Question from a Murid: How should I walk in this way to do less mistakes and to do more right things?
Be busy with other things. Be busy with some work. A lot of the times, you make the mistakes because you have too much time, correct? When you have too much time, you have nothing to do, we were just talking about this, right? Then that’s when the sheytan whispers, saying ‘why don’t you do this? Why don’t you do that?’ You say ‘yeah, why not? I have time.’ Sheykh Effendi Hz, he is always saying that every day when he wakes up, he has a list of things that he has to do. And I was very happy, because I used to do that a lot. I still do. Planning the day. Because wasting it is haram, and to waste time, Allah swt is swearing on time, it is more haram.
So when you are in that habit, you wake up now in the way of Allah, in this way, you say, ‘now, I have to do this. I have to pray, I have to fix something connected to this way, I have to spend time with the family like this, I have to go to work like this,’ you are concentrating now, you are making intention to do all those things for the sake of Allah. You’re not making intention to do wrong things. Don’t wake up with the intention to do wrong things. Just by having good intention, you are going to get rewarded from that. And stick to the plan that you have. Make your day to be busy running in the service of Allah. That time, your mind is not going to run away somewhere because you say ‘I have to finish this by this time, I have to do this, I have to speak to this person, I have to do.’ Everyone, you will have things to do if you listen to your heart and you ask ‘what is it that I can do for the sake of Allah?’ Whether you are in the Dergah or whether you are in Dergah somewhere else, or if you’re not in the Dergah. Maybe you’re saying ‘I’m just going to read something of the history of Sahabi e-Kiram. Maybe I’m just going to read something about the history of the Ottomans. Maybe I’m going to look at something.’ But you keep your day full like that. And every day is going to be slightly different.
That way, you have a mistake, you’re trying to fix it, you keep yourself busy, you keep yourself distracted because the ego now, it is worse than any animal. But the animal, one of the ways you can control an animal it is when you distract it, correct? You distract it. You don’t try to attack it. You let it to become what? In ghaflet. Our ego is like that. Sometimes, when you think wrong things, whether it is depression or sadness or thinking wrong things, sit and watch yourself thinking. Sometimes it comes very strong but most times, it comes in and out. You never stay there for ten minutes, half hour just on one wrong thing that you are thinking. It comes in and out because that is the nature of whispering. It is soft. It is near, it is soft, but it goes in and out. What makes you to now take that whispering and to make it into a reality is when you give it a lot of attention. Sometimes no longer the whispering is there, but you want to hear it in your mind over and over again. You are the one taking it and stretching it and making it to become more than what it is. Because sometimes you notice yourself when even when you think wrong things, it goes in, ‘okay,’ then, suddenly, you get distracted with something else, correct? And then you say, ‘oh, no, no, no, I’m supposed to be sad,’ so you go back to it again and then you become sad, you thinking, thinking, then something else happens, and… Then you say, ‘no, no, no, I have to.’
All those other times, it is not coming from sheytan, really. It is coming from you. Sheytan already put the seed there. You are the one who is making it to grow. Now that kind of distraction is coming from Rahmani. It’s making you to move away from the wrong side to the right side. Be aware of that. When you are a little bit more aware of that then you are not going to take it so seriously. You know it’s going to come, it’s going to go. Then you’re going to know, ‘okay, I feel like this,’ you have to be honest with yourself. Do you like this or you don’t like this? Do you want to be in this kind of situation or not? Only you can answer it. For some people, they want to. So even if Rahmani distractions happening, they push it away because ‘no. I want to be sad. No, I want to be bad, I want to be like this, I want to be like that.’ You are the one making the decision. That’s why on the Day of Judgment, sheytan is going to say to Allah, ‘I never forced anyone to do anything. I did not take a gun to put it to his head to force him to do anything. I just whisper.’ But you know what? Allah is also whispering to us. Allah is nearer to us than sheytan. Allah is nearer to us than our jugular vein. And Allah is saying in that same ayat He is whispering to our soul.
