Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Simple Humanity and Humility of His Adab - The Prince Part 9

A Cup of Mourning
My bereavement is a slow burn,
A mourning not to boiling point,

It is a simmering warmth,
Gentle and toastie,
Like a cup of tea.

Would you like to share
Your Cup of Mourning
With me?

ADAB – Good Manners & Etiquette

This chain of posting is called 'The Prince'
because he is indeed one. A noble prince
of a noble lineage.
A Prince. When I arrived, in the early hours of the morning at Ku Ash’s home, it was already busy and packed with people. So many followers, friends and grieving family were congregating outside the house, down by the front door, in the living room on the first floor, and of course, right in the epicenter – huddled around his deathbed where he laid, silent and prone. Royal attendants dressed in black and military uniforms were already there, making the critical arrangements to fly Ku Ash by helicopter back to Kuala Kangsar, Perak, to be buried in the Royal Mausoleum of  the Perak Royal Family at Bukit Chandan.

Dignified Grief. While I was there I saw no outbreak of hysterics, no uncontrollable sobs of anguish, no wailing. I observed the crowd, many of them I know, but there were also a great many not known to me. Some were standing, others were sitting, some were quietly reciting dzikr under their breadth, while others were twiddling their tasbih (rosaries). I found the mourners to be dignified, somber and solemn in their controlled grief. For make no mistake about it, there was grief aplenty that early Friday morning, the 30th March 2012 - enough grief to fill a sea of sadness. But when I looked into their eyes, what I read was a simple muted “Oh dear…”

What is greater than knowledge? I thought the men, women and children were showing good adab (good manners and etiquette), expressing their grief gently and quietly within sight of their master’s unliving person. People might think me mad to keep going on like a mother hen about good manners in such a sorrowful occasion, but I am only remembering what an old friend of mine once told me – “I would sacrifice one hundred years of knowledge to acquire but one moment of perfect adab.”

So when someone asks this sinner, “Hey, what did your Shaykh ever teach you? Wahdatul Wujud? Wahdatul Shuhud? Ma’rifat? Haqiqat? Knowledge of the Arch-Angels? Some of those transcendental wisdom and divine lore that give wings to you Sufis to fly to the Divine Presence?”, this would be my reply, “To be honest, bro, he didn’t teach me much lore or give me any divine knowledge. What always affected me and drew my admiration to him was the simple humanity and humility of his adab.”

I don’t know what anyone else got from his or her association with Shaykh Raja Ashman ibni Sultan Azlan Shah. Maybe he did entrust some wonderful divine learning on the enlightened ones. But for me this is enough. Indeed it is more than enough. 

Al Fatihah.

Pax Taufiqa

Hate has no place in Islam
Love will show the Way.

1 comment:

Denise Emanuel Clemen said...

I am so very sorry for your loss.