Thursday, February 21

Islam is for peace and acceptance

Throughout their 1,400-year history, Muslims have argued and quarrelled over various interpretations of the Quran and religious traditions.

But it is a sign of the times that the most extreme interpretation of the Quran appeals to Muslim masses these days, and that far too many clerics are attacking Christians and Jews and delivering fire-and-brimstone sermons full of the imagery of war martyrdom. This is contrary to the message of the Quran -"Do not argue with the followers of earlier revelation other than in the most kindly manner (29:46)" - and the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad: "Do not consider me better than Moses," and, "I am closest of all people to Jesus, son of Mary."

For all the emphasis that today's clerics put on the Prophet's war record, he spent a total of less than a week in actual battle in the twenty-three years of his Prophethood. He advised his followers to "be moderate in religious matters, for excess caused the destruction of earlier communities." A moderate himself, he smiled often, spoke softly and delivered brief sermons.

"The Prophet disliked ranting and raving," wrote Imam Bukhari, the ninth-century Islamic scholar of the Prophet's sayings. Ayesha, the Prophet's wife, reported that "he spoke so few words that you could count them." His most famous speech during the Hajj pilgrimage in AD 632, which laid down an entire covenant, was less than 2,800 words.

Muhammd was respectful of Christians and Jews. Hearing the news that the king of Ethiopia had died, he told his followers, "A righteous man has died today; so stand up and pray for your brother." When a Christian delegation came to Medina, he invited them to conduct their service in the mosque, saying, "This is a place consecrated to God." When Safiyyah, one of his wives, complained that she was taunted for her Jewish origins, he told her, "Say unto them, 'my father is Aaron, and my uncle is Moses.'"
"Being Muslim" - Haroon Siddiqui, pp. 33-34

Tuesday, February 19

The Ability of the Murshid to Teach Telepathically

Regarding the different methods the Spiritual Guide (Murshid) may use to teach the Initiate (Murid), the venerable Khwaja Muhammad Nazim says,

Knowledge comes in two ways. One is by listening from outside and using that in directing oneself on a way. But some knowledge comes from the heart, and this is more powerful in pushing one towards his target. In other words, if a command comes from outside, the ego doesn’t take care to keep it, but when it comes from yourself, it has more effect. The ego never likes to be commanded, but if it is coming from the heart, you see it as honorable.

You may listen to so many lessons, but really you are waiting for that command to come from yourself. Correct and Divine Guidance come with the second way. The Awliya may speak, but they also send inspiration to hearts. The Murshid may teach by inspiration. Then, one thinks about the knowledge coming, “I am thinking this.” The more we are purified, the more Divine Wisdom waves can be caught by our hearts’ ears.

The Prophet taught that if Man can keep his heart pure, and worship sincerely for forty days, then he may catch Divine Wisdom in his heart and may speak wisdom, which is the essence of knowledge."

Thursday, February 14

Beauty of Simplicity and
The Art of Being Yourself

In order to love someone purely, is to actually see someone’s world through his or her eyes, and vice-versa. Once this happens... the universe merges the two different souls through the same path of life where these learn to coexist as one. To see through his or her eyes requires openness, love, faith, honesty, giving without expectations and trust. Once this occurs, two individuals learn how to speak the unspoken language of love, or better said, they learn how to speak the language with which the universe communicates to us.

This communication is spontaneous, powerful and clear to see if you are open, and if you love, believe and are honest, giving and trustworthy. It occurs when the two energetic bodies attune to their vibrations and create an energetic harmony. These find in each other a resonant vibration that attracts all resonant vibrations nearby, and sometimes, will 'unintentionally' communicate telepathically to others or others will be able to attune to the harmony of the Universe and find them.

The majesty of the sky and celestial objects merely represent a little piece of God's creation, and yet they are so attractive, so impressive that one might think there must be nothing bigger and more beautiful than those. When looked at, they have a profound effect on our souls when they irradiate us with their rays of sun or moon light. They caress our energetic bodies during day and night and recharge us. They remind us that we are the source of life and change in this planet

Drunk Without Wine!

Drunk without wine; sated without food; distraught; foodless and sleepless; a king beneath a humble cloak; a treasure within a ruin; not of air and eath; not of fire and water; a sea without bounds. He has a hundred moons and skies and suns. He is wise through universal truth - not a scholar from a book. Welcome to Sufism. This is certainly not me but I strive to learn more about it.

