Category Archives: A. Reality of Tasawwuf

The nature, definition, goals and principles of Tasawwuf

The blockades in sulook – 1

A novice seeker wrote,

Next ~3 days: Suddenly I began feeling the daily routine as a burden. I did not feel like doing Zikr, or reading Quran, or praying any Salaah beyond the Fard, and I was getting increasing ‘khayaals’ to do Gunaah. This has always happened to me as long as I can think back. I would be doing good A’amaal for some time, and then I would face this condition. Please give some explanation of this state, and also suggest what I should do to avoid this, or if it cannot be avoided, what should I do if this happens again.

Ashrafiya replied,

This is quite normal.

The initial enthusiasm waxes away for everything.

This is the moment of test. Ego-centric self (Nafs) and Shaitan will try their best to derail and demotivate you.

Being persistent in these circumstances is the key to success.

Ignore the negative feelings and thoughts. Just complete the routine you have fixed.

It is just like eating or going to work in spite of a strong desire not to do so. But the essential activities are to be done., otherwise health will deteriorate or job will be lost. Similar is the case here. If you become lax and start being negligent, then this Divine-calling (warid) for good actions may go away (Allahuma hafizna).

Islahi emails:KN

Giving up the permissible activities

In response to a seeker’s question regarding giving up all the permissible activities Ashrafiya replied

InshaAllah, travelling on this path attaches the heart of the aspirant to Allah in such a manner that eventually all other things become petty. Outwardly he may appear to be involved in all the usual day to day activity but inwardly his condition is of perpetual awareness and attachment. May Allah give this to both of us.

Our akabir advice not to give up the permissible worldly (dunyawi) stuff outright. This is because it will create a vaccum and if that vaccum is not filled with something beneficial it will be filled with impermissible stuff. Allah save us from this.

However, when the attachement and awareness of Allah increases it automatically drives away all other useless things even though they are permissible.

Islahi emails:IM

First Things First

It is a principle of Tasawwuf: There must be NO haste in making bayiat.

Firstly you have to understand why do you want it in first place?

What expectations do you have?


Then you have to look for an appropriate Shaykh with whom you have munasibet (congeniality). That is, you feel comfortable taking instructions from him and do not feel negatively about his method, instruction etc.
Then Shaykh also needs to have munasbet with you.
You have to make consultation with scholars and other shuykh about this shaykh in particular. Only after all this you make istekhara and then make the pledge.

However, bayiat is neither essential prerequisite nor a condition to make effort for islah (reformation). This is wajib all the time. Start this right away.

The best things do now will be,

  1. Make special dua for finding a Shaykh. Especially after each esha salat for at least 5 mins.
  2. Try your best to abstain from all sinful activities. Especially those related to eyes, ears and tongue. Internet misuse is a big issue. Be careful. Bad habits once developed are very hard to rectify.
  3. Get organized. Have a daily time table. Set time for recitation of Quran sharif, few azkar and reading from a Islamic text, even a single page daily is enough.
  4. Keep good company. In people, books, websites, etc. Avoid corrupt company.
  5. Focus on your studies seriously. They are like a wajib for you.
  6. Keep looking for a Shaykh. InshaAllah, you will be successful. Till then please, feel free to contact this lowly writer for any questions. The benefit is mutual. JazakAllah

Islahi emails:ZA

Joining the Ashrafiya silsila

A seeker from India requested to join the Ashrafiya silsila,

I’m from Maharashtra state India…After studying and researching on Islam and tassawuf I came to conclusion that ” Silsila of Hazrat Thanvi” has the perfect balance of tariqat and shariat….And I am amazingly impressed by Hakeemul ummats book, dr Abdul Hai arifi and Mufti Taqi Usmani…..I want to practically join this silsila for the purpose of attaining the riza e elahi….so that i could have the communications with shaikh and undertake the process of islah…..Please guide me what should i do for this need….

Ashrafiya replied,

MashaAllah your email is reflective of your intelligence, correct understanding of deen and desire for gaining Allah’s pleasure. These are magnanimous blessings of Allah. May Allah increase them more with ‘afiyet and give you their rewards. Amin!

Please, do not rush to commit.

Physical nearness is highly recommended for this relationship.

Take your time.

Visit 2 or 3 pious Shuyukh of Ashrafiya silsila in your vicinity.

Do research about them.

See the condition of their murideen. Have they progressed to be better practicing Muslims?

Do consultation (mashwera) with pious individuals and istekhara and then only commit.

In the blogroll there are links to various Shuyukh in India.

Personally I recommend contacting Hazrat Mawlana Qamaruz Zaman sahib Allahabadi db. He is one of the senior most mashaikh of our silsila. Take his guidance on this matter.

Islahi emails: ES

Ashrafiya Tasawwuf

A seeker wrote,

I think I have quite clear in my mind – from the theorical point of view – the status of Kashf, Tawajjuh, Karamat and so on in relation to the true objective of the Tariqah, their not being the goal, and even more, their being a potential fitnah and trap for the murid. But this quote I’ve read on a forum:

“The line of the chisti imdadiyah stopped doing these [] because they became more of scholars. The elders were very high accomplished scholars and sufis. Unfortunately, the 2nd and 3rd generations lost this and the condition is even worse these days amongst the present day mashaikh of the tariqa”. [[] The reference is to certain “particular” practices and ashghal adopted in the past in the Chishti Tariqah].

