Reality of Salah (Daily Prayer)
and The Levels of the Heart
Life and Death in Each Day
From the Realities of Mawlana Shaykh Hisham Kabbani (Q) as taught by Shaykh Nurjan Mirahmadi.
A’udhu Billahi Minash Shaitanir Rajeem
Bismillahir Rahmanir Raheem
I seek refuge in Allah from Satan, the rejected one
In the Name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful
أَقِمِ الصَّلَاةَ لِدُلُوكِ الشَّمْسِ إِلَىٰ غَسَقِ اللَّيْلِ وَقُرْآنَ الْفَجْرِ ۖ إِنَّ قُرْآنَ الْفَجْرِ كَانَ مَشْهُودًا ﴿٧٨
17:78 – “Aqimi assalata lidulokish shamsi ila ghasaqi allayli wa Qurana alfajri, inna Qurana alfajri kana mashhoda.” (Surah Isra)
“Establish prayer at the decline of the sun [from its meridian] until the darkness of the night and [also] the Qur’an of dawn. Indeed, the recitation of dawn is ever witnessed.” (Holy Quran, the Night Journey 17:78)
Alhamdulillah (Praise be to Allah), that Allah (AJ) guided us to the love of Sayyidina Muhammad (saws) and into the hands of awliyaullah; and their uloom and their knowledges to take us towards the ma’rifa, the realities in which Allah (AJ) wants.
The Salah (daily prayers) are based on the reality of the levels of the Heart. That the qalb [First station of Heart] is the point of entry and the station of knowledges. Means that we go from the Qalb (First Station) to the Sir (Second Station) [Shaykh is pointing from left on his chest to the center of his chest] , and then it cuts down like an 8, it goes through the black, akhfa (Fifth Station). That black is like a black hole: the reality of the Fajr (morning prayer). It means you are going through that black to the sir-sir (Third Station), which is white, over to the green Khafa (Fourth Station). And from the green, it crosses back through the black, back to that yellow.
In the understanding of the salah and how it relates to the lata’if of the qalb (Levels of the Heart). It means that you start from Salatul Maghrib [1st Station – Qalb – Left of the chest], to Salatul ‘Isha [2nd station – Sir, to center of the chest], and then you pass the black, Salatul Fajr [5th Station – Akhfa] which is a state of death. That’s why the morning, Fajr prayer, before the sun rises is most powerful because that is the birth canal of the day. That with our Maghrib (Evening prayer) it starts and then becomes Salatul ‘Isha (Night Prayer) the night time, the darkest point of night, and then you pass the black part of Fajr (Morning Prayer).
1. Maghrib (Evening Prayer) – First Station of Qalb (Heart)
2. ‘Isha (Night Prayer) – Second Station of Sir (Secret)
5. Fajr (Morning Prayer) – Fifth Station of Akhfa (Most Hidden)
3. Zuhr (Noon Prayer) – Third Station of Sir Sir (Secret of Secret)
4. ‘Asr (Afternoon Prayer) – Fourth Station Khafa (Hidden)
We are Spiritual Beings Sent for Physical Experience
InshaAllah hat reality for us, we have said before many times, a reminder for myself, is that Allah (AJ) wants us to know that we come from the heavens. We are a spiritual creation sent upon earth for the physical experience. That Allah (AJ) and what Prophet (saws) brought for us is a fine line on how shaitan tries to fool insan (human being). Shaitan’s cleverness is like a line, that if he can’t pass that line on to people, they lose their reality and their understanding.
The Greatness of Allah ‘Azza wa Jal, greatness of the deen and the religion that Prophet (saws) brought was a completion for humanity to complete the understanding of themselves. They are in need of all the prophets, the understanding of all the messengers and the love that completes their reality.
1. Maghrib (Evening Prayer) at Station of Qalb (Heart)
– Return to your Origin – Heavens
Our Journey begins at Maghrib, at Night
What Allah (AJ) want to know is that our day starts from the night; our day starts from Salat al Maghrib. Salat al Maghrib is the beginning of our journey because Allah (AJ) wants a reminder within ourselves because as soon as we come to this reality, we begin to keep contemplating: why everything begins at night time? Why are all the celebrations the night of Isra wal-Mi’raj (Journey and Ascension), the Night of Power (Lailatul Qadr)? Means that every celebration in this way is based on the lail (night), why? Because Allah ‘Azza wa Jal, Prophet (saws) and the olul amr, who are teaching us from their realities, that Allah (AJ) want to know that the occasion is there [Shaykh points upwards to heavens], not on your dunya (material world).
