Jawahir Rasaail Dr Zachary

July 10, 2017 | Author: Isma'eel Bakare | Category: Sufism, Prophets And Messengers In Islam, Tawhid, Muhammad, Monotheism
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LETTERS 1 & 2 By: Shaykh Ibrahim Niasse


Translated by: Dr. Zachary Wright via: http://www.medinainternational.net/Kitab_Jawahir_Al_Rasa_il___Essential_Letters_.html The Kitab Jawahir al-Rasa'il al-hawi ba'd 'ulum wasilat al-wasa’il -- "The Book of Essential Letters comprising some of the knowledge of the channel of channels" -- is a rare collection of Shaykh Ibrahim Niasse's communication with Muslims around the African continent from 1929 to the 1960s. The work contains letters, transcribed speeches, sermons (khutbas), legal rulings (fatwas), and supplications (du'as). The format of the text lends itself to the exposition of complex Islamic and Sufi topics in an understandable manner for the ordinary Muslim. Shaykh Ibrahim is clearly demonstrating throughout the work the continued vitality and adaptibility of the Islamic tradition in the modern age, commenting on a wide array of spiritual and social issues; from forms of governance, Islamic and African consciousness, secular education, family relations, to perfecting Muslim ethics and spirituality in today's complicated world. The work also stands on its own as a scholarly treatise, combining commentary on Qur'an and Hadith with reference to some of the classical texts of Prophetic biography (sira), theology (aqida), jurisprudence (fiqh), poetry (qasida, madh) and Sufism (tasawwuf). -------------------------------------------------------------------------------CONSCIOUSNESS OF GOD (TAQWA) In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful. And God’s blessing on our master Muhammad, and peace as well upon his family and companions. Praise be to God, who made the following of His saints (awliya) a source of happiness and righteousness; (who made) the love and exaltation of them, and the obedience to their commands, a source of profit and success. And peace upon the master of the two worlds, who said, “Islam was built on five pillars: witnessing (there is no god but God and that Muhammad is His Messenger), the five daily prayers, fasting, alms-giving and the pilgrimage for those who are able.” And may God be pleased with the Prophet’s absolute inheritor (khalifatihi ‘ala al-itlaq: Shaykh Ahmad Tijani), who said, “If you hear

something from me, weigh it on the scale of the Sacred Law (Sharia). If it agrees, take it; if it differs, leave it.” Peace be to you all and the mercy and blessing of God, (a greeting) carrying the support of our master [Shaykh Ahmad] Tijani. After this, we ask God that He grant righteousness to our states (of being) and your states, and to our livelihood and yours. May He provide us with the sweetness of faith, and truthfulness in servant-hood in regards to standing up for the rights belonging to God. And may He write our names and yours in the register of his beloved and chosen ones. And may He allow us to turn to Him, for to Him is the turning of the righteous. I am advising you and myself with what Allah has advised you and the communities before you: and that is the awe (taqwa) of God secretly and openly. Taqwa means to obey the command (of God) and avoid His prohibition. I emphasize among these commandments the observance of the five daily prayers; in congregation at the proper time, while guarding your cleanliness (tahira) by washing with water. The ultimate arrogance is for one to affiliate himself with God and our Shaykh Tijani while being heedless of his ritual prayer or its (proper conditions of) purity; (instead) making ablution with sand (falsely) claiming to be excused (from ablution with water). Such a valid excuse does not remain (for more than one prayer), nor can it be generalized to a whole group (qabila). “Surely we are from God and to Him we are returning!” “So repent to your Creator, and kill yourselves (nafs), that is better for you with your Creator.” … There is escape from renewing your repentance (tawba) to Allah, at all times and in every position (maqam). You must be observant of God at all times and with every breath, acting on the saying of the Prophet (SAW): “Hold yourselves to account before you are brought to account.” Strive for truthfulness in the affairs of your Lord and Master in such a manner that not one of you is found where He has prohibited, nor absent from where He has commanded you to be. Keep yourself and your close relations away from anything to do with what is unlawful (haram). Indeed, the unlawful things neighbor the Fire. Beware of heedlessness, for it is the source of all mistakes, lust and ugly behavior (adab). The Exalted and Ultimate Truth says, “For him to whom I have unveiled My names, I obligate him with exemplary conduct (adab), and for him to whom I have unveiled the perfection of my Essence (dhat), I obligate him with destruction (‘atab)." So be careful to observe the proper conduct of seeking (suluk) God. As has been said in verse: “An intoxicated mystic (majdhub) has become rebellious if he has failed to sober up If he has not corrected himself with obedience, he has abandoned guidance And who would obtain what is desired, must strive to be thankful If not, the severance of his soul (ruh) [from the Divine presence] is (only) the beginning of his ruin.” You must work for (the countenance) of God by rejecting everything apart from Him. Encourage each other in patience. Love each other, guide each other, visit each other, spend freely on each other, and sit with each other; (all this) in (the presence of) God, for (the sake of) God, and by (the help of) God. Cooperate with one another in righteousness (birr) and piety (taqwa), and remember God often so that

