Home Faqihul Ummah Mawa`iz (Discourses) Discourse 15 - Soul Searching and Following the Sunnat

Discourse 15 - Soul Searching and Following the Sunnat

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نحمده و نصلي على رسوله الكريم

Hafiz Muhammad and Hadhrat Madani (rahimahullah)

In the district of Meerut, lived a buzurg by the name of Hafiz Muhammad Husain Sahib (rahimahullah). He was from among the special mureeds of Moulana Gangohi (rahimahullah). His legs, from below the knee, were bent inwards.

Thus, if he desired to go anywhere, he had to be carried on someone’s back. After the partition of India, he wrote a letter to Moulana Husain Ahmad Madani (rahimahullah). (He had also written to many other great ulama such as Moulana Aazaad and Moulana Habeeb-ur-Rahman Ludhyanwi (rahimahullah). The contents of his letters and the replies he received from them are unknown.) In his letter to Moulana Madani (rahimahullah) he wrote: “You were previously a mujaahid fighting the English for the freedom of India. Hence, the use of black dye was permissible for you. Allah Ta‘ala has made you successful in your mission and you are the leader of the nation. The usage of black dye is no longer permissible for you.”

“Insha-Allah, I shall adhere to your instruction,” assured Hadhrat Moulana Husain Ahmad (rahimahullah). Thereafter, Moulana Madani (rahimahullah) never used black dye.

Hafiz Muhammad Husain (rahimahullah) regularly visited Moulana Madani (rahimahullah). He once came to visit Moulana Madani (rahimahullah) at the time he was having his meals. Moulana (rahimahullah) was entertaining a few guests, one of whom was ill. Hence, a special diet dish was prepared for the sick guest.

Moulana Madani’s (rahimahullah) practice was to serve the meal to the guests on a large platter, which was placed at the centre of a round dastarkhaani (eating cloth). The rotis were wrapped in a cloth, which Moulana (rahimahullah) kept by him. Before partaking of the meal, Moulana (rahimahullah) would place two rotis before each guest. During the meal, he vigilantly observed his guests and gave another roti to the one who had only a small portion remaining. On that particular day, when Hafiz Muhammad Husain (rahimahullah) arrived and contrary to the normal practice, two different dishes were served. “Moulana,” exclaimed Hafiz Muhammad Husain (rahimahullah), “were two dishes ever placed on the dastarkhaan of Nabi (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam)?”

Moulana Madani (rahimahullah) did not cite the hadeeth which establishes that two different dishes were served on the dastarkhaan of Nabi (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) but rather humbly replied, “Hadhrat, you want us to adhere to the sunnat. We are the slaves of our stomachs. How can we ever adhere to the sunnat?”

Moulana Ahmad Shah (rahimahullah) and Mufti Mahmood Sahib (rahimahullah)

Moulana Ahmad Shah Sahib (rahimahullah) of Hasanpur, Moradabad was a very pious person. He had a special relationship with Moulana Gangohi (rahimahullah). I (Mufti Mahmood Sahib [(rahimahullah)]) had the opportunity to meet him when he came to Deoband.

“Where do you reside?” he asked me affectionately.

I replied: “Gangoh.”

“What are you studying?”

“Bukhaari Shareef, Tirmizi Shareef, etc.,” I barely mustered up the courage to reply.

“Do you revise your work often?” he questioned.

“It has always been my practice that at the beginning of every new year, I revise all the kitaabs of the previous year.”

“In that case,” he commanded, “stretch forth your hand so that I may kiss it.”

Crying over one’s actions

Towards the end of his life, he (Moulana Ahmad Shah Sahib) suffered some type of a sickness affecting his bladder. He passed urine by using a tube attached to a bottle, which he held in his hands. He even had to travel in this condition.

Someone once asked him: “What is the cause of this sickness?”

“My evil actions,” he lamented.

Puzzled, the man asked: “What evil actions are you talking about?”

