O

THE MURSHID

AND THE MUREED

  

By

 

Moulana Abdun Nabi Hamidi

  

PUBLISHED BY

IMAM AHMED RAZA ACADEMY

DURBAN SOUTH AFRICA

 

A BARAKAATUR RAZA PUBLICATION

COPYRIGHT RESERVED

 Date of Publication: Rajab 1422 A.H. (October 2001)

Number of copies: 1 500

 

Publishers:

Imam Ahmed Raza Academy

Ahmed Raza Building

3rd Floor, 20-22 Lorne Street

Durban. 4001

South Africa

 

Postal Address:

P.O. Box 5325

Durban. 4000

South Africa

 

Phone: (031) 309-3642

Fax: (031) 309-3707

Cell: 083-988-6554

Int. Code: (27) (31) + Number

 

Web Site: www.raza.co.za

e-mail: yunusraza@hotmail.com

ISBN: 0-9584436-8-8

 

PREFACE

 

Today, false Sufis have emerged in many parts of the world and in our very own environment. These “pseudo-Sufis”, with what little knowledge, if any, of the Deen that they possess and of the Spiritualism, prey on the ignorant by revealing the “secrets” of the common people, or dressing in false garbs of piety, have thoroughly destroyed the true meaning of Tasawwuf. They command people to become their Mureeds and act as true spiritual guides when their every actions are not even in conformity with the Sharee’ah. The unwary masses, totally ignorant of their reality, begin to follow them and become so attached that they themselves fail to recognise Truth from Falsehood.

 

Tasawwuf is a branch of Islamic knowledge that is not readily understood nor appreciated by the masses. The need for its explanation in simple language is, therefore, an urgent need. This book fulfils this need adequately for the aspiring, enquiring mind.

 

The meaning of Tasawwuf is clearly defined in this book. Who is a Murshid (spiritual guide), his innate qualities and his duties towards his Mureeds (disciples) is discussed. The relationship between Murshid and Mureed is clearly illustrated. The two types of Murshids is explained. The meaning and types of Bay’ah is also discussed.

 

By writing this book, Moulana Abdun Nabi Hamidi has done a great service to Spiritualism. This inspiring and informative book is a must for every Mureed and intending Mureeds because it explains in simple terms the various principles involved in this relationship between Murshid and Mureed. The ultimate goal of this relationship is to inculcate love in the heart of the Mureed for his of her Murshid, which would, through spiritual exercise and perseverance lead to love for Rasoolullah r and for Allah Y. If the intention of every Muslim is to attain the Pleasure of Allah Y, then love for the Holy Prophet r and Allah Y is an important pre-requisite towards the attainment of this Pleasure.

 

May Allah Y, the Creator and Sustainer of all the Universes cleanse our hearts of all its materialism and illuminate it with the love for the Holy Prophet r and Allah Y Himself. Aameen. May Allah Y, the Most Compassionate, make it easy for all of us. Aameen.

 

Sayed Mohammed Habeeb Chisti

(Educationist and former Lecturer)

11 Rajab 1422 A.H.

29 September 2001

 

FOREWORD

 

All Praise is due to Almighty Allah Y, Peace and Salutations upon our beloved Prophet Hadrat Muhammad r, his noble Companions t and his exalted Family t.

 

Almighty Allah Y states in the Holy Quran: “Undoubtedly, he attained to his goal who purified”. (Al-A’la: 14)

 

The body and the soul together make up a complete person. While the body belongs to this world, the soul’s origin is the realm of Divine Power. Almighty Allah Y by His Divine Power has united them and made provisions for their growth. Just as Almighty Allah Y has provided various foods for the nourishment of the body, He Y has also provided sustenance for the soul. This vital sustenance, which invigorates the soul, is the Remembrance of Almighty Allah Y.

 

At times the body is prone to ailments, the cure of which is available in various medicines. The soul also falls ill in which case Almighty Allah Y has provided remedies. Doctors treat the body at times of illness and Friends of Almighty Allah t are healers of the soul. As we consult doctors for our physical ailments, we should consult the Awliya Allah t for our spiritual ailments.

