Sufism is a school for the acquisition of knowledge and purification. This school is instituted to understand the truth and to acquire an understanding of the divine mysteries of the room of secrecy. By means of that education, the essence of all knowledge is going to be understood. Its principal purpose is to purify the soul: I have entered this way as an important, great person, I have learned I am but an insignificant atom. This is the aim of sufism. To reach that state, sufism is indispensable. It is a necessary path for every Muslim.
Its necessity is proclaimed by the Holy verses. Almighty Allah enjoins in His Holy verse:
“For each We have appointed a divine law and a traced-out way.” (Maida: 48)
His Excellency, Fahruddin-i Râzi and some other commentators on the Qur’an, interpreted the above Holy verse as follows: “O My Servants! I have made two things obligatory on each of you. Firstly shariat (Canonical obligations) and then tariqat (religious order, dervish order). The word “minhaj” (traced-out way) mentioned in the holy verse means “enlightened way.”
There are many holy verses that reinforce Almighty Allah’s command.
As Allah, Almighty, prescribed regular prayers by the following verse:
“Offer prayers perfectly for My Remembrance.” (Tâhâ: 14)
In the following holy verse, He also ordered His slaves to remember His praises:
“O you who believe!
Remember Allah with much remembrance.” (Ahzab: 41)
Regular prayers are a divine command, remembering Allah is also a divine command.
Both regular prayers and remembering Allah are divine commands.
When our master, the Prophet -peace be upon him- received the order of reciting the holy words of Allah, because men’s temperaments differ with regards to creation, he ordered our master Abu Bakr -may Allah be pleased with him- His excellency to remember Allah by heart and Ali -may Allah be pleased with him- His excellency, to remember Him loudly and also to teach this to the people.
And this path has survived from that time to now with continuous succession in the hands and hearts of the leaders of religious (dervish) orders. It is fixed by general report. During each epoch, great communities have acknowledged its truth.
Imam-ý Rabbâni His Excellency states:
“To deny in the religion something fixed by general agreement is disbelief.”
In a holy verse, it is commanded:
“When you have finished the prayer, remember Allah standing, sitting down and lying down on your sides.” (Nisa: 103)
Those, who obey this decree, obtain Allah’s love.
People perceiving only outwardly consider the remembering mentioned in the holy verses and the respected Hadiths to be merely the regular prayers. Because they do not know their ignorance, they look at the truths with closed eyes. Reality remains concealed until they turn to their inside world and pass to hidden meanings.
Almighty Allah describes the Muslims “sinner” in the following Holy verse as those who take no heed of remembering:
“And be not like those who forgot Allah and He caused them to forget themselves. Such are the evil-doers.” (Hashr: 19)
For a servant being loved by Allah the Greatest is dependent on loving and occupying oneself with the remembrance of Allah.
That is to say, we must follow the shariat (religious laws) of Allah’s Messenger -peace be upon him- to embellish ourselves and the religious order (tariqat) to make luminous our inward world.
The external order is founded by the shariat, the interior one by the tariqat.
Passing to the inward world is only gained by performing the prescribed and recommended worship. Because as a body is responsible for the performance of prescribed duties, the spirit is also charged with the recommended worship.
It is a clear reality that a man can not acquire moral nourishment if he does not conform in words and actions to the shariat. This is like a sick man who does not pay attention to diet while using medicine.
It should be known that all the tariqats have been instituted by the command of Allah the Most Supreme. All the principles of the tariqats are based on the shariat. A tariqat that is contradictory to Islam is essentially not a tariqat.
Sufism is not only knowledge of speech but also a science of condition and application. It can not be comprehended and made known by theoretical learning without practicing, tasting, feeling it.
The aim of entering a Tariqat-ý aliye (Exalted religious order) is to obtain faith in things to be believed in the shariat (Religious laws). And this is the real faith.
For instance, a man believes in Allah’s existence, firstly by hearing; his faith in Him then matures through observation, experience.
The difficulties produced by nefs-i ammara (soul), which prevent man from performing worship, disappear; prayers are lovingly and easily accomplished.
A few false guides, being men of bigotry, pretend to be the people of knowledge in order to deceive ignorant men and cause misunderstanding about sufism.
The Enlightened Tariqat consists only of the words and conduct of our master, the Exalted Prophet, -may Allah commend and salute him. Its source is the Holy Qur’an and the Hadiths. It has remained pure and it has not lost anything from its originality. Over the centuries, sufism has been the reason for the preservation of morals in Islam, the elimination of depravity and sedition, the institution of genuine brotherhood, the formation of unity and solidarity, the treatment of humanity’s spiritual illnesses, and the perfection of faith. With that hidden abundance, the divine orders will survive till the Last Day.
Like in every age, sufism today is present in its original essence. Especially in the Nakshibendi tariqat, a perfect guide will always exist until the end of the world. That special room has been passed through from room to room, link to link, and never deteriorating.
The Messenger of Allah -peace be upon him- said:
“Let every door that leads into the mosque be closed, except the door of Abu Bakr.”
Shekh Es’ad: -may Allah sanctify his secret- His Excellency interpreted the above Hadith as follows:
“My Allah! When the guides of all tarikats ceased, make permanent the way of Abu Bakr, till the Last Day.”
As Allah the Most Great has always provided scholars to teach the external sciences, He has also ensured men of tariqat in order to teach spiritual knowledge.
Although he was called “the Proof of Islam” Imam Ghazali directed himself towards sufism. After tasting the pleasure of it, he articulated his feelings and his condition as follows:
“.... Then I examined my position, I was completely surprised that I have been totally submerged in worldly affairs. Those attachments have totally surrounded me. I have examined my activities. But in this field too, I have seen that I am occupied with sciences that are not important nor useful for the way to the Hereafter.
Then I inspected my intention for teaching. And I became convinced that it is not for Allah’s Approval but for acquiring a reputation and a high respectable place in society. I concluded that I am on the way to a tragic end and if I do not correct myself I will be in the Fire.”
“I understood for certain that dervishes (sufis) are really those who have found Allah’s way. Their course is the most beautiful one. Their way is the straightest one, their morals are the purest ones.
Even if the arguments of all the intelligent people in the world, the wisdom of all men of wisdom, the knowledge of all scholars who know minute details of the shariat; they can not achieve in changing anything from the sufis’ conduct and morals and replacing it with a better thing.
Their whole external and inner acts and feelings are derived from the light of the lamp of Prophethood. There is no source of light, or guide to the right way on earth other than the light of Prophethood.”
WHAT IS A TARIQAT
THE EXALTED TARIQAT IS AN ARMY:
It has an esteemed organization. The first struggle is against one’s own soul, then against those gone astray when necessary and includes also striving in the Cause of Allah with one’s wealth. But I should inform you that the most important struggle is the one with the pen, is called “The Greatest Jihad”
Striving against your own soul is very important. Because the other jihad is ineffective if one’s soul has not been purified. We have said about this matter: “O ascetic! I see you are ready to conquer. But you are not aware that you have been conquered. First of all turn to your inside, recognize your inward enemy and save your home and its rooms from occupation.”
