Regarding Sufism – Ask Shaykh YQ #141

Yasir Qadhi


Channel: Yasir Qadhi


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Our next question is from sister or brother said jurak. I don't know if it's a sister, brother, I apologize. So Jarrett from Kashmir.

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And the question is about Sufism. And the question is that some people accept it and follow it, whereas others criticize it. And so I am asked by this sister this brother, can I shed some light on this issue?

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107 mean poverty in region? No, he lay him first. No recovery in

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So just like our previous question, this is a theological one. And again, the as I said, Today, I'm going to be doing theological questions. And so when being asked about Sufism, and again, so much can be said, and time is limited. The term souf, the term Sufi ism, or Sufi, most likely it comes from the term wool souf in Arabic truth. And that's because the earliest practitioners of the soul wolf would dress in wool, because it was the cheapest and the core system material. And that automatically gives you an understanding of who the the early material with our Sophie's work, there were people who wanted to live, simplistic, ascetic lives, not involved in the luxuries of this

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world. Now, there's a lot to be said about Sufism. But one could say that the main thrust of Sufism is that they view the world in a very different manner. They view that the existence of Allah subhana wa tada is the only real existence and that the human soul is somehow linked with maybe even connected to an emanation of the essence of a lot of how know what the ILO and that the goal is to have that human souls somehow reunited either in the proximity or maybe even you know, with Allah subhanho wa Taala. The goal is then for the human soul, to then, you know, go back to its origin because the origin is Allah subhanho wa Taala, and to be reunited with a lot. And that goal is being

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hampered by this world around us by the body that we are in by the lusts and the pleasures of this world. And therefore, what needs to be done, which is what the soul wolf does, is that we need to break all of our connections with our bodily desires, our tie, look with other than Allah subhanho wa Taala with extrinsic objects, and we need to allow our spirit to pass through this world with as little attachments as possible so that when death happens, so that the soul will then with ease move on to its divine destiny, its origin, and that is the oneness with Allah subhanho wa Taala. That's a very simplistic way of looking at the Sabbath and early Sophie's. They were generally speaking

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people who renounced this world, people like Ibrahim, even Adam, or RBI that we that they live very simplistic and ascetic lives, there's even a contempt for the world, you just don't want to do anything with it. There's a

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sense of antagonism towards the richness of this world towards good food and good ones. You don't want any of that you don't want to corrupt the body because the notion there's a tension between the body and the soul, and if you obey the body, you're going to corrupt the soul. So this notion of tension between the body and the soul is a very Sufi concept. And this notion of not adhering to or not allowing bodily desires to be given any type of weight or priority, the less priority given it is the better for mankind. And it is possible to divide Sufism, again, very simplistically, I'm being very simplistic here. One can divide Sufism into two primary strands again, you can divide it

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into many but for our purposes, we'll say two primary stance strands and this goes back to very early the solo if you have a strand that I will call philosophical, Sufism, the more technical term is mon ism. Some have called it Well, there's many terms to be called, but let's just call it philosophical Sufism. And by this, I mean a strand of Sufism, that understands that claims that there is no existence other than a lot of Hana hautala that we don't actually exist. It's not a denial of the pleasures of man. It's a denial of the reality of men. It is the claim that in reality our bodies are not really there. And that there is nothing in existence other than Allah subhana wa

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tada and the technical term for this is mon ism. Later on it is called latitude. Whoo.

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That there's one existence. And people like in early Islam by Aziz Boise that Swami, and others, like her Lodge and others, like have been out or be they followed this strand and there's a very heavy emphasis on the negation of the illusion of any existence other than Allah subhana wa sallam, there's some really interesting or bizarre phrases like an Khaled would say, I am. And I am Eliza gel. And he would say that there's nothing in my job other than he other than Allah. So these phrases were interpreted as basically blasphemy to everybody else, because they are not on the same wavelength. And frankly, that wavelength is not coming from the Quran and Sunnah. But anyway, they

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interpreted these phrases to be completely, you know, blasphemy, and some of these like a large, were even executed for what they considered to be blasphemy.

