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abdul wasay

INDIA
Topic initiated on Tuesday, August 05, 2003  -  2:50 PM Reply with quote
Sufism, meaning and institutions


Sufism, meaning and institutions
Sufism: what is Sufism? It should be taken under consideration that regarding meaning and explanation of Sufism, different Sufis have different claims. The conclusion of all such claims is that, the Sufism means:-
1. Purification of heart at the level of apprehension
2. Knowledge of inner realities of Islamic believes
3. An attempt of individual Muslim to realize in there personal experiences the living
presence of Allah.
4. Remaining stand on truth.
5. Renunciation of world.
6. To remove bad things and cultivate good qualities.
7. To be fearful of fearful things (Taqwa)
8. Control on intensions of soul
9. Complete absorption in praying ( )
10. Doing always good deeds etc etc
Any way whatever may be the definition of Sufism, if definition accords with Quran and Hadith of the Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w) then ti is a part of Islamic Fiq.
Institution:-
Regarding institution of Sufism there are also different views. Some views have accord with Quran and Hadith of Prophet (s.a.w). But most of them are based on forge Ahadith. This can be explained by following discussion.
Each sufi order claims that the doctrines and practices prevalent among the adherents of that order originated in the days of the founder of islam. It is said about prophet (s.a.w) that during the whole period of his Prophet hood which extended over twenty three years He did not take full meals even once.(Bukhari). He entered Makkha as a conqueror and the Makkans were waiting every moment for an order of general massacre, but the first thing that he did was general amnesty to all. He fasted continuously for month together, and slept little at night. It is on these traditions of Prophet (s.a.w) that some sufi's have built their doctrines and practices. It is good but practices must be conformed by Hadith of thr Prophet Muhammad (s.aw) .
It is also said that the Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w) is reported to have defined goodness or Ihsan as a mode of worshipping Allah, a way of complete absorption in praying to him.
"Worship your Allah as you are seeing Him if you are not able to see Him He is seeing you".
It is on this definition of Ishan that many sufi's have built their theory of devotion. This defition indicates the Prophet's theory of spiritual good and was rightly made a point for spiritual theories by sufi's. it is this defition of prayer that has helped the doctrine of Ecstasy which is so popular among the Muslim sufi's.
Most of the sufi's freely quote anecdotes from the life of the Propet and his companions, particularly Ali(r.a) to support the view that doctrine of ecstasy originated in the days of the Prophet and his companions. It is reported about Ali (r.a) that once an arrow struck deep into his body, people tried to get it out but could not succeed, as it was too deep to be extracted without extreme pain. He then began to say his prayers during which it was extracted after a deep operation with a sword. It is said that on account of his complete absorption he did not feel any pain until he had finished his prayers and seen the blood rushing out of the wound. This is good but problems emerges when sufi's did not consider this absorption necessary only at the time of canonical prayers but also at the occasion of Dhikr and meditation which were given an importance equal to the obligatory prayers by many of them. Dhikr literally means remembering Allah. In popular language it means repeating the name of Allah. The Quran says:-
"Remember Allah much, that you may be successful".
At next place Allah says:-
"O you who believe! Remember Allah, remembering frequently".
The early followers of the Prophet interpreted this verse about Dhikr in a very broad sense. The idea was thatany thing done in the name of Allah, conforming to his law and order are performing Dhikr. It was considered something equivalent to the ethical conception of performing one's duty or discharinging ones function of life, strickly according to the massage and commands of the almighty Allah. Further later sufi's began to attach greater importance to the popular meaning of the term Dhikr, thus vastly limiting the scope of the above quoted verse of the Quran. It was on account of this limited interpretation that the later sufi's invented so many novel ways of calling out the name of Allah. Howling, singing and dancing dervishes are distinguished according to the different modes of performing their Dhikr.
Similarly the term Jihad as its root Jahid, implies, means to make an effort. The Quran used it in the same wide sense of making efforts in the path of Allah. The sufi's limited it to only one kind of effort, that of fighting against one's own evil self, against the satanic elements in human nature.
Conclusion:-
All these illustrations show that in later days many of the Islamic institutions lost their original meaning though they still retained the same old garb of name or outward appearance. This change took place very slowly and imperceptibly, and was responsible, in no small degree, for undermining the strength and vitality of the Muslim community.

