21 — THIRD VOLUME, 105th LETTER

This letter, written in response to a letter from Shaikh Hasan-i Berkî, encourages to recover the forgotten sunnats and to avoid bid’ats.

I begin to write this letter with the Basmala. May hamd (praise and gratitude) be to Allâhu ta’âlâ. I send my salâms to and invocations for the good people chosen by Allâhu ta’âlâ. I very much rejoiced to read the letter from my brother Shaikh Hasan. Valuable pieces of knowledge and ma’rifats were written in it. When I understood them, I became very happy. Thanks be to Allâhu ta’âlâ, all the knowledge and kashfs which you wrote are correct. They are all agreeable with the Qur’ân and hadîths. So are the right beliefs of the savants of Ahl as-sunnat. May  Allâhu ta’âlâ keep you on the right way. May He bless you with attaining high grades! You write that you have been striving to extirpate bid’ats, which are so widespread. At such a time as this, when the darknesses of bid’ats is so prevalent, it is a very great blessing to bring about the annihilation of one bid’at and to recover one of the forgotten sunnats. Our Prophet ‘sall-Allâhu ’alaihi wa sallam’ states in a sahîh hadîth: “He who recovers one of my forgotten sunnats will receive as many thawâbs as a hundred martyrs will receive!” The greatness of this deed must be inferred from this hadîth. But, when doing this, there is an important subtlety to be observed. That is, while trying to recover one sunnat, we should not cause any fitna; one goodness should not give birth to a variety of problems or evils, for we live in the latest time. We are in a century when Muslims are weak and forlorn.

[It is written in Hadîqa, in its chapter dealing with fitna: “Fitna means to cause faction among Muslims, to cause them trouble, harms and sins, to instigate the people to revolt against the State. It is wâjib to obey the government even if it is a cruel one.” In Berîqa, in page ninety-one, it is stated: “It is wâjib to obey the orders of the ruler in charge, if they are in agreement with Islam, even if he is as low and despicable and common as an Abyssinian slave. If his orders are not agreeable with Islamic principles, it is still better to obey him, not to cause fitna and fasâd.” Also, it will cause fitna for men of religion to give people fatwâs that they will not be able to carry out. So is the case with telling a villager or an old person that he cannot perform namâz without knowing tajwîd.[1] Since it has become impossible for such people to learn it, they may cease from namâz altogether. In fact, there are those (savants) who give the fatwâ that namâz can be performed without tajwîd. This fatwâ is weak, yet it is better than not performing namâz at all. Considering that it is permissible to follow another Madhhab when there is haraj, we should not produce hardships for the ignorant or the incapable. The book Sharh-ul-ma’fuwât explains this fact. Please see the fourth chapter of the fourth fascicle of Endless Bliss! We should not prevent them from visiting graves and tombs or from votive offerings for the Awliyâ or from asking for blessings by visiting  their graves. We should not deny the fact that the Awliyâ have karâmât (pl. form of karâmat) also after their death, for there are fatwâs that say that it is permissible (jâiz).[2] [In Berîqa, in page 270, it states: “It is permissible to invoke Allâhu ta’âlâ through Prophets or pious Muslims, or to ask them to intercede, because a mu’jiza or karâmat does not cease with death. Ramli[3] also explained that a karâmat will not become void by death. Ajhûrî[4] informs that the power of Awliyâ will increase after their death, and when alive, they are like swords in their sheath, whereas the sword is drawn when they die.”] We should not give advice that will cause fitna. If he who has power and authority does not advise, it will be Mudâhana, which is harâm. If he does not advise lest he will cause fitna though he has enough power it will be Mudârâ, which is permissible. In fact, it will be mustahab (an action which is liked by Allâhu ta’âlâ). To use power is the duty of state authorities. Those who ridicule and harm Islam should not be advised. Advice should not be thrown to the teeth of a person, but it should be given under the guise of a general comment, i.e. indirectly. We should not quarrel with anybody. A person came to Rasûlullah. Upon seeing him from the distance, he (Rasûlullah) said, “He is the worst of his tribe.” When he entered the room, he met him with a smile, praised him. When he was gone, Hadrat ’Âisha asked Rasûlullah why. He said, “The worst of people is the person who is not approached in order to be safe from his harm.” He was a munâfiq presiding over some Muslims. In order to protect Muslims against his harm, Rasûlullah implemented mudârâ. Hence, it is not ghiybat (backbiting) to tell others about a person whose sins, indecencies  nd cruelty are public, that is, notorious among people, and that mudârâ is permissible in order to be safe from his harm. It is declared in a hadîth in Kunûz, by ’Abd-ur-Râ’ûf-i Munâwî: “I was sent in order to apply mudârâ for people.” It is called Mudârâ to give what is worldly in order to protect the religion and the world. It is called Mudâhana to give the religion in order to obtain what is worldly. To please someone’s heart through soft words, favours and even lies is to give what is worldly. When seeing Muslims’ grave sins, [the ones which they have committed secretly,] it is necessary to conceal them. It is qazf to tell them to others. It is a graver sin to expose them to other people out of supposition or slander.”]