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So that is one strand of Sufism. And, frankly, I'm not a big fan of that strand. And I do believe that that strand has exceeded

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the spectrum of tolerance, let me put it that way. They have gone beyond what we can theologically tolerate. And that we should say that that interpretation of life and of existence really does not stem from the Quran and Sunnah. And understandably, when people go around claiming that, you know, there's nothing in my film other than a law or this and that then, understandably, the average Muslim community is very perturbed and finds this problematic and, and that should not be done. So I'm not, you know, too sympathetic to that strand. The other strand of Islam of sorry of Sufism, let's call it experiential. Sufism. The emphasis on this strand was to train the soul, it wasn't to

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deny the existence of other than a law. Sorry, yeah, that's correct. Because the first strand denies that anything is exists other than a law so that Allah hi Lola, for the first strand becomes law with Judah or llamo, Judah Illallah. That's how they interpret the kalama that there is no existence other than the existence of a law. So we don't really exist or nothing really, that this is all an illusion, what we see around us you cannot, but it's an illusion. It's not really there. That's the first round. And, frankly, that to be technical that goes back to something called Gnosticism. But that's beyond the scope of our q&a here. But so, the second strand, which is something we can

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actually deal with a little bit more, let's call it experiential. Sufism. The emphasis here is not on the philosophy of Mormonism. It is on the training of the soul, and it is on their version of maintaining a purity in this world until the time of death. And we have a lot of early CEU fees that were on this path people like Junaid, people like Elmo huseby these are people that clearly their understanding of the soul is very different than that of haylage. And we have to be careful that sometimes the critics of the soul Wolf, they mix and match between all of these strands one of the biggest problems is Sufism is not one interpretation. Sufism is like a huge spectrum, and you cannot

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criticize one aspect of the spectrum spectrum. And then say all of Sufism does this this is frankly a slander against the entire notion of Sufism. If you take one strand or one extremist person, and then say all Sophie's that's just wrong and it's an Islamic and it's unethical, and it's unacademic, we don't do this, unfortunately, all too often, one finds some of the critics of the soul of do this, they find a video clip of somebody you know, so that strand, for example, is also very mystical in terms of its outward you know, so going round and round let's say right, the Whirling Dervishes and again, that's a oneness they're going round and onto they lose themselves the the

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purpose of By the way, the Whirling Dervishes it's actually an actual sector of the Sufi user, but it for the Sufi is the goal is to lose yourself. Literally the goal is to just you keep on twirling for so many hours, you're not, you know, obviously your mind ceases to function. Normally you think you're in a state of ecstasy, that's what they're trying to achieve here. Right? Or you might find other manifestations of, you know, extreme movements that we call dancing, but they would not call dancing extreme movements, where the notion is they've lost rationality, because they've achieved that union they're looking for with the lesser bandwidth data, somebody sends you a WhatsApp clip or

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it's on YouTube as they Oh look, that's what Sufism is. No, please brothers and sisters stop doing this stop extrapolating from one video clip about the entire movement would you like it if the far right takes one clip from some extremist Muslim and then says all Muslims do this we don't like it. Then why then do you do it when you criticize another sector on other interpretation? You can say this group of Sufism that's what they do. You're very accurate. Maybe one group does it okay. You can say this particular buddy. Of course, this particular person encourages this action Okay, that's fair. But to then extrapolate all of the soul of this is just a slander will lie. It is a slander

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the majority

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80 of the people of the soul have do not move in radical matters, they do not go whirling round around, they do not, you know, they don't do these types of things that are unfortunate some Muslims make fun of this is a small, small group. And we say that's not, you know, mainstream to solve, nor is it mainstream Islam. So the point being that the second strand of Sufism, which is what I call experiential, Sufism, what they want to do is they want to train the soul on the journey to Allah, they say that there's a path or a buddy to Allah subhana wa Tada. And they want to encourage people to understand that there's a path, you have to know there's the path, and you have to want to join

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the people on the path. So you become the seeker or the salic, you want to be joined the movement, you want to get onto board, so that you know, there's the movement and then the seeker or the salic is then talked about various stations of the path, these are called macom, or my nozzle. So, these are stations that you have to go to this station, then this station, these are not actual paths, this is the state of the mind here. And then you have when you reach certain stations, you will experience certain spiritual ecstasy is called a while and at every stage, and at every point, you then go to a different level, and eventually, if you follow the path properly, so then you will

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achieve you know, the highest level and your soul will basically have achieved that sense of union the sense of union now, whether you actually achieve union or not depends on which strand of the soul You are following. But the claim is that when you achieve that actual you know, sense of union, then the the illusion of this world has been lifted from you, and that's called cache, the cache is the lifting of the veil. And you have achieved oneness with a law which is find out which is find out so your soul has now been reunited with its origin with its maker. And this is called the concept of the find out now, and again, how its interpreted varies from strand to strand. So the

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point being, as I said, that you have from the very beginning two strands of Sufism, we are more interested in the experiential one, because that's something we can actually relate to. and experiential to so both they view themselves as being the manifestation of the third category of the idea of God, Islam, Mr. ersan, that group says, We are the gifts and status, that's what his son is. And their critics would argue, well, that's your interpretation of your sign, and we have our interpretation of your son. So they say that his son is what deals with the heart, and eemaan. And Islam deals with the body and the tongue, this the outer rituals, and ehsaan is the science of the

