Tuesday, April 3, 2012

The Good, The Bad, The Ugly, The Naqshbandi – The Prince Part 6


An animated spirit. Each one of them. Saydina Abu Bakar (ra) was famously known as the Shadow of the Prophet for the physical and spiritual closeness he has to Muhammad Habibullah(pbuh). But  I am sure that the Prophet made all his Companions feel special and relevant - And that there would always be a space under his shade and guidance for them, however their character, attitude and scruples. For although it is common to paint the Prophet Muhammad’s Companions (ra) as two-dimensional historical characters, the truth is that within each of them animated a spirited personality very much different from one another – some are quiet like Abu Bakar (after all, when did you ever hear a shadow make any sound?), others are boisterous like Umar, another can be dashing like Ali and some are the flower of modesty that is Usman. And although this is not much discussed, they don’t all necessarily get along 24/7. But however they may be towards one another, they are united by their love and loyalty to Muhammad (pbuh). And this is also why they loved and tolerated one another, because the Prophet had accepted them all, regardless.


I am saying this because any Sufi tariqa is a microcosm, a small universe and facsimile of the original brotherhood of the Companions. In the Sufi order we have businessmen and public servants, musicians and actors, writer and artists, we have people who go into the jungle looking for perfumed herb and woods, we have scientists and doctors doing heart surgery. We have lawyers and politicians (yes, even them! Is the shaykh not merciful?), carpet sellers, land brokers, bankers, and even a smattering of the mentally challenged (of course, some smart scoundrels will contend that we are ALL mentally challenged, we just differ in the degrees of our insanity). We also have planters, jewelers, physicists, mathematicians, cow and sheep herders. We have sportsmen and couch-potatoes. Basically, we have them all - The good, the bad and the ugly. The mureeds of the Sufi Order have to accept their fellow students, sometimes not because of their own openness and tolerance (after all, we are not perfect), but simply because the Shaykh himself accepts the most unlikely characters... so who are we to reject the companionship of a student merely because he or she does not rise to our own biased standards. People will just sigh with resignation, “Oh Shaykh… if you can accept Feisal, who are we to reject him...?”

This is the easiest thing to contemplate but the hardest thing to do. But if you can do that, if you can at least try… then please, let me kiss your hand and embrace a Mureed of Shaykh Raja Ashman. For you have honoured his memory. Ah..., but who am I to doubt? I am sure you will, each and everyone of you.

God bless your love for him, and may God forgive me because the truth is, the only person I am doubting is myself.

wa min Allah at-taufiq

The Prince Postings
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5

Hate has no place in Islam
Love will show the Way

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