IN THE NAME OF ALLAH, THE BENEFICENT, THE MERCIFUL
MAY THE BLESSINGS OF ALLAH BE UPON PROPHET AND HIS PREGENY
We thank Allah once again for giving us another opportunity to practically demonstrate our love to the Holy Household. Our main objective respected brothers and sisters is to feel the presence of Allah wherever we find ourselves. It is clear what we are, but it is not easy to say we will achieve the aim. It depends on individual effort. Allah is indeed everywhere.
Consider the following to see the manifestations of the presence of Allah in each and every blessed place.
1. You were in a state of non-existence (before this world) who was in need of existence, and then Allah blessed you with the existence.
2. You are now in a state of existence (this world) who is in need of the means of existence – Allah always provides.
3. You will be in a state of looking for the mercy to enter Paradise on the day of Judgement; Allah will be there to provide you with His mercy.
Allah is everywhere and the Glorious Qur’an testifies to that in numerous verses. Some of those verses are as follows:
وَمِنْ ءَايَاتِهِ أَنْ خَلَقَ لَكُم مِنْ أَنفُسِكُمْ أَزْوَاجاً لّـِتَسْكُنُوا إِلَيْهَا
Allah said: “And one of His signs is that He created mates for you from yourselves that you may find rest in them…..” (Rum: 21)
وَمِنْ ءَايَاتِهِ خَلْقُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ وَاخْتِلاَفُ أَلْسِنَتِكُمْ وَأَلْوَانِكُمْ إِنَّ فِي ذَلِكَ لاَيَاتٍ لِلْعَالِمِينَ
Allah said: “And one of His signs is the creation of heavens and the earth and the diversity of your tongues and colors; most surely there are signs in this for the learned” (Rum: 22)
وَمِنْ ءَايَاتِهِ مَنَامُكُم بِالَّيْلِ وَالنَّهَارِ
“And one of His signs is your sleeping and your seeking of His grace by night and by day…” (Rum:23)
There are signs of the presence of Allah in everything and all are manifestations of His Names. We should all aspire to know Him and feel His presence. Aspiration of knowing Allah is greater than all the aspirations we have. We need to fix our inner machines to enable our souls to detect the signals of Allah and go beyond it. We need to do away with bad desires, its forms and causes.
Allah said in the Glorious Qur’an:
فَانظُرْ إِلَي ءَاثَارِ رَحْمَةِ اللَّهِ كَيْفَ يُحْيِ الأَرْضَ بَعْدَ مَوْتِهَآ
“Look then at the signs of Allah’s mercy, how He gives life to the earth after its death……” (30:50).
If our souls are corrected, rectified, we will then feel the presence of Allah’s signs and to feel the presence you have to experience it. We will then become friends to Prophets, the Truthful and Martyrs.
However, all the above cannot be attained until and unless we have self –knowledge. It is reported from beloved Prophet as saying: “whoever knows him/herself will certainly know his/her Lord”. It was reported in the book ‘Misbah Sharia’ that one of the infallible Imams was asked of the real meaning of the sayings of Prophet “Seek knowledge even if it takes you to China”, then Imam replied: “The knowledge in the sayings of the Prophet refers to Self-knowledge.”
The Prophet (PBHF) was asked: “Yaa Rasulallah what is the means to Allah? The Prophet Replied: “Self-Knowledge.” Self-knowledge is of paramount importance. If we do not know ourselves, we will not know Allah; hence we will not be able to detect His signals and feel His presence. Self-knowledge cannot be achieved unless through good conduct and behaviour. Imam Ja’far Sadiq (A.S) has said: “Self-knowledge is not in the heaven to descend to you nor it is in the sea to gush out to you but self- knowledge is in the heart, behave well and it will illuminate.”
Humanity is about self-knowledge. We should try to know ourselves. The whole world is in us and all the beautiful names and attributes of Allah are in us. We are the greatest proofs of Allah on the earth.
Allah created trees and plants in a state of ‘Qiyam’ and it always glorifies Allah, He created livestock in a state of ‘Ruku’ and they always glorify Allah, He created insects in a state of ‘Sujood’ and they also always glorify Allah, He created mountains and stones in a state of ‘Juloos’ and it always glorifies Allah. When He created man, he designed him in such a way that he could make Qiyam, ruku, sujood, juloos as well as giving him the ability to do so when he pleases. Know yourself; you will feel the presence of Allah. Imam Ali (A.S) said: “When Allah created animals, he provided it with desire and anger, provided angels with only intellect, provided man with desire, anger and intellect. If man allows his intellect to control his desire and anger, he becomes superior to angels in the eye of Allah if not, he becomes worse than animals.”
In other words, action without knowledge is of no use and benefit. And the first knowledge is for one to know him/herself. Then he/she will know his/her lord. Allah said in Qur’an:
سَنُرِيهِمْ آيَاتِنَا فِي الْآفَاقِ وَفِي أَنْفُسِهِمْ حَتَّی يَتَبَيَّنَ لَهُمْ أَنَّهُ الْحَقُّ
“We will soon show them Our signs in the Universe and in their own souls, until it will become quite clear to them that it is the truth……” (41:53).
For you to see the signs of Allah you need to activate your insight (Baseera). Prophet (PBHF) said: “The real blind is the one whose insight is not active and not the eyesight.” The blind see nothing except the outward of this world. Allah Ta’ala said in the Glorious Qur’an:
لَمُونَ ظَاهِراً مِنَ الْحَيَاةِ الدُّنْيَا وَهُمْ عَنِ الأَخِرَةِ هُمْ غَافِلُونَ
“They know the outward of this world’s life, but of the hereafter they are absolutely heedless” (Rum: 7).
These people have eyes but they are blind due to lack of insight. Glorious Qur’an describes them as worse than cattle, because animals do not have the human potentials and power. Allah said in Qur’an:
وَلَقَدْ ذَرَأْنَا لِجَهَنَّمَ كَثِيراً مِنَ الْجِنِّ وَالإِنْسِ لَهُمْ قُلُوبٌ لاَيَفْقَهُونَ بِهَا وَلَهُمْ أَعْيُنٌ لاَيُبْصِرُونَ بِهَا وَلَهُمْ ءَاذَانٌ لاَيَسْمَعُونَ بِهَآ اُوْلَئِكَ كَالاَنْعَامِ بَلْ هُمْ أَضَلُّ اُوْلَئِكَ هُمُ الْغَافِلُونَ
“They have hearts with which they do not understand, and they have eyes with which they do not see, and they have ears with which with they do not hear; they are as cattle, nay, they are in worse errors; these are heedless ones (7:179).
In an attempt to activate our insights, the following practical steps are recommended:
- One should intend sincerely to do away with sins be it small or great. (Al-Iqrar)
- One should continue to supervise him/herself to see if he/she lives up to his/her intention or not (Al-Muraqabat)
- One should always judge him/her self based on the intention .(Al-Muhasabat)
I humbly ask Allah to be with us in all our spiritual endeavours.