Category Archives: Tassawuf

The cause of sinful disobedience

An electric current flowing through a circuit cannot be seen, but it causes a light to switch on which can be seen. The current of Allah’s love flows through our heart and minds. We may not see it in ourselves or others, but it leads to obedience to Allah, which is a light that can be seen. The sign of a break in an electric current is that the light will not switch on. An electrician needs to be called now, to identify and fix the fault.

The sign of a break in the current of love for Allah, it that a Saalik (a follower of Sufism) will be inclined to disobedience. A Shaikh needs to be called now, to identify and fix the fault. What has caused his love for sin to overpower his love for Allah? Is it Nafs, Shaytaan, or a change in circumstance? The Shaikh is skilled in this regard. He will ask him all the relevant questions, enquiring until the fault is found. Once identified it can be fixed immediately, allowing the current of love to flow smoothly again.

If there is no electric current, the freezer will defrost. If the electrician is quick, he will save the day. However, if it is left broken for too long, the food will rot and emit a foul smell. Now it will take much longer to sort the problem out. Though the fault was small, he left it for long and now it has disastrous consequences. Likewise, when we notice a spiritual weakness, we need to seek help as soon as possible. Otherwise, as time elapses it will worsen leading to disastrous consequences.

May the current of Allah’s love flow through our bodies causing us to live in His obedience and pleasure. Aameen.

— Hazrat Ml. Dawood Seedat حفظه الله

Above is an extract from Hazrat’s talk on 13/11/17 in Masjid-ut-Taqwa, Pietermaritzburg. To listen to the full talk, please click here.

Hazrat’s reflections on his Umrah trip

umrah trip

Hazrat went for Umrah and returned a few days ago. On 10/4/2017 in his dhikr majlis, Hazrat shared His reflections on the journey and lessons that we can all benefit from. Below is a written summary of that majlis. When the full audio is uploaded on, we will link it here inshaAllah

Hazrat Ml. Yunus Patel رحمة الله عليه would say that if you go to Niagara falls with a bucket, you can collect plenty of water within seconds. However, your bucket will never fill if you were to hold it upside down, even if you stood there for years. Haramain Shareefain has so much anwaraat, Islam spread from these places. The seeds of deen were planted in Makkah Mukarramah, watered with blood and sacrifice, but the flowers bloomed in Madinah Munawwarah.

The fragrance of these flowers were so strong, it reached the four corners of the world. Now, if Allah allows us to visit the source of the fragrance of Islam and it does not permeate and change our hearts, then we must really question, what is wrong with us? This fragrance is so strong it has changed the world, why then are we not impacted?

We intended having some programmes in Madina Munawarrah but when we arrived the hotel was full, and none of the people who I travelled with had an apartment to accommodate. In the midst of this dilemma, we left to visit the haram and I came across a brother there who was from South Africa too.

I did not recognise him but he approached me and reminded me how we met years ago. Then he told me that he had an apartment with big rooms and he would be happy for us to conduct our programmes there. He gave us exactly what we needed. SubhanAllah…do you see how if you make a small effort, Allah will open the doors for you? He will create the means for you, we just have to try and put our trust in Him.

We have it so easy compared to those that came before us. For example, yesterday we left Madina Munawwarah and after some delays, we reached home around 24 hours later. We felt tired but it made me wonder how kind Allah is. We left yesterday and we returned home today. In the prophetic era, they travelled for months on camels with little food. Our akaabireen would travel on donkey or by ship for many weeks before reaching their destination. Travel was not easy, you can read these stories in ‘Aap Beti’. They had to make such great sacrifices but for us, we have it easy. We must thank Allah for this.

Whilst we were there, in the programmes in Madinah Munawwarah one of the points we mentioned was about taking gifts home. Most parents that come here desire to take gifts back home for their children. We tend to buy scarves, toys, gadgets or other items for them. But the speciality of the holy lands is that it caused Imaan, deen and the Sunnah to spread across the world, therefore, these are the greatest gifts we can bring back for our children. We visited haramain shareefain to change, so bring this change home. Constantly ask yourself that am I improving in deen? Am I bringing new Sunnahs into my life?

