Travelers on the Path of Knowledge

Knowledge is an ocean and a few drops just aren’t enough. -Unknown

Anger November 23, 2006

Filed under: Islam — musaafir @ 7:21 am

Once a man asked our prophet sallallahu alaihe wassallam for some advice, so he told him to control his anger. He repeated his question thrice, and on all times he got the same answer “la ta ghadab” ie do not be angry.

There are many hadith that stress on this subject. Below are some wise words taken from the Suhba of Mawlana Shaykh Nazim Adil Al-Haqqani, insha allah in these there are benefits for all of us.

 


Swallow Your Anger: Then Digest It

For those of us whose physical bodies are “over the hill”, by this I mean over the age of fifty or so, we must face the fact that, no matter how well we look after ourselves, our physical powers are gradually deteriorating: step by step we are approaching death.

But as for our spiritual condition, there is no such limit, no age when powers are at their maximum, then recede. Spiritual power may continue to grow strongly throughout our lives, but we must seek out conditions conducive to that continuing growth, and weed out those qualities which threaten to choke the precious plant.

One of the most harmful weeds, the most inimical to our spiritual growth is the anger generated by the vanity of our egos. When anger rages it engulfs the light of faith, transforming in into fire. The light of Faith is the pure light of God, but when it is transformed into fire it no longer illumines, it burns.

When you find yourself overcome with anger you must quickly run to a mirror and behold your own face. That ugly spectacle will be enough to calm your anger: for who wants to look like the devil himself? When a person is angry his actions are satanic – destructive and self-destructive. Our Grandsheikh stressed the necessity of abandoning anger, for when the ego’s anger dominates a person he may readily deny even the sovereignty of God, and put himself in rebellion against the Overwhelming One – and that is very dangerous. Anger also wreaks havoc on our physical bodies, causing illness and premature aging, especially when a high level of anger is maintained over a long period of time.

Very few people can turn back anger when it assaults them. This is why so few people advance spiritually. The reason that anger is so difficult to defeat is simply because it is an intrinsic part of our physical and spiritual constitution. Anger corresponds to the element of fire in our make-up, which is a balance of fire, water, earth and air. Only those who are trained from a very early age by enlightened parents or teachers will have learned to keep these elements in balance. As for most people, each of these elements may predominate on different occasions according to exterior circumstances and intrinsic propensities, setting the equilibrium off center. Fire flares up in the face of provocation and teasing, aggression or attempts to subdue the will (of the child). Since these occasions are usually frequent in our early lives, we are all adept at getting angry, and from a very early age.

Our Grandsheikh also suggested that we perform a special Dhikr (prayer-meditation) at night in order to gain the upper hand in our struggle against anger. When you arise in the last third of the night to perform superrogatory prayers, after performing your ablutions, start by turning your face to the House of God and implore Him to aid you in your attempt to subdue anger. Then repeat one-hundred times. “Ya Halim” which means “Oh (God, who is) Forbearing and Slow to Anger” This name, al-Halim, is a Divine attribute of God which He wishes to bestow generously upon us, should we seek to receive it.

The first step is to ask God, in this manner, to help us become forbearing; then we must meditate on that Divine Attribute, that it may be absorbed into our being. We are literally calling it upon ourselves. Next we must adopt a practice in our everyday lives that will further our purposes. This practice is, simply, not to show anger, even when you feel it welling up inside. Don’t spit that anger out at those around you and poison the atmosphere, like a fire-breathing dragon. Hold it in, but not like a lump of undigested food; no, you must digest it. A certain amount of anger is part and parcel of every personality. Without some of that fire in our constitution we would die; therefore, it is possible for us to digest a certain amount of anger without suffering adverse side-effects. Of course, if we were to remain unchanged over a long period of time and swallow the same amount of anger, we would overdose; but that is not the case, for in time our intake of anger decreases as we learn, and are granted the ability not to react angrily to provocation in the first place. So, just as a baby initially drinks great quantities of milk, then graduates to solid food, decreasing its milk consumption drastically, we can swallow and digest anger, in the full knowledge that other forms of nourishment are soon forthcoming.

