Dust Under Your Feet

12 November 1986

Q : Please explain about doing zikr without a guide/shaikh.
A : Sometimes when some people try to do zikr on their own, that is, without the permission (Ijazat) of a regular Shaikh, it reacts on them badly and they feel some muscular contraction on their face. I have said definitely in my books, and all the spiritual guides say this, that one should not act upon books and starts reciting zikr as prescribed in the books. Its reaction is sometimes bad and one suffers mentally and bodily. There is no harm in saying salat, fasting and reciting aurad mentioned in the Quran and Hadis of Prophet (S). But other spiritual exercises such as zikr and muraqbah etc, they should not be done without regular permission of a Shaikh-al-Kamil.To make spiritual progress possible and speedy one has to become a murid of some Shaikh-al-Kamil who is able to diagnose the spiritual diseases and prescribe proper zikr etc for treatment.It is very necessary for spiritual progress.Infact, you cannot move forward without a proper guide who has been himself through this journey.This is why the zikr done without the Shaikh’s permission proves, sometimes, to be more injurious than useful.

Q : What to look for when selecting a shaikh?  
A : The signs and conditions of a Shaikh are that:  
( 1 ) He should have knowledge of Islam 
( 2 ) He should have been a murid of a regular Shaikh 
( 3 ) He should have gone through the spiritual course and reached the stages of Fana-fi-Allah and Baqa-bi-Allah ( 4 ) He should always be within Shariat, that is, his actions should not be against Shariat 
( 5 )Another sign of the real Shaikh is that one should see his murids and see if they are progressing or not 
( 6 ) Yet another sign is that when you talk to him (Shaikh), you feel some spiritual elevation. 
One should act on these suggestions and first find out some suitable Shaikh. With regards to age, 30 or 40 years of age is a good age to start spiritual work.


Q : Explain what is Ruh, Nafs and Qalb ?  
A : In this connection, you should see my Islamic Sufism in which it has been stated in chapter 3 (on the Greatness of Man), that like the six bodily senses (hearing, seeing, smelling, tasting, touching and the six hidden sense), the human soul also has six senses known as LATAIF-I-SITTA. Their location in the human has also been given in the book along with the colour of their lights. So when the strokes of zikr Ilahi are given on these Lataif or spiritual centers, they are illuminated and rejuvenated and thus the entire body is enlightened, and man is able to fly upwards (spiritually not physically) into the regions of Qurb (nearness or presence of the Almighty). Nafs, Qalb and Ruh are three spiritual centers. The remaining three are known as Sir (secret), Khafi (hidden) and Akfa (hidden most). In order to illuminate them, there are various kinds of zikr and spiritual exercises known as Ashghal and Muraqbat. Spiritualism is a perfect science by which the upwards journey is completed and nearness of God achieved.


Q : Briefly,how about Shaitan mischief on man?
A : Now, how Shaitan (satan) works? He has the power to enter into human body like blood and poison the heart. Sometimes, he sits behind the left shoulder and injects bad ideas into the heart with his long sting like nose. But he is unable to spoil one who is fortified by the fort of zikr etc.