you may prosper. Save yourselves and your families from the Fire. The Prophet (SAW) has said, “This (saving) is to say, ‘O my family, (make) your prayers, your prayers! O my family, (remember) your fasting, your fasting! O my family, (guard) your purity! O my family, (provide for) the indigent among you! As the Most High has said, “Enjoin on your family the ritual prayer, and to seek patience (in its performance). We do not ask from you provision, rather it is We who provide for you, and the good end belongs to those who are pious (al-‘aqaba li al-taqwa).” (Qur’an, 20: 132) … -------------------------------------------------------------------------------SPIRITUAL ILLUMINATION (FATH) There is nothing for the aspirant to do except guard the known religious obligations … He should want nothing by his devotions except the countenance of God, the Bountiful. (He should desire) neither this world nor the next, and no rank among the ranks, for he witnesses the favor (as is). He should have the best of thoughts (of God), and he will overflow with grace (yafud). If he persists in this, without any other goal, he will be praising God continuously. The ugliness in the aspirant – the one calumnious in worship, the great destitute, the depravity among depravities of the ego – is that God’s creation should worship Him and remember Him and expect, by reason of this [worship], the illumination (fath); whether today or tomorrow, or in a week or month, or in a year. Indeed! No one deserves anything from God, but He deserves worship for His sake alone (bidhatihi). So who finds the illumination to be slow (in coming), he must annihilate himself in the presence of God. He should know that if he persisted in this work for the extent of the world’s entire lifespan, and he attained illumination for a single moment, he would realize in this moment all what He would teach him of the (Divine) presence, equal to that and more. And if He should not grant him illumination at all, it is sufficient for him to work for God until he dies. There is nothing for the aspirant except praising God in every state. -------------------------------------------------------------------------------SCHOLARLY DISAGREEMENT (IKHTILAF) The disagreement (ikhtilaf) of the scholars is a mercy. What is prohibited and blameworthy is division (tafarruqa), not disagreement. An individual (scholar) can have one understanding, and another can have a (different) understanding, so they will disagree. But such is not blameworthy. Rather, what is blameworthy causes a (negative) influence in the hearts (of people). If two understandings should differ, the person (whose opinion differs) should not be censured, since it is not (simply a question of) one person being right and the other wrong. Indeed, perhaps consensus (between scholars) is best when it does not prevent (harmless) difference (in opinion), (differences which) have no affect (on the heart). Disagreement befell the companions (of the Prophet). If you were to examine closely the origins of disagreement (among the scholars) you would find (only) slight differences therein. But when Satan and

the ego-self get involved, slight disagreements become severe, and division is created between men. Such are the enemies of religion, and (because of them), you find a community divided over a slight disagreement, because these enemies of religion have created discord between people. The different groups of Islam – the Khawarij and the Shi’a and the Ahl al-Sunna wal-Juma’at – if you look closely at the basis of disagreement between them you will find them slight. The same is true for the Sufi orders. But that does not prevent them from hating each other, envying each other and contending with each other … --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