Because of this, man should first conquer his own soul. After its conquering, he will act by His approval. Otherwise, with the internal idol, to conquer others is impossible. First, break your inner idol, then struggle for conquering.
You fight with five or ten enemies but by the pen you strive with millions. Therefore, struggling by the pen is referred to as the “greatest jihad.”
By explaining this, I encourage you to struggle. And when you perform this in the name of Allah, without doubt, He helps you; your supporter and protector becomes Him. Even if the whole universe is against you, nothing can harm you if He wills.
Therefore, a man participating in such an army should act consciously. He must strive in the cause of Allah with his body, wealth, pen, and against his own soul.
The noble Prophet -may Allah commend and salute him- commands:
“To strive in the cause of Allah is incumbent on you all.”
This path is so disciplined that spiritual commanders direct it. Its commander-in-chief is the representative of our master, the Messenger of Allah -peace be upon him.
Allah, Exalted and Glorified, has granted such a favor to the leaders of this path that their goal is not to reach but to cause to reach. A spiritual commander thinks of the safety of his army but not of his own security.
THE EXALTED TARIQAT
IS A HOSPITAL:
It is such a hospital whose main doctor is the Pride of all beings, Muhammad -peace be upon him. The perfect guides who are the representatives of him are the doctors of that hospital.
As the Messenger of Allah -may Allah commend and salute him- has ordered us to seek treatment for disease, he has also commanded us to refer to a spiritual doctor in order to be free from spiritual diseases.
These spiritual sicknesses are important:
“In their hearts is a disease.” (Baqara: 10)
The terrible diseases mentioned in the holy verse are very dangerous if not healed, for they destroy the eternal life of man.
A diseased man can not enjoy food until his disease is treated. Similarly, one whose heart is sick can not enjoy the taste of acts of worship.
Bad qualities such as bearing grudges, haughtiness, vanity, lust, hypocrisy, greed, jealousy, mendacity, slander, suspicion... are the diseases of the heart.
We have come to this world with a pure heart. In order to preserve that goodness, it should be polished to remove the rust of bad moral qualities, the characteristics of beasts.
To recover from the diseases we have to remember Almighty Allah much according to this honorable hadith:
“Remembrance of Allah is the healing of hearts.”
In the remembrance of Allah the rooms of heart such as spirit, sýr, hâfâ, ahfâ are saved from the occupation of soul. Lastly, if the room of nefs-i kul is also saved, the spirit acquires sovereignty, the lights of cheerfulness turn on; man repents for his evil acts; he does not only give up committing those deeds but also ceases to think of them.
Thereafter, that man is purified from bestial and bad moral qualities. He achieves maturity. His whole body moves according to the divine regulations.
Allah, the Exalted, chooses the followers of His path since eternity. Man can not enter the exalted tariqat but His Lord should accept him to it. Moreover, men who are accepted from eternity to the exalted tariqat need to be operated on. Perfect Guides who are the heirs of the Messenger of Allah -may Allah commend and salute him- can only perform this medical operation. Those Perfect Guides, being surgeons, carry out operations in order to give spiritual sustenance, to eradicate the roots of worldly desires, (all else besides Allah) in the heart, to throw out Satan, to enlarge the heart, to sow the seeds of knowledge about Allah.
THE EXALTED TARIQAT
IS A BAZAAR:
It is in such a bazaar that a man has to strive in the cause of Allah with his wealth and life to be able to trade with Allah, Exalted and Glorified. What a noble prosperity to attain the honor of trading with the Creator.
Allah the Most Supreme has declared:
“Verily, Allah has purchased of the believers their lives and their properties; for the price that theirs shall be the Paradise. They fight in Allah’s Cause, so they kill (others) and are killed.” (Tavba: 111)
It is necessary for the one entering that field to entreat: “My Allah! I have accepted this commerce, approve it of me and make it easy” and he must never leave this field. Since you have sworn together with Almighty Allah and accepted this trade, you have no right to be in opposition.
He commands in His other holy verse as follows:
“O you who believe! Shall I guide you to a commerce that will save you from a painful torment?” (Saff: 10)
This is asked for encouragement. Then Allah, the Exalted, explains this commerce:
“That you believe in Allah and His Messenger and that you strive hard and fight in the Cause of Allah with your wealth and your lives, that will be better for you, if you but know!” (Saff: 11)
Commerce is to make profit with a desired yield by using one’s property, work and all talents. From this point of view, faith and struggle in Allah’s path have been likened to commerce. A believer who strives with his wealth and life has worked to escape himself from a painful torment, to get great reward in the sight of Allah. He converted his material profit into a spiritual one because he spent it in the way of Allah. The real profit of this commerce will be seen in the Hereafter.
“(If you do so) He will forgive you your sins and bring you into Gardens underneath which rivers flow, and pleasant dwellings in Gardens of Eden. That is the supreme triumph.
This commerce can never be compared to the worldly one.
Allah, the Exalted and Glorified, commands in His holy verse:
“Be with the truthful ones.” (Tawba: 119)
The truthful are the perfect guides who are Allah’s friends.
The Messenger of Allah -may Allah commend and salute him- describes them as follows:
“The scholars of my community are like the prophets of the Children of Israel.”
It is understood from this honorable hadith that they are Almighty Allah’s special servants. Allah, Exalted and Glorified, has created them for Himself, He has loved and chosen and brought them near Himself.
They too, have loved Allah, the Most Great, and surrendered themselves to His will, taken refuge in Him, and always displayed loyalty and devotion to Him. It is they who have really found Allah’s path. Their conduct is the best. The path, which they follow is the rightest one. Their morals are the purest ones. Why? Because they apply the morals of the Beloved of Allah, Muhammad, -may Allah commend and salute him-, they followed his modes of conduct, and took their color from him.
In just the same way, the Messenger of Allah -peace be upon him- states in his honorable hadith:
“Scholars are the heirs of the Prophets.”
Considering there is no higher degree than prophethood, to inherit that degree is the greatest honor. He is the heir of the Messenger whoever Allah the Exalted has loved, chosen, brought near Himself, has given His trust and to whom He has attached the light of Allah’s Messenger.
His teacher is personally Almighty Allah.
It is declared in the holy verse:
“So be afraid of Allah and Allah teaches you.” (Baqara: 282)
Because their teacher is Allah the Most Great, their knowledge is not taught in a school by means of a scholar. Their knowledge comes directly from Allah, Exalted and Glorified, and Allah’s Messenger -peace be upon him. That is they do not need people.
