Home Faqihul Ummah Mawa`iz (Discourses) Discourse 9 - The passion of our Akaabir for Deeni knowledge

Discourse 9 - The passion of our Akaabir for Deeni knowledge

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نحمده و نصلي على رسوله الكريم

The buzurg and the yogi

A buzurg, who lived in Delhi, trained his disciple in the field of spirituality. The buzurg prescribed various azkaar and other rigorous spiritual exercises for. When the disciple attained competence in this field, he sent him to Multan to preach Islam. The disciple set off with great fervour, zeal and enthusiasm. Whilst on his journey, he reached Paanipat, which was on the way to Multan.

In Paanipat, there was a yogi who used to spiritually attack the hearts and the Imaan of Muslims passing by. This yogi could perform supernatural feats. Thus, when the disciple neared Paanipat, the yogi became aware of it and launched an attack on his heart but failed dismally. The yogi confronted the disciple, and asked: “Who are you? Where are you going? What do you say?”

“I am a Muslim. I am going to Multan and I say La ilaaha illallah.” When the disciple said, “La ilaaha illallah,” he focused on the yogi’s heart resulting in him becoming insane. The yogi fled in haste and advised whomever he met, “Do not go there! Do not go there! There is a Muslim who is reciting La ilaaha illallah. Do not listen to this La ilaaha illallah of his.”

Hence, this very person, who tried to become an obstruction to Deen, became a means of spreading the kalimah.

On the other hand, the buzurg in Delhi, learnt of this incident and became displeased. The disciple also perceived that something was amiss. The spiritual effulgence emanating from his heart had decreased. Therefore, instead of proceeding on his mission, he returned to his spiritual mentor who reproached him: “I had sent you to preach Islam in Multan, not on the way to Multan.”

He kept him in his company for another 40 days and thereafter sent him to Multan, emphasising on preaching Islam in Multan only. The disciple followed his instructions and went to Multan where 80 000 people accepted Islam at his hands.

Subsequently we observe that the understanding and attitude of the Muslims of the past eras was unique. Whatever strength or capability one possessed, be it physical strength, mental, spiritual ability, financial dominance or status, every quality or possession was used for the benefit of deen. This world is not a place of enjoyment, comfort or luxury. It is a place of serving the deen of Allah Ta’ala. Enjoying comforts and luxuries are reserved for the hereafter.

Today, our misconception is that every boon and favour of Allah Ta’ala is solely for us. We feel we have the right to enjoy ourselves. And in this delusion we have forgotten our responsibilities. The bounties bestowed upon us by Allah Ta’ala are ordained to assist us in fulfilling these responsibilities. However, enjoyment and pleasure have become our primary objectives and that which is our primary duty has been forgotten.

In whichever walk of life we may be engaged, we must endeavour to spread the deen of Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) to the best of our ability. Wherever we may be, whoever we may be, everyone should take advantage of every opportunity to disseminate deen: amongst one’s wife, children, relatives, friends and the general community. We must be constantly uttering these words that this is Rasulullah’s (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) teaching for this action and that is Rasulullah’s (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) teaching for that action.

Hadhrat Moulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi رحمة الله عليه once came to Saharanpur for a certain treatment. Shaikh-ul-Hadeeth Moulana Zakariyya Sahib رحمة الله عليه arranged for some talbeenah (a type of medicinal food) to be prepared for Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه. He sent the food together with a letter advising, “I am saying this merely to put your mind at ease. I had informed your doctor of the detailed ingredients of this talbeenah and he assured me that it will not affect your health in any way. Encouragement for eating such food is also mentioned in the Hadeeth because, it strengthens the heart. Please accept and partake of it.”

Shaikh-ul-Hadeeth رحمة الله عليه informed Hadhrat Thanwi رحمة الله عليه of its benefit, its harmlessness and the Deeni point relevant to it, i.e. the encouragement in the hadeeth for eating such food. Shaikh-ul-Hadeeth did not mention the deeni point because Hadhrat Thanwi was unaware of it. No, Hadhrat Thanwi was an ocean of knowledge. Rather, Shaikh-ul-Hadeeth رحمة الله عليه just mentioned it because this was his 24 hour occupation, i.e. continuously spreading the knowledge of deen, thereby ensuring that the mind is moulded in the light of knowledge. Hence, whatever actions are performed, are conducted in the light of knowledge.

