Dust Under Your Feet

17 February 1986

Q: Could you please explain about the Miraj (Ascension) of our Noble Prophet (pbuh).

A: The Miraj of our Noble Prophet (pbuh) was not spiritual because spiritual Miraj has been reached by all the Aulia Allah. Miraj of the Holy Prophet (pbuh) was physical. But not in this physical body. It was another kind of body. You know when the Prophets and Saints reach the highest degree of nearness their physical bodies also are spiritualized or etherealized. That is why they can go without food and drink for long time (days, weeks, months). As regards the merits of Miraj, you should know that it was the greatest honour for the greatest Prophet to have been vouchsafed the unique distinction of reaching the Divine presence with his corporeal self which no other Prophet enjoyed. I have explained the significance of physical Miraj in a book which I will tell you at a subsequent stage, not now, because it is difficult to understand in the initial stages of suluk (journey). I can say this much at present that it is very, very difficult to approach the Almighty’s nearness physically. Even the angels who have no physical bodies cannot go anywhere near the Divine Lord. When the greatest of the angel, Gibrail, accompanied the Holy Prophet (pbuh) during Miraj, he had to part company and stop at Sidratul Muntaha. When the Holy Peophet (pbuh) asked him to come along, he replied:

“ If I go a hair’s breath forward my wings would be burnt.”
Sidratul Muntaha is not very high. It is only the end of this cosmos and beginning of the realm of Divinity. But the extent of the Prophet’s journey beyond Sidratul Muntaha was much more. It cannot be imagined.


Q: Every male or female expresses their true, real love to one another. They genuinely fall in love with human beauty. Please explain what is true, real love?
A: The thing is that every man or woman has love in his or her heart, and that love is by nature with the Divine Beloved. He or she does not know it, and goes on wandering and running after physical beauty thinking that it is his or her object. But in reality human beauty is not his or her object. It is the Divine Beauty which drags him or her on and on. Once an Englishman who was interested in Islam came to Pakistan. He had not yet embraced Islam. He said to me:
“ I have a craving in my heart which is dragging me here and there. But I do not know what it is for. There is nothing in the world which I cannot purchase by money to satisfy that craving. I get good food to eat, good clothes to wear, and reach beautiful girls to satisfy my craving, but it is not satisfied and I am always burning from inside. What is this?”
I replied:
“ The craving in your heart is the love for Divine Beauty, but you mistake it as love for human beauty or physical objects. Now because you do not know it, you are beating about the bush and roaming in dark thinking that the object of your love is somewhere here in this physical world.”
I told him that every human being is a lover of God, because he has been separated from the Divine Origin and wishes to regain his or her homeland. The only difference between various men or women is that some have stronger storm of love and some have lesser. The greater the storm of love is the more are the possibilities of his or her reaching the Divine Beloved. That is why the Auliya Allah (Friends of God) are of the opinion that the so-called bad men/women, vagabonds and rascals make very good raw-material for Sufism. The people of flat, dull nature cannot aspire for higher spiritual attainments because the flame of love which can carry the man like a huge rocket, much beyond the sun and stars, is not there. Now, it is the perfect spiritual guides who know how to divert the lover and put them in the right rail/track. And when these so-called bad men/women are put on the right rail, they reach the destination much quicker than the ordinary men of flat and dull nature however pious they may be and however hard they worship. So I am glad to know, by your confession, that you have a weakness for female beauty. Actually it is not a weakness. It is a great strength provided it is not misused. You are, therefore, right in saying that love without purification is no love. It is then called lust.You must also know that love is meant for Allah alone. And what goes by this name is lust not love. It is love (holy) only when it is channelized in the right direction (Divine direction) through spiritual purification. I think you understand me. But hearing this, your wife may get offended and think that you do not love her. She should not take it ill. What actually happens is that after spiritual purification one starts loving everything and everybody, because he then sees Divine Beauty in everything even in the most ugly things. I do not mean that your wife is ugly, for, I have not seen her. What I mean is that when the seeker (salik) reaches the stage of Fana and the Truth of Wahdatul Wujud (Oneness of Being) dawns upon him and he sees Divine Beauty in everything. Your wife will be happy to know that. Hadrat Shaikh Ibn Arabi who was the greatest exponent of Wahdatul Wujud, has said that woman is the finest specimen of God’s creations.But in the beginning one has to keep away from physical (female) beauty because the ground is so slippery. That is to say when the Nafs (beastly self) has not yet been tamed or subdued. But when the Nafs is subdued through the process of purification (by Salat, Zikr, Ashghal, Moraqbah), then one sees Divine Beauty everywhere. A poet has said:
“ Wherever we ran, we saw Thy Face! And wherever we reached, we reached Thy Courtyard.”


