Alhamdulillah, Alhamdulillah, Alhamdulillahi Rabbil Alamin. Wasalatu wa salamu ala rasulina Muhammadin wa ala alihi wa sahbihi ajmain nahmadulllahu ta’ala wa nastaghfiruhu wa nashadu an-lailaha ilallahu wahdahu la sharika lah wa nashadu anna sayyidina Muhammadin abduhu wa habibuhu wa rasuluhu salallahu alayhi wa ala alihi wa azwajihi wa ashabihi wa atbaihi.
Khulafail Rashidin mahdin min ba’di wuzerail immeti alal tahkik. Khususan minhum alal amidi khulafai rasulillahi ala tahqeeq. Umara il mu’mineen. Hazreti abu bakr wa umar wa uthman wa ali. Wa ala baqiyati wa sahabai wa tabieen, ridwanallahu ta’ala alayhim ajmain.Ya ayyuhal mu’minun al hadirun, ittaqullaha ta’ala wa ati’uh. Inna allaha ma allathina-ttaqaw wal-lathina hum muhsinun. Alhamdulillahi Rabbil Alameen. Wa Salatu wa Salamu ala Ashrafil Ambiya’i wa Imam al-Mursaleen, Sayyidina wa Mawlana Muhammadin wa ala alihi wa sahbihi ajmain.
All praises are due to Allah, Lord of the Universes. All praises are due to Allah Who is the First, the Last, the Manifest, the Hidden, the One who has Might and Power over all things. All praises are due to Allah Who sent His Habib, Sayyidina Muhammad (asws), as the Mercy to the Universes. And may all peace and blessings be upon the Imam of the Messengers, the Master of the Prophets, the Sultan of Creation, the Intercessor of the Sinners, the Grandfather of Hasan and Huseyin, Sayyidina Muhammad (asws), and upon his noble family and blessed companions, especially upon the Four Khulafa-e-Rashideen, Hz. Abu Bakr el-Siddiq, Hz. Umar el-Faruq, Hz. Osman el-Ghani, and Hz. Ali el-Murtaza, and all those who follow them until the Last Day.
O Believers! Welcome to you on this Holy Day of Jummah, the Second Jummah of the Holy Month of Shaban, the Month of Holy Prophet (asws). Shaban is a Holy Month, and Shaban is given to us as a chance to prepare for the Month of Ramazan that is coming soon. Insha’AllahurRahman, we are not going to miss that chance.
O Believers! Tomorrow night, we are going to enter into one of the most important nights of the whole year. We are going to enter into the night that is writing the destinies for each and everyone of us, for the whole ummat. We are entering into the night, that if we treat it with respect, then the whole year is going to come, will open up to us, insyaAllah. But if we pass through it with ghaflat, with heedlessness, with stubbornness and with ignorance, our whole year may become a disaster. The night we are about to enter into, it is Laylatul Beraat, the Night of Nisfu-Shaban.
What is this Night? The Holy Prophet (asws) is informing us in a Hadith being narrated by Hz. Abu Hurayra (ra), which is recorded by Ghawth al-Azam Sheykh Abdul Qadir Gilani in the Ghunya al-Talibeen, saying:Jibril (as) came to me on the night of mid-Sha`ban and said to me: “Ya Muhammad (asws), raise your head to the paradises!” I asked him: “What night is this?” He replied: “This is the night when Allah (swt) opens three hundred of the gates of mercy, forgiving all who do not make a shirk, all those who do not make partnership to Allah. The only exceptions are those who practice sorcery (black magic), they are addicted to liquor (wine) or they persist in riba, in usury,in interest taking, and in forbidden sex; these He does not forgive until they repent.”
At a quarter of the night, Jibril (as) came down and said: “Ya Muhammad (asws), raise your head!” So I looked up, to behold the gates of Paradise wide open. At the first gate an angel was calling: “Good news for those who make ruku’ this night, who are bowing down this night!” At the second gate an angel was calling: “Good news for those who make sajdah this night, those who make prostration this night!” At the third gate an angel was calling: “Good news for those who make dua, who make supplication, who ask from their Lord, this night!” At the fourth gate an angel was calling: “Good news for those who make zikir this night!” At the fifth gate an angel was calling: “Good news for those who cry this night from fear of Allah!” At the sixth gate an angel was calling: “Good news for those who submit this night!” At the seventh gate an angel was calling: “Will anyone ask, that his request may be granted?” At the eighth gate an angel was calling: “Will anyone seek forgiveness, that he may be forgiven?”
