Jump to content
Qries Qries Qries Qries Qries Qries

Recommended Posts

The Twenty-Third Letter






In His Name, be He glorified!


And there is nothing but it glorifies Him with praise.




Peace be upon you, and God's blessings and mercy for ever, to the number of the seconds of the minutes of your life and the particles of your body!


My Dear, Enterprising, Serious, True, Sincere, and Sagacious Brother!


For brothers of the Hereafter and the truth like us, differences of time and place form no obstacle to their conversing and intimacy. Even if one is in the East, one in the West, one in the past, one in the future, one in this world, and one in the Hereafter, they still may be considered as being together and they may talk together. Especially those who have undertaken the same duty to achieve the same goal; they may all be considered to be the same. Every morning I imagine that you are here with me, and I make over a part, a third, of my spiritual gains to you. May God find them acceptable! You are together with Abdülmecid and Abdurrahman in my prayers; God willing, you always receive your share. Your suffering certain difficulties in regard to worldly life saddened me a little, for your sake. But since this world is not eternal and there is a form of good present in disasters, it occurred to me to say, "This too will pass," on your behalf. I thought of the Hadith: "There is no livelihood, save that of the Hereafter." I recited the verse: "God is with those who patiently persevere." I said: "To God do we belong, and to Him is our return." I found consolation in place of you. If Almighty God loves a servant of His, He makes him feel disgust with the world, showing it to be ugly. God willing, you too belong to that class of those beloved by God. Do not let the multiplication of the obstacles preventing the spreading of the Words upset you. God willing, when the amount you have distributed come to manifest Divine mercy, those light-filled seeds will open truly abundant flowers.


You asked a number of questions. My dear brother! The majority of the Words and Letters which have been written occurred to my heart instantaneously, without the exercise of will; and they turned out very well. If I reply to you relying on my will and strength of knowledge and thought like the Old Said, the answers will turn out dull and deficient. For some time now, the inspirations of the heart have ceased and the whip of the memory been broken; but so that you should not remain without answer, I shall reply, extremely briefly to each of them.




What is the best way believers can pray for one another?


T h e A n s w e r : It has to be within the sphere of what is acceptable, for supplications become acceptable under certain conditions; their acceptability increases as these conditions are fulfilled. For instance, when supplications are to be made, a person should be purified spiritually by seeking forgiveness; then he should recite benedictions (Salawat) for the Prophet (PBUH}, an acceptable prayer, for intercession; and following his supplication, he should again recite the Salawat. For a prayer offered between two such acceptable prayers itself becomes acceptable. As is praying for another without their knowledge. So too are the traditional supplications and prayers in the Qur'an and Hadiths. For example:


O God! I beseech You to bestow forgiveness and well-being on me and on him in religion, this world, and the Hereafter. * O our Sustainer! Give us good in this world and good in the Hereafter, and defend us from the torment of the Fire.


General supplications like these which are offered sincerely, and with humility and tranquillity of heart; and following the five daily prayers, and the morning prayer in particular; and in holy places, and mosques in particular; and on Fridays, and particularly during the hour when prayers are answered ; and during the three months of Rajab, Sha’ban, and Ramadan, and on the well-known holy nights, such as the Prophet's birthday and Raga'ib, and on the Night of Power in particular - it is to be strongly hoped from Divine mercy that such supplications will be accepted. The results of such acceptable prayers are either seen exactly as wished in this world, or they are accepted in respect of the eternal life in the Hereafter of the one who offered them. That is to say, if what was sought does not occur exactly as wished, it may not be said that the prayer was not accepted; rather, that it was accepted in a better form.




Since the phrase, May God he pleased with him, is used for the Companions of the Prophet {PBUH}, is it appropriate to use it for others with the same meaning?


T h e A n s w e r : Yes, it may be used, because unlike Upon whom be blessings and peace., which is a mark of God's Prophet (PBUH), the epithet, May God be pleased with him, is not a mark particular to the Companions, but should be used for persons like the four Imams, Shah Abd ul-Qadir Gilani, Imam-i Rabbani, and Imam Ghazzali, who attained to the `greater sainthood' known as the `legacy of prophethood,' reaching the station of God's pleasure. But generally among religious scholars May God be pleased with him has been used for the Companions; May God have mercy on him, for the next two generations succeeding them; May God forgive him, for subsequent generations; and May his mystery be sanctified, for the great saints.




