Monday, 11 June 2007

On a coffee break?

An amusing anecdote which I thought I'll share with you, if only for it's general interest:

Once a person asked his Shaykh, are there differences between the styles of pious shuyukh? He said well find out. Go to that mosque and three of the pious are seated there - slap each one of them. So he went and gave the first one of his best, the dervish slapped him back with equal vigour, and sat down. The second ignored him completely and the third started massaging his hand saying oh I hope you did not hurt yourself in the process.

Another good story but not one that you should try at home!:

One saint used be overcome with 'haal' a lot. Haal is when the saalik erupts in emotion and in this condition may utter words of a dubious nature (who can forget Bistaami and his 'glory be to me' and al-Hallaj 'ana al Haqq'). So this saint also used to be overcome from his love from time to time and his mureeds became quite alarmed at the strange comments he would make in this state. They told their Shaykh that this is rather unsavoury and he should stop lest he be sinning. (Maulana Thanvi, at this point, said that this is how mureeds should be, ever-vigilant against anything that contravenes shari'ah, be it even from their Shaykh.) The Shaykh answered 'Very well, next time it happens and I say something like that, set upon me with your swords' and so they got ready. After a while, the same haal came upon him and the Shaykh uttered the same words, at which each mureed lunged upon him. They were shocked to see that, by the will of Allah, the swords had no effect on their Shaykh and they sat down rather dazed. The Shaykh explained to them in spite of giving the command for his death, the words still came out which shows that he could not control the love that envelopes him in that time and hence Allah saved him.

(Taken from various speeches of Hazrat Ashraf Ali Thanvi)

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