Out of love many people focus on the structures and buildings there, but these big mimbars were not present during the prophetic era. The Sahaaba رضي الله عنهم did not see them yet their hearts were filled with love for deen because their focus was on Allah and His rasool, not the buildings and their structures. Nowadays people say they are ‘die-hard’ Manchester United fans, but as believers our concern must be: are we die-hard followers and lovers of Nabi ﷺ?

If we are, then everything in Madina Munawarrah will become beloved to us. Before leaving Madina Munawwarah Hazrat رحمة الله عليه would always say: O land of Madina Munawarrah! If only I could put you in my eyes. You are a Jannat of Nabi ﷺ. May Allah bless us and make us amongst those who love and follow Him.

In our hotel we met a brother from Paris. He was a young man who told us that his heart feels very heavy leaving such a beautiful place. Speaking to him made me think that in life, there are many types of sugars that one can consume but until you do not mix it with something, you cannot enjoy its sweetness. Likewise, the love of Nabi ﷺ has to be mixed in our lives and shown in our actions. Then, its sweetness will enter our hearts in the right proportion. But if we do not follow the Sunnah and just claim to be lovers, we will eventually fall into bidat.

Therefore, this love may be sweet but it will become detrimental for our spiritual health, just like a teaspoon of sugar may be sweet but it is detrimental for your physical health, because it is an overload of sweetness. Like this young man naturally, we will all leave with a heavy heart but we must remember to direct our love towards following the beloved.

Don’t just accumulate the sugar by listening to dhikr and poetry and desiring to enter into a state of ecstasy or kafiyyat. That is not the goal, the goal is to follow the practical lessons, to mix it in our lives and the result will be adhering more to the Sunnah.

Another great lesson we learnt there is that a believer must have himmat. He must muster the courage and will power to change and then Allah will grant him the ability to do so. Umrah can be challenging but like everything in life, the determined ones will find a way to overcome it, the rest will find an excuse to avoid it.

May Allah grant us the tawfiq to follow the Sunnah and to implement these lessons, Aameen.

— Hazrat Ml. Dawood Seedat حفظه الله

The effects of Sins and repentance


(Below is an article by Hazrat Ml. Yunus Patel رحمة الله عليه, taken from

When a person indulges in sins, in disobedience to Allah Ta’ala, then the heart immediately connects with the fire of Hell. As such, one result of sins is heat. The proof of this is drawn from a Masnoon Dua, which was brilliantly and inspirationally explained by Hazrat Maulana Shah Abdul Ghani Phulpoori رحمة الله عليه, a great Shaykh of his time. From the Ahaadeeth we learn different Duas for different occasions. One Dua that was taught to us by Nabi ﷺ is:

“O Allah, wash off my sins with the (melted) water of ice and snow, and purify my heart of sins, just as white clothes are cleansed of filth.”

Let us consider the explanation and meaning of this dua. Hazrat Maulana Shah Abdul Ghani Saheb رحمة الله عليه related that on one occasion he had a most respected guest present during his lesson of Bukhari Shareef. The guest was Hazrat Maulana Dr. Abdul Hayy Saheb رحمة الله عليه who was a senior Khalifa of Hazrat Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi رحمة الله عليه.

During this lesson, Dr. Abdul Hayy رحمة الله عليه posed a question to Hazrat Maulana Shah Abdul Ghani رحمة الله عليه. He asked: “Why did Nabi ﷺ use the words ‘ice and snow’ in this particular Dua?” Hazrat رحمة الله عليه being inspired with an answer from Allah Ta’ala, replied:

“There are two major effects that follow the commission of sins. Darkness in the heart

1)       Darkness in the heart

Rasulullah ﷺ explained: “When a Mu’min (believer) sins, a black dot appears on his heart. If he repents and seeks Allah’s forgiveness, his heart becomes cleansed and polished. If he continues to commit more and more sins (without repenting), the spot continues to spread and ultimately covers all of his heart.”