 

The body and the soul each have their particular impurities. Impurities of the body are urine, faeces, pus, and so forth. Similarly, impurities of the soul are lying, cheating, polytheism (associating partners with Almighty Allah Y), and any other activities that is against the Sharee’ah (Islamic Law). Just as we dislike any filth to defile our bodies and if this happens we immediately remove it, it is incumbent on every Muslim to cleanse and purify his soul from any impurities. The impurities of the body are cleansed with water, and the water to cleanse the soul is sincere repentance. The tear of a repenter purges his soul and cleanses his heart.

 

Almighty Allah Y declares: “Undoubtedly, he attained to his goal who is purified”. The cleanliness and purity intended in this Ayah is of a comprehensive and inclusive nature. Hence, Islam calls us to physical as well as spiritual and mental cleanliness; both outer and inner cleanliness. To realise this complete purity in a balanced manner, Islam offers comprehensive guidelines. Other religions lack this balance and symmetry found in Islam. Some religions focus only on the mind and neglect the physical dimension. However, the heart, mind and body are so interwoven that they mutually affect each other. Hence, purification of the body affects the purity of the mind and heart. In the light of this, the Holy Quran teaches: “Glorify your Lord and keep your garments clean.” (Mudaththir: 4-5). The Holy Prophet r informs us that cleanliness is part of faith (Mishkaat, Book of Cleanliness, Chapter 1).

 

To attain purity of the soul one needs knowledge relevant to this purity. This particular knowledge is the science of Tasawwuf, which is the faculties governing the conduct of the Murshid (spiritual guide) and the Mureed (disciple), and the knowledge and practice of Awraad (special prayers).

 

Moulana Abdun Nabi Hamidi

Imam of Sultan Bahu Juma Masjid

Mayfair. Johannesburg

 

O

WHAT IS TASAWWUF

 

Tasawwuf is the concept, which embodies the purification of the heart by sincerely, and obediently practising the lifestyle of the Holy Prophet r  in all spheres of his life.

 

Hadrat Sheikh Data Ganj Bakhsh Ali Hajweri t (400-465 A.H.) narrates from Hadrat Murtaish t. “Tasawwuf is refined character. This refined character may be attained in three ways: Firstly, to obey the commandments of Almighty Allah Y and his Rasool r with utmost sincerity. Secondly, to respect all those senior to us in age, knowledge and piety; love the young; observe justice at all times and not to expect any return for our good actions. Thirdly, to avoid all evil desires and Satanic attractions. By complying to the aforementioned regulations one attains piety.” (Kashful Mahjoob, pg. 106)

 

SUPPORTING THE CAUSE OF TASAWWUF

 

Those who have devoted themselves completely to the service of Almighty Allah Y do not even bother to obtain a means of substance. Such people are being provided with financial help from anonymous sources. These pious people do not have hopes of material gain from people. They have complete trust in Almighty Allah Y. When they receive some gift from the public, they receive it with the Niyyah (intention) that Almighty Allah Y is the Giver and the donor is the means. To be of any assistance to such people is actually to do good to us.

 

Ghausul A’zam, Sayyiduna Sheikh Abdul Qaadir Jilani t states that Nabi r has recommended giving food to ascetics and pious persons and giving clothing to the Believers.  By assisting such a person with worldly necessities we minimize his burden and enable him to devote himself completely to Almighty Allah Y. In this way, we will receive the reward of his good deeds since we have provided him with necessary physical nourishment and helped him furthering the cause of Almighty Allah Y. (Al-Fat’hur Rabbani, pg. 192)

 

The general public at times presents Mashaa’ikh and Ulama with gifts. This is a good practice as it frees them from worldly trivialities, enabling them to dedicate themselves fully in the work of Almighty Allah Y.

 

However, there are fraudulent persons amongst the Ulama and Mashaa’ikh who are involved in sinful deeds and practice acts refuted by the Sharee’ah. These people should not be given assistance or gifts since it makes the donor, if he is aware of the nature of such a person, an accomplice to the sin.  The onus lies on the public to exercise discretion and judgement and decide if the person is deserving of any form of assistance.

