A Special Ramadan Du’a (Prayer)

June 6, 2016

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

Ramadan Mubarak!

The following is a du’a that is constantly read in Tarim, a town in the Wadi Hadhramawt, Yemen, throughout the blessed month of Ramadan. This beneficial du’a has been translated and made available through Sidi Amin Buxton (Allah preserve and increase him):

Sayyiduna Salman narrates that the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and grant him peace) spoke to the Companions on the last day of Sha`ban. He informed them that they were about to enter a great and blessed month, a month in which there is a night better than a thousand nights. He mentioned some of the merits of the month of Ramadan. Then he said: “Do four things in abundance: two things with which you please your Lord, and two things which you cannot do without. As for the two things with which you please your Lord: your testification that there is nothing worthy of worship other than Allah and your seeking His forgiveness. As for the two things which you cannot do without: your asking Allah for Paradise and seeking refuge in Him from the Fire.”1

The Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and grant him peace) taught al-Sayyida `A’isha to say on Laylat al-Qadr:

“O Allah, truly You are all-Pardoning, You love to pardon so pardon us.”2

On the basis of these two hadiths the scholars and people of Tarim repeat the following du`a throughout the month of Ramadan:

أشْهَدُ أن لا إلهَ إلا الله نَسْتَغْفِرُ الله نسأَلُكَ الجنَّةَ ونَعُوذُ بِكَ مِنْ النَّار (3)

Ashadu alla ilaha illallah, nastaghfirullah, nas’aluk’l-jannata wa na`audhu bika min an-nar

“I testify that there is nothing worthy of worship other than Allah and we seek the forgiveness of Allah. We ask You for Paradise and take refuge in You from the Fire.” (3 times)

اللهمَّ انَّكَ عَفُوٌ تُحبُّ العفْوَ فَاعْفُ عَنَّا (3) يا كريم

Allahumma innaka `afuwun tuhibbu-l’`afwa f`afwa `anna

“O Allah, truly You are all-Pardoning, You love to pardon so pardon us” (3 times). On the third time say “O Most Generous” (Ya Karim).

1 Narrated by Ibn Khuzayma

2 Narrated by Ahmad, Ibn Majah and Tirmidhi with a sahih chain of transmission.

Note: Wadi Hadhramawt is a 220-mile wadi (seasonal river valley) which has a collection of 31 small sultanates with Aden in the middle. Hadhramawt is the biggest wadi in the Arabian Peninsula and runs for 99 miles through a stony desert. This area has been settled since at least the 3rd century AD and brilliant green fields ran alongside the wadi.

Ya Haqq!


Laylat al-Miraj – The Night Journey!

June 15, 2012

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

Glory to Allah! Exalted is He who did take His Servant by night from the Sacred Mosque ( al-Masjid al-Haram) to the farthest Mosque ( al-Masjid al- Aqsa), whose precincts We did bless, that We might show him of Our signs. Indeed, He is the Hearing, the Seeing.     – Qur’an 17:1

For indeed he saw him at a second descent,
Near the Lote-tree beyond which none may pass:
Near it is the
Garden of Abode.
Behold, the Lote-tree was shrouded (in mystery unspeakable!)
(His) sight never swerved, nor did it go wrong!
For truly did he see of the Signs of his Lord, the Greatest!

– Qur’an, 53: 13-18

Alhamdulillah! This Saturday evening, June 16th, or the 17th in some parts of the world, is Laylat al-Miraj – The Night Journey.

The story of the Night Journey focuses on how the Prophet Muhammad’s (saw) heart was purified by the archangel Gabriel, who filled him with knowledge and faith in preparation to enter the seven levels of heaven. The exact date of the Journey is not clear, but is celebrated as though it took place before the Hijra and after Muhammad’s visit to the people of Ta’if. It is considered by some to have happened just over a year before the Hijra, on the 27th of Rajab. The Al-Aqsa Mosque and surrounding area, with the Dome of the Rock marking the place from which Muhammad is believed to have ascended to heaven, is the third-holiest place on earth for Muslims.

May Allah bless us all this Laylat al-Miraj, with the bounty of increased prayer, faith, and wisdom to discern His signs, on the horizons and in ourselves. Amin!

 

Ya Haqq!


In God’s Hands

May 30, 2012

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

“I have held many things in my hands, and I have lost them all: but whatever I have placed in God’s hands, that I still possess.”

Martin Luther

 

Ya Haqq!


“…those who spend for Allah’s sake…”

August 20, 2011

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

“The likeness of those who spend for Allah’s sake is as the likeness of a grain of corn; it grows seven ears, every single ear has a hundred grains, and Allah multiplies (increases the reward) for whom He wills, and Allah is sufficient for His creatures’ needs, All-Knower.”  – (Qur’an, 2:261)

“Those who (in charity) spend of their goods by night and by day, in secret and in public. have their reward with their Rabb (God, the Sustainer). On them shall be no fear nor shall they grieve.”  – (Qur‘an, 2:274)

Ya Haqq!


Sufi Masters and Disciples of Imagination

May 26, 2011

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

A man came to Sufi Master Bahaudin Shah Naqshband and said: “First I followed this teacher and then that one. Next I studied these books and then those. I feel that although I know nothing of you and your teachings, this experience has been slowly preparing me to learn from you.”

Bahaudin Shah said: “Nothing you have learned in the past will help you here. If you are to stay with us, you’ll have to abandon all pride in the past. That is a form of self-congratulation.”

This is true of any mystical path, and almost every initiate, and is a product of their subjective thinking and ego-centered imagination, the very habits the Master strives to cure them of.  As my own late Master, Dr. Javad Nurbakhsh, noted in one of this lectures, Sufis Who Are Disciples of Their Own Imaginations:

Most people who are drawn to the path of Sufism and become disciples of a master have, in fact, an image of the master in their minds, expecting the master to act according to this subjective image of theirs. If, after a while, they come to conclude that the master is not acting according to their mental image, they decide to leave this master, because, from their point of view, the master has not performed according to their expectations, and in point of fact they expect the master to be the disciple of their own mental image, otherwise they conclude that he or she is not a good master.

For ages the saying has been “The master’s infidelity is the disciple’s faith,” meaning that if the master says something contrary to the disciple’s beliefs, or does something against the disciple’s wishes, and the disciple remains loyal to him, it is proof that the disciple truly has faith in the master. There are very few disciples in the school of Sufism who love their master as he is and not as they would like him to be. For this reason, a true Sufi is a rare thing in this world. Most come through their imagination, and leave through their imagination.

– Edited from Discourses on the Sufi Path, by Dr. Javad Nurbakhsh.

Ya Haqq!


There is Only One River

April 27, 2011

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

“Sufism is not different from the mysticism of all religions. Mysticism comes from Adam, of monks, of hermits, and of Muhammad (God’s peace be upon him). A river passes through many countries and each claims it for its own. But there is only one river. Truth does not change. People change. People try to possess truth and keep it for themselves, keep it from others. But you cannot own the truth.”  – Sheikh Muzaffer Ozak

Ya Haqq!


The Buddhist Master’s Question

April 14, 2011

Salaam and Greetings of Peace:

A Buddhist Master asks, “How do you know when the night has ended and the dawn has come?”  A student replies, “When I can tell a donkey apart from the hay.” Another says, “When I can see my hands clearly.” The master responds, “The night is over and the dawn has come when you look into a stranger’s eyes and instead of seeing something to judge, you see your brother or sister.”

 

Ya Haqq!