..raised some doubts in my mind, as I got the impression that some of today’s other Shuyukh propose a “dry”, simplified and just “moral” brand of Tasawwuf, with just its “ethical” part, leaving “metaphysics”, “spiritual stages” and more “deep”, “ruhani” stuff aside. I’d appreciate to read what would you reply to such allegations, so to put clarity and tranquility in my heart.

Ashrafiya replied,

It is essential to have a vivid understanding of the reality of Tasawwuf upstart.

Please, review all the post on the site regarding this.

The greatest sufi having the highest level of marifah possible is our master Prophet Mohammad (Allah bless him and give him peace). His blessed life and ways are a role model for us.

Tasawwuf is to make this happen. It is always subservient to Shariah.
The level of awareness of Allah needed to bring this is relative to the ghaflah (heedlessness) and involvement in worldly affairs of an individual.

The ashgal and azkar used by sufis to do so are therefore adjusted accordingly. They are neither a goal in themselves nor a superior form of worship or supposed to create a state other than required by Shariah.

The khashaf, karamat, etc are just some of the spiritual benefits of the moral purification. The best spiritual thing is a very strong and perpetual connection with Allah. A yearning and overwhelming desire to please Him and abstain from everything that displeases Him. This leads one to follow the teachings of Shariah meticulously.

I have persoanlly met sincere sufis that promise bayiat to the Prophet Prophet Mohammad (Allah bless him and give him peace) in a wakeful state. However, when measured in the scale of Sunnah and Shariah they failed terribly.

Alhumdullilah Ashrafi silaila is blessed with its portion of spiritual blessings. It is seldom mentioned due to their overwhelming state of humility. But you can have a glimpse of it in their poetic expressions. Most of our Mashaikh have dewans of poetry.

I hope I have made some sense. Please, do not hesitate to ask if there remains something unclear.

Islahi emails:UAL

Priorities

A seeker wrote his quite extensive daily routine.

Ashrafiya replied,

MashaAllah. May Allah give you isteqamah.

Go slow and easy initially. Do not exhaust yourself by fixing a routine that is beyond your limits. Make lot of dua for ease, guidance and acceptance from Allah in this regards.

Also, it must be remembered that all these things are supererogatory (nafil) to provide assistance in fulfilling the essentials (wajibat) to gain Allah’s pleasure. The most important of which is to abstain from all that is impermissible (sins).
Also, your duties as a son, brother, husband, father, being a employee at work, or as a student in college have priority over all these nafil activities.

Islahi emails:UAL

Sulook

The sulook is individualized and tailored to each and every seeker’s (talib’s) condition.

Also, Shuyukh have various personal temperament (zauq) in implementing their sulook.

This is reason for one-to-one: Shaykh-murid relationship.

This also highlights the importance of being on the same mental wave length (munasbet) with the Shaykh prior to becoming a murid.

To really achieve this it is essential to visit and correspond with the Shaykh for a considerable period of time before committing yourself.

It is vital to remember all that has been said before in this regards and visit/revisit/correspond with these individuals, do istikhara & istishara (consultation with the Allah & wise men) before making the final desicion.

Islahi emails:TK

How to develop Determination?

The touchstone (kimiya) for islah is determination (himmat).

It is developed by

  1. Increasing one’s knowledge about the importance of the actions being neglected.
  2. Being in the company of people who already have determination, the pious (buzurgan e deen).
  3. Reading about the predecessor pious (akabir and ahl-e-himmat o muhabbat). Book Nuzhatul Basateen is best compilation about this.
  4. Making dua regularly. Asking Allah for determination everyday.
  5. Keeping in contact with the Shaykh irrespective of one’s condition (bad or good).

Islahi emails::MRK

Communication with Shaikh

A seeker wrote,


Jazakallahukhair
Hazrat Ali Mian (Allah have mercy on him) told us to do the 3 tasbeehat of durood,astaghfar and 3rd kalima.

Unfortunately i dont do them regularly.I just do some zikr of durood and istaghfar randomly or while doing some household work.

Maybe i should try to be punctual in those before taking bayat from someoneelse?

Ashrafiya replied,

JazakAllah for the kind email. It is very much reflective of your ture yearning (talub). MashaAllah. May Allah increase it with afiyet. Amin.

Yes continue with what Hadhrat instructed.

If due to work, etc you cannot do 100 times, do 33 or 11 times daily. However, fix a time for them, for example after asr salah.

Also, make daily esal e sawab for him, atleast surah ikhlas 3 times.

In the meantime look for a Shaykh with whom you can easily communicate. The reality of bayat is to get instructions (to lead a true Islamic life). These are individualized to your circumstances and therefore, more beneficial then other good advice.