 

CATEGORIES OF AHLUS SAFA (PEOPLE OF PURITY)

 

“People of Purity”, also known as “Ahlus Safa”, are characterised as follows:-

 

1. SUFI: Sufi is that person who has overcome his self-ego as well as all human weaknesses, whilst at the same time being aware of the reality of all existence. Truth is the hallmark of his life. The term Sufi refers to an established and completely realised Wali Allah t (Friend of Almighty Allah Y). In “Kashful Mahjoob” a Sheikh is quoted as saying “one who is emerged in the friendship of Almighty Allah Y and has freed himself from all other than Almighty Allah Y, is a Sufi”. (Kashful Mahjoob, pg.97)

 

Ghausul A’zam, Hadrat Sheikh Abdul Qaadir Jilani t explains that until a person has not reached the rank where he is graced by the vision of Nabi Muhammad r in his dream and is given commands and prohibitions, he cannot be regarded as a Sufi. If this fortunate incident does occur, then his heart gains promotion and his innermost being is cleansed and he attains the proximity of Almighty Allah Y while his hands are in the hands of Nabi Muhammad t. (Al Fath-ur-Rabbani, pg. 389)

 

2. MUTASAWWIF: One who is striving to attain the status of a Sufi through Mujahidah (Continuous struggle against evil desires). He follows the examples of the Sufis to better himself.

 

3. MUSTASWIF: One who impersonates a Sufi for monetary gain, power, and worldly honour. He does not have any of the qualities of the Sufi or Mustasawwif. (Kashful Mahjoob, pg. 98)

 

THE NECESSITY FOR A MURSHID

 

If a person wants to learn any art form or gain knowledge/science he will seek help from an expert in that field. Knowledge of Almighty Allah ’s Y Zaat (Being) is the most difficult secret in the universe. It can only be achieved with the help of its experts, the Awliya Allah t. Only these people can be accepted as Murshids (guides). The following quotation defines the need and guidance of a Murshid.

 

Ghausul A’zam, Hadrat Sheikh Abdul Qaadir Jilani t brings home the necessity of a Murshid in a beautiful metaphor. He says: “The heart is the plantation for the Aakhirah (Hereafter). Sow the seeds of Imaan in your heart. Irrigate, fertilise and mature it with regular good deeds. If there is kindness and energy in the heart it will be fertile and an abundant harvest will result. Should the heart be harsh and contemptuous, the soul becomes infertile and barren and no crop will be able to grow. Learn this art of farming by its farmers/experts, the Awliya Allah t. Do not think your opinion to be sufficient. Our Prophet r says, ‘Seek help in every field from an expert in that field’”. (Al-Fath-ur-Rabbani, pg. 202)

 

Ghausul A’zam t said: “Arrogance, hypocrisy, egoism, are all arrows of Shaytaan aimed at your hearts. One should formulate a strategy to defend oneself from this attack. The correct strategies are explained and demonstrated by the Mashaa’ikh (Guides). You should heed to their commands and act on them. They will guide you on the path of Almighty Allah Y since they have already travelled on this path. Ask their advise on matters relating to the Nafs (carnal desires), cravings and other weaknesses because they have also suffered their consequences and are well aware of the dangers and harms of evil desires. They have battled these over a long period of time and can confront, control and defeat them”. (Al-Fath-ur-Rabbani, pg. 150)

 

SEARCHING FOR A MURSHID

 

Ghaus-ul A’zam t says: “If a person is unable to differentiate between a true and false Murshid, he should read 2 Rakaats Nafil for achieving recognition of Almighty Allah Y at Tahajjud time. Then he should ask Almighty Allah Y to inform him of those pious people who will be able to guide him on the Right Path. He should beseech Almighty Allah Y to show him the person who will intoxicate him with Almighty Allah’s Y love and adorn the eyes of his heart with the light of Almighty Allah’s Y closeness and inform him of unseen happenings that he personally witnessed”. (Insha-Allah by doing so, one will receive the answer)(Al-Fath-ur Rabbani, pg.146)

 

If someone is unable to do this then he should seek the advise of a well versed Sunni Aalim. At times, people take advice from the ignorant and become Mureeds of Shaytaan. May Almighty Allah Y protect us all. Aameen.