Which were superior, the great imams and interpreters of the Holy Law, or the `Shahs' and `spiritual poles' of the true Sufi paths?


T h e A n s w e r : Not all the interpreters of the Law, but Abu Hanifa, Malik, Shafi’i, and Ahmed b. Hanbal were superior to the Shahs and spiritual poles. But in some respects, some wondrous spiritual poles like Shah Gilani attained more brilliant stations, in particular virtues. However, general virtue was the Imams'. Furthermore, some of the Shahs of the Sufi paths were also interpreters of the Law; it cannot therefore be said that all interpreters of the Law were superior to the spiritual poles. But it may be said that after the Companions and the Mehdi, the Four Imams were superior.




What is the purpose and aim of the verse,


God is with those who patiently persevere?


T h e A n s w e r : As required by His Name of All-Wise, Almighty God placed in all things an arrangement like the steps of stairs. An impatient man does not act with slow deliberation, and so either skips some of the steps and falls, or leaves some deficient; he cannot mount to the roof of his goal. Thus, greed is the cause of loss. Patience however is the key to all difficulties, and the saying, "The greedy is subject to disappointment and loss," and Hadith, "Patience is the key to happiness," have become like proverbs. That is to say, Almighty God's grace and favour is together with the patient. For patience is threefold:


The First is to patiently persevere in refraining from sin; this patience is taqwa, and manifests the meaning of the verse:


God is with those who fear Him and restrain themselves.


The Second is patience in the face of calamity; this to place one's trust in God and to submit to Him. It is honoured by the manifestation of these verses:


God loves the patient. * God loves those who put their trust in Him.


As for impatience, it amounts to complaining about God, and to criticizing His actions, accusing His mercy, and not liking His wisdom. For sure, man, who is weak and powerless, weeps in the form of complaint against the blows of misfortune, but his complaint must be to Him, not about him. It should be like the words of Jacob (Upon whom be peace):


He said: I only, complain of my distraction and anguish to God. That is to say, he should complain to God, not lament, saying: "What have I done that this should have happened to me?" as though complaining to other human beings about God; to excite the sympathy of impotent humans is harmful and meaningless.


The Third Sort of Patience is patient perseverance in worship, which raises a person to the station of being beloved of God. It urges a person towards perfect worship of God and servitude of Him, which is the most elevated station.






The age of discretion is accepted to be fifteen. How did the Prophet


(Upon whom be blessings and peace) worship before his prophetic mission?


T h e A n s w e r : He used to worship in accordance with what remained of the religion of Abraham (Upon whom be peace), which was still extant in Arabia, though in very obscure form. But this was through his own choice as a good act, not because he was obliged or compelled to in any way. This truth is lengthy, so let it remain at that for now.




What was the wisdom in his prophethood commencing when he was forty years of age, which is reckoned to be the age of perfect maturity, and his blessed life continuing for sixty-three years?


T h e A n s w e r : There were numerous purposes and instances of wisdom in this. One of them is as follows: Prophethood is a great and extremely heavy responsibility. It may be borne through the unfolding of the intellectual abilities and capacity of the heart, and through their being perfected. The time they are most perfectly developed is the age of forty. In addition, youth, the time the passions of the soul are enflamed, and the blood fiery and exuberant, and worldly ambitions are intense, is not fitting for the duties of prophethood, which are purely Divine, sacred, and pertain to the Hereafter. However serious and sincere a man is before the age of forty, the suspicion that he is working for worldly renown might occur to those who who themselves seek fame. He could not easily be saved from their accusations. But after the age of forty, the descent to the grave begins, and the Hereafter looms larger for such a man than this world. He can be easily saved from such accusations in his actions and works, which look to the Hereafter, and he is successful. And others too are saved from thinking ill of him.