Monday, February 11

Let go of your worries

Let go of your worries
and be completely clear-hearted,
like the face of a mirror
that contains no images.
If you want a clear mirror,
behold yourself
and see the shameless truth,
which the mirror reflects.
If metal can be polished
to a mirror-like finish,
what polishing might the mirror
of the heart require?
Between the mirror and the heart
is this single difference:
the heart conceals secrets,
while the mirror does not.

-The Divani Shamsi Tabriz, XIII

Let go of your worries

Let go of your worries
and be completely clear-hearted,
like the face of a mirror
that contains no images.
If you want a clear mirror,
behold yourself
and see the shameless truth,
which the mirror reflects.
If metal can be polished
to a mirror-like finish,
what polishing might the mirror
of the heart require?
Between the mirror and the heart
is this single difference:
the heart conceals secrets,
while the mirror does not.

-The Divani Shamsi Tabriz, XIII

Sunday, February 10

What is Love?

What is love? Love means to give up everything for the sake of human beings. Do you want more details? You know the details inside yourself. Everyone knows when he loves someone for the sake of God, for the sake of the Prophet (s), for the sake of masters: that is when he or she gives everything. If a man loves a woman and she asks him to bring her the sky, he will try to find a rocket to take him to the sky and try to bring the sky to her. If she tells him to bring her a diamond, he will try to buy her the best diamond that money can buy. Is this not true? If you love your Lord, it means you have to love every one of His creations and try to help them as much as possible.

-Mawlana Shaykh Hisham Kabbani

What Do I Know of Love? By Rumi

What Do I Know of Love

I talk of Love.

He says, “what do you know of Love.”
It’s insanity, It’s Pain.
How it cuts through your soul.
How it burns.

What do I know of Love?
in my heart,
Then, silence.

I have seen a glimpse of love,
And have witnessed it’s insanity.
Why do I cry? Oh God, Why…?

He speaks of your Love.
But the love of your creation alone,
has driven me,
to madness.
What do I know, of your Love?

There it goes,
Taxiing down the runway.
And here, I stand,
with my pieces all around me.
My drunken heart,
my numb senses.

What are these at my feet?
Shattered glass?
I must try to put them back together,
From where should I start?
Where should I start?

The lonely bench,
in the morning fog.
The weeping flowers.
My wailing heart.

Why do they all cry?
Do they also know,
of love?

Wednesday, February 6

Ayat al Kursi

      Ayat al Kursi
      - آية الكرسي -
      the Verse of the Throne

      Ayat al-Kursi is verse 255 of the second chapter (Surah) of the Holy Quran, Surat al-Baqarah (The Chapter of the Cow)

      Below is the Arabic text, the transliteration, and the English translation and then some of the benefits of reciting this verse, the Verse of the Throne:

      اللَّهُ لاَ إِلَهَ إِلاَّ هُوَ الْحَيُّ الْقَيُّومُ لاَ تَأْخُذُهُ سِنَةٌ وَلاَ نَوْمٌ لَهُ مَا فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَمَا فِي الأَرْضِ مَنْ ذَا الَّذِي يَشْفَعُ عِنْدَهُ إِلاَّ بِإِذْنِهِ يَعْلَمُ مَا بَيْنَ أَيْدِيهِمْ وَمَا خَلْفَهُمْ وَلاَ يُحِيطُونَ بِشَيْءٍ مِنْ عِلْمِهِ إِلاَّ بِمَا شَاءَ وَسِعَ كُرْسِيُّهُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضَ وَلاَ يَئُودُهُ حِفْظُهُمَا وَهُوَ الْعَلِيُّ الْعَظِيمُ

      Allahu la ilaha illa huwa, Al -Haiyul-Qaiyum La ta'khudhuhu sinatun wa la nawm lahu ma fi as-samawati wa ma fil-'ard Man dhal-ladhi yashfa'u 'indahu illa bi-idhnihi Ya'lamu ma bayna aydihim wa ma khalfahum wa la yuhituna bi shai'in min 'ilmihi illa bima sha'a Wasi'a kursiyuhus-samawati wal ard wa la ya'uduhu hifdhuhuma wa Hu wal 'Aliyul-Adheem