If you can manage to refrain from showing anger for forty days, you will have passed a great milestone. When it assails you, you must evade it, and when it is going to issue from you, you must swallow it. If you can successfully avoid it for forty days, anger will begin to assault you less frequently: once every forty days. If you can manage to keep yourself in this manner the initial forty days, and thereafter, in the face of forty more assaults (forty periods of forty days, a little more than four years), Satan will announce to his helpers: “Don’t bother attacking that person; you are just wasting your time and energy. His defenses are impenetrable: one thousand attacks are just as futile as one. Leave him alone, he has escaped from our hands”. Satan’s helpers are the selfish ego, vain desires and worldliness: these are our four great enemies, and whoso learns to control his anger will be victorious against these base influences.

Whenever you feel anger arising you must be aware that you are being tested. Such tests are sent your way from the spiritual world in order to ascertain your trustworthiness. Disliked events are sent from that realm so that you may have the chance to forbear, and thereby advance toward your goal. If there were not some benefit to be found in anger it would not exist. The benefit is found in being patient in the face of it. Without passing this test there can be no improvement.

Forbearance is a key to Divine Stations, and that key is forged by facing odious events with patience and controlling our anger. So, anger is a two-edged sword: if you can grasp its handle firmly you may rent the veils that blind your heart’s eyes, but if it is in the hands of your enemies your faith will be severed.

 

Presenting the Carnival of Islam in the West November 10, 2006

Filed under: Islam,News,Random — musaafir @ 3:24 pm

Bismillahir Rahmanir Rahim..

Alhumdulillah (Praise be to God). Welcome to the 3rd issue of the Carnival of Islam in the West– a carnival showcasing a plethora of different topics and blogger entries. The carnival is aimed mostly as Muslims, but is not just for their purposes only.. so feel free to browse around!

Irving Karchmar presents The Judgment of God – A Sufi Tale « Darvish posted at Darvish, saying, “Thank you for the Carnival 🙂 Ya Haqq!”

Aaminah Hernandez presents Why I Wear the Muslim Hijab – A Discussion posted at Aaminah Hernandez.

Education and Life

Alexander Becker presents Ramadan: Evaluating One Month of Daytime Fasting posted at WOW, saying, “A unique opportunity for a spiritual as well as a nutritional experience.”

Julien presents Muslims don’t steal posted at Odd Scoop.

History and Science

Abu Sahajj presents The Unknown Islam in America posted at Wa Salaam.

Marriage and Family

ABD presents Ten Poems: Lovelace’s “To Lucasta” posted at other|matters, saying, “ABD is one of the authors of the othermatters.org team.”

Baraka presents Truth & Beauty: Bypassing Begumhood posted at Truth and Beauty.

Tariq Nelson presents The New “Passing” posted at Tariq Nelson.


News and Politics

Omar Gatto presents MPAC: Who Will be ?Appointed? to Represent Us? posted at Omar-Nameh.

Yahya Birt presents Is Britain now post-multicultural? posted at Yahya Birt – Musings on the Britannic Crescent, saying, “This post assesses if Britain has in 2006, like the Netherlands in 2004, started to shift away mulitculturalism, in confronting “the Muslim problem”.”

Umm Yasmin presents Scanty clothing never justifies rape posted at Dervish.

Kashmiri Nomad presents How To Solve The “Problem” Of Islam posted at Islam And The West Opinions Of A Kashmiri Nomad.

Religion and Philosophy

MOZAFFAR presents Ramadan Reflection – Serenity through Sajdah posted at other|matters, saying, “MOZAFFAR is one of the authors of the othermatters.org team.”

ABD presents Ethics as Politics posted at other|matters, saying, “ABD is a member of the othermatters.org team.”

Abu Sahajj presents Reflection in Nature posted at Wa Salaam.

Abu Muhammad presents Pope should not waste time reading all the people … posted at Non Skeptical Essays.

Ayesha presents Here’s what I’ve been keeping in my closet posted at Ayesha, saying, “MY SHAHADA”

The State of The Ummah

Safiyyah presents Gender Relations, Sex and Perversion: The Dark Underside of Saudi Arabia posted at SAFspace.

Jennifer Suleiman presents Southern Muslimah posted at Southern Muslimah, saying, “Jazakum Allahu Khayran”

dezhen presents My Dream – an Australian Institute of Islamic Studies posted at Dezhen || Creative Morality, saying, “After the recent barrage of media towards Muslims in Australia, this is a little mind-walk regarding what one of my dreams would be regarding the Muslim community here.”

Zack presents Islamic Calendar posted at Procrastination, saying, “This is more of a compilation post than an analysis one about the issue of moonsighting and the Islamic calendar.”

Please remember to submit your articles for next edition! 🙂