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

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This letter, written to Kilinjullah, who was Kilinj Khan's son, informs us about what we should avoid and what we should do.

May Allahu ta'ala bless thee with the honor of following the brilliant route guided by Muhammad Mustafa "alaihis-salatu wassalam"! O my son! This world is a testing place. Apparently, the world is decorated with false sequins. It resembles an unchaste woman. Its face is a portrait with attractively dyed hair, eye-brows, and a beauty-spot. Its appearance is sweet. It looks fresh, pretty, and crisp. Yet, in fact, it is like a corpse dabbed with fragrant perfumes. So to speak, it is a carrion, a rubbish heap beset with insects and scorpions. It is a mirage of water. It is like a poisoned sweetmeat. In essence it is ruination, and by nature it is evanescent. It is implacably ruthless towards its sympathizers and pursuers and will inflict the worst types of harm on them. He who has fallen for it is stupid, enchanted. Its lovers are fooled lunatics. He who falls for its appearance will end up in an endless disaster. He who judges by its transient flavor and skin-deep beauty will suffer eternal repentance. Sarwar-i-kainat Habib-i-Rabbil'alamin "alaihi wa 'ala alihissalawat wattahiyyat' stated: "The world and the Hereafter are irreconcilable opposites. If you please one of them, the other will take offense." This means to say that if a person pleases the world the Hereafter will be offended with him. That is, he will attain nothing in the world to come. May Allahu ta'ala protect us and you from the unfortunate state of being fond of the world and sympathizing with those people who, anxious to obtain worldly advantages, trample over their duties as human beings!

My son! You know by now that the world is extremely vicious; but what is (it that we call) "the world'? "The world' means "anything that will lure you away from Allahu ta'ala'. If one's concern for women, children, property, rank or position is excessive enough to make one forget about Allahu ta'ala, it becomes "the world'. It is for this reason that musical instruments, games, malayani, i.e. useless and vain occupations, [gambling, harmful company, porno movies, magazines and novels] are in effect "the world'. So are all sorts of learning and education that are not useful for the world to come. If such subjects as mathematics, geometry, astronomy and logic are not utilized in manners dictated by Allahu ta'ala, [that is, if they are not used for purposes such as contending with disbelievers, surpassing them, and serving humanity], dealing with these subjects is nothing but killing time, i.e. "the world'. If these subjects alone would suffice when they were learned with all their profound particulars and subtleties, then the ancient Greek philosophers [and the recent years' European and American scientists and experts] would have found the way to salvation and secured themselves against the eternal torment awaiting them in the next world.

[Experimental and scientific lessons and foreign languages that are taught in high schools and universities are useful if they are learned with the intention of serving Islam and creatures and used for this purpose. In this case it is necessary and blessed to study these subjects. It was for this purpose that our ancestors, the Muslims of Damascus, Baghdad, Samarkand and Andalusia were so advanced in all branches of science and fine arts that they always occupy first place in the world's annals. Throughout centuries, European men of knowledge and science came to the Islamic universities, specialized in their fields, and left with degrees to take pride in when back at home. The vestiges of those luminous Muslim civilizations are in the open for the world's erudites to admire.

If the sciences taught in today's colleges and universities and which cost a person his entire youth are used in a manner approved by Allahu ta'ala, they will be beneficial and will provide prosperity in this world and endless felicity in the Hereafter.

Civilization does not mean sheer scientific lore. Science and knowledge are only an instrument, a means for attaining civilization. It would be an egregious folly and a glaring mistake to look on those nations that are considerably advanced in erudition and scientific developments as civilized people without observing the areas wherein they put their scientific resources to use. The great numbers of factories, automobiles, ships, planes and atomic installations or the dazzling improvements in the new discoveries in quality as well as in quantity are not indicators of civilization. To consider these things as civilization itself would be hardly any different from looking on every person wielding a gun as a ghazi or a mujahid (a fighter for Islam). It is true that being a mujahid requires possessing the latest weaponry. Yet a person who is in possession of a weapon may equally turn out to be a highwayman.