      "Allah! There is no god but He - the Living, The Self-subsisting, Eternal. No slumber can seize Him Nor Sleep. His are all things In the heavens and on earth. Who is there can intercede In His presence except As he permitteth? He knoweth What (appeareth to His creatures As) Before or After or Behind them. Nor shall they compass Aught of his knowledge Except as He willeth. His throne doth extend Over the heavens And on earth, and He feeleth No fatigue in guarding And preserving them, For He is the Most High. The Supreme (in glory)."
      [Surah al-Baqarah 2: 255]

Vitrues of reciting Ayat al Kursi

Ubayy bin Ka'b (radiAllahu anhu) reported: The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: "Abu Mundhir! Do you know which Ayah in Allah's Book is the greatest? I said: 'Allah and His messenger know best.'

He (peace be upon him) again said: 'Do you know which Ayah in Allah's Book, according to you, is the greatest?' I (Abu Mundhir) replied: ‘It is 'Allah la ilaha illa Huwal-Hayyul-Qayyum'.[2:255].
Thereupon he (peace be upon him) patted me in the chest and said, ' Rejoice by your knowledge, O Abu Mundhir! (i.e, may this knowledge be a source of respect, honour and benefit to you)'."

Asma' bint Yazid (radiAllahu anhu) reported, 'I heard the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) say about these two following Ayahs, i.e, verses: "Allah! There is no god but He - the Living, The Self-subsisting, Eternal. [2:255], And, Alif Lam Mim, Allah! There is no god but He - the Living, The Self-subsisting, Eternal [3:1-2], That they contain Allah's Greatest Name."
[Imam Ahmed bin Hanbal in his Musnad]

It was narrated that Abu Umamah Al-Bahili (radiAllahu anhu) said: The Messenger of Allah (salAllahu alayhi wasalam) said: "Whoever recites Ayat al-Kursi immediately after each prescribed Prayer, there will be nothing standing between him and his entering Paradise except death."
[an-Nasa'i, Ibn Hibban, ibn Sunni, at-Tabarani, ibn Hibban - Sahih]

Abu Dhar (radiAllahu anhu) said; O Messenger of Allah, what is the greatest thing that has been revealed to you?’ He said, Ayat al-Kursi, 'Allah! La ilaha illa Huwa'

When you lie down in your bed, recite ayat al-Kursi, Allah! La ilaha illa Huwa (none has the right to be worshipped but He), the Ever Living, the One Who sustains and protects all that exists… [al-Baraqah 2:255] until the end of the ayah, then you will have a protector from Allah and no shaytan (devil) will come near you until morning comes
[Sahih al-Bukhari]

It was narrated from Abu Hurairah (RadiAllahu anhu) that the Messenger of Allah (salAllahu alayhi wasalam) said: "In Surat Al-Baqarah there is a verse which is the best of all the verses of the Qur’an. It is never recited in a house but Shaitan leaves: Ayat Al-Kursi."

Everything has its pinnacle and the pinnacle of the Qur’an is Surah al-Baqarah. In it there is an ayah which is the greatest in the Qur’an: Ayat al-Kursi

It is reported by way of Abu Hurairah (radiAllahu anhu) that someone used to come upon him and take from the charity – which the Prophet (salAllahu alayhi wasalam) had made him guardian over – night after night, so on the third night, he said: "I will report you to the Messenger of Allah (salAllahu alayhi wasalam), the man said: 'Let me teach you some phrases with which Allah will cause you benefit’ – they were very eager for good – so he said: 'When you go to, read Ayat al-kursi (Verse 255 of Surah Al-Baqarah) completely, for there is still upon you from Allah a guardian, and no shaitan can get close to you until you enter upon morning.' Then he (salAllahu alayhi wasalam) said: "He told you the truth and he is a liar, (that was a shaitan).
[Sahih Al-Bukhari]

Ali ibn abu Talib (RadiAllahu anhu) narrates, "I cannot understand how a person, who is a Muslim, and owner of reason (intellect) can spend the night without reading Ayat al Kursi. If you knew the benefits of it, then you will never discard it under any condition".

Abdullah bin Mas'ud (radiAllahu anhu) narrates that a person said to Prophet (salAllahu alayhi wasalam): "O Messenger of Allah (salAllahu alayhi wasalam), teach me something through which Allah I will give me benefit." He said: "Continue reciting Ayatul Kursi. This will be a means of protection for you, your children and even those houses which are near your house."