When it comes to his blessed life being sixty-three years, one of the instances of wisdom in it was this: the believers are charged by the Shari' a to love and respect God's Most Noble Prophet (Upon whom be blessings and peace) to the greatest degree, to feel disgust at absolutely nothing about him, and to see every aspect of him as good. Thus, Almighty God did not leave His Noble Beloved in the difficult and troublesome years of old age after sixty-three; He rather sent him to the Sublime Court at that age, which was the average life expectancy of most of the community of which he was the leader. He took him to Himself, showing that he was the leader in every respect.












Is the following a Hadith, and what does it mean? "The best of your youths are those who resemble men of mature age, while the worst of your men of middle age are those who resemble youths."


T h e A n s w e r : I have heard that it is a Hadith. Its meaning is this:


"The best youth is he who thinks of death like an elderly person, and working for the Hereafter, is not one of those who become captive to the passions of youth and drown in heedlessness. And the worst of your elderly people is he who tries to resemble the young in heedlessness and passion, and follows the lusts of the soul like a child."


The correct form of the second part you saw in the poster is as follows: I have hung it above my head for the wisdom it teaches. I look it at it every morning and evening and receive instruction.


If you want a friend, God is sufficient. Yes, if He is the friend, everything is a friend.


If you want companions, the Qur'an is sufficient. Indeed, for in the imagination one meets with the prophets and angels in it, watches the events in which they were involved, and becomes familiar with them.


If you want possessions, contentment is sufficient. Yes, one who is content is frugal; and one who is frugal, finds the blessing of plenty.


If you want an enemy, the soul is sufficient. Yes, one who fancies himself is visited with calamities and meets with difficulties. Whereas one who is not fond of himself, finds happiness, and goes to mercy.


If you want advice, death is sufficient. Yes, one who thinks of death is saved from love of this world, and works in earnest for the Hereafter.


I am adding an Eighth to your Seven Matters. It is like this:


A couple of days ago, a reciter of the Qur'an recited part of Sura Yusuf as far as,


Take my soul [at death.] as one submitting to Your will [as a Muslim], and unite me with the righteous.


Suddenly, like a flash, this point occurred to me: everything concerning the Qur'an and belief is valuable; however insignificant it appears to be, its value is great. Whatever assists in eternal happiness is not insignificant. In which case, it may not be said that this is only a small point, and not worth explaining or being given importance. And for sure, the first student and one addressed in matters of this kind, who appreciates the fine points of the Qur'an, Ibrahim Hulusi, wants to hear this point! In which case, listen to it:






It is a fine point of the finest of stories. An elevated, subtle, happy, and miraculous point of the verse,


Take my soul [at death] as one submitting, to Your will [as a Muslim], and unite me with the righteous,


which announces that the story of Joseph (Upon whom be peace), the best of stories, is coming to an end. It is this: the sorrows and pains of death and separation at the end of other happy stories, make bitter the pleasure the imagination has received from the story, and destroy it. Especially if they tell of death and separation just when recounting the moment of perfect joy and happiness, this is even more painful and causes those listening to cry out in sorrow. However, although this verse tells of Joseph's death just at the most brilliant part of his story, when he is Ruler of Egypt, united with his mother and father, fondly meeting with his brothers, and is experiencing the greatest happiness and joy of this world, it does so in such a way as to say: Joseph himself asked for his death from Almighty God in order to experience an even more happy and brilliant state; and he did die and did receive that happiness.


That is to say, there is beyond the grave a happiness and joy greater than the pleasurable happiness of this world, so that while in that most pleasurable worldly situation, a truth-seeing person like Joseph (Upon whom be peace) wished for bitter death, and so to receive that other happiness.


And so, see this eloquence of the All-Wise Qur'an, in what way it announces the end of the story of Joseph. It causes not sorrow and regret to those listening to it, but gives good tidings and adds further joy. It also gives guidance, saying: Work for beyond the grave, for it is there that true happiness and pleasure will be found. It also points out Joseph's exalted veraciousness, saying: even the most brilliant and joyful situation of this world did not cause him to become heedless; it did not captivate him; he still wanted the Hereafter.




The Enduring One, He is the Enduring One!


S a i d N u r s i








Link to comment
Share on other sites

This topic is now closed to further replies.
  • Create New...