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 has created the Heavens and the Earth and all that is between them. All praises are due to Allah Who created the sun, the moon, the stars, and set them in their orbits. All praises are due to Allah who created Mankind in the Most Perfect Form. All praises are due to Allah Who sent His Habib, His Beloved, Sayyidina Muhammad (asws), to perfect Good Manners.
And may all peace and blessings be upon the Sultan of Creation, the Imam of the Messengers, the Master of the Prophets, the Lamp of Guidance, the Intercessor of the Day of Judgment, 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.
Ya Ayyuhal Mu’minoon! O Believers! Welcome to you in this Holy Day of Jummah. Today, Insya’Allah, is the Last Day of the Holy Month of Zul Qaida. And, insya’Allah ar-Rahman tonight we will enter into the Holy Month of Zul Hijja, the Month of the Hajj, the month of sacrifice, the Month of Kurban. O Believers! These are not ordinary days and nights. Allah swt Himself, Jalla wa’ala, is swearing by these days and nights in the Holy guvbn ,Quran, in Surah al-Fajr. He is saying: BismillahirRahmanirRahim. Wal Fajr. Wa layaalin Ashr. He is saying, swt, ‘By the Dawn. By the Ten Nights’. And Hz. Ibn Abbas (ra) is saying that the Ten Nights means the first Ten Nights of Zul Hijja.
Rasulallah (asws) is saying in his Hadith Sherif about these Ten Nights. He is saying, (asws), ‘There are no other days that are as great as these in the sight of Allah, the Most Sublime. Nor are there any deeds more beloved to Allah then those that are done in these ten days. So increase in tahlil, which is to say La ilaha il-Alla, takbir, which is to say Allahu Akbar and tahmid, which is to say Alhamdulillah.
La ilaha il-Allah, Allahu Akbar, Alhamdulillah. O Believers! These are the precious days of Hajj and Kurban that we are approaching. These are the days that we are going to remember our Father Ibrahim (as). These are the Days that we are going to renew our intention to be the Servants of Allah swt. In these valuable days, we should sit down and ask ourselves sincerely, ‘What is a servant? And am I being a servant to my Lord, Allah swt?’
People in the 21st century are running after every knowledge, but they are not running after this knowledge. And we are talking about Muslims. And the knowledge that Muslims are chasing today is making them to be drunk, not making them to wake up to the reality of themselves, and the reality of this world, and the reality of Allah. From the secular knowledge to the religious knowledge. For those who are chasing secular knowledge, they do not believe in being a servant. They do not even believe in a Master. And they don’t believe in Allah. They are saying, ‘we are Masters to our own destinies, because we discover the galaxies, we are Masters to the galaxies, too.’ They are saying, ‘we have discovered so many galaxies, we have discovered so much about our earth, we have discovered so much about molecules and atoms, to the galaxies, we don’t need Allah. We can be our own Masters.’ So that knowledge on one side is leading people to Jahannam.
And on the other side we see that those who are chasing the religious knowledge are also falling into confusion and misguidance. The scholars, the ones who should be guarding the Sunnah and the Way of Islam, they are instead trying to take apart the religion of Allah brick by brick. These are not true scholars. There are true scholars, but majority, they are already bought by this world and the people of this world. They learn so much Shariat and they know so much Shariat. And then they say, ‘these laws, they were for a different time.’ And they use so many clever words and tricks to make people believe that Islam, it is a dead religion that we should stay in the books, and to make it alive again we have to take out so many things, and we have to put in new things. And now, they are taking, they are talking, all the things that are in the core of Islam and they are trying to say that the things that are in the core of Islam they are invented ideas.