 

THE MURSHID AND HIS COMMITMENT TO SHAREE’AH

 

The Murshid is obligated to follow the commands of Sharee’ah with absolute respect and dedication. The role of the Murshid is to enlighten the path of those who are astray with righteousness and guidance. A “Murshid” who does not respect and follow the Sharee’ah is himself in darkness and totally incapable of illuminating (rating someone else’s path or guiding them). Such people are disciples of Shaytaan and the enemies of Islam. Some Murshids go about sowing doubts in the minds of their followers. They teach that Salaah and Saum (Fasting) are outward forms of worship and should be left to the Ulama. They claim that they practice and worship with their hearts only. Such Mushids are astray and mislead their followers too. They feast in Ramadaan openly mocking the Sharee’ah and Tareeqah. Yet, ignorant Mureeds are convinced that these people will transport them into Jannah. It is strange that bodily requirements like eating, drinking, sleeping, taking medication and other physical activities are done promptly.  It is only those physical duties commanded by Almighty Allah Y and Nabi r that strain their bodies and they choose to perform it with their heart. Why do they not perform other functions like eating and drinking with the heart? “True Saints only feel hungry once in forty days”. (Kashful Mahjoob, pg. 444)

 

It should be remembered that Nabi r, his Noble Companions t, the Tabi’in t, Taba Tabi’in t, the true Saints t, and the Allah-fearing people never performed such “hearty” Salaah or Saum. These are physical forms of Ibadah, which have to be performed bodily. They should be performed not just with the heart; they should be carried with the heart and mind completely engrossed in Almighty Allah’s Y worship.

 

Hadrat Umar Farooq t demonstrated the importance of Salaah when he was fatally wounded by Abu Lulu. He performed Fajr Salaah even though bleeding profusely and said that those who do not perform Salaah have no part in Islam. (Izaalatul Khifaa, Vol. 4, pg. 281)

 

Some “Murshids” deny the Absolute Unity and Oneness of Almighty Allah Y (Tauheed). They believe Nabi r to be the “Lord” and regard this as the supreme secret of Tasawwuf. To justify their evil beliefs, they misuse terms like “Anal Haq” which is sometimes uttered by Saints in a state of spiritual intoxication. (The nature of the “Anal Haq” phrase will be explained later on.)

 

When the Ulema-e-Haq challenge such blasphemous claims, these fraudulent “Murshids” hide behind false claims that the Ulama are mere followers of Sharee’ah and un-informed of inner knowledge. To protect their fraudulent practices, they instruct their Mureeds not to publicise their teachings because others would not understand the finer points and implications of this so-called “inner knowledge”. They do this so that they may not be exposed. They also keep their Mureeds away from the Ulama so that the Mureeds must not become aware of their tricks and their means of income is not terminated.

Sultaanul Aarifeen, Hadrat Sultaan Bahu t affirms that when a person steps in the area of Tasawwuf (Durwesh-hood) he should diligently follow the demands of the Sharee’ah. He should follow the teachings of the Holy Quran and Sunnah at every step and he should keep the company of the Ulama and Fuqara. He should only do those things advised by the Sharee’ah and refrain from those actions that are prohibited by the Sharee’ah. He should not allow either carnal desires or evil temptation to influence him. (Mihakul Foqaraa, pg. 93)

 

Hadrat Data Ganj Bakhsh Ali Hujweri t writes: “A group of heretics have joined the Sufis. They preach that once obedience to Sharee’ah is intensified to such an extent that Wilaayah (Sainthood) is achieved, Ta’at (obedience to the Laws of Sharee’ah) is no longer necessary.  This is an incorrect and false claim. In the path of truth, there is absolutely no stage where Ta’at becomes redundant”. (Kashful Mahjoob, pg. 312)

 

Hadrat Data Saahib t emphasizes that to achieve Wilaayat, the compliance to the Sunnah of Nabi r is definitely required. (Kashful Mahjoob, pg. 455)

 

Hadrat Data Ganj Baksh t explains the relationship of Haqiqah and Shari’ah as follows: “Sharee’ah without Haqeeqah is a farce and show and Haqeeqah without Sharee’ah is hypocrisy. Pretence and hypocrisy are both the ruination of Imaan. Almighty Allah Y says: ‘Whoever exhibits Mujahidah (continuous striving) towards us, We will show them Our path’. Mujahidah is Sharee’ah and guidance towards the path of Almighty Allah Y is Haqeeqah. Sharee’ah functions to protect the outward and Haqeeqah guards the inner conditions of the Believer”. (Kashful Mahjoob, pg. 526)

 

One should note that Sharee’ah is established on the firm foundation of Quran, Sunnah, Consensus and analogy of the Jurists. If a person disputes any particular analogical Mas’ala and is equipped with substantiating evidence, then the matter is not so serious. However, when a person openly defies the Quran, Hadith and ‘Ijma (consensus), he not only gives up any claim to being a Murshid, but of also being a Muslim.

