Towards the Inner Vision of the Truth


"Fain would they put out the light of Allah with their mouths, but Allah disdaineth (aught) save that He shall perfect His light, however much the disbelievers are averse." — Holy Qur'an 9:32


2017 — The Year for Higher Spiritual Enlightenment

Diamond Jubilee Spark :: The Creation of Perfect Human Beings

Enlightenment Post No. 11 :: Knowledge & Prayers for Advancement

Bismillahir Rahmanir Rahim
In the name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful.

Ya Ali Madad! The Diamond Jubilee of Noor Mowlana Shah Karim Al-Hussaini Hazar Imam (a.s.) is only five months away. To keep up with the momentum, here is another post to increase our knowledge and enhance our yearning through Dhikr and Angelic Salwat.

Knowledge Section:

The following three verses of the Holy Qur'an address the concepts of: (1) essence (dhat) and attributes (sifat) of Allah; and (2) the beautiful names of Allah. Our path back to Allah is through the Divine names. Each Divine name has its own luminosity, power, blessing and tayid (spiritual help) for believers.

[Sound Clip: real audio stream ]

English Translation
Huwallaa-hullazi Laaa-'illaaha 'illaa Huu: -'Aalimul-gaybi wash-shahaadah; Huwar-Rahmaanur-Rahiim. (59:22) He is Allah, than Whom there is no other Allah, the Knower of the Invisible and the Visible. He is the Beneficent, Merciful. (59:22)
Huwallaa hullazii Laaa 'illaaha 'illaa Huu: Al-Malikul Qudduusus Salaamul Mu'minul Muhay-minul 'Aziizul Jabbaarul Mutakabbir: Subhaanallaahi 'ammaa yushrikuun. (59:23) He is Allah, than Whom there is no other Allah, the Sovereign Lord, the Holy One, Peace, the Keeper of Faith, the Guardian, the Majestic, the Compeller, the Superb. Glorified be Allah from all that they ascribe as partner (unto Him). (59:23)
Huwal laahul Khaaliqul Baari 'ul Musawwiru lahul 'Asmaa-'ul-Husnaa: yusabbihu lahuu maa fis-samaawaati wal-'arz: wa Huwal-'Aziizul-Hakim. (59:24) He is Allah, the Creator, the Shaper out of naught, the Fashioner. His are the most beautiful names. All that is in the heavens and the earth glorifieth Him, and He is the Mighty, the Wise. (59:24)

Through his firmans, Noor Mowlana Hazar Imam has taught two great concepts pertaining to Allah: (1) "He who is above all else", and (2) "Allah is everywhere". The first clause refers to the Essence (dhat) of Allah, and it expresses Allah's incomparability and clearly puts Allah at a very distant place from us. Some scholars use the term 'transcendence' which means to go beyond a limit or range, e.g. of thought or belief. This means that the Essence of Allah is beyond our thought or belief. Ibn al-'Arabi prefers to use the term 'incomparable' to describe the Essence (dhat) of Allah.

The second clause, "Allah is everywhere" refers Allah's attributes (sifat) and acts. Some scholars use the term 'immanence', which means to exist in all parts of the universe. Thus, Allah can be very close to us, e.g., His Light can reside in our qalb (heart). In other words, through His attributes, He can reside within us. Ibn al-'Arabi prefers to use the term 'divine similarity' for the attributes (sifat) of Allah.

Let us go back to Rumi's poem which was quoted by Noor Mowlana Hazar Imam:

—The light that lights the eye is also the light of the heart—
but the light that lights the heart is the Light of God.—

We can associate with the poem because Light (Nur) is an attribute of Allah. This attribute lights up things that it falls upon. Thus, it actualizes as something we can see with our physical eyes externally and with our inner eye internally. Clearly, we have a heart (qalb) in which the Light (Nur) can shine inside us. Rumi says that the light you see in your qalb (heart) is the Light of Allah.