The whisperings of sheytan, sometimes it can get really loud, but there are so many things that is happening to you in the day that could make you to forget. Whatever it is, everyone, like this or like that, they go to sleep. You forget about it or that burden, your Sheykh comes and he takes it away and you can wake up more refreshed. Otherwise, with all the burdens of the past day, you’re going to be crushed. You cannot move to the next day. That way, slowly you understand the method of your ego, the method of sheytan. They have a method. They are not that original. They are not that unpredictable. It is very predictable. The thing is whether you like it or you don’t like it, you want it or you don’t want it. If you say ‘no, I want it,’ because a lot of people, they want to be depressed. They want to. Because not wanting means that there is a choice that is given, and you choose that. If there is no choice to be given, then that’s something else. But there are choices. Make the right choice. That time, when you are distracted, at least you are not going to make that same mistake over and over again with the same kind of frequency.
Certain things, maybe for the rest of your life you’re going to carry certain things. It is never going to go away, maybe. But know that Allah has the Power to change it. And in so many ways, if that makes a servant to run to his Master and to beg for Allah’s forgiveness because he’s saying ‘I still cannot get rid of this,’ that itself, in some ways it is a mercy because you are always asking Allah. So many times when Allah gives what we want, we forget Him. Yes, even about the ego. You start thinking that you are a good one, you are the best one, you are without any mistakes. Past mistakes you don’t remember, you say, ‘oh, it’s all finished. Right now, I’ve finished with all those things, I’m not doing.’ You start seeing yourself as proud, as arrogant, as someone who has achieved something. But the purpose of servanthood is to understand that you are a servant and you are always in need. You are always weak.
Use that then. Use the mistakes that you have as a weakness, say to Allah ‘I am Your weak servant and I’m asking You because all power and all help is only coming from You.’ And of course, when you have the opportunity you are going to be in the Jamaat. That can make that distraction even better. That can pull you away from your ego, away from yourself, that you breathe a little bit more free. When you are not here doing so many things, when you are at home, all these things it bothers you, every day you – what else is there to do? You’re going to go outside? What is it outside? You look, 99.9% of the time no one is pleasing Allah. What they are doing, it’s not reminding you of Allah, not reminding you of death. I’m not talking, also, about unbelievers. I’m talking about believers.
You go home, everyone entering into their own rooms, having their own lives. What are you going to do? You turn on the TV, it’s a sewer channel. So you are always feeling very tight. Then from that tightness, you will get more angry, more agitated, because your spirit is not free. That’s why in the old days there are Dergahs everywhere, to run away from this world and then to come to the Dergah and just breathe free, to step here is going to bring blessings to you. The air is different, the water is definitely different, and the sun is different. It hits you in different ways. Ways you understand and ways you don’t understand. Your sleep is different. You become recharged. Now if you do ibadat, if you do worship on top of that, you’re going to get even more faith. But even just walking, Sheykh Effendi told me one time, he says, if a person, if he knows just by walking on this land how much blessings is going to come, he’s going to walk everywhere, he’s going to do everything.
One of the branches of faith, ah, this is something that the Wahhabis they cannot deny. Islam is divided into seventy-three different branches. What is the first branch, the most important one? It is to say ‘La ilaha illallah.’ And the last, the seventy-third branch, it is to remove something harmful in the way. Whether it is a stone that is in the way on the road, piece of wood, something that is harmful there, you’re removing it. There is a physical way that you are removing the harm, now there is also the way, spiritually, that you are helping to remove the harm of that way, spiritually. That is a branch of faith. So which means that if you say ‘La ilaha illallah’ nighttime, that we are making a zikr, and in the morning time you get up and you work, yes, you even go to the barn to help, you’re fulfilling now, between that and that, all seventy-three branches of faith. You don’t have to know too much, you don’t have to study too much, but you are doing. You are doing it. Insya’Allah, may Allah accept it insya’Allah. Understand? Fatiha. Amin. Selam Aleykum wa Rahmatullah.
Sheykh Lokman Efendi Hz
Khalifah of SahibulSaif Shaykh Abdulkerim el Kibrisi (qs),
OSMANLI DERGAHI- New York
16 Shaban 1438
May 12, 2017