Friday, November 09, 2007
Yin and Yang of seeking Salvation in Islam.
Today, there are countless numbers of Muslims who try and seek salvation in Islam by way of involving themselves in various jama'ah's and tariqah's.
Such an endeavor is quite admirable and in fact enjoined in Islam as seeking knowledge and carrying out amal and ibadah is a Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad Sallalahu Alaihi Wassallam.
Nevertheless, Muslims need to be careful embarking on such a worthy quest for the path to salvation is riddled with a lot of spiritual potholes and traps which can lead one away from the true path of seeking the Blessings of Almighty Allah by falling into the sins of khurafat and bida'ah lawwamah!
As a Muslim who is well aware of the need for me to improve my Islamic knowledge and constantly keep the company of Islamic scholars and religious teachers who are righteous and steadfast in the path of Rasul Sallallahu Alaihi Wassallam, seeking the Redha and Mercy of Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala, I have come to understand that I am not free from falling back in my pursuit of 'ilm and am constantly facing a situation that is more alike a swinging pendulum between the light and darkness of this life.
Perfection of Iman is the objective of each and every Muslim who loves being a Muslim and cherishes the reality of the truth found in Islam revealed to us by Almighty Allah.
All rational Muslims come to realize that we who believe in Allah Azza Wa Jalla are constantly under threat of being waylaid by our nafs and unbridled lusts offered to us by this world.
Sometimes, even learned individuals and professionals fall prey to the designs and manipulations of those who are learned and well versed in Islamic knowledge yet turn into predators and opportunists who take advantage of the ignorance of such well established individuals but still are so gullible into believing such slick masters of deception and conniving tricksters who milk the foolish ones into contributing to their false teachings and at times even get abused physically, spiritually and mentally by such deviants.
We have all heard of various false teachings and deviant jamaah's and tariqat's especially here in Malaysia.
Some of these teachings and schools of religious knowledge started off sincerely but slowly but surely, temptations of earthly acknowledgment and advantages available to the teachers and masters made them fall prey to their own desires and commit breach of trust of their students and followers who are ignorant in such matters.
This dilemma is quite evident in the field of spiritual quests of those who seek the purifying of their souls and redemption of their mountains of sin against their fellow man and against the tenets and principles of Islam.
I call this situation the 'Yin and Yang' of seeking Salvation in Islam. Yin and Yang is a term describing the opposing states of any situation that is present in our life and perceptions of what this life presents to us as challenges in our daily existence.
It is a pity that many sincere Muslims who after realizing the errors of their ways and suffered the consequences of their sins, chose to repent and purify themselves by embarking on their own spiritual journeys to absolve themselves from their past mistakes, get embroiled instead in the manipulations of deviant religious teachers and masters of certain tariqats and jamaah's.
The root cause of such victimization is the lack of religious knowledge of the said individuals. It is ridiculous for them to say that they did not know. Everyone born as a Muslim here in Malaysia and is raised as such, is schooled in the basics of Islamic Knowledge and Aqeedah from the primary school levels right up to university levels.
Yet, despite all the basic teachings of Islamic knowledge and Fard' Ain, the building blocks of Islamic Practices, there are those who are stubborn and refuse to submit to the norms of social etiquette, common traditions and culture.
Such hardheadedness give birth to recalcitrant individuals who defy authority as a result of their being amongst their peers who sort of love being praised and cherished by those who accept them with all their faults and shortcomings.
Sometimes, such people have had unpleasant experiences with their parents or guardians who abused them by being too strict and severe in their upbringing and almost always were victims of harsh punishments for simple mistakes or at times even innocent of what they were unnecessarily punished for things they had never done or were wrongly accused of!
Instances like that give way to expressions of rebellion and manifest themselves in acts of going against the grain of accepted social customs and norms.
Ego plays a very big part in such acts of individuals who were only reacting naturally to counter such abuses with their own way of retaliation against those who harmed them when they were innocent and ignorant of what's right and what's deemed to be wrong.
At times these retaliation is carried out by going against the very rule of religion or social acceptance by those who harbor such dissatisfactions and simmering grudges against their abusers and vent it out against those whom they are able to inflict harm upon.
Sort of a tit for tat situation. There is a Malay saying ' Tak dapat tandok ; telinga di pulas!'.
Meaning : 'When one can't grasp the horn, one settles for twisting of the ears!'.
This parable carries the meaning of how when one can't satisfy one's wish to retaliate against the primary source of one's dissatisfaction, one opts to vent it out on any available secondary target!
This rebellious act is an inborn stubborn streak in human beings, no matter who or what they are?
Thus, this circumstances brings about an ongoing cycle of ignorants falling prey to opportunists who misuse or abuse their religious credentials and influences to milk the clueless out of their hard earned money and also take advantage of their female followers sexually in the name of their 'religious teachings'.
I don't need to name the jamaah's and tariqats in question for it is an open secret as to which jamaah or tariqat are identified as being deviant and against the true teachings of Islam.
You can find them out yourself by just typing deviant sects in the online search engines. I have a list of the teachings that JAKIM @ Jabatan Kemajuan Islam Malaysia categorize as such here.
One of those listed is the Tariqat Naqsyabandiah headed by Syaikh Nazim Adil Al-Haqqani Al-Qubrusi Al-Naqsyabandi which I joined way back in the late 80's.
I will write about my views of being a mureed of the world's largest network of tariqah and why I still regard myself as a student of this organization of those who seek the blessings of Almighty Allah through dhikr @ purification of the soul and uphold the sunnah of the blessed Final and Greatest Messenger of Ar Rahman, Muhammad Sallalahu Alaihi Wassallam, Rahmatulil Alamin.
Sure, I myself grimaced and distanced myself from those in the tariqat who refuse to listen to reason and go overboard in their hero worshiping of the syaikhs and fall prey to khurafat practices in their overwhelming zeal to be amongst those in the inner circle of the students who seek the syaikh's blessings and sharing of knowledge of a higher plane.
To me, none deserves to be worshiped but Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala. Period.
I do not worship any other being or entity but Allahu Akbar and Him Alone. I respect and admire the Holy Prophet Muhammad Sallalahu Alaihi Wassallam but I never go overboard in my amals and practices.
The Blessed Prophet forbade us to go overboard in anything what more in our religious practices as excessiveness in anything leads to kufur and maksiat.
Moderation is the key to attaining salvation but many of the ignorants tend to lose control and fail to pull up the brakes when it comes to going all out on the paths of amals and ibadah.
The end result is the emergence of deviant sects and groups who miss the forest for the trees, so to speak.
Insya Allah, I will elaborate on the subject more in my following posts.
Wabillahi Taufik Wal Hidayah. Wassalamualaikum Warahmatulillahi Ta'ala Wabarakatuh.