Our beloved master Ahmed al Tijani said: Allah almighty surrounded man when He created him with weakness and incapability in movements, tranquility and in all the rest of his states for when man is seated for a long time he will tire from being seated and when he is standing he will tire from long time standing and if he was to sleep for a long time will be fed up from sleeping and if he was to stay awake will then have to sleep and if he was leaning for a long time he will be exhausted from leaning and when he eats he is burdened by being full with food and if he were to quit eating he would go hungry and so on you may compare the rest of his states to this, this is so – so that man is always in a state of need to his lord and so that he knows and confesses that the lord is powerful and is absolutely independent, this way man will not rely on anyone or anything just like one dusting off his hand and turn to his lord alone, this is the lord’s way so that man may know him and turn to him, Praise to Allah the all wise and all knowing the one whose knowledge has encircled every thing and the one whose decree and desire is above all and everything. The sheikh may Allah be pleased with him would point out to people how to know one’s lord by learning from these states that man continuously experiences hardship and comfort, happy life to trouble and unrest, fear and safety, sickness and health, the hearts changing states such as constriction to openness, determination to despair, the sheikh would recite: ((We shall show them Our portents on the horizons and within themselves until it will be manifest unto them that it is the Truth)) and then the sheikh would say: If people knew better they would have appreciated that to be in hardship is better than being in comfort because it is the nature of man when in beneficence and grace to forget the lord, turn aside and withdraw but when distress and trouble hits, it forces man to turn back towards his lord seeking help and safety, when man is in need and in fear there is no room or time to be forgetful and negligent as he was when in good health and happiness – therefore People/Man in that situation is better because at that stage he/she is at the door of their lord begging his help to relief them of hardship, the sheikh would then mention Allah Almighty’s saying: ((When We show favour unto man, he withdraweth and turneth aside, but when ill toucheth him then he aboundeth in prayer)) and he would teach people Yaqeen (certainty) and show them the way to know and reach the almighty he would say: Will not Allah suffice His slave? Is not Allah the most merciful? Was he not kind to us through out our lives? So how can we doubt him? If you were to swear by the greatest most great name of Allah to not give you what has been destined for you to have he will still give it to you and if you were to ask for that which he has not destined for you to have, you shall never attain it [The pen has dried up you will face what has been written for you] (1) He would say: Allah almighty puts his servant through a poverty test then he makes it a bit easy on him with something which is not purely halal, if one is a little bit patient the almighty opens for that servant a kind of opening after which he will never again experience any poverty. Jawahiru al Ma’ani Part One Page 95/96 (1) – Rufi’at al aqlamu wa jafati al Suhufu – ‘Pens have dried up and papers has been lifted’ a proverb used by Arabs and used by the prophet peace and blessings upon him in many traditions – This proverb is used when the speaker wishes to inform the listener that the matter has been decreed and ordained.
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