2)       Heat

By means of sins, a person links himself to the fire of Hell. As a result, such a person’s body also produces a kind of heat.

My Shaykh, Hazrat Maulana Hakeem Muhammad Akhtar Saheb رحمة الله عليه has mentioned, that generally, when a person is committing a lot of sin, especially if he is entangled in illicit love, then the effect of his sins is so intense and severe, that even his head becomes heated. Of course, this does not mean that every person whose head is heated is involved in sin. It may be that the person is ill or suffering with high temperature, e.t.c.

So consequently, the second quality of sin is that it produces heat. Hazrat Maulana Shah Abdul Ghani Saheb رحمة الله عليه then explained that the attribute of ice is its coolness and the apparent characteristic of snow is its whiteness.

Thus, the two effects of sins are removed with the two effects of snow and ice. The whiteness removes the darkness and the coolness effaces the heat. SubhanAllah!

Moreover, why is ‘white’ cloth used in the Dua? This is because a black cloth will not disclose the spots and marks of dirt, even after having been washed, but white cloth is sure to reveal the slightest trace of dirt. These are explanations that should be most appreciated by students of Deen as well as Saalikeen.

My Shaykh had also explained that if we are deficient in our Love of Allah Ta’ala, and our hearts have become dark and heated due to the commission of sins, then an easy route to giving up our sins, sincerely repenting, purifying our hearts and becoming the friends of Allah Ta’ala is to make friends with His Friends.

May Allah Ta’ala grant us the Taufeeq of Rujoo Ilallaah and His Friendship.

The humility and piety of Hazrat Ml. Yunus Patel (RA)



(The article below has been taken from the Council of Ulama website. It is not my personal encounter with Hazrat Ml. Yunus Patel (RA), the writer is unknown to us.)


As an indication of his extreme humility, Moulana used to tell me when I asked for his biography, that his life story could be fitted on the back of a postage stamp! Nothing could be further from the truth.

It was the great good fortune of Port Elizabeth that Moulana’s daughter and her family settled in Port Elizabeth. This brought Moulana, who had great love for his family, to our city many a times. Moulana used to not give the Ulama a chance to come and visit him first as he used to go and visit the junior and senior Ulama alike at their homes and places of work. The Ulama of Port Elizabeth benefited tremendously from Moulana’s advices especially with regards to setting up the Council of Ulama Eastern Cape.

Moulana generally did not like to have a program prepared in advance in Port Elizabeth. His talks, announced late, drew good crowds for the city. A unique feature was that the audience always consisted of a large percentage of Ulama.

Moulana loved the poor and once, on a visit to Port Elizabeth, I pointed out to him a poor student from one of the countries in Africa who sacrificed a lot to come and study Islam. Moulana called him aside in secret and gave him some money.

On one occasion, the maid of Moulana’s landlord needed to go to hospital to deliver her baby in the middle of the night. When the landlord refused, Moulana, together with his wife, took the maid to hospital and waited for her to be discharged before bringing her back home.

Moulana practically demonstrated the Islamic teachings of anti-racism and many a person from a different race group was won over by his impartial respect that he showed to one and all.


Anyone who saw him for even a little while would be impressed by Moulana’s adherence to the Sunnah and wonderful character. His granddaughter mentioned that in the months in which she lived with him, Moulana never once expressed anger towards his wife. Moulana recounted that all his maids who worked for him over the years accepted Islam, with three months being the most time required. Moulana lived a very simple, frugal life. He was accessible to people from all walks of life at all times.