Q: Please explain “ Man is man and God is God.” 

A: You are right that the exoteric Ulama are not aware of the real significance of this statement. This is about the stage of Baqa-bi-Allah when, after, Fana he returns to his individuality as Vicegerent ( Khalifa ) of Allah on earth, having been attributed with Divine Attributes, or qualified with Divine Qualities.


Q: When we say our salat (ritual prayer) which point do we to fix our gaze? Can we close our eyes during salat?

A: It is said in a hadith that we have to fix our gaze at the place of sajda (prostration point). As such we must obey it. Even then you can imagine that you are face to face with Allah s.w.t. Eyes should be kept open in salat. You should know or you must have noticed by now that when a seeker starts entering the stage of Fana, if he closes his eyes, he is at once caught in Moraqabah-i-Zat which means that everywhere is He and the seeker is nowhere. But this is not allowed in salat because in salat the seeker has to retain his individual self worshipping the Divine Lord. The moment you close your eyes you get Fana in Allah, and therefore your salat is no more valid. But if you keep your eyes open you do not go into Fana easily. But in the final stages of Baqa-bi-Allah, the seeker is both Fana and Baqa simultaneously. This state has been described in my book as Jamiyyat. In that stage also one has to keep his eyes open during salat otherwise he is overpowered by Fana. Do you follow me?


Q: In your previous letter you said you are going to tell me how the American Doctors were convinced about the curing effects of Surah Fateha. Could you please relate the incident? 

A: Once a man named Dr Zainul Abidin went to U.S.A. He knew that the Doctors there had built a sanitorium in which they cured the patients of all diseases not by medicines, but by creating artificially an atmosphere full of healthy influences created through different colours, perfumes and sound (light music), etc. Any patient who was kept in such rooms got cured without medicine. So, Dr Zainul Abidin went to see that sanitorium. When he reached there he was surrounded by the doctors in charge of the sanitorium.
They said:“ We have heard that the Muslim people recite something and then blow it upon the patients and they are cured. Is it true?
Dr. Zainul Abidin replied: “ Yes ”
They further asked: “ What do you recite?”
He said: “ We recite Surah Fateha.”
Dr Zainul Abidin said that when he was asked that question, he remembered a hadith of the Holy Prophet (pbuh) saying that some companions went on a journey. They spent a night in a village where the people brought a mad person to them and asked them to recite over him because they were the companions of the Holy Prophet (pbuh). They recited Surah Fateha over him and he was alright.
Therefore, Dr Zainul Abidin said to the doctors that the Muslims recite Surah Fateha over the patients. Then the American doctors asked Dr Zainul Abidin to recite the same thing there. As he started reciting they put some cameras around him to take the photographs of the influences, and they were surprised to see that recital of Surah Fateha created the same influences in the atmosphere as those people had created artificially in the sanitorium by means of sounds, lights, perfumes, etc.

Q: This question is related to answers given above. Isn’t everything in this world is governed by the law of causualty (cause and effect)? You give medicine to the sick and he is cured. Why should he be cured by recitals or Tawiz?
A: Alright, I ask you why should a sick be cured by eating herbs. This is because Allah has put some curative influences in that herb. Similarly, Allah has put some curative influences in His Names (Sifat Allah) and words of the Holy Quran. You must know that the days of dry rationalism (when miracles were denied) characteristic of the Victorian Age, are now gone, and now the people in the Western countries and even in Atheist Russia are treating the patients by spiritual methods called “ Faith Healing.” I know a doctor in Brazil who fasts for three days continuously and then operates upon the patients not with the knife, but with his finger. He is not a Muslim, but this is the Barakat (influence) of fast. So after the operation he closes the wound and only a small scratch is visible on the body of the patient but the bad kidney, etc are no more there. One of such doctors in Brazil was killed by other doctors because he spoilt their trade/business.
These are the miracles of Divine Names and Divine Words in the Holy Books and also some spiritual concentrations which nobody except the foolhardy denies. You can reply to such people saying that if God can put curative effects in the vegetables and herbs why can’t He put the same effects in the breath and words of MAN who is the lord of creation (Ashraful Makhluqat), specially in His Own Names and Words? It shows that those who do not believe in miracles, do not see beyond their nose. They do not know that even the miracles are governed by the Law of Causualty. But while ordinary events have visible causes, the miracles have hidden causes. The reason why the Saints can see distant things and hear distant sounds and read your mind is that their inner eyes are opened, but people do not know it. Even in Atheist Russia “ eyeless” seeing, and “ earless ” hearing is being done. Telepathy, clairvoyance and levitation are instances of the miracles having hidden causes. Moreover, God is powerful enough to create a thing without a cause. Did He not create the whole Universe with any cause, material or instruments? Did He not create Adam without father and mother, and Jesus Christ without father?

