Category Archives: B. Praise worthy morals

The good moral characteristics that are to be developed within one’s self

How to write a Islahi letter?

Following is a communication between a seeker requesting guidance on writing a letter to his spiritual mentor and the Ashrafiya reply.

1) How does one begin and end a letter? a. Does one write I hope you are well or ask How are you, etc.
b.or should one proceed directly?

a. It is quite appropriate to do so.
b. Sometimes I write some sentences of supplications (duaiya kalimat), like may Allah keep your blessed presence guiding us for long with afiyet or some times express gratitude to Allah for being able to communicate for islah, etc.

Best is to make a dua for facilitation in writing what is best for my own islah prior to writing the letter and then proceed with whatever comes to mind.

Is it appropriate to say Jazakumullahu khairan at the end? If not, what should be said as an expression of gratitude?

It is fine.
Also humbly request for special dua.

2) a.What is included in the ma’moolaat?
b.Does one write his daily routine to th shaikh?
c.What about the adhkaar, does one repeat his adhkaar in every letter?

a.The daily tasbihat, tilawet, munajet maqbool, qaza namaz wa roza and recommended reading.
b. Not all the time. Once is enough and if there is major change then report it to him again.
c. No. Just inform that whether you are consistent on the adhkar that were instructed to you or not.

3) Should one analyze his condition himself and report it to the shaikh, or should one merely report the circumstances?

In issues dealing with blameworthy characteristics (razail) one should tell the whole scenario and let Shaykh diagnose and treat.
In issues felt within (halaat) one should tell directly whatever that feeling/emotion is. If there is none then report that there is no new halat.

Islahi emails:IK

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

Remorse

A seeker lamented regarding his sinful status.

Ashrafiya replied,

It is a fact that except for Prophets no one is free of sins.

However, blessed are those who acknowledge them, have remorse, repent and try to avoid repeating them in future.

Some times the reward of this remorse and repentance is unimaginable and incomparable to the best good deeds.

Islahi emails

Levels of Humility

A seeker wrote, what I overwhelmingly feel is that humility is absent.

Ashrafiya replied,

Humility has several levels.

InshaAllah you have the basic level.

You are aiming for a higher level. InshaAllah it will come with time. Keep doing whatever you are doing. Make repentance and ask Allah for this also.


Humility increases with increase in Gnosis (marfat). That is recognizing the true stature and grandeur of Allah, & His immense blessings on a undeserving and disobedient slave, like me.

Islahi emails:TA

Feeling sad

A seeker wrote,

Another problem I feel is that whenever I get really sad, feel loney or get depressed then my heart does not find peace. Not even in salat. I cannot concentrate . I donot know why it is and how can I can resolve it.

Ashrafiya replied,

Try to keep a positive outlook.
Thank Allah for each and every blessing.
Set aside 5 minutes daily to do this. Enumerate all the blessings, e.g. life, well functioning body organs & systems, health, husband, daughter, wealth, house, etc.

Islahi emails

Humility

A seeker wrote,

This question is about an issue that I feel seriously effects me. Its about considering myself better than others. I am not sure how to explain it properly but I feel that I think this way. I feel there is a sense of ‘kibr’ in me, the humility that should be the defining characteristic of a good muslim just seems to be absent. I feel I have to fake the humility constantly.
I constantly try to focus on the good qualities of other people and ponder upon the humility of our pious predecessors. But I feel my natural instinct is a feeling of superiority which I know has no basis.

Ashrafiya replied,
InshaAllah, with increasing marifet this humility will become more evident.

For the present make it a practice to recall whenever you see someone that he is superior to me and I am the most inferior (haqeer) of all.

Islahi emails

Imam Hussain’s message

Grand Mufti of Pakistan Mufti Mohammed Shafi (Allah have mercy on him) writes,

Read the details of martyrdom from beginning till end, reflect on the correspondence and sermons of honorable (Imam) Hussain (Allah be pleased with him). You will find that his goals were,

1. Implementation of the rulings of Quran and Sunna in the truest sense

2. Reinstating the Islamic system of justice again

3. Continuous struggle (Jihad) against the innovation of monarchy and dictatorship which replaced Islam’s way of khilafet e nabuwat.

4. Not being intimidated by power and wealth when defending the truth (Haqq)

5. Sacrifice one’s life, family and all possessions when defending the truth (Haqq)

6. Not to be distressed in situation of fear and hardship by remembering Allah all the time, having complete trust (tawakul) in Him and being thankful to Him in all situations.

Is there anyone who listens to this message of beloved of Prophet of Allah (Allah bless him & grant him peace), the victim of Karbala, the persecuted martyr?