EXPECTATIONS THAT A MUREED SHOULD HAVE IN HIS RELATIONSHIP WITH THE MURSHID

 

Some people become Mureeds hoping for financial prosperity, release from the worldly hardships and living a comfortable life. At times, the Awliya Allah t bless their Mureeds with worldly favours. The Mureed should avoid worldly motives and take Bay’ah (pledge allegiance) solely to attain Almighty Allah ’s Y Marifah, cure the soul and express true repentance. He should have the pure intention of complete obedience to Almighty Allah Y  and the Holy Prophet Muhammad r.

 

THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A COMPETENT AND

AN INCOMPETENT MURSHID

 

Sultaanul Fuqara, Hadrat Faqir Nur Muhammed Sarwari Qaadri t, defines a perfect Sheikh as one who discards the Nafs (carnal desires), purifies the soul and cleanses the mind of his Mureed for the sole purpose of guiding his disciple on the correct path and delivering him to Almighty Allah Y. A perfect Murshid does not attain worldly gain.

 

A false Sheikh takes Mureeds so that his worldly status is boosted. The Mureed gives his hard-earned income to his Murshid who lives a luxurious lifestyle, which cannot even be afforded by the affluent people. These “heavens-marketers” have furnished their homes with the trappings of Hell and have become the Fuel of Hell.

 

A disciple must first evaluate the Murshid in the context of worldly transactions. As soon as he is convinced of a selfish or worldly motive he should immediately disassociate himself from such a Murshid. The Murshid should not claim his status because of lineage, rather, he should have been under training of a perfect Sheikh and practiced upon the spiritual exercises, travelled the inner paths and be well versed with all the stages of spiritual progress.  Acquainting oneself with books of Tasawwuf or attaining superficial knowledge of Jurisprudence or logic or being born in the household of a pious person or claiming Khilaafat (permission to take Bay’ah) from a false Murshid does not qualify one as a Murshid. One cannot hope for any guidance (Hidayah) or grace (Faiz) from such a false Murshid. Unfortunately, these pretentious Murshids roam our streets in abundance causing mayhem and chaos. May Almighty Allah Y grant Hidayah to these customary Sheikhs (Peers) and bless the Mureeds with better judgement. (Irfaan, pg. 326)

 

THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN THE MUREED AND

THE MURSHID

 

  1. The Mureed should not harbour any objections against the Murshid. This would cause the Mureed destruction if the Mureed has some doubt about the Murshid. He should keep in mind the example of Hadrat Khidr u because he did things that were apparently quite objectionable, for example, making a hole in the boat belonging to poor people and taking the life of an innocent child. It later became apparent that these actions were justifiable. Similarly, the Mureed should be convinced that even if some of the Murshid’s deeds do not seem appropriate, the Murshid knows better and he has justifiable reasons for his actions.

 

  1. The Mureeds will not benefit from his Murshid unless he (the Mureed) is convinced that from all the Saints of the time, his Murshid is most advantageous to him.

 

  1. One should become a Mureed for the sole purpose of purifying one’s heart. To achieve Faiz (Grace) from one’s Murshid, one’s intentions and heart must be clear.

 

  1. If a fellow Mureed gains more spiritual benefit from the Murshid then one must not envy or grudge him. This will lead him or her to Jahannam. Almighty Allah Y endowed Nabi Adam u with such a high status that he asked all the Angles to prostrate to him. Shaytaan, due to his jealousy refused and was thrown into Jahannam. If someone has more worldly possessions than ourselves, we should be thankful that we have fewer burdens than him.  If someone is greater than you spiritually, you should recognise his greatness by reverence. Envy is actually an affront to Almighty Allah Y Who has given him more grace.
  2. All doubts and hesitations must be revealed to the Murshid because the Murshid is a spiritual healer. To conceal any illness from the doctor (healer) would result in self-destruction.

 

  1. It is incumbent upon the Mureed to regard his Murshid with utmost respect and reverence. If one attends the Majlis (gathering) of his Murshid, but does not really respect him, he will be punished. Almighty Allah Y will render the heart of such a person devoid of truth and he will becomes oblivious of Almighty Allah Y. According to some Saints t, it is said that when a Mureed is disrespectful towards his Murshid, then the Noor (light) of Emaan (Faith) is snatched away from him.

