Friday, April 08, 2011
Spiritual Luminance and Islamic Manners
People of wisdom state:
The sun radiates heat and light to everybody. People make use of them and continue living. Though all beings on earth benefit from the sun, it never says, "You warm up thanks to me, and it is I that provide you with light." So is the case with Islamic superiors. Though they emit fayd [outpouring that flow from the guide’s heart to a heart, which thus gains motion, purity, and exaltation] to the whole world, they use such expressions as "This weak person" or "This faqir [the one who recognizes his complete dependence on Allah in all of his affairs]" or "We are nothing" to refer to themselves. We, Muslims who hold the creed of Ahl as-Sunnah wa’l-Jama‘ah, know the Sun [the spiritual guide showing the path]. Furthermore, we know such suns as Shah-i Naqshband, Imam-i Rabbani, and Mawlana Khalid-i Baghdadi. We owe everything we have, including our faith, to these superiors. If we had not known them, how would our lives be now? We would be worse than other people.
Our Master the Prophet stated, "Mercy descends where the pious are mentioned." From this mercy, a person whose pot is completely open gets much, and another person whose pot is slightly open gets a little. However, the one whose pot is upside down does not get any. The coming of mercy and fayd is beyond the power of humans.
The coming of fayd
Fayd is like sunbeams and it sends light everywhere. Fayd certainly flows from those superiors. Receiving or not receiving it is within the power of humans. In fact, fayd comes up to the level of the chest, but there are some requirements to be fulfilled in order for it to gain access:
1. To believe that fayd is coming,
2. To have a firm belief in the greatness of the person from whom the fayd flows,
3. To love the person from whom fayd flows, that is, to be obedient to what he instructs,
4. To perform obligatory religious duties and to abstain from forbidden things,
5. To be respectful and well mannered toward that person to the utmost. This last requirement is the most important and the most difficult one because it is stated that anyone who does not observe [the Islamic manners called] aadaab cannot win the pleasure of Allahu ta'ala, nor can he become His friend.
In this context, Hadrat Imam-i Rabbani said:
"Among all kinds of acts of worship and perfections that bring one closer to Allahu ta'ala, suhbah [being in the presence of a spiritual guide and his delivering religious speeches and their being listened to by those in attendance] is ranked first, but its condition is heavy. This condition is the adherence to the manners. If one transgresses the manners by as much as an atom's weight, one cannot derive benefit."
Obeying orders and manners
Manners are two kinds: (1) to know one's place; (2) to obey orders, to perform what one is told. Our religious superiors stated, "Al amr-u fawq al-adab." That is, obeying an order is above observing manners because following an order is the highest of good manners.
The essence of the path of Islamic superiors is manners. We may do excellent and highly beneficial deeds, but they are of no avail, of no use if they have not been done in compliance with manners. As a matter of fact, Hadrat Shah-i Naqshband declared, "The essence, the beginning, the middle, and the end of this path is manners."