Q: How to differentiate whether something is coming from God or from Satan?

A: You have put the question and replied it yourself that it is through knowledge and spiritual purification. You are right. But it is sometimes difficult to know whether an idea coming to your mind is from God or from Satan. The Aulia Allah (Friends of God) have established clear signs to distinguish between khatrat-i-Rahmani (ideas coming from God) and Khatrat-i-Shaitani (ideas coming from Shaitans). If the idea coming in your mind is according to Shariat it is Rahmani and if it is anti-Shariat it is Shaitanic.
When the thought (idea) does not apparently seem to be anti-Islamic, you can judge it like this: If it is weak and shaky (doubtful) it is from Satan. If it is strong and firm and unmistakable it is from God. Once a Shaikh was sitting in solitude busy in Moraqbah, etc. Suddenly a thought came to his mind that it is better to go for Jihad than sit in solitude. But because he was purified and had attained a high spiritual status he at once realized the idea was shaky and that it was Satan’s doing. The Satan put in his mind that by doing Jihad he will be admired by the people. So he (the Shaikh) refrained from it and kept on sitting in solitude.
Another example of Islamic and anti-Islamic thought is this: Once Hadrat Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani (r) was sitting and praying when suddenly a cloud of light  (Nur) appeared and in that cloud he was a king sitting on a Throne and saying:
“ O Abdul Qadir, We are satisfied with you and you need not say salat any more.”
The Shaikh knew by Ilm (knowledge) and spiritual purification that nobody can ever be excused salat in his life and therefore it is Shaitan and not God who is giving that command. So he uttered “ La Haula Wa la Quwwata illa Billah” (There is no power and protection save only Allah) and at this Satan disappeared saying:
“ O Abdul Qadir knowledge has saved you from my deception.”
This was another  attack (unislamic). The Shaikh soon realizes it said:
“ O cursed creature! It is not my knowledge, but it is my Allah who has saved me.”
So his (Satan) second attack also went wrong.

Q: Why the old scriptures got corrupted when Allah has said that He will save the Holy Quran from being corrupted?

A: Allah s.w.t has given this promise, assurance or undertaking in respect of the Holy Quran only. This does not mean that all heavenly books are included in this assurance. Now a question arises. Why did He give this assurance regarding the Holy Quran and not other books preceding it? The reason is that the world had to come to an end one day and resurrection had to take place. Therefore, the chain or the line of prophethood had to end one day and somebody had to be the last Prophet. Since our Noble Prophet was destined to be the last Prophet he was to be the greatest as well, because he or his teachings had to mark the culmination or perfection of humanity which was going through the stages of spiritual, moral, social evolution till it reached maturity in the hands of the maturest and the most perfect last Prophet. That is the reason why his teachings embodied in the Holy Quran (and explained and exemplified by the Prophet) had to be preserved up to the Day of Resurrection because no next Prophet was to come in the scheme of God Almighty, to revive God Commands.


Q: Why some Saints remained unmarried when the Prophet (pbuh) says that he who does not marry is not of me? 

A: There are very few examples of the Saints who did not marry. They are special exceptions to that rule, not because they themselves willfully refrained from marriage, but because Allah and the Holy Prophet himself gave them the permission or order not to marry due to the special circumstances they were in. For instances, some of the unmarried Saints were caught in perpetual “ hal” (intoxication) of Fana. Some lost consciousness and went “Majdhub” and so on. However, there are some Ahadith saying if you do that you are not one of us. For instance, the hadith says:
“ He who imitates a community becomes one of it.” This means that by copying or imitating a non-Muslim community one is likely to become one of them, because the external dress or behaviour has strong influence on the interior mentality. It does not mean that by imitating a kafir one immediately becomes a kafir. Morever, some exoteric Ulama do not seem to understand the real significance of this hadith also.Imitation of kafirs as meant in this hadith is the imitation of their unislamic customs or habits – for instance clean shaving, wearing neckties, drinking wine, etc and not drinking tea or eating potatoes or traveling in the aircraft, etc. Some people take exception to wearing western dress and hats or western hair cut. That is, to my mind, debatable. If a Muslim is living in a Western country he has to dress like the Westerners because of climatic conditions. But if he has the niyat (intention) of being respected in that dress, it is wrong, because real respect and honour belongs to Allah, His Prophets and His Friends, as said in the Holy Quran. But I must say that there is a craze among the people nowadays to adopt Western culture and civilization. That is wrong. It is injurious to Islamic culture and Islamic way of living. If you copy  the Western people in everything, you are bound to leave your identity as Muslims, whereas you are commanded in the Quran and Hadith to not only maintain your Muslim identity but to assert it as well, by obeying Islamic orders and by copying the Holy Prophet and the Saints of Islam instead of copying Churchils, Macdonald, John Dicks, Harris, Nixon, Regans and Carters.This is because in copying the Prophet and Saints of Islam you get sublime inspiration, while in copying the Kafirs (unbelievers) you are inspired towards Kufr (unbelief).


