Notes from Sheikh Nuh Ha Mim Keller’s Suhba
– that Allah disposes souls in such ways that some are repulsed by others and some are attracted by others
– if people are hurting one, offending one, etc, it is because Allah out of His mercy wants one to turn away from placing one’s hope in people to turning to Allah (those people are sent to you by Allah as a test, so don’t see the people, but see Allah instead)
– Allah makes you fed up with ‘worldlings’ so that one is concerned with nothing but Him
– be with people who are travelling to Allah; these should be one’s friends
– the more friends you have amongst the saliheen the better chance you have of gaining their intercession in the next world
– prefer others to oneself; if someone does something unbecoming in your company, pretend you didn’t notice it; if they do something against the shariah, advise them in private (and not in public which would be discracing them)
– the best daw’ah is at work; call people by one’s state not by pamphlets; at work, have nobility of character, serenity and be excellent in your work
– care not what other people think about you, be content with what Allah knows about you (and if you can’t do that, there’s a serious problem)
– have taqwa, have taqwa, have taqwa; the dhikr doesn’t work unless there is taqwa
– the dhikr is to polish the ruh; the ruh can only see the begininglessness eternality of Allah, while the eyes only see what manifests in space and time
– the ruh can’t behold Allah if its filled with junk – pictures, sins, music, etc
– if a low thought enters one mind, send salawat on the Prophet, upon him be blessings and peace, to banish it
– be aware of the time one lives in; avoid the comerciality of the modern world which makes you want things you don’t need
– don’t demand your own rights, but demand instead the rights of Allah; don’t be apologetic, don’t water down Islam to make it attractive to the people
– the Truth doesn’t need people, people need the Truth
– the dunya is that which is not for the sake of Allah; there should be nothing for the dunya in one’s actions; one’s sleeping and eating, for example, should be with the intention of strengthening one’s body for Allah
– leave bad company
– those whose beginning of the path is illuminated will find the end of their path illuminated
– those in the tariqa are required to change; if one has been in the tariq for X amount of years and hasn’t changed, then one hasn’t benefitted yet
– the murid should not miss the gatherings of the tariqa
– be proud of being Muslims, but not arrogant; arrogance is to consider oneself superior to others; arrogance is vile and corrupts and ruins the heart
– the older one gets, the more one’s ibadah should increase
– addictions suck the humanity out of people
– to see how close one is to Allah, consider your heart in the salah – if your heart is absorbed and present with Allah, then good; if not, then not
– if one sees anything good in one’s inward or outward one should say ‘masha’Allah la quwwata illabillah’; this is from the Qur’an; gratitude increases one’s blessings
– if one could see the unseen, one would not choose anything except what Allah has already made happen
– some say ‘look at how they treat the Muslims there, look at how they oppress the Muslims there’ – no! look at how YOU are oppressing yourself with your disobedience to Allah
– one should have a regular wird of the Qur’an
– have taqwa, follow the sunnah inwardly and out, care not what other people think of you
– the Divine Presence is like paradise; absence from Allah is like Hell
– fiqh of minorities, according to Damascene ulema, is falsehood
– music is haram and has a negative effect on one’s soul; Ibn Hazm was not an authority on hadith so his saying that the hadiths on music are not sahih is not accepted; Imam al-Ghazali’s position on music has been mistranslated; the Imam in his Ihya says that breaking musical instruments is a part of enjoining the good and forbidding the evil; the Imam’s position on sama’ is listening to good things such as Qur’an and qasidas
– those who permit music, films, etc, just don’t get it; they don’t realise the damage it does to the soul
– people will respect you if you are proud (meaning having self-respect) of who you are; you will not be respected by watering down and compromising islam
– that which the Prophet, upon him be blessings and peace, brings, take it; that which he forbids, shun it
– comitting zina with one’s ruh (fantasizing, etc) is haram and damages the ruh
– don’t give your nafs a rukhsa
– the source of bad character is love of this world
Q: How does one make one’s spouse keep up his duties?
A: Inspire yourself first. Words that come from the heart affect the heart..
Look at one’s own duties. have SIDQ towards Allah.
Q: What if one has an addiction to pornography?
A: Someone who fights Allah will not win. They have to UNPLUG. Ask for Allah’s help.
People are trying to sell you things. Where do you draw the line? PICTURES – images.
DHAHARATUL HIKMA – “The Divine Wisdom is manifest” Shaykh explained how in recent years have shown how people get ideas for child molestation etc. from pictures. Pictures have an enormous effect on the psyche.
The addiction to adrenalin – don’t get sucked into it and ruin yourself.
With ibadah, sabr and dhikr – Allah gives happiness, it doesn’t come from addiction.
Q: Why don’t you stress the outward, such as keeping the beard…?
A: The beard is obligatory… Find what the shari’ah says and follow it.
Q: Being with my family is ruining me, what do I do?
A: Don’t compromise your Islam…
The first sin of Iblis was to look at other people. You can’t put yourself up by putting others down. Whoever finds good in himself should praise Allah. Seek forgiveness monring and night. IKHLAS [sincerity] cannot be perfected without MURAQABA [vigilance]. ISTIGHFAR is the way that the Prophet (saws) shows us to ask forgiveness. If you can’t have the reflection of past deeds in every prayer, at least do it once a day.
