26 - The book was compelled to note the true teachings of the Ahl as-Sunnat on its 485th and following pages, but also wrong, poisonous, aggressive statements were inserted:
"Rasulullah [sall-Allahu ta'ala 'alaihi wa sallam] ordered his umma to remember the hereafter, to do the dead favors by praying for them, to pity them and to ask for their forgiveness when visiting graves. Thus, the visitor will be doing good both for the dead and for himself. The hadith narrated by Muslim on the authority of Abu Huraira (radi-Allahu ta'ala 'anh) declares, 'Visit graves! Visiting graves will remind you of death.' 'Abdullah ibn 'Abbas said that Rasulullah [sall-Allahu ta'ala 'alaihi wa sallam] said, 'As-salamu 'alaikum ya ahl al-qubur! Yaghfir-Allahu lana wa lakum, antum salafuna wa nahnu bi 'l-athar,' while looking at the graves when he was passing by the cemetery in Medina. Imam Ahmad and at-Tirmidhi related this hadith ash-Sharif. A hadith ash-Sharif related by Ibn al-Qayyim al-Jawziyya from Imam Ahmad declares, 'I forbade you to visit graves before. Now you may visit graves! You will thus remember the hereafter.' A hadith ash-Sharif related by Ibn Maja from 'Abdullah ibn Masud, declares, 'I forbade you to visit graves before. Now you may visit! Thus, you will be redeemed from giving your hearts to the world and remember the hereafter.' The hadith ash-Sharif narrated by Imam Ahmad from Abu Said declares, 'I forbade you to visit graves. From now on you may visit. Thus, you will take a warning and wake up from ghafla.' Ibn al-Qayyim al-Jawziyya reports Salamat ibn Wardan as saying, 'I saw Anas ibn Malik greet Rasulullah. Then he leaned against the wall of a grave and prayed.' Polytheists changed [the true form of] visiting graves. They turned the religion upside down. They go to graves and make the dead partners with Allah. They pray to the dead. They pray to Allah through the dead. They ask the dead for their needs, expect blessings and ask them to help them against their enemies. Thus, they are harmful both to themselves and to the dead. Rasulullah [sall-Allahu ta'ala 'alaihi wa sallam] had forbidden men to visit graves in order to abolish such bad customs. After monotheism settled in their hearts, he permitted the visiting of graves. But, to say hujr [nonsensical, bad words] by graves was forbidden. The greatest hujr is to commit polytheism with words or action at graves. People now ornament tombs but do not care for mosques. They reverse the religion which is revealed by Allah through prophets. Because the Shiites are the most ignorant and far away from the religion, they build tombs and demolish mosques."
We agree with the Wahhabis about the ignoramuses and heretics who, at graves, behave impetuously, commit polytheism and disregard Allahu ta'ala's creating. We are certainly hostile to polytheism and polytheists. 'Al-Imam ar-Rabbani (rahmat-Allahi ta'ala 'alaih) explains this finely and clearly in his various letters. [Especially in the 41st letter in Maktubat, 111 (Endless Bliss III, 1981, p. 149.] However, although the Wahhabis note that they believe that it is permissible to visit graves and that reciting the Qur'an al-karim to send its thawab for the souls of the dead and praying for the dead will do good for the dead, they say that the dead do not feel or hear and that talking to the dead, asking the Prophet for shafa'a and praying to Allahu ta'ala through awliya' are polytheistic acts. Their statements disagree with each other. As it can be concluded from the beginning of our book to here, the difference between the Wahhabis and Ahl as-Sunnat stems from this point. Therefore, to protect Muslim brothers, we deemed it proper to discuss this point.