Civilization is ta'mir-i-bilad and terfih-i-ibad, which means to rehabilitate towns and countries and to ensure that all people live in peace spiritually, mentally and physically. Accomplishment of these two objectives is possible if, and only if, Islamic cannon is followed, i.e. by obeying the commandments and prohibitions of Allahu ta'ala. The farther away from Islam, the farther behind in civilization. If the lessons taught in colleges and universities, all the scientific implements, factories and heavy industries are used for the purpose of rehabilitating countries and providing a life of comfort for people, they will be useful and cause blessings. If they are used for the devastation of countries and for the incarceration and enthrallment of people, then they will be worthless and cause sinfulness. They will be useful and they will promote civilization if, and only if, they are used in accordance with the Islamic religion. European and American intellectuals have been studying the Islamic ethics and the Islamic laws for centuries. They have been adopting and appropriating Islam's commandments and prohibitions. It is a palpable fact that they owe their present advanced status to the Islamic values and principles, of which they avail themselves even in their legislations. As a matter of fact, let us liken a nation to, say, a ship; the Islamic tenets, that is, the commandments and prohibitions of Allahu ta'ala are the executive members and the captain of this ship. All areas of knowledge and science and branches of industry, including heavy industry are the engineers of this ship. Both the captain and the engineers are necessary for the ship. A ship that lacks one of them is useless and it is doomed to annihilation.

Then, in order to regain the worldwide achievements and superiorities of our ancestors "rahmatullahi ta'ala 'alaihim ajmain', we have to retain both aspects of the Islamic knowledge, that is, on the one hand we must learn our religion well and hold fast to it, and on the other hand we must exert ourselves to equip ourselves with scientific knowledge, to keep up with the latest technical developments, to utilize these developments in the best possible way, and to exploit them in a manner agreeable with the Islamic principles. Once we achieve this, we shall attain material and spiritual maturities and set an example for all other nations; thereby the entire world will admire us and choose us their leader and protector.

It is stated in a hadith ash-Sharif: "Al-Jannatu tahta zilal-is-suyuf," which means, "Islam will subsist if we make and use effectively all sorts of weapons owned by disbelievers." Therefore, we should study science very much and make atomic bombs, rockets, radars and missiles. Otherwise, our religion will collapse. More than fourteen hundred years after being uttered, this hadith ash-Sharif guides us, today's people, to the way leading to salvation. On the other hand, the hadith ash-Sharif which states, "The religions of peoples (nations) will take after the religions of those people who govern them," commands Muslims to work hard and become superior to disbelievers. We must digest these hadith ash-Sharifs well and adhere to them with unswerving devotion.]

Our Prophet "alaihis-salatu wassalam" stated: "A person's busying himself with useless occupations and thus wasting his time is a behavior indicating that Allahu ta'ala does not like him!"

Translation of a Persian distich: 
Everything named beauty, except love of Allah, whatsoever, 
Is poisonous to the soul, even if it is made of sugar.

It has been stated (by authorized scholars) that scientific study of stars, namely astronomy, is serviceable in the determination of prayer times. In other words, astronomy (al 'ilm-i-nujum) is one of the branches of science contributory to the calculation of prayer times. However, this definition should not be misconstrued as, "Prayer times cannot be determined without the knowledge of astronomy." There is many a person who is unaware of astronomy and yet who knows prayer times better than those who have studied astronomy. The same applies to the other branches of science such as logic, mathematics and other subjects taught in high schools; if they are employed in modes enjoined by Islam, and, for instance, if al 'ilm-i-kalam is utilized in proving the fact that Islam is the sole guide to felicity and civilization, they are permissible, [and they will even cause plenty of thawab.]

If busying yourself with occupations approved by Islam keeps you from performing your religious duties termed wajib and fard (or fard), are these occupations still approved and permitted (mubah)? Of course, not! We must be reasonable. Accordingly, dealing with high school subjects before having learned Islam, iman, acts that are fard and those which are haram will keep you from acquiring these essential learning.