The death of Moulana was an indication of his love for the holy cities of Makkah Mukarramah and Madinah Munawwarah. He performed Tawaaf, read Maghrib Salaah and experienced a heart attack in front of the Ka’bah in the Mataaf area. He breathed his last in the Haram. His Janaza Salaah was performed by Sheikh Shuraim at the Ka’bah. Moulana was buried in Jannatul Mualla, the blessed graveyard of Makkah Mukarramah, where Hazrat Khadijah رضي الله عنها is buried. This is extraordinary in itself as foreigners are not normally buried here.

Moulana was 65 when he passed away. He had two daughters and a son.

Moulana was not only a fountain of knowledge, wisdom and piety, he was also a pillar of strength for all, Ulama especially. I personally know many Ulama who relied on Moulana’s advices and support to continue their service of Islam. In fact, while the Muslims of South Africa in general feel at a loss on the demise of Hazrat Moulana Yunus Patel رحمة الله عليه, it is the Ulama who feel totally orphaned. Moulana had a knack of encouraging Ulama and directing them to better service of Islam. He was the confidante of the innermost feelings of many an Aalim.

The adoration of his followers is a reminder of how the Sahaaba رضي الله عنهم adored the Prophet صلي الله عليه وسلم. The sadness and shock at the news of his passing makes one think of how the demise of the Prophet صلي الله عليه وسلم affected those who loved him, the Sahaaba رضي الله عنهم.

He guided even the biggest sinner with a marvelous hand of wisdom.

The Prophet صلي الله عليه وسلم said: ‘Allah does not take away the knowledge by taking it away from (the hearts of the) people, but takes it away by the death of the religious learned men till when none of the (religious learned men) remains, people will take as their leaders ignorant persons who when consulted will give their verdict without knowledge. So they will go astray and will lead the people astray.’

(Bukhari 1:32)

‘This saint with Madinah Muawwarah’s love at heart,
His praises we cannot fulfill; merely start.
His character a reflection of He صلي الله عليه وسلم who lies,
Under the green dome, beneath Arabia’s skies.’

(From: An Ode to Hazrat Moulana Yunus Patel رحمة الله عليه)


The alchemy of Tassawuf: Turning thorns into roses


A believer with bad character is like a thorn troubling people whilst a believer with good character is like a rose; he gives fragrance to all those around him. If you look at him from far, he reminds you of Islam. When you speak to him, he speaks of deen and when you sit in his company, you benefit from his piety.

The alchemy of scientists is to turn dust into gold, the alchemy of mashaaikh is to turn thorns into roses. In nurseries we plant seeds and roses grow but this is no kamaal. It is the system of Allah.

In a khanqah thorns come (meaning people with bad character, in need of islaah/spiritual reformation). If you plant a thorn in the ground nothing grows. But a thorn that stays in a khanqah with sincerity grows into a rose. When he leaves people will enquire that which maulana is this? But he is not a maulana. He is just a thorn that became a rose.

The same children of his who went into hiding the minute he would enter the home, fearing his wrath, now rush to the door to embrace him. The same wife of his who feared his return, now, she looks forward to seeing him because now he is a rose, everyone likes roses. Who would want a thorn? Nobody. But roses? Everyone likes roses.

— Hazrat Ml. Dawood Seedat حفظه الله

(Above is an extract from a dhikr majlis delivered by Hazrat on 23/1/2017. To listen to the full audio, please click here.)

The demise of Hazrat Ml. Abdul Hafeez Makki (RA)


One day we were travelling and at Cape Town airport we saw Hazrat Maulana Abdul Hafeez Makki  رحمة الله عليه. He was surrounded by young people who were embracing him as He departed. This was the character of Hazrat, even young people loved him and learnt from him despite his old age. Hazrat made a lot of deeni effort in different countries. Even in Makkah and Madina where tassawuf is not common, Hazrat had a khanqah established there. He spent his life like this, so Allah took him away while he was doing what he loved doing (i.e. dawah).

He had a programme scheduled for today and tomorrow here in Pietermaritzburg. Before he left home, he already had chest pains but he still undertook the journey. Once he reached Pietermaritzburg, he had a heart attack and was rushed to the hospital. The last message we received was that he was stable, but after ‘Asr I went home and received the message that he passed away.

