Category Archives: D. Acts of Worship

Various acts of devotion to show our servitude

Keep progressing

A seeker must never become content at a particular spiritual state.

He must constantly desire more progress. This is by worship & spiritual efforts, maintaining focus & firm determination, and sincere humble supplications.

Usool e Tasawwuf, Muqalat e Hakimul Ummat ra, volume 14, page 100

Distraction in wird

A seeker wrote,

While reciting the daily wird I become distracted and a feeling of completing it quickly prevails. This is causing extreme distress and apprehension.

Hakim al-Umma Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanvi (Allah have mercy on him) replied,

Do not even pay attention to this apprehension.

Complete the wird (whatever the feelings maybe).

Be reassured, that InshaAllah with persistent remembrance (dhikr e daim) this apprehension will fade away by itself.

Rafa adh dheeq an ahl at-tareeq, Muqalat e Hakim al Ummat, vol 14, page 72

Enthusiasm

A seeker wrote, these days I feel completely listless. There is no enthusiasm at all for anything. This includes no eagerness to perform acts of worship.

Hakim al Umma Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi (Allah have mercy on him) replied,

Enthusiasm is not a necessary requirement. Performance of acts of worship (in itself) is an essential requirement.

Moreover, acts of worship done without enthusiasm entail hardship and hence carry more reward.

This tip is worth to be remembered forever.

Rafa adh dheeq an ahl tareeq, Muqalat e Hakim al Ummat, vol 14, page 72

Become a Muslim

Qutub Alam Shaikh Abdul Qudoos Al Gangohi (d:1537CE. Allah have mercy on him) said,

O Seeker of Truth! If the path of Islam was as easy (as you think) then everyone would become Shibli and Ibrahim bin Adham (Allah have mercy on them). (In reality) Until and unless you are a (true) Muslim from within you can never be a (real) Muslim from outside.

It is grieving and mournful to see these days that world is full of spiritual mentors (pir) and seekers (mureed) but no one can find a (true) Muslim.

What is mentor-seeker (piri-mureedi) relationship nowadays?

It is all idolatry and self-worship!

May Allah save us all from it. Ameen!

This is in reality my own mournful predicament. I tell it so others can learn from it.

Maktubaat e Qudoosiya, letter #111, page 480 (from Urdu translation by Shaikh Capt. Wahid Baksh Siyal rehmatullah aleh)

It

Golden Advice

Shaikh Syed Ahmed Kabeer Al Rifai said that I requested Shaikh Abdul Malik Al Herboni (Allah have mercy on them) for advice. He instructed

‘O Ahmed!

1. One who keeps looking left and right never achieves union (wisal).

2. One who has doubts seldom succeeds.

3. One who is not aware of his (spiritual) deficiencies all his time is spent in a deficient state.

Al Bayan ul mushyed, p120-1

Spiritual Proximity (qurb)

Sayyidi wa sanadi Mufti Mohammed Taqi Usmani (Allah protect & preserve him) was replying to the letters of spiritual aspirants.

After reading a letter he addressed those sitting in his office,

One of my friends (Shaikh usually uses this title for those seeking spiritual reformation (islah) under his supervision) is blessed with witnessing of the Holy Prophet (Allah’s blessings & peace be upon him) frequently. Sometimes it is in sleep (dream), other times in a state between sleep and wakefulness and also in wakeful state.

A great blessing indeed!

However, few things must be clear about this phenomenon.

Firstly, it is something beyond one’s volition. It is ghair ikhteyari. It is a blessing and one should be excessively thankful to Allah for it. However, it is not a sign of spiritual proximity. One should not consider him/herself spiritually superior to others because of it.

Secondly, if one is blessed with this for a while and then it ceases to exist than also it is not a sign of spiritual decadence.

The only thing that matters in spiritual proximity are an individual’s actions. That is doing good and abstaining from sinful.

This must be explicitly clear.’

Ramadan 1442, post zohar, office, Darul Uloom Karachi

Things to do After Ramadan

For development and maintenance of  reverence of God (taqwa) in our post-Ramadan life sayyidi wa sanadi Shaikh Mufti Mohammad Taqi Usmani (Allah preserve him) said,

1.Leave sinful activities:

Be strict on holding your lower (nafsani) desires. Make a firm determination. Do not yield to these sinful desires easily. These desires and Satan are our two arch enemies.

2. Change the thought pattern.

The mind is constantly occupied with thoughts. There is no gap or vacuum in this process. These thoughts are either of worldly matters or useless issues or sinful activities. It is essential to intervene and develop a spiritually healthy though pattern. We have to actively think about hereafter, heavens, thankfulness of Allah for the innumerable bounties and blessings bestowed upon us, asking refuge for anticipated calamities, repenting from sinful activities, etc.