[It is stated as follows in the section dealing with knowledge of the book Kimya-i-saadat: Every Believer should learn a précis of the tenets of the Sunni belief (the belief of Ahl as- sunnat); this is fard. Next, he should learn two things. One of them is the knowledge concerning the heart, and the other is the knowledge on the physical level. The knowledge on the physical level has two sub-branches. One of them consists of the commandments to be observed, while the other one teaches the prohibitions that a Muslim has to avoid. The following sequence is dictated in learning the commandments: If a person converts into Islam during the morning hours, it becomes fard immediately after the arrival of noon time that he learn those acts that are fard to do during ablution and namaz. At the same time, it becomes sunnat for him to learn the acts that are sunnat (to do during ablution and namaz). When the time for evening prayer arrives, it becomes fard for him to learn that the (compulsory, or fard, section of) evening prayer consists of three rakats. When the blessed month of Ramadan arrives, it becomes fard for him to learn those tenets of fast that are fard. One year after he attains, (if he does), the nisab (the border which Islam prescribes a Muslim must financially reach in order to become canonically rich), it becomes fard for him to learn (the Islamic commandment termed) zakat. Learning (the commandment termed) hajj becomes fard when he (fulfills the conditions that make hajj compulsory for him and therefore he) is about to set out for hajj. Thus, as the time for each religious duty comes, it becomes fard-i-'ayn for him to learn it. For instance, when he wants to get married, it becomes fard for him to learn the teachings pertaining to nikah (marriage contract prescribed by Islam), conjugal duties and rights, and periods of 'udhr (menstruation) of women. If he is to engage in trade or arts, it becomes fard for him to learn the dos and don'ts of these occupations, and especially the subtle particulars of interest. If he intends to specialize in a particular branch of art, it is fard for him to major in that art and learn the up-to-date teachings concerning that art. (For instance, if he is to become a dentist, it is fard for him to first graduate from a high school and then from the dental school and then to undergo a period of initiation and, finally, to specialize. This rule applies to every branch of art, trade and agriculture. It is fard for everybody to study and learn his branch of art. It is not fard for him to learn other branches, (except, of course, those aspects of other branches overlapping his own area). In a warlike situation, it is fard-i-'ayn to learn military subjects such as weaponry, to learn science and technology only adequately enough to make up-to-date weapons and to defend your country, and it is fard-i-kifaya to specialize in them.)

So is the case with learning the acts that are haram; different people have to learn different harams, (depending on times, conditions, trends, etc.). For instance, in places, (countries, towns) where men wear garments made of silk, it is fard for those who live in these places to learn that wearing silk clothes is haram for men, and those who know this have to teach it to those who do not. (Synthetic silk is not haram for men, either.) In places where people consume alcoholic drinks and pork, violate others' rights, engage in interest and practice bribery, it is fard for those who live in these places to learn that bribery is haram. In places where women and men sit together, it is fard for those who live in such societies to learn mahram and na-mahram women and what women one is permitted to look at and what women are forbidden for one to look at. [Muslims who live in places where women and girls go out without properly covering themselves, (parts of their body which Islam commands them to cover), and where men expose their thighs, have to learn what parts of their bodies it is fard for them to cover. As it is sinful to expose these parts of the body or to look at the exposed parts of others' bodies, it is an additional sin not to know this prohibition.]