And that is it. At the end of the day it all boils down to that. How we live is how we will depart. The car we drove, the food we ate, our worldly accomplishments e.t.c will not matter once we breathe our last. A maulana who had a very close relationship with Hazrat invited me to have supper with them all this evening. Maulana was telling me that Hazrat will be having supper with us so please come. We planned here whilst Allah had already planned there.

Such is life, we plan but the reality is our lives are subjected to the ultimate plan of Allah. People will pass away and lamenting is natural, but our main goal should be to benefit as much as we can whilst our ulama are alive. After their death you can benefit by reading books, but we cannot derive islaahi benefit. This is the system of Allah whether we understand it or not.

There are some people, rijalullah, Allah has blessed them with a connection to Allah. If we want to connect with Allah we have to connect with them. Those who do this can benefit tremendously but those who do not bother about their islaahi talluq with their Shaikh, failing to correspond on serious matter like missing faraaidh, they will not benefit much from islaahi talluq. We must benefit from our mashaaikh whilst they are alive. Then choose one Shaikh for islaah/spiritual reformation and take your Islaah seriously.

Hazrat Maulana Yunus Patel  رحمة الله عليه once mentioned an incident of a Shaikh who had passed away but had no khulafa. The mureeds became concerned, they did not know who to turn to now for Islaah. The Shaikh had a son so the mureeds, who were villagers, took bayat to him. The son did not know much about tassawuf as he did not take an interest in his father’s work, so he informed them of this. However the mureeds were adamant and requested bayat. They asked him what dhikr to make but the poor son had no idea so instead, he instructed them to get a spade, go to a field and dig the soil.

They took his instruction seriously and with sincerity, they carried it out. He began worrying and with sincerity, he turned to Allah and said that ya Allah! Do something, help us! Allah saw the sincerity of the mureeds and the sincere concern of the son, so Allah blessed each one of them in the khanqah with wilayat. They were just tilling the soil in the field yet Allah blessed them. We must question ourselves, in our talluq with our Shaikh, how much sincerity and talab (i.e. desire) do we have?

Make ittilaa’ (i.e. explain you spiritual weaknesses to your Shaikh for reformation) and itiaaat (i.e. follow your Shaikh’s advice after making ittilaa’) and Allah will give you spiritual benefit in your islaahi talluq. Otherwise if we maintain a mediocre attitude towards our islaah we will only get mediocre benefit.

May Allah enable us to benefit from our ulama whilst they are alive, and He grant us tawfiq to take our spiritual reformation seriously, Aameen.

— Hazrat Maulana Dawood Seedat حفظه الله

(Above is an extract from Hazrat’s dhikr Majlis on 16/1/2017. To listen to the full audio, please click here.)

Immediate wilayat (friendship with Allah)


(By Hazrat Maulana Yunus Patel رحمة الله عليه)

[Surah Baqarah 2:222]

A young person, after listening to a talk, experienced a revolution in his heart. He asked me: “With my past, with the sins in my life, how is it possible for me to become a Wali?”

I said: “It is extremely simple. It takes just one minute to become a Wali (friend of Allah ﷻ ). Raise your hands and with deep regret and remorse in your heart, shed a few tears and pray to Allah, say: ‘O Allah ﷻ , I have wasted my life but I want to become Your Wali, I want to become Your friend. So forgive all the sins which I have committed since maturity, and grant me the ability to do that which pleases You in my future life.’

You have immediately become a wali. Now make an effort towards fulfilling those rights which had been violated. The effort made indicates to the sincerity of your tawbah/repentance.”

If salaah and fasts were missed then qaza (the religious duty performed after the expiry of its time) must be made. If Zakaah, Qurbaani and Sadaqatul Fitr were not fulfilled then such monies must be paid. The same applies to monies owed to people. Pay back to whomsoever, what is due or ask them to forgive you. If not, then that tawbah you made will not be complete. And if harm and injury was caused to another, then his forgiveness should be sought.