From this, we can understand the concept of closeness and have the means to actualize the light within our hearts with abundance dhikr and ibadat (bandagi). This is the reason that Noor Mowlana Hazar Imam has taught us that when you see the Light within your heart and soul, you will know it. Ibn al-'Arabi has written extensively on this topic so now I will bring forward some of his knowledge so that we can understand and actualize the light of Divine attributes within our spiritual hearts (qalbs).

  1. Names, Attributes, and Relationships
    (Source: Ibn al-'Arabi's Metaphysics of Imagination: The Sufi Path of Knowledge by William C. Chittick, State University of New York Press, 1989)
  2. Chittick writes: The Divine Presence comprises the Essence, the Divine Attributes, and the Divine Acts, thus embracing all that is. The Essence is God in Himself without reference to the relationships that can be envisaged between Him and the existent or nonexistent things. The acts are the created things. The attributes or names are the barzakh or isthmus [i.e., a bridge] between the Essence and the cosmos. ...The names provide the only means to gain knowledge of God and the cosmos. (pp.33-34)
  3. Incomparability and Similarity
    (Source: Ibn al-'Arabi's Metaphysics of Imagination: The Sufi Path of Knowledge by William C. Chittick, State University of New York Press, 1989)
  4. Chittick writes: The discussion of the divine names has been moving back and forth between the Essence and the cosmos, since the names are the barzakh [i.e., bridge] between the two. In one respect no name can truly denote the Essence, since in himself God is infinitely beyond all things. "None knows God but God". In another respect every divine name —and even every name of an engendered thing— denotes God, since He is the only true Reality, the Source of all existence and attributes.

    The Shaykh al-Akbar constantly alternates between these two points of view. He maintains that true knowledge of God and creation can only come through the two perspectives. He commonly refers to them as (the declaration of God's) incomparability (tanzih) and (the declaration of His) similarity (tashbih). Tanzih derives from the root n.z.h., which means to be far away or free from something else. In other words, tanzih is to declare or to affirm that something is far way or free from something else. In other words, tanzih is to declare that God transcends any attribute or quality possessed by His creatures. Tashbih derives from root sh.b.h., which means to be similar or comparable. It signifies declaring or affirming that something is similar to something else; to compare, to liken. Hence Tashbih is to maintain that a certain similarity can be found between God and creation. (pp.68-69)

  5. The Divine Form :: Adam's Achievement
    (Source: Ibn al-'Arabi's Metaphysics of Imagination: The Sufi Path of Knowledge by William C. Chittick, State University of New York Press, 1989)
  6. Chittick writes: The divine form upon which man was created distinguishes him from all other creatures and bestows upon him specific characteristics and excellence. The "perfection" achieved by perfect men is to bring this form from potentiality into actuality. Any human being who does not manifest the form in its fullness remains imperfect. Only through the divine form does man become worthy of the "Trust" (amana) which God offered to the heavens, the earth, and the mountains, and all refused, but man accepted (Koran 33:72). The Trust is precisely to manifest the name Allah and act as His vicegerent (khalifa) in creation. (pp.275-276)

    "God created Adam upon His own form. Hence He ascribed to him all His Most Beautiful Names. Through the strength of the Form he was able to carry the offered Trust. The reality of the Form did not allow him to reject the Trust in the way that the heavens and the earth refused to carry it. (II 170.6)

    We are the locus wherein the divine names are disclosed. Their Essence is witnessed only within us, because of the divine form in which He created us. So our kingdom (mulk) is all the divine names. There is no divine name of which we do not possess a portion (nasib) (III 88.12)" (p.276)

  7. How the Form of the Name Allah Manifested into Adam?
    (Source: Ibn al-'Arabi's Metaphysics of Imagination: The Sufi Path of Knowledge by William C. Chittick, State University of New York Press, 1989)
  8. Chittick writes: The expression "Divine Form" might be better translated as the "form of the name Allah", since it is the name of the Essence, the all-comprehensive name, which turned its attentiveness towards the creation of man. In the following passage Ibn al-'Arabi is explaining the hadith of the Divine Form. (p.276)