It is fard-i-'ayn for every man and every woman to learn the knowledge concerning the heart, that is, al 'ilm-i-akhlaq. For example, it is fard-i-'ayn for every Believer to learn that it is haram to foster malice such as hiqd, which means "to bear a grudge', hasad, [which means the feeling you have when you wish that the qualities or possessions that someone else has belonged to you instead of others. If you wish that you could have the same qualities and possessions and do not mind others' having them, too, it is not hasad; it is ghibta (envy, yearning), which may cause thawab], kibr, [which means arrogance, conceit. It is not arrogance to assume an expression of arrogance towards an arrogant person. It causes the same thawab as if you gave alms], su'i zan, [i.e. having a bad opinion of someone who is good]. As it is seen, it is fard-i-'ayn to learn iman, i.e. the tenets of Sunni belief in summary and to learn the good and bad habits. And it is fard-i-kifaya to learn how to perform the namaz of janaza, the services to be done to a dead person, the technicalities and methods of arts and trade, (and science well enough to make and use modern weapons). In other words, these learning are fard only for those who are involved in these activities; they are not fard for other people. However, if an adequate number of people do not learn them, all the other Muslims living in the same place, as well as the government, will become sinful. By the same token, it is fard for a person who intends to be a doctor to receive high school and medical education, but it is not fard for a would-be engineer to study medicine. Ibni Abidin "rahmatullahi 'alaih' makes the following remarks in his preface to the explanation of the book Durr-ul-mukhtar: "It is fard-i-'ayn to learn as much as you need of the 'Ulum-i-naqliyya, i.e. religious knowledge. It is fard-i-kifaya to learn more and also necessary amount of 'Ulum-i-'aqliyya (scientific knowledge)." He states as follows within his discourse on the performance of qira'at during namaz: "It is fard-i-'ayn for every Muslim to memorize one ayat. It is wajib to learn the (sura called) Fatiha plus three ayats, or a short sura (instead of three ayats). It is fard-i-kifaya to memorize the entire Qur'an al-karim. Learning fiqh more than you need is preferable to becoming a hafiz (committing the entire Qur'an to your memory)." He makes the following observation in the fifth volume: "Learning fiqh with the intention of teaching it to others produces more thawab than doing it for the purpose of practicing what you have learned."]

My son! Haqq ta'ala, who is so generous, so magnanimous, blessed you with the exceptionally great honor of making tawba and affiliating yourself to the sohbat of a devoted follower of the Islamic scholars. I wonder if you, under the incessant and combined temptations of your nafs and the devil, and beset among religiously ignorant and malicious friends, have managed to retain that pure state of yours? With all the various methods of subversive activities carried on by the enemies of Islam for the purpose of misguiding the younger generation, it is not an easy task to survive the trials and quandaries without any impairments. It is the period of youth. In the present monetary affluence, it is easy to satisfy every desire of the nafs, and most of the friends are disingenuous!

Translation of a Persian distich:
My dear son! Here is my sole piece of advice:
You are so young, and the alley is beset with vice.

My precious son! You must avoid excess in the free area of mubah. You must use your recreation of mubah only as much as you need. And this little amount you must utilize with the intention of doing your duties as a born slave of Allahu ta'ala. For instance, as you eat something you must intend to provide energy for the observance of Allahu ta'ala's commandments, while dressing yourself, you must have in mind covering your parts of awrat and protecting yourself against cold or hot weather, and you must bear these altruistic motives whenever you are to begin an activity of mubah, [e.g. when you study]. Our superiors preferred (the choice called) azimat, and they kept as far away as they could from the rukhsats. (In other words, they preferred the more meritorious and difficult way and avoided having recourse to the facilitated way.) Another aspect of azimat is moderation in using the mubahs. If this fortune, this blessing proves to be beyond you, then at least you should not overflow the area of mubah and trespass on the district of harams and dubious acts. Allahu ta'ala, who is very compassionate and generous towards His born slaves, allowed them to entertain themselves within the promenade of mubah. He made so many things mubah. What a gravely insolent behavior it would be towards Allahu ta'ala to leave aside all this multitude of varieties of pleasure that are halal and to indulge into a few forbidden pleasures. Furthermore, He created the same flavor in the halals as well as in the harams; in fact, there is even more satisfaction in the halals. Aside from the pleasure intrinsic in the various blessings that are halal, what could be more enjoyable than doing something which one knows Allahu ta'ala approves? And what could be more excruciating for a person than the consciousness that his master does not like his conduct? The moments when Allahu ta'ala will express His approval in Paradise will be sweeter than all the other blessings of Paradise. On the other hand, the same moments, as Allahu ta'ala will also manifest His reprimands in Hell, will be more poignant than all the other sorts of torment in Hell.