Allah’s Messenger -may Allah commend and salute him- declares:
“Allah, the Most Supreme, sends a renewer to my nation at the beginning of each century to renew His religion.”
In another honorable hadith:
“At each century there are leaders of my community who are called “Sýddýqun”. Divine compassion and kindness bestowed upon them are so great that you eat and drink by that means. Calamities decreed for humanity are taken away by means of them.”
Such men are a partition between truth and error to show guidance to those who try to bend the religion, and those who go astray.
Their agreement is with Allah. They refrain from seeking all sorts of honor and worldly desires. They only act according to the divine orders, and never afraid of anybody. Therefore, they are not ordinary people but the leaders of the Muslims.
They know the best even though they are not given knowledge about anything from anyone.
Almighty Allah decrees in His holy verse:
“Ask the followers of the Remembrance if you know not.” (Nahl: 43)
The followers of the Remembrance are the friends of Allah, the perfect guides.
He explains the truth without any hesitation from anybody. Why? Because he is responsible to. The essential thing is the divine commandment, not the creation.
Almighty Allah describes them in the holy verse as follows:
“Never afraid of the blame of the blamers.” (Maidaa: 54)
Allah’s Messenger -may Allah commend and salute him- describes them as follows:
“Mature believers are more precious than some angels in the sight of Allah.”
And Allah the Most Supreme orders to be with them:
“Be with the truthful ones.” (Tawba: 119)
Because He has emptied the existence of that servant and He has filled him with His favor. He has informed him of Him and that a creation has nothing; everything is from Him and belongs to Him. Then He has charged him with the duty of guidance.
They solely, lead to Allah.
“And of those whom We have created there is a nation who guides with the Truth and establishes justice therewith.” (Araf: 181)
According to this holy verse, Allah, Exalted and Glorified, instructs that He has sent them especially for guidance. They merely strive for the good approval of Almighty Allah, and endeavor to attach people to Almighty Allah and His Messenger. Their aim is to save humanity from all kinds of separatism and evil, to direct to Almighty Allah and His Messenger. They are those who carry humans to the Truth.
A Muslim must find a perfect Guide and thus be saved from the tricks of Satan and reach the Truth as stated in the holy verse:
“O you who believe! Fear Allah, and be with the truthful ones.” (Tawba: 119)
WHAT IS THE SOUL
The immoderate carnal soul is your companion whose desire is to prevent you from doing good deeds, to encourage you to commit evil, and to claim all benefits. He is your companion in this world, in the grave, in gathering place on Judgment Day, in the Paradise or in the Hell, too.
As the Messenger of Allah -may Allah commend and salute him- has ordered us to seek a physician for diagnosis and treatment of physiological diseases; he has also commanded us to refer to a learned man of religion in order to be free from spiritual illness.
These spiritual diseases are important:
“In their hearts is a disease.” (Baqara: 10)
The terrible diseases mentioned in the holy verse are very dangerous if not healed for they destroy the eternal life of man.
A diseased man can not enjoy food until his disease is treated. Similarly, one whose heart is sick, can not enjoy the taste of acts of worship.
Bad qualities such as bearing grudges, haughtiness, vanity, lust, hypocrisy, greed, jealousy, lying, slander, suspicion... are the diseases of the heart. In order to be a perfect believer, these attributes need to be erased from the heart.
Allah, Exalted and Glorified, commands in His holy verse:
“Draw not near to shameful things whether open or concealed.” (An’am: 151)
To give up sins, committed openly or secretly, is obligatory. As committing evil openly is prohibited, so is the committing of shameful things secretly in the heart such as envy, hypocrisy, and bearing a grudge.
It is decreed in another holy verse that:
“Forsake the outwardness of sin and the inwardness thereof. Lo! Those who garner sin will be awarded that which they have earned.” (An’am: 120)
Indeed he succeeds who purifies his own self:
It is ordered in the holy verse:
“Say (O Muhammad, to mankind): ‘If you love Allah, follow me; Allah will love you.” (Al’ Imran: 31)
According to this holy verse, to be loved by Allah, the Exalted, depends on following strictly the sunna of the Messenger of Allah; that is it is necessary to participate in a tariqat in all circumstances.
To embellish our exterior self, we must follow the shariat of our Master -peace be upon him- and the religious order (tariqat) to make luminous our inner world. The external order is founded by the shariat, the interior one by the tariqat.
The Exalted Tariqat has arrived in our time from our Master, the Noble Messenger -may Allah commend and salute him- with great purity and sincerity and has been the number one factor in the Islamic morals coming into existence. With that secret abundance, the divine rules will survive till the Last Day.
As Allah the Most Great has always provided scholars to teach sciences, He has also ensured men of tariqat in order to teach spiritual knowledge. He is not incapable of making present a Perfect Guide (Supreme Spiritual teacher) everytime.
It is stated in the holy verse:
“And of those whom We created there is a nation who guide with the Truth and establish justice therewith.” (Araf: 181)
In a noble hadith, it is stated as follows:
“Nobody can know the friends of Mine under My roof apart from Me.”
Although they are known externally, their spirituality and lightness are hidden.
Therefore they, sent by the Lord, are responsible for the guidance. No one, except Almighty Allah, knows them. They know Allah, Exalted and Glorified, too. They see that the real Guide is Almighty Allah. That is, people do not recognize them but only the Lord; these Perfect Guides also recognize the Lord.
“O you who believe! Fear Allah, and be with the truthful ones.” (Tawba: 119)
The truthful ones mentioned in the holy verse are the Perfect Guides who reached annihilation (fana) in Allah. They are those who recognize the Lord and see that everything is from Him.
Allah the Most High orders all believers to be with them and get benefit from their conversation. Why?
“Allah chooses for Himself whom He wills.” (Ţűra: 13)
Lo! He commands to be together with the eminently truthful servants chosen by Him, because they guide to the Truth and establish justice therewith. Almighty Allah personally describes them.
It is declared in the holy verse:
“Indeed he succeeds who purifies his own soul.” (Shams: 9)
We connect this holy verse with others in order for you to understand well the order of Allah the Exalted.
If the heart is pure, it leads man to worship and good deeds. A diseased man can not enjoy the taste of foods, a heart, full of worldly desires, can not enjoy the taste of acts of worship. A diseased heart must be purified.
For this, the Reason of Creation, the Master of the Universe, Muhammad -may Allah commend and salute him- orders in his venerable hadith:
“In the remembrance of Allah is the healing of hearts.”
There exists in human beings immoral qualities such as bearing grudges, hypocrisy, lying, haughtiness, vanity, lust, greed, and slander. These are symptoms of a sick heart. Its attribute is also bestial. The sole remedy for this, is the light, the remembrance and thought of Almighty Allah. Through this, bad moral qualities slowly disappear, eventually the heart becomes luminous and that heart, being the center of divine sight, receives a lot of indications.