Abdul Wasay Bhat
E Mail:- abwasay@yahoo.co.in
safia

PAKISTAN
Posted - Tuesday, August 05, 2003  -  9:45 PM Reply with quote
Assalam o alikum
This topic is something I wanted to know about very much.This is discussed a lot in my family. In answer to my questions about sufism,I was told that it is a state or honor given to some by Allah taala & one can only know about it by expreiencing it. My question are: Is Sufism proven by Ahadith in any way?? Is Dhikr a Sunnah of the Holy Prophet?? Are all the people doing Dhikr & indulging in Sufism wrong??Is it true that some people dead OR alive have been given special tasks by Allah which they & Sufis of differnt levels do??
aslam

PAKISTAN
Posted - Wednesday, August 06, 2003  -  7:09 AM Reply with quote
Salams,The following article by Ghamidi Sahib,a rather lengthy one,might be helpful in this regard:--(Monthly RenaissanceJul-Agust93www.renaissance.com.pk).

" Sufism (tasawwuf) is entirely different in all fundamentals and principles from Islam. Even a cursory analysis clearly brings out this fact. It is observed thus :
1. The Quran defines Tauheed (monotheism) as the acknowledgement of Allah as the only Ilaah, who is free from all flaws and imperfections and to whom all gracious attributes are ascribed which are accepted by all norms of sense and reason and which have been explained by the Almighty Himself through His prophets. The word Ilaah in the Arabic language is specifically used for someone who at some level or the other possess control and authority without requiring any cause or means to execute what He intends. According to the Quran, if an attribute is acknowledged for someone which is actually the result of such control and authority then this is what is called Shirk (polytheism), and it states in unequivocal terms that such an attribution is only true in case of the Almighty. It demands from all Muslims to acknowledge this control and authority only for Allah in their faith, deeds as well as in all their objectives.
It is this Tauheed upon which our religion is based. It is around this basic belief that the mission of all the prophets had revolved. Abraham and Moses, John and Jesus, all upto Muhammad (peace be upon them) had proclaimed and propagated this message. All Divine Books elaborated upon this at length. There is no other level of Tauheed above this for which a person must strive in this world.
In Tasawwuf, however, this is regarded as the first level of Tauheed and it is meant for the common man. It is considered as a mere prelude to the actual contents of Tauheed. The highest level of Tauheed, according to the exponents of this religion, is to acknowledge existence only for the Almighty and simultaneously affirm that no one besides Him actually exists. All the determinations (ta`ayyunaat) of the Universe whether observed directly or perceived through reason and intellect are mental concepts and emanate from the Absolute Being---the Almighty. They have no external existence beyond the Absolute Being. The Universe is actually another name for the manifestations of Allah. It is God as regards its substance though it cannot be considered so as regards its determinations. Its nature is nothingness (`adam). If it is regarded to exist then this would be associating something in the Being of Allah, and this is precisely what the popular sufi maxim Laa maujooda illalaah (there is nothing except God) negates.
This same view about Tauheed is held by Shiri Shankar Achaariya, the famous commentator of the "Upanishads", along with Shri Ram Noje Achaariya, Plotinus and Spinoza. Among modern western philosophers Leibniz, Fichte, Hagel, Schonpenhauer, Bradley and Benedict are the ardent exponents of this concept. Among these, Shri Shankar, Plotinus and Spinoza uphold the philosophy of Wahdat-ul-wujood (Oneness of Being), while Ram Noje Achaariya advocates the philosophy of Wahdat-us-shuhood (Oneness of Witnessing) as does Shri Krishan in "Gita". The "Upanishads", "Braham Suter", "Gita", and "Fusoos-ul-Hikam", occupy the same position in this religion as the one occupied by the Torah, the Zaboor, the Bible and the Quran in the divinely revealed religions. Viewed thus, it can be observed that in contrast with the Quranic concept of Tauheed, this fallacious concept has remained a universal evil, influencing many intelligent people the world over.
2. The concept of Tauheed presented by the Quran is an obvious reality asserted by the Almighty Himself in all Divine books and explained by all His prophets. It conforms with the highest possible standards of rationality and is, in fact, the call of our hearts. Its rationality is so indisputable that those enlightened with true knowledge as well as the angels vouch for it and none of its aspects is concealed from our eyes. According to the Quran:
"Allah [Himself] is a witness that there is no God save Him. And the angels and the men of learning [too are witnesses]. [He] is the Executor of justice. There is no god but He, the Exalted in Power, the Wise." (3:18)
All the Prophets were sent forth in this world to call mankind towards this belief. This was their foremost obligation, and if they had failed in fulfilling it, they would have, in fact, failed to discharge their basic duty as Prophets. It must also be borne in mind that this assignment was not something beyond their ability, for the Quran clearly says that the Almighty never imposes an obligation on someone which is beyond his capability.
In tasawwuf, on the contrary, when a saalik (the traveller of the spiritual path) gets to know the secrets of his Tauheed as stated above, words are unable to state and define it and a person, therefore,is unable to propagate it as well1. It is said that the more it is explained the more complicated it gets and the more it is revealed the more it gets concealed. Therefore, the secrets of this Tauheed cannot be written down and, in fact, the disclosure of these secrets amounts to infidelity.
3. The Quran categorically states that the institution of Prophethood has been terminated at the Prophethood of Mohammad (sws). This quite obviously means that all forms of divine revelation have been brought to an end and no person after the prophets can claim utter innocence from any sin and divine protection from any evil on their basis. This meaning of the finality of Prophethood has been stated in clear terms by the Prophet (sws) himself:
"Mubasharaat are the only remnants of Prophethood. People inquired: `What are mubasharaat?' The Prophet (pbuh) replied: `Good dreams'." (Bukhari, Kitab-ud-Ta`beer)
However, our sufis have always negated the implications of the finality of Prophethood and have their own peculiar concept about this finality. They maintain that the Almighty still sends down His revelation to their leading figures, just as He did to His Prophets. They also claim that like the Prophet (sws), many of their own distinguished people have ascended the heavens to witness Divine Disclosures (Tajalliaat) and were also blessed with the opportunity of a dialogue with the Almighty. According to them, the meaning of the finality of Prophethood is that no one will be able to give a new Shariah, but as far as other features and characteristics of prophethood are concerned, they still exist and are attainable. To them the inspiration (ilhaam) of their elect, because of their innocence, is free of any traces of evil and its authenticity is beyond any shadow of doubt. The views of the person among them who is entrusted with the first station of bestowed spiritual stations (maqaamaat-i-wahabiah) are regarded by them to be based on truth in their entirety, and no evil can make an incursion into them. They say that such a person follows a Prophet only because he has been divinely commanded to support him, otherwise he does not need a rophet or an angel to receive divine guidance because of his own direct link with the Almighty. Therefore, on this earth his own words and deeds are the final authority to which the Quran and Sunnah themselves submit.
After violating the sanctity of the institution of Prophethood, they move ahead and enter into the realms which lie beyond the spacio-temporal order crying out in frenzy: `O daring spirit of man! The Lord is reachable as well'. Their control and authority at this stage extends over the entire space-time continuum. They are not only aware of the language of birds but are even aware of a footfall and are even able to hear the sound of an ant walking on a stone at night. They have complete knowledge of a person's fate and fortune and are able to read a person's mind. They hold and grasp the world and enforce the orders of the Almighty. At this point they cry out: `O group of Prophets you have only been given the title of a Prophet and you never received what we were given' ("Futoohaat-i-Makkiya", Ibni Arabi, Vol 2, Pg 90)
4. According to the Quran, the basic duty which Islam requires of its believers is to worship the Almighty. Worship, in reality, is a subjective phenomenon and first of all appears within a person, and after it becomes related with his external self, it completely encircles his personality. As a result, his relationship with the Almighty is that of a worshiper and the worshipped. Throughout his life, he tries to worship the Almighty in the most befitting manner in order to please Him and thereby become entitled to the life of eternal bliss---something which he has been promised by Allah through His Prophets.
