English translation of Maktubat Imam Rabbani (selective 100) | Mujaddid Alf sani | Sheikh Ahmad sirhindi

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Iman, worships and the haram

This letter, written to the mother of Mir Muhammad Numan, gives some advice.

The first advice is to correct the belief in accordance with the tenets which the Ahl as- sunnat savants teach in their books. For, it is this group only that will be saved from Hell. May Allahu ta'ala give plenty of rewards for the work of those great people! [Scholars of the four Madhhabs who have reached the grade of ijtihad and the great scholars educated by them are called scholars of Ahl as-sunnat.] After correcting the belief (iman), it is necessary to perform the acts of worship communicated in the knowledge of fiqh, i.e. to do the commandments of the Shariat and to abstain from what it prohibits. One should perform namaz five times each day without reluctance or slackness, observing its conditions and tadil-i arkan.

He who has as much money as nisab [see article 41] should give zakat.

Imam-i azam Abu Hanifa says, "Also, it is necessary to give the zakat of gold and silver which women use as ornaments."

A person with iman should not waste his time [playing musical instruments]. He should not waste his precious life even on unnecessary mubahs. It is certainly necessary not to waste it on the haram. We should not busy ourselves with taghanni, singing or songs. We should not be deceived by the pleasure they give our nafses. These are poisons mixed with honey and covered with sugar.

One should not commit giybat. Giybat is haram. [Giybat means to talk about a Muslim's or a Zimmi's [The Islamic religion recognize two kinds of countries in the world: 1) The Muslim country called "Dar-ul-Islam"; 2) The country of disbelievers called "Dar-ul-harb," Those disbelievers who live in "Dar-ul-Islam" and who have submitted to pay the jizya [see article 19], are called "ahl-i-zimmat" or 'zimmi." They live comfortably and peacefully possessing Muslims' rights and freedom fully. They perform their worships freely. See our book "The Religion Reformers in Islam," chapter No. 49] secret faults behind his back. It is necessary to tell Muslims about the faults of Harbis [Those disbelievers who live in Dar-ul-harb and who are not under Islam's authority are called "Harbis."] and bidat holders, about the sins of those who commit these crimes in public, about the evil deeds of those who torment Muslims. Such efforts help Muslims to be aware of their harm. Also to reveal those who slander and intentionally misrepresent Islam in their writings is not a sin; this is not giybat (backbiting). Radd-ul Mukhtar: 5- 263)].

Namima, that is, gossip, carrying words among Muslims, should not be done. It has been declared that various kinds of torments will be inflicted on those who commit these two kinds of sins. Also, it is haram to lie and to slander; this must be avoided. These two evils were haram in every religion. Their punishments are very heavy. It is very thawab [Muslims will be rewarded in the next world for all their pious actions which they have done in the world. The rewards which Muslims will be given in the next world are called "thawab." The word is used as an adjective as well as a noun. For example, when we say that an action is very thawab, it means that Allah will give many rewards for that action.] to conceal Muslims' defects, not to spread their secret sins and to forgive them. One should pity one's inferiors, those under one's command, [such as, wives, children, students, soldiers] and the poor. One should not reproach them for their faults. One should not hurt or beat or swear at those unfortunate people for trivial reasons. [One should not violate anybody's religion, property, life, honor or chastity, and should pay one's debts to individuals and to the state. It is haram to take or give a bribe. Only, it would not be bribery to give money unwillingly in order to shun being tormented by a cruel ruler or under duress. However, it is haram to accept something offered as such. Everybody should see his own defects, and should every hour think of the faults which he has committed against Allahu ta'ala. He should always bear in mind that Allahu ta'ala does not hurry in punishing him, nor does He cut off his sustenance. [The orders compatible with the Shariat of parents and of the government must be obeyed, but the ones incompatible with the Shariat must not be rejected or opposed outright. We should not cause fitna (discord and trouble). See the 123 rd letter in the second volume of the book Maktubat-i Mathumiyya.]

After correcting the belief and doing the commands of fiqh, one should spend all one's time remembering Allahu ta'ala. One should continue remembering and mentioning Allahu ta'ala as the great men of religion have communicated. By feeling hostility towards all the things that will prevent the heart from remembering Allahu ta'ala, that is, from dhikr, one should abstain from them. The more you adhere to the Shariat, the more delicious it will be to remember Him. As indolence and laziness increase while obeying the Shariat, that flavor will gradually decrease, eventually vanishing altogether. [One should not believe the slanders concocted by the enemies of Islam and should be extremely wakeful not to fall into their traps.] What should I write more than what I have written already? It will be enough for a reasonable person. May Allahu ta'ala bless us all with doing the things that will make us attain saadat-i abadiyya! 
What is sweet besides remembering Him whatsoever;
Is poison for the soul, even if it were sugar!