Q: Could you please tell what is the greatest Name of Almighty?

A: Somebody asked Imam Jaafar Assadiq (grandson of Imam Hussain, may Allah be pleased with them): 

“ What is Ism-i-Aazam (the greatest Name of the Lord)?”

He replied: “ Tell me what is His lesser Name (Ism-i-asghar).”

This means that every Name of the Almighty is great. However, there is a controversy among the Muslims about “ Ism-i-Azam.” Some say it is “Allah”. Some say it is “Rahman.” Some say there are several great Names, that is, each category of synonymous Names has a “greatname.” But Allah Almighty tells his special people what His Greatest Name is. When somebody asked Hadrat Ibrahim bin Adham, a Saint of our Silsala about it, he said: “ I am Ism-i-Azam.” To another questioner he said: “ Ism-i-Azam is that which cannot be contained in the Universe.” Once he said: “ Ism-i-Azam is that which spread all over the Universe 

Q: People asked what to do with doubtful money or money that may be from unlawful (haram) means?

A: There was a learned and pious Ulama ( scholar ) whom I knew had proposed a treatment of this sort of money which also includes Bank interest. He gave the Bank interest to a person to pay it to his own Bank as interest on a loan which he incurred. He said the bad money should go to pay bad dept of the bank loan. Therefore, one should give this type of money to somebody to pay interest charges of his Bank loan.


Q: Please explain about the qualities of anger and pride. What is honor in reality?

A: Anger and pride are bad qualities if applied with bad intentions and for bad purposes. If one is angry with the enemies of Islam and fights Jihad it is good and praiseworthy. But if he is angry with somebody who offends him or goes counter to his wishes it is bad. Similarly if one is proud of being humble and low it is good, as the Holy Prophet (pbuh) said: “ Al faqro fakhri ” (Poverty is my pride). He took pride not with wealth and worldly grandeur, but in poverty and humility. The thing is that most people in the world do not understand what real honour and respect is. They mistake arrogance (takabbur) as honour and conceit as self-respect. This is because they are in the clutches of Nafs (beastly self) and cannot differentiate between false arrogance, false prestige and self-respect. Allah Almighty has said in the Holy Quran:

“ All honour and respect is of Allah, of His Prophet and of the Momins.”

That is to say really honorable and respectable is Allah Himself, His Prophet and His Friends (called Auliya Allah) and nobody else. The worldly people who ignore God and His Prophet, and who think they are honorable because they possess wealth and power, are not honorable and respectable at all. They are most wretched because they ignore God, His Prophets and His teachings. They are the slaves of their beastly self (Nafs) and therefore, they are the most wretched creatures on earth. In another verse, Allah Almighty says:

“ The most honorable among you is the most pious (taqwa).”

This shows only those are worthy of our respect who believe in God, in the Prophet, in the Last Day and abide by their Commands. But those who do not do that, they are the friends of Shaitan (Auliya Shaitan) and deserve no respect at all.

So, you can see that those are keen on defending their honor and safeguarding their self-respect are not worthy of any respect. In the eyes of Allah swt, they are most wretched creatures, mere ignorant nobodies. Real honor and respect belongs to Allah, His Prophet and His Friends, however poor and destitute they may be in appearance. According to Islam, a pious peon (office boy) as compared to non-pious President of a country is much more honorable than the President. A black pious Muslim is higher and better than the white chief of a tribe who is not pious. Islam does not recognize class, color, birth, caste or language distinctions. The only criterion for greatness in Islam is piety (taqwa) and good deeds. And, mind you, this is noble principle which won millions of down-trodden races and communities and forced them to embrace Islam so that within a short time Islam became a global and universal religion. If you read Islamic history you will see that the slaves of Islam rose to prominence and became the teachers and benefactors of humanity while the people of high birth lagged far behind. This is due to the “Golden Principle” of Islam – “ The best among you the most pious among you.”