THE ONENESS OF GOD (TAWHID) If the servant does not extinguish himself in Allah’s Essence, he has not completed his faith. If the veil should remain with you here, (beware) of a type of punishment (inevitably) overtaking the servant. As the Most High has said “Nay, on that Day they will be veiled from their Lord, then they will indeed enter the Hellfire” (Qur'an, 83:15-16). So whenever should arrive the veil, there arrives the punishment. But if the servant continues with the remembrance (dhikr) of Allah, he attains extinction (fana’). And extinction is of three types: extinction in the Works (of Allah), extinction in the Attributes, and extinction in the Essence. Many of the believers reach the stage of extinction in the Works. Whoever knows that there is no agent in the existence except Allah (TA), that is the completion of (the servant’s) extinction in the works; for he knows that there is no agent except Allah (TA), and to this station many of the believers (are able to) arrive. I say to the students in my grammar lesson: “The grammarians say, ‘The active participle in reality is Allah, and metaphorically and technically (speaking), who engenders the action is he who is linked to a performed action, and all of this is Allah, because the agent is in reality Allah, and the metaphorical agent, who they say engenders the action, he is also Allah.’” Who knows that there is no agent except Allah (TA) when he attains extinction in the Works (of Allah), at the presence of the Works, he has found some faith. But if he extinguishes himself in the attributes (of Allah), he ascends from this station. And the attributes of Allah are (well) known among all of us, they can be read in the beginning of (any) book on the unity (of Allah): power, will, knowledge, life, hearing, sight, speech. These are the attributes of Allah (TA), and when we leave these attributes for Allah (alone), we arrive to the extinction in the Attributes, knowing there is no power except that it belongs to Allah. The scholars have settled for us in the introductory teachings (of tawhid) that this (power) is of the attributes of Allah the Most High; and (likewise) there is no will except that belonging to Allah, and there is no life except that belonging to Allah, and no knowledge except that belonging to Allah, and no hearing except that belonging to Allah, and no sight except that belonging to Allah, and no speech except that belonging to Allah. Who has knowledge of this as well finds extinction in the attributes. If he ascends (from this station), he finds extinction in the Essence (of Allah). All things go from him

until nothing remains except Allah. The tongue of his state says: “Nothing remains except Allah, nothing besides Him. There is not in that place any attachment or intelligibility.” --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

THE WISDOM OF THE SHAYKH Who points you towards the material world, has only betrayed you. Who points you to work, has only made you tired. He who has advised you truthfully is he who has pointed you towards Allah. So the shaykh is he who causes to follow, whose words point you to Allah (TA), and whose state raises you towards Allah (TA), and if you perceive his state, your aspiration is elevated towards Allah, and if he speaks, his words benefit you for the sake of Allah (TA), since he speaks with wisdom. He (TA) has said: “And only a little of the knowledge has been made known to you” (17:85), “And he to whom wisdom is granted has received abundant good” (2:269). The knowledge is small, but the wisdom is plentiful. So what is wisdom? The knowledge taken from Allah (TA) without any intermediary belongs to none but the prophets. As for wisdom, the Lord (TA) casts it into in the heart of His servant. The servant receives (it) from his Lord directly, so words are brought forth from Allah (TA) that only pass through the speaker, and he is the first to benefit from them, because the words appear from the Benefactor (TA). Indeed, Allah is the (only) Benefactor. As for words which appear from the body of man, they only pass announcements that do not arrive to the heart, and few who listen to them benefit. And if the speaker has been profuse with (such words), perhaps he will make his (own) heart distant (from Allah) by these words. This is not (what is meant by) wisdom.

LETTER 1 BismAllah al Rahman al Raheem, the Avenger, the Mighty, the Supreme. Peace upon the messenger, the master, the servant, who said: “Oh Fatimah, daughter of Muhammad, I will not avail you anything from God”. I thank Allah as He should be thanked. Let my salaams reach our son Ahmed Thiam and Malik Sow and to all of those who attribute themselves to me. Let it be known, two people are not from me nor from this tariqa. A divinely attracted mureed who is not a seeker and a seeker who is not divinely attracted as long as they stay as they are and stopped on the way. As you have known me, let those of you who want to be with me seek my way by words and actions by obeying the Divine commands and abstaining from what has been prohibited outwardly and inwardly. Be thirsty and long for reaching what satisfies Allah and His messenger. As for those who attribute themselves to me and commit anything contrary to the honorable sharia by