3. Adopt pious company

This is the most effective way to achieve the change of thought pattern. It leads to absorption, assimilation and implementation of the Divine teachings in our life. Without the company of the the pious the Deen remains limited to superficial level.

4. Make remembrance of Allah

Set up a daily routine of making remembrance of Allah. There are three categories of remembrance of Allah. First is that it is done with the tongue without presence of mind. Second is when tongue is silent and there is mindfulness. Finally, when both tongue and mind are making the remembrance together. Do not under evaluate even the first category. It is a stepping stone for the rest of the categories. Moreover, with consistency it eventually engulfs the mind also.

Make a daily time table for this. The daily activities done in an organised method creates barakah in time. More things are done in the same period of time. Include in it these four things, recitation of Holy Quran atleast two pages daily, durood, third kalima and istegfar. Fix a specific time for them. In other times recite whatever form of remembrance comes to mind.

The remembrance of Allah (dhikr) is a form of energy and power. It assists in development of determination to fight the lower desires.

5. Make supplication (dua)

Set a specific time for this. Like prior to sleeping, after esha. For few minutes sit and supplicate.

Say, ‘O Allah I want to follow the path You are pleased with. I want to control my thoughts, aspirations and desires as per Your desires. You have repeatedly instructed us in the Holy Quran to do so. How can I do it? I am weak. My determination and effort are feeble. Provide from Your benevolence and mercy the determination, power and motivation so I can control my desires and make them totally subservient to Your commands.’

Make this supplication daily without any gap. It is impossible that Allah will reject this supplication indeed.

29th Ramadan 1432/30th August 2011, Darul Uloom masjid, after duhur bayan.

https://www.ashrafiya.com/2011/09/17/post-ramadan-effort-preserving-the-momentum-of/

Worship, spirituality & buzurgi

A seeker wrote,

السلام عليكم ورحمة الله

Hazrat, what would you say about the subtle feeling of being some sort of unproductive during acts of worship or of spirituality?

Could it be a modern disease or at least weakness or mistuning of the heart, which needs rectification? As when the feeling grows, one becomes even lazy towards faraidh.

Or is it more of a غير اختیاری feeling like جی نہیں لگنا and thus should simply be ignored?

Or is it even helpful in order to save oneself in his youth from excessive ibaadah and nawafil and put effort into learning and earning? It might be protect from premature buzurgi.

Some guidance regarding this would be appreciated. JazakAllahu khayran.

Ashrafiya replied,

Salaam

This is reflective of poor understanding of Deen.
Works of extra worship and spirituality are done to subdue the nafs, develop a perpetual state of being cognizant that Allah is aware of what I am doing/thinking etc. and become a true Muslim up to the standard required. It has nothing to do with buzurgi.

This is one of the most common prevalent misconceptions.

It’s cause is neglecting the suhba of the pious.

It requires rectification. This is by setting a regular schedule of pious company (where the intention is nothing but self islah. No waaz, knowledge or nasihat is the objective) and a daily routine of ma’mulaat that include recitation of Quran kareem, tasbihat, adiya e masnonah and few nawafil.

I hope I answered your question.
Was salaam

Islahi emails: TAF

Deceptions of Nafs

Shaikh Ahmed Arqam Balkhi (Allah have mercy on him) narrates that once my inner-self (nafs) insisted that I go and join the battle (jihad). I was surprised. In Quran Allah says that nafs commands to do evil and my nafs was telling me to do something virtuous. How can this be possible?

I confronted the nafs and said that most probably you are sick of staying in solitude and want that I go in the army where people will pay respect to me. However, I am going to fight alone (not join the army). Nafs agreed. I became more suspicious. I told him that I will fight without ammunition and die first. He agreed to it also. I told him many similar things and he agreed to all.

I was perplexed.

I prayed fervently to Allah to show me nafs’ deception.

In a vision (mukashafa) I saw my nafs.

He said that every day you kill me several times by not doing what I command, so if you go for Jihad and are killed instantaneously then it will be easier.

Moreover, no one knows about this daily struggle. It is hidden from all. But if you are killed in battlefield everyone will speak highly about you. All will say Ahmed is a martyr (shaheed).

The deception of nafs are complex and deep. They requires consultation with a mentor (murshid).

Tanveer ul Afaq: Shah Turab Ali Qalandar (Allah have mercy on him)

Doubts 1: Are Sufis ahle biddah

A seeker inquired, I am attracted to the deobandi mashrab but have read some arab sufic works.

Ashrafiya replied,

This is good to know. It also shows your concern for Deen. May Allah swt increase it more with ‘afiyet. Amin!

