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Islam and Spiritualism

The name of Konya in the mind of any Muslim around the world immediately conjures up the monumental figure of the Muslim mystic saint Maulana Jalal al-Din Rumi (1207-1273), whose shrine and mausoleum today grace that ancient city, and whose poetry has been a consistent source of solace and inspiration for generations of his admirers. From the Mawlawi Sufi Order to the towering text of his "Masnavi", and from his lyrical poetry to the ritual veneration with which he is held by many Muslims worldwide, all have placed Rumi at the centre of Muslim piety and poetry alike.....

 

The Christian scholars and students showed keen interest and asked brainstorming questions on Islam and Sufism in a live question-and-answer session. Striking the conversation, one of them asked the guest speaker to clarify whether Sufis preached their peaceful messages with intent to convert others to their own faith.

Attaining Allah's Pleasure: The Ultimate Purpose of the Believer's Life and Death
Prof. Henry Francis B. Espiritu, New Age Islam
Attaining Allah's Pleasure: The Ultimate Purpose of the Believer's Life and Death
Prof. Henry Francis B. Espiritu, New Age Islam

In order to live a life that is fully aware of and truly prepared for our ultimate meeting with Allah Almighty, we must strive to remember the real aim of our human existence and act in such a way that our daily living must be in conformity to the true objective of life—pleasing Allah Almighty and gaining his good pleasure. However, living a life that truly pleases Allah is difficult for as long as we think that this present world is our eternal dwelling place. It is easy to forget the divine goal of our existence in this day-and-age when many forms of forbidden pleasures and sinful activities are readily available and are continually being committed by negligent souls in this world.....

Remember that in the Qur’an Allah Subḥānahu wa Ta’āla (glorified and exalted be He) tells us that we were created weak, and He says that He wants to lighten this burden for us. This weakness can be seen when we are so easily afflicted with sickness and weakness in a matter of minutes. We do not have control over where we are born or how we will die, among many other factors. We have this fragile nature that requires plenty of care to survive. We are constantly faced with tests and tribulations.....

 
Mercy: The Understated Sign of Islam
Louay Fatoohi
Mercy: The Understated Sign of Islam
Louay Fatoohi

Fanaticism and extremism should be fought in every way possible. But combating them with the argument of mercy is easier, clearer, and stronger than any doctrinal discourse. Everyone — educated and uneducated, young and old — understands mercy and recognizes it. Allah may have given us different degrees of knowledge, but He has made us all equally capable of feeling mercy and identifying cruelty. Any Muslim, or indeed non-Muslim, only needs to recognize the role of mercy in the Qur’an to be able to see that those who practice cruelty in the name of Islam have nothing to do with this heart-nurturing religion.....

They carried bundles of hay that they spread out and sat down upon. Some nursed wailing babies, others chased after toddlers to make sure they wouldn’t be crushed in the crowd. One woman was frantically searching for a tiny gold nose-pin, the only piece of jewellery she owned, which she lost in the push and pull of the crowd. She didn’t find it. A pregnant, breathless young woman with tears in her eyes said she had waited all night in hunger, slept at the local Dargah and even then was returning home empty-handed.....

 

What we need are ideas rooted in religion and society that recognize the concept of social orphans. Only then can we seek a solution through the injunction to fast and provide for those in need. Without this, Islam will merely be a set of rituals that has lost its essence as a religion of justice that defends the poor and the weak......

 
Learning Nothing from Ramadan
Abdulateef Al-Mulhim
Learning Nothing from Ramadan
Abdulateef Al-Mulhim

Islam is a religion, which is not confined to any geographical area or time. Its teachings encompass time and space and that is why Allah has declared Qur’an as His final words. Thanks to the institution of Ijtihad, Muslim scholars have always been able to come up with Islamic solutions to new problems or issues that emerge with the changing times.