“For years on end, I was able to pass urine a few times in a day with ease and comfort. However, not once did this ungrateful tongue of mine ever express gratitude to Allah Ta‘ala for this favour of His. Which action can be more evil than this? Allah Ta‘ala has warned us of His punishment for ingratitude:

وَلَئِن كَفَرْتُمْ إِنَّ عَذَابِي لَشَدِيدٌ

“And if you are ungrateful, indeed My punishment is severe.” (Ebrahim:7)

Moulana Ahmad Shah (rahimahullah) and Moulana Madani (rahimahullah)

He (Moulana Ahmad Shah Sahib) once visited Moulana Madani (rahimahullah). When Moulana Madani (rahimahullah) saw him, instead of embracing him and shaking his hand, Moulana bent down to kiss his feet. Moulana Ahmad Shah (rahimahullah) moved his foot away and did not allow Moulana Madani (rahimahullah) to kiss it. However, Moulana Madani (rahimahullah) got to kiss his hand.

“Why do you bring embarrassment upon me?” asked Moulana, feeling ashamed at Moulana Husain Ahmad Madani’s act of respect.

“You bring embarrassment to me by not allowing me to kiss your hand,” pointed out Moulana Husain Ahmad Madani (rahimahullah).

They then proceeded to the musjid, to perform salaah, with Moulana Madani (rahimahullah) walking in front.

Moulana Madani’s (rahimahullah) previous habit when entering the musjid was to raise his feet backwards, one at a time, and in this way remove his shoes. However, one sincere mureed was the cause of Moulana abandoning this habit.

(It happned as follows:) Once, when Moulana (rahimahullah) was raising his foot to remove his shoe, this mureed came to assist Moulana and took hold of both legs of Moulana. This caused Moulana to fall and injure his knees. From then onwards Moulana Madani (rahimahullah) began removing his shoes outside the musjid.

On that day, when Moulana removed his shoes and entered the musjid, Moulana Ahmad Sahib came from behind, picked up Moulana’s shoes, kissed them and said: “O Allah Ta‘ala! That slave of Yours (Moulana Madani) kissed my hand. I make You the witness that I have kissed his shoes in lieu thereof.”

Moulana Ihtishaam-ul-Hasan and Moulana Ahmad Shah (rahimahullah)

There was a Moulana Ihtishaam-ul-Hasan Sahib (rahimahullah) who resided in Khandla. His two brothers are still alive (this was at the time of the discourse), one is Moulana Izhaar-ul-Hasan Sahib and the other is Moulana Iftikhaar-ul-Hasan Sahib.

Moulana Ihtishaam-ul-Hasan Sahib mentioned that Moulana Ahmad Shah Sahib (rahimahullah) said to him on one occasion: “Moulana Ihtishaam. I have to go to Calcutta. A friend has requested me to lay the foundation of his house. My desire is that you accompany me and I shall get you to lay the foundation.”

Moulana agreed to accompany Moulana Ahmad Shah Sahib (rahimahullah). Before embarking on the journey, Moulana Ahmad Shah (rahimahullah) further added: “Brother Ihtishaam, you will be the ameer (leader) for this journey.”

On reaching Calcutta, Moulana Ahmad Shah, who was accustomed to remaining in a state of wudhu always, contracted severe diarrhoea. During the night he had to get up on numerous occasions to relieve himself and would make wudhu thereafter.

“Hadhrat,” Moulana Ihtishaam remarked. “You have appointed me as your ameer. Your ameer is now requesting you not to wake up for Tahajjud Salaah tonight.”

On hearing this, Moulana Ahmad Shah (rahimahullah) remained silent; he neither agreed nor disagreed. It seemed as though he was engaged in deep thought. When there was about an hour left for subh saadiq, Moulana Ahmad (rahimahullah) gently shook Moulana Ihtishaam’s foot. Moulana Ihtishaam (rahimahullah) awoke and saw Moulana Ahmad (rahimahullah) crying uncontrollably. He asked Moulana Ahmad (rahimahullah) the reason why he was crying, to which he replied: “I had taken bay’at at the hands of Moulana Gangohi (rahimahullah) 57 years ago. Since then, I have never missed a single Tahajjud Salaah. You are my ameer and you have asked me not to perform Tahajjud tonight. (To obey the ameer is necessary.) Therefore, I beg you in the name of Moulana Gangohi (rahimahullah) to allow me to perform Tahajjud.”