engaging in haram and neglecting Divine commands, then Allah is my witness and you are my witnesses that I am free from such people (i.e. they are not my followers). Oh Allah, I am innocent from what those have done. "And let those who oppose the Messenger's (Muhammad SAW) commandment (i.e. his Sunnah legal ways, orders, acts of worship, statements, etc.) beware, lest some affliction befall them or a painful torment.” "Oh believers, repent to Allah!" As for what you have said that my mureed is a pot filled with secrets from the three Divine levels then YES, BUT where is my mureed amongst you? He is harder to find than the red gold. I am about to take away the permission of any muqaddam who does not intervene when haram is done in his presence. If he is powerless to act let him immigrate to Allah, his messenger and to us. By Allah! Nothing has made you like this but the long time that you stayed away from us. Those who come to our presence many times will forget the taste of vain desires. There are young men here who have forgotten the taste of vain desires, some of them have forgotten even their wives and would not have intercourse unless ordered to do so. These are my students; others are not. There is no escape from turning back towards Allah with repentance, obedience, modesty, fear and knowledge. The Almighty said: "And say, ‘My Lord! Increase me in knowledge’." What is suitable for the mureed is not to stop on the way. Unless if he is with me and I cannot help him any further then he should leave to a sheikh who is higher than me. And know may Allah have mercy on you, that many claimants have veiled people from the way of Allah because they are not straight. Whoever attributes himself to Allah, then veils people from His path, then it is like he has declared war on Allah and has transformed himself to the side of losers because he is the reason for turning people away from Allah. You must come to me many times so you can receive from me the manners of seeking on the path just like you have received the truths of Divine Attraction. Those who do so will gain greatly. You must change what is unacceptable which happens within the brothers; change it by hand, or by the tongue or by heart as told in the hadeeth. And you must memorize my advice if you want to gain benefit; it is a duty on every mureed to memorize this letter. Everyone who comes across it should copy it, keep it and read it daily. Perform the prayers, pay the zakat, fast Ramadhan and make the pilgrimage if you are able. Pay sadaqah from your money for the sake of Allah. In the hadeeth of Muslim, the messenger, peace and blessings upon him said: “Purification is half of faith; Alhamdulillah fills the scale; Subhan Allah wal hamdulillah fills what is between earth and the heavens; prayers and patience are light; the Quran is either for you or against you. All people come and there are those who free themselves and those who enslave themselves.” Allah Almighty says: "Verily, Allâh enjoins Al-Adl (i.e. justice and worshipping none but Allâh Alone) and Al-Ihsân (i.e. to be patient in performing your duties to Allâh, totally for Allâh's sake and in accordance with the Sunnah of the Prophet SAW in a perfect manner), and giving (help) to kith and kin (i.e. all that Allâh has ordered you to give them e.g.,wealth, visiting, looking after them, or any other kind of help): and forbids Al-Fahshâ' (i.e all evil deeds, e.g. illegal sexual acts,disobedience of parents, polytheism, to tell lies, to give false witness, murder, etc.), and Al-Munkar (i.e all that is prohibited by Islâmic law: polytheism of every kind, disbelief and every kind of evil deeds, etc.), and Al-Baghy (i.e. all kinds of oppression). He admonishes you, that

you may take heed." So woe unto those who do not accept the rule of Allah and His messenger with complete submission. But whoever receives our letter and repents and does what he has missed then he will be happy in this life and the hereafter. Allah forgives what has passed. For the one who does not change, then I ask Allah to be my witness and for you to be my witnesses that I am free from that person. And I do not declare myself free from anyone until Allah and His messenger have done so. You must recite salatul fatih many times; you must conceal the secrets by words and deeds. Leave behind talking of haqa'eq (Divine Truths) and secrets; rather, seek the straight path. Following desires of the self is like worshipping Taghut (idol) after you have claimed to be believers. "Whoever disbelieves in Tâghût and believes in Allâh has grasped the most trustworthy handhold that will never break. And Allâh is All-Hearer, All-Knower." And you Ahmed Thiam should inform all my followers of this letter of mine. Send a copy of it to each leader amongst you and let him read it to those around him. I ask Allah that you accept it with pure hearts and listening ears. May Allah guide us and you,