 

  1. It is recommended that the Mureed kiss the Murshid’s hands, feet, hair, clothing, etc. The Ahaadith and the conduct of the Noble Companions t support this practice. Hadrat Zar’ah t, who was from the delegation of Abdul Qais narrates: “When we arrived in Madina we hurried from our transport so that we could kiss Nabi’s r feet and hands”. (Mishkaatul Masaabih, Babul Musafaha Wal Muaanaqa, Second Section)

 

  1. A Mureed should not expect to see any miracles from his Murshid. Diligent obedience/observance of the Sharee’ah and his continuous authentic Silsila (chain) is a sufficient requirements for the Murshid. Karaamat is not a precondition for Wilaayat.

 

  1. The Mureed should be like a deceased in front of his Murshid. As a lifeless person is completely at the mercy of those performing his bath/Ghusal, so should the Mureed place himself before the Murshid. The Murshid has to guide his disciple through the thorny path of Tareeqah. If the Mureed is “alive” he is actually interfering in the tasks of the Murshid.

 

  1. When the Mureed is in the company of his Murshid, he should maintain an order similar to that when one is amongst sharks and beasts. The Mureed must not look at the poverty of the Murshid or think low of his lineage. He must not doubt the Ibadah (worhsips) of the Murshid since he cannot see the heart of the Murshid or cross any limitation set by the Murshid. (Al Fathur Rabbani, pg.411)

 

  1. In Tareeqah, it is necessary that the Mureed conduct himself with his Murshid in the most dignified manner. Then only will he gain the benefit of the Murshid’s attention. If the Mureed is enriched either in knowledge or spiritually he must not credit himself, but accept it as the Murshid’s grace (Faiz).

 

  1. The Mureed must strive to achieve the status of “Fana-Fish Sheikh” or immersing oneself into the Sheikh. A’la Hadrat, Imam Ahmed Raza t has explained the way to achieve this. He said: “The Mureed must imagine the Murshid in front of him and place his heart below the Murshid’s heart. He must imagine that Faiz (grace) and Barakah (blessing) is flowing from Nabi r into the Murshid’s heart and then flowing into his own heart.  After a while he will see his Sheikh’s image everywhere.  It will not disappear; even at the times of Salaah the Mureed will always find the Sheikh with him”. (Malfoozaat A’la Hadrat, pg. 169)

 

  1. The daily Wazaa’if (special prayers) prescribed by the Murshid must be read diligently and the Mureed must not object to anything the Murshid has advised. As far the rest of the Sharee’ah Laws are concerned, he (Mureed) may learn them from any Ahlul Fatwa Sunni Aalim. In fact, these commandments can be learnt from any Murshid. The Murshid too can learn from any Aalim, from another Murshid or from his own Mureed.

 

  1. After pledging allegiance (Bay’ah) with a Murshid, the Mureed can only change the Bay’ah if he finds any Shari’ faults in his Murshid. However, renewal of Bay’ah with his Murshid or Bai’t-e-Taalab (becoming any Sheikh’s student while having one’s own Sheikh) with any Murshid is permissible. Sheikh Ibnul Arabi said: “Just as the world is not between two Gods, the Mukallaf (duty bound with Shar’i laws) is not between two different Sharee’ah of two Rasools. A wife is not between two husbands. A Mureed cannot be between two Sheikhs (Murshids) as well”.

 

  1. If the Murshid commands the Mureeds to disobey the Sharee’ah, for example, not to read Salaah, or not to fast, or if he tries to diminish the important of the Sharee’ah and its practices, the Mureed should immediately disassociate from such a Murshid. The Mureed does not even need to consult anyone prior to his disassociation from such a false Murshid.

