17 Jun 2019

Informing of One's State and Following the Advices

By - Shaykh Tauqeer Chaudhary (db) Sunday, December 08, 2013

All praise is for Allah ta'ala, and may the blessings of Allah ta'ala be upon our beloved Prophet (peace be upon him). We thank Allah ta'ala for His continuous blessings.

As mentioned previously, that in order to develop oneself, one should take a Shaykh (spiritual guide) and then there are four key things that one has to have in the connection with their Shaykh to get maximum benefit;

1. Love and Trust (Mahabbah)

2. Facilitating him in serving the religion of
Allah ta'ala (Khidmah)

3. Informing him of one’s spiritual state (Ittila’)

4. Following his advices (Ittiba’)

It was mentioned that one has to have complete trust and love for one’s Shaykh, so that there is focus and direction, so that one takes on the advices imparted by the Shaykh into one’s life and not follow his own desires. Also, to create humility, and to get a share in the reward of serving the cause of Allah ta'ala, one should engage in facilitating his Shaykh.

The next principles in this process are called Ittila’ and Ittiba’. Allah ta'ala has established this methodology (sunnah) in the world that you need means in order to accomplish a thing. If you have to quench your thirst, you have to drink water. If you have to get cure, you have to go to a doctor, and get the medicine.

Similarly, if you have to get cure to your spiritual sicknesses, like lust, anger, greed, and arrogance, you have to go to the spiritual doctor, that is a Shaykh. The Prophet (peace be upon him) was sent as a spiritual doctor. Allah ta'ala says in the Quran:

لَقَدْ مَنَّ اللَّهُ عَلَى الْمُؤْمِنِينَ إِذْ بَعَثَ فِيهِمْ رَسُولًا مِّنْ أَنفُسِهِمْ يَتْلُو عَلَيْهِمْ آيَاتِهِ وَيُزَكِّيهِمْ

“Indeed Allah has done a favor on the believers, when he sent to them a messenger from amongst themselves, who recites to them the verses and purifies them (of the spiritual sicknesses) …”

Just like you have to give your history and the symptoms of your diseases to the doctor, you have to tell your personal history and the symptoms of your spiritual sicknesses to the spiritual doctor as well. This process is called Ittila’.

Our mashaikh (spiritual guides) have said that even if Allah ta'ala opens a person’s spiritual sicknesses to them, they will not treat it until it’s told by the patient. And just like a patient of physical diseases may not know as to what is the cause of his sickness, and his chest pain might be because of acid reflux, the patient of spiritual sickness might also not know his real spiritual disease even though the symptoms tell something else. Also, just like it is normally not allowed to open one’s hidden areas to anybody, but they must be shown to the doctor to get the treatment, one’s spiritual issues must not be opened to anyone but must be opened to the spiritual doctor in order to get the spiritual treatment. 

When the case is presented to the doctor, the wise would be the one who would take the advice of the doctor and take the prescribed medicine and stay away from all those things that he has been asked to stay away from. Similarly, to hold onto the prescribed dhikr and to stay away from sins and some other possible things is the key to the spiritual treatment. This is called Ittiba’.

Another important concept in our religion is mashwara (seeking counsel). It is another sunnah that Allah ta'ala wants us to follow in order to get blessings in our decisions. When it is done with one’s Shaykh, who has the religious knowledge and spiritual insight, it brings the blessings of Allah ta'ala in that matter. This is part of Ittiba’. These are the fundamentals of the path of spirituality. Of course, it does not stop here. It is just the start. But every journey starts with a single step and this is step number one in the journey to achieve closeness to Allah ta'ala, complete submission to Him and the success of both the lives. At the end of the day, it’s Allah ta'ala who cures our spiritual sicknesses.

وَلَوْلَا فَضْلُ اللَّهِ عَلَيْكُمْ وَرَحْمَتُهُ مَا زَكَىٰ مِنكُم مِّنْ أَحَدٍ أَبَدًا وَلَٰكِنَّ اللَّهَ يُزَكِّي مَن يَشَاءُ

“If it was the grace and mercy of Allah on you, none of you would have been able to get the purification (from the spiritual sicknesses), but it is Allah who purifies whoever He wishes …” (24:21)

But, we have to take the means, and those means are to hook ourselves up with the teachers of spirituality (Shaykh), as per the order of Allah ta'ala and then follow the principles.

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا اتَّقُوا اللَّهَ وَكُونُوا مَعَ الصَّادِقِينَ

“O you who believe, have taqwa (abstaining from all sins to achieve the state of taqwa) of Allah, and be among the ones who have acquired the state of truthfulness (i.e. inner and outer conformity).

Tauqeer Chaudhary
On behalf of the beautiful students of Nur ul Ilm Academy

Saturday, Dec 8th, 2013 | Safar 5, 1435 H