Waʿaz Mubarak 5

6th Moharram al-Haraam, 1439 – Reflections

Allah Ta’ala instructed Rasulullah SAW to ‘call to the way of your Lord with hikmat (wisdom) and good instruction’ (16:125). In today’s waʿaz mubarak, al-Dai al-Ajal Syedna Aali Qadr Mufaddal Saifuddin TUS explained the importance of hikmat and illustrated the various ways by which its meaning is manifested in history.

At the very start, Syedna al-Dai al-Ajal TUS revealed the great hikmat in the word dāʿī, which means ‘one who calls’. When the letters of dāʿī (in Arabic) are reversed, it then spells yuʿādu which means ‘to return’. The al-Dai al-Mutlaq in the satr (seclusion) of the imam calls people to the Fatimi faith and through his hikmat and guidance secures for them their return to whence they came from.

It is Allah Taʿala’s justice and hikmat that there be in every era a Waliullah AS who ensures that the people of his era are blessed with Allah’s mercy just as Nabi Mohammed SAW was the mercy to those in his time. If this were not the case, then Allah’s justice would be flawed. That mercy is the imam in each era and in the time of satr it is the al-Dai al-Mutlaq. Hence Syedna Ali b. al-Maula Mohammed al-Waleed RA wrote in praise of the third dai, Syedna Hatim b. Ibrahim RA:

We do not say that the Imam of our time is in seclusion,

because you, O mercy of the Most Merciful, are our dai.

On this day as we passed the halfway mark of Ashara and Syedna al-Dai al-Ajal TUS heeded us to remember the great benevolence of al-Dai al-Ajal Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin RA. The expressions of maatam, bukaaʾ, nawh and ʿaweel that we exhibit today are the direct result of his decades of effort. Maula TUS looked to us and exclaimed, ‘Is Syedna Burhanuddin RA not responsible for what you are today?’ Maula, everything we are today is because of Syedna Mohammed Burhanuddin RA.

Allah Taʿala ‘gives wisdom to whom He wills, and whoever has been given wisdom has certainly been given much good. (2:269)’ Maulana al-Minʿaam TUS explained the nature of hikmat stating that it has great importance. Hikmat lies in what has occurred; it provides reasoning for why things happen the way they do.

Hikmat is akin to a key to a door, able to open up avenues of understanding and discovery. Amirul Mumineen AS stated that the Ahle Bayt AS are both the keys to knowledge and doors to wisdom. The key that opens these doors for us is mohabbat for them. Syedna al-Dai al-Ajal TUS went on to summarize the various types of ‘keys’ in today’s world including key cards, eye scans, fingerprint scanners (readers), and even passwords which are modern versions of keys. Maula TUS also spoke of the different types of doors and gateways: some equipped with sensors that open automatically, toll gates that open when payment is made, or electronic tolls that do not even require vehicles to stop, automatically deducting payment as the car passes through. In gestures of love and affection, Syedna Burhanuddin RA was presented the keys of a number of cities he visited — a physical key that meant the city was open to him and symbolically that he had opened the hearts of its people.

Syedna al-Dai al-Ajal TUS arrived ultimately at the concept of a ‘master key’ which opens all doors. For a mumin, the master key is the mohabbat of Waliullah AS. Imam Ahmed al-Mastur AS states that the first component of philosophy is having love for a field of knowledge. Without this love, the pursuit of knowledge becomes that much more difficult. Syedna al-Dai al-Ajal TUS explained that most people pursue careers motivated by their love for a field such as science or architecture. If such a feeling is absent in the pursuit of a career, something is lost. The component of love, specifically the love of Syedna Burhanuddin RA, drove many people to seek his blessings before choosing a subject of study. Like a true master key, their love for Syedna RA ensured their success when they followed his advice, opening doors of opportunity one after the next.

The love for Wali Allah AS is the key to all knowledge; it opens all doors of wisdom. Often we come across situations where we feel we are ill-equipped to perform a certain task assigned to us. However, when this task has been assigned by Wali Allah AS, Syedna al-Qadi al-Nu’man RA counsels us that we must take up this task with full confidence that Imam AS and his Dai TUS will provide us the spiritual guidance we require to be successful. Syedna al-Dai al-Ajal TUS explained why in Aljamea-tus-Saifiyah, even though a certain instructor may have a specialization, say in fiqh, he or she is delegated to teach other subjects, sometimes outside of his or her comfort zone.

