On Death

March 29, 2008

Death is not extinguishing the light;
it is only putting out the lamp
because the dawn has come.

- Rabindranath Tagore

Ya Haqq!


Master of the Jinn in URDU

March 27, 2008

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

Alhamdulillah! Master of the Jinn is now being translated into Urdu. Brother Nadeem in Pakistan, who is also a darvish of a Sufi Order, is the main translator. He sends out each translated section to his friends and fellow darvishes and asks for suggestions. The best ones are incorporated into the final translation :)

If you want to read what there is so far of the Urdu translation, email me at Irvingk1945 at gmail dot com, and I will send it to you in .pdf format.

Ya Haqq!


Oceanography

March 24, 2008

Do some kinds of shellfish
live past the outgrowing of their shells?
Is there the possibility for them
Of easing out slowly
from the constraining tightness?
Such a beautiful shell
spiral bound, glistening with stars.

Is there a shellfish
that releases it’s hold
and slides free
into the weightless wonder
of the moving tides,
Homeless in the immensity?

What wonder
To feel this easing in the human experience.
The unhooking from the moorings
The smooth glide out into the total vulnerability
with the willingness to be another’s dinner
no more protection is needed
There is nothing to do
But find the current
And go.

– Alice Gardner

Note: Alice Gardner is the author of Life Beyond Belief: Everyday Living as Spiritual Practice.  You can read more of her lovely poems HERE.

 


 

 



Isa ibn Mariyam – Jesus, the Son of Mary

March 22, 2008

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

Happy Easter to all my Christian brothers and sisters :)

Most people in the West do not know that Hazrat Muhammad al-Ghazali (may Allah keep his secret), who was called The Proof of The Faith, collected and authenticated several of the original saying of Isa ibn Mariyam (Jesus the son of Mary) in Aramaic (the language that Jesus spoke) and translated them into Arabic.

In al Ghazali’s time, 10th -11th century CE, there were still Christians who were unaffected by the doctrines of Paul. The Church founded by Judas Thomas for instance, was still strong in Syria and protected by the Khalifate.

It was written in the original Gospel:

Isa ibn Mariyam (AS) said:
Seek what you do not Know only after you
have put into practice what you do Know.

The disciples of Isa ibn Mariyam (AS) came to him and asked;
“O spirit of Allah, is there anyone else like you alive in our time?”
He replied: “Yes indeed, Whoever has the dhikr of Allah in his heart,
and is silent in thought, and who learns from what is given,
surely that one is like me.”

Isa ibn Mariyam (AS), asked his people:
“Where do you find a plant growing?”
They replied: “In the dust of the earth.”
He said: “By Al Haqq, I will tell you,
Marifat (Gnosis) does not grow except in a heart
that is like the dust of the earth.”

Isa ibn Mariyam (AS) met a man and asked him what his profession was.
The man replied: “I worship Allah.”
Isa (AS) then asked: ‘Who feeds and clothes you while you worship?”
“My brother,” The man replied.
Isa (AS) said: “Your brother’s worship is better than your own.”

Isa ibn Mariyam (AS) met three people while traveling,
They were pale and thin with fasting.
He asked them: “What has caused this state in you?”
They said: “Fear of the punishment of Allah”
Isa (AS) replied: “Allah has taken it upon Himself to lessen your fear.”
He continued on a ways and came across three more
who were pale and thin with fasting, even more than the last.
He asked them: “What has caused this state in you?”
They answered: “Desire for Allah’s rewards”
Isa (AS) said: “Allah has taken it upon Himself to give you what you long for.”
Once again in his travels Isa ibn Mariyam (AS) came across yet another three who were pale and thin with fasting. Their faces shone as if they were lit from within.
So he asked them: “What is the cause of your state?”
They answered: “We love Allah, the Mighty, the Glorious.”
Whereupon he replied: “You are the nearest, and nearer still!”