    "Whatever is given form by a form-giver is identical with the form-giver, not other than him, since it is not outside of him. Without doubt the cosmos was given form by God in accordance with the manifestation of its entity. Man, who is Adam, consists of an individual in whom the cosmos is brought together (majmu'), for he is the small man [i.e., microcosm], the epitome of the "great man" [i.e., the macrocosm]. Man cannot perceive the whole cosmos, because of its greatness and tremendous size. In contrast, man is small in size, the perception embraces him in respect of his form and anatomy and the spiritual faculties he carries. God arranged within him everything outside of him other than God. So the reality of the divine name [Allah], which caused him to appear and from which he become manifest, is connected to every part of him. Hence all the divine names are related to him; not a single name eludes him. So Adam emerged upon the form of Allah, since it is this name which comprises all the divine names. (II 123.35)" (p.276)

  9. What is the Status of Prophet Muhammad (s.a.s.)?
    (Source: Ibn al-'Arabi's Metaphysics of Imagination: The Sufi Path of Knowledge by William C. Chittick, State University of New York Press, 1989)
  10. Chittick writes: The "universal servant" is perfect man in respect of the fact that he is the servant of every (kull) divine name, not just this name or that. He cannot be called 'Abd al-Karim ("Servant of the Generous") or 'Abd al-Majid ("Servant of the Glorious") to the exclusion of other epithet. On the contrary, he must be called the servant of every name, or, the "Servant of Allah", the all-comprehensive name. Hence, though there are many kinds of "poles" (qutb)—those friends of God around whom various realities of the universe turn—Ibn al-'Arabi calls the absolute pole (al-qutb), around whom turns the whole of the cosmos, 'Abd Allah and 'Abd al-Jami' (Servant of the All-comprehensive). (p.371)

    "When the poles and the righteous (al-salihun) are named by known names, they are named the servant of that name which has taken charge of them. God says, "When the servant of Allah (i.e., the Prophet Muhammad) stood calling on him" (72:19). Hence God named him "'Abd Allah", even if his father had named him "Muhammad" and "Ahmad". The pole is forever specified by this all-comprehensive name, so he is 'Abd Allah in this world.

    Then the poles are ranked in excellence among themselves, even though they all come together in this name which is demanded by their station. Each of them is also specified by another divine name. He is attributed to it and called by it outside the name of Polehood (qutbiyya). Hence, Moses' name is 'Abd al-Shakur ("Servant of the Grateful"), and David's specific name is 'Abd al-Malik ("Servant of the King"), and Muhammad's name is 'Abd al-Jami'. There is no pole who does not possess a name specific to him in addition to all-inclusive name which he possess, that is, 'Abd Allah. It makes no difference if the pole is a prophet in the time of prophecy which has now come to an end, or a friend of God in the time of the Shari'a of Muhammad. (II 571.18)" (p.371)

    Chittick writes: Perfect man serves God in the guise of the name Allah, not by any other name. Just as Allah is Nondelimited Being, so perfect man is nondelimited thrall [i.e., servant] of Allah (al-ma'luh al-mutlaq). He accompanies Allah in every self-disclosure. In other words, the perfect servant, through his nothingness and effacement [i.e., humility], manifests all the divine names. He assumes the traits and fully realizes the properties of every name, without being delimited [i.e., restricted] by any one or group of names. Lesser friend of God, though they realize the name Allah to some degree by being human, manifest in practice only some of the names. Ordinary mortals assume various traits of the names im disequilibrium and imbalance, leading to deviation from the human norm and preventing them from passing beyond the level of "animal man". (pp.371-372)

  11. Different Degrees of Inward Light
    (Source: 'An Anthology of Qur'anic Commentaries. Volume 1: On the Nature of the Divine', edited by Feras Hamza and Sajjad Rizvi with Farhana Mayer. Oxford University Press in association with IIS, London. 2010. (ISBN 978-0-19-960059-5))
  12. The book authors have written the following paragraph about Maybudi, the commentator who has provided knowledge on different degrees of inward light presented below:

    Maybudi's commentary on ayat al-Nur exemplifies the diversity of 'esoteric' sections of Kashf al-asrar. He begins with a straightforward analogical explanation of why God can be called 'Light'. This is followed by the observation that there are outward and inward lights, which in turn leads to another explanatory passage about different degrees of inward light realised at different levels of spiritual attainment, culminating with the Prophet, who alone realises all these lights.