Discussing hikmat in the context of medicine, Syedna al-Dai al-Ajal TUS described how a physician changes his diagnosis according to the specific allergies and symptoms of individual patients. The hikmat in his prescriptions and remedies lies in his individual reading and prognosis of each of his patients. But while he may be able to determine what caused a patient to fall ill, the hikmat as to why one individual succumbs to an illness and another does not is only known by Allah Taʿala and His Wali AS. For instance, Rasulullah SAW revealed that a fever is a means of exoneration for one’s sins. Similarly, leprosy which is explained in medical terms as a result of excessive black bile, is said to occur due to gheebat (backbiting).

At this juncture, Maulana al-Minʿaam TUS took a moment to stress his message to Mumineen to refrain from gheebat. “Why occupy ourselves with other’s shortcomings, even if true,” he said. “Should we not first look at our own shortcomings rather than others?” Syedna al-Dai al-Ajal TUS referred to a discussion between Syedna Abdulqadir Najmuddin RA and some others. Syedna Najmuddin RA warned of attacking a Mumin’s honour and spying on him. He then narrated an incident told by Jabir b. Abdullah al-Ansari where the Nabi Mohammed SAW and his Ashaab Kiraam were hit by a wind with a foul smell. Rasulullah SAW stated that the cause of this odour was that Mumineen were being slandered. Mumineen listening to Syedna Najmuddin RA asked why such foul winds did not occur in their age. Syedna RA responded by saying that the foul act of gheebat has increased to such an extent that the entire environment has been overcome with its foul smell, only we can no longer detect it. Like a tanner who works with hide all day is oblivious to the stench engulfing him, we too are unaware of the foul stench of gheebat that permeates the air.

Mohabbat in tandem with the permission of Awliya Allah AS is the key to success in any venture. Without love though, permission in itself does not equate to success. Rasulullah SAW reached the fort of Khaybar at night sending its inhabitants into retreat. The next morning he gave the Muslim standard to one of his companions who duly set off to capture the fort only to later return defeated. The same thing happened the next day, this time with the second companion. Both had gone with the sanction of Rasulullah SAW, his raza, and both had failed to triumph over the enemy.

On the third morning the Nabi SAW said he would give the standard to someone who ‘loves Allah and His messenger and one who is loved by Allah and His messenger.’ The love that was absent from the first two would be the telling factor that would see Maulana Ali AS triumph in his quest. On the morning of the battle he was afflicted with an eye infection which Rasulullah SAW cured by his labb mubarak. He then took the standard and was confronted by Khaybar’s legendary warrior Marhab. Undaunted, he took on the fearsome foe and with a thunderous blow sliced him asunder. He then took the mighty gate of the fort from its hinges and deflected the attacks of the defenders. So immense was the door that a collective of people who attempted to merely lift it were unable to do so.

When holding the standard, it is the level of love and loyalty that one has in them that will determine how far they are willing to go in order to be victorious. Or whether they are prepared to sacrifice themselves in pursuit of that triumph. This love and loyalty was epitomized in three different battles.

Firstly at the Battle of Muta, Maulana Ja’far al-Tayyaar AS was holding the standard and advanced against the Byzantine opposition. His right hand was severed so he took it in his left. This was severed too and yet he continued to clasp the standard to his chest using just his upper arms until he was slain.

Then, at the Battle of the Camel with the dissidents against Maulana Ali AS, a young man by the name of Muslim volunteered to be the one to take the Quran towards the enemy. He was told by Amirul Mumineen AS that he would have his right arm severed, then his left arm and then be killed but even so, on each of the three occasions on which Maulana Ali AS repeated the call for a volunteer it was he alone who answered. When he went forward with it, the events occurred exactly as Maulana Ali AS had said. Each arm was cut and from the right hand he took it in the left when finally he was left clasping it to his chest as he was killed.

The third instance was of Maulana Abbas AS in Karbala who lost first his right arm, then his left and was finally felled as he desperately tried to return the water vessel clasped in his mouth and against his chest. The holding of each object, standard, Quran and waterskin, near the chest at their last moments symbolized the love they bore in their hearts for their quest, their loyalty to it and their willingness to give up their lives for it.

