Question: Is it advisable to physically draw away from society here in US?
Everyday in the United States you see millions of people physically withdrawing away from society, and not for reasons of religion either. Isn’t it? Ask any teenagers in the high school, everyone is withdrawing from society (Hoja laughs). Is it advisable to physically draw away from society?
We can never physically draw away from society. We cannot seclude ourselves now completely. We are here on top of the mountain but we are not secluded. We are completely open. We are completely open. We don’t close things for ourselves. And we don’t close things for people. It is open. People can come if they want to. Is it advisable to draw away from society? Yes it is advisable. This is advice given by the Holy Prophet (asws) 1400 years ago: When these conditions happen, and we are following our Sheykhs and the Awliyah Allah and they are saying, ‘now is the time,’ Sultanul Awliya is saying that, ‘now is the time.’ Sheykh Effendi has been saying that for decades. So we are withdrawing. Some withdraw completely. Some they withdraw halfway. Some they withdraw through their heart. Although they are in the society, but they are together with us.
The issue is not withdrawing from society. The issue is withdrawing from a society that is going to destroy you. There is complete difference. It is not just us running away to build another commune. It is not that. If the society we are living in now it is not going to destroy us and our children and out grandchildren, it is fine. But it is. And the advice given by the Holy Prophet (asws), the Awliya Allah, is to live a simple life. Find somewhere in the top of a mountain, live a simple life. And you know what? You don’t have to be muslims to do that. There are so many non-muslims who are doing that. There are so many unbelievers who are doing that. There are so many people with education or intelligence or understanding, who are doing that. There are people all over America that are doing that. They say, ‘we want a simple life.’
You don’t have to be a Sufi or in Tarikat to understand that the world that is spinning now is going to drive you crazy. So get out from that spin. I don’t want to use the word matrix. People are using that, so cliché. But come out from that chaos and that madness and come back to yourself. And you know what? What is withdrawing from society? What are we meaning when we say: withdraw from society?
Number one, we don’t say: withdraw. We say: go to the top of a mountain. Live a simple life. This life that we are trying to live, according to us it is simple, according to a lot of people, it is very backward. But according to some people too, it is very advance thinking. And you know what? For thousands of years, people have live like this. Not to go back thousands of years ago too. Go back one, two, generations, our grandfathers were living like this. And people who say that we are living in a backward life, we still have the best of the modern life here. We still have running water. Alhamdulillah. We still have electricity. We have all the comforts now. Allah is still making it easy for us, even if we want to withdraw for the sake of Allah swt. So now, everything that we are trying to do, even if it is something that the Holy Prophet (asws) is advising us, we have to go according now to the plan and to the teachings of our Sheykh. But not according to our own ego. Not according to: okay, Prophet says to withdraw, I’m going to withdraw according to my own idea, according to my own thinking. It is going to be dangerous that time. Because still you are using your ego.
So, understand what is the society. If the society, if you turn on the television and that is what society is watching, that is what society is hoping to become, that is what they are running after, we have the right to say we don’t agree. We don’t like it. We turn the television off and we want to live a simple life. Because it is not just a general term withdrawing from society. We want to live a simple life. Now, you don’t have the means to go on top of a mountain. You can still live a simple life. Why not? Does it mean now you are not going to talk to no one? No, you are going to talk. But you are going to understand: what is it that I have to say, when do I have to say, what is my role, what is my duty? You are not just going to live and to say and to do things in ghaflat or just according to your own head. Understand?
So that time, the main thing, it is to find a cure and to find health in yourself first. A lot of people, they are in that society, they still trying to help other people but they themselves are not hundred percent healthy in their mind, in their heart, in their spirit. You cannot help people too much that time. You try to help but you are like a candle that burns itself out. We want to connect ourselves to the Awliya Allah so that we shine with their light. Not with our light. And they are the ones who’s giving us power. And it’s continuous.
InsyaAllah, may it be easy. Purpose is important. Why you are withdrawing from society? Why? If you are doing it because you think you are better than other people, you are more superior than other people, you are more enlightened, it is still okay. But according to the teachings of our Sheykh, that is still a lot of kibr there, a lot of arrogance. It’s not too good, spiritually. Physically it’s good, you decide not to mix with the poisons outside, just to be a simple life. But spiritually it is not too good. Because we are here withdrawing to live a simple life to serve Allah and His Prophet (asws).
This much is enough, insyaAllah ar-Rahman. May Allah make it easy for all of us. May this week that we are going to pass give us more understanding and more faith and more wisdom to be able to become better ones and better servants to our Lord Allah swt. WaminaAllahu Taufiq. Al Fatiha.
Hoja Lokman Efendi Hz, Khalifah of Shaykh Abdulkerim el Kibrisi (qs) * OSMANLI DERGAHI- New York
14 Jamadilakhir 1436H
April 3, 2015