Food for thought

Hadhrat Thanwi رحمة الله عليه read the letter and replied, “My beloved friend! In the zeal of your love, you have forgotten to abide by basic principles. From the very beginning, you have mentioned the hadeeth to me. I now fear that, if I dislike this talbeenah, I will dislike something, which has been encouraged in the hadeeth. It would have been better and more comforting to me if I partook of it first then, had I liked it, you mention the hadeeth to me. Now if I dislike something encouraged in the hadeeth, what will be the consequences? I have therefore kept aside your gift and sent this letter and a blank page to you, anticipating a reply.”

Hadhrat Thanwi did not return the gift, taking into consideration Shaikh-ul-Hadeeth’s feelings. We understand that these people had such value for the hadeeth of Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) that they could not even tolerate having a dislike for something encouraged in the hadeeth.

And yet people have the audacity to say that such luminaries show disrespect to Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam). Think for yourself! Is it possible today to find anyone who values and respects ahaadeeth as much as they did?

Shaikh-ul-Hadeeth رحمة الله عليه counter-replied: “Hadhrat! As far as the food being delicious or unappetising, this depends on the expertise of the cook. An expert cook can make a simple meal sumptuous, whereas an incompetent cook can make an expensive dish unpalatable. If the meal is not enjoyable, blame it on the cook’s inability to prepare it properly. The second point to bear in mind is that the hadeeth declares such food to be beneficial, not appetizing. Just as medication may be beneficial in removing an illness, at the same time it may be unpleasant in its taste. A third point to keep in mind is that it is mentioned in one riwaayat (narration): يكره المريض (The sick person will dislike it). Therefore, partake of it without any apprehension.”

Hadhrat Thanwi رحمة الله عليه thereafter partook of it but did not comment whether it was appetising or not.

Just the two of us

Our pious predecessors were imbued with the fervour for acquiring knowledge. They kept the ahaadeeth before them and desired to practise on each one. Once, someone sent a plate of food to Shaikh-ul-Hadeeth رحمة الله عليه. The instruction was to partake of it and distribute it amongst those present with him. Shaikh-ul-Hadeeth had it distributed and at the end only Shaikh-ul-Hadeeth and the person distributing the food were left.

“Now only me and you remain,” Shaikh-ul-Hadeeth remarked.

What was the intention of this statement from Shaikh-ul-Hadeeth رحمة الله عليه? It was to conform to the action of Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam).

On one occasion, someone gifted a bowl of milk to Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam). Hadhrat Abu Hurairah (radhiyallahu anhu), who was suffering from starvation, thought to himself that this bowl would be sufficient for me only. Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) asked Hadhrat Abu Hurairah (radhiyallahu anhu) to call the Ashaab-us-Suffah to partake of the milk.

Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) then instructed Hadhrat Abu Hurairah (radhiyallahu anhu) to serve them. Through the miracle of Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam), everyone drank to their satisfaction from this one bowl of milk until Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) and Abu Hurairah (radhiyallahu anhu) were left. Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) then said: “Only me and you are left.”

Such was their adherence to the sunnah. They had the knowledge for every aspect of deen at their fingertips.

A sweet bargain

Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه had many pre-conditions for accepting gifts. He did not accept gifts in a hurry. However, there were some exceptions to the rule. Once, someone brought a small amount of red sugar and offered it as a gift to Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه. Moulana accepted it and distributed it amongst those who were present.

Thereafter, this person expressed his desire of becoming a mureed of Moulana. Moulana replied that, this was not in conformity to the rules of becoming a mureed. He acknowledged that he was ignorant, of the rules but his sole desire was to be accepted as a mureed. Moulana refused his request.

“Very well. I want my sugar back,” he disclosed.

“Was this the reason for giving the sugar?” Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه queried.

He replied in the affirmative.

“Why did you not say so?”

“You did not ask, that is why I did not inform you,” he quipped.

“Very well. How much was the sugar?’

“I do not want the cash value,” he revealed. “I want the very same sugar which I had given to you.”