In the world of light [in Heavens], in the akhirah and to you it is represented by darkness because it’s a dimension in which you can’t see. That you are coming from the oceans of the heavens, you are coming from the malakut.
إِنَّا لِلَّـهِ وَإِنَّا إِلَيْهِ رَاجِعُونَ ١٥٦…
12:156 – “Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi raji’oon.” (Surat al Baqara)
“Indeed we belong to Allah, and indeed to Him we will return.” (Quran 2:156)
And they are now just understanding that darkness doesn’t mean it’s void of anything. They found that the universe is actually tremendous amount of dark matter; there is a tremendous amount of darkness but there is something there that Allah (AJ) has just not illuminated.
Means then the reality for us is that: we are from the heavens. And that every occasion is starting from the heavens, the rahmah (mercy) from the heavens ‘wa Tanzila’, and it will come down upon your creation. So then remember: you come from the heavens and that you don’t come from this dunya (earth). Don’t forget your origin. So our day starts with that reality of Maghrib.
Life begins at the Womb and it Should be Counted
Means that we said before, shaytaan wants to fool and it’s like a string, that when you conceive a child, 9 months it’s alive within the womb. The birthday is when? As soon as the baby’s born. You bring a cake, say, ‘Happy birthday!’ They don’t say that; they wait til 1 year and then say ‘happy birthday’. Why? Why to wait; why shaitan want that wait? So that you think that baby not alive in the womb; that that doesn’t count as a life. You kill it if you want, astaghfirullah. Shaitan, he fools people to think, something so simple by waiting 1 year to say ‘happy birthday’ is a lie and they start everything with a lie.
Islam comes to say, ‘No, speak the truth. Live a life of truth. Don’t base your life off of falsehoods, from one false thing to another false thing’. Haqq al-Islam (truth of Islam) and what Prophet (saws) brought are realities. That no no, from the moment that that heart moves in, the conception begins, 120 days the soul, like a passenger comes into the heart of that creation; immediately the heart is beating, life is beginning.
Nine months is 36 weeks- 36 is what? The heart of Qur’an, YaSeen (saws) [36th chapter of Holy Quran]. Everything, Allah (AJ) says, ‘Everything is perfectly numbered,’ but who will understand? The people of tafakkur (contemplation).
3:190 – “Inna fee khalqis Samawati wal ardi wakhtilafil layli wan nahari, la ayatin li Olel albab. (190) ” (Surat Ali ‘Imran)
“Indeed, in the creation of the heavens and the earth and the alternation of the night and the day are signs for those People of understanding (People of the Door of Knowledge)”. (Holy Quran, 3:190)
الَّذِينَ يَذْكُرُونَ اللَّهَ قِيَامًا وَقُعُودًا وَعَلَى جُنُوبِهِمْ وَيَتَفَكَّرُونَ فِي خَلْقِ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ رَبَّنَا مَا خَلَقْتَ هَذَا بَاطِلًا سُبْحَانَكَ فَقِنَا عَذَابَ النَّارِ
3:191 – “Alladheena yadhkurona Allaha qiyaman wa qu’odan wa ‘ala junobihim, wa yatafakkarona fee khalqis Samawati wal ardi, Rabbana ma khalaqta hadha batilan subhanaka faqina ‘adhaban nar.” (Surat Ali ‘Imran)
“Who remember Allah while standing or sitting or [lying] on their sides and Contemplate the creation in the heavens and the earth, [saying], “Our Lord, You did not create this aimlessly; exalted are You [above such a thing]; then protect us from the punishment of the Fire.” (Holy Quran)
They slow down and they don’t let the fast life to fool them. Everything is a contemplation, tafakkur. Everything is to take a hisab (an account), ‘Ya Rabbi, 9 months and the power of 9 and the 9 sultans and all these realities; and this 9 times 4 becomes 36, the heart of Qur’an’. Means there must be a secret coming that making this creation to come into existence and it’s coming from paradise. The light is coming, the soul of the passenger coming from paradise, coming into the womb; then coming onto this earth and is a reminder for us that: this is a sacred existence.
So then our day begins at Maghrib. As soon as we go to Salat al-Maghrib, we pray Salat al-Maghrib and then we have the Janazat al Gha’ibeen, the unseen janazah, is a reminder for us that, it is not only for all those who passed away, because these are from the maqam al ihsaan (station of Perfection); these are not common people understanding. They want us to understand the salah and the reality of salah from the stations of perfection. From the station of perfection, the servant is entering back into their origin, because it’ll loop around and we catch back that understanding. That these (saints) are the people of hayat (ever living) in which they mastered a state of death. As soon as Salat al Maghrib comes, it’s a reminder for them.
