flat area and the sun will come near upon them. Remember whether you would be comfortable in the shade or you would be distressed in your sweat to your ankles, or to your knees, or to your waist, or to your mouth.
Remember when you will be exposed before Allah not a secret of yours will be hidden. And remember the reckoning, and whether you would receive an easy reckoning and turn to your family happily, or receive a difficult reckoning and invoke destruction.
Remember the scale and whether your scale will be heavy with good deeds so your living will be joyous, or your scale will be light due to deficiency in good deeds so your living will be in hell.
Remember when the records will be given, and whether you would receive your record in your right hand and say here I am, read my book, surly I knew that I should meet my reckoning, then you will be in blissful state in a high garden whereof the clusters are in easy reach,
or you would receive your record in your left hand then you would say I wish I did not receive my book, nor I knew my reckoning , I wish death was the end, my wealth has not availed me, my power has gone from me.
Remember whether you would drink from the Prophet’s (SAWS) pool or you would be kept off of it.
Remember crossing the bridge over hell and the hooks that snatch people off the bridge according to their deeds. Remember your pace crossing the bridge, would it be like a blink of an eye, or like thunder, or wind, the speed of bird, or a horse, or in jogging speed, or walking speed, or crawling speed. Remember whether you would be saved, or the hooks will cut you, scratch you, than release you, or cut you, scratch you and than immerse you in fire.
Remember whether you would enter Jannah with the first group bright as the full moon, or with the second group shining like the bright star, or you enter Jannah without reckoning , or after easy reckoning, or after hard reckoning and burning in hell until blackened then you will be removed with those who have eemaan that weighs one golden coin.
or you will removed with those who have eemaan that weighs half golden coin.
Or you will be removed with those who have eemaan that weighs one seed of barley.
Or you will be removed with those who have eemaan that weighs one seed of oat.
Or you will be removed with those who have eemaan that weighs the smallest, smallest, smallest mustard seed.
Or you will be removed from hell with those about whom Allah says:
{By my honor, greatness and superiority I will remove from it whoever said there is no god but Allah.}
Then water from Jannah will be poured on those burnt people so they rejuvenate and then they will enter Jannah and those will be know as aljahannameyoon.
Or you may enter the great fire in which you would not live nor die every time the skin is cooked, they will be given a new skin to experience the pain again. Remember whether you would drink form the springs of Jannah, from the rivers of wine, milk, water, and pure honey, and eat from the fruit of Jannah and drink wine from golden and sliver cups, or you would drink from the flaming water in hell and eat from the zaqoom tree , a tree that grows from the bottom of hell, its crops as if they were the heads of devils, they will eat from it until they fill their bellies and afterward thereupon they have a drink of boiling water that boil like molten brass. It seethes in their bellies. This is the food of the sinners.

Remember will you be deprived for eternity from seeing your Lord, or you would be in Jannah near your Lord whence you see Him.
Imagine yourself in paradise enjoying all amenities, all the luxuries, all the blessings, all the pleasant things,
When you see you Lord, you will forget everything you may be experiencing at that moment, because the pleasure that is derived from the bliss of paradise amounts to nothing in comparison to the pleasure that is derived from seeing the “Face” of your Lord.
The utopia of happiness in Jannah is attained when the people of Jannah see their Lord with their eyes. Allah’s Messenger said:

‏ إِذَا دَخَلَ أَهْلُ الْجَنَّةِ الْجَنَّةَ – قَالَ – يَقُولُ اللَّهُ تَبَارَكَ وَتَعَالَى تُرِيدُونَ شَيْئًا أَزِيدُكُمْ فَيَقُولُونَ أَلَمْ تُبَيِّضْ وُجُوهَنَا أَلَمْ تُدْخِلْنَا الْجَنَّةَ وَتُنَجِّنَا مِنَ النَّارِ – قَالَ – فَيَكْشِفُ الْحِجَابَ فَمَا أُعْطُوا شَيْئًا أَحَبَّ إِلَيْهِمْ مِنَ النَّظَرِ إِلَى رَبِّهِمْ عَزَّ وَجَلّ‏

[When the people of Jannah enter Jannah, Allah, the hallowed, the most high will say to them do you wish to have more of any thing? They will say you honored us and admitted us to Jannah and saved us from the fire. Then Allah removes the veil, nothing is more beloved to them than viewing their Lord.] Muslim

Only when we live with a heart that knows Allah and remembers Him accurately, we can lead our lives according to Allah’s desire and not our personal whims and fancies. Living this way starts with accepting Prophet Muhammad SAWS as our role model.