It is reported from Anas (radiAllahu anhu) that the Prophet (salAllahu alayhi wasalam) asked a certain companion if he was married. He replied. "I do not have so much money as to get married." RasulAllah (peace and blessings be upon him) said "Do you know Surat al-Ikhlas?" He replied: "Yes". RasulAllah (salAllahu alayhi wasalam) remarked: "That equals to a quarter of the Qur’an. Do you know Surat al-Kafirun?" He replied: "Yes." RasulAllah (peace and blessings be upon him) said "it equals to a quarter of the Qur'an". He further asked “do you know Surat al-Zilzal?” He replied, “yes.” RasulAllah (salAllahu alayhi wasalam) said: "That equals to a quarter of the Qur’an. Do you know Surat al-Fath?" He replied: "Yes". RasulAllah (salAllahu alayhi wasalam) said: "That equals to a quarter of the Qur’an. Do you know Ayat al-Kursi?" He replied: "Yes". RasulAllah (salAllahu alayhi wasalam) said: "That equals to a quarter of the Qur’an. Get married, get married, get married!"

Abu Umamah (radiAllahu anhu) reported that the Prophet (salAllahu alayhi wasalam) said that the ismullahi al- a'dham (The Greatest Name of Allah), through which Allah assuredly fulfils people's needs, is contained in three surahs in the Qur'an: al-Baqarah, Al Imran and Taha. Abu Umamah (radiAllahu anhu) says that when he searched for the ismullahi al- a'dham, he found it to be in Ayat al-kursi (2:255); and in Surah Al-’Imran (3:2); and in Surah Taha (20:111).
[al-Hakim, ibn Majah, at-Tabarani, at-Tahawi, and others]

It is reported by at-Tabarani that the Prophet (salAllahu alayhi wasalam) said: "The one who recites Ayat al-kursi after the conclusion of an obligatory prayer, he is under the care of Allah until the next prayer commences."
[at-Tabaraani’s At Targheeb wat-Tarheeb (2:435)]

Listen to Ayat al Kursi

Ayat al-Kursi by Saad al-Ghamdi [mp3]
Ayat al-Kursi by Hafiz Remzi Er (Turkey) [mp3]
Ayat al-Kursi by Qari Ziyad Patel (South Africa) [mp3]
Ayat al-Kursi [mp3]
Ayat al-Kursi [mp3]
Ayat al-Kursi [mp3]
Ayat al-Kursi [mp3]
Ayat al-Kursi [wma]

Ayat al-Kursi Booklet [Pdf]

Tuesday, February 5

Kids in Africa are starving - can't afford to cry
I'll pay interest for a car I can't afford to buy

Saturday, February 2

Swallow Your Anger: Then Digest It

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.

Friday, February 1

Love Is The Water Of Life

Love Is The Water Of Life

Everything pertaining to this world is impermanent, constantly in a state of transition. Therefore, it is only natural that I am here addressing you today and elsewhere tomorrow. Don't let this condition sadden you, for, in reality, transition is God's mercy to man. Don't wish even for good times to last forever, for you wouldn't be able to bear permanence -you would just get fed up. Know that the discontinuation of any desirable state or condition is the catalyst for gaining an even deeper appreciation of what is good. Longing for the attainment of the spiritual realities of which you have caught a glimpse is the means to their attainment. Is there any morsel tastier than that upon which the fast is broken?

This is the reason that Allah Almighty created the world as it is. The signs of the heavens take their turns inspiring our souls. The rising sun brightens our day, but just when we would start to get fed up with it, lo and behold, it bows out and the soft light of the moon enchants us with its many forms: appearing first as a delicate crescent, then waxing gradually to its full and waning. If it never waned no one would be able to appreciate the awe inspiring immensity of the starlit heavens.

