Happy New Year 2008 – A Resolution

December 30, 2007

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

Happy New Year to all my Brothers and Sister of every faith and race and creed around the world! May God bless you all this year with health, happiness, love and wisdom. I can think of no better resolution for the New Year than this beautiful prayer.

Lord, make me an instrument of Your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
Where there is sadness, joy.
Grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
To be understood as to understand;
To be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.

- Prayer of St. Francis of Assisi


Ya Haqq!


Recent Noteworthy Posts

December 29, 2007

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

To close out the year, here are five posts that you may have missed which you should read. They made me laugh and cry and think. One is from October, the rest from December. Inshallah, this may be a monthly feature.

Tariq Nelson – What Happened to Good Islam?

Writeous Sister Speaks – I Love Muslim Men

Achelois – Why Paradise Lies Under My Feet

Soaring Impulse – Tapestry

Lightness of Being – Life’s Largess

 

Ya Haqq!


“Lord, I Obey Willingly”

December 27, 2007

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

“Truly, to Allah we belong, and truly to Him we shall return.”Surah Al-Baqarah, Verse 156.

Imam Abu Hamid al-Ghazali woke up early one morning as usual, said his prayers, and then inquired what day it was. His younger brother, Ahmad al-Ghazali, replied,”Monday.” At that, the Imam asked him to bring his white shroud, kissed it, stretched himself full length and said, “Lord, I obey willingly.” And he breathed his last.

Underneath his head rest they found the following verse; composed by him, probably, during the night.

Say to my friends, when they look upon me dead
Weeping for me and mourning me in sorrow
Do not believe that this corpse you see is myself
In the name of God, I tell you, it is not I,
I am a spirit, and this is naught but flesh
It was my abode and my garment for a time.
I am a treasure, by a talisman kept hid,
Fashioned of dust, which served me as a shrine,
I am a pearl, which has left its shell deserted,
I am a bird, and this body was my cage
Whence I have now flown forth and it is left as a token
Praise to God, who hath now set me free
And prepared for me my place in the highest of the heavens,
Until today I was dead, though alive in your midst.
Now I live in truth, with the grave-clothes discarded.
Today I hold converse with the saints above,
With no veil between, I see God face to face.
I look upon Loh-i-Mahfuz* and therein I read
Whatever was and is and all that is to be.
Let my house fall in ruins, lay my cage in the ground,
Cast away the talisman, it is a token no more
Lay aside my cloak, it was but my outer garment.
Place them all in the grave, let them be forgotten,
I have passed on my way and you are left behind
Your place of abode was no dwelling place for me.
Think not that death is death, nay, it is life,
A life that surpasses all we could dream of here,
While in this world, here we are granted sleep,
Death is but sleep, sleep that shall be prolonged
Be not frightened when death draweth near,
It is but the departure for this blessed home
Think of the mercy and love of your Lord,
Give thanks for His Grace and come without fear.
What I am now, even so shall you be
For I know that you are even as I am
The souls of all men come forth from God
The bodies of all are compounded alike
Good and evil, alike it was ours
I give you now a message of good cheer
May God’s peace and joy for evermore be yours.


Ya Haqq!

Note: *Loh-i Mahfuz, or Umm-al Kitab, is the Preserved Tablet, which has inscribed on it the original attributes of each creation, its function and relationship to other creations in the Universe.

- Originally from the Jannah.org website.


Inspiring Children’s Anecdotes, Poems and Stories Wanted!

December 25, 2007

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

A friend online sent me this. His name is Paul Martin, the author of the upcoming book Original Faith.

“Do you have an inspiring child anecdote, story, or poem to post on your blog? It might concern your own child, someone else’s child, or come from your own childhood.

After you post it on your blog, email the permalink by Friday January 4th to martin22204 [at] yahoo.com with “child diablog” in your subject line. Please spread the word and provide a link to this post at Original Faith so your readers will know about the Spirited Child Diablog too.”

On Sunday January 6th I’ll post submitted links along with a brief description of each.

For more information, click Paul’s blog HERE.

Then go to the December 11th post.

Ya Haqq!


Dear God, Help Us Remember…

December 22, 2007

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

Heavenly Father, Help us
remember that the jerk who cut us off in traffic last night is a single mother who worked nine hours that day and is rushing home to cook dinner, help with homework, do the laundry and spend a few precious moments with her children.

Help us to remember that the
pierced, tattooed, disinterested young man who can’t make change correctly is a worried 19-year-old college student, balancing his apprehension over final exams with his fear of not getting his student loans for next semester.

Remind us, Lord, that the scary
looking bum, begging for money in the same spot every day (who really ought to get a job!) is a slave to addictions that we can only imagine in our worst nightmares.

Help us to remember that the old
couple walking annoyingly slow through the store aisles and blocking our shopping progress are savoring this moment, knowing that, based on the biopsy report she got back last week, this will be the last year that they go shopping together.