On the contrary, since according to the sufis, man is actually a Determination (ta`ayyun) of the Almighty and since on the basis of this Determination he has left the Domain of the Divine (`aalam-i-lahoot) and entered the corporeal world (`aalam-i-naasoot), therefore, a return to his origin is actually what is required of him. Hence, according to this religion, the relationship between a man and the Almighty is that of a lover and his beloved. He regards his own actual reality---the Almighty---his beloved and tries to seek Him under the guidance of a spiritual mentor after he is made aware of his reality by his mentor. Until he is united with his reality, he rolls and writhes in the agony of remaining parted from his beloved. Since death, in fact, means an eternal union with his actual reality, therefore, it is called `union' (wasal) and the function held to commemorate it is called `urs'. All the poetry of sufism is actually a tale of this love and its related issues.
5. The Quran categorically states that the religion it has revealed upon mankind through the Prophet (sws), is totally complete and final in all respects and there is no possibility of any addition. It says:
"This day I have perfected your religion for you and completed my favour upon you, and have chosen for you Islam as your religion." (5:3)
The Prophet (sws) used to explain this verse in the following words:
"Listen! Indeed, the best book is the Book of Allah and the best guidance is the Guidance of Muhammad (sws) [the Prophet of Allah] and the worst of all things are those which are new to this religion and every new thing leads [a man] astray." (Muslim, Kitab-ul-Jum`ah)
The followers and exponents of tasawwuf maintain that the religion presented by the Quran and Sunnah is just a preliminary principle consisting of a few superficial things. The real spirit of this religion can only be saught, after the death of the Prophet (sws) and his Companions, by a methodology they themselves have formulated. Furthermore, the way to obtain the real religion beyond this preliminary principle has also been revealed only to them. Consequently, there exists a whole shariah of auraad, ashghaal, chillaas and muraaqbaat2, which is above and beyond the Shariah given by Allah, being not contained in the Quran and Hadith. In fact, it is totally against the aims which the Quran and Ahaadith intend to achieve, and about it they openly say that it can only be obtained after associating oneself with their distinguished people. It is called Tareeqat.
According to sufism, the level of excellence that can be achieved in virtues like perseverance, thanksgiving, veracity, sacrifice, modesty, trust and faith is so high that even the Prophet (sws) and his Companions hardly qualify for the first or second level. As far as the third or the level of the elect of the elect is concerned, even they could not attain it. In this regard, the ultimate target of the sufis is much beyond the one fixed by the Almighty. The best example of the contradictions which consequently result between their words and deeds is a piece of writing of a great scholar of tasawwuf of contemporary times. He writes that for a number of years he remained very perplexed at the fact that none of the sufi saints had ever committed a sin, whilst it is historically proven that some of the Companions of the Prophet (sws) had even committed as grave a sin as adultery and were also punished for it. He goes on to write that after many years of contemplation he was able to solve the riddle. He concluded that none of the Companions of the Prophet (sws) committed a sin intentionally, but since the Almighty wanted to complete and finalize his religion through them, He forced them to commit some sins so that He could reveal His laws and directives about them.
In the short space of this article, it is not possible to discuss this topic in detail. However, from the few examples quoted, it is quite evident that tasawwuf is a totally different religion from Islam and has been given patronage under the deceiving label of the reality of Islam. After appreciating this fact, it is necessary to make efforts to reform this state of affairs.
In my estimation, only two measures are needed in this regard: Firstly, those who undertake this job must be very clear that now the Quran is the final and ultimate word of Allah on this earth and every belief of Islam is stated in it. Secondly, the Arabic language, congregations in which the meaning of the Quran is recited and other ways of education should be given patronage so that no one is able to fool the general masses about the content of the Quran.
These two steps, it is our sincere belief, will go a long way towards ridding our society from the evil creed of tasawwuf.

