Umar ibn Khattab RA once asked Ibn Ka’ab RA the definition of taqwa. In reply Ibn Ka’ab RA asked, “Have you ever had to traverse a thorny path?” Umar RA replied in the affirmative and Ka’ab RA continued, “How do you do so?”
Umar RA said that he would carefully walk through after first having collected all loose and flowing clothing in his hands so nothing gets caught in the thorns hence injuring him. Ka’ab RA said, “This is the definition of taqwa, to protect oneself from sin through life’s dangerous journey so that one can successfully complete the journey unscathed by sin.”
This mortal world of ours is a bed of thorns, full of the thorns of sins, therefore, one should live in this world in a way that one does not get entangled in the thorns of sin. The name of this attitude to life is Taqwa
‘From the beginning of time, Allah Ta’ala selected the month of Ramadan as the season for abundant blessings and divine light (tajalliyat). Whenever Allah Ta’ala sent any gift from the sky for the reformation of humanity, Allah selected the month of Ramadan. The famous books and scriptures of the previous Ambiya were also revealed in this month culminating with the revelation of the Quran.
Ramadan is near. During this month divine light (Nur and Tajalli) of Allah will cover everyone, provisions for forgiveness of man will be made. Allah Ta’ala, the most Generous, will increase His generosity. The doors of Jannah will be opened, the gates of Jahannam will be locked.
O one who seeks good, go ahead! O one who intends evil, stop!
Every night countless sinful people are saved from the blaze of Jahannam. For the reformation and cleansing of the evil soul (nafs), Allah Ta’ala has ordained fasting during the day, so that a believer can acquire the highest stages of taqwa and become close to Allah Ta’ala.
During the nights we are encouraged to listen and recite the Quran. By means of the fast, the inner self (nafs) is cleansed and for the enhancement of the soul (ruh), Allah Ta’ala has arranged the recital of the Quran.
It is as though in this blessed month, the [inhabitants of] earth are given a chance to link up with the higher ranked Angels in the skies
By ‘Allamah Muhammad Yusuf Al Binnory (rahimahullah)
Taken from al-miftah.com
“If you dislike them, then it is quite likely that you dislike something and Allah has placed a lot of good in it.” [Surah An-Nisaa’: verse 19]
Though addressed to men in regard to their wives (i.e. do not divorce them for something you dislike in them), this is a beautiful part of human relationship, not just in marriage but as a general principle which can be applied to our spouses, children and families.
Sometimes we do not like something about a person but maybe in that Allah ta’ala has placed benefit for us i.e. maybe Allah ta’ala will give reward in the Aakhirah if Sabr is made or maybe in comparison to that one negative, there may be so many positives. When there is something we dislike in a person then we should be positive about it and find something we like, as there will definitely be many more things we like in every single person.
These are noble characteristics of noble people who do not look at the superficial. They find good in every relationship and this is what we should do and when we do this, then dealing with people and life will become easy.
By being negative towards people we are making our own selves miserable and making others around us miserable too.
By being positive life becomes easier and if one is positive all the time then it becomes part of nature.
Aalimah S. Ahmed
Junaid al-Baghdadi (raheemahullah), said:
No one has reached Allah except through Allah. And the path to reaching Allah is following the Chosen One, al-Mustafa, Sallallahu ‘alaihi Wasallam
“Say, if you love Allah, then follow me and Allah will love you and forgive you your sins.” [3:31]
Rajab al-Hanbali (Raheemahullah) mentioned that the great Sufi, Fudayl ibn al-`Iyad (Raheemahullah) explained Allah’s words,
“That He may test which of you is best in action” [Qur’an, 67:2] by saying,
That is, who is sincere in it and correct in it. And the action that is sincere but incorrect is not accepted. And if it is correct and insincere then it is also not accepted. It is only accepted when it is both sincere and correct. And it is only sincere when it is for the sake of Allah Most High, and correct when it is done according to the sunnah.
Read in full Intention: Validity And Sincerity
With regard to “holding the hand of Saints”, a poet describes as to how Allah ta’ala opens up the road;
My journey has become easy now that the winds have changed their direction. The lamps of the road have lit up now that I have held your hand.
When one “holds the hand” of a pious person, i.e. when he surrenders himself for reformation under the guidance of a qualified spiritual mentor i.e. a Shaykh, then it becomes easy for him to conform to the Sunnah and the Shar’iah, as well as to abstain from sins.
Maulana Rumi (R.A.) says: “It is completely useless to swim about in the sea of Reason and intellect. There is need for the ship of Nabi Nooh (A.S.) i.e. The help of the friends of Allah. Look how Nabi Nooh’s (A.S.) son, Kan’aan, depended on Reason alone saying: “The high mountains shall save me from this storm”. He considered the ark of Nabi Nooh (A.S.) as being despicable. The result was that the ship was saved during the deluge and reached the high mountain while Kan’aan was drowned.
Maulana Rumi (R.A.) says:
“When you do not look with proper sight, then you look upon the love and company of the saintly ones and their obedience i.e. their ship as despicable, and you look upon your imitation of the people of Europe as the high mountains of Intellect and Reason. But, beware, do not look upon this ship as being of no value and a thing to be despised.
The power of Allah is such that with one wave, He can turn the ship upside down. But the ship which travels in the shadow of Allah’s Mercy, in spite of its outward weakness and the evil intention of Shaytaan, it will pass through all the trials in safety.
Ma’arife-e-Mathnawi. Full article here
Maulana Jalaluddin Rumi (Raheemahullah) mentions the exceptional stage reached by those who adopt patience in abstaining from fulfilling their evil desires;
On subscribing to sabr (patience) and sacrifice, the ‘Ahh’ which continually and invariably issues forth from that ‘bleeding’ heart transports one to the supreme and absolute stage of Wilaayat.
Maulana Rumi (Raheemahullah) says, “Those who resort to Sabr on the Path of Allah have acquired the Wilaayat of the Siddiqeen”
Shaykh Yusnu Patel (Raheemahullah) presents a wonderful analogy. He asks,
“When does the sun rise?” And then he, himself, gives the reply: “When the horizon turns red.”
Then he continues to describe the spiritual condition of the heart in the same light :
When the heart turns red with the blood of one’s evil desires which have been sacrificed for the pleasure of Allah Ta’ala, then Allah Ta’ala causes not just one ‘sun’ but many ‘suns’ of His Muhabbat (Love) and Ma’rifat (Recognition) to rise in such a heart.
The sun of this world has restrictions : It neither lights up the entire world at once, nor is its heat always the same. Moreover, whilst it brings light and warmth as it rises; it inevitably sets, leaving behind darkness.
The ‘suns’ of Allah’s love rises within the heart and lights it up. These ‘suns’ do not set unless the person becomes a persistent sinner, without Taubah (repentance). Added to this, the one in whose heart, the ‘suns’ of Allah’s love and ma’rifat have risen, will generate such light that will in turn light up the hearts of people all over the world.
The pain endured by the heart brings in its wake, happiness, satisfaction, the noor of Imaan and the sweetness of Imaan. In fact, the sorrow of the heart on this path of Divine Love is the very envy of happiness. Such a person is blessed with the companionship of Allah Ta’ala, for Allah Ta’ala says : ‘I am with those of broken hearts.’
Man is a bondsman (slave) of Allah, an ‘abd’.
In the word ‘abd’, the meaning of humility and a distressed state are included. Hence for someone to be an ‘abd’ (slave of Allah) and at the same time to have in him pride or arrogance, is a contradiction and the cause of great loss.
Allah has created you from dust, hence a bondsman,
Adopt an attitude of meekness and humility like dust.