SUFISM IS A TRAINING PROGRAM :
Part 1 of 4: ZIKR OF ALLAH
Allah says in the Qur’an-i-Karim (17:13), “And for each person, We have tied what they are supposed to do on their neck as a sign for them.”
The Sufis believe that this is zikr. Our bodies are doing zikr all the time, whether we are aware of this or not. Your heart is saying “Allah, Allah” with every beat, and your lungs are saying “Hu, Hu” with every breath. Everything in the universe is doing zikr all the time as well, whether we know this or not. In this way, Allah showed us the path to the target. The target is Allah. Then, Allah created distractions in order to separate the sincere from the insincere and to test the true believers to see who would keep their attention on Allah and who would become distracted.
“There is no compulsion in din [way of doing righteous deeds]. Surely the sensible, mature path is distinct from the sinful path. So whoever disbelieves in taghut [false objects of worship] and believes in Allah has indeed held the firmest grip that will never break. Allah is Sami [Hearing] and Alim [All-Knowing].” (Qur’an 2:256, translation by the author)
The rules and regulations are very important, because they are the ones that will keep you at the door. “Hold onto the rope of Allah,” means hold onto these rules and regulations. When our Prophet (peace be upon him) was riding on a donkey, he wanted to be thankful, so he said, “Allah, thank You very much for making this animal subservient to me, although I do not have this power.” When you say a prayer in Arabic, that our Prophet (pbuh) said, be sure you know its meaning.
Allah made a lot of things. Some attract His blessings and some His wrath, or curse. Doing the right thing, as Allah wishes, draws Allah’s blessings. For example, cleanliness attracts Allah’s blessings, dirtiness attracts Allah’s bacteria. He then sends His cleaning crew in. They are not good for you: bacteria, germs, sicknesses, Satan, jinn. They all come for the dirt.
My point is, do not become extreme. Just because Sharia is important, do not go to the extreme. Do not get stuck there. There are three more doors for you to go through: Tariqa, Haqiqa, Ma’rifa. But Sharia is a must. That is a fardz. You have to do it.
How do you do the Sharia? You have to do the Sharia with understanding. You have to come to an understanding about the concepts of Allah first. You do not want to do something blindly. We need to ask, “Why are we doing it? Why do we want to wash our hands and feet before we go to the prayer?” You have to know this. You have to believe in what you are doing. You have to do this with the Prophet’s (pbuh) understanding.