Each of the three things carried a profound symbolization that their carriers were honouring. The first time a banner or standard was used was by Ibrahim Nabi AS and thus the tradition is seen around the world since his followers include peoples from all over the globe. Nabi Ibrahim’s AS true heir is Rasulullah SAW and so in the fight against the Byzantine army it was incumbent upon his soldiers to defend the honour of Ibrahim Nabi’s AS standard. In the second Battle of the Camel the fight was against a Muslim army and the values and honour being defended were those of the true meaning of the Quran. In the third battle, that of Karbala, the water that Maulana Abbas carried and protected till his last, was symbolic of the humanity that Imam Husain AS had risen in protection of against a brutal foe which had no semblance of humanity whatsoever.

The extent of that inhumanity and brutality was visible in their denial of water, the slaying of a six month infant and the slaughter of Imam Husain’s AS Ahle Bayt AS and Ashaab Kiraam RA. Even after Imam Husain’s AS shahaadat this brutality continued with the desecration of the bodies of the martyred and the wanton cruelty inflicted on the sayyidaat and children of Imam Husain’s AS Ahle Bayt AS. To inflict maximum pain and distress the imprisoned, chained and shackled survivors were taken to Damascus on as long a route as possible, eventually reaching their destination on the 6th of Safar, close to a month after Aashura.

In this waʿaz mubarak on wisdom and the key to it, Maulana al-Min’aam TUS referenced the instance when a hungry man came upon Maulana Ali AS near the masjid of Kufa to find him having morsels of raw flour. After the man had choked on the morsels that he insisted on having, he was then sent by Maulana Ali AS, whom he had not recognized, to Imam Hasan and Husain AS. With the food in front of him he was unable to eat and began sobbing. This weeping unlocked the doors of understanding as he came to know, as a result, that he was now in the shelter of the imams and that the ‘dervish’ he thought he had met in the masjid was in fact Maulana Ali AS.

In teaching his son, Luqman Hakim QR chose the following six quotes from the wisdom of 4000 prophets:

  1. To pray namaaz with utmost concentration and humility
  2. To control one’s tongue in public
  3. To control one’s action at a meal
  4. To control one’s gaze when in another’s house
  5. To constantly be mindful of two things; Allah and death
  6. To always forget two things; the good you do for others and the ill they have done to you.

Wisdom is the lost element of a Mumin and this lost element, in truth, is jannat. Lost wisdom should be sought from any source and the return path to the lost paradise should also be sought anyhow. That path is Maula; to find Maula is to find paradise.

In this waʿaz mubarak being held in Karachi, Maulana TUS spoke on Sind — an area historically located in what is present day Pakistan. Sind has been a centre of the dawat since the Fatimi imams and in the time of Imam Moiz AS the sermons were read here in his name. A jami’ masjid built in that era in Multan may possibly still exist today. The Arabic word of Sind equals 114, as does the name Maʿad (Imam Maʿad al-Muʿiz li Deen Allah AS) and damʿ (tear).

Weeping is the key to our salvation — the reason we can hope to return from whence we came. We are promised that one tear upon Husain Imam AS will unlock eight realms of jannat for us.

The weeping of Maulana Ali Asgar AS unlocked the path to his martyrdom. The infant was sobbing uncontrollably when Maulatona Umme Kulsum AS said to Imam Husain AS he was crying due to thirst. To this the loving father replied that he knew the cause of the sobbing, which was not for water. As soon as he took him in his hands the infant ceased crying for now he was on his way to his desired destination. The enemy replied to Imam Husain’s AS request for a sip of water for this innocent child with an arrow to his throat and the child’s head drooped onto his respected father’s upraised hands: hands that would then have the desperate task of digging a grave in which to bury the young shahzada.

At the end of today’s waʿaz mubarak we were told of the hikmat behind Rasulullah’s SAW taking the scent of his respected grandsons Imam Hasan and Imam Husain AS. A scent is employed at the time of death, in order to ease the final breath. For Rasulullah SAW, that scent was of the two Imams AS and thereby he showed that their remembrance will ease the final moments of a Mumin.

May Allah Taʿala preserve the life of our cherished Maula TUS,whose remembrance ever eases the hardships we face, both in this realm and in the hereafter.