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world, and Islam and in any man is the science of the brain and of the body. So they have this understanding there as well. And now the question arises, how does one walk on this path? How does one achieve that success to get to the end of the path, so generally speaking, mainstream too. So wolf says you cannot walk alone, you need a guide, the path is too complicated. And it's not, it's just very difficult, you don't wander into a forest all on your own, you take a guide. And so they say, you have to find the kingdom of God or a buzzer or a peer who has already done all of this for you. And you then, you know, in most strands of the soul if you make an alliance or a treaty, or a

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beta, or a covenant, or an oath, with this buzzer or the spear, and the point is that the goal is that this person is going to take you along the path and help you to go from station to station to station until finally, you know, if you do your job properly, you know, you don't need him anymore. And you're now achieved at that at that station. And there's also this notion that there is an inner knowledge, a little melatonin, or animal botany that is not found in the books, but it is found in the experiences of your teachers in the mystical understandings of the Olia of a lot subhanho wa Taala. And so the need of a share for the buzzard is that you cannot learn what the buzzer will

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teach you except in the company except from heart to heart and not from a book the knowledge of the soul Wolf, according to them is not found in a book you cannot study it you cannot have a PhD in the soul of from their perspective. You need to experience that the soul Wolf with the share with the with the peer who has already arrived over there. And that's a version of what is called the 30th pacifism, as well as the soul is known for

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various rituals that we are even non Sufi is practice but then they take it to their own understanding Most importantly, how they do Vicar and the repetition of their liquor and the repetition of the names of Allah subhanho wa Taala these are well known practices of various Sufi groups. So maybe to repeat a certain Vicar 99 times or you know, repeat a surah you know, 11 times or

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To have a weird what is called the wazifa. While leafa wazifa, you know you have a wazifa that you go, every time I treasure, you do this at malherbe, you do that and you have a different wild leaf or wazifa. And then when you do this for a few months, your boozer or your teacher will then say you've passed stage one now move on to stage two, and you're given another than stage three, you're given another and it goes on and on and on. So, all of these are associated with various Sufi understandings as well some manifestations or strands of Sufism. Some not all are also interested or take to devotional poetry and poetry that is accompanied by musical instruments as well. And most

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famously, in Indian Pakistan is you have of course, the Qawwali movements with the Kabaddi manifestations of various

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Sufi karate, by the way, its origin is actually Sufi devotional poetry. So it's a very Sufi manifestation. And of course, this is known to all Indian Pakistanis Bengalis, they understand they know what is oily it is a part of Indian culture very short. And but but what I'm trying to say it's not a cultural thing, as much as it is a religious It is actually a manifestation of a type of of what is called Samadhi or a ritual ceremony, which is meant to be rewarded by a law and it is meant to help guide you in your path and your journey to Allah subhana wa tada and of course, even that is subject because other speakers will disagree and says should there should not be done so, anyway,

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there's a lot to be said trying to summarize so much into a one you know, brief q&a, do realize by the way that

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giving by to a chef and following what is called buddy a call is not necessary to be a Sufi because one can also categorize Sufism into two buddies versus non buddy, buddy aka Sufi ism, it has a specific hierarchy and you give back to a particular shift. So you have the sohara word the you have the Chishti you have the DD, right, you have the T Johnny, you have the car, the rhetorical these are career consumerism, these are well known hierarchy and you will then find the chef and you will give back to the chef, the shareholder and assess you, you will follow the chair He will guide you along maybe even you will not undertake any life decision without asking the chef. So there is a

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very, very trusting position that you have. Unfortunately, we also know of times that has been abused when you ever you trust a person if the person turns out to be a crook, then, you know, that's the reality as well. But anyway, we should not throw out. I mean, from their perspective, they will say this happens with any organization just because some bad apples exist doesn't mean the entire, you know, barrel is bad, but that is 30 of consumerism. There's also non budhia consumerism which is becoming very popular in our times I would say that, historically, it wasn't as popular 200 300 500 years ago, but nonparty consumerism is basically let me just read the books of the

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people of the soul of liking mama Rosati in his famous a halo Medina, which is a very mainstream Sufi text. It's not radical Sufi. It's like a very mainstream Sufi text, um, which goes over many of the primary issues of the soul. So they might read this and then bring it in their daily lives. Now, again, much can be said.