I said: “Ya Jibril, how long will these gates remain open?” He replied: “From the beginning of the night until the break of dawn.” Then he said: “Ya Muhammad (asws), tonight Allah has as many slaves emancipated from the Fire as the number of woolly hairs on the flocks and herds of Kalb.” And Holy Prophet (asws) is telling us that in Leylatul Beraat, Allah comes down to the nearest paradise during that night beginning with sunset and says: ‘Is there no one asking forgiveness that I may forgive them? Is there no one asking sustenance that I may grant them sustenance? Is there no one under hardship that I may make things easy for them? Is there not such-and-such, is there not such-and-such, and so forth until dawn rises.’
O Believers: That is the night that we are about to enter into. We are entering into a night that Allah (swt) is giving to us as another chance, as one of His infinite number of Mercies. A chance to repent from our sins. A chance to become clean again. A chance to beg Him to open our year to become a year that is pleasing to Him, to His Prophet, to our Sheykh. So now we have to ask ourselves, how are we preparing for this night, and how are we going to spend this night?
In this 21st century, many Muslims, they are saying, don’t honor this night. They have the ignorance to say, there is no such thing as Leylatul Beraat in Islam. They are saying do not make ruku, do not make sajdah, do not make dua, do not make zikr, don’t do anything in this night. Just sleep and be in ghaflet. Those ones they are a separate category, because they are going to lose out on this blessing that Allah (swt) has sent to this nation. Then there are those people, who are saying they are Ahlus Sunnah wal Jamaat, who are saying they are Ahle Tasawwuf, they are following Tarikat, they are following Sufism, but they are introducing a new poison into this religion. They are saying, ‘don’t worry about your yesterday. They are saying, Allah (swt) is so Merciful. Allah is Ghafoor, He is the most forgiving, He is Raheem, the most compassionate. Do not worry, definitely He will forgive you. Do not become sad about your sins. Do not become depressed. Allah is going to forgive you.’ They have fallen into a trick and trap of sheytan that the True friends of Allah they have been warning us about.
Our Sheykh, Sahib el-Sayf Sheykh Abdul Kerim el-Kibrisi el-Rabbani (ks) is saying: Sheytan is fooling us. Sheytan is saying to us, “Ah, the mercy of Allah is there. Don’t worry.” Then Allah is saying to us through another ayat, BismillahirRahmanirRahim. “That Sheytan comes to you with the mercy of Allah. Don’t be fooled by that.” The attitude of the so-called Sufis of today when they say, just be happy, Allah loves you, Allah will forgive you, Allah wants you to not worry, where is it coming from? Definitely it is not coming from the Holy Prophet (asws). Definitely it is not coming from the Sahaba-e-Kiram, from his companions. Definitely it is not coming from the Evliyaullah. Because the Ones that Allah (swt) loves, the ones that Allah loves and that they love Allah, they have the Fear of Allah.Because their fear is, they don’t want to lose that love.
The Holy Prophet (asws) is saying, The highest point of all wisdom it is the Fear of Allah. Look at Holy Prophet (asws). He was the Chosen Prophet. He was the First in Creation. He is Habibullah. And yet he used to cry out of fear of his Lord. He is saying in his Hadith Sherif: ‘I know Allah more than anyone amongst you and I am the most fearful of Him among you.’ And yes, Holy Prophet (asws), he used to cry out of Fear of Allah. One Sahabi is saying, we were praying with Holy Prophet (asws), and he was weeping so much that a sound came out of his chest like a boiling pot. And the Sahaba-e-Kiram, the best in creation after the Prophets, they did not sit and think that Allah loves us and we are safe. They used to sit with the Taqwa of Allah. Hz. Umar al-Faruq (ra), it is narrated that he had two grooves under his eyes because of crying so much out of the fear of Allah. Hz Umar. And one person passed by his house, and he heard Hz. Umar speaking to himself, saying: Ya Umar Ibn al-Khattab! O Prince of the Believers! O Allah! Well-done O family of al-Khattab. You must fear Allah or that He will certainly torture you.’
So these are the Beloveds of Allah, and these are the ones who love Allah much. They don’t take Allah for granted.They fear Allah. Muslims today they don’t fear nothing. Theyd don’t fear Allah, they don’t fear the Prophet. Definitely they don’t fear the friends of Allah. Definitely. But mankind has never before live in so much fear in their own daily lives that has ever before. They were standing, our role models, in Fear of their Lord. They were not laughing and jumping and playing, especially when the whole world is burning down, especially when Islam is being humiliated, especially when the Prophet is being humiliated, especially when the bloods of the innocent ones they are being spilled everyday. They were not laughing and jumping and playing, saying we are forgiven and everything is okay. They were crying and pleading with their Lord to be happy with them.