LETTER 2 Bism Allah al Rahman al Raheem wa sala Allahu ala seidna Muhammad wa aalihi wa sahbihi wa salam. Alhamdulillah, who made those who follow his awliya successful and pious and made those who love and respect them and follow their orders winners. Peace upon the master of creation, the one who said, “Islam is based on five foundations: bearing the two witnesses, praying, fasting, paying the zakat, and performing the hajj for those who are able”. May Allah be pleased with his khaleefa the one who said: “If you ever hear anything attributed to me then place it on the scales of the Sharia. That which conforms take, and that which does not, leave”. From the writer to all the beloved ones living in Jameen the place of our father Ahmed Kirk and Abu Bakir Batti, his brother Muhammad and our loving brother Fajek Thiam and Muhammad Matah and Muhamad Majkeen and others, to each one there specifically by his name and person, AsSalamu Aleikum wa rahmat Allah wa Barakatuh. Based on the madaad of mawlana al Tijani followed by our dua that Allah improves our states and yours and grants us the sweetness of faith and truthfullness in servanthood and helps us to serve the Divine Right as it should be served. And we ask Allah to write our names and yours in the register where he records his beloved and chosen ones. Our sincere loving brother Abubakr Jaj has arrived. My advice to you and to myself is that same advice Allah has given the nations before you, which is to fear Allah in secret and in public. Taqwah (fearing Allah) is to obey Allah's orders and to abstain from everything that he prohibits. And the most important out of these orders is to perform the five obligatory prayers in a

congregation in their assigned times and with proper wudu (ablution). I am astonished at those who claim to be followers of our sheikh al Tijani while not taking care of the obligatory prayers or doing them without proper wudu, making tayammum instead, claiming that they are excused to do so. A valid excuse never lasts, nor does it apply to a whole tribe. Repent to your Creator! "Truly to Allâh we belong and truly, to Him we shall return." "So turn in repentance to your Creator and kill your (guilty) selves; that will be better for you with your Lord." You must recite the wazeefa with the brothers. Anyone of you who leaves it just one time after he receives this letter of mine then I am free from him and he is not from us nor are we from him. No one is a follower of our tariqa unless he acts upon what we and our companions act upon. There is no way out from consistently renewing repentance (tawbah) to Allah, while being constantly aware that Allah sees you at all times and with every breath, based upon the saying of the prophet salla Allah alaihi wa salam: “Ask (judge) yourselves before you will be asked (judged)”. Be truthful when dealing with your Lord. Do this by never finding yourselves where He has prohibited you to be nor being absent from where He has asked you to be. Keep away from all that is unlawful (haram). Haram leads to the hell fire. Never be absent minded (ghafla; not being conscious of Allah) as it is the cause of every sin, unlawful desire and misconduct. Abide by the guidelines of sulook (wayfaring), and you the people of Jameen must be like the people of Koosand like the people of Teeb Jikeen and the people of Teeb Jebseen. You must be like them in carrying out what is obligatory and avoiding what is unlawful. Do this by being patient and loving to each other and visiting each other. Be together all for the sake of Allah. Help each other to do good, remember your Lord and save your families from the hell fire. The prophet (sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) said, “Protect your families from fire by saying, ‘O my family do your prayers, O may family remember to fast, O my family remember to be clean, O my family remember the poor’”."And enjoin As-Salât (the prayer) on your family, and be patient in offering them [i.e. the Salât (prayers)]. We ask not of you a provision; We provide for you. And the good end (i.e. Paradise) is for the Muttaqûn (pious, God-conscious)." And know that it is a must that you thank your Lord for making you from the first ones of the people of the faydha. However, do not sit back and resort to comfort as there are people who came after you and whowill pass you by if you resort to laziness and comfort. We seek Allah's protection from being lazy as it is the utmost loss. Improvement every second is the aim, therefore you must build up your zawiyas by doing the five daily prayers and reciting the wazeefa and filling your times with salatul fatih. Those who do this will gain greatly. Wassalam.

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