A Visit to God's Holy House

The threadbare pilgrim may cross snowy mountain passes and sun-scorched deserts barefoot, or even on his hands and knees in order to reach Mecca. When he finally arrives he is struck dumb by the awesome majesty of the Holy Kaaba. Tears stream down his face as he clings to its door, pouring out his heart and soul to his Lord--and the Lord fulfills his heart's innermost desire in accordance with the longing that drove him to suffer freezing wind and scorching sun. Longing brought him to the house of the Lord, but the pilgrim's dedication to his Lord will not be served by his staying in Mecca on and on, but by returning to his country with the cherished memories of his pilgrimage inspiring his faith. Should he choose to remain in Mecca he runs the risks of gradually becoming callous and hardened to the sight of the Kaaba like the inhabitants, who never had a Mecca as their distant sought-after goal, who crossed no deserts to attain it, but who may, rather, cross through the holy Mosque as a shortcut to get from one part of the market to another, barely casting a glance at the magnificent Kaaba.

Once a disciple used to attend his Shaykh's discourses only occasionally, although he lived in the vicinity of the Shaykh's Dergah (Sufi School). The Shaykh asked him: "Why do you attend so infrequently?" The clever disciple answered: "Because I don't like being asked to attend less frequently".

The sun, the moon, the stars, the Holy Kaaba, the beauty of nature or architecture, or the face of a beloved person: all these sights may inspire us, may remind us of a great truth that is alive in our hearts, but of which we are yet heedless. But don't become enamoured of the signs to such an extent that they become ends in themselves, and you cease to follow the directions they seek to impart to you. The object is not a heavenly body that will set, a symbol which may become commonplace nor a face that will age or turn away from you. When Abraham was yet a seeker of truth, at a stage of bewilderment on his road to truth, he became enamoured of the sun, moon and stars, but as each set he said: "My love is not for those that disappear".

Love is eternal, and the transitory nature of all things pertaining to this world is a sign of truth, a sign that shows us by means of contrast. Real spiritual love, love of God and love of mankind for the sake of God is the only truth, the only thing in this world that is permanently and constantly sweet. Physical separation from someone you love, in accordance with the rule that pertains to the physical, may create a longing that will cause love to increase, may augment the bliss of reunion. But on the spiritual level that love is constant, is never interrupted by distance nor by time. Your beloved may be on the moon and you may be in bliss at the thought of reunion, but if love is unrequited, that is not sweet separation but a bitter pill. The extinction of love is pitch darkness. You may regard the sunset as beautiful, but how would you feel if it were setting forever?

Love is the water of life. God created Adam from clay and water. If it were not for water the clay would hold no shape. Divine Love is what binds our souls together. That is why people become so miserable when they feel unloved. It is a feeling that something essential is missing from one's life, that life itself is incomplete, and in the face of this ache people set out in search of love with the desperation of a man dying of thirst.

Lesson in a Bumper Sticker

Yesterday, as we were driving back from Sheffield I noticed a bumper sticker that read: "God is Love". That is a statement that accords with a common level of understanding; in reality such a description can never do justice to the Almighty; never can a single word or emotion, nor even all words and all emotions come close to describing His splendour, what to speak of "being" Him. However, the saying: "God is Love" can be called a common wisdom, as the intention is to accord the highest degree of veneration and devotion to love--that is correct--but to say it is God is, let us say, an oversimplification.

Love is an attribute of God Almighty which binds His servants to Him eternally. If God were to hate mankind it would be so easy for Him to bring about an abrupt and terrible end to our follies--but He loves us and therefore shows us so much tolerance.

If you are a parent, consider your love for your children. If your son grew up to be a criminal, would you not love him still? Would you not maintain that despite his bad actions he still had good in him, his essential character is known to you as good, not evil.

Noah's Forty Clay Jugs

Everyone knows the story of Noah, peace be upon him. He is one of the five greatest prophets of God. He called on his people day and night for years, asking them to leave their evildoing, to repent and return to love of God and His worship and to abstain from wrong. His people rejected him repeatedly and scoffed at him. As much as he preached they rejected his teachings.

However he was patient and continued to preach to them. They never let up in their mockery of him. So it continued for years and years, and Noah was persistent and patient. He did not tire of calling his people to truth and goodness, and they in turn did not tire of scoffing at him. This continued for decades, a century, two centuries, and Noah was patient and persistent. Three centuries, four, five...

After nine centuries of non-stop preaching accompanied by endless mockery and rejection, Noah reached his limit. Finally he asked God to punish his people and to send a flood upon them and not leave a single one of them alive. As he was a prophet of God, God was obliged to answer his prayer. We know what came to pass.