Three Veils of Darkness – From Maghrib, to Isha to Fajr
خَلَقَكُم مِّن نَّفْسٍ وَاحِدَةٍ ثُمَّ جَعَلَ مِنْهَا زَوْجَهَا وَأَنزَلَ لَكُم مِّنَ الْأَنْعَامِ ثَمَانِيَةَ أَزْوَاجٍ ۚ يَخْلُقُكُمْ فِي بُطُونِ أُمَّهَاتِكُمْ خَلْقًا مِّن بَعْدِ خَلْقٍ فِي ظُلُمَاتٍ ثَلَاثٍ ۚ ذَٰلِكُمُ اللَّـهُ رَبُّكُمْ لَهُ الْمُلْكُ ۖ لَا إِلَـٰهَ إِلَّا هُوَ ۖ فَأَنَّىٰ تُصْرَفُونَ ﴿٦
39:6 – “Khalaqakum min nafsin wahidatin thumma ja’ala minha zawjaha, wa anzala lakum minal-an’aami samaani yata azwaaj; yakhuluqukum fee butooni ummahaatikum khalqam mim ba’di khalqin fee zulumaatin salaas; zaalikumul laahu Rabbukum lahul mulk; laaa ilaaha illaa Huwa fa annaa tusrafoon.” (Surat Az Zumar)
“He created you (all) from one soul: then from it, He created its mate, of like nature, and He produced for you from the grazing livestock eight mates. He creates you in the wombs of your mothers, creation after creation, within three darknesses. That is Allah , your Lord; to Him belongs dominion. There is no deity except Him, so how are you averted?…” (Holy Quran, The Troops 39:6)
Allah (AJ) described that the child is created in three veils of darkness. Means that the womb has three veils of darkness and this whole understanding is like a rahem, is like a womb. That you are going to pass Maghrib (evening prayer), Salat al-Isha (Night prayer) and Fajr (early morning) and then you are going to be born. Three veils of darkness; you are going to come from Maghrib, to the apex of the world of malakut (heavens), which is Salat al-Isha, and you are going to be descending through Salat al Fajr into your existence and manifestation.
Then for us, the understanding is that as soon as these servants enter into Salat al Maghrib, it’s a reminder for them, a state of death, annihilation. It’s a state in which the aakhirah [points upwards], their malakut, that they’re asking, ‘Ya Rabbi, that we are asking to leave this dunya and return us back: ‘wa ilaihi turja’oon‘;
فَسُبْحَانَ الَّذِي بِيَدِهِ مَلَكُوتُ كُلِّ شَيْءٍ وَإِلَيْهِ تُرْجَعُونَ ﴿٨٣
36:83 “Fasubhanal ladhee biyadihi Malakotu kulli shay in wa ilayhi turja’oon.” (Surat Yaseen)
“Therefore Glory be to Him in Whose hand is the [heavenly] dominion/ kingdom of all things, and to Him you will be returned..” (Holy Quran, 36:83)
That we come from a different reality. We’re asking to go back into that reality.’ That, for them, begins at Salat al-Maghrib. As soon as Allah (AJ) darkens the sky, “layli wan nahar“, that you are entering into a state of fana’ and annihilation.
تُوْلِجُ اللَّيْلَ فِي النَّهَارِ وَتُوْلِجُ النَهَارَ فِي اللَّيْلِ، وَتُخْرِجُ الْحَيَّ مِنَ الْمَيِّتِ وَتُخْرِجُ الْمَيِّتَ مِنَ الْحَيِّ، وَتَرْزُقُ مَنْ تَشَآءُ بِغَيْرِ حِسَابٍ .(سُوْرَةْ آَلِ عِمْرَان ٢٧:٣
3:27 – “Tulijul layla fin nahari, wa tuliju nahara fil layl, wa tukhrijul hayya minal mayyiti, wa tukhrijul mayyita minal hayy, wa tarzuqu man tasha’u bi ghayri hisab.” (Surat Ali ‘Imran)
“You make the night to enter into the day and You make the day to enter into the night, You bring the living out of the dead and You bring the dead out of the living, And You give provision to whom You will without measure [unlimited].” (Holy Quran, Family of Imran 3:27)
Darkness represents annihilation, that Allah (AJ) say, ‘You are coming to Me, but don’t manifest yourself. Don’t manifest from you, from what you acquired from dunya. Don’t manifest thinking that you’re anything. Begin your phase of death in which you are nothing, which you are nothing’. And that, ‘Ya Rabbi, “wa ilaihi turja’oon“; [points upwards] let me go back. Let me go back to my reality’.
