I just asked, what did you remember from the khutba? Today’s people they don’t have attention span more than a few seconds. Everything that we are looking at is designed just to please you for a few second. Then you jump to another thing, you jump to another thing, and you jump to another thing. You are not trained to sit down quietly and to just listen, just observe. Cut off completely from people, completely from nature. The Ramazan, cut yourself off from everything. Be alone a little bit. Sit quietly a little bit.
Oh, what we are saying, now Ramazan time, people are going to go crazy with their socializing. Ramazan time, you should socialize with Allah. Spend the time to socialize with Allah. Spend the time to socialize with the Prophet (asws). Don’t spend the time to be socializing with each other so much. What is good to socialize with each other, it is when you are making your prayer. Now it’s too much heaviness on one side. People are just being with each other just to satisfy their nafs. Just to satisfy their desire. That’s why. Nothing more too much. So I was asking, what did you remember from the khutba?
We are remembering our story Sheykh Effendi told us that really happened. It is not a story, it’s real. The people, they don’t even remember the zamu surah. They don’t even remember what is the surah that the Imam recites after the Fatiha. Correct? Once upon a time, a saint was standing outside the masjid watching people coming, filling up the masjid. It was a huge masjid, jami, gathering people together. People were coming in, after the khutba people were going out. Somebody asked him, said to him, ‘MashaAllah, so many people attend the Jumma.’ And that Saint was saying, ‘no, only handful of people attend the Jumma.’ The man was saying, ‘what do you mean? You see this masjid is filled up.’ And he said, ‘tomorrow, go there and when people are coming out, ask them what surah did the Imam recite.’ Of course here in the Osmanli Dergah, we are making it very easy. I’m reciting the same surah. But now, that one when the next day, when people were busy packing, like you know in the month of Ramazan the masjid are packed, but what are the people in the masjid, what are they paying attention to? The imam is paying attention to his kira’at and his tilawat. The makmum, the Jama’at, they are concentrating ‘when this imam is going to finish because I have to go home, I have to eat more, I have to do this.’
Everyone’s heart is away although their body is physically there in the masjid. Because to be there in the masjid is not just to say, ‘MashaAllah I’m in the masjd, MashaAllah blessings coming down.’ No. There is work to be done in the masjid. What did Hazreti Abu Hurairah saying? Sitting in a masjid, he’s fasting but he is sitting in a masjid. Why sitting in a masjid? Because they say it purifies our fast. What does that mean, you sit in a masjid you are going to purify your fast? Because now you are in a masjid, you are protecting yourself. You are protecting yourself from all the dunya that is outside. You are protecting yourself from engaging in useless talk, looking at useless things that is going to bring you more curse, listening to useless things. You are locking yourself. You are purifying your fast because the time that you spend in the masjid, which today MashaAllah everyone knows so much Quran, so much hadiths, but common things we say what dua you recite when you enter into the masjid? What dua? This is ahle sunnat way. You enter into a masjid, ah so many don’t even know to enter with which foot. And they are entering like a Firaun. Not entering like a servant. If we say which dua that you recite? You have to. You are calling yourself ahle sunnat correct? Ahle sunnat means that you are going to get the sunnat of the Rasulullah asws. So there is a specific dua that not too long ago they teach us children. It’s very common. Everybody must know. Nowadays, everyone knows Quran and hadiths but they don’t know basic things.
No basis, no foundation. They try to build so many things, it comes down, it gets destroyed. What is the dua you are making? You are making the intention that the duration that you are going to stay in the masjid is the what? This is going to be like a seclusion for you. This is going to be like when you are entering into the masjid, you are asking Allah, may my entrance into this masjid, the time that I spend here, my intention is to seclude myself. You are not going to the masjid to hang out with friends. These days you go to the masjid to play basketball. Because when there is no spirit anymore, they offer you dunya. When there’s no spirit in the jami, in the masjids, they offer you dunya. Pretty soon they are going to have Bingo night, oh I’m sorry, they already had Bingo nights in some masjid. Step by step following the Jews and the Christians.
Jami is something else. Sitting down in the masjid, you purify yourself. You don’t sit in the masjid and you start slandering and gossiping and backbiting and showing off and talking. In the old days, there was an edep in the masjid too. Not about the kids. The kids they can run around. The kids must feel happy and free up to a certain age, then you say, ‘sit.’ Because the kids they are going to follow you anyway. When they are young they’re running around a little bit. When they get older, they are going to sit right next to you. They are going to listen. Like the kids here that Sheykh Effendi had trained. They don’t understand hundred percent I’m saying. But they are looking at me, they are looking at you. They say, everyone is sitting, let us sit too. They learn then from a very young age to focus, to calm down, to breathe properly, to be with the jama’at, to be with the Saliheen. This is more invaluable, this is more beneficial than if you send them to memorise Quran in the school. You send them to memorise Quran, on the one hand they are learning how to memorize Quran, on the other hand you know what kind of stupidity they get into in those school, boarding school. They are not learning edep, they are not learning akhlak. Here, they’re sitting down just quietly. Easy they pick up edep, easy the pick up akhlak. Because sitting down like this and being quiet, understanding the edep, you have what? You have modesty. Even if the kid wants to scream, he’s saying , ‘everybody is not screaming why should I scream?’ He is modest. That modesty when it kicks in, faith kicks in. When faith kicks in, intelligence is there.