Sufism has been a great factor in maturing faith in the world of knowledge and truth. It is not only knowledge of speech but a science of applications. It can not be comprehended or made known by abstract methods without practicing, tasting, and feeling it. It is like seeing honey in a jar or licking that jar, whereas one can never reach its reality.
The aim of entering an Exalted Tariqat is to obtain certainty and sincerity about shariat (religious orders), in which way to be believed. This is the real faith. To say, “I am Muslim” is not equal to living Islam, and to live Islam consciously with knowledge is also very different.
Sufism is a school of knowledge and purification. To realize one’s nothingness in this school of knowledge and purification, one has to be purified, and be reduced to ashes with the fire of love. I have entered as a great man, but I have learned I am a insignificant atom. This is the goal of sufism.
THE SOUL AND ITS DEGREES
The sublime spirit was veiled by seven curtains from its original state when united with the dark body. Each of these curtains or veils is called the degrees of soul.
After each curtain has been lifted, light from the spiritual world trickles into the spirit. When seven curtains veil it, light can not penetrate. As the number of veil decreases, the soul gets purified. If all the veils are lifted, it becomes total light. This is the position of Allah’s Messenger -may Allah commend and salute him.
1. NAFS-I AMMARA
It is the soul that drags man by coercion to commit wickedness.
If the human spirit obeys and submits to the bestial spirit’s sensual desires, or consents to give him domination in all circumstances, it is called the “Commanding Soul.”
The heart in the commanding state (nafs-i ammara) plunges into materialism and lust and changes its state. It moves away from the Creator. While before it was a commander, it becomes an employee. If the heart permanently stays at this level, it will have no power to return to the spiritual world. Spirituality is like a mirror. When it is purified from dust and rust, man can see shapes on it clearly and neatly. If it is not polished for a long time, rust completely covers its essence. Then polishing also can not eliminate its blindness. Therefore, it loses its quality of being a mirror.
The Pride of the Universe, our Master Muhammad -may Allah commend and salute him- enjoins in his venerable Hadith:
“Without doubt, there is a tool for polishing the heart; it is Allah’s remembrance.”
If the heart turns towards the spiritual world, abstains from evil deeds and tries to open veils with remembrance and thought, rust and cloudiness are totally erased. It tends to understand the truths of objects, profound meanings and divine manifestations. It ascends to degrees from which it had descended.
Just so, Almighty Allah has enjoined in the noble hadith:
“I did not enter into the earth and the heavens but into the heart of My believer servant.”
“To enter into the heart of believer servant,” means that He is shown to his heart. Otherwise it does not mean Allah enters to the hearts of believers.
In the holy verse:
“Lo! The soul enjoins unto evil, save that whereon my Lord has mercy.” (Joseph: 53)
The attitudes of Nafs-i Ammara (Commanding soul): Ignorance, meanness, greed, grudge, arrogance, contentiousness, lust, avarice, envy, wasting time with useless and vain things, irony, stupidity, forgetfulness, suspicion, gluttony, drinking much, excessive talk, too much merrymaking, idleness, conceit, rejection of believers... and so on.
Nafs-i ammara (commanding soul) is also a divine creation. But due to its committing evil, and its addiction to lust, it is soiled. By being under the domination of the bestial soul and following it as a slave to lust, it has become like an animal. For a human, it has become the greatest enemy.
It is stated in the venerable hadith:
“Your most severe enemy is your soul which is between your two sides.”
Because an external enemy can be a faithful friend if influenced by kindness and benevolence, whereas the soul does not appreciate any favor or blessings and increases its harm.
2. NAFS-I LEVVAMA
If the human spirit regrets the sins and evil acts committed when he was in the state of “ammara” (commanding) and begins condemning himself, this state is called “levvama” (accusing).
For a salik (devotee, follower in the sufi path) who has ascended to this second degree, one of the seven curtains has opened. He fulfills his worshipping duties, tries to abstain from what is prohibited and to perform the divine orders. Even then, he can commit a sin, but immediately after it, regretfully he regrets it and repents.
There are good promises for these people:
“Those who avoid great sins except the small faults; verily your Lord is of vast forgiveness.” (Najm: 53)
The attitudes of Nafs-i Levvama (Accusing Soul): Enjoining, envy, evil thoughts, greed, secret hypocrisy, lust, quarrelsomeness.
Although some qualities of nafs-i ammara are still present, it sees right as right, truth as truth, false as false. His love for shariat and for worshipping acts does not decrease. He is worried about his bad deeds. Whereas, to be completely free from those bad qualities is beyond his present capacity.
At this stage, there exists a disease of secret hypocrisy and pride. He wants people to be known of his good deeds. He is pleased at being praised. Even though he does not like this condition, he can not remove it from his heart.
A man at the accusing soul level is considered as a man of piety. The peak point of this rank is sincerity. Though sincerity exists in his deeds, the devotee is not saved from danger. Even then, in the sight of Allah he has a holy value.
Just so, it is commanded in the holy verse:
“I swear by the accusing soul...” (Qýyama: 2)
3. NAFS-I MULHIMA
If by the increase in worship, remembrance, asceticism and strong struggle against self, one of the veils over the heart is lifted, this degree is called Nafs-i mulhima (Inspiring soul).
It is called “mulhima (inspiring) because at this degree, Almighty Allah directly inspires the human spirit what is wrong for it and what is right for it.
As the spirit is strengthened and makes progress, it wants to dominate the soul. After many struggles, at this degree the soul is improved. Now the control over the body belongs to the spirit.
A human can reach this stage by his own sincerity and endeavor, but for higher degrees he must have the guidance of a Perfect Guide.
The attitudes of Nafs-i mulhima (Inspiring Soul): Knowledge, generosity, contentment, humility, patience, acceptance of apology, good thoughts and tolerance...
At this stage, because the devotee perceives that all creation is under the Omnipotence of the Lord of the Universe, he does not object to anything of a created thing.
The requisite of a devotee at this stage is to obey his Perfect Guide and submit to all his orders. Also, he has to strongly oppose his soul’s selfish desires. For, as it is possible to advance at this stage, there is always the danger of falling down.
Nafs-i mulhima (inspiring soul) is mentioned in the Holy Qur’an as follows:
“And by soul and Him Who perfected it in proportion.
Then He showed him what is wrong for him and what is right for him.
Indeed he succeeds who purifies his ownself.” (Shams: 7-8-9)
The meaning of purify here is to get rid of bad moral qualities such as lust, greed, hypocrisy, envy... The divine declaration “he succeeds who purifies his ownself” points out this essence.
4. NAFS-I MUTMAINNA
(SOUL AT PEACE):
It means a soul, which is free from hypocrisy, suspicion, transgression and fault, and has attained calmness by being saved from sufferings through beseeching the Lord. By the opening of the fourth veil, the spirit ascends to the “mutmainna” degree.