Salatul Janazat al Ghaibeen at Maghrib – To Get rid of Four Enemies
Dunya (material world), Hawa (desires), Nafs (Ego), and shaitan (Satan)
Then they ask that: pray Salat al-Janazat al Gha’ibeen (Funeral Prayer for the Unseen) at the end of your Salat al-Maghrib – why? Because these 4 takbirats are for the four enemies that have destroyed insan (human being). Means the nafs (Ego), dunya (material world), hawa (desires) and shaitan (Satan) are 4 enemies against insan; and they have quartered the reality of the soul. The nafs, the wildness of the nafs, the hubb ad-dunya (love of material world), hubb al hawa and all the physical pleasures, and Shaitan (Satan), they have split the soul from what was whole. Because when the soul is whole, means its realities are reaching to it; it has a tremendous power. And shaytaan want to block all of that so that the soul cannot gain its power.
So the reality of their Salat al-Janazat al Gha’ibeen is that they see themselves on that janazat; that everyone should visualize themself on that table of janaza. That, ‘Ya Rabbi, it’s my funeral prayer, that everybody inshaAllah gathering tonight for my funeral prayer. And with every takbirat, ya Rabbi, destroy, destroy my dunya, my hubb ad dunya. Destroy my nafs (ego); destroy my hubb al hawa and my seeking of my physical pleasures and destroy the shaitan that is continuously is destroying everything I’m trying to do, ya Rabbi’.
Every Takbir Destroys one Enemy
Means every Salat al-Maghrib, they are entering into an intention that only Allah ‘Azza wa Jal’s, only Allah ‘Azza wa Jal’s– when they say ‘Allahu Akbar’, like a tremendous lightning and power that come to destroy everything. Al Muntaqim (the Avenger): Allah (AJ) says, ‘I’m going to avenge you. I’m going to destroy that shaitan and everything he thinks he is doing. I send upon you like a lightning, that destroy and finish everything wrong and bring you back into My Perfection. I will make your desire for dunya to be destroyed, your desire for your hawa, I destroy it. The nafs, I discipline in so it become your buraq and you ride upon it. And shaytaan will fear you and run away from you because you become from mukhliseen.’ And shaytaan has no business with the mukhlis (Sincere), but continuously chasing. Means they enter into an understanding that they are praying their janaza.
2. ‘Isha (Night Prayer) at Station of Sir (Secret)
Apex of Darkness – Symbol of Annihilation
By the time they reach, means from the qalb (First station of the Heart), then they start to move into the sir (Second Station). And these are the world of light in which the sir is symbolic of their salah and the reality of their salah. Means the qalb (heart) is the station of knowledges. They understood that to reach Allah ‘Azza wa Jal‘s Divinely Presence is that you have to enter a state of fana’; you have to annihilate. Why Allah (AJ) gives the symbol of the darkness is a symbol of annihilation: they don’t manifest anything. If you are coming to malakut, leave your manifestation behind.
Salatu ‘Isha to Fajr is the Door to Divinely Presence
Then Salat al-Isha, the Isha prayer, is the apex of malakut. It’s the height of darkness, when the night is the darkest. For those whom are making tafakkur (contemplation), Allah (AJ) is then describing, ‘The importance of your Salat al Isha to your Salat al-Fajr is going to be your door to My Divinely Presence’; because at the time of Salat al-Isha everything is darkened and the servant begins to remember the heavenly kingdom. All the Tanzil, all the blessings and the lights begin to manifest upon the servant. That’s why all of the holy nights are at night time. They’re taking the dress of all the heavenly manifestations; they come upon the heavens first and then the come towards dunya.
Means then the servant is entering into Salat al Isha in a state in which they are losing that existence. They are entering into a state of tranquillity and mawt and qab al-mawt (dead before dead); and they understood their phase of death because they’re asking to return back to Allah ‘Azza wa Jal. As soon as they enter back into Salat al-Isha, and Salat al-Isha is finishing, they are entering in now to Salat al-Tahajjud.
Levels are the Heart are Phases of the Najm (Star)
These are important points of energy, that from Salat al Isha, they pass through that black point, that black circle [5th Station of Akhfa (Most Hidden)] because these are the phases of a sun, these are the najm. When Prophet (saws) described, ‘My Sahabi, they are a stars; any one of them you follow.’
أَصْحَابِيْ كَالنُّجُـــومْ بِأَيْهِمْ اَقْتَدَيْتِمْ اَهْتَدَيْتِمْ
“Ashabi kan Nujoom, bi ayyihim aqta daytum ahta daytum.”