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And by the way, there have also been attempts, especially in the last 200 years to reform or to revive or to reject Sufism, the most famous rejection of Sufism was by the movement of Ibn Abdul Wahab in Arabia, the nudge, the liberal movement, they rejected Sufism, the most harsh rejection in the last, you know, millennia, to be honest, and no group has been more antifa. So often, this movement, and they even consider some of the practices of the soul to be, well, most of the practices of those have they considered beta, some of them they even consider shidduch, such as, you know, veneration of the saints to an extreme level. So this is like the attempt to reject Sufism,

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you've had attempts to revive Sufism, and the most famous is the Bolivian movement of Indian Pakistan to revive that they want to now go back and basically bring back the, the the revival of the soul. And then they have also made attempts to reform from within, right, so you have the rejection, the revival than the Reformation from within, for example, shot, what do you do levy is perhaps the most famous to try to reform to sanitize to cut off some of the excesses. And perhaps one can say, I'm being a little bit simplistic here. But I think it is fair to say that the obon the movement is basically following the spirit of shall will you learn this regard, where they want to

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produce a somber an orthodox version of the soul from their perspective. And again, all of this is relative to which paradigm you are sympathetic to now.

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The sister their brother asked about what is you know, what is to be done or what is the correct or what not? And the responses I mean, depends on who you ask, obviously, you want my advice. You're asking me, you emailed me. And by the way, somehow I'm very touched that I get so many emails from Kashmir and my hearts in my heart and my daughters go to the people of Kashmir for all of their struggles, and I have to say that I am very pleasantly surprised by them.

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Many, many emails I get from the province of Kashmir they watch on YouTube and some of them say that we have internet problems, but we try to whenever there's internet, you know, we try to watch your videos and then, you know, we don't have not able to watch because the government pulls it away from us and ally just is just to know that there is so much struggle and pain and the occupation and the clamp down in the the pellet bullets that have blinded hundreds or 10s of 1000s. And the riots I mean, well, you're in our drives or people of Kashmir and it really touches me that so many emails come from that province. And you know, this one as well. very eager to learn the religion of Islam,

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summarizing what he or she has written. So, you wanting my advice about this issue, and I will say that, firstly, as a lay Muslim, stick with your enema, and don't get involved in the business of refutations and debates. You can disagree with other groups without being disagreeable. What I mean by this, you can disagree and still smile and shake their hands and be fellow Muslims, right? You don't have to agree on everything. You follow what you think is the best you follow your group you follow your chef that you really feel is the most pure and the most knowledgeable and the closest silicone on asuna and leave the rest if you're a lay Muslim. Also be very careful. And never ever

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follow those groups of Roma or people that are promoting hatred of other people who bow their head to Allah subhanho wa Taala. There are a llama and preachers in every sect whose primary focus is the other sect. Their primary antagonism is towards others who say the Kadima face the Qibla memorize the Koran lower their head to Allah, but they disagree about a certain issue. My advice to you avoid hate preachers avoid preachers who are preaching sectarianism, who has every second third statement is a refutation of that group in that group and that group in that group, so panela, you will not build your Eman by destroying the amount of others in your eyes. That's not how you build your Eman

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do not follow preachers whose emphasis by their preaching is the negation of other understandings of Islam. Yes, sometimes certain understandings need to be refuted. But that should not be the priority. The priority is you build your own ego on the priorities you worship, allow yourself you have your own silo, your own Zipcar, your own rituals, your own Koran, any chef that emphasizes this, and once in a while, correct others that's a good sign. That's a good sign. But any chef whose main preaching and teaching is to cause you to hate other Muslims and other people and whatnot. That's not the religion of our Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam. Now also I want to say that you

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know, you are writing to me from the province of Kashmir, surely dear brother or dear sister, you understand the importance of unity, you understand that? It makes no sense for the Muslim community that is already under siege, literally unreceived for the last 70 years, and under army siege and military siege for the last 20 or 30 years. It makes no sense for the center fee and the Deobandi in the Burrell V in the earlier had these and the Giamatti other than to fighting each other. You clearly have an outside enemy, literally, you see them social panela do not preach hatred amongst yourselves, and learn to agree to disagree. I'm not saying all of these differences are trivial. I

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never said this. I'm not saying we should ignore. I'm saying we have to learn to agree to disagree. So you know what, I have my way of doing Islam. You know, I know you're sincere. You have your way Allah will judge us and I mean, you know, and if you want to have a pleasant conversation, if you have knowledge, and you know the evidences and you want to have a pleasant conversation, no hatred, no animosity, but explain you know, this is what I believe this why I believe it the Quran says this asuna says that what is your evidence if you're able to have a pleasant conversation without hating somebody else, then go for it if you have the knowledge, and you have the other bendy taqwa to do