Great scholar of Islam and perfect wali Sayyid 'Abdulhakim Arwasi (rahmat-Allahi ta'ala 'alaih), who was a professor of tasawwuf at the Madrasatu 'l-mutahassisin, the most advanced educational institution of the Ottomans, equivalent to present-day universities in Istanbul, wrote:
"It is called rabita to attach one's heart to and to keep in one's imagination the image of the face of a wali, in his presence or absence, who has been qualified with the Qualities of Allahu ta'ala and attained to the stage of mushahada. Thinking of those who have attained perfection is very useful, as expressed in the hadiths, 'Allahu ta'ala is remembered when they are seen,' and 'Those who are with them do not become rebels [against Allahu ta'ala]', which are related by al-Bukhari and Muslim. A faithful, pure Muslim attains the qualities and hals of such a man of Allah by thinking of him. The hadiths order Muslims to stay with pious Muslims, that is, Allahu ta'ala's beloved servants. [A hadith ash-Sharif noted by ad-Dailami and at-Tabarani and in Kunuz ad-daqaiq declares, 'I am the city of knowledge. 'Ali is its gate.' As indicated in this hadith ash-Sharif, faid, marifa and nur flow from the hearts of the men of Allah, who are like the gate of Allahu ta'ala's endless ocean of faid, to the hearts of Muslims who love and remember them. To attain this faid, first it is necessary to possess the belief of the Ahl as-Sunnat, to live up to Rasulullah thoroughly, to love the men of Allah and to keep love for them in the heart. Those who lack these prerequisites remain deprived of the faid and marifa of the men of Allah. They can find no other way out than to deny the facts they do not know. The second condition necessary to receive faid is that the man of Allah should be a perfect inheritor of Rasulullah, should be following in his footsteps and should be a beloved servant of Allahu ta'ala. Since there is no such man of Allah among the Wahhabis, the doors to faid and marifa are closed from them. It is for this reason that polytheists, who worship idols and statues, and those wretched Muslims who follow ignorant people and false rehbers cannot gain any faid or benefit. The reason why Abu Jahl, Abu Talib and Abu Lahab and the like could not obtain any faid or guidance from Rasulullah (sall-Allahu 'alaihi wa sallam) was because they themselves did not fulfill the first condition. Prophets ('alaihimu 's-salam) are the Khalifas of Allahu ta'ala on the earth. And awliya', because they are the inheritors of prophets, have taken a share of this honor, and their blessed hearts have become a mirror of Allahu ta'ala. The 26th ayat al-karima of Surat as-Sad and the 165th ayat al-karima of Surat al-Anam and many other ayats document our words. A Muslim who attaches himself to the heart of a perfect (kamil) wali will attain Allahu ta'ala's faid through the blessed heart of that wali. The hadith ash-Sharif quoted in ad-Dailami's book and in Kunuz ad-daqaiq declares, 'A scholar among his people is like a prophet among his umma.' It does not make any difference for the heart's attaining faid and marifa whether the man of Allah is alive or dead. His perfections (kamalat) never depart from his soul. And the soul is not bound by time, place, death or life. If the above-mentioned two conditions are fulfilled, any Muslim who attaches himself to, that is, who loves and remembers, a man of Allah -wherever he is, alive or dead- immediately attains faid and marifa. It is necessary to believe that the tasarruf (disposal, possession) of their souls is by Allahu ta'ala's tasarruf on them. Until a man can receive faid from Allahu ta'ala without a mediator (wasita), he needs a mediator whom Allahu ta'ala loves and who can receive and transmit faid to his disciples.]
"That the 'ulama' of Bukhara, Khiwa, Samarqand and India (rahmat-Allahi ta'ala 'alaihim ajmain) have unanimously declared and performed and ordered their students to perform rabita since 200 up to 1200 A.H. is the greatest support and document of our above statements. An attempt to search for another document besides this would mean humiliating, even slandering, millions of Islamic 'ulama' who have come up in the huge continent of Asia for more than one thousand years. Their books which exist now show that they were 'ulama' and that most of them were perfect walis.
"The 32nd ayat al-karima of Surat al-Ma'ida declares, 'look for wasila to attain Him.' The wasila, or wasita, in this imperative ayat karima is not bound by any condition but is used in a general sense. 'Ibadat, dhikr, du'a' (prayers) and the ruhs of awliya' are included in this command. An attempt to put limits to this general order is nothing but a calumny against the ayat al-karima. That the wasila is Rasulullah (sall-Allahu 'alaihi wa sallam) is made known in the Divine Command in the 31st ayat al-karima of Surat Al 'Imran: 'If you love Allahu ta'ala, adapt yourselves to me! Allahu ta'ala loves those who adapt themselves to me.' Everyone who says that he is a Muslim should believe this ayat. The hadith ash-Sharif, ''Ulama' are the inheritors of prophets,' shows that awliya' (qaddas-Allahu ta'ala sirrahum) are wasilas, too. It is impossible to obey the Qur'anic command 'adapt yourselves' without loving.