“My companions are like stars. Follow any one of them and you will be guided.” Prophet Muhammad (saws)
This is a phase of the stars, that you have from this star (First Station, Qalb – Sun) to thisstar [Second Station, Sir – Red giant) to the white star [Third Station, Sir Sir – White dwarf), to the Pulsar [Fourth Station, Khafa] and then the center [Fifth Station – Akhfa] being like a black hole, which its power is so immense, that it absorbs everything; that nothing escapes the black hole. This is from the reality of Sayyidina Muhammad (saws).
Means Allah (AJ) gave such a dress and such a majesty to Prophet (saws). That means when the servant is praying from Salat al-Isha and moving to Salat al-Fajr, what Allah (AJ) want from them is then: wake up, wake up and pray your Salat al-Tahajjud. Means this whole phase from Salat al-Isha to Salat al-Fajr [Shaykh points at Second Station Sir to 5th Station Akhfa] is the womb of the reality.
5. Fajr (Mornign Prayer) at Station of Akhfa (Most Hidden)
– You are being Born in Fajr
That every day has a life and every day has a death. Means from the time of Maghrib, that life is coming. The reality of its life is coming, Salat al Isha is dressing it, Salat al-Fajr is now the womb; from Salat al-Fajr it comes out and now has an existence. You manifest at the Salat al-Fajr (morning prayer) and you come into existence again. By night time you died. They go through the phase of death, they move through that, that channel of light and realities.
You come through the black of Fajr (morning prayer), it shows you its importance because Fajr is a state of annihilation; that something is going to be born, something is going to be brought to life and resurrected. That’s why the Fajr is so powerful, that all the lights that the servant and those servants are taking is that they annihilate themselves in this phase of darkness. They lose their importance, they enter into their Salat al-Fajr and Allah (AJ) dresses them from the realities of their paradise.
Only in Salatul Fajr, You take from Paradise Realities & Knowledge
That’s why we said in Surat al-Qadr: that is the reality, Salat al-Fajr is the reality of, “Salamun hiya hatta matla al Fajr..”
“Peace it is until the emergence of dawn. (Holy Quran, The Power)
The ‘Salamun‘ means Allah (AJ) is dressing them from that reality, blessing them all the way til their Fajr. Means that, how to take the dress of your paradise reality is only through Salat al-Fajr; how to take the knowledges through your paradise reality is through Salat al-Fajr. As soon as they pray their Salat al-Fajr, Allah (AJ) dressing the soul with all of its paradise realities.
The centre of that lataif has to do with the reality of Fajr. The Fajr (morning prayer) means the birth canal of this life is now going to be born. As soon as the next light coming out, there’s going to be the light of the sun rising. So that white point at that time would be the apex of the sun, which will be Salatul Zuhr.You come through the black of Fajr, it shows you its importance because Fajr is a state of annihilation; that something is going to be born, something is going to be brought to life and resurrected.
3. Zuhr (Noon Prayer) at Station of Sir Sir (Secret of Secret) –
– Symbolic of our Manifestation and Material world
As soon as they leave that Salat al-Fajr, then the next salah that coming is Salat al-Zuhr. Zuhr is actually like a zuhur (appearance); it’s their manifestation. They understood that these are Rijalullah (Men of God), where Allah (AJ) described, ‘Not trade nor business distracts them from the remembrance of Allah ‘Azza wa Jal’.
رِجَالٌ لَّا تُلْهِيهِمْ تِجَارَةٌ وَلَا بَيْعٌ عَن ذِكْرِ اللَّـهِ وَإِقَامِ الصَّلَاةِ وَإِيتَاءِ الزَّكَاةِ ۙ يَخَافُونَ يَوْمًا تَتَقَلَّبُ فِيهِ الْقُلُوبُ وَالْأَبْصَارُ ﴿٣٧
24:37 – “Rijalun la tulheehim tijaratun wa la bay’un ‘an Dhikrillahi wa iqamis Salati wa eetayiz Zakati, yakhafona yawman tataqallabu feehi alqulobu wal absar.” (Surah an Nur)
“By men of God (Rijal) whom neither business/commerce nor sale distracts (them) from the remembrance of Allah and performance of prayer and giving of regular Charity. Their (only) fear is for a Day in which the hearts and eyes will be transformed/turn about (in a world wholly new).” (Holy Quran, The Light)
There is Life and Death in Every Day
Means they understood that in every moment, there is a life and death; and in every day, there is a life and death. They passed that phase of death to be dressed by their paradise realities. As soon as the day comes up, they are dressed with the reality of that day. They go all the way to Salat al-Zuhr (noon prayer). The Salat al-Zuhr is their zuhur, their manifestation.