    The outward light, though it may be bright and beautiful, is subservient to the inward light. The outward light is the light of the sun and the moon; the inward light is the light of realising the divine oneness (tawhid) and mystical knowledge (ma'rifat). Although the sun and moon are beautiful and radiant, there comes the day when one or other of them is eclipsed. Tomorrow, on the Day of Resurrection they will become murky and will be rolled up according to God's words: When the sun shall be darkened [Q. 81:1]. But the sun of mystical knowledge and the light of tawhid, which rises in the hearts of believers, will never be subject to any kind of eclipse, nor will murkiness affect it. It is a rising without any setting, a [radiant] unveiling (kushuf) which has no eclipse (kusuf), an illumination (ishraq) arising from the station of yearning (istiyaq). As the poet has said:

    inna shamsa'l-nahari tughribu bi'l-layhi
    wa shsmsa'l-qulubi laysat taghibu
    Lo! The sun of the day goes down at night,
    But the sun of hearts will never set.

    Know that inner lights have different levels. The first is the light of Islam, and with Islam is the light of sincerity (ikhlas); the second is the light of faith (iman), and with iman is the light of veracity [i.e., truth] (sidq); the third is the light of spiritual excellence (ihsan), and with ihsan is the light of certainty (yaqin). [In fact] the radiance of Islam is the light of sincerity; the radiance of faith is the light of veracity [truth]; and the radiance of spiritual excellence in the light of certainty. These are the stages of religious law (shari'at), and they are the stations of the generality of believers.

    Beyond this, the people of realisation (haqiqat) and the noble ones of the way (jawanmardan-i tariqat) have another light and another state [of soul]. They have the light of visionary insight (firasat) and the light of firasat, the light of unveiling (mukashafat). Then they have the light of rectitude [righteousness] (istiqamat) and, with that, the light of witnessing (mushahadat); then they have the light of tawhid and, with that, the light of propinquity [nearness, closeness] (qurbat) in the immediacy of the divine presence. As long as the servant is in [one or other of] these states he is tied to his own journeying (rawish). From this point on divine attraction (kashish-i haqq) begins. Then all lights are united: the light of gloriousness and majesty, the light of grace and beauty, the light of awesomeness, the light of jealousy (ghayrat), the light of proximity, the light of divinity and the light of 'He-ness' (huwiyyat). This is when God says light upon light. It comes to the point when slavehood disappears altogether in lordship (rububiyyat). In the whole universe no one has these lights in perfection, or that proximity with the possessor of majesty, except for the Chosen one from among the Arabs. Anyone might have some of these lights, but only Muhammad has all of them, because he has every perfection, all beauty, and all excellence is concentrated in him [i.e., he is the qibla or focal point of all excellence]." (pp.370-372)

  13. The Ismaili Tariqah Path of Higher Spiritual Enlightenment
  14. In his message to students in Bombay (Precious Pearls. No. 43), NOOR Mowlana Shah Sultan Muhammad Shah Al-Husayni (a.s.) explained about the fundamental principle of our Holy faith:

    " ... While the material conditions of life change, the spiritual conditions which are not only limited to this life but go beyond, are based on one fundamental principle, namely search for enlightenment by the right spiritual contact with the light of your holy faith."