When the heart is attached to Allah, one finds NOOR. In the meantime, make sure the work is happening. Don’t give yourself a ruksa….The Prophet (saws) said to Abdullah ibn Abbas:
“Watch out for Allah, and He will watch out for you…..If you seek help, seek help from Allah”
Q: What if one has left bad friends, but still feels desire for the things one used to do?
A: Make TAWBAH [repentance] – it softens the heart. Desire for these old things is NIFAQ [hypocrisy].
Make the du’a ‘ALLAHUMMA ‘AJIRNI MINANNAR’ and imagine Allah protects one from the Fire.
Say durood instead of listening to the shaytaan – be compulsive about that. Getting rid of hawa is a person who doesn’t have a lot of extra movements. The sign of love (He loves them, and they love Him) is that he doesn’t have any business other than his Beloved.
Some of the characteristics of those people on the path are
– spending on people, preferring others to oneself , spending on those who won’t give anything back
– keeping the company of the pious
No one ate anything superior than to eat from the work of your own hand.
Imam al Ghazali said you need two types of knowledge:
1) Fiqh: Whats for you and against you at this moment. This is very important.
2) Tibb: Preventative medicine of how not to get sick – so that the horse walks long enough to get you to your destination.
I haven’t seen any work greater than salaat. Make a plan to get it going, so that there’s hudoor (presence of heart) in your salaat. Take a moment to see whats in front of you.
Mujahidah – everything that contravenes taqwa, we get rid of it and keep it that way. there has to be a quantam of taqwa and emaan to tread the path.
Why did Allah make things haram? Because it is of no benefit. As long as one eats others’ flesh one won’t feel right, Thikr works as long as you have the conditions. Whoevers beginning is illumined, his ending is illumined.
Whoever seeks the highest will spend his nights awake. You want honour and then you sleep all night? Whoever you find true in his resolve and himma then realise he is one of those whom Allah has chosen. Whoever is relying entirely on Allah, consigning his matter to Allah, the end of his path is Allah. And whoevers beginning is through Allah, will find his end with Him. This means that one knows la hawla wa la quwatta illah billah – the outward manifestation of this is that one makes du’a and asks Allah for help. He doesn’t see any strength within himself. He sees his good works as a gift from Allah.
How many a murid has never changed? Even though he’s been in the tariqa for many years. One of the reasons people don’t change is that they don’t take their fiqh seriously. They neglected the basis so they were barred from ever arriving.
Fiqh is the operational level of your taqwa. Practice without any knowledge is a crime. you can get a fatwa for anything in these times. Fiqh is the reliable mutun (texts) of your mathab. Sacred Learning without putting it into practice is a means without an end, pretty useless.
The one with amal (practice) and no ‘ilm (knowledge) is like a foot with no shoe. The one with ‘ilm and no amal is like a shoe that doesn’t have a foot. This is even worse than the first one because at least the foot can stumble along even without the shoe.
Sheikh Nuh spoke about having taqwa
The Sheikh told us to ‘draw the line where the Prophet pbuh drew the line’ He was referring to all the ahadeeth in Bukhari about the impremissibility of musical instruments’ mentioning how we can find a fatwa for everything if we search long enough, we’ll eventually find a website that its halaal.
[this reminded me of my bukhari teacher, he said the same, if you want to follow your nafs, you can search and find a mufti who will make anything you want halaal’
Umm Sahl stressed on [as well as Sheikh Nuh] about having husn ul khuluq. we always expect others to change, WE need to change.
Umm Sahl is funny, serious and just the best!
Sheikh Nuh also spoke about photographs, and how we can see the hikma today of the prophet pbuh prohibiting images [1400 yrs ago]. images lead to sin. This was related to a question asked about having the disease of addiction to ponography.
Sheikh Nuh said ‘unplug now’ if you need to use the internet for other things, get others to do it. Nothing is impossible.
with this he also mentioned ppl who have an ‘adreline’ addiction [i think I spelt that wrong] mentioning this is also a big problem the media is putting in us all.
And yes sheikh Nuh spoke about learing arabic. He said, we should make a plan, if you plan to spent 20 mintues a week, you will know arabic after 20 years.
Overall I would say from the little I learned, Sheikh Nuh advised us all to practise taqwa in our lives, choosing the strong opinions, rather than the rukhsas. We should aim to live a life of taqwa with a good character. A good character is dawah to others.
Taqwa and husul khuluq – this should be our aim in shAllah.
A sadiq doesn’t attach his heart to anyone who doesn’t attach their heart to Allah.
Putting yourself down while putting others up will only put yourself up,
and putting yourself up whilst putting others down will only put yourself down.
Give others many excuses. Keep your word and have humility for the sake of Allah.
No one will be entrusted with the Secrets of the Divine who cannot be entrusted with the secrets of others.
Allah does not accept the love of those who don’t obey Him
That which you occupy yourself with is that which you love
Shaykh Nuh (hafidhahullah) on Dhikr:
Dhikr is the proclamation that someone has been made a wali..
Allah is their One Desire
He from whom dhikr has been taken away has been demoted.
No one draws nearer to Allah through their dhikr, except that Noor is bestowed from the dhikr.
“It draws upon a Sea without any shores, unbounded, without limit, not given to anyone except that they are a slave.”
on finding a marriage partner:
Always involve elders
Girls should learn how to look after their husbands
Men should learn how to provide
Taqwa is required in bringing up our children.
Children have to see their father around to know what a man is.
For a father to go out all the time, this is neglect.
Giving Dawah requires a HAAL. Dawah is fardh-e-kifayah.
Good manners are better than giving out books