Seeker continued ,

1)I wish to ask if you know where I can obtain Hakim ul Umma’s treatise on sama’

Ashrafiya replied,

It can be read online or downloaded from here.

https://archive.org/stream/haqqalsama00thnv#page/n4/mode/2up

Seeker asked, and his book on the chishtiya buzurgan not being ahle bidat

There is a book al sunnat al jalilia chishtiya.

https://archive.org/details/AlChishtiyyah-AshrafAliThanawi/page/n11/mode/2up

In general it is about the importance paid by the Chishti mashaikh on following the Sunnah.

There is a detailed communication of Hakim al Umma rehmatullah aleh on the maslak of Hazrat Haji Imdadullah sahib rehmatullah aleh and that of his deobandi khulafa. It is included in the book Bawader al nawadir, page194 – 204
the book can be downloaded on read online from the following link,

https://archive.org/stream/Bawadir-un-nawadirByShaykhAshrafAliThanvir.a#page/n0/mode/2up

The concept of bidah as understood and implemented in practice by the scholars of Deoband must be very clear upfront.
Most of the practices which we identify as bidah these days are rusoom that were mubah/permissible activities. In previous generation the over all religiosity was better than nowadays and people knew that these are cultural and customary practices. They indulged in them with a good intention. Most importantly they knew definitely that these are neither Sunna or wajib practices. However, in later generations the over all religiosity decreased (see for yourself nowadays) and especially the lay people (most of whom are negligent in observance of Sunna and wajibat) started to regard these activities essential. They criticized those who did not do so or said that one can be a Sunni Sufi without them. That was the point when scholars o Deoband took the bold stand.

Hazrat Haji Imdadullah sahib mohajir Makki rehmatullah aleh was well aware of the stance of his deobandi khulafa. However, he was also aware that these practices are cultural/customary rituals, they are neither from aqaid or ebadaat. Thay are zauqi umoor. The book Faisala hafta masala explicitly documents this.That is the reason he did not cancel their khilafet or forced them to do what they considered bidah. He tried his best that the two parties understand each others view point. He endorsed the book written by both of them.

Islahi emails:NS

Ajman 🇦🇪

Allah’s decree: Accept or be upset about it

Our master Shaykh Abdus Salaam ibn e Mashish (Allah have mercy on him) said,

There are two vices that erase all good actions. First is, being upset with whatever Allah decides for us, and second is being cruel and unjust to fellow human beings.

And there are two virtues that wipe out all the wrongdoings. One is accepting the decree of Allah, and second is forgiving the fellow human beings (for their shortcomings).

(Usman Hijazi. 16/1/2021 Stillborn)

Consolation : Long distance relationship

Sayyidi wa sanadi Mufti Mohammed Taqi Usmani (Allah protect & preserve him) said while consoling a gentleman who lost his son,

‘I remind people who have lost their dear ones to imagine how you manage when you have a child living abroad. You don’t meet him for years. But you are content that he is living happily. You don’t see him all the time or talk to him often but you are satisfied about his well being. Similarly a believer (momin) feels the same about his departed loved ones. Moreover, this separation is temporary. It is not permanent. One day you are going to meet him. This is the meaning of

انا للّٰہ و انا الیہ راجعون۔

We certainly belong to Allah, and to Him we are bound to return. 2:156

When this meeting will happen no one knows. But it will, for sure, occur.

Till that time you can send him gifts 🎁 in form of forwarding the reward of good deeds (esal-e-thawab) as much as you wish. This will certainly benefit him as has been reported in authentic sayings of Prophet of Allah (Allah’s blessing & peace be upon him).

This thinking gives much consolation to the bereaved family members.’

Saturday 2 January 2021, post-zohar, Hazrat residence, Darul Uloom Karachi

On seeing non-Muslims & non-practicing Muslims

A seeker wrote,

Sometimes I would look at non-Muslims, or non-practising-Muslims, and the thought of Hell would cause me grief and anxiety. I would get this feeling of helplessness, that I’m not helping them despite knowing.

Ashrafiya replied,

The best help is to make dua for them and be a role model Muslim. Set 2 or 3 minutes daily to make dua specifically for all of them.

Islahi emails:KN

Changes in daily routine

A seeker wrote,

The daily ma’moolat were going OK for some time until I got the thought that Qada salah has priority over Quran recitation, so I tried to give more time to Qada salah. But I was not able to keep up with this change in routine beyond a few days. This change in routine, which was done without seeking your permission, caused me distress, as I was not abe to fulfill this routine. I have now reverted back to 8 rakat per day, as were your instructions, and will increase it on a day-to-day basis, without increasing the daily minimum. Please advise regarding this.

Ashrafiya replied,

Keep the daily routine as usual.


Drastic and quick changes are usually difficult to maintain.

Do not be in a rush. Alhumdulillah you have a sincere intention of qada, inshaAllah you will be able to do so eventually.

Be aware that the tricks of nafs and shaitan are not limited to sinful activities. Sometimes it creates fitna in permissible and rewardable activities. Be cautious.

Islahi emails:KN