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Studying the Books of the Sufis under the Guidance of the Mashaaikh

booksHazrat Moulana Muhammad Ilyaas (rahmatullahi ‘alaih) once mentioned:

Our Deeni elders discourage people who are not bayt to pious, learned and experienced mashaaikh from studying the books of the sufis (as they will not be able to comprehend the knowledge in its correct perspective and this in turn will cause them to fall into confusion and misunderstanding in their Deen). As for those who are bayt to pious, learned and experienced mashaaikh, they may study the books of the sufis under the supervision and guidance of their shaikh. In this way, there will be no harm caused to their Deen. (Malfoozaat Hazrat Moulana Muhammad Ilyaas (rahmatullahi ‘alaih) pg.57)

Detaching the Heart from Material

Allah in heart 2Hazrat Mufti Ebrahim Salejee (Daamat Barakaatuhu) mentioned:

Greed and the desire for more, destroys one’s entire deen as it causes one to exceed the limits of shariah in acquiring the material. Such a person cannot be rectified even by the best of company he may keep. A moderate effort needs to be made for the world, while the heart must be detached from everything and attached only to the mubaarak Being of Allah Ta‘ala. The Awliyaa had made a great effort to acquire this. 

Salvation in Seclusion

1041301465Hazrat Moulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi (rahmatullahi ‘alaih) once mentioned:

Nowadays, salvation lies in keeping to oneself and associating less with people. (In this way, one will be able to concentrate on one’s self reformation and be safeguarded from the wrongs of association and company.) I came across the statement of a pious person in a certain kitaab wherein he says that when remaining in seclusion, one should not make the intention that he is doing so in order to be saved from the harms of people. Rather, he should think to himself, “I am like a snake or scorpion that can harm people and therefore I should not associate with them in order to protect them from my harm.” How cautious indeed were our predecessors and seniors in ensuring that they did not fall into self admiration and other similar sins! (Malfoozaat Husnul Azeez pg.116)

Turning to Allah Ta‘ala First

QubaHazrat Mufti Ebrahim Salejee (Daamat Barakaatuhu) mentioned:

Unfortunately, today we turn our focus to Allah Ta‘ala only at the end, and as a last resort. In a crisis we turn to all other means besides Allah Ta‘ala. When all these means fail, then eventually we resort to Allah Ta‘ala. This needs to be reversed and Allah Ta‘ala should be the first One we supposed to be turning to. 

The Importance of Remaining within the Parameters set by the Pious Predecessors

pencilHazrat Shaikh Moulana Muhammad Zakariyya (rahmatullahi ‘alaih) writes:

I hold the same view regarding my seniors which Hazrat Umar bin Abdul Azeez (rahmatullahi ‘alaih) expressed regarding his seniors (i.e. the Sahaabah [radiyallahu anhum]) when he said:

Indeed they possessed sound knowledge through which they could remain firm on Sharee’ah and on account of their deep insight; they were able to abstain from innovations. They were definitely more capable of understanding complex, intricate masaa’il and on account of their superiority (in knowledge and profound understanding), they were definitely more worthy of being followed. To fail to meet the standard which they set is to fall short and to attempt to surpass their standard is to tire oneself in a futile effort. Some people fell short in meeting the standard of the Sahaabah (radiyallahu anhum) and thus failed to tread the path of moderation, while others attempted to surpass the standard of Sahaabah (radiyallahu anhum) and thus surpassed the limits of Deen. Our seniors (Sahaabah [radiyallahu anhum]) were between the two extremes, treading the straight path of complete guidance (and moderation) (Abu Dawood #4614).

Actually, the problem in this corrupt era is that people feel that a person will not be regarded as a true scholar if he remains within the parameters set by the pious predecessors and does not innovate something which contradicts their way. In order for him to be regarded as a scholar, he will need to oppose the way of the pious predecessors and produce something which is completely different.

Hazrat Mu’aaz (radiyallahu anhu) had foretold the coming of such crucial times wherein innovations and fitnahs would creep into Deen when he said:

Fitnahs in Deen will come after you (in the coming eras). In these fitnahs, wealth will be in great abundance and the Quraan will be opened (and each person will refer directly to the Quraan and interpret it in his own way) until even a believer and a hypocrite, a man and a woman, a child and an adult, a slave and a free person will all take the Quraan (and attempt to explain its meaning according to his own logic and reasoning). It is close that a person at that time will say (to himself), “What is the matter with people? Why do they not follow me, whereas I have studied the Quraan? They will not follow me until I do not contrive and innovate something different for them (through which they will become impressed by my knowledge and begin to follow me).” Beware of their innovations, for what they have innovated is misguidance (Abu Dawood #4613).

This is the reason why I am committed to following my seniors step by step. If there is any word in my writings which contradicts the view of my seniors then regard what I wrote to be incorrect and do not pay any attention to it. (Ma’aarif Shaikh pg.36)