Thursday, September 11, 2014

Shaykh Muhammad al-Ninowy at Majlis Haul Imam Al-Haddad in Malaysia - September 2014


Alhamdulillah wa shukrulillah that we were able to attend the annual majlis commemorating the passing of one of the greatest solehin: Al-Imam Al-Habib Abdullah bin Alawi Al-Haddad (1634-1720).

Shaykh Dr. Muhammad bin Yahya al-Husayni al-Ninowy was one of the many distinguished guests at the 2014 Majlis Haul held at Shah Alam State Mosque in Malaysia.

Shaykh Muhammad al-Ninowy re-emphasized some of the points he made at an earlier majlis in KL especially on the importance of showing unconditional compassion. Below is a summary of the key points the shaykh delivered in his tausiyah at the Majlis Haul on September 6th, 2014.

  • The much loved Shaykh began, as always, quoting a verse of the Quran where Allah enjoins us to be with the sadiqin (the truthful). It is important that we be cognizant of the different effects we could get by associating with one who is perfumed as opposed to a blacksmith. Imam Al-Haddad belonged to "people of ilm" and not "people of information". We tend to think 'ilm is about amassing information. 'Ilm that does not lead to transformation, and transformation that does not lead to realization or makrifah, is not 'ilm
  • People invented mass weapon, the hydrogen bomb etc. - that is not beneficial 'ilm. Prophet Muhammad salallah alaihi wasalam came with a weapon of construction. He demanded you to positively contribute to the earth, to make a change, not status quo, at least to keep it good. We learned from history, from the time of Qabil, there were nations killing nations. Then Prophet Muhammad came with a message of construction and not destruction. Muslims constitute the largest number of war victims yet Muslims are considered as the cause of violence. Islam believe in tolerance.
  • Prophet Muhammad salallah alaihi wasalam was the most articulate. He was jawami'ul kalam. Some people intellectualize their speeches. But Prophet Muhammad was one who speak like the rain. It falls on people who know and people who don't know. The Prophet says, "I am but a gift of mercy." The giver of the gift is Allah. The recipient of the gift is Prophet Muhammad. When Allah gives, He gives the best gift there is.
  • Allah wants us to be with the solehin and Prophet Muhammad is sayyidul solehin (the foremost leader of the righteous). He will lead the sirat. 
  • Allah has created male and female, and so many tribes and nations, to do what? To hate each other? To employ violence against each other? No. It's to build bridges and to do good even to those who don't do you good. We must show unconditional love. We must show mercy to other cultures. We cannot be telling people 'your culture is entirely bad.'. We should tell people 'keep the good things you are doing'. We must respect other people's culture. We are only muzakkir, that is our job is to remind them. We cannot force people to accept Islam. If they don't, we must offer them unconditional compassion. The belief has to come from the heart. Islam was spread with love, not sword. Islam was spread with the power of logic, not the logic of power. Prophet Muhammad salallah alaihi wasalam used the power of logic which is risalah/message of tolerance. Firaun, Qarun, Haman, Abu Jahal, Abu Lahab all used the logic of power. Rahmah means to afford unconditional compassion even when you disagree with the person.
  • Trace the footsteps of Imam Al-Haddad and other awliya. They are people who give everything they had for the sake of Allah. They embody Islam with love, with inclusiveness and with unconditional compassion. Life is about giving, not just taking. Learn to give back, not just take. Prophet Muhammad salallah alaihi wasalam and awliya came to give everything, not to take.
  • If you kill a bird, the bird will complain to Allah about you. Islam came to give people life, not to take life away from them.
  • Nasihah means transparency. Most people equates it to advice. What nasihah means is that what you have in your heart, you say it on your tongue.
  • Ahmad Shawki, a poet in Egypt has a collection of poetry known as Diwan al-Shawkiyah. There is a story in the diwan about a black crow named Nujur. The community of black crows built their own kingdom. They had a king and built a palace for the king. The king of the crow like all wise kings, had many assistants who come and go but he kept one confidante, usually the doorman. His name was Nudur. Nudur said to the King: "O King, you are a descendant of the solehin, of pious kings and you always taught us to appreciate nasihah." Shaykh Ninowy said when giving nasihah we should first start with the good news, then give the advice. Nudur further said to the King: "I saw ants going around the palace and went to the root of the tree where our palace is. Your majesty, send your army to take them out before we all die." On hearing this, the Sultan of the crow laughed, saying: "Look how strong my wing and my beak is. You asked me to consider the insignificant ants?" But these ants were eating the root of the tree. One day a big storm came and uprooted the tree. "O Nudur, do something!" said the Sultan. Nudur replied: "Your majesty, don't ask Nudur. I don't deal with the insignificant ants."
  • The moral of the story said Shaykh Ninowy is that the awliya, what they are trying to tell you is advice, yet you think it is insignificant. What they are trying to advise you are keys for your salvation and success. The sadiqin, they have truthfulness, they have transparency. If you refuse to listen, "the ants" will eat up your ikhlas and iman without you knowing it.
  • Imam Shafie, Imam Abu Haniffa and all the great scholars all give words of nasihah, so open the ears of your heart. Listen. Look for the spiritual ants in your life that are robbing you from your time and iman.
  • If you don't take heed, you will only have a body without ruh. We need ruh. Iblis refused to make sujud to Adam because he thought he was better than Adam who was made from clay. But Allah never asked Iblis: 'what were you created from?' Allah upon completing the creation of Adam breathed into him ruh. That ruh is what made you superior. You are a human being because of the ruh. Iblis never got the ruh. Man is not just clay. That is why Allah asked Iblis to make sujud to Adam. So live with your soul and not your body!                       

Allahu a'lam. May I be forgiven for any errors and omissions in my notes.
The majlis was hosted by HAK/Amanah Hawi Al-Khairat.

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