If there are a number of outstanding salaah or fasts due, then it is obvious that a person cannot read all the qazas in one day, or keep all his missed fasts in one day. This will take due time. However the intention of the person to fulfil all dues of Allah and His creation, and the effort made in that direction makes the person a friend and beloved of Allah ﷻ .

If the person does not make any effort in that direction after tawbah, then this is a clear sign that he was not sincere in his tawbah. Also in respect to his future life, every effort should be made not to return to sins.

(The above is an edited article, taken from here.)

Lessons from the life of Ml. Yunus Patel (RA): Dawah at the airport


If we leave the door of sins open in our lives, the fruits of our deeni efforts will make an exit. Therefore, although we acquire the noor of taqwa via dhikr and duas, its heat cannot bake the love of Allah ﷻ in our hearts, because we have left the oven door open. We must close this door of sin. Nowadays, almost every person who requests bayat asks, “what adhkar must I make?” The first, most important step is to give up sins. Major sins are not only music and TV, there are many others that we need to avoid.

If we do not, then through our amal we may have a garden of dhikr, but we will ruin it by growing the weeds of sin. Overtime this garden that was once beautiful becomes a jungle, its beauty hidden under sin. Due to this, the kuffar cannot see the beauty of islam. Those who live as pious muslims, they do not have to say much. Their character is dawah in of itself.

Once Hazrat Maulana Yunus Patel رحمة الله عليه was at the airport, going from international to local flight. Hazrat had a box of books that were given to Him. When He reached the counter with this box, the employee behind the desk said that the box is too heavy, it cannot go through.
So Hazrat said that no problem, I will take the box out. The employee changed his tune and began bribing Hazrat, offering to allow the box through for a sum of 100 rands. He refused this offer but the employee was adamant. He further bribed Hazrat saying that look! No-one is watching, just give the 100 rands and no-one will know!

Hazrat’s reply was so simple, yet so reflective of His profound taqwa. He replied that yes your supervisor is not looking. But my supervisor is Allah and He is looking at me! He will not allow it! I would rather take the box out. This response had a deep impact on the employee. Hazrat continued on His journey. He walked off, went to one side and requested water. The Johannesburg brothers that were travelling with Him bought water and Hazrat sat down and drank.

The employee continued serving other passengers but as He did so, He kept a close eye on Hazrat. He watched as Hazrat went, sat and drank. Eventually he asked someone that who is this man?! They replied that He is our Hazrat, our maulana, our teacher. The employee expressed his desire to meet Hazrat. This message was passed onto Hazrat, who was still sitting on the side drinking water. He sent a note back saying that look, you are on duty and you cannot make khiyanat (i.e. deceive them). You still have passengers to serve. So I will wait for you. When all the passengers have checked in, then come to me…I will speak to you.

So once all the passengers were checked in, this employee made his way to Hazrat. But this time round his request to Hazrat was very different. He did not want the wealth of dunya, as he did previously. This time, he wanted the wealth of the heart that Hazrat had.
He simply asked Hazrat that what religion do you follow? I want to follow it too.

We can learn so much from this incident. Hazrat did not give dawah to him, this employee came to islam by just observing Hazrat. Actions speak louder than words and this case certainly exemplifies that. So Hazrat made him read the kalima and He gave contact numbers of the Johannesburg brothers that were with him. Thereafter, He gave him 200 rands saying that this is a gift from me to you. You see, you wanted to make 100 rands in a haram way, but now Allah ﷻ has given you 200 rands in a permissible, clean way. This is what bayat is all about, to rectify our hearts and improve our manners. Once we do that even our actions will become dawah.

May Allah make grant us the tawfiq, Aameen.

— Hazrat Maulana Dawood Seedat حفظه الله

(The above is an extract from Hazrat’s dhikr majlis on 19/09/2016. To listen to the full audio, please click here.)