In this 21st century, the roads of knowledge, they are leading people away from servanthood, because sheytan has become a highway robber on these roads and is robbing people of their faith. This is not something new, even to the 21st century. For 1400 years of our tradition, we have been taught by the Awliya Allah that the road of knowledge, if travelled without a guide, can lead a person to lose their faith, can lead a person to lose their humanity. And we are being taught that the way to servanthood, it is available to everyone. It is available to the scholar, it is available to the illiterate person. It is available to the white or to the black. It is available to men and to women, young and old. As our Sheykh was saying, ‘it doesn’t matter if you are a porter or a president, the road to being a servant of Allah is open.’ And the way to walk on that road is very simple. It is submission. The servant submits. The servant obeys. The servant says, ‘Sami’na wa Atha’na, I hear and I obey.’ And when the servant submits to his Lord, Allah swt, then his Lord makes him to become a Sultan. Because now that servant, he is doing the work, he is doing the hizmet, he’s doing the work of the Sultan. Now that servant is doing the Heavenly work. And he has no desire to be a Master. He is happy being a servant.
Just like the story of Malik Ayaz, who was the servant of one of the Righteous Sultans, Sultan Mahmud Ghaznavi. He became so trusted to the Sultan that the Sultan made him in charge of the treasury for the whole kingdom. But the other Pashas, the other vezirs, they became jealous. And they came to Sultan Mahmud and they said, ‘Ayaz is being very suspicious. He goes into the treasury and stays there for a long time. We think he is stealing.’ So Sultan Mahmud went to investigate. And he hid himself and waited for Ayaz to come into the room. And when Ayaz came into the room, he used to change from his Vezir clothes into the simple clothes of a slave. Because Malik Ayaz, he was just a slave in the palace of the Sultan. He was not learned. He didn’t come from lineage. He didn’t come from wealth. He was just a slave, but the Sultan saw something in him that was very special, that no one else had. So, when Ayaz came into the room, treasury room, he would change from his rich clothes of the vezir into the simple clothes of a slave, and he used to look at himself in a mirror and say, ‘remember, you are a servant. Remember, you are a servant. Remember, you are a servant.’
And so when a servant becomes like that, then he is reaching to safety. And that time, he is going to become Beloved to Allah.
Just like the story our Sheykh, SahibulSaif Sheykh Abdul Kerim el-Kibrisi el-Rabbani used to tell us about the Friend of Allah, Habib ul-Ajami. Habib ul-Ajami was living in the same time as Hz. Hasan al-Basri (ra). Hasan al-Basri, he was the Imam of Basra. He was the only one authorized to speak by Hz. Ali (kw). And Hz. Hasan al-Basri was also an Evliya. King sized Evliya. But at that time, he was representing the Way of Outwardly Knowledge. Habib ul-Ajami, he was not an Arab. He was Ajam. He was a simple person. He was an Ummi. He was an illiterate. He didn’t know how to read or how to write. But he was a Friend of Allah too, who had submitted himself completely to his Lord.
So one day Hz. Hasan al-Basri came to pray behind Habib ul-Ajami. He came a little bit late, so he came all the way to the end. And when Habib ul-Ajami, when he started reciting Fatiha, instead of saying Alhamdulillahi Rabbil Alameen, as our Sheykh said he said, Elhindeelillahi. He was mispronouncing. Changing. So Hz. Hasan al-Basri said, ‘this prayer is no good. This is not valid. This is a mistake and him being the Imam, all the prayer of the Jamaat is also not valid. It is going to invalidate the prayer.’ But he had manners, as the people of that time, they had the manners of royalty.They had the manners of kings. Because they were following the manners of Rasulullah (asws). He didn’t break the prayer to make fitnah. He didn’t say, ‘SubahanAllah.’ But after the Namaz was done, quietly he went to another spot in the masjid and he did his prayer again.
That night Hasan al-Basri had a dream. And he was shown his palace in paradise, and he was shown Habib ul-Ajami’s palace. And he was seeing that his own palace was huge. But every time he made a mistake, the angels would take one stone out of the palace. And when that stone came out, the whole palace would come crashing down. And when he would do good things, the palace would be built again. And then when he made just a small mistake, the angels would take out the stone and it would be destroyed all over again. He looked at Habib Ajami’s palace. It was also huge. But he saw that when Habib u-Ajami made a mistake, a stone also flew out of place. But the angels would immediately take that stone and fix the palace, so it never fall. It just kept getting bigger and bigger.
