“All praise belongs to Allah. All praise belongs to Allah, the Generous, He Who when He threatens, pardons, and when He promises, keeps His word. The Bountiful, He Who gives without being asked and gives without measure; Who rewards in abundance; Who gives without count; Who calls His beloved ones to the precincts of nearness and ignites their longing for that High and Majestic Presence.
He calls out every night in the last third of the night, “Is there any seeker of forgiveness at all? Is there any penitent whatsoever? Is there anyone in need at all so that I may fulfil his need?” He calls out at every breath and at every second that the doors of approaching Him are open, His gifts to those who are sincere are available, and His benefactions to those who lie in wait, obtainable. He has created us so that we may profit from Him and not so that He may profit from us.
What great success awaits those who yearn for His presence and seek the path of those beloved to Him. We bear witness that He is Allah, there is no deity but He, alone and without partner; a witnessing through which the door to approaching Him will open to the hearts, and such that the souls will be animated by the essence of yearning for Him, and footholds will be made firm on the adab (proprieties) due in His presence.
And we bear witness that our sayyid (‘refuge in times of crises’) and our mawla, Prophet Muhammad SAW, he who combines all that is worthy of praise, is His Servant, His Envoy, His Beloved, His Chosen One and His Intimate Friend, whom Allah has appointed as the gate to Him – the landmark that guides to Him. There is therefore no other path that will lead to the rank of belovedness in the presence of the Creator except cleaving closely to the footsteps of the Prophet: “Say: If you do indeed love Allah, then follow me, you will be beloved of Allah.” Surah al-Imran 3:31.
It is this path – that of invoking blessings and peace upon the most beautiful beloved, the most high, the most sublime – that is indeed intended by the phrase ‘approaching Allah’, and the quest for a special ‘nearness’ to Allah. It is a quest that many people in our times have shunned, preoccupying themselves instead with that which does not merit preoccupation, and enterprises which are profitless. The tacky adornments of life and its shoddy decorations have captured them, and consequently they have turned their backs on the essence of happiness, and al-husnaa , namely the Garden, and al-ziyaadah, namely gazing at Allah’s Noble Countenance. People have become content with this bankruptcy while days and nights pass them by, and so they fail to seek the essence of proximity to Allah SWT. ”
Habib Ali Zain Al-Abideen Al-Jifri
To be continued…