لقد كان لكم في رسول الله اسوة حسنةلمن كان يرجوا الله و اليوم الأخر و ذكر الله كثيرا

33:21 {Certainly you have in the Apostle of Allah an excellent example for him who hopes in Allah and the last day and remembers Allah much.}

Reasons behind Disobedience -Imam Ibn Qayyim

Reasons behind Disobedience -Imam Ibn Qayyim

Reasons behind Disobedience
-Imam Ibn Qayyim

The foundation of sins, the small of them and the great, is three:

  1. Shirk, associating partners with Allah (swt), which is the heart’s attachment to other than Allah (swt).
  2. Dhulm, oppression and injustice, which is from obeying the furious rage in the hearts.
  3. Fawahish, indecency and illicit acts, which is from the strong desires and lusts.

The height of Shirk is to worship others besides Allah (swt). The height of rage is killing. The height of lusts is fornicating. This is why Allah (swt) has combined these three in one ayah (verse),

25:68
“And those who do not invoke with Allah another deity or kill the soul which Allah has forbidden [to be killed], except by right, and do not commit unlawful sexual intercourse. And whoever should do that will meet a penalty.” (Qur’an, 25:68)

These sins lead to each other. Associating partners with Allah (shirk) leads to oppression and injustice (dhulm) and immorality (fawahish), just as sincerity (ikhlas) and Oneness of Allah (tawheed) wipes them out. Allah (swt) says,

12:24
“…And thus [it was] that We should avert from him evil and immorality. Indeed, he was of Our chosen servants.” (Qur’an, 12:24)

‘Evil’ (in this ayah) refers to attachment to other than Allah (swt), and ‘immorality’ refers to fornication.
Likewise, oppression and injustice leads to associating partners with Allah and immorality. Associating partners with Allah is the most unjust of injustices just as worshiping Allah Alone is the most just of justice. So justice accompanies the Oneness of Allah and oppression accompanies associating partners with Allah.
As for justice accompanying tawheed, it is proved in the ayah:

3:18
“Allah witnesses that there is no deity except Him, and [so do] the angels and those of knowledge – [that He is] maintaining [creation] in justice.” (Qur’an, 3:18)

And as for oppression accompanying associating partners with Allah, it is proved in the ayah:

31:13
“…Indeed, association [with him] is great injustice.” (Qur’an, 31:13)

Likewise, immorality leads to associating partners with Allah (swt) and injustice, because when the intention (to commit immorality) is strong, it will lead to oppression and relying upon magic and Satan.
Allah (swt) has connected fornication and associating partners with Him in the ayah,

24:3
“The fornicator does not marry except a [female] fornicator or polytheist, and none marries her except a fornicator or a polytheist, and that has been made unlawful to the believers.” (Qur’an, 24:3)

These three deeds (associating partners with Allah, injustice and immorality) gravitate towards each other, and one necessitates the other. This is why whenever the heart is weakest in tawheed and greater in associating with Allah, it is at its most immoral state and it is attached to committing these deeds and their results.
The analogy of this is contained in the series of ayat,

42:36
“So whatever thing you have been given – it is but [for] enjoyment of the worldly life. But what is with Allah is better and more lasting for those who have believed and upon their Lord rely.” (Qur’an, 42:36)

Allah (swt) tells us here that He has prepared something better than this worldly life for those who believe and rely upon Him – this is referring to tawheed. Then He says,

42:37
“And those who avoid the major sins and immoralities, and when they are angry, they forgive.” (Qur’an, 42:37).

These people avoid immoralities, which means they stay away from strong desires and lusts. Furthermore, they forgive even when they have a furious rage in their hearts. Allah (swt) connects tawheed to chastity and justice, which is the combination of all that is good.

-Taken from Imam Soheb Web’s site

ZUHD- Minimising the material possessions..

