Question: I have a question in regards to the concept of nothingness. How can we accept that we are nothing yet still have confidence? I have been feeling that I am unable to do anything based on feeling nothing.
Oh, that’s wrong. That’s not nothing. You’re so full of yourself, that’s why you are not doing anything. Because number one, nothingness is not a concept. And when we talk about nothing, and specifically because you say that, I’m not going to look at any philosopher, I’m not going to look at any saint, even, speaking about nothingness, I’m going to look at what Sheykh Mevlana and Sheykh Effendi are saying. To keep that streamlined. Otherwise, you mix in everything. We only have one Sheykh, we don’t have a hundred. So Sheykh Mevlana had said ‘Our aim is to be nothing,’ Correct? What is the full quotation? ‘As long as you think you are something, your ego is going to fool you.’ What does that nothing mean?
It’s not a concept. That is a reality. What does that nothing mean, in that very high level that Sultanul Evliya is talking like that, it means completely you are in submission to Allah SWT. Allah SWT is One, okay? And you are in submission. So that is the meaning. It doesn’t mean now Christian concept of nothing, or Buddhist concept of nothing, or atheist concept of nothing, or physics concept of nothing, or nothing. Not that. We are looking at what our Grandsheykhs are saying about that. You become a servant. That time, it is not sitting down, ‘I’m nothing, I’m nothing,’ how, what the heck is that also? It’s not that. How you want to be, slowly, slowly, slowly to become to submission, find a Sheykh. That Sheykh is going to slowly teach you how to submit. He’s not going to say ‘now,’ like in the military, ‘now you are literally nothing. Shave your head, no identity, put on the same clothes, live in the same place, eat the same food,’ no, it’s not that also. It is not.
So the Sheykh is going to take you and first, people are coming, and the Sheykh is not there also to say ‘okay, I’m going to make everyone to be nothing.’ Our Sheykh is saying ‘we are trying to be servants. We want to be servants.’ The highest title is to be a servant. All the names of the Prophet (AS), there’s not one that he’s called the Master of Nothing. And out of all the names, he’s saying ‘I like Abdullah.’ Abdullah, the servant of Allah. So our Prophet (AS) is the Holy Prophet (AS). He’s not any philosopher, not any author, not any person who thinks he can write about Sufism suddenly, forty rules of love, SubhanAllah, MashaAllah, they’re taking that from so many other things and they are putting things, and then all the Muslims world is chasing after them, because everyone wants Starbucks version anyway. It’s become like that. Not even Disney, Starbucks version, because at least Disney is making a Muslim movie. You didn’t know that? Sometimes these sheytans they are very smart, they know that they can have more power if they do one good. You understand? They’re releasing a new movie, this Muslim American family that they’re celebrating Eid, but it’s not a holiday, and this little girl is rallying a movement so it becomes recognized where she lives. I don’t see any king, any Alim, any Muslim president, any Sheykh, saying ‘we must open the Masjids.’ Trump is saying that. And he’s talking about religion, he didn’t have to. He didn’t have to, because it’s not as if the next day or next two days it’s going to be Passover or Christmas, or Easter. It’s Memorial day. It’s Memorial day. He could’ve said something else. He could’ve said ‘we must remember,’ but he said specifically for religion. What he said, that is good. Everything else he said before and after, we’re not interested. We’ve already said what it is and it’s clear to everyone. But what they say, call a spade a spade. That is what he’s saying. That’s what I’m seeing. Sometimes they know when they do something good, they get more power, just like Firaun. Just like Firaun. Maybe he is not a Namrud. Firaun still acknowledges Allah. He’s just very stubborn, he thinks so big of himself. But he didn’t fool himself. Namrud has completely fooled himself. He’s fooled himself, he becomes nothing, that Allah is not even mentioning his name in the Quran, saying always ‘that one, that one.’
So now, once you are in training under a Sheykh, he will give you that confidence to do something that is for the sake of Allah. It is not confidence for yourself also. It is doing something, you know it is Haqq and it is not you patting yourself on the back to be confident, knowing that Allah and His Prophet loves it. Even when you yourself you don’t like it, and people around you, they are saying ‘why are you doing this?’ But you are holding on strongly and you know Allah and His Prophet loves this and this is what I’m supposed to do right now.’ Even if it’s something small like ‘I’m supposed to sit in a Muslim way, not just to stick out my feet,’ or ‘I’m going to wear sunnat clothes, and I’m not going to just say so what, this is part of my identity, to wear this kind of non-sunnat clothes.’ So that time, when you get that strength from that faith, you will become confident. And you’re not going to be sitting, depressed and thinking you’re trying to be nothing. No, you’re going to fight against your ego. Your ego is the one, your nafs is the one that is saying ‘I am a lord.’ Your spirit is the one who says ‘I am a servant.’ Who are they saying this to? Allah Jalla wa Ala.
So you want to be a servant? You have to go against to your ego. You want to be a servant, your spirit has to be more powerful than the nafs. You want to be a servant, you have to break that idol. Slowly, insyaAllah. They are not expecting us, they are not making us to be Insan e-Kamils. Allah knows that we cannot, not in a million years, but they want us to at least make some steps. Okay, you can make one step? Very good, we take ten steps. But our Sheykh is saying ‘okay, you can make one step. Why are you not making two? You can make two steps. Why you cannot make three? You can make three. Why not make another one? Make another one, make another one.’ Because he wants us to go higher and higher. But never forget, it’s still one, two, three steps that we are doing. Wa minallahu taufiq, Al Fatiha. Amin. Selam Aleykum.
Sheykh Lokman Efendi Hz
Khalifah of SahibulSaif Shaykh Abdulkerim el Kibrisi (qs),
Osmanli Dergah, New York
6 Shawwal 1441
May 28, 2020