Seen that he was in an inescapable situation, Moulana initiated him as a mureed. He then asked for some zikr to be prescribed to him. Moulana prescribed some zikr for him, whereas it was Moulana’s rule that zikr was not prescribed at the very inception of bay’at. Thereafter, he requested to be given a personal possession of Moulana’s as a blessing. Moulana رحمة الله عليه gave him a tasbeeh. He then asked for the privilege of making khidmat. Moulana stretched out his leg and after massaging it for a while, he departed. Moulana later commented on this episode.

“He was very fortunate that all his demands were met,” exclaimed Moulana.

Cool as a cucumber

Once, a farmer brought a cucumber as a gift for Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه.

“Why did you not ask me for permission before presenting this gift?” demanded Moulana.

He acknowledged his error.

“What do you think is a suitable punishment for this error?” asked Moulana.

“Whatever Moulana suggests,” he replied softly.

“At that point is a notice outlining the rules of presenting a gift,” Moulana said, pointing towards a pillar. “Go read it and then return and ask me permission for presenting a gift. If I give you permission, you may present the gift.”

“But I have already read that notice,” he argued.

“Now you have annoyed me,” scolded Moulana.

He acknowledged his mistake again and Moulana asked him to affix an appropriate punishment, to which he replied, “Whatever Moulana suggests.”

Moulana رحمة الله عليه instructed him to take his cucumber and return home. Thereafter, return to the khanqah, request his (Moulana’s) permission for presenting a gift and present it if he is given the consent to do so.

“How must I go all the way back to my farm and then come all the way back to the khanqah?” he objected.

Moulana frowned. “Now you have upset me even further.”

“I have erred,” he admitted.

As a punishment, Moulana told him to take his cucumber and go home, never to return. He picked up his cucumber, made salaam and walked out. Moulana merely replied to his salaam.

Sweet talk

Some of those who were given permission to present gifts, used to behave strangely as well. One individual came as a guest to the khanqah. At that time, there was no station in Thanabawan, and one had to disembark at Jalalabad. He hired a servant to transport three earthenware jars to the khanqah. When they reached the khanqah, a dispute broke out between the two regarding the payment for the service rendered. This person wanted to give a lesser amount than the servant was asking for. Eventually, they settled on a price. Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه came to the door, greeted and shook his hands. The person presented the three jars to Moulana.

Moulana رحمة الله عليه asked, “What is this?”

“This is baalu shaahee (a type of sweetmeat) which I have brought for you as a present,” he smiled.

“Did you ask for permission?”

He replied in the affirmative. Moulana asked for the proof. He produced a piece of paper, the contents of which were: “I desire to have delicious baalu shaahee prepared to present to Moulana. Please allow me to bring some,” to which Moulana رحمة الله عليه had replied: “I give permission for three pieces only.”

“I had permitted only three pieces,” Moulana pointed out.

“These are only three pieces,” he beamed. “I had asked the confectioner to prepare three pieces of baalu shaahee, each piece being as big as an earthenware jar. It was my heartfelt desire to present a larger amount of mithaai (sweetmeat) to Moulana, but Moulana had restricted it to three pieces. The solution which I came up with, in order to fulfil my desire and at the same time abide by Moulana’s restriction, was to make each piece as big as an earthenware jar.”

Cut the long story short

An aalim used to write very lengthy letters concerning his reformation. Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه prohibited him from communicating with him, in the future via letters that were longer than three lines. The aalim wrote the next letter, just as lengthy, on a piece of paper extended in breadth, in three lines.

“See what he has understood my letter to mean!” Moulana sighed.

Moulana did not read his letter and wrote back stating that each line should be as long as a nose. An individual who was present at that time, remarked, “Specify also that it should not be a foot long. I say this because if he writes a letter, which is a foot long, it will still be okay because Moulana did not affix a length for the nose. Just now he may write a letter with each line as long as an elephant’s nose and this will make the matter more serious.”

Hadhrat Thanwi رحمة الله عليه and Hadhrat Madani رحمة الله عليه

These types of incidents used to occur frequently. However, there were exceptions to Moulana’s rules. Once, someone asked Moulana Husain Ahmad Madani رحمة الله عليه to describe his very first journey to Thanabawan and what had transpired.

“The train reached the station at night,” Moulana narrated. “I placed my bedding on my head and went from Jalalabad to Thanabawan. I enquired where the khanqah was and knocked on the door.”

