Towards the Inner Vision of the Truth


"We verily sent Moses with Our revelations, saying: Bring thy people forth from darkness unto light." — Holy Qur'an 14:5


Candle Posts :: Motivational Gems for Higher Spiritual Enlightenment

:: Candle Post #74 :: Dhikrs for the Ascent of the Soul ::

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

Ya Ali Madad! In this posting, I would like to present the mechanism of the ascent of the soul and relate it to different forms of Divine Remembrance or dhikr-i Ilahi. Let us first study the conceptual model of the ascent of the soul:

The Conceptual Model of the Ascent of the Soul:

The conscience of terrestrial man is the workshop of soul and intellect. It is called the centre of intellectual and spiritual change (inqilab) and is called 'heart' (qalb) by Wise Qur'an. Qalb (heart) means 'to turn around, turn upwards, turn upside down' in Qur'anic terminology. Physically, heart is a hollow muscular organ found in the left side of the chest which, by rhythmical contraction and expansion forces the blood through the circulatory system of vertebrates. In psychology and literary usage, heart is the fount of man's emotion and deepest feelings. When it is used in the sense of 'intellect' as well as in the sense of 'spiritual intuition', it is the conscience of man. The word qalb (heart) in the Holy Qur'an is used in the latter sense and I will use it from here onwards. All the powers of good and evil are linked to the workshop of qalb, in which the intellect, rational soul and sensory soul work together.


Fig. 1. The ascent of the soul and its spiritual and intellectual resurrection.

Part 2: What is the purpose of open dhikr?

The dhikr that we perform loudly is called open remembrance (Dhikr-i jâli). Open dhikr tasbis are incorporated in our tariqah practices and in our personal search. The open dhikr can be performed individually or collectively. This practice is the first step in the path of spiritual journey — the journey which starts from the outside and aims to penetrate the spiritual world which is hidden inside each one of us. Open remembrance also helps the soul to progress and prepares it for hidden remembrance.

Part 3: What is the purpose of hidden dhikr?

The dhikr that we perform silently is called hidden remembrance (Dhikr-i khafi). Hidden dhikr tasbis are also incorporated in our tariqah practices and in our personal search. The hidden dhikr is performed collectively during congregation, e.g., in the Mushkil Asaan tasbis or individually at any time during the day and the night. The practice is the second step in the path of spiritual progress. Hidden remembrance helps the soul to progress and prepare it for bandagi (meditation).

Part 4: What is the purpose of bandagi?

Bandagi is a special luminous dhikr performed at a luminous time with a luminous word (Supreme Name of God — Ism-i Azam). In the personal spiritual search, the light of God, the Prophets and the Imam of the age is potentially encompassed in the sacred Ism-i Azam. This sacred word is the spirit and light of the Qur'an, the light of guidance and the light of faith. It enlightens the path of murids of the Holy Imam.

Part 5: What does bandagi do?

When a believer succeeds in achieving a high status through hidden remembrance with Ism-i Azam at a luminous time, the doors of Divine blessings open and the spirit and spiritual entities converse with him. This unprecedented and unique world, which is filled with spirituality and luminosity, remains in front of the believer day and night. This subtle universe which remains in the forehead of a believer is the opposite of the exoteric and material world because everything in it is alive. The spiritual elevation and the intellectual perfection of the personal world can be achieved if a believer practices Ism-i Azam and follows in the foot-steps of the Noor Mawlana Hazar Imam.

Part 6: How is bandagi performed?

In order to awaken the inner senses, it is necessary to impose silence on the external senses. Therefore, hidden remembrance with the supreme name is performed in quiet places where the lights are dimmed, external movement is restricted and all the attention is focused on internal senses. The Supreme Name is silently recited with the inner tongue at a high speed initially to keep out the waswasah, i.e., disturbing thoughts. In addition, the inner ear has to be tuned to the inner tongue so that one can concentrate on the Supreme Name. The inner eye has to focused on the forehead because this is the place of manifestation of spiritual miracles.

Part 7: How does the soul get satisfied?

The answer to this question is captured in the following ta'wil:

Tawil of the word "Tatma'innu": It/he finds peace, satisfaction:
"Real satisfaction is that the friends of God receive in the form of inner observation, Divine vision, recognition, knowledge and wisdom, as a result of the dhikr of Ism-i Azam."
—A Thousand Wisdoms, Tawil number 214, p.116.

This is represented by tier 3 in Fig. 1. In this stage, the soul is purified and reconciled.

Part 8: How is the Ism-i Azam actualized and perfected for Ismailis?

The answer to this question is captured in the following ta'wil:

Tawil of the word "Qalb-i Salim": Sound heart:
"In verse (26:89) is mentioned qalb-i salim, the sound heart which is meant a heart which has been illumined with the light of Imamat. In the case of such a mu'min, the Imam himself becomes his heart."
—A Thousand Wisdoms, Tawil number 697, p.370.

This is represented by tier 4 in Fig. 1. In this stage, the purified and reconciled soul is illumined by the highest form of intellect, i.e., the NOOR (Light) of Imamat.

Expansion of the Heart
The Holy Prophet's Experience of Monoreality
The Power of Ism-i Azam (Supreme Name)
The Throne of God in the Personal World
The Spirituality of the Holy Qur'an and the Holy Prophet (s.a.s.)

Ardent Supplications:

Ya Ali, Ya NOOR Mowlana Shah Karim Al-Hussaini Hazar Imam, create Sunshine in our hearts, light in our foreheads, and bless us all with the inner vision of the Truth!

Ya Ali, Ya NOOR Mowlana Shah Karim Al-Hussaini Hazar Imam, grant the global Jamat luminous (noorani) and spiritual (ruhani) tayid (help) to advance materially, spiritually and intellectually. Ameen.

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

Rakh Mowla je Noor te Yaqeen (Certainly, we trust in Mowla's Light only),
Noorallah Juma
Monday, January 18, 2010

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