When Fasting Becomes a Sin
Kashif Chaudhry
When Fasting Becomes a Sin
Kashif Chaudhry

Another similar incident, recorded in Sahih Bukhari and Sahih Muslim, relates to a journey during a hot summer day when some of the Muslims chose to fast. Those fasting were so weak and dehydrated that they could not even get up, while those who were not fasting took care of all the work and fed the animals. The Holy Prophet (PBUH) was pleased with those who skipped the fast during the extreme heat, saying it was they who received the reward that day.....

Accepting Allah's Concessions in Ramadan
Nawar Fakhry Ezzi
Accepting Allah's Concessions in Ramadan
Nawar Fakhry Ezzi

Fasting is one of the pillars of Islam and is essential in building a Muslim’s character when it is done properly, especially regarding controlling one’s temper and negative emotions in addition to abstaining from eating, drinking, smoking and sexual relationships from sunrise until sunset. Because fasting can be arduous, Allah has only required healthy capable adults to perform it exempting several groups who do not fit this criterion including the sick, elderly, children who have not reached puberty, pregnant or nursing mothers, and travellers....

 
Relationship between Genuine Worship and Inner Transformation from the Perspective of Islamic Spirituality
Prof. Henry Francis B. Espiritu, New Age Islam
Relationship between Genuine Worship and Inner Transformation from the Perspective of Islamic Spirituality
Prof. Henry Francis B. Espiritu, New Age Islam

For Hazrat Ibn Arabi, more than outward manifestations of piety, the crucial intention of the Quran is for the Islamic Ummah (community) to produce proper human beings who are humanely sensitive to the needs of others (See Shahabuddin Maliki, Ibid; pp.69-70). The Quran therefore articulates very explicitly that in the all-encompassing Islamic perspective concerning worship as Ibadah, all our acts of devotion to Allah Almighty is meant to acknowledge the Divine Sovereignty of Allah in our lives as His lowly and humble servants and at the same time it is meant to divinely transform our materialistic existence and worldly attitudes by endeavouring to inwardly transform us into compassionate and “humane” persons.....

 
In Ramadan: Prayers for Peace
Samar Fatany
In Ramadan: Prayers for Peace
Samar Fatany

In the Holy Qur’an, Allah says: “Be sure We shall test you with something of fear and hunger, some loss in goods, lives, and the fruits of your toil.  But give glad tidings to those who patiently persevere. Those who say, when afflicted with calamity, ‘To Allah we belong, and to Him is our return....

 
Fasting is a Personal Matter
Azis Anwar Fachrudin
Fasting is a Personal Matter
Azis Anwar Fachrudin

The purpose of fasting, as described in the Quran (2:183), is for Muslims to develop the quality of their religiosity and to attain Taqwa or consciousness of God — which has a close meaning to the word Puasa (Indonesian for fasting), coming from the Sanskrit Upavasa, meaning “to be seated near [God]”. Embedded in observances of fasting across religions is the idea that materialism (preoccupation with physical needs and pleasures) can divert humans from God....

Ramadan is the (month) in which was sent down the Qur’an, as a guide to mankind, also clear (signs) for guidance and judgment (between right and wrong). So every one of you who is present (at his home) during that month should spend it in fasting... Allah intends every facility for you; He does not want to put to difficulties. (He wants you) to complete the prescribed period, and to glorify Him in that He has guided you; and perchance ye shall be grateful....

 
The Child Preachers of Brazil
Samantha M. Shapiro

“If you believe the name of Jesus, say: ‘I believe!’ ” he called out in Portuguese. “I believe it is in the hands of the little missionary Alani, her hands will touch us, I believe in miracles, father!” A few minutes into his sermon, two deacons turned the hall lights off and started to yell: “God is with you — he’s here! He’s here!” The boy at the turntable raised the volume of the music. The task at hand was to coax the Holy Spirit earthside, into this room with bare walls and harsh lighting....

 
Spiritual and Sociological Significance of the Islamic Concept and Practice of Charity
Prof. Henry Francis B. Espiritu, New Age Islam
Spiritual and Sociological Significance of the Islamic Concept and Practice of Charity
Prof. Henry Francis B. Espiritu, New Age Islam

One of the Blessed Names of Allah Almighty is Al-Wadud, which means, “the Loving Well-wisher of one-and-all”. Almighty Allah’s Name, Al-Wadud (The All-Loving) demonstrates that it is Allah’s nature to perpetually manifest compassion and love to the whole ongoing universe; and this divine love flows towards His creation as the means for the preservation of the cosmos. This divine well-wishing is Almighty Allah’s perpetual act of charity and mercy to all his creatures.....