ZUHD- Minimising the material possessions

ZUHD
Allah Ta’ala states:
“… So that you do not grieve over what you have lost nor become proud over what you have.”
Rasulullah Sallallahu alayhi wasallam said:
“The first virtue of this Ummat is Yaqeen (firm faith) and zuhd, and the first corruption of this Ummat is Bukhl (niggardliness) and amal (distant and remote hopes).” (Baihaqi)
Nature of Zuhd
Zuhd is to refrain from an object of desire in the pursuit of a nobler objective, e.g. refraining from the desire of the world and pursuing the desire of the Aakhirat. This is Zuhd.
The basis of Zuhd is the Noor and ilm which Allah Ta’ala inspires into the heart of man. As a result, his breast expands and he realises with clarity that the world with all its belongings is more contemptible than the wing of a fly and that only Aakhirat is noble and everlasting. When this Noor is acquired, the -worthlessness of the world fully dawns upon man. The effect of Zuhd is the attainment of contentment upon the obtainal of the bare necessities of life. Thus the Zahid (the one who has Zuhd) is satisfied with the bare necessities in the same way as the traveller is satisfied with the necessities which he takes along on his sojourn.
 
Zuhd is not total abstention from pleasures. Reduction of pleasures is sufficient for the attribute of Zuhd. In other words. one should not be engrossed in pleasures. Constantly hankering after luxuries is negatory of Zuhd. On the contrary, obtainal of luxuries without undue effort and arrangement is the Ni’mat of Allah Ta’ala, for which shukr (gratefulness) has to be offered. Along with granting comfort to the nafs, effort too should be imposed on it.
In all truth, gold and silver and the world with all its possessions, in the sight of one whose gaze is focused on Allah, are of no value. Rasulullah Sallallahu alayhi wasallam never preferred the world for himself nor for those close to him. Whatever creation possesses is the material of the world. It is essential to sever one’s hope from all things. He who is successful in this objective, will attain tranquillity, because both heart and body find rest and peace in Zuhd.
The manner in which to acquire Zuhd is to meditate on the defects, harms and ephemeral nature of the world, as well as to reflect on the benefits and the everlasting nature of the Aakhirat.
-(taken from Shariah and Tariqat by Maulana Masihullah Khan RA)

Turn to Allah with Shukr

Turn to Allah with Shukr (Gratefulness) for continuinty of His bounties

A man who is not turned towards Allah Ta’ala through the medium of His kindness
and bounties, will be dragged with the chains of trials to face Allah.

Those servants in whom nobility and lofty intelligence are inherent, do not become proud and arrogant as a result of the bounties of Allah they are awarded. They do not lose themselves in indolence, unmindfulness and worldly love. The bounties serve to increase their love for their True Benefactor. In consequence they become engrossed in obedience and worship.
Those who consider these bounties as the goal to pursue, do not direct their attention to Allah Ta’ala. Consequently they are caught up in many trials and hardships. These misfortunes act like chains by means of which these recalcitrant servants are forcibly drawn to Allah Ta’ala. In this way they are accepted by Allah Ta’ala. Thus, the trials and hardships are in reality a blessing for them.
He who does not express gratitude for Allah’s bounties, has initiated the process of their elimination, and he who is grateful has arranged a solid protection for the bounties.
The one who is not grateful for the bounties of Allah Ta’ala is in reality pursuing the elimination of the bounties. Shukr (gratitude) envisages abandonment of transgression and adoption of obedience. Only The One Being should be acknowledged as the bestower of all bounties. Ingratitude leads to the disappearance of the ni’mat (bounties).
The one who is grateful for the bounties and recognises the True Bestower, is ensured of the perpetuation of the favours of Allah. In fact, the favours will be increased. In this regard, Allah Ta’ala states in the Qur’aan:
“If you are grateful, most certainly I shall increase (the bounties) for you. And, if you are ungrateful, then (know) that My punishment is severe.”
Occasionally darkness settles over you so that you understand and appreciate the bounties of your spiritual illumination.
The condition of the bandah here on earth is not always the same. Sometimes the noor of obedience settles on him while at times the darkness of the contamination of desires and unmindfulness settles in his heart. If only the illumination of anwaar had to settle on him, he would not have known its value. Also, the reality of noor is understood from its opposite, viz. darkness (zulmat). When there is no appreciation, the bandah will not express Shukr to his Master. For this reason sometimes the darkness of ghaflat and shahwat settles on the Saalik so that he values the noor of obedience.
He who has not recognised the worth of bounties while they exist (with him), will recognise it after elimination of the bounties.
There are innumerable ni’maat of Allah Ta’ala on man at every moment. He is engulfed by bounties. However, most people fail to appreciate the bounties and remain ungrateful. Some even complaint about Allah Ta’ala and always remain dissatisfied. Such people will only appreciate the value of bounties after they have been snatched away. (They imply complaint by displaying dissatisfaction and greed – Translator.)

-Taken from Ikmalus Shiyam commentary on Hikam of Ibn Ata’illah Iskandari R.A.