So Hz. Hasan al-Basri asked himself, ‘how is this happening? I am the Imam of Basra, and he is an Ummi, he cannot even recite Quran. He cannot even recite the fatiha.‘ So a Divine voice came to him saying, ‘you are relying on your knowledge, so when you do something bad, you get your penalty. When you do something good, you get your reward. Habib ul-Ajami relies only on his Lord. He has submitted himself to his Lord. He is not submitting and relying on his knowledge. His Lord does not look at his knowledge. His Lord does not look at his outward form, his Lord looks at his heart. The angels correct any mistakes he makes. O Hasan, you did not like what he does, but Allah loves what he does.’
And later, Hz. Hasan al-Basri was waiting on the riverbank. Habib ul-Ajami came up to him and said, ‘O my Grandsheykh, O Imam, what are you doing?’ Hasan al-Basri said, ‘What can I do, I am waiting for the boat to take me across the river.’ Habib ul-Ajami said, ‘You are the Imam of Basra, and you are waiting for a boat just like the normal people?
‘You had a doubt about my Fatiha, but I have a doubt too, on your Bismillah-i-Serif.’ And Hz. Habib ul-Ajami said with his faith, BismillahirRahmanirRahim, and he walked over the river. So that is the power of faith. This is not a story. This is real. And that faith, it does not need outward knowledge that is corrupt. Outward knowledge that is filled with wrong characteristics. That faith, it does not require money. That faith, it does not require a high position. All that faith requires is sincerity submission and obedience.
And our Sheykh is teaching us what that submission required for real faith is, saying, ‘So first you have to know what the treasure is. You have to know what you are looking for. And to get that you have to know what you have to sacrifice.’ You have to sacrifice something. Everyone has to sacrifice something. If you are not sacrificing it means that you are not really ready and prepared to get what is there. You just want it for your own ego. You are never going to get that for your ego because then ego is going to cut your neck off. Sheytan is going to take that treasure, that secret and he is going to go away. And you will be in big trouble then. So yes, in Tarikat sometimes Sheykhs show the people the most luxurious life and sometimes they show them the worst lifestyle that people are going through. You have to go through it to understand. You have to go through it, you may be with the Sheykh one week and you will be living like a king and the next week you will be living like a beggar in the street. Sheykh has the right to tell you, “Let’s go, we are going outside now to start begging from people.” Heh, what will you do then? If you have no submission, what are you going to do? You are going to say, “He is a thief. Is he trying to teach me how to steal or to ask from people?” So submission comes with everything you have. You no longer have your own desires, you no longer have your own ideas of thinking and understanding.
If you cannot think the way that the Sheykh is directing you then it is forbidden for you to think and to try to analyze things by your own self because you are going to come to the wrong understanding. Sheytan is going to be there. So your Sheykh is not there. Sheytan is going to be your Sheykh. And you are still going to say, “He is my Sheykh.” But no. Sheytan is your Sheykh. Sheytan is giving you directions.
That is the reality of what is in front of us. So to get real faith, there is a sacrifice. To become servants of Allah, we have to sacrifice. These are the days of Hajj. These are the days of Kurban. These are the days that we are remembering our Father Ibrahim (AS) and his sacrifice. O Believers! We should make intention to wake up. We should make intention to submit and to sacrifice. That time, insha’Allah ar-Rahman, when we call out Labbayk Allahumma Labbayk, that call will be accepted by our Lord. Amin.
Jumma khutba by Sheykh Lokman Efendi Hz
Khalifah of SahibulSaif Shaykh Abdulkerim el Kibrisi (qs),
OSMANLI DERGAHI- New York
30 Zul Qaida 1437
September 2, 2016.