The companions of Isa ibn Mariyam (AS) said to him:
“Look at this temple, is it not beautiful?”
Isa (AS) replied: “My people,
by al Haqq I tell you, Allah does not leave this temple standing
except to destroy it by the sins of it’s inhabitants.
Surely, Allah does not care about gold and silver,
He does not care about this building that you admire so.
What Allah, the Most High loves are good hearts.
Allah inhabits the heart that remembers Him and He desolates
the heart that does not.”

Isa ibn Mariyam (AS),
passed by a group of men who shouted evil things at him.
In return Isa (AS) spoke to them with kindness.
His companions asked:
“Why did you reply to these men with kindness when they spoke evil to you?”
Isa (AS) replied: “Everyone spends from the coin he has.”

The song of Isa ibn Mariyam (AS)

My meal is fasting,
my standard is awe of Allah.
My clothing is of simple wool,
my prayer in winter is at suns rise.
My lamp is moonlight,
My steed is my legs.
My meal is whatever the earth gives me.
I lay down to sleep at night and have nothing,
I awake in the morning and have nothing,
yet there is no one richer than I.

– From The Traceless Warrior Blog. Commentary and English versions translated by Mushtaq Ali al Ansari. Copyright 1999. All rights reserved. Used with permission.

Ya Haqq!


March 20th, Birthday of the Prophet (pbuh), New Year, Spring

March 19, 2008

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

“You have indeed in the Messenger of God a beautiful pattern of conduct for anyone whose hope is God and the Final Day.” (Al-Ahzab 33:21).

Alhamdulillah! The moon is full, a reminder that this is Rabi a-Awwal, by the Lunar calendar the month of the blessed birthday (Milad Un-Nabi) of the Prophet Muhammad (the peace and blessing of Allah be upon him and his family).

According to Sunni scholars, the Prophet’s birthday is observed on 12th Rabi al-Awwal, which falls on March 20, 2008, and 17th Rabi al-Awwal (march 25th this year) according to Shia scholars.

March 20th is also the first day of Spring, and celebrated as Nawrooz, the New Year in Iran and other countries. What a blessing that the birth of the Prophet (pbuh) should fall on the first day of Spring and the New Year, surely a sign of rebirth and love as we contemplate his noble attributes and teachings.

There is a difference of opinion about whether the Milad Un-Nabi should be a time of celebration. There is evidence that the Prophet (pbuh), his Companions, and the early followers after them did not celebrate or otherwise observe his birthday. On the contrary, he was careful to warn his people not to imitate other faiths, whose followers elevated their prophets and added to the religion what was not in the original teachings.

Those who disagree see it as a time to read the Qur’an, fast, pray, and remember the life, teachings, and example of the Prophet (pbuh).

When praising the Prophet (pbuh), we are also warned not to exaggerate in his praise. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Do not overpraise me as Christians overpraised Jesus, son of Mary. Say [when referring to me], ‘Servant of Allah and His messenger.'”

Servant of Allah and His messenger!

Surely that is a title that needs no embellishment. And so, what will you do to celebrate the Prophet’s (pbuh) birthday? Will you be fasting and praying? Having a celebration and giving gifts to family and friends? Giving to charity, visiting the sick, going to the mosque, helping a neighbor?

“Remember Me and I will remember you!” (Qur’an, 2:152)

May Allah bless you all, gentle readers, and guide you on the straight path of love, compassion, mercy, generosity and kindness.

Ameen.

Ya Haqq!


The Beauty of Mathematics and the Love of God

March 16, 2008

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

Here is an interesting and lovely way to look at the beauty of mathematics, and of God, the sum of all wonders.