Our Master Hz. Hasan al-Basri (ra), he was giving advice to one young man he saw who was laughing too much. He was laughing too much. He was passing his limits. As you know, Holy Prophet (asws) says, ‘the one who laughs too much, he deadens his heart. His heart becomes dead.’ You’ll start becoming insensitive. You don’t feel anymore. All you want to do is just to laugh at everything. And this is exactly what has come to this world today. Turn on anything, television, laptop, your iPhone, all people want to see is something that is going to make their heart to laugh, to make their heart to be dead. But at the same time they are seeing the suffering and the torture of all their friends and families and people in this world, but it’s not moving them anymore. It’s not moving them at all. You can see as much blood as you want, it’s just entertainment. Which is why, yes, as our Sheykh Effendi is saying, stand up comedy it is forbidden in Islam. To stand up and just to make fun, and everyone just to sit for one hour just laughing, laughing, laughing, laughing, laughing, laughing, it deadens your heart. You say, it is a way to teach? There are so many ways to teach. But to stand up and to make people laugh and to forget themselves, and to forget their Lord, in that Ghaflet, that is one way that you lose the fear of Allah.
So Hz Hasan Al-Basri he was giving advice to one young man who was passing his limits. The heart seeing that it is dying, it is dead because he is laughing so much, he just wants to have fun. Everything he wants to do is to have fun. And this is exactly what we are teaching our children today, whatever you do, just have fun. Everything is for fun, for happiness. Nothing is for the sake of Allah anymore. There is no heaviness anymore. Especially people living in the west and those who come into Islam to, losing the heybet of Islam, saying, instead of teaching, putting Islam in their lives, they are going to put the kafir values into Islam and to say, ‘this is how you should be, really Muslim.’
Hz Hasan Al-Basri said, ‘My nephew! Have you safely passed over the Sirat?” The youth said, “No.” Hasan Al-Basri asked, “Have you received news that you will end up in Paradise or in Hell?” The youth said, “No.” Hasan Al-Basri asked him, “Why do you laugh then, May Allah save you, while the matter ahead is horrifying?”
Hasan Al-Basri (ra) is not scaring this man. But he is showing that this man, he is in complete ghaflet, that he is not even thinking about his death. He’s not even thinking about his sins. He’s not even thinking about how to fix himself. Like today’s majority Muslims, everyone thinks we are safe, definitely we are going to go to Paradise so we have to concentrate in this world first, to make this world into a Paradise. But this world is turning into a hell every single day because everyone is falling into their own egoistic selfishness.
So this is the advice that is coming to us from those who have passed before us. And our Sheykh, Sahib el-Sayf, Sheykh Abdul Kerim el-Kibrisi el-Rabbani, he is giving us that advice in words that everybody can understand. He is warning us against this trick of sheytan in words that are simple, that the whole world can take and fix themselves with those words. He is saying: Allah is saying to us in another ayat, “So little time left for Judgment Day and the Mankind is still heedless.” He is giving us another warning there that, ” You should wake up to yourselves.” Don’t take Allah’s orders, Allah’s words as if your buddy is saying something to you and later you are going to say, “Okay, do you forgive me?” “Okay, I forgive you.” Allah is forgiving you now. He is forgiving as long as you have the breath of life. As soon as you remember sincerely, you turn around sincerely asking from your Lord, asking from our Lord safety, protection and forgiveness. It will reach. But not asking one day and the next day turning back to the same arrogance. No. Allah is sending to us the Prophet (asws), sending the ayats and sending hundreds of thousands of Waliullah,the friends of Allah, to remind us this, to keep this in ourselves alive.
O Believers! The Night of Beraat is almost here. We should not be arrogant to think that we have already been forgiven. None of us here, not me, not you, should think that you are already in safety. None of us here should be stubborn and arrogant and to think that you don’t need the Zikr or the Sohbet. Better ones than us who have been with our Sheykh longer, they thought that way, where are they now? This night should make us to become more humble, and make us to understand. We need to beg our Lord for His forgiveness, for the Tawba for the wrong things that we have done, to make the intention not to return to those wrong things, and to do it with sincerity.
If we want a clean Beraat, then that Beraat, that stamp of approval, this is not a game, this is not a joke, there is a stamp of approval, it is in the hands of our Sheykh. If we want our book to be given clean, and if we want the next year to be clean, then we must make him to be pleased with us. That time, insha’Allah ar-Raman, we will be from the ones who will be counted as the winners on this night. Amin.
Jumma Khutba by Sheykh Lokman Efendi Hz,
Khalifah of SahibulSaif Shaykh Abdulkerim el Kibrisi (qs),
OSMANLI DERGAHI- New York
14 Shaban 1437
May 20, 2016.