Praise belongs to God who guided us to this;
we would never have been guided if Allah had not guided us!
Generosity is from Allah - Al-Karim - manifestation of that beautiful Name of Allah. I am grateful for this invite from our host tonight. He has been very generous in supporting the Islamic cause. Allah make many people like him to be generous, always eager and willing to help in building school, mosques etc.
I don't know where to begin (the sohbet). But I want to relate to you this one recent experience of mine. My shaykh, Mawlana Shaykh Nazim had asked me to go to East and West Africa. I have been to South Africa. I was thinking why go to Africa again. I have plenty of things that I need to do and now I have additional task of going to Africa. Shaykh Nazim had actually asked me to locate a shaykh there. I was reluctant to go, so I asked someone else in Ghana to look for that person Mawlana Shaykh Nazim had identified.
There is wisdom in our Shaykh's orders, certainly. But our ego usually try to counter them, to break their orders. You like to do something because your ego wants to do it yet when your guru ask you do something, you would find all sorts of excuses not to do it. Grandshaykh Abdullah Faiz Daghestani used to say: "I have many followers but I only have two mureeds. They are Shaykh Nazim Effendi and Shaykh Hussien Effendi. When I give them orders, they fullfill it. Followers don't do that."
Now coming back to the man whom I was supposed to find. I finally went to Africa recently. We went to many places, asked people about that shaykh but nobody knew him. It so happened that on the day when I was leaving Africa, suddenly a man appeared before me and hugged me, saying "How's Mawlana Shaykh Nazim? Mawlana asked me to come here because his son-in-law would be waiting for me."
He then invited me to his school where he looks after some 250 orphans. Their condition was very poor. The children only eat rice and some gravy. They hardly eat vegetables, let alone meat. Anyhow, this shaykh told me that he had taken bay'at with Mawlana Shaykh Nazim when he was 14 years old, in a dream. "Mawlana would teach me wirid and guide me in my dreams. I only saw his picture once, by chance on the internet. I instantly recognized him when I saw his photo - the man who often appears in my dreams," he said. The shaykh is now 75 and he has been under Mawlana's coaching since 14, virtually. I immediately phoned Mawlana telling him the good news, that I found the man he wanted me to find. Mawlana Shaykh Nazim was obviously delighted and asked me to renew bay'at with that shaykh on his behalf. I obliged.
We were talking about generosity earlier. Allah is the creator of generosity. You know there is a hadith where the Prophet asked who is muflis (poor). They all thought a muflis is one who does not have money. But the Prophet said no. In fact, someone who prays and fast could also be muflis because they backbite their fellow brothers and in the akhira Allah would pay back the oppressed from the good deeds of the oppressor.
We always thought muflis is always associated with wealth or money. That's because we are always thinking about dunya. Yet there are people whom Allah, in His generosity, give them not only wealth but piety and sincerity. So pray for that. Pray so that Allah give us wealth and piety and sincerity.
Pray Rabbana atina fid dunya hasanah, wa fil akhirati hasanah.
What is hasanah? Our understanding of hasanah varies and surely we do not understand it the way the awliya understood it. Know that, to the awliya, what that du'a means is: "O Lord, give us in this dunya Muhammad and in the akhira Muhammad!" What is the biggest hasanah that Allah could give? It is Rasul. What does Allah love more other than the Prophet? Verily, he is the Beloved of Allah. So the best thing that we could ask for is the one that Allah Himself loves.What is the best hasanat in akhira? No doubt, it is to be with Prophet Muhammad s.a.w. Muflis is he who is far from the Prophet! And what is wealth to Allah and the Prophet? Is it dunya or akhira? Of course it is akhira with its paradise everything. In fact there are more than 7 paradise surely. You think Allah is not rich enough to create more than 7 paradise? The galaxy has some 80 billion stars. Dare you think Allah cannot create 80 billion paradise?
There are many levels of heavens and to go to a higher level you need amal. What is your amal? You are considered as not having amal if you do not understand His Names and attributes. Diving into one of His Names is enough to keep you occupied in dunya wal akhira. That's how vast it is.
You know Qur'an is not created (not a creation). It is alive. Khidir was looking for maul hayat, the elixir of life. It is actually contained in each and every letter of the Qur'an. It is embedded in it. You cannot translate the Qur'an. You can only comment on it. How can you translate when a letter of the Qur'an is like an ocean. If you dived in it, it is endless. Alif lam mim, za likal kita bula rai bafi hudan lil muttaqin. No doubt this kitab will give you wealth if you dived in it. Can we do that? The awliya can. The scholars who claim to know much, can they do that? The scholars should be ashamed if they cannot do it. If you know the real meaning of each of the letter in the Qur'an, it would take you to haqiqatul Nabi.
Shaykh Sharafuddin died at 63. He died off being overwhelmed by the meaning of Surah al-An'Am on the verse where Allah said 'We have created from them off springs..." He told (someone) his experience of being shown 'the off springs', about Imam Mahdi and his deputies. He said he was absorbed and drowned in the meaning of that verse. He died three days later.
Not many people are gifted with such abilities to dive and be revealed the treasures in the ocean of the Qur'anic letters. So hang on to one who has such an ability.
The above is not a verbatim transcript of Shaykh Hisham's sohbet. It is only my sketchy summary of the main points he had talked about last night, 5th May 2010. Wallahu'alam. May I be forgiven for any mistakes.