Is there (someone) ready to fulfill his mission? Follow his footsteps, making his noble morals and praiseworthy actions the goal of his own life?

O Allah! Grant us Your’s , Your Prophet’s (Allah bless him & grant him peace), his noble Companions’ and his perfect families’ comprehensive love and exhaustive following. Ameen!

Shaheed e Karbala, p 6-7

An Effective Method for Leaving out Sins

Hakim al Umma Moulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi (Allah have mercy on him) once mentioned:

One method which I prescribe to people for leaving out sins, is that every night before sleeping, one should seclude oneself in a room and sincerely supplicate to Allah to forgive him for his sins. One should make du’aa to Allah in the following manner: “O Allah! I am an extremely sinful servant! I am not worthy of any good and I am full of weaknesses!” Through these words, one should express one’s true condition of sinfulness before Allah. Thereafter, one should say, “O Allah! I do not have the courage and resolve to leave out these sins! It is only You who can assist and help me to leave out these sins!”

If one adopts this method, then insha Allah, in a week or two, he will be blessed with the facilitation (taufeeq) and ability to leave out these sins. However, very few people are willing to sincerely repent to Allah in this manner.

(Malfoozaat Husn-ul-Azeez pg. 226)

Expending for good causes

A seeker inquired,

Once you have earned a livelihood the next step is how to spend it. A portion is basic necessities. One should definitely make sure that no portion is spent on any outright haram activity.What portion of the leftover (after necessities and the not so necessary expenditures like better clothes, A/C, trip to Pakistan) should one donate? (Besides Zakat)

Ashrafiya replied,

Depends on your financial condition. 1/10th or 1/20th of the income should be allocated for good word (masaref e khair) and kept aside. Whenever there is an opportunity for good it can be spend.

Presents for the family, relatives, donations. etc. can be made from it.

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

Nuqus o kamal

A seeker wrote,


Alhamdulillah the I am trying to act on the Faraidh and Mamoolat. Waise sacchi baat tau ye he ke band eke a’amaal intihai naqis hain, Allah SWT ma’af farmaaen.

Ashrafiya replied,

MashaAllah. apnay a’mal kay nuqus ka ahsas kamal aur kamyabi ki tarf safar ki a’lamet hay. Jaisa bun pa raha hay us pay shukr aur kotahi par istegfar kartey rahna hay.

Islahi emails:TA

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

Khushu in Salah

A seeker wrote,
– I try to focus on the words and meanings in Salah but the train of thought derails very frequently. Please recommend something in this regard.

Ashrafiya replied,

No problem at all.
Invoulantary derailment does not cause damage to khushu.
Whenever, you recognize the derailment come back on the track.
InshaAllah, with persisitence and practice the frequency of this will decrease.

Islahi emails:TA

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

Islahi details

A seeker wrote,

My close friends and family members (whom I consult for my major decisions) are aware of my pursuing this path. I get a feeling that they expect more as if I am going to change overnight (perhaps it was a mistake to let some people know about this effort). Subsequently I get a feeling that I am trying to improve myself to show off in front of others. And it makes me really doubt the ikhlas that is a pre-requisite for all a’mal to be accepted i.e. they should be solely for pleasing Allah SWT. Please advise.

Ashrafiya replied,

1. The details of the islah are individualized. They are personal and private. It is inappropriate to share the details with others. Even if they were to ask the details answer very humbly that I have been asked not to tell others. I am doing whatever is being instructed.

2. There is no problem in informing them in general that you are trying to establish a islahi ta’luq.

3. Be aware that islah is a life long process. The change is gradual. Our akabir compare it to the growing of a child.

4. The blame-worthy moral trait of show-off or riya is a ikhteyari action. That is, you have to have an intention and then do it. It does not happen by itself without your control.

5. Also, as a established principle it is stated that the real show-off never ever doubts his own ikhlas and mukhlis is always in doubt. So do not worry. Continue what you are doing. MashaAllah, you are travelling and distance is being covered.

Islahi emails:TA

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

Safety from Hypocrisy

Our master Muʿādh ibn Jabal (God be pleased with him) said,

“An act requires four things to be safe from hypocrisy:

-knowledge before beginning it,

-proper intention at its start,

-patience during it, and

-sincerity at its conclusion.”

The Principles of Tasawwuf (A Ba’yuniah ra), p53

Safety from Hypcrisy

Our master Muʿādh ibn Jabal (God be pleased with him) said,

“An act requires four things to be safe from hypocrisy:

-knowledge before beginning it,

-proper intention at its start,

-patience during it, and

-sincerity at its conclusion.”

The Principles of Tasawwuf (A Ba’yuniah ra), p53