Q: Please explain one’s temptation for female beauty.

A: I have already dealt with this question earlier. I can say here this much that if one has a strong passion for human beauty, it is actually an asset and not a liability. We the spiritual people regard such people as a good raw material for spiritual development. But one who possesses such an inflammable and easily combustible spark must have to be extremely careful to keep a watch over it, lest it should get ignited anywhere and burn the possessor and all around him into ashes. You must know that everything is in Allah’s hand. If He pleases and put one on the right rail, by the Grace of Allah swt, the storm of love in that person will, InshaAllah, work as a powerful rocket to take him to the higher regions and will not be able to destroy him. But one must be always on the alert, and exercise utmost caution. The best way to save yourself from this mischief is to think that all beauty is Allah’s beauty and must be respected, venerated and honored as such. There is no harm in teaching Islam and Sufism to the ladies, but one must refrain from staring at them and from trying to go closer to them. The safeguards suggested by Islam in this respect are well known:
  1. One should not live, stay or travel with ghair Mahram ladies alone.
  2. Staring should be avoided. The first look at them is halal (permissible) and second, third…..looks are haram (unlawful). The Holy Quran tells you to “ lower your gaze” when the females are around you.
  3. Parda system (female covering) is also one of these safeguards.
  4. Mixed parties are not approved in Islam.
  5. Singing girls are not allowed.
  6. Female actress to play before males is not allowed in Islam.
  7. Islam teaches females to address males who happen to meet them not sweetly but roughly and harshly.
  8. Females are to hide everything of their bodies except face, hands and feet. This is the liberal view. The strict people do not allow even that. But in the Holy Quran this latitude is available in the words: “ The females have to hide their decoration to ghair Mahram except what is naturally manifest.” This word, illa mazahara (except what is manifest) includes the face, hands and feet according to some Mufassirin (experts).

Q: Why the Holy Prophet saw more women in Hell during the night of Miraj?

A: Women are in the habit of back-biting others (ghibat) which is a great sin. Another reason is the females are more sentimental than males and therefore their decisions and actions are faulty and sometimes ruinous. The females are mostly guided by sentiments and not reason which proves fatal.


Q: Is Idol worship during childhood conducive to good spiritual progress later on?

A: Poison is poison. It cannot be good for some at one time and bad for others at another time. Even the statue worshippers agree that basically it is wrong. They recommend it only in the beginning for the sake of better concentration. This shows they believe that basically it is wrong. Perhaps they forget that a building based on wrong and faulty foundations cannot go higher. Our experiences show that it crumbles even before completion. Moreover, the very idea of imagining the Infinite Being in the Finite objects is logically incorrect. You know by actual experience that from the very first day I told you to do Moraqbah-i-Zat which means one must imagine that the Divine Being is limitless, is everywhere and embraces all beings, even yourself, that He alone exists and nothing else exists besides Him. And you have personal experience that this Moraqbah (meditation) which is based on Truth has worked well, and produced good results. Now against this, if you tell a child that God is the idol and the idol is God , you know and the idol worshipper also says that is a wrong idea, so what can you expect from a child whose training starts from falsehood? The net result would be that the child will never be able to have correct Muraqbah of the Divine Being’s Infinite and all embracing nature. He cannot progress. The reason why you are making good progress in spiritualism is not because you visited temples and worshipped idols during childhood as stated by your cousin (who is still a Hindu), but because Allah swt had placed a spark of Truth in your heart which you had the courage to use correctly. As I told you in a previous letter, idol worship is the degenerated form of Wahdatul Wujud (Oneness of Being) and logically wrong. The Infinite cannot be contained by the Finite.


Q: Explain why grey hair grow first in the beard? What is the Islamic size of the beard?

A: I think the reason is more based on physical than spiritual conditions. Mostly the beards start growing grey in the case of those persons who suffer from bad colds and nazool (which means falling of mucus or phelm downwards in the teeth, eyes, throat and roots of beard). But the hair in the head are not affected by it. Sometimes there are spiritual causes as well. Sometimes people go grey due to mental worries. In that case it starts from the head. I read in a French novel (LES MISERABLES) in which it is stated that a man’s head went grey in a single night due to worries.

As regards size of beard, it is controversial. According to some, it should as long as the fist – when take it in the fist, it should not protrude more than that. Some say it should a fist plus one more finger

(finger in breath). Some are of the view that mere appearance of the beard that it exists is enough. This is Saudi’s opinion. But the Ulama of Egypt maintain that it is not at all necessary, therefore, they are “clean shaved.” I think most wives will accept this version (Fatwa) most willingly. Actually some wives like this Fatwa but do not say it!