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so, otherwise dear brother or dear sister, for really just it's not worth our time to make this such a big issue. The so wolf is a very broad term and with this, I conclude the soul wolf is a very broad term. It is impossible to praise or to criticize all of the soul, Wolf, listen to this carefully. Anybody who generically praises all of the soul work or criticizes all of the soul, Wolf, frankly, I'm trying to be nice here. They don't know what they're talking about. You cannot the soul wolf is too broad. And you have to get down to the specifics and nitty gritty. There are aspects of the soul off that are pure 100% upon the sooner the scar after fetcher, who says you should not do

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that. Go and find out what the prophets have said and sit there after phidget 200 long 200 days

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Israel. So we're reading Quran in the middle of the night. That is the essence of the soul of Morocco. Always looking at your heart that is the soul of Vicar your tongue should always be doing because that is the soul of right in other Toba, who Sure, tawakkol. All of this is the soul of this is the reality of the soul. So if that is the soul, Wolf, then we should all be upon the people of the soul. And then there are other things that definitely raise your eyebrows, to have a specific wazifa. You know, we're getting into a gray area, and I can understand some people think is permissible. Some people think it's not, you know, to recite a certain class 11 times at 9am, for

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example, I mean, you know, I see why they're doing it. And I personally don't want to do that I'm not going to make a big deal about this. And I respectfully disagree, respectfully disagree, but that's what they do. And that's their version of the ticket. And I think that you know, that I don't personally

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find that what I want to do myself, I want to follow what the prophet system did as much as possible. That's my personal way of doing things from their perspective. They're saying, What's wrong with reciting certain classes, there been times it worked for my share? It should work for me and I see their perspective, I respectfully disagree. And then there's a red line. And that red line is to believe that Allah is within us or to stop Trump following the *tier. There is no tail. So wolf without the Shetty or any group that tells you you don't have to follow the shadia forget the soul of they're not Muslims. I'm just being blunt here. Any group that says you don't have to follow

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the Sharia, you have now reached the state and there are very small fringe movements like this. And, and then again, I mean, I have to draw the line somewhere. I personally really do not find it comfortable when you go to the point of venerating another being to the point of asking that being for your needs, to the point of calling out to that being for what you want. Really, I have to draw the line there. And I say that that is not something that should be done. It is dangerous. You're opening up the door that is very, very dangerous when you're going to call the Olia for your daily needs for forgiveness, I would have been not with the will and this is not I mean, I can understand

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the argument that it is shipped and I can understand the argument that it is wrong and steppingstone to should both of these arguments have validity to them. But definitely they are not sooner. And definitely This is wrong. So if you have groups that are telling you to make do out or call out to the Olia for your needs, if you have groups that tell you to bow down and do such the to a grave, we have to draw the line say no, no, no, no, this is not any type of the soul that we can tolerate. There is the soul of that I can tolerate there is the soul of that we can agree to disagree. And you have your way and I have my way, generally speaking mainstream kausalya into Sophie, Rita Hello

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muddy and you fall what is in there, or even mainstream buddy, but also if you follow the mainstream of the shoddy or the caudry 30 or whatnot, and they're telling you to do at God and quote and whatnot, I understand and a shallow there's piety, there's a man, I personally don't, you know, that's not the way I have been trained and taught in my experiences. And I have never felt the need to go down that route. But I can see, other people have had different experiences and I don't view them as being able to be evil people if they choose that path, but we have to have lines and inshallah I hope we can all agree that of the lines that we should not do is to invoke other than

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Allah subhanho wa Taala or to prostrate to any type of object that is, you know, other than Allah azza wa jal, you know, or to, you know, to do these types of movements that demean the dignity of our faith, you know, which some of the movements do the twirling and the motions of jumping up and down becoming ecstatic and or these are things that I find very problematic, and I do not, I just can't be quiet and they need to be said that, you know, this is not what the prophet system did, or the Sahaba did, and we should keep our religion dignified. Nonetheless, when all is said and done, there are elements of the soul wolf that are very good and pure, such as Vicar and morale club and

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all of these things. And so if a person takes these concepts and reads about them in the Quran and in the Sunnah, and by the way, one of the best books is the other side of hate in my opinion the other side of him go read this book by mama no way it's in every single language of the Muslim world and read the chapters about the Coleman this and let's read all of these chapters, and then follow that and if you ask me, that is real too. So often that is the reality of your son. And if you do this, then you have maintained safety and purity and you have followed the so wolf of the desk yet or on the following of the Koran, and the sooner and with this inshallah die we come to the

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conclusion of today's q&a Until next week, Chuck maloca Santa Monica rahmatullah wa barakato.