Please, do try to make dua for me.

muhtaj

Islahi emails

Second Shaikh

A seeker wrote,

Can I become a muridah of Shaikh Hazrat Taqi Usmani Sahab.
I was previously a murida of Shaikh Abul Hasan Ali Nadwi (Allah have mercy on him) from India.

Ashrafiya replied,

It is a great blessing of Allah that you are a muridah of Hadhrat Ali mian (Allah have mercy on him).

I pray and hope that you are continuing with what Hadhrat ra told you to do, such as tasbihat, Quran recitation (tilawat), reading (mutala‘) etc.

As a basic rule, it is most beneficial that after the passing away of his/her Shaykh a murid should associate with Shaykh’s senior khulafa (representatives) to continue the journey on the same track.

However, if due to unavoidable circumstances you can not contact any of those khulafa then you can correspond with sayyidi wa sanadi Hadhrat Mawlana Mohammad Taqi Usmani (may Allah preserve & protect him) for islah and bayiat.

Please, feel free to ask any questions in this regards if necessary.

Islahi emails

Starting Islah

A seeker wrote

Sir from last two years I am trying to contact you for bait.I live in USA .Please tell me how can I become your murid.

Ashrafiya replied,

I assume that you have mistaken me for Hazrat Mawlana Mohammad Taqi Usmani (Allah protect & preserve him). I am from his insignificant servants. (adna khudam).

Please, contact Hazrat directly at his office (the number and address is on the website) or write to him.

In the meantime read multiple time and start whatever is easy from the webpage:Instructions for the seeker.

For the seeker

Keep trying inshaAllah you will scceed. You have reverence & importance of deen in your heart. May it increase and bear fruits abundantly. Amin!

muhtaj e dua
‘abd

The first step

A seeker wrote

A year after Hajj ALLAH has blessed us with a daughter Allhamdulliah!!. Since then I really got involved with her. I tried my best to be devoted but I realized that my iman is getting weaker and weaker. I was not able to do those things which i used to do before and while taking care of her and home I get frustrated and when ever I get chance like when she sleeps or so, i use to watch drama on internet instead of doing ibadat . . my mother’s side family takes care about the farz ibadat like salat , zakat , & fasting but on my father’s side family they don’t care about the farz ibadaat i dont know about zakat whether they give zakat or not. They usually care about sunnat. My dadihaal is more like not follwing the religion. I am informing you this because i do not know why but i am like my dadihaal’s side it became part of my nature i always try not to be like them but some where inside me its persent. I do fulfill the basic farz ibadaat now Allahmdullilah & try to do nafli ibadaats but i cant do it in punctually like for example i usually recite Quran daily but at some point i do not. I used to listen islamic lectures and read islamic books but again after some time period I don’t.

Ashrafiya replied,

These days most families are like this.

We should thank Allah abundantly that He is guiding us towards Himself.

We can not judge others.

Some people who are outwardly irreligious may have strong eman internally and eventually outrun others in Here-after.

Our primary concern is salvation of ourself.

Focus on the essentials (faraiz) for now. Especially salah. Pray regularly on time. It is a must.

Keep a record of any namaz that is missed and qaza not done.


Try to read at least one page from the books of sayyidi wa sanadi Mawlana Mufti Mohammad Taqi Usmani sahib (Islahi majalis) or listen to the waaz online for 10 -15 mins daily.

Make dua aftet each salah in detail for whatever bothers you or you desire (3-5 minutes).


Recite kalimah tayyiba (la illaha ilAllah u) with occansiional (Muhammadur Rasool Allah, sallalaho alhe wasalam) while doing the house hold chores.

Islahi emails:MTA

How to Remembering the spiritual medicine when its needed

A seeker wrote,
A lot of the spiritual medicines prescribed in the recommended readings, our Hazrat (Mufti Taqi Usmani, Allah protect & preserve him)‘s book islahi khutbaat and in the correspondance with you are indeed very effective Alhamdulillah. Please suggest some techniques/course of action to remember them when they are needed.
I get a feeling that I am not implementing them as properly as it should be done.

Ashrafiya replied,

MashaAllah.
This question is a sign of ture talub. May Allah increase it more with afiyet (Allahuma zid fa zid).

The tip is to read and re-read the prescription many times and
make dua asking Allah to facilitate its recall at the appropriate time.
And if one forgets it, then fix a fine (jurmana) for this failure, like two rakah salat e tauba.

Islahi emails:TA

Reviewed and approved by sanadi wa sanadi Mufti Mohammed Taqi Usmani (Allah protect & preserve him)

Exposing the shameful

A seeker wrote,

It has been a month since I wrote a proper letter, was really feeling the need. I have started to write down instances where I feel some negative traits were demonstrated by me. Especially when I am reading the prescribed readings I write down all the questions (‘ashkalat’) right away. I feel really ashamed to be writing some of the things below but I have learned from the Ashrafiya blog that one has to be very open in describing all ailments to the Shaykh.

Ashrafiya replied,

There is no reason for concern. Many times we have to tell the physician things that are embarrassing. However, we recognize that it is important to achieve cure and healthy state.

Islahi emails:TA

Reviewed and approved by sanadi wa sanadi Mufti Mohammed Taqi Usmani (Allah protect & preserve him)