Then what Prophet (saws) described is the most difficult prayer for the believer, is the Zuhr prayer because he is busy with business and work. Why? Because it’s symbolic of our manifestation and our love for dunya. The shaitan wants to come and take the servant to make them think that they’re going to live in this dunya forever, and forgetting that, no, death is coming! Death may come in 5 minutes and in 50 years.
But that servant from maqam al ihsaan is understanding that, ‘Ya Rabbi, this is my time of manifestation that I pray my Salat al-Zuhr (noon prayer) as to not be conquered by the dunya.’ It’s important and it’s tremendously important to show the nafs that, ‘No, I’m not conquered by dunya‘. And that’s the one where everyone wants an excuse to get out of Salat al Zuhr: They ask ‘Can I shorten it? Can I pray in my car? Can I do anything?’ because of the busy-ness of dunya.
Every Day has a New Tajali and Manifestation
So then how to conquer that reality is what they are teaching us, because when you understand the reality, it opens an understanding. Fajr is not just a time that you are praying in the dark and it’s dark and everyone’s asleep; you’re coming through a birth canal, you are being born that day. And Allah (AJ) described, ‘Every day, I have a new tajali‘ (manifestation). Means the one who catches that tajali, as if he is born new that day, not the same tajalli that Allah (AJ) dressed him with yesterday. As soon as he enters into that Fajr, as soon as he prays his Salat al-Fajr, as soon as he comes out, is as if he’s been born new that day and dressed with all of its blessing.
Then whatever Allah (AJ) opening for that servant, He is describing that, ‘My Rijalullah, no matter business or trade- because all of them big merchants, all of them big traders- they ae not people who sit on carpet and do nothing- so all of My rijanullah, not business nor trade divert them from remembrance of Allah ‘Azza wa Jal.’ Means they pray that Salat al-Zuhr to make sure that they are good with Allah (AJ). That, ‘Ya Rabbi, we are from malakut [points upwards] and we understood and servants of the malakut; and we are your servants also in the mulk,’ because bayna (between) Isha and Zuhr is from malakut and the mulk [gestures from top to bottom]. The prayer of mulk is your zuhur, is your manifestation of Salat al-Zuhr.
Live Day by Day – Our Life is Between Zuhur and ‘Asr Prayer
Then they understood that in this mulk: ‘I have to submit to Allah ‘Azza wa Jal, so my Salat al-Zuhr is important and my life is bayna Zuhr wa al ‘Asr. Again I’m going to die between Zuhr and ‘Asr (afternoon). So that’s all our manifestation ’cause you take, we take life as one day. Don’t make too many big plans. You don’t know if you have 50 days or 5 years, 50 years. We say, ‘Ya Rabbi, we live day by day. My manifestation, my existence and I put all my importance upon myself- it’s only from Zuhr to ‘Asr’. You are only manifesting from Salat al-Zuhr to Salat al-‘Asr.
Then Zuhr is the apex of the day. So the afternoon is the apex of your life. From the point of Zuhr, now that day is dying.
4. ‘Asr (Afternoon Prayer) at Station of Khafa (Hidden) –
– The State of Decend – You are Dying every day
Then by the Salatul ‘Asr, the midday prayer around 3:30pm or 4 o’clock, depending upon which areas you live in, it’s a state in remembrance for now the death of that day.
So they understood: the mulk of this dunya is all fading until you reach Salat al-‘Asr, and then Allah (AJ) give you even a surah: Surat al-‘Asr.
وَالْعَصْرِ ﴿١﴾ إِنَّ الْإِنسَانَ لَفِي خُسْرٍ ﴿٢
103:1-2 “Wal ’Asr.(1) Innal insaana lafee khusr.(2) ” (Surat al ‘Asr)
“By al ‘Asr (the time)! (1) Verily, Mankind is in loss. (2)” (The Declining Day, 103:1-3)
Allah (AJ) describes in that surat that, “inal insan lafi khusr“; you are dying. You are dying, don’t think you have too much time. That becomes the understanding that you have to meditate; and it doesn’t make sense on the tongue, that you actually are born dying, everything about you, from the time Allah gave you life because He’s describing it. He’s describing in Surat al-‘Asr that you are in a state of descent. You are not growing like a tree where, ‘I brought you here, you are going to live for 1000 years. From the moment you came and I gave you life, you are dying.’ Now you’re going to die in 1 day, 50 days, 500 days, 50 000 days- you are going.