"Al-Bukhari wrote [in his Sahih] that Abu Bakr as-Siddiq (radi-Allahu 'anh) said that Rasulullah was never away from his heart and mind so much so that he complained that Rasulullah's image was in his memory even when he was in the toilet.
"Allahu ta'ala declared, 'Oh believers! Fear Allah! Be with the faithful!' in the 120th ayat al-karima of Surat at-Tawba. Here also, 'be with' is not bound by any condition. It is a general statement. Therefore, it includes 'being with' the faithful in the material sense as well as spiritual. To be with the faithful bodily, materially, means to stay modestly, respectfully and affectionately in their presence. And to 'be with' spirit vis-a-vis spirit means to remember a beloved faithful servant of Allahu ta'ala respectfully.
"The 'burhan' (proof) mentioned in the 20th ayat al-karima of Surat Yusuf (If Yusuf ['alaihi 's-salam] had not seen his Allah's burhan...) is, almost by unanimity, the visual appearance of Yaqub ('alaihi 's-salam) to him. Az-Zamakhshari, the author of the tafsir Kashshaf, though he was one of the heretics of the Mutazila, joined the majority of the 'ulama' of tafsir and said that Prophet Yaqub who was in Jordan became visible to the Prophet Yusuf who was in a room with Zalikha in Egypt.
"Sayyid Ahmad al-Hamawi [al-Misri, passed away in 1908 A.H. (1686)], a Hanafi alim and the annotator of the book Ashbah, noted in his book Nafakhat al-qurb wal-ittisal bi-ithbati 't-tasarrufi li awliya'i'llahi ta'ala wal-karamati ba'd al-intiqal that the ruhaniyya (spirituality) of awliya' was more powerful than their jismaniyya (physical existence), and they therefore could be seen in different places at the same moment. He quoted the following hadith ash-Sharif as a document for his words: 'There are people who will enter Paradise through every gate. Each gate will call them to itself,' upon which Abu Bakr as-Siddiq (radi-Allahu 'anh) asked, 'Will there be anyone to enter through all of the eight gates, oh Rasulullah?' and Rasulullah (sall-Allahu Alaihi wa sallam) answered, 'I hope you will be one of them.' One can appear in different places at the same moment when his soul acquires the power of having connection with his original position in 'alam al-amr. Since the soul's interest in the world decreases when a man dies, his soul becomes more powerful. It becomes easier for him to appear in different places at the same moment.
"It is written in the commentary on Shama'il by Ibn Hajar al-Makki and in Tanwir al-halak by Jalal ad-din as-Suyuti that 'Abdullah ibn 'Abbas said, 'I dreamt of Rasulullah. He treated me with favor. I visited one of his wives after I woke up. I looked at the mirror. I saw not me but Rasulullah in the mirror.' This state (hal) is not one of the things peculiar (makhsus) only to Rasulullah. For this reason, the 'ulama' of Islam collected Rasulullah's (sall-Allahu ta'ala 'alaihi wa sallam) khasa'is (peculiarities, special virtues) in books and did not record this state as one of the khasa'is. According to the basic rules of fiqh and usul al-fiqh, the 'ulama' and awliya' of Rasulullah's umma are the inheritors of his every hal, which is not among his khasa'is. For example, talking with Rasulullah when performing salat does not break one's ritual salat. But this is a khassa (peculiarity) of Rasulullah belonging to him exclusively, and talking with 'ulama' or awliya' therefore breaks salat. It is not one of his khasa'is to call down blessings upon (salat) and to greet (salam) Rasulullah (sall-Allahu 'alaihi wa sallam) as if he is in sight -by visualizing him. Therefore, it is permissible to imagine, to form in the mind a picture of, a wali and expect help from this soul. Jalal ad-din as-Suyuti, a Shafi'i scholar, says, 'The twenty-second kind of karamat is that awliya' can appear in forms of different persons,' in his book At-tabaqat al-Kubra. The 26th ayat al-karima of Surat al-Mariam declares, 'He (Archangel Gabriel) became visible to her (Hadrat Mariam) in [the form of] a human being.' 'Ulama' have interpreted this ayat karima as that the souls of awliya' may appear in various forms. The well-known event of Qadib al-Ban Hasan al-Musuli (d. Musul, 570 A.H.) is one of this kind of karamat. [For details of this and other karamat of his, see Yusuf an-Nabhani's Jami al-karamat al-awliya. Allama al-Jaili, a Shafi'i scholar, wrote in his commentary to the Sahih of al-Bukhari: "The Devil cannot appear in the shapes of perfect walis, who are Rasulullah's (sall-Allahu alaihi wa sallam) inheritors, just as it cannot take Rasulullah's shape."]