“Who is there?” cried the caretaker from behind the door.

“Husain Ahmad,” I responded.

“The rule of the khanqah is that once the door is closed at night, it will not be opened until the morning,” and in so saying, the caretaker retired to his room.

“I thought to myself that where can I go now? I am not acquainted with anyone here. Eventually, I found out where Moulana Thanwi’s رحمة الله عليه house was, spread out my bedding in front of his door and lay down to sleep. In the morning, whilst rolling up my bedding, Moulana opened the door and asked: “Who is there?”

“Husain Ahmad.”

“What are you doing here at this part of the morning?” Moulana asked, puzzled.

I related the events that transpired during the night. He took me to the khanqah and explained to the khaadims that I was excluded from the rule. The door should be opened for me whenever I arrived.”

Thus, there were a few people who were excluded from Moulana Thanwi’s رحمة الله عليه rules. Those who were not excluded, however, were dealt with very differently.

Moulana was once very angry with someone. As a way of reformation, Moulana expelled him from the khanqah and instructed a khaadim to remove his luggage. Another person, who had previously spent lengthy periods in the company of Moulana, had just arrived. He felt sorry for the person being expelled and said to the khaadim, “What is this? How can you take him out of the khanqah with his luggage?”

The khaadim informed Moulana of this person’s statement. Moulana instructed the khaadim to help him out of the khanqah as well.

“Did he come here for his reformation or mine?”

The gift watch

Once, Moulana Khaleel Ahmad Saharanpuri رحمة الله عليه and Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه were travelling by train. They stopped at a certain place and one of Moulana Thanwi’s رحمة الله عليه khaadims who resided there, presented him with a watch as a gift. A little while later, when they were alone, Moulana Saharanpuri رحمة الله عليه said to Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه, “If you do not require that watch, will you sell it to me?”

“Hadhrat, I belong to you and my possessions belong to you. Why are you even mentioning about purchasing it? I present it as a gift to you,” Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه answered.

“Since I have already initiated the sale, it cannot be given as a gift now as it can be construed to be a very subtle way of asking for it,” Moulana Saharanpuri رحمة الله عليه pointed out. “If you had given it to me before my offer to purchase it that would have been a different matter.”

After some discussion, a price was fixed and Moulana Saharanpuri رحمة الله عليه purchased the watch.

This entire transaction, however, did not remain a secret. Somehow the wind seemed to have spread the news. Nowadays, news is spread via airwaves through the radio. The news of the deal reached the ears of the person who had originally given the watch to Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه.

“If I wanted, I could have presented some cash to Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه. The whole purpose of giving the watch was so that Moulana could use it,” he lamented.

The sorrow of this person reached the ears of Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه. Thus, Moulana approached Hadhrat Saharanpuri رحمة الله عليه and respectfully asked, “Moulana! Could you please return the watch which I had sold to you?”

“Was there an option in the sale?” queried Moulana Saharanpuri رحمة الله عليه.

Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه replied in the negative but informed Moulana Saharanpuri رحمة الله عليه about the sorrow expressed by his friend.

“Was the condition made in the sale that if the one who had given the gift was unhappy, the watch must be returned?” added Moulana Saharanpuri رحمة الله عليه.

Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه again replied in the negative upon which Moulana Saharanpuri رحمة الله عليه stated that the deal was then complete.

“Since the deal is complete, let us now cancel it,” Moulana Thanwi suggested.

“In order to cancel the transaction, both parties need to be happy and I am not pleased with this proposal. So this deal cannot be cancelled.”

“Hadhrat, you are my senior,” pleaded Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه. “Seniors usually show a lot of kindness to their juniors. Please be kind to me and return the watch.”

What was the reasoning behind this statement? Moulana Thanwiرحمة الله عليه realised that he was not progressing in terms of principle, so he began to exploit the bounds of friendship.

“Certainly, I would have returned the watch to you,” assured Moulana Saharanpuri رحمة الله عليه. “But my friend made me his proxy to buy a watch for him. I purchased this watch from you with the intention of purchasing it for him. He made me a proxy in so far as purchasing it, not selling it. Therefore, I have no right to cancel the deal and return the watch to you.”