And everything within you, as it’s growing, it’s also dying or all your cells, there’s 3 million cells a day die within the body out of your 4 trillion cells. Means we are in a continuous state of where we think we’re alive and everything within us also in a state of death. And Allah ‘Azza wa Jal, for the servants whom trying to reach their reality, ‘Ya Rabbi, that we’re leaving this mulk of dunya and we entered into ‘Asr’; and again this day is entering into its Qiyamah. Beause how are you supposed to prepare for Qiyamah (judgemnt day) – 50 years from now? No! Every day has a Qiyamah; every day has a death. As soon as you enter into it, what Allah ‘Azza wa Jal, say? “Wa tawaa saw bil-haqq wa tawaa saw bil-sabr”;
إِلَّا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ وَتَوَاصَوْا بِالْحَقِّ وَتَوَاصَوْا بِالصَّبْرِ ٣
103:3 “Illal ladheena aamano wa ‘amilos saalihaati, wa tawasaw bil haqqi wa tawasaw bis Sabr.(3) ” (Surat al ‘Asr)
“Except for those who have believed and done righteous deeds and advised each other to truth and advised each other to patience. ” (The Declining Day, 103:3)
That you are going to enter into this phase of death; your success from your Salat al-‘Asr back to your Maghrib [Shaykh gestures from 4th Station of Khafa to top Firstr Station of Qalb] means you are dying now. This phase of life of yours, if you truly understood just 1 day of it. That as soon as you enter into Salat al-‘Asr, all your plans mean nothing. All your hopes mean nothing. Means that you enter into yourself that, ‘Ya Rabbi, whatever I planned, I could be going,’ and that everything is leaving.
This Path of Haq (Truth) is Based on Sabr (Patience)
Then Allah (AJ) is reminding then, ‘This path of haqq is based on sabr– have patience’; that everything in your life is going to be based on sabr. The only way to be dressed by sifat al-sabr, because when Allah (AJ) dressed those ibadullah from sifat al-Sabr (attribute of Patience). They have been dressed from all the attributes, because the last attribute is the most difficult. All the other attributes is “tawa saw bil haqq“: Allah dress you, dress you, dress but not complete until you’ve been dressed by sabr, that if you’re going to be on a path of haqq, it has to be based on patience.
The patience comes and awliya come and teach you that you are dying, you’re dying; from the time you have life, you are truly actually dying. And this is the oxymoron of life, that we think we have forever. Allah (AJ) says, ‘If you really observe yourself, you are actually going down. I gave you a certain amount of breaths- don’t waste them. Don’t run too much and exercise too much and you lose all your breath. I gave you numbered amount of breath, numbered amount of heart beats, that everything is perfectly numbered.
وَأَحْصَىٰ كُلَّ شَيْءٍ عَدَدًا ٢٨
72:28 – “… wa ahsa kulla shay in ‘adada. ” (Surat al Jinn)
“… has enumerated all things in number. ” (The Jinn 72:2)
Fajr (Morning) is the Rising of Life, and
‘Asr (Afternoon) is the Setting of Life
That’s why then the two most powerful prayers are going to be the Fajr and ‘Asr. Fajr because the rising of light, the rising of life, and between ‘Asr and Maghrib, because now that’s the setting of life, the setting of that power.
Don’t Sleep between Asr and Maghrib
These realities; [Shaykh points at 4th Station of Khafa] meansAllah (AJ) says, ‘why don’t you look to My Creation to understand the reality better?’ Then we look to the birds because they represent angelic realities. Birds are singing at what 2 times? your ‘Asr is a state of death; you are entering in actual energy of death. That’s why Prophet (saws) said, ‘Don’t sleep between ‘Asr and Maghrib; you may go majnoon (insane).’ Why? There is an energy being changed, a life force means a life is going and a tajalli of Qiyamah (Judgement Day), tajalli of death and mawt is coming.
Birds Sing in time of Salatul Fajr and ‘Asr
Allah (AJ) says, ‘why don’t you look to My Creation to understand the reality better?’ Then we look to the birds because they represent angelic realities. Birds are singing at what 2 times?
Fajr and Asr are the two times in which the birds and the animals come out and they praise the Divine. They praise at the rising, thanking the Divine for this grace and the beauty of life and the existence that they have. Then they are praising as Maghrib is coming, asking for the protection of what darkness brings of difficulty.
