Qabdh: Spiritual contraction


An individual complained that from many days I feel as though the special relationship with Allah (nisbet) has been lifted from me. There remains no interest in the daily wird and worship.

Shaykh Sayyid Zawwar Hussain Shah (Allah have mercy on him) said,

‘This is not the removal of nisbet. This state is called the spiritual contraction (qabdh).

The nisbet is removed by committing infidelity (kufr), associating partners with Allah (shirk), involvement in innovations (bida’) and major sins (kabair).

Whereas, the state of qabdh afflicts all including the novice and the advanced spiritual traveler. When it occurs the individual considers that this might be due to indulgence in sinful acts and therefore repents. In fact the repentance done in this state is much more sincere  than done in the state of spiritual expansion (bast).

Whenever afflicted by qabd one should increase in repentance, recite la hawla wa la quwwata illa biallah in abundance and continue with the daily wird and worship with extra effort. There should be no absence from these daily activities, even accomplishing a portion of them will suffice.’

Mahnama Tamir e ifkar, eshaet khas bayad Shaykh Syed Zawwar Hussain Shah (Allah have mercy on him), page 606-7