“Hadhrat, I permit you to do as you please,” replied Moulana Ihtishaam, obviously taken aback by Moulana Ahmad Shah’s request.

When the time came for laying the foundation, Moulana Ahmad (rahimahullah) laid the foundation himself and did not allow Moulana Ihtishaam to lay it. On reaching the guesthouse, Moulana Ihtishaam asked: “Hadhrat, you took me along to lay the foundation. Why did you lay it yourself?”

“Yes, I had brought you to lay the foundation because you are a pious person,” admitted Moulana Ahmad Shah. “I did not want to lay it myself out of fear that my sins will have a bad effect on the foundation. However, I had seen that the trench was very deep and there was a danger of you injuring yourself. I thought to myself that Allah Ta‘ala desires to use you for the service of deen; therefore, you should not take the risk of injuring yourself by laying the foundation. If anyone should take the risk and face the danger, it should be me because I am old and a non-entity. If I get hurt or even die, that would not be a loss.”

The person, who had invited Moulana Ahmad (rahimahullah) to lay the foundation, gave him 950 rupees as a gift. Moulana Ahmad (rahimahullah) took only the amount which covered his travel expenses and returned the rest of the money. Thereafter, they went to the local musjid to perform their salaah. After the salaah, someone gave Moulana Ahmad (rahimahullah) fifteen rupees as a gift. Moulana (rahimahullah) accepted it and gave seven and half rupees to Moulana Ihtishaam.

“Hadhrat, why did you reject the gift of 950 rupees and accepted the gift of 15 rupees, and what is the reason for giving me half?” queried Moulana Ihtishaam.

“I am in debt of 950 rupees,” explained Moulana Ahmad, “and I had made du’aa to Allah Ta‘ala to absolve me of this debt. A few days later, I received the letter of this person requesting me to lay the foundation of his house. I thought to myself that the arrangement for the payment of my debt is being made; whereas this is ishraaf-e-nafs (subtle greed of the inner-self). It is impermissible to take anything with such an intention. That is why I did not accept the gift of 950 rupees. However, the person in the musjid gave me 15 rupees as a gift. This was a sunnat gift and consequently I accepted it. It did not amount to ishraaf-e-nafs. And due to the fact that you are my companion in the journey, I gave you half the amount, for ‘Gifts are to be shared’.”

This very same Moulana Ahmad Sahib (rahimahullah) used to complain to Shaikh-ul-Hadeeth (rahimahullah) about his son. One of his major complaints was that his son used to eat bareheaded. Hadhrat Shaikh-ul-Hadeeth (rahimahullah) also some time ate bareheaded. During the summer months he used to be engaged in his work in the Dar-ut-Tasneef (study room) wearing only a lungi and a vest (due to the extreme heat). When he was called for meals, he would go and eat in that very same condition, but whenever he saw Moulana Ahmad (rahimahullah) coming, he used to quickly cover his head with a topee.

A person from Gangoh asked Moulana Ahmad Sahib (rahimahullah) for his mashwarah (opinion) regarding whom he should take bay’at with. Moulana suggested that he should take bay’at at the hands of Moulana Madani (rahimahullah). This person suggested the name of someone else who was not an aalim. Moulana explained to him in a very beautiful manner: “Brother! If you are going for hajj and you have a choice of taking along one of two guides; one who knows the route from here to Delhi and the other knows the route from here to Makkah Mukarramah, which guide will you take?”

His son was Moulana Muhammad who frequently came to Deoband and was the khaleefah of Moulana Madani (rahimahullah).

The great ambition of creating a bond with Allah Ta‘ala

Once, a person had written a letter to Moulana Gangohi (rahimahullah) with the following request: “I wish to sit in your company, provided you link me to Allah Ta‘ala.”

“What is your profession? How will you meet your expenses? For how long will your stay be here?” enquired Moulana Gangohi (rahimahullah).