Almighty Allah addresses the soul at peace as follows:
“O! You soul at peace!” (Fajr: 27)
The attitudes of Nafs-i Mutmainna (Soul At Peace): Generosity, resignation, patience, gratitude, mildness, submission, sincerity, consent, worship, a smiling cheerful face, permanent tranquility, full observation, respect to elders, joy of heart, soft words, forgiveness, covering faults...
At this degree, the devotee completely complies with the Qur’an and the Sunnah. Those, who see or listen to one at this stage, are pleased. His words produce pleasure, not disgust. His tongue translates the wisdom of the shariat, mysteries of truth, details of spiritualism. However, he did not study even a single book or demand information from anyone. He has been distinguished by divine inspiration. Because of this he has been plunged into an ocean of character development and modesty. He has been granted awe and put on dignity.
He sometimes meets people and speaks to them about his inspired inner wisdom. He guides his friends according to their aptitude.
Most of the time he worships to attain even higher degrees.
By keeping on with entreating and remembrance at this stage, the love towards Allah’s Messenger -may Allah commend and salute him- takes entirely a different state.
5. NAFS-I RAZIYA
The soul which has remained sincere before all the tests and calamities of Almighty Allah, and has been content with what has happened and what will happen and whose sole aim is to acquire the pleasure of the Lord is called “nafs-i raziya” (contented soul).
The devotee is like a chip of wood in the ocean. As the sea drags it everywhere, he, too, has yielded to divine decree like the chip in the sea. He has surrendered his will to the Lord’s will and abandoned his own wishes.
The Attitudes of Nafs-i Raziya (Contented Soul): Piety, sincerity, love, friendship with the Lord, divine calmness, miraculous deeds, leaving all else besides Allah, submission, contentment, patience in suffering, guidance of people, finest breeding. His supplication is not rejected. Everybody respects him.
Nafs-i raziya and its succeeding nafs-i mardiyya are rewarded in the Holy Qur’an with this divine addressing:
“Come back to your Lord, well-pleased and well-pleasing unto Him.” (Fajr: 28)
6. NAFS-I MARDIYYA
Because Almighty Allah is content with the soul being present at this degree, he is called the “Well-pleased soul.”
The Attitudes of Nafs-i Mardiyya (Well-pleased Soul): To apply the morals of Allah and His Messenger, forgiving faults, covering shame, good opinions, mercy towards everyone, to serve and love people in order to save them from the darkness of ignorance...
But this service and love is only for Allah, it includes pity and mercy. In appearance, he does not leave men, whereas in his inward world he is with the Truth. His heart is free from worldly desires.
He transports the knowledge needed from the spiritual world to this world to be useful for people.
He abstains from excess and remission, and follows a middle course.
7. NAFS-I SAFIYA
At this degree, the soul is totally purified. While he was the worst part of the body, he is now the best that is, while having been a stone, it is now a diamond.
The devotee at this stage is in Al-Haqq’s hand. He knows Al-Haqq and everything is from Al-Haqq. He thinks neither of himself nor of his sustenance. He says, “They belong to my Owner.” Because he knows and sees that Allah, the Exalted, is the Master of the house, he is the guest.
He acknowledges no one else, he asks for his every need from Him. He is pleased with the divine decree in advance.
The Qualities of this Soul:
1. They are the slaves of Al-Haqq. They do know that if the Creator wills, He protects. If He wills He withdraws His protection.
2. They are aware that they always need a drop of divine mercy.
3. They know that they can not perceive something if Allah, the Exalted, has not informed it.
4. The Creator accepts them into the circle of happiness if He wills, and then only they are accepted into it.
In sufism, during “wandering” (special training of a religious order to reach Allah) a mürid (sufi, wanderer, devotee) must follow the following rules in order to reach his target faster.
Repentance is to give up all desires, except Al-Haqq, that cause the appearance of duality in the heart, turn towards the Creator, abandon all sins and to turn to goodness. The tendency to commit sin should be fully erased from the heart.
Repentance is the key of door to “union” (meeting the Lord), the first step of a wayfarer (follower of the road of virtue and piety) on Allah’s path. It means a man, who was lost, again finding the true way.
Although we commit sin and error, Allah, the Exalted, invites us to repentance and gives the good news that He will forgive:
“(O Prophet!) Say: ‘O my slaves who have transgressed against their souls! Do not despair of Allah’s mercy! Surely Allah forgives all sins; for He is the All-forgiving, the Most Merciful.
Turn to your Lord repentant, and submit to Him, before the scourge overtakes you when you shall not be helped.” (Zumar: 53-54)
“And all of you beg Allah to forgive you all, o believers, that you may be successful.” (Nur: 31)
“Allah accepts the repentance of those who do evil in ignorance and then quickly turn to Allah in repentance. Those are they whom Allah pardons, and Allah is ever Knower, Wise.” (Nisa: 17)
Repentance is both external and internal.
A repentant person, who is unable to achieve the inner repentance, can not keep himself away from committing sins again.
For example, even if you cut grass to its root, it grows again. It spreads, too. But if it is taken out from its root and its soil dried, it can not grow.
A person, being able to achieve inner repentance gives up bad deeds and even the tendency in his heart to commit them.
2. ZUHD (RENUNCIATION)
It means to remove the love of the world from the heart and curb the desires of the soul.
“But as for him who feared to stand in front of his Lord and restrained his soul from lust,
Lo! The Garden will be his home.” (Naziat: 40-41)
Almighty Allah has informed us in the holy Qur’an that the life of the world is temporary; on the other hand, the Hereafter is permanent. And He has commanded believers to avoid loving the worldly life, which leads to destruction of the eternal one.
“Let not the life of the world beguile you.” (Fatýr: 5)
“The life of the world is but a play and a pastime.” (Muhammad: 36)
Even if a man lives one hundred years, all the wealth of the world is nothing in comparison with the Hereafter.
Allah, the Most High, conveys in His holy verse:
“But you prefer the life of the world.
Although the Hereafter is better and more lasting.” (Alâ: 16-17)
Our Master, the Pride of the Universe -may Allah commend and salute him- orders in his venerable hadith:
“If the world was worth a wing of a mosquito to Allah -The Almighty-, he would not give a sip of water to any of the misbelievers.”
He gave shelter to His Beloved Messenger in the hollows of stones, caves, but allowed those whom He does not love to live in palaces and villas.
In another venerable Hadith, he states:
“Man, who gets more and more knowledge but does not increase his renunciation of the world, only multiplies the distance between him and Allah.”
One of the Companions of Allah’s Messenger -may Allah be pleased with them- asked Our Master -may Allah commend and salute him:
“O Messenger of Allah! Guide me to such a deed that if I do it, both Allah and his servants will love me.”