We are born slaves. We are under the command of our Owner. We are not irresponsible vagrants. Nor are we free to do whatever we like. Let us think well! Let us be wise and far-sighted! Otherwise, on the Judgement Day we will obtain nothing but shame and regrets. The period of youth is the time of making profits. A virtuous person will realize the value of this period and will not waste it. Old age is not a period attained by everybody. Even if one attains, the conditions are not always convenient and favorable. And even if one finds the favorable conditions, then old age is the age of feebleness and senility and what is done then is mostly ineffective. Today, when all the conditions are favorable, when you have the great blessing that both your parents are alive, when you are not burdened with a family to take care of, when you have all the necessary vigor and energy, I wonder what could be the excuse or the reason for this procrastination? Our Prophet "sall-Allahu 'alaihi wa sallam' stated: "He who says, "I will do it tomorrow,' loses, perishes." It is good to postpone your worldly businesses until tomorrow and always do your businesses pertaining to the Hereafter today. Yet it is a very execrable option to do it the other way round.

During the young age, three enemies of Islam, your nafs, the devil, and harmful company, will try to misguide you. A few acts of worship despite these dissuasive factors will therefore be very valuable. Acts of worship performed during one's old age, even if they are far superior in quantity to the former, will not be so valuable. When the enemy attacks, a minor act of valor on the part of the soldiers will be highly appreciated. During the peace time, however, drills of much wider capacity will not draw so much applause.

My son! Man, who is the essence, the epitome of all other beings, was not created in order that he could entertain himself, play and dance, eat and drink, go about, lead a comfortable life, or to live in luxury. He was created so that he should do his duties as a born slave, obey his Rabb, acknowledge his inferiority, weakness and neediness before Him, trust himself to Him, and supplicate to Him. All the modes of worship taught by Muhammad "alaihis-salam" are useful for people. They have been commanded because they are useful to people, not because they will do any good to Allahu ta'ala. Acts of worship should be done in a sincere and deep feeling of gratitude and reverence. The commandments should be done and the prohibitions should be avoided in perfect submission and with utmost exertion. Allahu ta'ala does not need anything, yet He blessed His born slaves with the honor of His commandments and prohibitions. We, poor born slaves who are always in need, should express very profound gratitude for this tremendous blessing; and this expression of gratitude, in its turn, means our doing the commandments with the most ardent enthusiasm.

O my son! You know very well that in this world when a person occupying a high position or rank assigns an important task to one of his juniors, the latter will attach paramount importance and value to this task, though he knows that accomplishment of this task will be useful to his senior as well. He will take pride in the task because it has been assigned to him by someone he esteems highly, and will try to accomplish it willingly and with pleasure. Is it not right? How shameful a paradox! Is the greatness of Allahu ta'ala inferior to the greatness of this senior that the commandments of Islam are not observed with such devotion? [Some people do not consider the commandments of Allahu ta'ala as a duty. They say, "Duty is sacred. Duty first, and namaz next." But, in fact, Allahu ta'ala's commandments should be considered as the first duty.]

We must be ashamed. We must rise from this slumber. There are two reasons for a person's not doing Allahu ta'ala's commandments:

1- He does not believe in Allahu ta'ala's commandments and prohibitions. [He says, for instance, that these acts of worship are "intended for the Arabs. They are for the health of the desert people. Today, Swedish drills, therapeutic muscular exercises and massages fulfill the functions of namaz, and showers, baths and beaches do the cleaning in a more modern way than the ablution."]

2- He slights Allahu ta'ala's commandments. He holds the greatness of these commandments inferior to the orders of people occupying ranks and positions. For whichever of these two reasons, we must think of the abjectness and meanness of not doing the acts of worship.

O my son! Supposing a notorious liar said, "Tonight the enemy is going to make a raid from that direction," would not the people in command reflexively tend towards the wiser preference and begin thinking of their defense forces? Would not they say that one should be prudent, be cautious and on the alert at times of danger though they know that that man is a liar?