 

  1. After the Murshid’s demise, the Mureed should visit the Qabr (grave) of the Murshid and conduct himself in the following manner. He should stand four hand lengths away from the grave facing it with one’s back towards the Qibla and read Fateha. He must be just as respectful as he was prior to the demise of the Murshid. He must enter the Mazaar from the front. He must visualise the Murshid’s face and visualise that the Murshid is seated in front of him. Keep in mind that the Faiz (grace) received previously is being received now too, since a Wali is alive and transmits grace even after his demise. This reality is explained by Ghausul Aa’zam t who said: “Those remembering Almighty Allah  Y are eternally alive. They merely pass from one life to another and except for one moment, they do not die. Their death is a formality which is fulfilled by Almighty Allah Y”. (Al-Fathur Rabbani, pg.93)

 

  1. The Mureed should always conduct himself ethically and morally. A Mureed is a reflection on his Murshid. If a Mureed is a sinner, people will cast doubt and unwarranted suspicion on the Murshid.

 

  1. The Mureed should always respect the Sheikh, his family and friends.  Such (civil) conduct is pleasing to the Sheikh. True lover even respects everything related to the beloved.

 

  1. In the gathering of the Murshid, the Mureed must sit with respect. He should not sit at a place higher than the Murshid or raise his voice above that of the Sheikh. He must avoid unnecessary chatter and queries. He must listen attentively when the Murshid speaks and spread the message amongst others. He should also seek advice from the Murshid.

 

  1. When the Murshid is a guest of a Mureed, the Mureed should not take him to visit worldly people or engage the Murshid in hosting others.  If there is an Aalim, Murshid or Islamic organisation present in the city the Murshid should be taken to visit them if he is willing.

 

21.   A Mureed must not speak ill of other Murshids, as it may invoke the Mureeds of the other Murshid to retaliate. This is not a practice of Islam.

 

THE ONE WITHOUT A MURSHID HAS SHAITAAN

AS ONE’S MURSHID

 

Murshids are two types:

  1. Murshid Aam (General Guide,) and
  2. Murshid Khaas (Specific Guide)

The Murshids Khaas comprises of the Sheikhul Ittisaal and the Sheikhul Isaal.

 

The Murshid Aam comprises of the Quran, Hadith, the writings of the Jurists, the Murshids, authorities of Tasawwuf, the writings of the scholars, and the writings of the people of guidance and righteousness. The guide of the general public is the Kalaam (Speech and Writings) of the Scholars. The guide of the Ulama or Scholars is the writings of the Imams t of Fiqh. The guide of Imams t of Fiqh is the Sunnah and Hadith of Nabi r. The guide of the Holy Prophet r is the Quran/Speech/Revelation of Almighty Allah Y.

 

From this it can be seen that the Murshid Aam is an absolute necessity. A person without guidance of both the Murshids, i.e. Khaas and Aam is under the reign of Shaytaan.  It is in this sense that A’la Hadrat, Moulana Ahmed Raza Khan Bareilwi t writes that Sayyiduna Baayazid Bustaami’s t declaration in “Awaariful Ma’arif” that those without a Murshid (Khaas and Aam) have Shaytaan as their guide. (Fatawa Afriqa, pg.124)

 

TWELVE SECTS TO BE AVOIDED

 

A’la Hadrat Imam Ahmad Raza Khan Bareilwi t has identified 12 cults which have Shaytaan as their Murshid.  Muslims should avoid such groups, as taking guidance from them will invite the Wrath of Almighty Allah Y. The Cults identified by A’la Hadrat t are:

 

1. The evil jesters who mock the Ulama and jeer at the teachings of the Sharee’ah. They (falsely) claim that the Ulama and the Fuqara have always been at odds with each other. These ignorant idiots cast doubts over the most eminent Ulama and question their integrity. They slander them by calling them (Ulama) “pundits” and say that the Ulama should exhibit/perform miracles like those of the Prophets of Bani Israel u.

 

2. Heretics who are self-proclaimed Faqeers and Walis (Saints). They claim that Sharee’ah is a path, which is no longer needed once the destination is reached.

 

3. Those who are actually unlettered, uncultivated and uneducated. They skim through a few books and feign to be most knowledgeable. They disregard the Imams of Fiqh like Imam Abu Hanifa t, Imam Shafi’I t … and consider themselves more learned than them and find faults with their rulings and decrees. They consider themselves greater scholars of the Quran and Hadith than the Imams t. Such persons are misguided - Ghair Muqallids.

 

4. Worse than the first three cults are those who believe in the Book “Taqwi’atul Imaan” by Ismail Dehlawi and have turned their backs on the Quran and the Hadith. According to their principles and beliefs contained in the afore-mentioned text, even Almighty Allah