(Translated from Ghamidi's "Burhan" by Shehzad Saleem)"
Jhangeer Hanif

PAKISTAN
Posted - Wednesday, August 06, 2003  -  7:34 AM Reply with quote
I hope you, Safia, find answers to your questions in the article quoted by Aslam.
safia

PAKISTAN
Posted - Wednesday, August 06, 2003  -  10:26 PM Reply with quote
Thank u both (very much) for such a detailed answer & taking interest in my queries.Jizak Allaho khair
aslam

PAKISTAN
Posted - Thursday, August 14, 2003  -  10:39 AM Reply with quote
Salams,Here is relevant article by Asif Iftikhar:--
Tawhid in Sufism

Asif Iftikhar
The face was red with flushing blood as he tried to stop his breath for as long as he could. The eyes bulged out, though staring at nothing. Small rivulets of perspiration shone on the forehead, and the voice coming through the foaming mouth was barely audible. He could scarcely speak when he tried to complete his sentence, and then did that through his gestures, nodding with satisfaction as if the message had been transmitted by some telepathic process.

The man, a neighbour of mine, was not faking it out. He was a highly educated professional and belonged to a very respectable family. He truly believed in what he was trying to say. Somehow -- perhaps because of my appearance -- he had a misconception that I belonged to his ‘clan’. So he took very little time to begin sharing his ideas with me: ‘The fragrance of flowers, the song of birds, the air, everything... but then, you know it. Yes, yes, you know it. I am Allah, you are Allah, everything is Allah....’

I realised afterwards that in a very crude manner, the man was expressing (though technically incorrectly) ideas he had gathered from some Sufi....


The Qur’anic concept of Tawhid (monotheism) is that there is only one God -- Allah. All those characteristics which can only be associated with God must not be attributed to anyone else.
The Qur’an says:

Declare [O Prophet] that1 God is One2! He is the rock.3 He is neither anyone’s father nor anyone’s son. And none is equal to Him.[112:1-3]

Therefore, the whole world is His creation: He is above all, and there is nothing like Him.
It is the correct belief in God which enlightens the heart and solves the riddle this universe is. Every creation points out to the fact that there must be a Creator and therefore reflects God:

Allah is the Light of the heavens and the earth. [24:35]

In Sufism, however, Tawhid, is expressed as ‘only Absolute Reality is absolutely real’. To the Sufi, this concept of Tawhid is different from pantheism (regarded un-Islamic by almost all the Muslim scholars), for the Sufistic Tawhid is not ‘everything is God’: it is ‘God is everything’, or, more ostensibly, ‘there is nothing except God’. The result is that in Sufism, Tawhid expressed as la ilaha illallah (there is no God but Allah) is the Tawhid of the ordinary, whereas the Tawhid of the elect is la mawjuda illallah (there is nothing but Allah). This means that whatever we see does not have any significance, for it does not exist in reality. It is only relatively real. What does exist in reality is God. Ibn ‘Arabi writes in his book Fasusu’l-Hikam:

Although, apparently Creation is distinct from the Creator, in reality the Creator is but Creation and Creation is but the Creator. All these are from one reality. Nay, it is but He who is the Only Reality, and it is He Who manifests Himself in all these realities.