The mukhbir-i-sadiq, that is, the ever-truthful, who is well-known for always telling the truth "alaihissalatu wassalam," announced time and again the eternal torments of the next world. They do not believe him. Or, although they believe him, they do not think they should take the necessary precautions to save themselves. As a matter of fact, the mukhbir- i-sadiq has shown the way of saving oneself, too. Then, what sort of iman is it that they do not think as much of the words of the mukhbir-i-sadiq as they would of the fibs of a liar? It will not save a person to be a Muslim, a Believer in words only. The heart itself should believe and develop yaqin. But the present instance would be the last thing to be called "yaqin'. It is not even surmise. Nor, perhaps, is it even a fancy. For it sometimes takes sagacity to take safety measures against an imagined danger.

Despite the eighteenth ayat of Hujurat sura, which purports, "Allahu ta'ala continuously observes your behaviors," they keep committing haram. However, they would immediately stop doing these atrocities lest an ordinary person should see them in the act, even if it were a mere probability. This state has two possible reasons: Either they do not believe in the declaration of Allahu ta'ala, or they just ignore the fact that Allahu ta'ala sees them. One or the other, does either one of these cases signify iman, or disbelief?

My son! You should renew your iman! Our Prophet "alaihis-salatu wassalam" stated: "Renew your iman by saying, "La ilaha illallah.' " Next, you should make tawba and cease from your habits that Allahu ta'ala disapproves. You should avoid doing what Allahu ta'ala has forbidden, i.e. the harams. You should perform the five daily prayers of namaz in jamaat. And, if you can, it will be a great fortune to perform the post-midnight prayer, i.e. the namaz termed tahajjud.

Acts of worship performed on special nights, such as the nights called Juma, 'Arafa, 'Iyd, Qadr, Barat, Miraj, 'Ashura, Mawlid and Raghaib, produce many blessings. Mawlana Muhammad Rabhami "rahmatullahi 'alaih' states on the hundred and seventy-second page of the Indian edition of the book Riyad-un-nasihin that the great Islamic scholar Imam-i- Nawawi "rahmatullahi 'alaih' writes in his book Azkar that enriching one-twelfth of the night, (which makes about one hour), that is, reading Qur'an al-karim, performing namaz, or praying during that time, stands for enriching the entire night. It makes no difference whether it is a summer night or a winter night. The passage on the four hundred and sixty- first (461) page of the book Ibni Abidin confirms this. It is stated in the book Haqaiq-i- manzuma: "The word "hour' mentioned in the books of fiqh means "a length of time'. Nawawi is a mujtahid in the Shafi'i Madhhab. Enriching the night in this wise is advisable also to people who are in the Hanafi Madhhab." The book Haqaiq-i-manzuma, by Mahmud-i-Bukhari, consists of ten volumes and is an explanation of the book Manzuma-i- Nasafi. It is a valuable book of fiqh. Mahmud-i-Bukhari passed away in Bukhara in 671 [A.D. 1271].

One of the five tenets of Islam is to pay zakat. It is definitely necessary to pay zakat. [It is a fact stated in many books, e.g. on the fourteenth page of the book Surratul-fatawa, which exists at number 1113 in the library of Murad Molla, that "If a person who is liable to pay zakat postpones it without any good reason to do so, (if he does not give it that year, for instance), he will be sinful and he will be canonically discredited as a witness."] To pay zakat without any difficulty, once a year, [for instance, in the blessed month of Ramadan], you measure out and reserve the poor's due, i.e. one-fortieth of your gold and/or silver and/or commercial property with the intention of zakat. Then, choosing one (or more) of the people canonically eligible for zakat, you give it to them any time during the entire year. It is not necessary to intend for zakat each time you give it. The intention you make while putting aside the amount of zakat will suffice. Everybody knows the amount that he is to pay to the poor or to those who are eligible for zakat every year. He sets aside this amount and keeps it. If he does not make his intention while putting it aside, the amount he gives to the poor is not zakat. [It becomes supererogatory alms.] By paying zakat, you will, at the same time, have helped the people in need. If the amount you have given to the poor is less than the amount you reserved for zakat, you must keep the remaining amount separately from your property, mix it with the following year's amount of zakat, and give the entire mixture in that year. It is permissible to follow this same procedure, i.e. to preserve the amount of zakat beforehand and to pay it to the poor sporadically during the next year. My son! Man's nafs is stingy, miserly, avaricious. It is recalcitrant towards doing the commandments of Allahu ta'ala. That is why this letter of mine may sound somewhat overemphasized. In fact, our possessions, lives and property are His gifts. Who on earth could have the right to lay hands on something given by Him? Then, zakat and 'ushr must be paid willingly.

