The Lovers of Allah Walk in One of the Three Paths
by Sheik Taner Ansari (Qadiri Rifai Sufi Order)
Bismillah er Rahman er Rahim
Path of Ahyar (virtuous people):
The wayfarers of this path want to reach Allah by praying a lot, making tasbih, fasting, and going to Hajj. For these people it takes a long time to reach Allah.
Path of Abrar (righteous people):
The ones in this catagory fight against their nafs. They try to convert their bad manners into good manners by dieting. There are more people who reach Allah this way than by Ahyar. The people who follow the path of Abrar want to tame their nafs and rule their souls.
Path of Shattariya (distinct people):
The people in this path neither concentrate on dieting, nor converse much with the awam (general people). They have no business but joy, thankfulness, and zikr. There are more people who reach Allah this way than through Ahyar and Abrar. The wayfarers (salik) of this path are busy with burning their nafs, cleaning their hearts, and polishing their souls (ruh):
Tazkiyay-i-nafs (burning the nafs):
To save nafs from bad habits, e.g., lying, lust, gossip, greed, passion, abusive behavior, etc.
Tasviyay-i-qalb (heart being pure):
Cleaning the heart so that the light of the truth enters there. The person can then see Haqq's wisdom.
Tajliyay-i-ruh (shining of the soul):
Shining of the ruh with the divine light. The people who are on this path don't pay attention to karama (miracles). They have no direction other than "die before you die."
The Qadiri path is the Shattariya path.
It is divided into ten sections.
The Ten Sections of Shattariya
To leave desires, as in the state of death, because they look to other than Allah and create duality in the heart. The people who are closer to Haqq stay away from bad deeds. When a person wants to repent, he has to remove the intention of sinning from his nafs, and then he must wipe the sin off his heart. The repentance of the innocent is superior to others' repentance, because they don't sin, but at the same time they repent.
Zuhd (highest asceticism):
As it is visualized in the state of death, to distance yourself from the world, the love of the world, the material of the world, and lust.
Tawakkul (trust in Allah, giving oneself over to His care):
As in the state of death, to ignore seemingly worldly causes and reasons, and be with Allah. You mustn't say this was like this and that was like that, but know that all is from Haqq.
As in the state of death, to distance yourself from the lust and pleasure of the world, and be happy with your situation, whether you have less or more. Our Prophet (saws) says, "Kana'a is a treasure that cannot be depleted."
Uzlat (devotional seclusion):
As in the state of death, to cut your relation with the created, and living in seclusion, to find wahdet (oneness) in the outpost of kasret (multiplicity). It is contemplating Haqq with your inner, and being with the created with your outer.
Tawajjuh (turning towards):
As in the state of death, to turn your face to Allah, leaving other than Allah behind you. It is to fall in love with Haqq and His messenger, and to be annihilated in Allah. Whoever turns to the Messenger (saws) will be happy in both worlds.
To be patient against the desires and pleasures of nafs. To be as in the state of death. In the state of death, a lot of animals and bugs eat a person's corpse, but he doesn't get up and say, "What are you doing?" He can't even move, because his soul has cut its relation with his corpse. You have to be patient with all adversities and afflictions, as in the state of that corpse. The Prophet Job's (saws) patience is an example for this. Allah tests human beings in this world for patience and endurance. To them, and especially the ones whom He loves, He gives loss of property and children. He puts them into a variety of hardships to see if the servant of Allah will say, "Eyvallah, it's all right, these hardships come from Haqq." If a person is patient in the face of all such adversities, he will attain higher degrees.
Ridza (cheerful acceptance):
To leave your nafs, accept Allah's decrees, to surrender to things that have been decided from the beginning, and not to object to Allah's doings.
Zikr (remembrance of Allah):
To distance yourself from mentioning the maasiwah (other than Allah), and to say "Wana hayti qalbi an maasiwallah" ("O my Lord, take maasiwah out of my heart, may my tongue not make zikr of other than You"). Allah the Most High says, " I am closer to the person who makes zikr of Me much." Making zikr of Allah is like a blacksmith shaping iron with a hammer. The only thing is that you have to do it in the proper way.
Muraqaba (vigilant contemplation):
To leave your supposed power, strength, and what you know behind, to be in the presence of the divine, where there is no trace of you in you, and contemplate Haqq, as you are annihilated in It. The state between the archangelic world and the divine world is the state of Haqqiqa. Whoever reaches to that degree will attain the secret of the universe.