Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Abu Yazid al-Bistami


O Son, by far this is the most profound and favorite sufi quotation for me:

I made four mistakes in my preliminary steps in this way:
I thought that I remember Him, that I know Him, that I love Him, and that I seek Him;
but when I reached Him,
I saw that His remembering of me preceded my remembrance of Him, that His knowledge about me preceded my knowledge of Him, that His love towards me was more ancient than my love towards Him, and that He sought me in order that I would begin to seek Him.
- Abu Yazid al-Bistami

Summary of Lessons from Abu Yazid
- from 'Classical Islam the Naqshabandi Sufi Tradition'

Put your affairs in the hands of God.

Sincerely accept the doctrine of tawhid consisting of 5 essentials:
- follow the Qur'an and sunnah
- always speak the truth
- keep the heart free from hatred
- avoid forbidden food
- shun innovations

"I have come to God through God. I have come to know what is other than God with the Light of God".

"God has granted His servants favors for the purpose of bringing them closer to Him. Instead they are fascinated with the favors and are drifting further from Him."

"O Lord, You have created this creation without its knowledge. You have placed on it a trust without its will. If You do not help it, who will?"

"There are special servants of God who if God veiled Himself from their sight in Paradise, would implore Him to take them out of Paradise just as the inhabitants of the Fire implore Him to release them from hell."

"If God loves His servant, He will grant three attributes that are the proofs of His Love: generosity like the generosity of the ocean, favor like the favor of the sun in its giving light, and modesty like modesty of the earth. The true lover never considers any affliction too great and never deceases his worship because of his pure faith."

When he was asked to show a deed with which one can approach the Lord, he says, "Love the friends of God in order that they will love you. Because God look at the hearts of his saints and He will see your name engraved in the heart of His saints, and He will forgive you."

"I want not to want except what He wants."

"O my Lord, Your obedience to me is greater than my obedience to You" "O God You are granting my request and I am yet to obey You."

"O God it is not strange that I love you because I am a weak servant but it is strange that You love me when You are the King of Kings."

"Sufism is to give up rest and accept suffering"

"He who does not have a shaykh, his shaykh is syaitan"

He was asked 'when does a man become a man?' he said, "when he knows the mistakes of his self and busies himself in correcting them."

Before he died someone asked him his age, he said 'I am four years old. For seventy years I was veiled, I got rid of my veils only four years ago.'
(He died in 875 CE)

May Allah sanctify his secrets. May Allah inspires us to imitate his good deeds.

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