This concept is called Wahdatu’l-Wajud (Unity of Being): the idea is that a knife and a sword, for example, are called by their respective names and are treated as distinct and separate items. But when their ‘essence’ steel moves wara u’l-wara (‘beyond the beyond’, that is beyond all forms and shapes), it is called steel. Similarly, God is considered as the Ultimate Reality, which is transcendent (beyond shape and form) but in essence immanent in Creation. In the words of Sha Muhammad Isma‘il (‘Abaqat, ‘abaqah 20, al-isharah u’l-awwal):

For all Creation, Ma bihitta ‘yun4 is only one Definite being.

Another version of this concept is Wahdatu’l-Shahud (Unity of Appearance), according to which, God is the only Reality, and everything else is illusion. This version is again the same concept expressed in a different way. According to Sha Muhammad Isma‘il (‘Abaqat, ‘abaqah 20, al-isharahu’l-awwal):

...deep analysis will show that there is no difference except that owing to the difference in their stages and in their ways of reaching Lahut,5 they [the proponents of the two versions] have adopted varying styles to express their opinions.

Such beliefs often result in a strong tendency to regard a man’s physical self as a ‘form’ and to consider this form as an obstruction in his going warau’l-wara (beyond the beyond) and in reaching the Ultimate Reality. Theosophical (to be more precise, existential) realisation of this Reality through self-denial and self-control becomes the ultimate goal of life, whereas according to the Qur’an, the purpose of man's life is worship and servitude to God (51-56) and the purpose of religion is the purification of his soul to enable him to do just that (62:2). In Sufism, therefore, purification of the soul becomes the ultimate target of the Sufi’s life rather than becoming the outcome of following the dictates of Islam. For this purification, rituals and methods other than those recommended or demanded by Islam are often prescribed with such authority6 and adhered to with such pertinacity that they virtually amount to innovation in religion. That which is a means to an end becomes the end in itself: man's humility, which in Islam leads to servitude, becomes a source of his pride in Sufism; servitude, which makes him a humble servant of his Master, makes him the Master.
According to Sufism, perfect awareness of the Absolute Reality results in the Sufi's being absolutely unaware of Creation and of his own self; to be more precise, it results in his being aware of the fact that in reality there is no existence of Creation and even of his own self. This concept often leads to great imbalance; in negating his ego, the Sufi ends up worshipping it; in negating Creation, he negates life itself.
Absolute negation of the self is impracticable, absolute negation of Creation impractical.
No Man born of a woman can conceive nothingness for himself, unless he is deranged enough not to perceive anything at all. Life is not insignificant. Nor is consciousness. And every one of us knows this. Life still brings laughter, death still summons tears. Intellect is still honoured, lack of consciousness is still regarded as insanity. A man thinks and therefore is. When he thinks, he knows -- consciously or otherwise -- that it is `he' who is thinking. Therefore, if he thinks or believes that he does not exist -- that only God exists --, then he will usually end up thinking or believing that it is ‘he’ who is actually God. But God he cannot be. For the best of men -- the messengers of God --, even in their greatness, always remained in want of their Lord's mercy for the most minor of their needs:

Allahumma inni lima anzalta ilayya min khayrin faqir
Lord! verily I am needy for anything you may bestow upon me out of good. [A prayer of Moses (sws); see the Qur’an 28:24]

Allahumma inni ‘abduka, ibn ‘bdika, ibn amatika, nasiyati biyadik....
Lord! verily I am your slave, the son of your bondman, the son of your bondwoman, my forelock is in your hands. [that is I am completely in your power]....
[A bedtime prayer of the Prophet (sws)].