Attribute success to Allah ﷻ



Monday 10th October/8th of  Muharram 1438

Below are brief points that have been slightly edited, from the ladies class taught by Hazrat Moulana Dawood Seedat حفظه الله.

When one has extreme love for Allah ﷻ, then he will attribute every successful moment in his life to the grace, kindness and mercy of Allah ﷻ.

When engaged in worship or when attending a deeni programme, he should think that he hasn’t come by his own means, rather, he has been allowed by Allah ﷻ. It is the grace of Allah ﷻ, not his own doing. Such thoughts will save him from the evils of pride.

We can derive lessons about absorption from our children who sit with their cellphones. Very seldom do they immediately respond to our calling them, as what they love has totally absorbed them. This is the relationship we ought to have with Allah ﷻ.

Hazrat Maulana Yunus Patel رحمة الله عليه had extreme love for Allah ﷻ and Nabi-e-Kareem صلي الله عليه وسلم. Such was the intensity of His love, when anybody intended to go to Madeenah Shareef, they would first visit Hazrat رحمة الله عليه to absorb his love and spiritual connection to that Mubarak place. Hazrat رحمة الله عليه would say, “How do you explain sweetness to a person who has never tasted sugar? The only way would be to add sugar to his tea and let him taste for himself!”

Love is a very strong quality, but we are immersed in love for everything besides Allah ﷻ and Nabi صلي الله عليه وسلم. The lifestyle of the kuffaar has become beloved to us, thus, many find their path easy to follow. When we inculcate Allah ﷻs love, then the commands of deen shall become very easy for us to follow.

And how do we do this? Take Allah ﷻ’s name and beg Allah ﷻ for His love and the love of Nabi  صلي الله عليه وسلم.


The soft hearts of the Yemenis


Nabi صلي الله عليه وسلم described the people of Yemen as soft-hearted. But in order to maintain a balance, a person needs to know when to adopt a firm approach and when to adopt a lenient approach. Understanding this is a skill but how will we learn this art? By making mashwara with the Shaikh first before making any change in life (i.e seek his advice). Many instances, people do not do this and land themselves in trouble.

A person sent an email saying that I cannot afford to go for Umrah, but an agent is prepared to sell us a package, on the condition that we pay monthly once we return. Now this person took the right step by making mashwara first, asking if he should take the offer. He was informed that he must not because umrah is nafl, why get yourself in debt to go? Make dua to Allah ﷻ, read Ishraq salah everyday and you will get the reward of Umrah inshaAllah. Do what you can afford and do not get involved in debt.

Other times, we are given mashwara but we operate and dissect it to suit our needs. One friend asked me, “Maulana there’s a warehouse available, shall we take it?” I replied, “Do you need it?” He said, “No.” So I said, “don’t.” Then he says ”No, but I’ll need it one day!” If we are not willing to take the advice given, why ask?

Sometimes we turn to deen yet when it comes to certain aspects in our life, we are still nafsparast (slaves of our own desires). What is bayah? When a person takes bayah, he is handing his heart over to the Shaikh. Now he’s plasticine in the Shaikh’s hands, the Shaikh will mould him and shape him. Does plasticine protest against a child who shapes it? No – because it’s soft and willing to change! Likewise we need to become soft and willing to change, otherwise, how will we make our islah?

It’s easy to remove a strand of hair from plasticine, yet that same strand of hair is so difficult to pull out of cement that has hardened. In the same way if one’s heart is soft, it will be easy to remove the evil traits. But when the heart is hard, then it is extremely difficult to remove the evil traits. A hard heart is hard to work with.

So allow yourself to be moulded by the Shaikh. This is islah. Coming to the lectures alone is not islah, true islah means to rectify our hearts, ridding it of its evil qualities. Look at life differently. Look at each person as a servant of Allah ﷻ, as an ummati of Nabi صلي الله عليه وسلم. Is Allah ﷻ not watching me? This is an ummati, will Nabi صلي الله عليه وسلم – the one who would even embrace his enemy – be happy with the way I treat His ummati?