    In our Tariqah, we have the practice of bandagi (meditation) for spiritual elevation. With the guidance of the Noor Mowlana Hazar Imam, through the Light of Imamat, through the Light of Hazrat Ali, we seek to come close to He who is above all else. We are searching and yearning for higher spiritual enlightenment through rigorous practice of luminous prayers (bandagi) at a luminous time (noorani waqt) with a luminous word. May we all be graced to attend Baitul Khyal regularly and be blessed with different degrees of light on our path of enlightenment and perfection! Ameen.

Dhikr Section: New Luminous Dhikr Titled Noore Ali, Noore Karim

Since we are in the theme of enlightenment, a new luminous dhikr titled Noore Ali, Noore Karim has been created. The aspect of Noor (Light) makes the Ismaili Imamat unique, therefore, let us perform the luminous dhikr of Noore Ali, Noore Karim with utmost humility and tenderness of the heart (length 2 min 47 sec; 3.8 MB). Let this dhikr ring in our spiritual hearts and create an aspiration to actualize the Light of the Holy Ahlul-Bait and Noor Mowlana Hazar Imam so that our spiritual hearts get filled with this NOOR and nothing else. Ameen. The lyrics for the 40 beads are given below:

Bismillahir Rahmanir Rahim
In the name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful

Noore Ali, Noore Karim
The Light of Ali is the Light of Karim Shah (through the Chain of Imamat)

Recited by Noorallah Juma

Al-hamdu lillahi rabbil 'alamin.
Praise be to Allah, the Lord of the worlds!


Noore Ali, Noore Muhammad; (12 times)
[The Light of Ali and Light of Muhammad (are one)]

Noore Ali, Noore Karim; (12 times)
[The Light of Ali is the Light of Karim Shah (through the Chain of Imamat)]

Noore Karim, Hazar Imam (12 times)
[All the above Lights are One Light which is in Noor Mowlana Hazar Imam]

Noore Ali, Noore Muhammad; (1 time)
[The Light of Ali and Light of Muhammad (are one)]

Noore Ali, Noore Karim; (1 time)
[The Light of Ali is the Light of Karim Shah (through the Chain of Imamat)]

Noore Karim, Hazar Imam (2 times)
[All the above Lights are One Light which is in Noor Mowlana Hazar Imam]

Reaffirmation of Baiyat:
Let us also reaffirm our baiyat to our Holy Imam, NOOR Mowlana Shah Karim Al-Hussaini Hazar Imam by reciting the Shahada from the second part of our Holy Dua:

"La ilaha illallah, Muhammadur-Rasoolullah, 'Aliyyun Amirul-Mu'mineen 'Aliyullah
Mowlana Shah Karim ul Hussaini, Al-Imamul Hazarul Maujood."

"There is no deity except Allah, Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, 'Ali - the master of believers - is from Allah. Our Lord Shah Karim Al-Hussaini is our present and living Imam"

Angelic Salwat Nazrana:
Let us now start presenting a nazrana of at least 101 salwats or continuous salwat for 3 to 5 minutes to our beloved NOOR Mowlana Shah Karim Al-Hussaini Hazar Imam for the fulfillment of our noble wishes. May our beloved Mowla continually keep us on the Right Path. Ameen.

Bismillahir Rahmanir Rahim
In the name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful

Allâhumâ salli alâ Muhammadin wa âle Muhammad:
O Allah! Bestow Peace on and through Muhammad and his Descendants

Recited by Noorallah Juma

Al-hamdu lillahi rabbil 'alamin.
Praise be to Allah, the Lord of the worlds!

May NOOR Mowlana Shah Karim Al-Hussaini Hazar Imam (a.s.) grant peace, prosperity, happiness, barakat, higher spiritual enlightenment, spiritual & luminous tayid (help) and empowerment to you, your family, your Jamat and the worldwide Jamat! Ameen.

Rakh Mowla je Noor te Yaqeen (Certainly, we trust in Mowla's Light only)

Haizinda — Qayampaya
(Our Present Imam is Living and His NOOR is Eternal)

Your spiritual brother,
Noorallah Juma
Thursday, Feb. 2, 2017

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