Allah’s Messenger -peace be upon him- responded as follows:
“Take out the love of the world from your heart in order to be beloved by Almighty Allah. Do not set your eyes on what others have that people may love you.”
3. TAWAKKUL (COMPLETE TRUST
IN ALLAH AND SELF-SURRENDER
It means to bow to everything which comes from Al-Haqq, to seek help from Allah by entrusting each material or spiritual thing to Him, to rely merely upon Him and not to interfere by one’s own actions.
Tawakkul is also external and internal. External one is a tawakkul after the undertaking of a work. Internal one is to perform an action with Al-Haqq.
As working to earn daily food is a must by Almighty Allah on believers, He has also ordered to put trust in Him:
“And when you are resolved, then put your trust in Allah. Lo! Allah loves those who put their trust (in Him).” (Al’ Imran: 159)
“And put your trust in the Ever Living One Who dies not.” (Furkan: 58)
“And put your trust in the All-Mighty, the Most Merciful.” (Shuara: 217)
Our Master, the Pride of the Universe, Muhammad, -may Allah commend and salute him- states in his venerable hadith:
“The one who wants to be more powerful than everybody must rely on Almighty Allah.”
A sincere believer, who relies only on Almighty Allah by believing everything happening is by His will and by entrusting each of his works to Him, is far removed from all kinds of grief and sorrow. He willingly accepts everything coming from Allah. He knows that each of His decrees is based on wisdom. He does not trust in reason but the Creator of reasons. He does not wish anything. He seeks refuge with Him and expects everything from Him. He never turns to or praises someone other than Him. It is sufficient for him to have been seen and known by Allah, the Most Supreme.
“Is not Allah sufficient for His slave?” (Zumar: 36)
“Say: ‘Sufficient for me is Allah.” (Zumar: 38)
Pious men who ascend to the degree of tawakkul, get their sustenance from the unseen treasure mentioned in the following holy verses:
“And whosoever fears Allah and keeps his duty to Him, He will make a way for him to get out.
And He will provide him from (sources) he never could imagine. And whosoever puts his trust in Allah, then He will suffice him. Verily, Allah will accomplish His purpose. Indeed Allah has set a measure for all things.” (Talaq: 2-3)
4. QANAAT (CONTENTMENT)
It is for a man to be pleased with his present situation and to confirm that this distribution is from Allah, Exalted and Glorified, who is the Giver of Sustenance to the entire Universe. In this way, one acquires spiritual pleasures by leaving those of the self.
Our Master, the Pride of the Universe -may Allah commend and salute him- declares in his venerable hadith:
“The real wealth is the richness of heart, not the abundance of property.”
Allah the Most High clearly declares that providence has been apportioned:
“It is We Who portion out between them their livelihood in this world, and We raised some of them above others in ranks, so that some may employ others in their work. But the Mercy of your Lord is better than the wealth of this world which they amass.” (Zuhruf: 32)
“And in the heaven is your provision, and that which you are promised.” (Zariyat: 22)
Therefore, trusting in this truth, one is preserved from greed and lives with peace of mind. For, even if all men in the world try to prevent the providence apportioned by Allah from reaching its owner, they can never succeed. Even if all men in the world unite, they can not provide sustenance if Allah does not decide it.
It is enjoined in the venerable hadith:
“A believer, who is content with the providence granted by Al-Haqq, enters Paradise.”
The venerable hadith reveals that the contented one is included in Heaven while he is living in the world. Because he is pleased with his Owner, the Lord is pleased with him.
Whoever is not pleased with Al-Haqq’s apportioned providence, it is considered that he does not rely on Almighty Allah and disobeys Him.
The world and its contents are not the goal for a human being but a means to attain salvation in the Hereafter. While making use of these means, they should not be assumed as real goals.
Man should earn his living according to the shariat. He must be content with what Allah has given him in order to not desire prohibited gains.
It is declared in a venerable hadith:
“A Muslim who is given enough sustenance and is contented with what Allah has granted to him is saved.”
5. UZLAT (SECLUSION)
It means to be with Al-Haqq by detaching from people. It is to prefer solitude in order to worship calmly, contemplating the divine secrets.
It is stated in the holy verses:
“They are the party of Allah. Verily, it is the Party of Allah that will be the successful.” (Mujadilah: 22)
“Allah is sufficient as a Friend, and Allah is sufficient as a Helper.” (Nisa: 45)
The members of Allah’s party live while remembering Allah, die while remembering Allah and attain Allah while remembering Allah.
“Do you want to be my friend?” asked a man to Sahl-i Tusteri -may Allah sanctify his secret- (one of the Friends of Allah). He responded:
“When one of you dies, the soul friend till the judgment day is Almighty Allah, then from now try to be a friend of Him.”
Always Him, always His approval...
When it was asked, “there is no seclusion and loud remembrance (cahrî-dhikr) on your path, what is the essence of your path?” His Excellency, Shah-ý Nakshibend -may Allah sanctify his secret- (one of the Masters of our path) answered:
“It is to be apparently with men, to be innerly with Al-Haqq.”
Because, it is not lawful for a heart to think something other than Allah. It is created for Allah, and it is the center of divine light.
Patience in seclusion is only possible by disconnecting with the world and its contents of which men are fond. Hands should deal with the gain of business, while the heart is occupied with the Lover.
The most important virtue is to improve the soul.
Almighty Allah orders in His Holy verse:
“O you who believe! Take care of your ownselves. If you follow the right guidance and enjoin what is right and forbid that is wrong no hurt can come to you from those who are in error.” (Maida: 105)
It means to turn towards Al-Haqq by giving up the love and desire for things other than Allah.
“Turn unto your Lord repentant, and surrender unto Him.” (Zumar: 54)
Then, there does not exist any intention, desire or love other than Al-Haqq. The heart loved by Allah does not separate from the Beloved (Allah) even for a moment.
Almighty Allah enjoins:
“Whosoever surrenders his purpose to Allah while doing good, he verily has grasped the firm hand-hold.” (Loqman: 22)
“So remember the name of your Lord and devote yourself with a complete devotion.” (Muzzammil: 8)
“Follow the path of him who turns to Me.” (Loqman: 15)
One must remove worldly desires from his heart to devote himself to Al-Haqq. Two loves can not exist within one heart. If a heart is full of worldly desires, the love of Allah is driven out. If there is Allah’s love in the heart, all else besides Allah is not present in it.
As in the Holy verse:
“Allah has not assigned unto any man two hearts within his body.” (Azhab: 4)
If there is money, it should be in a cash-box, objects in a home, property in a shop. The heart should devote itself to the Lord and be occupied with Him.
7. SABR (PATIENCE)
Patience means to oppose the desires and pleasures of the soul (self) with struggle; to show patience and determination to fulfill Allah’s will and orders.
