Every Human Being is Born a Muslim

September 30, 2006

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

“When we recite the opening chapter of the Holy Qu’ran, these words are a conversation between the believer and his Lord. When the servant of God says: “In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful,” the Lord says: “My servant is calling Me.” And when he says: “Praise be to Allah, the Lord of the worlds, the Beneficent, the Merciful,” the Lord says: “My servant knows Me and he praises me, for I love him and I overlook his faults.” When the believer says: “Master of the Day of Requital,” the Lord says: “My servant knows that he will come back to Me, and depends on My justice and forgiveness.”

The call to prayer consists of reciting four times, “Allah is greatest.” Twice, “I witness that there is no god but Allah.” Twice, “I witness that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah.” Twice, “Come to salvation,” twice, “Come to felicity,” and again twice,  “Allah is greatest.” Finally, at the end, the reciter says once, “There is no God but Allah. “

The reason that these phrases are repeated is that Muslims believe that every human being is born a Muslim (that is, born in submission to God) – in fact, everything created is created as a Muslim. Some have remembered their original submission to God, while others have not. The first repetition addresses those who realize their state. The second is to remind those who have forgotten.

- From Muhyiddin ibn al-‘Arabi’s book, The Tree of Being, interpreted by Shaykh Tosun Bayrak.

Ya Haqq!


Eid and Holiday Gifts!

September 29, 2006

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

Eid is coming! If you would like unique Eid gifts, (or Christmas or Hanukkah or birthday gifts) here are a couple of suggestions:

For Children and Young Adults:

The Sufi Game – It is like Chutes and Ladders, and an excellent game to instill the attributes that lead to a love of God. To view the game go here. Price is $18.00 US

Just send a note with check or money order to KNP: Khaniqah Nimatullahi Publications

306 West 11th Street
New York, New York 10014

For Adults:

Signed Copies of Master of the Jinn

Signed copies can be made out to you or to whomever you wish. Go to the website’s Order page and scroll to the bottom for information. If you have a Paypal account, books can be sent the same day they are ordered. To email me for information about using Paypal, or for any other reason, go to the website and click the Contact link, or click the Author tab above for my email address. (Note: the email address in the Author tab is written in a way to avoid spam robots from picking it up, so please correct it).

10% of all book profits go to charity.

Ya Haqq!


The Love of You

September 27, 2006

“Oh Allah, I ask You to grant me the love of You and the love of those whom You love, and grant me, Oh my Lord, the love of those actions which lead me to the love of You.”

- A hadith of the Prophet (pbuh), in which he prayed to God:


Worth Noting

September 26, 2006

Salaam and Greeting of Peace:

Below are a couple of blog posts and an item worth noting

Our Sister Saly’s excellent post There is No “Muslim” God. on her Confused Mind and Restless Soul blog. Really beautiful and well-written.

Our Brother Sadiq’s beautiful Sufi poem Worn-Out Rosary and Fragrance of God (dedicated to this unworthy darvish) on his Mystic Saint blog Inspirations and Creative Thoughts. 

The new issue of the popular ISLAMICA Magazine, (No. 17), has published an excerpt of Master of the Jinn: A Sufi Novel. (the prologue and first chapter). This has been done thanks to the kind efforts of Contributing Writer and Columnist, and wonderful mystical poet, Daniel Abdal-Hayy Moore. Visit his site here.

I am a fan of ISLAMICA, and of Abdal-Hayy, so take a look if you like. The illustrations they had commissioned for the excerpt are great.  Just click on the “view magazine page” pdf link.  I haven’t received my copy yet, so if you have already gotten the latest issue, please let me know what you think.

Ya Haqq!


The Kindness Campaign

September 24, 2006

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

Our sister Maliha, she of the beautifully written stories and wisdom which can be found on her Lightness of Being blog, has begun a new project for Ramadan. It is a Kindness Campaign, and a blog in which we tell of random acts of kindness, toward our family, our friends, and toward total strangers. May Allah bless her noble efforts. The blog is called Senseless Acts of Beauty, but no act of beauty or kindness is senseless.