Once some time after having been saved from the flood, the Lord addressed Noah saying, "O my servant, I am asking you to go and with your utmost care make for Me forty clay jugs." As he was an obedient servant and a great prophet, Noah immediately went about complying with this order. He gathered the finest clay he could find and spent days and nights laboring with love to create 40 beautiful clay jugs.

After so much effort, the Lord then addressed Noah again saying: "O my servant, now that you have made these forty jugs, go outside and take each one and throw it down upon the rocks." Noah, an obedient servant, had no choice but to obey. He took the jugs which he had spent so much effort in making, and one-by-one smashed them against the rocks.

Then the Lord addressed Noah, saying: "Oh Noah, you made forty clay jugs, and it was odious to you to break them. Do you think that it was a pleasure for Me to kill all of My servants, even though they were unbelievers?" Then Noah began to cry and wail. So proverbial was his wailing that "Nuh" came to mean "wail" in Arabic.

Moses and Korah

Do you know the story of Moses and Korah? Among the Children of Israel at the time of the exodus from Egypt Korah was the richest man. Korah carried a large part of that wealth into the Sinai with him, and with that wealth a great deal of influence over the Children of Israel. Unfortunately for Korah he used his influence to stir up rebellion and discontent with the leadership of Moses. In order to discredit Moses once and for all Korah bribed a dishonourable woman to claim that Moses had committed adultery with her and that the child in her womb was his. As he was of course innocent, Moses was livid with rage, as he could only deny the accusation but could do nothing to prove it false. How could he lead the Children of Israel when they would hold doubts in their hearts regarding his morals and veracity?

So Moses turned to his Lord, saying: "Oh my Lord, vindicate me!" The Lord replied: "I have granted you the power to command the Earth. You may use it to vindicate yourself and prove your innocence to the Children of Israel". Then Moses announced to all the people: "All who are with me come to my side and those who adhere to Korah stay by his side". Then Moses said: "Oh Earth, catch him and swallow him up!" Responding to this command the Earth caught Korah, laying firm hold of his feet and ankles. Korah cried: "Oh my dear cousin Moses, for the sake of our kinship please forgive me!" But Moses was very angry and determined to punish Korah for all of his crimes: "Oh Earth, swallow him!"

Then the Earth grabbed a little more of his legs, and he again cried out to Moses for forgiveness--and so it went on, a full seventy times: Korah asking for pardon and Moses refusing and demanding retribution. Finally the earth had completely swallowed Korah. Then the Lord addressed Moses: "Korah begged you for forgiveness seventy times, but you had no mercy for him in your heart. I swear by My Might and Glory, had he even once addressed himself to Me, saying: 'Oh my Lord, I repent, please forgive me', I would have rescued him. You had no mercy for him because you didn't create him. I am the Creator and I have boundless mercy for My repentant servants".

The Lord created us and loves us; that is why everyone loves love. No one complains of love or wants it to be taken from him, but all want to be loved more. Where are you seeking love? Are you taking pure water from the gushing source, or muddy, slimy water from the ditch? You love people, but they will die. Perhaps your love will be unrequited, or because of a small error or indiscretion on your part that person's heart will harden to you and love will be no more. You say that you love him or her, but do you love him or her unconditionally? Is your love permanent-love for the real immaculate divine essence living in that person, or temporary, as a result of some desirable attributes: beauty, youth, wealth, station or wit? When that beautiful, young, wealthy, clever, amiable socialite becomes an ugly, old, penniless, senile, grumpy outcast will you still love her? Is your love of the spirit or of the world?

Oh people, seek real love, a love that cannot go astray. That love is the love of God and the love of his creatures for the sake of his love for them. That love emanation may bind all receptive hearts. There is a common saying: "The friend of a friend is a friend", so love people if you love God, for you must know that He loves them. It is not always easy to love people, even good people, so what about the Korahs of this world?

Love pertaining to the ego is not love, as all the ego knows is to love itself, and what is commonly called love is but a mutual understanding to support each other's egoism. Don't trust your ego, nor anyone else's, for the ego is disloyal by nature. When the spirit gains ascendancy the ego may be harnessed and put to good use, as the Holy Prophet said: "Your ego is your mount", but left to its whims it will take you many miles from your path in search of herbage.

This discourse is an Ocean, its summary is: what is of the world beware of, and pay attention to the dose. When crossing that ocean embark on a sturdy ship with well maintained lifeboats and life-preservers, and if you swim in it keep your head above water!