Friday, March 18, 2011

Despair Not, Oh Traveller!

وَقُلْ رَبِّ اغْفِرْ وَارْحَمْ وَأَنْتَ خَيْرُ الرَّاحِمِينَ

And say, "Oh Lord, forgive me and have mercy, for you are the best of the merciful ones. (Suratul Muminoon, aayah 118)


The traveller stands in despair
Tears flowing from his eyes
He wishes to be cleansed once and for all
Sweat and grime decorate his clothes
Dust and dirt is the crown on his head
Such is the state of his true self
Encrusted with sins, tainted with disobedience
How is it possible to rid himself of this filth?
How he wishes to plunge into the ocean before him
The beautiful sparkling water of forgiveness
Crystal clear and so inviting
Just one step he has to take yet he goes no further
“I am so dirty” is his claim
“If I step inside the ocean will become dirty
"If I wash myself, this beautiful water will lessen"
The ocean glimmers, so serene and yet poweful
“Oh you fool!” is the call from the waters
“Do you think cleansing your sins will leave me tainted?
“Do you think you think my waters will decrease even a drop?
“Oh you fool!
“Millions have I cleansed before you
“Yet I remain as I am
“Pristine and complete
“Nothing is there that can tarnish my water
“So dive deep within me
“And be submerged as long as you will
“And herein you will find that which you yearn for
“A purified soul to show before your Master”


This was inspired from something Moulana Yunus Patel Damat Barakatuhum mentioned in last nights Zikr Majlis.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Thorn in a Rose Garden

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا اتَّقُوا اللَّهَ وَكُونُوا مَعَ الصَّادِقِينَ

Oh you who Believe! Fear Allah and be with those who are the truthful ones.

Once upon a time there was a thorn that lived in a garden filled with roses, where it enjoyed the company and beautiful scent of the rose. However this thorn was quite aggrieved when it saw the gardener come in everyday and sweet away all of the fallen leaves and thorns.

The thorn then took matters up with Allah. It mentioned about how it was so small and so insignificant compared to the rose, and how it feared that it too would be swept out of the garden one day, thereby being deprived of the company of the beautifully scented rose.

So, this thorn was then advised that it should keep itself attached to the rose. In this way, not only would it enjoy being in its company, but its price would be the same as well, and no matter where the rose went, it would go along, thereby never leaving the rose's company.

In such a way we laymen are the thorns, and the Friends of Allah are the roses. Insha Allah if we thorns keep ourselves attached to the roses, then Allah Ta'aala will allow us to benefit from these roses and also take us to where the roses go, in this world and the next.

The story about the thorn and rose is actually from the Mathnawi of Shaykh Jalaluddin Rumi Rahmatullahi 'Alayhi. I simply retold it in the words that I read from ('Aashiq-e-Sawdiq Part 2 by Moulana Yunus Patel saheb) and heard from (in a talk by Moulana Abdul-Hameed, Principal of Azadville Madrassah).

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The Story of the Grammarian and the Sailor

In the Mathnavi, Moulana Rumi (R.A.) tells the story of a grammarian. A certain man noted for his knowledge of grammar once boarded a boat for a voyage. The captain of the boat asked him: "Sir, in which subject are you an expert?" He replied: "I am an expert in the knowledge of grammar. It is a great pity that you have spent your whole life in learning how to sail a boat but did not learn anything about grammar".

At this reply, the boats man remained silent. It so happened that according to the decree of Allah, the boat was caught up in a storm in the middle of the ocean. The captain told the grammarian: "Sir, make use of your knowledge of grammer and save yourself from drowning. The boat is in danger of sinking".

The grammarian remained silent. Of what use was grammar in such a situation? The sailor also said: "This is not a time for grammar. It is time to be a swimmer. There is at this time no use of expert knowledge of grammar. It is time to swim your way out of trouble.

"The water of the ocean carries a corpse on its head While living ones it drowns"

In other words, by annihilating your 'self' the road to Allah is discovered. Those who act proudly and arrogantly become destroyed.

Hence in the path of Allah, self-annihilation is most useful. It is of no great benefit to become involved with arguments and debates. Sometimes these debates create arrogance, which prevents one from building a close contact with the saintly ones. May Allah protect us against such deprivation and grant us perfect annihilation of the self, Ameen!

I once asked my Sheikh and Murshid: "What is annihilation?" He replied: "The meaning of the term' destruction of the self', and to 'annihilate your self' and to become 'annihilated to Allah' means that a person will discard all his pleasures and desires which are against the commands of Allah. That is what is called I annihilation of the self'. When a person initially takes the first steps on the path of sulook, this annihilation is accomplished through strenuous spiritual exercises and great difficulty. But in the end, the pleasure of Allah and the acquisition thereof becomes like second nature to a person - much more easy to attain ".

Taken from Here

Monday, March 7, 2011

La Taqnatu

Just a few verses to do with the subject of my last blog entry...

Baarish-e-Rahmaton ki barasnai lagi
Dil ki murjhaai kaliyaan meheknai lagi
Laghzishain wajd mastana karnai lagi
Sun liya jab tera Hukm 'La Taqnatu'.