Q: Please explain why the eagerness to know more and more on Islamic Truth / Subjects get intensified?

A: I am glad to hear this. This is a very good tendency. Keep it up and try to read books first in stories on Mashaikh, later on, on Haqaiq (high Truths) of Imam Ghazali, Ibn Arabi, Rumi etc are full of Haqaiq (plural of Haq:Truth). You should try to purchase English transalation of: Kimya-i- Saadat (known as Alchamy of Faith), Ihya al Ulum of Ghazali, Masnavi of Maulana Jalaluddin Rumi translated by Nicholson or Whinfield, Mystics and Saints of Islam (Tazkiratul Auliya) of Shaikh Fariduddin Attar translated by Arberry, Sufi Doctrine (Kitab-al-Taarruf) by Shaikh Abu Ismail translated by Arberry. These books are full of spiritual truths.


Q: Please give some examples or incidents where Takabbur (arrogance, pride) were displayed.

A: First of all Satan did it and was ruined. It is said in a hadith that a man who has as much as grain of Takabbur (pride) will not go to paradise. This is because Takabbur is the sifat (prerogative) of the Divine Lord and none else can share it with Him. The Sufi Shaikhs say that a spiritual seeker should consider himself as worst of all beings including dogs and swines.

Hazrat Musa (peace be upon him) was once asked by Allah Taala to bring the worst thing in the world. He was roaming about to find it when he came across a dead dog smelling awefully. He spread his cloth to take it when he heard a voice saying that the dog is not the worst thing. It has so many qualities of the Saints – keeping watch when all sleep, going hungry, and faithfulness to its master and so on. He went off and saw some filth (human dung) lying. He spread his cloth to take it.

 But a voice said:

“This is wheat. It is not worst thing. It has gone bad by remaining 24 hours in man’s stomach.”

Having failed he turned to God who asked:

“ Musa have you brought the worst object.”

He (Musa) replied:

 “Yes , Sir.”

God said:

“Where is that?”

He said:

“It is I.”

Allah s.w.t was pleased to hear this and praised his answer.


Q: Please explain the bad habit or effects of overeating.

A: Overeating is bad for the spiritual seekers and must be avoided. The Shaikhs have four principles:

  1. Eatless
  2. Talkless
  3. Sleepless
  4. Mix with people less.
It is a saying of the Sufi Shaikhs:

“ He who eats without appetite eats haram.”

The Holy Prophet (pbuh) has said:

“ While eating you must divide your stomach in three parts – one for food, one for water and one for breathing.”

Once a non-Muslim King sent a Hakim (Tabib or Doctor) to Madina to treat the Muslims. He lived there for a year, but no patient went to him. He asked a companion of the Prophet:

“ Why have you people boycotted me?”

He replied:

“ We do not fall ill because we act upon two advice of the Prophet (pbuh) – 1. Eat only when you are extremely hungry, 2. Stop eating when you still somewhat hungry.”

The Doctor said:

“ It that is so nobody can fall ill.”

And he (doctor) went away. You must have noticed that when you are feeling hungry your concentration and spiritual inspiration in Salat, Zikr, Moraqbah is much better. But when the stomach is full, you feel dull and sleepy. My habit is that I eat so much or so little in the night that when I get up at 3.00 a.m for Tahajjud and other things I am terribly hungry and I enjoy it very much. It is also advised by the Mashaikh that you should not say salat, zikr, moraqbah immediately after meals. It should be done at least after two hours after meals (particularly for Zikr and Moraqbah). But you can say salat after meals because there are certain (special) times for salat although the Shaikh say their salatul Isyak after meals. Infact this salat is their last affair and they go to sleep after a moraqbah followed by salat ul Isyak. One of the Mashaikh said:

“ I would prefer to be shot at than to be talked to after Isyak prayer." 

Hazrat Khwaja Mueenuddin chishty of Ajmeer ,who is the head if our chishti silsala in India/Pakistan, used to eat only three or four morsels of dry bread soaked in water after four days.

Q: What is the most important event and bitter experience in your life? What is your age? 

A: I am 75 years old. The most important event in my life is my baiyat with my Shaikh r.a. without which I would have been ruined. As regards my bitter experience, I think I had no bitter experience in life, because whatever comes from the Lord is “most sweet”, “most delicious”, “most lovely” and “most welcome.”

Q: What doa I have to recite for the dead after Fatiha?