The next day in the majlis, when the khaadim had arrived, Moulana Saharanpuri رحمة الله عليه returned the watch to Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه.

“Hadhrat, what about the explanation you had given me yesterday about not having the right to cancel the deal?” Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه asked, baffled.

“The matter is as I had stated. However, I have complete confidence in my friend that, if I inform him of my action, he will not become displeased.”

Whatever factors were discussed amongst our pious predecessors were always linked to ‘ilm. From this single anecdote, how many masaa’il can be extracted! An important etiquette of presenting a gift was learnt from this incident, i.e. the giver should not become displeased with the decision taken by the recipient because he has the volition to do as he pleases with the gift. When people listen attentively to the anecdotes of our pious predecessors, they gain tremendous benefit.

Hadhrat Raipuri رحمة الله عليه and Shaikh-ul-Hadeeth رحمة الله عليه

Once, Moulana Raipuri رحمة الله عليه came to Saharanpur. It was the period of struggle for political power between the Majlis-e-Ahraar and the Muslim league. Moulana Habeeb-ur-Rahman Ludhyanwi رحمة الله عليه, leader of the Ahraar had also arrived. A khaadim of Moulana Raipuri رحمة الله عليه, who was a resident of Baht and a supporter of the Muslim League, entered the room. Moulana Raipuri رحمة الله عليه stood up out of respect for him. Shaikh-ul-Hadeeth Moulana Zakariyya رحمة الله عليه also stood up. (At that time he was able to walk easily.)

This khaadim paid no attention to Moulana Habeeb-ur-Rahman رحمة الله عليه nor did he shake hands with him. He completed his work with Moulana Raipuri رحمة الله عليه and left. Afterwards, Moulana Habeeb-ur- Rahman رحمة الله عليه said: “I think I have erred. When such a buzurg stood up out of respect, I should have also stood up. The point that prevented me from doing so was a hadeeth of Baihaqi which states that whoever humbles himself before a wealthy person, a portion of his deen is destroyed.”

Shaikh-ul-Hadeeth رحمة الله عليه remarked: “It is mentioned in another Hadeeth:

إذا جاءكم كريم قوم فأكرموه

When an honourable person of a community comes to you, then honour him.”

Moulana Habeeb-ur-Rahman رحمة الله عليه then said, “Hadhrat, there seems to be a contradiction between these two ahaadeeth. How do you reconcile between them?”

Shaikh-ul-Hadeeth رحمة الله عليه requested Moulana Raipuri رحمة الله عليه to elucidate on this matter. However, Moulana Raipuri رحمة الله عليه insisted on Shaikh-ul-Hadeeth رحمة الله عليه explaining the matter and reconciling between the two ahaadeeth. Shaikh-ul-Hadeeth رحمة الله عليه agreed to reconcile between the two Ahaadeeth on condition that Moulana Raipuri رحمة الله عليه freely criticises his answer if need be.

“If the answer is correct, how can I say that it is incorrect?” objected Moulana Raipuri رحمة الله عليه. “I shall have to agree with it.”

Shaikh-ul-Hadeeth رحمة الله عليه then explained, “The hadeeth of Baihaqi states:

من تواضع لغني لغنائه ذهب ثلثا دينه

Whoever humbles himself for an affluent person due to his affluence, two-thirds of his deen has been ruined.

One hadeeth uses the word ‘tawaadhu’ (to humble oneself) and the other has the word ‘ikraam’ (to honour someone). Humility is an action related to the heart. The heart has been created to humble itself, subjugate itself to Allah Ta’ala alone. As far as honouring someone is concerned, that is related to the external limbs. Therefore, humbling oneself and honouring someone are two totally different actions. Thus no contradiction remains between the two ahaadeeth.” All were extremely happy with this answer.

“I become so elated whenever I am able to reconcile between two apparently contradictory ahaadeeth that I do not experience such elation in anything else,” admitted Shaikh-ul-Hadeeth رحمة الله عليه.

This is what an aalim’s outlook towards deen should be. At every moment of our life, be it whilst walking, talking, sitting or eating, at every juncture, we must discuss ‘ilmi points and then point out the practice of Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) for that specific action. The result of this will be that the lifestyle of Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) will always be in front of us and we will realise that we have been created to lead our lives only in the manner shown to us by Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam).

Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه has written that the aim of sitting in the company of the pious is not to gain knowledge but rather the drive to practise upon knowledge acquired. Moulana Gangohi رحمة الله عليه has written that when Ulama take bay’at at the hands of one who is not an aalim, their aim is not to learn masaa’il from him. No! Their aim is that the knowledge, which they had gained and were not practicing upon due to the laziness of their nafs, will become easy to practise after establishing contact with a friend of Allah Ta’ala.

Hadhrat Gangohi رحمة الله عليه and Haji Imdaadullah رحمة الله عليه

On one occasion, Hadhrat Gangohi رحمة الله عليه was a guest at Haji Imdaadullah’s رحمة الله عليه place in Makkah Mukarramah. Haji Sahib رحمة الله عليه accepted an invitation to attend a meelaad. He extended the invitation to Moulana Gangohi رحمة الله عليه who declined in an extremely beautiful manner: “Hadhrat, in India we prevent people from attending meelaads because of the evil practices that take place. Here, the meelaads are not contaminated with these evil practices. Unfortunately, people will not look at this point. If the people of India learn about this, they will say, ‘Here in India he stops us from attending meelaads, but there in Hijaaz he himself attends with his Shaikh.’ Therefore, please excuse me from attending the meelaad with you.”

Haji Sahib رحمة الله عليه attended the meelaad.

“Moulana,” he remarked upon his return. “I would not have experienced such happiness by you accompanying me like the happiness I had experienced in you excusing yourself.”

When Haji Sahib رحمة الله عليه had left for the meelaad, one of Moulana’s khaadims had surreptitiously followed him.

“Had Moulana رحمة الله عليه seen the practices prevalent at that meelaad, he would not have prevented it from taking place,” he disclosed upon his return.

Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه has commented on this matter: “This entire matter is based upon a principle wherein Imaam Abu Hanifah رحمة الله عليه and Imaam Shaafi’ee رحمة الله عليه differ. Imaam Abu Hanifah رحمة الله عليه says that if evil practices are introduced in an act of worship, which is mustahab, then it ceases to remain mustahab – it becomes makrooh. Imaam Shaafi’ee رحمة الله عليه says that such an action will still remain mustahab. However, the evil practices introduced in it must be removed. Thus, Moulana Gangohi رحمة الله عليه had chosen the view of Imaam Abu Hanifah رحمة الله عليه that such evil practices had entered into the meelaad gatherings that emancipation from them is difficult. Therefore it becomes makrooh.

On the other hand, Haji Sahib رحمة الله عليه chose the view of Imaam Shaafi’ee رحمة الله عليه that it remains mustahab. However, it should be cleansed of the evil practices introduced in it. It is therefore written in the kitaabs that, in principle, these gatherings are correct but the additions made to them are incorrect and to stay away from them is practically impossible.”

Tawakkul

Moulana Madani رحمة الله عليه once narrated the following incident: “At one stage, my elder brother was the scribe for Moulana Gangohi رحمة الله عليه. Moulana رحمة الله عليه was once stationed in Bhawalpur when a person wrote to Moulana expressing his desire to resign from his work and spend time in Moulana’s company. Moulana Gangohi رحمة الله عليه prohibited him from doing so. My brother asked: “Hadhrat, why are you prohibiting him from doing so? Will it not benefit him?”

“Certainly there is benefit in coming and sitting in seclusion,” explained Hadhrat Gangohi رحمة الله عليه. “However, by seeking permission to do so indicates that seclusion will not benefit him at this present moment in time.”

Moulana Nanotwi رحمة الله عليه once asked Haji Sahib رحمة الله عليه, “Working and earning is contrary to tawakkul. Should I leave my work?”

“When you do not have the need to ask, then leave your work,” advised Haji Sahib رحمة الله عليه.

Moulana Thanwi رحمة الله عليه has explained that asking is an indication of doubt, and doubt is proof that one’s tawakkul is incomplete.

Anyway, the point of this talk is that the disposition of our pious predecessors was an ‘ilmi one, such that they were very vigilant in observing the sunnah in all spheres of life. May Allah Ta’ala bless us all with the taufeeq to lead our lives in accordance to the sunnah as well. Aameen.

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