Purifying ourselves, entering into the masjid and saying that, you know the last ten days of Ramazan, what do you make? I’tikaf . The dua that you make when you enter into a masjid saying, ‘my intention is to enter into I’tikaf when I’m entering into the masjid.’ You get the reward. Because why? Everything is according to the intention. You can be entering into Mecca and Medina but you have the wrong intention, do you think you are going to get the reward? Do you think you are going to get the blessings? It is opened. If you have the blessings of Mecca and Medina, with the amount of Muslims going there, ohhhh, back and forth back and forth, this whole world, all the Muslim countries will be filled with Saints already, will be filled with people of a high stations of Islam and Ihsan. But no, we are seeing Muslims are falling deeper and deeper into the world. Because they are treating Hajj and Umrah just like a vacation. Intention is wrong. You are coming here to the masjid to purify, but you have to know what am I purifying myself from? You are lazy, you’re saying, ‘oh forgive me my sins, oh forgive my mistakes,’ do you know what the mistakes are? Do you mean what you are saying? Are you understanding the mistakes? Are you understanding the wrong actions, wrong intentions? Are you understanding how dangerous it was? Are you understanding how much damage it’s doing to other people? No, you don’t. You are just opening your hand and say, ‘Ya Rabbi, forgive me. Now what is there to eat?’ This is not purification. Purification is looking at every detail, and every detail, every small things, you are going to look at it as if it is a huge thing and you are going to try to clean it. This is what purification is.
So in this month of purification, don’t enter into this month just like the cows that we have in the barn. Take lessons from them. Most people are worse than cows. The cow, Sheykh Effendi is saying, evening time come their belly is so big like this, they are eating grass whole day, they lock them up into the barn, the stomach got smaller and smaller and smaller, then morning time you open, they get very worried. Why the stomach get smaller? Because whole night they are worried, is there going to be grass outside or not? Are we going to eat or not? Just from that worrying, the stomach get smaller, then when you open it, ahh they run, chasing after that. Day to day, everyday. At least they eat the grass and they produce everything for mankind. What are we producing? What are we producing? We eat and we drink, the month of Ramazan we fast then we eat and we drink. What do we produce? We are supposed to produce something in this month of Ramazan. Every animal we give them food and drink, they must produce something, correct? Even cats and dogs, you give them food, they must produce something. That one must protect you. That one must give companionship to you and run to catch the mice. What are you producing? For who? For your owner. Don’t say I’m producing this for my father, my mother, my son, my daughter. To your Owner. To Allah (Azza wa Jalla). What are you producing for Him?
This is the month of Ramazan where Allah is saying, ‘fasting has been prescribed to you as it has been prescribed for earlier nations.’ And what is the reason? Allah is replying that, Allah is continuing, for what reasons you are fasting? For togetherness? To bond with people? To have good food, to have warm fuzzy feelings with each other? This is what it’s all about. Good food, good company, good laughs. Is that what Allah is saying? Allah is saying, ‘fasting has been prescribed to you as it has been prescribed for earlier nations, so that you can find Taqwa.’ Nearness. Taqwa is what? Nearness. Nearness to Allah. Being aware and awake that Allah is with you. So be with Allah.
Whole day you wake up, thinking already what I’m going to cook. You’re caught in that hole there, you think you are going to be near to Allah? Because it has become that. Eating and drinking and shopping the whole month. Shopping. Concentrating on that. So you become no better, we are no better than that animal that is in the barn. Lock for a time, not eating and drinking, but once it opens become that animal again. Heedless and headless. But at least that animal produce. We must produce something. And Allah says, ‘fast, because it should produce Taqwa.’ Nearness to Allah.