A: If he is a wali Allah (Saint), pray to Allah s.w.t to bestow the blessings of Fatiha on him, and his blessings on you.

If he is an ordinary Muslim, pray to Allah s.w.t that He forgives that person, saves him from the torture of grave and give him a place in the paradise. Also pray for Islam’s glory and success of the Ummah. I do pray for the whole Ummah and Ummah of other prophets daily (after salat subuh) after Fatiha. I also pray for all pirbrothers, all murids, friends, relatives, teachers, etc daily.


Q: Please explain about Shariat and Tariqat.

A: There is no clash between Shariat and Tariqat. In fact no Tariqat is possible, I mean no spiritual progress is possible without abiding by the Laws and Commands of Shariat (which is another name of Islam). Even the most Divine intoxicated Sufis of the past such as Hallaj and Abu Yazid Bustami observed Shariat strictly. Hallaj used to pray 500 rakaats of nafil (prayer) daily in the prison when he was charged with anti-Islamic utterances like “Anal Haq” which he could not control. Hadrat Abu Yazid Bustami r.a also uttered some apparently unislamic words unconsciously, but his love for Shariat was proverbial.For instance, he did not eat melon in his life because he said he did not know how the Prophet (pbuh) cut it and ate it, lest he should be guilty of cutting and eating it in different way and violating the sunnat of the Prophet (pbuh). But there are some cases of over-dose and over-intoxication when some Sufis lost consciousness completely and turned Majdhub (over-intoxicated).Such people can be excused in Shariat.There are very, very few of such cases in the history of Islam. By and large, the Sufis of Islam were known for sobriety and strict adherence to Shariat Laws. It is also not allowed in Shariat to be idle and do nothing under the pretext of Tawakkal (Trust in God). But they do not know what Tawakkal means. Tawakkal means that you should try your best for the achievement of your object (including earning of livelihood) and then leave the results to God. If He gives you more, or gives you less, be satisfied with His will, decree or destiny. Allah s.wt knows best! Once a person came to see the Prophet (pbuh) on a camel. He made the camel to sit down and went into the Masjid (Mosque) to see the Prophet (pbuh) who asked him:

“Where is the camel?”

He said: “ I made it sit down outside trusting in God that He will protect it.”

The Prophet (pbuh) said: “ Do Tawakkal and tie the camel as well.”

This world of ours has been made the world of causality. It is governed by the law of cause and effect. Allah is therefore pleased if you obey the law of cause and effect because it is His will.

Once a Darwesh (Sufi) went into forest to practice Tawakkal and worship. When he did not get anything to eat for several days, he felt extremely hungry. He saw a lame and blind little bird sitting nearby, and was wondering how it was living and who gave it food? Suddenly a big bird came with something in its beak and gave it in the mouth of the blind bird. Seeing this the Darwesh said:

“ My Lord! Is that blind bird better than me?” 

A voice said to him: “ Why are you behaving like the blind little bird? Why don’t you become like that big bird and feed others?”

He then left the forest and went to the city to earn and eat.

Q: Could you briefly say something about Imam Mahdi, second coming of Hadrat Isa a.s. Who is Dajjal?

A: There are clear and authentic Ahadis (plural of hadis) about the coming of Imam Mahdi who will be a great Muslim reformer and Hadrat Isa a.s who will say salat behind Imam Mahdi. That is to say he will declare himself as the follower of our Noble Prophet Muhammad ( peace and blessings be upon him ).

Dajjal will be a great Kafir who will mislead people and turn them kafirs. He will be killed by Imam Mahdi who will then reform the people and turn them into good Muslims. But the time of their coming is not precisely given in Hadith.

Second coming of Hadrat Isa a.s is also given in the Injil as well, but the Christians have made a mess of this prophesy by giving wrong interpretation to it.


Q: What are the signs of Qiyamat?

A: No date has been indicated in the Quran and Hadith about it, only some indications have being given. These are mostly about universal corruption, sins, crimes, kufr, etc. It will come only when the last Muslim who will be in China, and who will be a Qutub, dies. This shows Qiyamat is still far away. Allah s.w.t knows best!

Q: Is there a clash between love of Allah and love for wife and children?

A: There is no clash between love of Allah, love of the Prophet and love of wife, children, parents, brothers,sisters, etc. What is required in Islam is that love for Allah and His Prophet should be more than the love for anybody or anything else. In fact love for parents, wife, children, etc is love for God, because He has ordered Mankind to love and take care of them. Then you are told to love all human being and all creatures and save them. It shows love of Allah does not clash with the love for Allah. The only thing is that love for Allah and love for Rasool (pbuh) should be more than others. For instance, during the battle of Uhud (near Madina) a lady heard the false news that the Holy Prophet (pbuh) had fallen martyr. She dashed to the battlefield and was told that her son, her husband and her brother had been killed. She said:

“ I do not care about them. But please tell me if my Prophet is alive.”

