You want to learn, you want to know zikr, chanting? Very nice upstate, nice land, nice wood, but there is a fee. You want to learn chanting, there is a fee, you want to learn Nirvana, there is a fee. Everything, there is a fee. But it’s not just money. That means the one who is guiding you doesn’t need anything from you and doesn’t want anything from you. If he needs and if he wants, then he is not a person leading you from this world to the other world. He’s a person leading you from this world to this world and to a deeper Jahannam. So, how do you follow someone? How do you know if that one is right? So many people are stuck there.
How do you know if that one is right? But I don’t see anyone getting stuck in remaining hungry, not knowing what to eat when they enter into a café or restaurant seeing so many choices. They make a choice, and they eat. They say, ‘okay, this is good. Next time I come and I try a different one. This is no good, next time I come I’m not going to try this.’ It’s very clear. But why when it comes to following someone, they are stuck. ‘Oh, I don’t know. Is that one perfect?’
Are you perfect? Are we perfect to follow a perfect one? What is perfection too? We don’t understand what is perfection, we have never seen it, how can we judge what it is? And there are so many things that the guide may do that is not going to make too much sense. But it is very clear. What is he doing? Is he taking anything from you? Does he want anything from you? Does he even say, ‘you must love me. You must obey me.’ Does he say that? He does, he wants something from you.
Choice must be given. This is free will. Free will is not to use your energy to do wrong things. Free will is in despite of your desires, you are going to use that will to do the right thing. This is free will. Free will is not going to say, ‘I’m going to use drugs,’ or ‘I’m going to smack someone,’ or ‘I’m going to destroy,’ that is not free will, to live life senselessly worse than animal. That is not free will. Free will is despite that we are living in this animal sensory world, that you must rise against it. That is Divine will, that is Divine freewill that Allah has only given to mankind, not to animals, not even to angels. Not even to angels. He did not create the angels to represent Him. He created mankind to represent Him. Which is in Islam, mankind, Insan, is call Hazreti Insan, the blessed, the Holy Insan, the Holy mankind. And when Allah created mankind, even the angels did not understand. The angels, they have no desire. Angels, they are close to Allah. Of course they are, but Angels they have no desire. Angels were not created to know their Lord. They are created to do the bidding of Allah. We have been created to know our Lord, to discover Him, to represent Him. This is a huge responsibility and this is a huge intention, Divine intention that is put only in mankind. The animals, they are also doing Allah’s bidding without question. When mankind, slowly he starts to discover himself, then he moves closer and he begins to discover his Lord. Because the Prophet said, ‘the one who knows himself, he knows his Lord.’ This is why Tasawwuf, spirituality, what we’ve just said in the past one hour, no one in the right mind who follows any faith tradition is going to say, ‘no, that is wrong. That is against to our teachings.’ No one is going to say that. Everyone is going to say, ‘this is exactly what we believe in.’ We are just using a couple of different words, showing a couple of different shades, putting some emphasis over here instead of here, but we are accepting. Which is why in 1400 years of Tasawwuf, Sufi traditions, you will always find Christians and Jews, Priests and Rabbis, pundits, anyone who is waking up to their spirituality, to sit and to speak and to take. You don’t find them sitting and fighting and arguing. Because now, it is to go deeper. It is not about the covering of religion anymore. It is about what is motivating us from the inside, the intention.
We are Muslims, Alhamdulillah we are following in this way. The shariat, the Divine laws it is very important to us, but the way we approach it is understanding what it is. It is not doing it so that we can go to Paradise. It’s not doing it because we are afraid that we may be punished. This is different. We are doing it because of love. Allah deserves to be worship. He created us not to put us to Hell. He created us because He wants us to know Him. We don’t have a heart? You should. If you have a good friend, and all that good friend wants is for us to understand him and to come closer to him and he is giving us everything, and we are saying, ‘we don’t care about you.’ Isn’t that terrible? Which is why now, Tasawwuf and Sufism move into love. But it is not love the way that the world understands love, which is just fulfilling your pleasure senses. It is something that is higher than that. It is something that completely overtakes you.
So when you find a guide, and you consult with him every now and then, and you remember him, he, that guide in Tasawwuf and Islam, that Sheykh, he is an inheritor of the Prophet, he is waris ul-Anbiya. The way that the Prophets are to their nations, the Sheykh it is to their people. So what is his duties now? His duties, the most important things to him, it is not his family, it is not himself, it is not his possessions, it is not his land, it is not his idea, it is you. Just as the most important things for the Prophet (asws), it is his nation. And he did not make any distinction in his nation, to say, ‘I only pray for the Muslims.’ His nation is everyone on the face of this earth. Whether they believe or they don’t believe. It doesn’t matter. He cries out for us. His first word when he was born was, ‘Ummati, Ummati – O my nation, my nation.’ And his last words before he passed, is calling out for us. So, if we are in this way of Sufism, of Tasawwuf, slowly we start to even feel something that the Prophet (asws) is feeling. We start to have more compassion, more understanding. We start to become more alert to the enemies that is inside of us first.