Even a messenger of God is a servant of his Master. To him God is the Master whom he loves with all his heart and all his mind and all his soul. To the Sufi, however, God is the beloved whose love leads him to realise the Ultimate Reality -- and thus makes him the Master (though the Sufi will sometimes deny this. However, as long as ‘he’ believes -- consciously or otherwise -- that nothing expect God exists, he will usually be thinking of himself as the Deity7).
The usual result of this shift in the object is that in addition to the spiritual exercises and rituals recommended or prescribed by Islam to enable man to worship and serve God, the Sufi virtually makes many other exercises and rituals obligatory, which often leave him with very little energy and motivation to do God's bidding where it is actually required. And since the Sufi has a philosophical foundation for this shift from the balance required by Islam, he usually ends up being a slave of his own desires.
Vis-a-vis the society as a whole, the object of an individual’s life as envisaged by Sufism is impractical ad absurdum, as realisation of the object by all would mean negation of Creation by all and therefore negation of society, whereas realisation of the object of a man’s life as envisaged by Islam would result in the creation of a truly harmonious society. Worshipping and serving God entail responsibility towards society. One’s affiliation with society is not negated as such in Islam as a goal for achieving self-purification, just as none of the blessings of God is negated for this purpose, howsoever trivial it may appear to be.
Only when such negation becomes necessary for preventing a greater injustice to the society or to one's own self does Islam allow -- and in some cases demand -- that an individual deny the privileges he has and negate his affiliation with his society.
In Sufism, however, there seems to be a strong tendency to regard asceticism as highly desirable per se. If nothing else, there is at least an abnormal emphasis on the negation of worldly life:
Ibn ‘Ata Allah writes:

The source of every disobedience, indifference, and passion is self-satisfaction. The source of every obedience, vigilance, and virtue is dissatisfaction with one’s self. (Tr. Cryil Glasse, The Concise Encyclopaedia of Islam, second edition, London: Stacey International, 1991, p. 378).

Al Ghazali says in a al-Munqidh mina‘l-D~alal:

Then I turned my attention to the Way of the Sufis. I knew that it could not be traversed to the end without both doctrine and practice, and that the gist of the doctrine lies in overcoming the appetites of the flesh and getting rid of its evil dispositions and vile qualities, so that the heart may be cleared of all but God....

When I considered the intention of my teaching, I perceived that instead of doing it for God's sake alone I had no motive but the desire for glory and reputation. I realised that I stood on the edge of a precipice and would fall into Hellfire unless I set about to mend my ways... Conscious of my helplessness and having surrendered my will entirely, I took refuge with God as a man in sore trouble who has no resource left. God answered my prayer and made it easy for me to turn my back on reputation and wealth and wife and children and friends. (Tr. Cyril Glasse, The Concise Encyclopaedia of Islam, second edition, London: Stacey International, 1991. p. 379)

Is this abnormal inclination towards asceticism deliberate? Is it obligatory or merely desirable? -- these questions may be debatable. However, one thing is certain. As far as the concept of perfect awareness of the Absolute Reality is concerned, it inevitably leads to the conceptual negation of Creation and therefore of society.
Perhaps because of the impracticability and impracticality of their ideas, the Sufis have usually regarded it desirable per se not to reveal their inner thoughts about Tawhid (and when they do reveal them, the style they use makes their language unintelligible to most people), whereas the Prophet (sws) was told to communicate his message clearly as part of his mission (the Qur’an 5:67):

Know therefore that the ultimate of all disciples of Mystic intuition is this Tawhid, and the secrets of this discipline and cannot be written in any book because, according to a saying of ‘Arifin [those who have achieved awareness], exposing the secrets of Divinity amounts to infidelity. [al-Ghazali, Ihya ‘Ulumi’l-Din, Vol. 4. p. 641]
(Excerpted from Monthly RenaissanceJuly-August97www.renaissance.com.pk)
Jhangeer Hanif

PAKISTAN
Posted - Thursday, August 21, 2003  -  5:31 PM Reply with quote
I think pasting a link is sufficient to refer to the article that you wish to.
aboosait

INDIA
Posted - Tuesday, August 26, 2008  -  6:03 PM Reply with quote
quote:

I think pasting a link is sufficient to refer to the article that you wish to.




Finding Solace in Sufism

http://islamicvoice.com/June2006/BouquetsandBrickbats/

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