Articles & Newsletters

Islam & Sufism

Articles & Newsletters

 

 

Al-Fattāh: The Opener

Fataha is from the root meaning, to open; to turn on; to conquer; to reveal; to grant a mercy or victory. Surat al-Fātihah opens the Qur’an; Miftāh is a key. Khayr al-Fātihīn: The Best of Openers (7:89).

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'You' Are The Outer And The Inner

The main three realms of unity relate to the zones of action, attribute and essence. Action and manifestation are based on causality, reasoning and intellect. The reflective believer will soon discover that all experiences are balanced by their opposites. There is no pleasure without displeasure, no health without illness, and the root of these realities lies in their opposite. Higher attributes reflect the divine qualities and are most desirable for us as they are doors to inner happiness. Essence is the indiscernible and hidden root - the Light of lights. When one is illumined, the state of excellence (ihsān) is experienced and tasted. Then the All-Merciful appears and you will see His light in every situation.

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Withdrawal And Drawing Near

The divinely revealed tradition:

"My servant does not draw near to Me with anything more beloved than by way of the obligations which I have ordained for him. He may draw near to me with additional actions (nawafil) if I love him. If I love him I become his hearing by which he hears and the sight by which he sees. I become the tongue by which he speaks and his hand with which he grasps. If he asks me in prayer I will answer him, and if he beseeches Me I will grant it to him."

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Knowledge Already Exists Within

Man's purpose is to dispel ignorance. Knowledge already exists within. Knowledge is from Allah's Attribute of al-'Alīm, the Knower. This Attribute is never absent, so one's task is simply to strip away ignorance. Divine knowledge (al-'ilm al-ladunī) is already within us, and to arrive at it we must learn prescriptive outer knowledge and proper courtesy, which are all based on the prophetic practices of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).

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