Pray for your Protection at Night
عن جندب بن عبدالله رضي الله عنه قال : قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم : ( مَن صَلَّى الصُّبحَ فَهُوَ فِي ذِمَّةِ اللَّهِ ، فَلا يَطلُبَنَّكُمُ اللَّهُ مِن ذِمَّتِهِ بِشَيْءٍ فَيُدرِكَهُ فَيَكُبَّهُ فِي نَارِ جَهَنَّمَ ) .[روى مسلم (657)]
Qala Rasullullah (saws) “Man Salla as Subha fa huwa fi dhimmatillahi, fala yatlubannakum ullahu min dhimmatihi bi shayin,…” (Rawayi Muslim)
Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) said: “Whoever prays Fajr is under the protection of Allah, so do not fall short with regard to the rights of Allah,…” [Narrated by Muslim]
When Birds sing at Fajr, it is very beautific, when you hear it. Sayyidina Abu Bakr as-Siddiq said, ‘You already missed your Fajr. The birds did it before you’. When you hear the birds singing at Fajr, they are praising Allah (AJ) with a beautific praise- why? To receive these tajallis [points to Fajr at 5th Station of Akhfa] They want this manifestation of light beause they understood that, ‘By Maghrib we may be dead, something’s going to eat us; we want the manifestation of this day’; and they praise with a beautific praise.
Then go to the same birds at Salat al-‘Asr. And Burnaby [British Columbia, Canada], on the freeway, there is at least 10 million birds on that exit, near the Willingdon, near BCIT (Biritish Coumbia Institute of Technology), right there, 10, 000! Wherever anybody is on the internet and wherever they have birds, you hear their zikr of Maghrib is not same praising as it is at Fajr. As a result of that tajalli of death that is coming, the birds, when they recite at Maghrib, it`s not a very pleasant sound. It’s more like [Shaykh makes a crowing sound]. They are begging Allah (AJ) to be protected. They are begging Allah (AJ) that their death is coming; many will die at night and some will survive for the day. This is when they have hardship.
Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) said, “A group of angels stay with you at night and (another group of) angels by daytime, and both groups gather at the time of the ‘Asr and Fajr prayers. Then those angels who have stayed with you overnight, ascend and Allah asks them about you —- and He knows everything about you. ‘In what state did you leave My slaves?’ The angels reply, ‘When we left them, they were praying, and when we reached them they were praying.’ ” [Sahih Bukhari, Book 97, Hadith 56]
The same Word Zulumat is for Darkness and Oppression
When the darkness comes, difficulty comes. Darkness by itself is a state of difficulty because you don’t have the protection, you don’t have the healing, you don’t have the power of lights that are shining. So then all of the creatures come out asking God for protection through the darkness and to survive to the light, until the light rises again, InshaAllah.
Allah (AJ) even described: night time is Zhulumat, is every oppression. Means you are, [Shakh poinst at 4th Staiton of Khafa, and moves to 5th Station of Akhfa] the servant is entering into a state of oppression as they are dying in that day. And that’s why you need “tawaa saw bil-haqq wa tawaa saw bil-sabr”,
That you were an oppressor to yourself that whole day, thinking that you are existing forever. ‘My Salat al-‘Asr is a reminder for you: no, this day that you thought is going forever is just now in a phase of death’; and begin to see how everything is going and darkness is coming. And all the plants and the beautiful daylight have gone and now Zhulumat (darkness) has now again descended upon that servant.
So means it’s a conscious meditation and tafakkur of the salah, that, ‘Ya Rabbi,’ that, ‘ Salat al-‘Asr coming and I’m entering now back into a phase of death where everything slows down, that all the running of dunya has, is, has put itself down and I’m entering back into that phase. And then my day and my reality of the heavens again begins at Maghrib‘.
The Two Powerful Stations are Akhfa (Most Hidden) and Khafa (Hidden)
So the two powerful points [Shaykh points at 4th Station Akhfa and Center point, 5th Station Akhfa] where the birds are singing is Salat al-Fajr because they are coming through this Fajr, which is actually courage, is your salvation. With your courage and your zuhur, you are manifesting. From the time you manifest, you are only living til ‘Asr and you are dead by ‘Asr. Then from ‘Asr, it’s going to pass a death point [5th station – |Akhfa], to the Maghrib [1st Station – Qalb], which is the setting of the sun
Means everything is going; the darkness has come again and from ‘Asr, you are going back into that ocean of reality because you are passing the akhfa tajalli. Each of these, these names have a tremendous reality that: that Fajr and that ‘Asr is passing the akhfa reality. The akhfa reality is a black hole in which it takes everything in and nothing remains; and this is the annihilation. That is the station of annihilation in which the servant to be dressed by annihilation. And these are the servants of mawt wa qabl al mawt.
Subhana rabbika rabbal ‘izzati ‘amma yasifoon, wa Salamun ‘alal mursaleen, wal hamdulillahi rabbil ‘aalameen. Bi hurmati Muhammad al-Mustafa wa bi sirri surat al-Fatiha
[Special thanks to sister Hafsa and sister Saira for their help with transcribing this suhbah.]
Related Articles by Mawlana Shaykh Nurjan Mirahmadi:
- Levels of the Heart – Lataiful Qalb – Main page
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