For those that would like to join her efforts to make Ramadan a month of kindness and charity, a month of fasting not only from food but from selfishness, please go to her blogs and contribute, inshallah. 

Ramadan Mubarak!

May Allah bless all who love and struggle in His name.

Ya Haqq!


O, My Servants

September 22, 2006

Salaam and Greetings of Peace: 

O My servants, I have forbidden oppression for Myself and have made it forbidden amongst you, so do not oppress one another. O My servants, all of you are astray except for those I have guided, so seek guidance of Me and I shall guide you, O My servants, all of you are hungry except for those I have fed, so seek food of Me and I shall feed you. O My servants, all of you are naked except for those I have clothed, so seek clothing of Me and I shall clothe you. O My servants, you sin by night and by day, and I forgive all sins, so seek forgiveness of Me and I shall forgive you. O My servants, you will not attain harming Me so as to harm Me, and will not attain benefiting Me so as to benefit Me. O My servants, were the first of you and the last of you, the human of you and the jinn of you to be as pious as the most pious heart of any one man of you, that would not increase My kingdom in anything. O My servants, were the first of you and the last of you, the human of you and the jinn of you to be as wicked as the most wicked heart of any one man of you, that would not decrease My kingdom in anything. O My servants, were the first of you and the last of you, the human of you and the jinn of you to rise up in one place and make a request of Me, and were I to give everyone what he requested, that would not decrease what I have, any more than a needle decreases the sea if put into it. O My servants, it is but your deeds that I reckon up for you and then recompense you for, so let him who finds good praise Allah and let him who finds other than good blame no one but himself.  

- A Hadith Qudsi (Divine Saying), on the authority of Abu Dharr al-Ghifari, related by Muslim, at-Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah.  

From a larger post by our worthy brother Abdur Rahman on his most excellent The Corner blog. 

Ya Haqq!


Wearing Hijab in Mecca

September 20, 2006

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

Today I walked by a mall in Jeddah where the Filipino and Western women walk around without Hijab and it was not a big deal.  And I walked by the crowds in the Haram and women wear Hijab and again it was not a big deal.

Then I walked by a Chadian homeless woman who made a little home next to a garbage bin where she collects cardboard and aluminum cans for recycling to make a few rials, where she made ablution with a little bottle of water and covered herself with modest fabrics to pray. Her kids loved her and kissed her all over when she prayed and that was a big deal.

The big deal is to be all these fancy things we read and write and talk about, while having nothing, while being a nobody.

- Dara

Our brother Dara, writing from Mecca in answer to a question on wearing hijab, from his Yahoo discussion group, The Sufi Notes.

Ya Haqq!


Thanks Giving

September 17, 2006

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

With Ramadan almost here, it will soon be a time not only of fasting, but of breaking the fast with thanksgiving. Before every meal, Sufis say, “Bismillah!” This is their way of saying Grace, for indeed they try to fast every day from what is other than God. Yet every human being who follows a spiritual path has their own way of being gracious, whose origin is Grace; the giving of thanks to God. 

Thanksgiving is sweeter than bounty itself.

One who cherishes gratitude does not cling to the gift!

Thanksgiving is the true meat of God’s bounty;

The bounty is its shell,

For thanksgiving carries you to the hearth of the Beloved.

Abundance alone brings heedlessness,

Thanksgiving gives birth to alertness.

The bounty of thanksgiving will satisfy and elevate you,

And you will bestow a hundred bounties in return.

Eat your fill of God’s delicacies,

And you will be freed from hunger and begging.