The salik (wayfarer, devotee) has to abstain from whatever his soul likes and is habituated to; also from things which Almighty Allah has forbidden. He must willingly perform whatever He has ordered. Because, if man does not display patience and resolution not to commit the prohibited, he can not reach the degree of piety. Piety exists through patience.
Allah, Exalted and Glorified, praises His patient servants in the Holy Qur’an:
“Such as persevere in seeking their Lord’s Countenance.” (Ra’d: 22)
“And Allah loves the patient.” (Al’ Imran: 146)
“Verily the steadfast will be paid their wages without stint.” (Zumar: 10)
Our Master, the Pride of the Universe, Muhammad, -may Allah commend and salute him- declares in his venerable hadith:
“A Muslim’s affairs are amazing. Because all his affairs are good for him. This virtue only belongs to the believer. Therefore, if he is happy, he is grateful. This is good for him. If he receives affliction he is patient. This is also good for him.”
Almighty Allah tests His servants through patience according to their faith. He exposes a believer to calamities. As faith matures, tests also increase.
He commands in His holy verse:
“Do men imagine that they will be at ease alone because they say, ‘We believe’, and will not be tested.” (Ankabut: 2)
Sincerity and loyalty are proven when tested. Everybody is fine in easy times, but in tests whatever one has in his self, appears.
Tests are passed by patience. Afflictions are reduced by means of patience. Patience is the key of all goodness. It is one of the treasures of Heaven. A believer progresses and acquires high degrees by means of his patience. By patience one attains the degree of approval, the heart is also purified.
Abdulkadir Geylani -may Allah sanctify his secret- stated that:
“Patience is to meet affliction with modesty. That is, it means not to be shaken either apparently or inwardly.”
8. DHIKR (THE REMEMBRANCE
Dhikr means to take the love of the world out of the heart, and put Allah’s remembrance into it and not to be unaware of Him even for a moment.
Dhikr is an order of our religion, the proof of faith, the essence of worship, the light of reason, the luster of heart, the life of the spirit, a polish of our heart and a remedy for all pain.
“Verily the remembrance of Allah is more great.” (Ankabut: 45)
“Remember the Name of Allah much, so that you may be successful.” (Anfal: 45)
The name of a loved thing is always uttered by man. Allah’s remembrance encourages the love for Allah and gives an eternal taste. By Allah’s praise, the hearts are purified and calmed, find peace.
“Who have believed and whose hearts have rest in the remembrance of Allah. Verily in the remembrance of Allah do hearts find rest.” (Ra’d: 28)
Allah, Exalted and Glorified, by encouraging believers to remember Allah, has praised those who perform this worship:
“Men whom neither merchandise nor sale beguiles from remembrance of Allah.” (Nur: 37)
“O you who believe! Let not your property or your children divert you from the remembrance of Allah.” (Munafýkun: 9)
Even though each prayer has a precise condition, dhikr has no such requirement. It is permitted to remember Allah while standing and sitting and while lying down. Dhikr can be performed without ablution, as well.
It is commanded in the holy verse:
“When you have finished the prayer, remember Allah standing, sitting down, and lying down on your sides.” (Nisa: 103)
Our Master, the Pride of the Universe -may Allah commend and salute him- states:
“Do you want me to tell you the most blessed deed of yours which is the purest in the presence of Allah; more blessed than donating gold and silver, more blessed than killing your disbelieving enemies and getting beheaded as a martyr by them?
‘Yes, o Prophet of Allah.”
‘It is to remember Allah.”
In another venerable hadith, it is declared as follows:
“The most virtuous servant in the sight of Allah on the Doomsday, is the one who remembered Allah much in the world.”
9. MURÂKABA (CONTEMPLATION)
To give up all desires and wishes, conditions and restrictions, to think Al-Haqq by being annihilated in Al-Haqq, to be with Al-Haqq in the divine sight... In brief, by imagining the One being contemplated to be with Him...
Allah, Exalted and Glorified, commands in His holy verses:
“Truly, nothing is hidden from Allah, in the earth or in the heavens.” (Al’ Imran: 5)
“Surely, Allah is Ever an All-Watcher over you.” (Nisa: 1)
It is stated in the venerable hadith:
“Benevolence (Perfection) is to worship Allah as if you see Him and if you can not achieve this state of devotion then you must consider that He is looking at you.”
The truth of the Lord’s being present everywhere is revealed to those who attain this degree, he is at the observation stage. The lights of Divine Lordship, the secrets of Oneness are made clear.
Man has three periods of time. One has passed. The other one is the future time. And it is unknown whether it will come or not and how it will arrive. The third one, on the other hand, is the present time.
The duty of a servant is to do his best during the present time. If he reaches the succeeding hour, he again should do his best.
He should consider the present time as the end of his life and get prepared according to this. If he behaves like this, he does not fear death.
Our Master, the Pride of the Universe -may Allah commend and salute him- declares:
“The wise man is the one who keeps on account of himself and strives for the life after death.”
10. RIZA (ACCEPTANCE)
It means to be pleased with and to accept all the decrees of Almighty Allah. This is the last stage. The one reaching this degree meets Allah.
The degree of a servant in the presence of Allah is directly related to his loyalty towards Him.
Good Pleasure is the most virtuous deed and the best of morals.
It is ordered in the holy verse:
“But the greatest bliss is the Good Pleasure of Allah.” (Tawba: 72)
Whoever is pleased with the decree of Allah instead of his own reason and wish, He grants him His good pleasure as a reward.
“Is the reward of goodness aught save goodness?” (Rahman: 60)
The greatest goodness is the Creator’s acceptance for his slave.
He bestows those servants with the manifestation of the following holy verse:
“Allah will be well pleased with them, and they with Him. They are the party of Allah.” (Mujadila: 22)
THE ESSENTIAL OF SUFISM
Allah, Exalted and Glorified, commands in His holy verse:
“And I created not the jinns and men except they should worship Me.” (Zariyat: 56)
The main reason of creation is to search for and find the Creator. The secret of the holy verse is this. If you do not turn your face to Him, what can you expect to find?
He is Allah who has created human beings from a dirty drop of fluid.
For a man to know, find and truly worship His Creator, he must descend to his initial essence, NUTFAH (seminal fluid - semen drop), by erasing his existence. After descending to this point, Almighty Allah grants the realization of the following holy verse to that servant by supporting him with the “holy spirit.”
“As for such, He has written faith upon their hearts and has strengthened them with a Spirit from Him.” (Mujadala: 22)
In order to grasp the mystery of the venerable hadith “Whoever knows his soul, knows his Lord;” it is necessary to be reduced to nutfah (semen drop). When he perceives with his own eyes at that point that he is only a valueless drop of fluid “nutfah”, the divine greatness begins to manifest. The essence and reality of sufism is this.
In reality, until becoming “nutfah”, man has progressed much and traversed many stages. Whereas real progress starts after being reduced to “nutfah” and it is the main development.