"The rains of mercy began to fall
The heart's wilted petals began to to emit perfume
The sins began to dance in wajd
When they heard Your order of "'La Taqnatu* '"

* "La Taqnatu" refers to the aayat 53 or Surataz Zumar, in which Allah Ta'aala tells us not to despair, for He forgives all sins.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

The Lifelong Battle

Ye kushti to hai umr bhar ki
Kabhi tu daba lai, kabhi wo daba lai...
Jo naa kaam hota rahe umr bhar bhi
Bahar haal koshish to aashiq na chore
Yeh rishta muhabbat ka qayim hi rakhe
Jo so baar toote toh so baar jore

"This battle is a lifelong one
At time you will overpower, at times it will overpower
Oh you who keeps failing, the lover must continue making effort
This relationship of love should remain firm
If it breaks 100 times, it is put back together 100 times"

One of my good friends mentioned these verses of Khwaja Majzoob Rahmatullahi ‘Alayhi today, and I also remembered hearing them like a week ago in a Majlis of Moulana Yunus Patel sahib.

They really touch the heart, these verse, they give hope. Tests will come, temptations will visit us. This is normal, and it’s normal that the nafs will wage battle against us so that we may succumb to its wishes. And, at times because of a moment of weakness, we may succumb to the wishes of the nafs.

But the ‘aashiq knows that because of a mistake, it does not mean that we give up hope. The relationship we have with Allah Ta’aala is that we are His lowly slaves and He is our Master. But, what a Master He is, so Merciful, so Loving. If we make a mistake one time, two time, three times, ten times... eventually a person will become tired and no longer accept our apology. But Allah Ta’aala... ah... how to describe the One who brought us into existence. There are no words to bring that bring can do justice in describing His Mercy, His Love, His Forgiveness.

Allah Ta’aala mentions in the Qur’aan,

قُلْ يَا عِبَادِيَ الَّذِينَ أَسْرَفُوا عَلَىٰ أَنْفُسِهِمْ لَا تَقْنَطُوا مِنْ رَحْمَةِ اللَّهِ إِنَّ اللَّهَ يَغْفِرُ الذُّنُوبَ جَمِيعًا إِنَّهُ هُوَ الْغَفُورُ الرَّحِيمُ

“Say ‘Oh My servants who have transgressed against their souls, do not despair of the mercy of Allah, verily Allah forgives all sins, and He is the Most Forgiving, the Most Merciful.”

Allah Himself tells us the above, He gives us this glad tiding, that no matter how many sins we may have committed, if we make sincere tawbah before him, then surely He will forgive us.

So we should not despair and become depressed, rather realize that the time we have to despair and grieve in is the time given to us by Allah to repent, to seek amnesty, to once again have a clean slate. Let us not waste the precious time given to us by Allah Subhanahu wa Ta’aala. Every moment He allows to live us is a gift to change our ways. Every moment in time is a present in which we may strengthen that bound we have with the Supreme Maker.

Agar che pur khataa hai par kahaan jaye tera banda?
Tere dar par tera banda ba ummeed-e-karam aaya.

"Even though he is amassed with sins, where else can Your slave go?
To Your house Your slave has come with hopes of Grace"

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Rabbana, Ya Rabbana!

Here is a beautiful Na'at, which had different version. I'll transliterate in Urdu the one I am familiar with and try to translate it in English, Insha Allah.

Rabbana, ya Rabbana, Rabbana, ya Rabbana!

Woh mahboob-e-Khuda yaaro, rahmat ka daryaa yaro!
Mujh naacheez se kya hogi uski madah-o-thana yaro!

He is the beloved of the Lord oh friends, a river of mercy, oh friends!
How can a humble one like me be able to praise him, oh friends!

Uska hai maddah Khuda, mein aur aap hai kya yaro?
Chaand kai do tukray karna uski aik ada yaro!

The Lord Himself has praised him, who are you and I, oh friends?
Splitting the moon in two is a mere gesture for him, oh friends!

Khaak peh uske qadmon ki kardo jaan fidaa yaro!
Dil mein basa hai pyar uska aur lab peh hai Salli 'Alaa yaro!

I would sacrifice my life for the dust of his feet, oh friends!
In my heart is his love, and upon my lips is Salli 'Alaa, oh friends!

Woh sooraj mein zarrah hoon, yoon hai ta'alluq sa yaro!
Mein uska nacheez ghulam, woh hair mera Aaqa yaro!

Before that sun I am a mere atom, such is our relationship, oh friends!
I am his humble slave and he is my master, oh friends!

Mein hoon faqeer uske dar ka, fakhr ye kam hai kya yaro?
Mein shahoon se kya maangoon, shah bhi hai uske gadaa yaro!

I am a beggar at his door, is this not sufficient to be proud of, oh friends? 
What should I ask from kings, even kings are his slaves, oh friends!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

As Long as He is Pleased

In life there are so many things we have to do. Everyday there are responsibilities we must uptake, rights we must fulfil, be they the rights of people, or the rights of the Almighty, Allah Subhanahu wa Ta'aala.

But we must remember one thing, when it comes to whom we please, first and foremost is always Allah. We must ponder over our intentions and then see, "Is my Allah pleased with me at this moment? If I go through with this, will my Allah be happy with me?"

If the answer is yes, then care not about what anyone else thinks, because your fate does not lie in their hands, it lies in the hands of Rahmaanur Raheem. See for yourself, when you try to please people without keeping Allah in mind, then you will never succeed in making everyone happy. No one will be satisfied with you always; there will always be something about you they want to tweak to make you suit them.

But when Allah is always in your mind, then you will automatically do those things that are right, whether it's fulfilling Allah's rights (ie the faraaidh, wajibaat etc), or whether it's the rights of the people around us. Fulfilling the rights of others does not mean we do what they want us to do. It means that we serve and treat them as Allah the Supreme ordered us to. 

And this way at least we will have a clear conscious, that "Alhamdu Lillah, I have fulfilled my duty to the best of my ability for the pleasure of Allah Tabaaraka wa Ta'aala; now I leave the results in His hands."