1 x 8 + 1 = 9
12 x 8 + 2 = 98
123 x 8 + 3 = 987
1234 x 8 + 4 = 9876
12345 x 8 + 5 = 987
65
123456 x 8 + 6 = 987654
1234567 x 8 + 7 = 9876543
12345678 x 8 + 8 = 98765432
123456789 x 8 + 9 = 987654321


1 x 9 + 2 = 11
12 x 9 + 3 = 111
123 x 9 + 4 = 1111
1234 x 9 + 5 = 11111
12345 x 9 + 6 = 111111
123456 x 9 + 7 = 1111111
1234567 x 9 + 8 = 11111111
12345678 x 9 + 9 = 111111111
123456789 x 9 +10= 1111111111


9 x 9 + 7 = 88
98 x 9 + 6 = 888
987 x 9 + 5 = 8888
9876 x 9 + 4 = 88888
98765 x 9 + 3 = 888888
987654 x 9 + 2 = 8888888
9876543 x 9 + 1 = 88888888
98765432 x 9 + 0 = 888888888

Brilliant, isn’t it?


And look at this symmetry:

1 x 1 = 1
11 x 11 = 121
111 x 111 = 12321
1111 x 1111 = 1234321
11111 x 11111 = 123454321
111111 x 111111 = 12345654321
1111111 x 1111111 = 1234567654321
11111111 x 11111111 = 123456787654321
111111111 x 111111111 = 12345678987654321

Now, take a look at this…

101%

From a strictly mathematical viewpoint:

What Equals 100%?

What does it mean to give MORE than 100%?

Ever wonder about those people who say they are giving more than 100%?

We have all been in situations where someone wants you to

GIVE OVER 100%.

How about ACHIEVING 101%?

What equals 100% in life?

Here’s a little mathematical formula that might help

Answer these questions:

If:

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Is represented as:

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26.

If:

H-A-R-D-W-O-R- K

8+1+18+4+23+15+18+11 = 98%

And:

K-N-O-W-L-E-D-G-E

11+14+15+23+12+5+4+7+5 = 96%

But:

A-T-T-I-T-U-D-E

1+20+20+9+20+21+4+5 = 100%

THEN, look how far the love of God will take you:

L-O-V-E-O-F-G-O-D

12+15+22+5+15+6+7+15+4 = 101%

Therefore, one can conclude with mathematical certainty that:

While Hard Work and Knowledge will get you close, and Attitude will
Get you there, It’s the Love of God that will put you over the top!

Sent by brother Ameer via email. May Allah bless him for his kindness :)

Ya Haqq,

PS  For another example of God’s infinite love and mercy, check out Master of the Jinn: A Sufi Novel, by clicking HERE.


The Prophet (pbuh) and the Blind Man

March 10, 2008

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

“He frowned and turned away when a blind man came his way. How do you know if (his heart) might be purified or recall (God) and by recollection be rectified? For those who are called wealthy, you attend to them closely and don’t bother if they are purified! Yet from one who comes to you hopeful, fearful and clearly humble, you let your attention be shunted aside.” - (Qur’an 80:1-12)

This Quranic verse, directed toward the Prophet himself (pbuh), is the harshest reminder in the revelation itself of allowing oneself to be distracted by the affairs of the world, and thereby, even momentarily, losing the insight of its true teachings of love and compassion, kindness and guidance in the worship of Allah, the One who has no partners.

It is further related that Aisha, the wife of the Prophet (pbuh), said that if any chapter of the Qur’an could be wiped out, he had wished it would be this short chapter entitled, He Frowned, that addresses him as the one who frowned and chastises him for his treatment of the blind man.

The old and feeble blind man came seeking some knowledge about the new religion of Islam, but his arrival interrupted an important meeting of Arab tribal elders, powerful and rich men, who, if they had embraced the religion, would have greatly strengthened the community, which was under constant threat.

The Prophet (pbuh) had done what almost any other leader would do in looking out for his community through practical means; he ignored the blind man and continued to talk to the powerful tribal elders.

Alhamdulillah! He admonishes even His own Prophet (pbuh) for ignoring the true seeker, for not taking a moment to answer the old blind man. Most certainly this would have been a real lesson to the tribal elders about the new religion of Islam.

Allah knows the truth.

May Allah bless us and grant us all the insight of this lesson and guide us to what is truly important in life.

Ameen.

 

Ya Haqq!


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