" 'Allama Sayyid Sharif al-Jurjani (rahmat-Allahi 'alaih), a Hanafi scholar, noted before writing about the 72 Muslim groups at the end of his book Sharh al-Mawaqif and in his annotation to the book Sharh al-Matali' that living or dead awliya' (rahimahum-Allahu ta'ala) become visible to their students in various forms and that their disciples receive faid and get much benefit from those images.
"Taj ad-din Ahmad ibn 'Ata'-Allah al-Iskandari ash-Shadhili (rahmat-Allahi 'alaih), a Maliki scholar who passed away in Egypt in 709 A.H. (1309), wrote in his work Tajiyya that one can get much benefit from a perfect wali when he sees or thinks of him.
" 'Allama Shams ad-din ibn an-Nuaym (rahmat-Allahi 'alaih), a Hanafi scholar, wrote in Kitab ar-ruh, 'Souls may be in a different state other than when they are in their bodies. The souls of awliya' are at Rafiq al-ala and also have a relation with their dead bodies. If a person visits such a wali's grave and greets him, his soul at Rafiq al-ala anwers that person.' This is also noted in al-Imam as-Suyuti's Kitab al-Munjali. All these proofs show that awliya' have powerful tasarruf (disposal) and influence after their death in a way which we may not know.
"Khalil ibn Ishaq al-Jandee (rahmat-Allahi 'alaih), a Maliki scholar and author of the book Mukhtasar, who passed away in 767 A.H. (1365), wrote, 'The ability to appear in various forms is given by Allahu ta'ala to a wali when he becomes perfect. This is not impossible, because the images that are seen in different shapes are non-material; the body is not seen. Souls are not material and do not occupy a place in space.'
"Disbelieving the teachings and documents which are clearly reported by so many profound 'ulama' and awliya' is nothing but disagreeing with the religion and reason. May Allahu ta'ala bestow reason and justice upon those who classify the Muslims of Ahl as-Sunnat as non-believes or polytheists on account of this belief of theirs! Shame on those who liken the Muslims who believe this fact to the polytheists who worshiped graves and regarded idols and creatures as creator! 'Umar ibn al-Farid (rahmat-Allahi 'alaih), a Maliki and a Qadiri, who passed away in Egypt in 576 A.H. (1180) and was known as 'Sultan al-'ashiqin' (Head of he lovers) and whose heart burnt in flames with love and affection for Rasulullah and the awliya', the inheritors, praises the superiors of tasawwuf befitting their honor in his famous eulogy Khamriyya. The heretics who are marked as 'heretic' and 'sufferer of calamity' in the eternity cannot attain the blessings of being believers no matter how well it is explained and how many documents or even karamat they are shown. Hadrat Mawlana 'Abd ar-Rahman Jami (rahimah-Allahu ta'ala), who passed away in Herat in 898 A.H. (1492), answers them very well in the following quatrain:
World's lions are all links of the same chain;
how dare a fox break it with wile?
If a heretic takes awliya's names in vain,
they remain spotless, he proves himself vile.
Only his beard will catch fire if someone tries to blow out the torch lit by Allahu ta'ala." [Sayyid Abdulhakim Arwasi, Rabita-i Sharifa, Istanbul, 1342 (1924).]