He replied: “I am a government official and I will be able to meet my expenses from my income. I can take leave for a month and I am accustomed to sleeping on a bed.”

Moulana Gangohi (rahimahullah) wrote back and advised: “There are no beds here. You will have to sleep on a grass mat. There will be no expenses for you here. You will eat whatever I eat. Leave enough money with your wife to cover the expenses for a month, apply for leave immediately and come here. On your arrival, show this letter to me.”

When he arrived at the khanqah and presented the letter, Hadhrat Gangohi (rahimahullah) asked: “You were supposed to have arrived yesterday. Where did you spend one day?”

“I went to meet an old acquaintance,” he disclosed.

“You have such a great ambition to create a bond with Allah Ta‘ala. To achieve this ambition you took out only a month from your valuable life and now from this month also, you wasted another day,” reprimanded Moulana (rahimahullah). He felt very hurt and acknowledged his fault.

Anyhow, he stayed with Hadhrat for the designated period and achieved his goal.

A person used to shiver and wail in Hadhrat Gangohi’s (rahimahullah) majlis. When his anxiety increased, Hadhrat asked him: “Why are you so distressed?”

“I have committed a number of sins and I fear the punishment of Jahannum,” he replied.

“Do not fear,” Moulana said calmly. “I have been promised that whoever has any link with me will not go to Jahannum.” (i.e. by adopting his teachings, they will be punctual on the Shari’ah.)

Nothing incorrect will be uttered by my tongue

Hadhrat Shaikh’s father, Moulana Yahya (rahimahullah), was searching for a mas’alah, which he failed to locate. He related this to Hadhrat Gangohi (rahimahullah) who told him: “Search for it in Shaami.”

“I have checked in Shaami. It is not there,” he declared.

Hadhrat Gangohi (rahimahullah) said: “It is in Shaami.”

“Hadhrat, it is not in Shaami,” insisted Moulana Yahya (rahimahullah).

“Very well! Bring such and such volume to me.” At that time Hadhrat had lost his sigh and was blind. Hadhrat (rahimahullah) opened it in such a way that two-thirds of the pages were on one side and one-third of the pages were on the other side.”

“Look at the bottom of this page,” Hadhrat (rahimahullah) instructed. There was a tone of conviction in Hadhrat’s (rahimahullah) voice.

Moulana Yahya (rahimahullah) checked and commented: “Yes, Hadhrat, the mas’alah is here.”

“I have been promised that nothing incorrect will ever be uttered by my tongue,” Moulana Gangohi (rahimahullah) explained. (Perhaps this promise came in a dream – compiler.)

Hafiz of Mishkaat

There was a person from Lucknow by the name of Moulana Waarith Hasan Sahib (rahimahullah). Moulana Fakhruddeen Sahib (rahimahullah) personally told me (Hadhrat Mufti Mahmood Sahib (rahimahullah) that Moulana Waarith Hasan Sahib (rahimahullah) memorised the entire Mishkaat Shareef and read it to Hadhrat Moulana Shaikh-ul-Hind (rahimahullah) from memory. He also memorised the Qur’aan and read it to Moulana Gangohi (rahimahullah). He had a multitude of mureeds, many of whom were professionals, such as government officials, lawyers, barristers and debt collectors, etc.

He was the mayor of Kora Jahaan Abaad. His son, Bare-Mia, used to stay in Teele Wali Musjid of Lucknow. A person came to Moulana Waarith Hasan (rahimahullah) and said: “I wish to take bay’at at your hands. However, I do not regard these people (he took the names of a few Akaabir from Deoband) as Muslims. If you can accept me for bay’at in this condition of mine, please do so.”

He was a thoroughbred Radhaakhani (follower of Molwi Ahmad Radha Khan). Moulana Waarith (rahimahullah) accepted him for bay’at. After a few days, he came to Moulana trembling and weeping. He was extremely distressed.

“What is the matter?” Moulana queried.

“I have come to repent,” he disclosed. “I had seen in a dream that Moulana Gangohi (rahimahullah) was sitting in front of Nabi (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) in the tashahhud position with his hands on the knees of Nabi (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam).