Heavenly Father, remind us each
day that, of all the gifts you give us, the greatest gift is love. It is not enough to share that love with those we hold dear. Open our hearts not just to those who are close to us, but to all humanity. Let us be slow to judge and quick to forgive, show patience, empathy and love.

- Author Unknown

- Reposted with permission from the Divine Remembrance blog.

Ya Haqq!


Teaching the Torah on One Foot

December 18, 2007

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

A certain cynical man went to the house of Rabbi Hillel, and said mockingly, “Your Torah, your wonderful Torah! I will become your student if you can teach it to me while I stand on one foot.”

Now Rabbi Hillel knew that the man was mocking his tradition, as there is never an end to the study of the Torah, but he said, “Very well, I shall teach you the whole Torah, and I will do so while I also stand on one foot!” So the Rabbi stood on one foot and said, “This is our Holy Torah: What is hateful to you, do not do unto others.”

Then he put his foot down and looked directly at the man, and said, “That is the meaning of the whole Torah. All the rest is commentary.” The man instantly became a disciple of the great Rabbi.

- Edited from a posting on the Sufi Family Yahoo Group.

Ya Haqq!

 


Rumi’s ‘Nuptial Night’ – December 17th

December 16, 2007

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

On December 17th, 1273 AD, Mevlana Jalal al-din Rumi died at Konya. A universal genius, one of the greatest servants of humanity, founder of the Mevlevi Sufi Brotherhood, his poetry and doctrine advocates unlimited tolerance, positive reasoning, goodness and charity, and awareness through love. Looking with the same eye on Muslim, Jew and Christian alike, his peaceful and tolerant teaching has reached men of all sects and creeds.

The 17th of December is called Sheb-i Arus, meaning ‘Nuptial Night’ or ‘Wedding Night’. The night of his death is called thus because of the union of Mevlana with God. As Rumi’s epitaph states:

‘When we are dead, seek not our tomb in the earth, but find it in the hearts of men.’

Since this year is the 800th Anniversary of his birth, it is also fitting that we celebrate his death and his ultimate union with the Beloved.

Ya Haqq!


The Purple Zebra and the Tired Mule

December 15, 2007

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

The purple zebra dances to the song of the long Moon.
Staring into the clear darkness, the beaten mule continues on its arduous journey.

Rejected by the donkey and the horse, the mule is never accepted for what it truly is.

The purple zebra is surrounded by the townspeople, captivating those foolish ones.
All the while, the mule continues up and down the mountain valleys bringing all of the town’s supplies, so that the people may survive.

Having spent many years in the desert wastes, being burned by the fires of Love…The purple zebra is free from the mistakes of the townspeople,
it is a true lover of the long Moon. It is deaf and blind to their praise and presence.

It is only natural for these people, who are lost in the clear darkness to become attracted to this beautiful flame when it arrives.

The mule was forgotten long before the purple zebra arrived… never having a place of recognition to begin with.

All the townspeople surround the purple zebra like bees around the Queen’s hive, dancing in joy and forgetfulness…

Though it may seem the mule is the forgotten, it is really those occupied people who are forgotten… and limited.

Unwavering in its efforts, the worn old mule continues to serve the people, beaten and exhausted… it never forgets to give thanks to the
One who remembers him. The One who has made him His…and His alone.

- by Atabek, dedicated to Sheikh Abul Abbas al-Mursi (rahmatullaalaih). May God sanctify his soul.

Note: This story/poem was sent by a young friend online, and is a good reminder of the two kinds of true seekers, the silent ones in the backround who do the work, and the visible ones who attract attention. Both serve a purpose. It is good to remember that for every Sufi saint that has been written about, there are many others whose names no one knows but God.
Ya Haqq!


We Are All Meant to Shine!

December 13, 2007

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God.
Your playing small does not serve the world.
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.
We are all meant to shine, as children do.
We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us.
It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone.
And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.

- A Return to Love by Marianne Williamson

 

Ya Haqq!


Simply for Love!

December 9, 2007

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

All this burning for God… All this submitting to his trials and suffering with patience and reverence, the terrible afflictions. My my my… My pain, my suffering, my agonies, and particularly – my tormented soul. I become ashamed that I might be doing so much of this. Perhaps God might be happier if we were simply kinder to our spouses and children, and went about the daily traffic of our lives with a glad heart. Oh the power of a kind word! Perhaps we might best exhibit devotion in our daily, mundane, oh so ordinary acts simply for the sake of doing so, simply for Love, without even the idea of gaining favor in God’s eyes. Let me sing the daily sacrifices of Love for the sake of Love! Oh, let us love those we are traveling with as much as we possibly are able, and let us show them this love with every thing they bring to us. Let us show what we truly believe to be God’s mercy in our kindness. Let us not turn an angry shoulder or leave them unconsoled. Let us be grateful for even the opportunity to love them! What a gift! And let us do this year in and year out on the long path of our ordinary days and be glad of it!

- From the notebook of my beloved wife.

Ya Haqq!


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