Shariat represents the divine orders of Allah, which regulate external order. To meet Almighty Allah depends on the fulfillment of these decrees.
Tariqat is the traveling of the worship path to approach Allah. With the light and fire of the remembrance of Allah, love and calmness are provided and faith matures.
If faith does not mature, it is because man tries to evaluate Almighty Allah’s orders with his reasoning capacity. When he evaluates them with his reason he fails. The man with mature faith causes his reason to conform to the orders, he never evaluates with reason. Truth is understood only by spiritual pleasure. The ones who are away from being a wayfarer and from having the spiritual pleasure can not know and grasp truth; they merely know its name.
Marifa, on the other hand, is the state occurring after tariqat.
By these states the core of truth is reached. Nutfah (semen) means the essence of creation. Almighty Allah has created man from nutfah (semen) and constituted the body on it. Is there a relation between nutfah and the body? No, there is not. Who has constituted the body? Almighty Allah... It is again Almighty Allah who has created semen, then has given it the spirit and caused it to act by means of that spirit... After the human being has been lowered this state, real progress begins. THE DIVINE SECRET is this.
It is enough for man to think about the wisdom of being created from semen. It is really shown as an ordinary, simple, dirty thing... Why has He created us from it? In order for us to be aware of our essence.
“Does not man see that we have created him from Nutfah (semen).” (Ya-sin: 77)
Then, He has caused it to go through different stages such as blood, bone, flesh... After He has granted him spirit. This is the first creation.
It is stated in the Holy Qur’an:
“Verily, We created man of the best stature.” (Tin: 4)
How wonderful that He has created man and embellished him with endless blessings. Whatever exists in the universe, exists in man.
Our master, His Excellency, Ali -may Allah be pleased with him- expresses this as follows:
“Your remedy is in you, you do not know
Your pain is also in you, you do not see
You suppose yourself of tiny volume
However all the worlds are folded up in you (again you do not know).”
Again He has folded the worlds in man. There is no atom in man belonging to him. All the blessings belong to Him.
Humans have so many blessings, which are impossible to count. In the brain alone there are billions of cells. He has given us our mind, eyes-ears, hands-feet. If you want to buy an eye, could you succeed? While He has granted those blessings, He did not ask any return. Only He has wanted us to know and worship Him. He has also bestowed upon us the best sustenance. Is there any connection between man and those blessings? No, there is not. How is that? It depends on what Almighty Allah folds up in that valueless drop of fluid.
Our Master, the Pride of the Universe -may Allah commend and salute him- declares this issue as follows:
“It takes forty days for each of you to be completed from a semen drop of semen in his mother’s womb. After that, in an additional equal period of time it becomes a coagulum. Then, again in 40 days, it transforms into a lump of flesh.
Later on, Allah sends an angel and;
1. The deeds he will do in his future lifetime
2. His sustenance provided by Allah
3. His being happy or unhappy, are written down by the angel upon Allah’s command. After that, spirit is breathed on the embryo.”
“So the judgment is only with Allah.” (Mümin: 12)
No one has the right of commanding but Allah. Before granting the spirit, these are written. When Almighty Allah commands the angels to write the deeds on the embryo, all his future acts are recorded in his book of life and given to him. Then the baby is born.
While He has been decking him out, He has put each of his organs in their proper places; even a single hair does not belong to us. Whereas man says, “It is mine” and lays claim to everything.
If it is willed for a man to pass second tour by completing his first tour with outward knowledge, Almighty Allah causes him to meet a guide. By progressing slowly in the hands of the Perfect Guide, spirit and soul begin separating from each other and soul becomes smaller. Worldly desires fall away one by one. This education lasts so much that if Allah, the Sublime, causes all existences to fall away, man descends to his first creation, “nutfah” (semen). Imagine that all these worldly desires will fall away and the heart will be purified.
The first and second states of semen are the same. Man descending to nutfah, knows very well that he is consisted of nutfah and has no right of command. He has value if his Owner grants him value. He causes him to progress or to stop according to His will. Essentially apart from His judgment, no atom possesses the right of command. The main obstacle to see this truth, is the existence (worldly desires) of the human being. Someone who exists can not see, know and find the Existent.
After descending to semen, beside the Existent, the sublime creatures are also seen. Our Master, the Messenger of Allah -may Allah commend and salute him- and other prophets are seen at that time.
Until that time, man evaluates the Messenger of Allah -peace be upon him- according to his opinion; but after descending to nutfah, he begins to see that all the worlds have been created of Muhammad’s -peace be upon him- light. Almighty Allah has chosen him, He has adorned him in a way beyond the capacity of reason.
Almighty Allah’s existence is manifest. It is known He exists by His signs. Whereas the existence of the Beloved’s -peace be upon him- is not evident. Few men know that Allah, the Exalted, created the worlds with the light of Allah’s Messenger. If Allah’s Messenger -peace be upon him- did not exist, no creation would exist.
In a noble hadith:
“If I had not created you, I would have not created the worlds.”
The favor bestowed upon the Messenger of Allah -peace be upon him- is beyond man’s reason. He willed so and has created him like that.
Muhammad’s light can not be seen and his love can not be attained without descending to nutfah. He is the reason for creation. When one descends to nutfah, he sees the One who annihilates him and who causes him to exist from nothing. There, he sees the light of His Beloved -may Allah commend and salute him- and acquires his love. When he descends to this point, he sees that there is nothing except the light. In this way, the real Creator appears.
Allah, the Majestic, orders in His holy verse:
“Verily, We have honored the Children of Adam.” (Isra: 70)
Whoever Almighty Allah has supported and ornamented with His light and kindness, it is he who is honorable.
Allah is such that I can not be grateful enough for His single blessing in my life. I can not account for His blessings, unless He forgives without account.
The One Who exists is Almighty Allah. You are incapable; you can not know and understand Allah, the Sublime. Can an atom of dust evaluate you? You are not even an atom of dust, because He has also created you.
Almighty Allah can not be worshipped without understanding Him. In order to know Him, it is necessary to travel in the path of Allah. Then the Divine Greatness appears. Eyes have three stages: open eyes, squint eyes, blind eyes. One worships by seeing Allah, the Exalted. The other worships with his existence (worldly desires). The last one sees nothing.
Even after descending to nutfah, Satan and soul attack man to lay claim to existence. These two enemies never give up forcing believer to commit sin. It is impossible to be saved except by seeking refuge with Allah. If one entreats “My Allah! I seek refuge with You from these enemies,” if Almighty Allah also protects him by His Mercy from their attacks, only then he can be saved. It is impossible to say, “I am saved.”
Our Master, the Pride of the Universe -may Allah commend and salute him- declares:
“None of you can be saved by his own deeds and worship.
His companions asked:
“This statement includes you also?”
“Yes, I can not, unless Almighty Allah covers me with his blessings and grace.”
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