“He asked: ‘O Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam)! Inform me of my fault. Why do these people speak ill of me?’

“Nabi (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) picked him up by the elbows and embraced him saying: ‘I do not speak ill of you,’ thrice.

“After seeing this dream, I have come to repent and I shall never speak ill of them again.”

Moulana Waarith (rahimahullah) and the saadhu

There was a saadhu in Banaras by the name of Murtaadh. He remained in solitude for 359 days of the year. He was ‘liberated’ from the daily needs experienced by man and he used to sit in one position only. Once a year, he emerged from his ‘abode’ and people flocked from far and wide just to get a glimpse of him. Hadhrat Shah Waarith Hasan (rahimahullah) heard that this saadhu was to emerge from his ‘abode’ on a particular date. Thus, he decided to go and see him.

When the saadhu emerged, he was black as coal and his condition was that of bones held together by skin. He had no meat on his body. His eyebrows were long and sagging. When Hadhrat Shah Waarith (rahimahullah) came near, the saadhu’s body became like a mirror and the reflection of everything could be seen in him. Hadhrat Shah Waarith (rahimahullah) was alarmed (as his spiritual state was disturbed) and immediately made tasawwur of (focused his thoughts towards) Hadhrat Gangohi (rahimahullah). When he had done this, the saadhu’s body returned to its normal state. The saadhu raised his eyebrows and asked: “Who is your spiritual mentor?”

“Moulana Rasheed Ahmad Gangohi (rahimahullah),” was the firm reply from Moulana Shah Waarith (rahimahullah).

The saadhu said: “I see a musjid. Behind the musjid is a courtyard. A wild fig tree is growing therein. There is also a three-door room in the courtyard. Under the fig tree is a bed. Your mentor is lying down on that bed. Your mentor has great spiritual strength.”

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

Question: Is it possible for disbelievers to perform these miracles?

Answer: Those aspects of deen which are accepted by Allah Ta‘ala cannot exist with kufr, but those things which are related purely to spiritual exercises, can exist with kufr. Daily, the lives of many people are saved through operations performed by kaafir doctors. This is not something bestowed due to acceptance. It is a thing earned through effort.

Whoever makes effort in a certain profession, will certainly succeed in it. Shaitaan can perform many miraculous feats despite being a kaafir. His kufr is established in the Qur’aan,

وَاسْتَكْبَرَ وَكَانَ مِنَ الْكَافِرِينَ

“He was proud and is from among the disbelievers.” (Baqarah: 34)

وَإِنَّ الشَّيَاطِينَ لَيُوحُونَ إِلَى أَوْلِيَائِهِمْ

“Indeed the devils whisper to their friends.” (al-An’aam: 121)

To believe such occurrences to be signs of acceptance is a misconception.

Yogi from America

A person from South Africa related the statement of a yogi from America: “What do Muslims have, that we don’t? Whatever they can do, we can do better.”

I (Hadhrat Mufti Mahmood Sahib (rahimahullah) said: “The Muslims have the adherence to the sunnat. Come and see if you can challenge that. The Muslims only wish to attain the adherence to the sunnat and nothing else.”

Once, I needed to travel from Saharanpur on the ‘Day of Holi’ (Hindu festival of colour) and people were playing with colours, spraying them around. I walked to the station while all those colours were being sprayed around. Allah Ta‘ala protected me from being sprayed by them.

I travelled by train to Hardoi. In Hardoi I boarded a rickshaw and a Hindu gentleman joined me on the rickshaw. On reaching a certain place, we came across a mob who had syringes in their hands, filled with coloured water. One of them came towards me and as he attempted to spray me, I raised my hand and said: “Hey! Watch out!”

They backed off and said to one another: “Don’t spray it on anybody and everybody. Look carefully at the person before spraying it.”

“If it was not for you, they would have made a fool of me. Through you, I was saved from them,” beamed the Hindu gentleman.

“You do not accompany me (in religion),” I sighed. “If you do, you will be saved there (in the hereafter) as well. Unfortunately, you have been taught not to join the Muslims and to remain aloof from them.” 

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