Coming back to the topic of being firm and lenient, sometimes we don’t know when to be lenient and when to be firm. Our kids read Quran from Monday to Friday yet when they slack a little the dad says that what should I do with these kids?! I’d say, adopt a lenient approach and calm down. Other times, when the son wants to go for a braai/barbecue late at night then adopt a firm approach.

Our Hazrat Maulana Yunus Patel رحمة الله عليه once gave an example of a person who decided not to attend wedding functions that were conducted in halls, but his family wanted to go. So Hazrat رحمة الله عليه did not tell him to go home and shout at his family, asking them; “Why are you acting like shayaateen? You go to the function but I’m not taking you by car, you can walk there!” Rather, Hazrat رحمة الله عليه advised him to drop the family off to the wedding and then pick them up when they’re done.

This is wisdom. Why? Because his family went once or twice but this time, his wife noticed the fitna even more than usual. She started to feel guilty so she stopped going and her kids followed suit. If he was to adopt a harsh stance then yes, maybe the family wouldn’t have gone, but they’d do so begrudgingly. By adopting a lenient stance and following the advice of his Shaikh, the entire family happily gave up going to these types of functions. The problem was solved with no fuss or fight.

Once, there was a person who would watch T.V. He made talluq with a Shaikh and learnt T.V was haram. He tells his wife and she says, “no problem, I’ll stop watching but I can’t give up Dallas”. Now he doesn’t know what to do. On one hand he thinks this T.V is haram, it must go out, but then on the other hand he realises if I act harsh then why did I take bayat? So after discussing with his Shaikh, he was advised to encourage his wife to totally give up T.V but not to force her, as she was not ready just yet for this change. However, the Shaikh also told him that he must not watch and he must not sit with her while she is watching. Alhamdulillah by following the Shaikh’s advice, in a short while she gave up T.V totally and willingly.

So in the above case he had conflicting, confusing views. The solution is…I must tell my Shaikh and follow his advice. However if I’m going to follow what’s in my mind then you’re not bayat to your Shaikh, you’re bayat to your mind. What hurts the Shaikh is when the mureed does not follow his teachings, not when people talk bad about him.

Defending a Shaikh when people talk bad about him yet not following his advice is not muhabbat. This is nafsaaniyat. The Sahaaba رضي الله عنهم wanted to retaliate to those who would speak rudely to Nabi صلي الله عليه وسلم but Nabi صلي الله عليه وسلم responded by saying that no, don’t retaliate. So the Sahaaba رضي الله عنهم wouldn’t. Many times Umar  رضي الله عنه wanted to take out his sword but he would ask Nabi صلي الله عليه وسلم first. When Nabi صلي الله عليه وسلم would say no, he’d put that sword straight back into its sheath, because His mindset was…I’m not here to do what I want to do, I’m here to do what Nabi صلي الله عليه وسلم told me to do. That’s what’s right.

This is what a Shaikh is for – to guide us back to the Sunnah.

So Nabi صلي الله عليه وسلم said the ashariyeen were soft-hearted people. Nabi صلي الله عليه وسلم further explained; due to this reason, imaan is Yemeni and wisdom is Yemeni. Meaning the hearts of these people due to its softness, will be warehouses of imaan and marifah. Fountains of ilm will flow out from this type of heart because when noor is on the inside, that will shine on the outside too. There are so many Sahaaba رضي الله عنهم here, yet Nabi صلي الله عليه وسلم is saying the Yemeni heart is an embodiment of imaan.

So islaah will sort out the root problems in our lives. But for this to happen, we must become soft-hearted like the Yemenis, take the knocks in life and allow ourselves to be totally moulded and shaped in the hands of our Shaikh. Then we will see the real change happen.

May Allah soften our hearts, Aameen.

– Hazrat Maulana Dawood Seedat حفظه الله

(The above is an edited extract from a lecture delivered by Hazrat Maulana. To listen to the full audio, please click here.)