Do your best to educate and to bring up so as to be wellmannered and well-learned the late Mawlânâ Ahmad’s ‘rahmatullâhi ta’âlâ ’alaih’ children. Teach them spiritual and bodily adabs! Be an example for everybody you know and meet and even all your brothers-in-Islam there by obeying Islam and holding fast to the Sunnat! Tell everybody about the harms of committing bid’ats and of disbelief! May Allâhu ta’âlâ bless you with the lot of doing good deeds! May He give success to those who strive for the spreading of the Islamic religion and for teaching it to young people! May He protect us and our children against going astray by being deceived by the enemies of religion and virtue, by those who strive to demolish the Islamic religion and steal the îmân and ethical values of the pure youth, and by those who try to deceive the young people through lies and slanders! Âmîn.

[Imâm-i Rabbânî ‘rahmatullâhi ’alaih’, in his 68th letter in the second volume of Maktûbât, quotes a hadîth-i-sherîf which states: “Until the earth is covered by kufr, so that kufr is prevalent and disbelief is practised everywhere, Hadrat-i Mahdî will not come.” Hence; before Hadrat-i Mahdî, kufr and disbelief will cover the entire earth and Muslims and the Islamic religion will be gharîb (forlorn; with no one to help and support them). Our Prophet ‘sall-Allâhu ’alaihi wa sallam’ informed us that towards the end of the world Muslims will become gharîb, and he said: “Worship done during the time of herj[5] and fitna will be similar to an immigration [from Mekka to Medina] to me.” Everybody knows that minor police or military operations  executed during turmoil or commotion are incomparably more valuable than large-scale military manoeuvres conducted during times of peace. Heroism when there is no fitna will have almost no value at all. Thus, the most valuable of all prayers are those performed during times of fitna. If you want to be among people saved on the Day of Rising and be valuable at such a time, do the things which Allâhu ta’âlâ has approved of and the things He likes! Grasp the Sunnat-i seniyya, that is, the path of Muhammad ‘sall-Allâhu ’alaihi wa sallam’. Do nothing incompatible with this way. Ashab-i Kahf ‘rahmatullâhi ta’âlâ ’alaihim ajma’în’, by immigrating when fitna became widespread, attained a high rank. You are the Ummat (followers) of Muhammad ‘alaihissalâm’, the best Ummat of all. Do not waste your time in lahw and la’b, that is, in games and fun. Do not spend your time kicking a ball, like children!]