Just as the companions they took the Prophet as a guide to bring them to Allah, so we are holding on to our Sheykh as a guide. Everyone, once they are on that main highway, they can walk or they can run, they can sprint or they can take a car. Doesn’t matter. That is according to you. This is another thing that distinguishes us from a cult, although they call us a cult, so what? We are not trying to make everyone to be the same. In fact it is against to our principle to make everyone to be the same. Because everyone is testifying the uniqueness and the Oneness of their Lord. He created you ‘X’(Sheykh mention a murid’s name) there has never been another ‘X’ before, although you share his name, but like you, no. And there will never be another one up till Judgement Day. Never. Only you. And you have been created, you specially have been created to know Allah. He’s not saying, ‘there’s another one. If you don’t work out, there’s another one.’ No. There’s you, there’s you, there’s you. Each and everyone of us, testifying to the Oneness of Allah.
Doesn’t the world see, more they are trying to put Islam in a bad light, more the sun is going to shine. They are banning people from saying Allah, big debate years ago, Allah and God they are different, never mind if God is from German and Germanic Christians monotheism is completely different from Germanic paganism. This is different from Roman Catholicism, this is different from the Israelite tradition of Jesus himself, because he was from the bani Israel. But the word ‘Allah,’ it cuts beyond any tradition or any race. It is not, okay, there is one Allah, one God for the Christians, one God for the Jews, one God for the Muslims. No, it’s One. We call Him in different names. But you call Him, God. You say you love Jesus. What did Jesus call him? Alaha. Because he was speaking Aramaic. He wasn’t speaking English. He wasn’t speaking German. You are trying to ban people, the Israeli they ban calling the azan for fajar prayer. Now, even the Christians from the bell tower they are calling azan. They are saying, ‘Allahu Akbar.’ Because world is slowly starting to wake up between what is right and what is wrong, what is just propaganda and what is the real thing. Now people who have belief and when we are speaking the khutba, we are talking about believers, and this cuts across everything, ethnicity, everything. Do you believe? Yes, and in these days, we are looking for belief. We are not looking for the trappings of religion. Because there are many they look like they believe, and there are many they look like they don’t believe. And in these days, it’s very simple. Do you believe in justice? Do you believe you should live with justice, stand up for justice? Do you know what is right or wrong? What is happening in this world right now? Pick anything and say is this right or wrong? It’s clear. Then, with that, you will find unity. Every unity is testifying to the unity of Allah.
So this is what, we are here and in this tradition, this is nothing new, this has been in place since the Holy Prophet (asws), that he gives the message, one is for the awam, for the masses, and he says, for those who wants to learn, I have more to give to you. For those who wants to go deeper, I have something to give to you. Sufism, Tasawwuf, is not a sect in Islam, to say that one sect is opposite to another sect, and they are fighting. No. Tasawwuf is like going to post-graduate school in spirituality. Everyone goes to grade school, that is Islam. Now, if you want to have Iman, if you want to have faith, then you are going to deepen it, you are going to study a little bit. But if you want to have Ihsan, to have beauty now, you are going to beautify your manners, your edep, and you are going to look at what you are doing to make it more beautiful to your Lord, then that is when Tasawwuf enters. So it’s going deeper and it’s going higher.
So, we follow our Sheykh. It’s a long tradition. He took it from his, he took it from his. And this tradition, for anything that has real value in this world right now, it’s not contain in books. It cannot be. Definitely not from google or YouTube. Definitely not. It’s pass from heart to heart, from that time until now. You may discover couple of things here and there, but to get it, there has to be this spiritual transmission. So that one is obligated now to pray for you, to help you in this world and the next, to intercede for you. In America especially, if you get into trouble with the law, what is the first thing that you do? Call your lawyer. You don’t call your father, you don’t call your mother, you don’t even call Allah. Tauba astaghfirullah. You call your lawyer. Correct? Now, if you know that you are in trouble and this world is in big trouble, and the one who is on the spiritual way, not only he understands spirituality, he understands what blocks his spirituality and the trouble that he is in if he doesn’t have the key to unlock it, that time you call a lawyer. And the Prophet and the Sheykhs they are there to help you to maneuver and to bring you up. And this is according to you. Sheykh is not going to treat this one like this and this one like this and this one….no. Especially the old school way, you must know everyone and everyone must know them well. I just don’t mean spiritually they are going to know them, they are going to be involved in their lives. You are going to have a community. As much as you can, Insya’Allah.
So, this is what we are busy with, this is our intention. This is what we are doing and anyone is welcome to come, anyone is welcome to go. Welcome to those who come, farewell to those who leave. It has to be. That is free will too. Insya’Allah al-Fatiha. Amin. SelamAleykum warahmatullahi Wabarakatu.
Sheykh Lokman Efendi Hz
Khalifah of SahibulSaif Shaykh Abdulkerim el Kibrisi (qs),
OSMANLI DERGAHI- New York
25 Safar 1438
November 25, 2016