Category Archives: N. Advice

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

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

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

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

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

Memorizing

A seeker wrote, The rest of the mamoolaat are going good but memorising duas from the book Uswae Rasul e Akram is going weak. I always find it very hard to memorize the Quran and duas (and remember them). Please make dua in this regard.

Ashrafiya replied,
Amin!
I usually take a picture of the dua in my mobile phone and recite it (reading the text at appropriate times). Eventually it is memorized.

Islahi emails:TA

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

Levels of beautification

A seeker wrote,

The aspect of show off (riya kari). How do I figure out if we are spending money to beautify the house for ourselves or so that it looks nice for guests?

Is decorating so that it looks nice to the guests riya kari?


Sayyidi wa sanadi Mufti Taqi Usmani (Allah protect & preserve him) reminds us of the 4 levels of beatification as told by Hakim al-Ummat ra,

Bare minimum for residence (Rehaish)

Comfortable living (aasaish)

Decorating it (araaish) for ones own liking and

Decorating it to show off (numaish).

First 3 are permissible and the last is impermissible.

Islahi emails:TA

Extravagant spending

A seeker wrote,

In the last month I spent a lot of time along with my family members on picking up the interior materials like carpet, hardwood, cabinets, counters etc. We also got a lot of stuff that we really liked it e.g. best quality hardwood flooring, better appliances etc. For a lot of the things we could have gone with much cheaper stuff but we spent money on what we liked in a reasonable limit. At the same time I feel we didn’t stretch our selves beyond our means. A few points that I wanted to mention InshaAllah the aspect of ‘fuzool kharchi’ Although I spent the money, I am thinking that may be the $20,000 spent on the upgrades should have been given to the poor (for the size of our house I have normally seen people spending around 60000 – 80000 in upgrades, as the builders give really cheap stuff by default).

Ashrafiya replied,

This is not extravagant spending (fuzool kharchi).

The money spend for the comfort of family, friend and other Muslims is also rewarding.

Also, it will make your thankfulness (shukur) more heartfelt.

Islahi emails:TA

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 Gifted

A seeker wrote, I wanted to explain one behaviour in this regard. Whenever I see people who have been blessed a little less in one department e.g. Appearance or intelligence, a thought comes to my mind like feeling sorry for the person. I try my best not to be judgemental about the person based on that or comment in front of anyone else. I feel guilt about this reaction.
I wanted to add that I don’t feel this way when the person leading the
salah is older than me or has a more shari appearance or demonstrably
more knowledgeable in Islam.
Which may mean that I consider myself superior to someone who does not fit in one of the above mentioned groups, astaghfirullah. Although I do try my best to think and negate this false feeling of superiority when I remember.

Ashrafiya replied,

It is natural to feel gifted compared to others.

However, we must be excessively thanful to Allah for this benovence for selecting us and not placing us in the deprived category.

Also, we should remind ourself that these blessings are purely a gift of Allah and my own effort or capabilities or virtues having nothing whatsoever to do with them. Allah who has given this has full control to take away whenever He so decides.

Combining these thoughts actively will inshaAllah lead to more humbleness and gratitude.

Islahi emails:TA