We must perform every act of worship enthusiastically. We must be strict in avoiding having others' rights upon us, and in paying them their dues. We must be extra careful so that there should not be any rights or dues left unpaid! It is easy to pay a debt in the world. And it is possible to apologize and have ourselves forgiven by means of kind and soft words. Not so is the case in the next world. Once you get there, it will be very difficult to rid yourself of others' rights, and you will be helpless.

[One should be careful about disbelievers' rights, too. A person who lives in a country of disbelievers should not infringe on disbelievers' property, lives or chastity. And he should obey their laws, too.] One should learn Islam by asking those true scholars who know Islam well and who keep the next world in their minds. The statements and books of such blessed people are influential. Owing to their blessed breaths, it will be easy to keep their advice. [One should run away from robbers of faith and their books because these people write religious books and make speeches in order to earn money, to influence votes, or to seize a post, and they smile at Muslims in order to deceive them.] In places where true scholars cannot be found and dependable books are not available, these fake scholars can be asked questions only when it is inevitable. Yet even in such cases one should not listen to their preaches and speeches.

O my son! What business do we, faqirs, have with the above mentioned lovers of this world that we should be interested in their good or bad behaviors? Allahu ta'ala's Prophet "sall-Allahu 'alaihi wa sallam' has given all the necessary pieces of advice and left behind nothing unsaid. Yet, since this dear child came to us, faqirs, and asked for advice and help, my heart has been receiving frequently (and in a spiritual way) the information how this dear child is doing and in what states he is. It is this connection that has occasioned these lines to be written. I know that this dear child has heard words of this nature myriad of times. Yet one will not attain anything only by hearing. It is necessary to practice what one hears and learns. A patient may know what medicine he needs. Yet he will not recover unless he uses the medicine. Knowing the medicine cannot cure him. The millions of statements made by all the Prophets "alaihim-us-salam" and the thousands of books written by the multitude of savants "rahimah-um-Allah' are intended for being put into practice. Knowing will not be a beneficent intercessor in the next world, but it will be a document, a testimony serving as a ground for torment. Our master, the Prophet "sall-Allahu 'alaihi wa sallam' stated: "On the Day of Judgement, the person who will suffer from the most vehement and the worst torment is the savant who did not benefit from his knowledge and whose behaviors did not keep pace with his knowledge."

My son! You, too, know that tawba on that day will be futile! For the life you have led away from those who love and never forget Allahu ta'ala has prevented that bud of happiness from blossoming into a flower. Yet the fact that that bud has not decayed indicates that this dear child is an absolute gem who will immaculately respond to tuition. For the barakat of that tawba and attachment, it is hoped that Allahu ta'ala will sooner or later bless this dear child with the path He has chosen and loves. Whatever the cost, do not lose your love for those who follow the path guiding towards (love of) Allah! Place in your heart the earnestness to trust yourself to their care and to be in their company! Entreat Allahu ta'ala to bless you for the sake of your love for those great people and place His very love in your heart and, protecting you against attaching yourself to the rubbishy concerns of this world, to attract you entirely to Himself!

Translation of a Persian stanza:

Love is such a fire that when ablaze,
All but the darling it burns into ashes.

Draw your sword of La to kill all but Haqq;
Say La, and then look if anything remains.

All's gone, everything, except IL-L-ALLAH;
Rejoice, o love! No partner to Haqq remains!