When they told her that the Prophet was alive, she thanked Allah s.w.t and said: 

“ Now the whole world is alive to me.”

There was another woman who offered her little baby to be taken to Jihad in the same battle. When the people said to her:

“ What is the use of a little baby?”

She said: 

“ If you are attacked by a sword use my baby as a shield. It will be at least of some service to Islam.”

These and many more in history are the examples of how love for Allah , His Rasool and Islam can be more than the love for dear and near relatives. During the battle of Badr (the first battle), Hazrat Abu Bakr’s son happened to face his father as his opponent. The son had not yet embraced Islam. But he did not kill his father. Later on when he embraced Islam he mentioned to his father and said:

“ You were exposed to my sword, but I did not kill you because you were my father.” 

Hearing this Hazrat Abu Bakr Siddiq ( rz ) said:

“ Had I seen you I would have cut you into pieces.”

You can see the difference between a Muslim and a Kafir’s love for God and relatives. Another example, when the Muslms won the battle of Badr, some 70 prisoners were taken. Now, the Prophet consulted his Companions as to what treatment should be meted out to them. Hazrat Umar (rz) said:

“ They should all be killed each one by his own Muslim relatives, that is, Muslim father and brother should kill his own kafir son and brother.”

 Hazrat Abu Bakr opined that they should be released on payment of ransom money. The Prophet (pbuh) accepted the opinion of Hazrat Abu Bakr. But soon a revelation came from Allah saying that they aught to have been killed because they were the enemies of Allah.


Q: Can you explain the various categories or kinds of Saints of Islam?

A: There are many kinds of Saints. One category is called Rijalullah (Men of God) who remain hidden and are assigned duties of serving and looking after mankind. The highest of them is called Ghous who is one in the world. Under him are two Qutub, one is meant to guide mankind, the other to look after the welfare of mankind. Then there are some Saints under the Qutub who serves mankind. They are known as Abdal, Autad, Nagiba, Najiba, etc. They are deputed to different areas. Then there are those who are deputed to guide mankind in different areas. There are some who are not given any duty because they are not competent enough. There are some who are Wali Allah but they do not know it themselves. It is not necessary that one becomes Wali Allah only by preaching and education. It is also not necessary that all those who preach and educate people become Aulia Allah. Walayat (Saintship) is Allah’s gift. It is generally awarded after Mujahidat (fighting against your beastly self). It can also be awarded without struggle, because some are born as Aulia Allah. But every Saint has to work and worship except those who are born Wali Allah. But even then they have to work hard to reconfirm in knowledge and details what they got in intuition and summary. But every Wali Allah is not entrusted with duties. There are some who are enjoying without duties.


Q: What is Taqwa?

A: Taqwa literally means fearing God. One who fears God acts righteously because he obeys God’s Commands. If he does not fear God, he does not obey Him and goes astray.


Q: What is Ehsan? 

A: There are two significance of Ehsan. Ordinarily it means doing good to people. But in Sufi terminology Ehsan means spiritual progress. It is mention in a Hadith in which Islam, Iman and Ehsan have been defined. Ehsan has been defined in that hadith as seeing Allah during salat. But if you cannot see, the next lower stage is to think that Allah sees you.


Q: Is silence necessary for Sainthood?

A: No. Silence is most resorted to in the beginning. Generally it is observed in Fana because in Fana you cannot speak. But in Baqa one has to speak and guide others.


Q: Some people simply come to our home or other places to collect sadaqah saying this and that purposes. Sometimes we are in a difficult position to ward them off. Please advise.

A: There are genuine reformers who collect funds and use them in proper ways. There are fake people who collect funds for themselves in the name of sadaqah. One must try to differentiate between the two categories.


Q: Please explain what is shirk?

A: Shirk means is to worship other than God. It is therefore the biggest sin and unpardonable. Shirk is of two kinds: 

1. Idol worship which is called Shirk Jali (open shirk).

2. Shirk khafi (hidden or subtle shirk) which is difficult to see. It is like love of wealth, love of self and other things. 

Allah s.w.t condemns in the Holy Quran those who “ worship their own ambitions” or beastly (worldly) desires. It is said in a hadith that some acts of shirk are so minute and imperceptible that it is as difficult to know them as it is to see the black feet of a black ant walking on a black stone in a dark night. Flattery is also shirk.