The responsibility toward these masses that Allah places on believers means they can teach them about Islamic moral values and then make their own choices because since believers are aware of the verses of the Qur’an, they know how the problems that these people cannot resolve can be settled....

 
The Spiritual Significance of Suffering from the Perspective of Islamic Sufism
Prof. Henry Francis B. Espiritu, New Age Islam
The Spiritual Significance of Suffering from the Perspective of Islamic Sufism
Prof. Henry Francis B. Espiritu, New Age Islam

Maulana Jalaluddin Rumi analogized on the educative aspect of human suffering when he said; “They throw barley on the earth; then came out branches. Next, they crushed it in the mill; then it became delicious bread after being baked and placed in the burning furnace. Next, the bread is chewed and digested and it became mind, spirit, body, and emotion. And when the mind is bewildered with love for the Beloved, what a wonderful transformation this simple barley has gone through! (sic) This barley-grain has indeed taken a marvellous journey!” .....

As for those who believe and do right actions, He will pay them their wages in full and will give them increase from His favor. As for those who show disdain and grow arrogant, He will punish them with a painful punishment. They will not find any protector or helper for themselves besides Allah....

 

A Hadith says that everyone in nature is good, including man. It is the environment that conditions a child differently. The blame goes to parents who pamper children....

 

Following the fatwa, Hussain was arrested and sent behind bars for one year. Next year, he escaped from the jail and went to Khuzastan but was arrested again thanks to betrayal of his own slave. This time he was jailed for eight years. But after one year, he was arrested again at the insistence of the minister Hamid bin Abbas. This shows Hamid’s personal grudge against him. According to Massignon, 84 Ulema testified against him and the case against him continued for one year. He was sentenced to death by hanging. After hanging to death, his organs were amputated and finally his dead body was burnt. In another account, his head was burnt. Before dying, Hussain is said to have said: “O my God! If you had shown them what I am seeing, they would have never punished me; and if you had concealed also from me what you have concealed from them, I would never have raised the slogan of An al Haque. O God, forgive my killers.”...

 
Ablution and Prayer (Part IV)
Dr A Q Khan
Ablution and Prayer (Part IV)
Dr A Q Khan

One can see how Allah Almighty was opening Asad’s heart to Islam through small events, stories and explanation by simple, almost illiterate Arab nomads. And didn’t Allah say: “He whom Allah guides is rightly guided but he whom Allah leaves to stray, for him will you find no protector to lead him to the right destination” (18:17)....

 
Ablution and Prayer (Part III)
Dr A Q Khan
Ablution and Prayer (Part III)
Dr A Q Khan

“Those who believe and do deeds of righteousness and establish regular prayers and regular charity, will have their rewards with Allah. They shall have no fear, nor shall they grieve” (2:277). “(Those are the Momnis) who establish regular prayer and give regular charity” (4:162). “They are the Momnis who establish regular prayers and charity and bow down (before Allah) humbly” (5:55)….

 
Ablution and Prayer (Part II)
Dr A Q Khan
Ablution and Prayer (Part II)
Dr A Q Khan

Our teachers and religious scholars have totally ignored stressing this most important aspect of our life as a Muslim. They don’t teach ethics, manners or moral values but only harp back on the past – in short Huququl Ebad and Huququllah have been totally sidelined and ignored....

 
Simple Living, High Thinking
Maulana Wahiduddin Khan for New Age Islam
Simple Living, High Thinking
Maulana Wahiduddin Khan for New Age Islam

Islam is a religion of simplicity. If you believe in Islam, you should lead a simple life. The Prophet of Islam laid great stress on simplicity. There is a Hadith, according to which the Prophet said that simplicity is part of faith....

 
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