 

- Rumi

“With mealtime prayer we offer thanksgiving to the source of all sustenance. Prayer is a means by which the reins of hunger and the senses are taken by the spirit and intellect. The offering of a mealtime blessing elevates eating from a mechanical activity to conscious participation in the chain of being. It is an acknowledgment of the fact that in eating any organism, we are sharing in the sacrifice it has made to sustain us.”

Gratitude is an eagle, blessings a fine plump partridge
only gratitude wins the reward of blessing.
Give thanks to Him alone who buys
your words in the bazaar of Paradise.

- Nasir-i Khusraw

Excerpt from Serving the Guest – A Sufi Cookbook

Ya Haqq!


Supplication of the One God

September 16, 2006

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

The Messenger of God (pbuh) once heard a man supplicating: ‘O God, I supplicate You bearing witness that You are indeed God, that there is no deity but You, the One, the Self-Sustaining; who does not beget nor was begotten; who has no equal.’

Upon which, the Prophet (pbuh) said, ‘ By the One in whose hand is my soul, he has supplicated God by His supreme name. When God is called upon by it, He answers; When asked for something through it, He gives.’

- A Hadith taken from Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyya’s book – The Invocation Of God.

Originally posted on the most excellent and worthy Bismillah blog. Used with permission.

Ya Haqq!


Book Drive for Iraqi Kurdistan

September 13, 2006

 

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

 

Our dear Sufi Sister Miriam, of the Pearls of Irag blog, is starting a book drive to bring English language books to Iraqi Kurdistan. It is a truly worthy cause, and if anyone can provide some books, it will be a blessing.  Here are her words:

 

“As far as Iraq, my region, I am working with Kurdistan Save the Children and encouraging support to this successful organization. I am sponsoring a sweet little girl who lost her father to a landmine and having a book drive for English books for the Youth Centers in Kurdistan and for the street children in 2 special homes in Baghdad. http://www.ksc-kcf.com/ I am also looking into working with an American Muslim organization who are helping in the south of Iraq…The other book drive is for the University of Sulaimaniya, again for English books (text books and American fiction classics, any books for research) at the university level. An American University student group is helping me with this and I am open to additional partners. After Thanksgiving I hope to ship many books, inshallah, dependent on a helping partner over there. Otherwise, money will need to be raised for cargo and accompanying courier, but Allah will provide either way”

 

Below are guidelines for the book drive and an email address to contact her if you can donate to it: 

 

Guidelines for Kurdistan Save the Children and

University Book Drive

 

When selecting your donation of books for Iraq Kurdistan, a moderate but still a traditional society, think as a family valued parent, especially for the children’s and youth books. Comparative religious books and those dealing with interfaith dialogue are acceptable, but as a mostly Muslim region, sensitivity and respect to the Islamic faith and orthodox Christianity (the Assyrian and Chaldeans) is requested. Religious peacebuilding and dialogue books are welcome.

 

Children’s Books (age appropriate 8 years ++)

 

Fictional and non-fictional (non religious)

New books for children from birth to age 5 are always needed. Board books for babies and toddlers (the ones with the sturdy cardboard pages)

Picture books are great for the sponsored children

Arts and Crafts books, coloring books are valued also

 

Youth books (age appropriate 14++)

 

American classics especially

Youth oriented fiction

Nonfiction (appropriate for age level up to 18 years old)

Art and Music books, computer books, multi media including film/documentary production

Vocational Learning books, especially website design

 

University books (age appropriate 18++ years)

 

Text Books

Fictional Books especially American English Literature (specifically requested)

Research books and material

Vocational Learning books, especially website design

Agricultural and business development

Sufi, moderate comparative religious and cross-cultural books

Conflict reconciliation, dialogue and peacebuilding (specifically requested)

 

First Shipment Date (tentative): October 25, 2006

Second Shipment Date (tentative): December 6, 2006

 

Contact Information:

 

Miriam Sabirah Ashki

kurdistanbookdrive@yahoo.com

 

May Allah bless her for her courage and good works on behalf of us all.

 

Ya Haqq!


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