The Bazaars are not going to bring you near to Allah. In fact, if you look at traditional writings of the scholars and the Saints about the bazaar, they are saying the bazaar is one of the most dirty places that Allah has ever created. It is filled with sheytan. The bazaar. Because the bazaar is just making you to be caught with this dunya and your nafs and your desires. There is a hadiths, holy Prophet (asws) is saying, ‘if a man jumps on his horse and he goes to the bazaar, and he says La ilaha ilallah Muhammadur Rasulullah, keeping his faith intact and he comes out, the reward for that man is as if he had gone to the Hajj and his Hajj is accepted.’ Meaning, keeping your faith. These days, nobody thinks. Ramazan, let’s fill up the mall, that’s the time. No malls, go to the internet. Shop. Muslim countries, let me not say. Now that disease is coming to non-Muslim countries. I’m watching something, someone is saying, ‘well fasting,’ he’s a Muslim, ‘it doesn’t really make you to lose weight. In fact you gain weight because you eat a lot iftar and you eat a lot sahur too.’ So you don’t lose weight. You actually gain weight. It’s notorious for that. I say, since when? Ohh, since you become like a cow. Your stomach is like this (expands and contracts).
You know you fast, one of the things that you realize when you are fasting is what? The desire comes from where? The eyes. It’s not really the hunger. You learn how to control it. Your body learns how to balance it. Your stomach gets smaller, doesn’t it? You discover I can’t really eat that much. One day, two days, three days. What a ahir Zaman tyrant, mankind, that they are pushing themselves, to gorge themselves, in the month of Ramazan when it is not natural. Your own body is not going to accept it. You will fall sick. You fast, you are cleaning yourself the whole day, only now science is telling uS the benefit of fasting. But what does fasting do? What does fasting do to you physically? All the energy of the body, it finishes when it’s digesting the food. After the food is digested, energy is released, now they say, ‘let’s do something.’ What are they going to do? Your body now is going to say, ‘okay, the knee there is something wrong there. Let’s go there and fix it. The neck is something wrong, the stomach is something wrong.’ Because they are not bogged down with the work of digesting food. After they have digested the food, all that energy and everything, now it goes into regenerating your body, making your body to become alive again. Because there is no more food coming in for a few hours. Especially necessary now in the summer months. Eh, yourself start renewing, start getting younger. You start to have more nur. Physically that’s what you get. But this month of fasting, Allah is not saying, we prescribed fasting for you so that you can get healthier. Also, it comes with that. Everything comes with that, but the main purpose is Taqwa. If you miss the main purpose, you do everything else is no good for nothing.
If you are only fasting for Taqwa, you are not concentrating on everything else, you win everything. That time Allah will send angels to you to give you food. You realize, after a few days, ‘oh, what is this desire that I have for food?’ You start thinking. You start saying this desire, a lot of it has to do with my eyes. If I don’t see something, I’m not going to get, what they say in today’s world, triggered. Trigger. Because everyone is holding a gun, to kill themselves and to kill other people. That’s why they say, ‘I’m triggered. I’m triggered. I’m triggered.’ But if you don’t see that, your nafs and your desire is not going to rise. Then you start understanding, oh, I must shield my eyes. Then you start understanding, ‘oh, it’s not only my eyes, but the pictures that my eyes see, but the pictures that I have in storage here (brain), that if I sit and I look at those pictures then those desires are going to come. But if I try to delete it and this is the month of scorching or burning, or deletion.’ Yes, it can be deleted. If you start doing that, you have more control. You become cleaner. You rejuvenate yourself. You regenerate yourself. Your spirit gets more full in this body instead of becoming really weak. But how are you going to do that when Ramazan is all about fulfilling your nafs again? Isn’t that the opposite of what Ramazan is supposed to make you do?
Yeah, of course you are going to celebrate a little bit. Of course you are going to cook something a little bit here and there. Of course you are going to share it with the people that you love. But like I said, that is not the main point. The main point is Taqwa. If you have Taqwa, you are looking for the nearness of Allah SWT, then you are going to run to be near Allah, you are going to run to be near to those ones that Allah is happy with and they are happy with Allah.
Ramazan is the time for you to understand yourself and the world. Ramazan is the time that you are going to understand what kind of sound your body is going to make. Is it going to make a low, muddy sound, because it is just your desire, or is it going to have a beautiful sound because your spirit is more free. Like what Hazreti Rumi is saying, ‘you make your belly to be empty, just like a drum, when you hit it, nice sound will come out. But if you make it to be full, very dirty sound is going to come.’ We are making ourselves to be free, and to be empty not only from the food but all the other things that we know that is going to dirty our relationship with Allah SWT. Hadiths e-Sharif is saying what? The most beloved things to be doing in this month is to say, ‘La ilaha ilallah.’ So where are all these Wahhabis that are saying ‘don’t make zikr’? Squarehead. Make as much La ilaha ilallah as possible. More better, understand the ilahs that we have and say La to that. Then our La ilaha ilallah will become more sincere, Insya’Allah. May Allah forgive me and bless you. Al-Fatiha. Amin. SelamAleykum warahmatullahi wabarakatu.
Sheykh Lokman Efendi Hz
Khalifah of SahibulSaif Shaykh Abdulkerim el Kibrisi (qs),
OSMANLI DERGAHI- New York
30 Shaban 1438
May 26, 2017