My son! When fitna is widespread and fasâds are rife, it is time to repent and make istighfâr. You must keep aloof and not participate in fitna. Fitna is growing and spreading each day. Our beloved Prophet ‘sall-Allâhu ’alaihi wa sallam’ stated: “As the Doomsday approaches, fitna will increase. It will resemble the gathering of dusk as night begins. Many who leave their homes in the morning as Muslims, will return home as disbelievers in the evening. While they are Muslims in the evening, they will lose their faith during the night at places of amusement. During such times, to stay at home is better than being involved in fitna. Those who stay aloof are better than those who attack and lead in front. On that day, break your arrows! Leave your weapons and swords! Address everybody with a smiling face and sweet words! Do not leave your house!” This is the end of the translations from Maktûbât. Muslims should follow this advice. They should not be deceived by the books and fake interpretations that are harmful and encourage fitna and rebellion and which are written by ignorant heretics and lâmadhhabîs, such as Mawdûdî and Sayyid Qutb. Jihâd means the war conducted by the state with armed forces against enemies, against unbelievers, and against corrupt people. Whether the State is an Islamic state or a non-Muslim state, whether it administers justice or perpetrates persecution, a rebellion against one’s State, which in most cases entails civil and fratricidal bloodshed can by no means be crowned with the appelation ‘jihâd’. It can only be called fitna, and fasâd. Our Prophet ‘sall-Allâhu ’alaihi wa sallam’ said: “May Allâhu ta’âlâ damn those who cause fitna.” Muslims do not rebel against the State. They do not take part in fitna and rebellions. They do not disobey the laws. [Ahl-i sunnat savants were never involved in politics, never accepted governmental duties, and they always advised state staff with their writings and words and in this way showed them the correct and fair ways of ruling. Some ignorant religious people joined in state affairs by deviating from the way of the Ahl-i sunnat savants; they abandoned the job of learning and teaching, which were their main duties; and thus they brought no advantages for themselves or for Muslims. Mustafa Sabri Efendi, one of the latest Ottoman Shaikh-ul-Islâms, worked for a political party named I’tilâf F›rkas›. Husamaddîn Pachali, who was a shaikh of a derghâh, wrote in his (so-called) tafsîr that the members of the political party named Ittihâd and Terakkî were praised in the Qur’ân, especially in the 111th chapter (Sûra Lahab). Musa Kâzim, Shaikh-ul-Islâm, and Mustafa Hayrî Efendi, of Urgub, were members of the political party Ittihâd and Tarakkî, and were also freemasons. Şemseddin Günaltay, of Erzincan, was a professor of the history of religions, yet after becoming a member of the Ittihâd and Tarakkî party, first he became a member of parliament and then the Prime Minister of Turkey. Yahyâ Gâlib was a shaikh of a derghâh called Ummi Sinan Tekkesi at Eyyub Sultan in Istanbul, but he went into politics, and then became the deputy of the city of K›rşehir. Mustafa Fevzi, of Akhisar, was a minister of religious affairs, but he entered a political party named Halk F›rkas›, and became a member of parliament and also the head of a committee of judges. Fehmi Efendi, the son of Ziyâuddîn Efendi, of Gümüşhane and a man of sufism, was the Mufti of Istanbul, but he joined the Halk F›rkas›, a political party of that time. Sayyid ’Abd-ul-Qâdir Efendi, who was a member of âyân [the Senate] during the time of Sultan ’Abdulhamîd Khân, and Mustafa Sabri Efendi, the last Ottoman Shaikh-ul-Islâm, were Sunnî scholars. They struggled against those venal statesmen who had sold themselves to the British, and against those men of religion who strove to demolish Islam from within.]

With no-one is worldly property, gold or silver perpetual;

To repair a ruined heart is the competence that is real.

The ephemeral earth is it called, and an ever-spinning one, too.

Mankind is a lantern, going out is its inevitable final!

 

[1] Tajwîd is the discipline dealing with how read or recite the âyats of the Qur’ân al-kerîm properly and correctly.

[2] According to Islamic scholars, ‘jâiz’, in this sense, means ‘possible’. Allâhu ta’âlâ creates everything through laws of causation which we express in terms such as ‘laws of physics (chemistry, etc.). We call this divine habit of His ‘’âdat-i-ilâhî’. Sometimes He suspends His laws of causation for the sake of some of His slaves whom He loves. Those beloved slaves of His are either Prophets or Awliyâ. When such extraordinary events take place through Prophets they are called ‘mu’jiza’. When they take place through the Awliyâ the are termed ‘karâmat’.

[3] Khayr-ud-dîn Ramlî bin Ahmad Hanafî ‘rahmatullâhi ’alaih’ (993 [1585 A.D.], Ramla – 1081 [1670], the same place).

[4] Ajhurî ’Alî Mâlikî of Egypt ‘rahmatullâhi ta’âlâ ’alaih’ (967 – 1066 [1656 A.D.]).

[5] turmoil, commoton, confusion.  

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