Step By Step Illustration

on Islamic Meditation/Muraqabah/Tafakkur

 تَفَكُرْ سَاعَةٍ خَيْرٌ مِنْ عِبَادَةِ سَبْعِينْ سَنَةً
Tafakkur sa’atin khayrun min ‘ibaadati saba’in sanatin”
Reflective thinking for one hour is better than 70 years of supererogatory worship.”
Prophet Muhammad (saw)

From the Realities of Mawlana Shaykh Hisham as Taught by Shaykh As Sayed Nurjan Mirahmadi

All Illustrations by SALIM

Many of these ancient Islamic masters’ writings were only in Arabic and used terms that were complex and unfamiliar to Western people. Such as Taffakur, Tadhakkur, Muraqaba, Muhasabah, Insan Kamel; by masters such as Imam Gazalli, Ibn Arabi, Hadrat Abdul Qadir a Gilani all the Saints of the Naqshbandi Sufi Way. This could not be taught without a Master like Shaykh Hisham Kabbani.

أَطِيعُواللَّه وَأَطِيعُوٱلرَّسُولَ وَأُوْلِي الْأَمْرِ مِنْكُمْ…
“Ati’ullahu wa Ati’ur Rasol, wa Olel amri minkum.”

“…Obey God, obey the Prophet (s) and obey those charged with authority over you.” (Quran 4:59)

Preparation for the Islamic Meditation:

  • 3 times – Recite Kalimatu Shahadah (Faith’s testimony):
    [Ashhadu an la ilaha illallah, wa ashhadu anna Muhammadan ‘Abduhu wa Rasulu
    I bear witness that there is none worthy of worship except Allah, and I bear witness that Muhammad is His servant and Messenger.]
  • 70 Times –Istighfar (ask for forgiveness)
    [Astaghfirullah al Azheem wa atubu ilayh]
  • 3 Times – Recite Surat al Ikhlas [Chapter 112 of Holy Quran]
    [Qul huwa Allahu ahad. Allahus Samad. Lam yalid wa lam yoolad. Wa lam yakun lahu kufuwan ahad.]
  • Recite Surat al Fatiha [First Chapter of Quran]
  • Minimum 200x seeking support and presence of Mawlana Shaykh (Q):
    “Madad ya Sayyidi, Madadul Haq, Ya Mawlana  ”
    Repeating Dhikr

 Step 1 – Feel the Presence

  • Feel  yourself in presence of the Shaykh
  • Give your greetings 
  • Eyes closed
  • See through Eyes of the Heart -Don’t look for a face, just his Aura/Spirituality Converse with the Shaykh, building your relationship with the reality of the Shaykh.


وَاعْتَصِمُوا بِحَبْلِ اللَّـهِ جَمِيعًا وَلَا تَفَرَّ‌قُوا
“Wa’tasimo bi hablillahi jami’an wa la tafarraqo.”

Hold tight to the rope of God and do not separate.” (Quran 3:103)

Step 2 – Make the Connection

  • Eyes Shut ask for Permission to connect his light to your heart and your light to his heart.
  • Imagine a two way connection and then recite above zikr or awrad 

Initially the mureed may begin the practice of Islamic Meditation/Muraqabah for short intervals of 5 to 15 minutes, and gradually work towards longer sessions extending even for hours at a time. The important point is that one maintain a consistent practice to obtain benefit. It is manifold better and wiser to keep to a small amount daily than to be sporadic in one’s discipline and practice. A small amount of effort done consistently will result in tremendous progress in even a short amount of time. Once a Day.

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا اتَّقُوا اللَّـهَ وَكُونُوا مَعَ الصَّادِقِينَ ١١٩
“O ye who believe, be conscious of  God and keep the company with those who are truthful.” (Quran 9:119)

When someone sits for Islamic Meditation/Muraqaba and closes the eyes, he focuses his mind on one single point.

The point in this case is usually the concept of his spiritual mentor. That is, he focuses all his witnessing abilities concentrating in thinking about his spiritual teacher, in order to get the image of his mentor on the mental screen, as long as he remains in the state of Meditation. The properties, characteristics, and potentialities related to an image also transfer on the screen of the mind when the image is formed on the mental screen and the mind perceives them accordingly.

For instance, a person is looking at fire. When the image of fire transfers on the mental screen, the warmth and heat of the fire is perceived by the mind. A person who is present in a garden enjoys the freshness and coolness of trees and plants present in the garden to create their image on his mental screen. Similarly when image of the spiritual mentor transfers on the screen of mind, the Presented Knowledge which is operative in the spiritual teacher, also transfers with it and the mind of the student gradually assimilates the same.

From Naqshbandi teachings:

بعض العارقين :ادخل الشيخ في قلبك و أسكنه فثه و لا تخرجه حتي تصير عارفا بسببه .

“Some of the wise men said…” and then Shaykh writes “let the Shaykh enter your heart.” Here he said adkhil ادخل which in Arabic means “enter” so the full passage is: “Let the Shaykh enter your heart and let him inhabit your heart and do not let the Shaykh leave your heart until you become a knowledgeable person.” 

So this picture is depicting the mureed entering the Shaykh into his heart. This is clear, as the book didn’t say “make the heart of the Shaykh enter your heart. “ Shaykh clearly wrote: “let the Shaykh enter your heart.”

Then question then comes: how do you cause the Shaykh to enter in your heart? Wa askinhu feeh و اسكن فيه . Which “Means inhabit inside it.” That also means“ make the Shaykh’s house in your heart.” It means, in English:

“Make yourself one with your Shaykh and do not let him out until you become a wise man.”

Then Shaykh said, in line 15: “ you must be fani, annihilated, in your shaykh.” This means you become one with the shaykh. That means no more irada, no will. You are leaving your will and supplanting it with the Will of the Shaykh. This is what Shaykh is describing on love stated that ash Shaykh Sirr as Saqati said “la tasahu‘l mahabat” love is not authentic between two until one says to the other “ma anta illa ana – You are me and I am you.” You cannot be in love until you say to the other “We are one. You are me and I am you.“ So this is what His Eminence Shaykh has said that is represented in that picture. This picture is a pictorial representation of what Shaykh described.]

Everyone must try within the rules which exist in their religion, to praise the Lord first, in the way the prophets taught us. We can then sit in a silent place, preferably in the dark, cover ourselves and withdraw from everything around us. We should not hear or feel anything, only think that we are one within the existence of the Lord Almighty Allah in the Divine Presence.

Make Ghusul or Wudu and put on clean clothes if possible. Pray two Rak’ats of ‘Tahiyatu’l Wudu’. Then sit down in a silent private place and face the Qiblah. Close your eyes and try to stop all movements, thinking and wishing. Imagine yourself in the presence of your Shaykh and him sitting in front of you. For that purpose you can try to remember a moment you had with the Shaykh which was pleasant or impressive to you, or use a picture of him to remember his face. Connect with him through your heart, turning in love towards him.]

Step 3: Sitting Position

  • Positioning Kneeling if possible
     Be Conscious of Grounding your energy,
  • if possible sit on knees,
  • Eyes Closed,
  • Hand position, conscious of the Thumb for heart beat
  • Mouth closed, Tongue on the pallet of mouth
  • Breathing controlled ,
  • Ears listening to Quran, Salawat or Mellow sounds,
  • Room Dark

Islamic Meditation Muraqaba, thinking about the spiritual mentor, an attempt to concentrate and focus our thoughts on someone, so that his image could recurrently reflect upon the screen of our mind, we are liberated from the limiting senses. The more frequently a thought is displayed upon the mental screen, the more vivid would be the formation of a pattern in the mind. And, this pattern of mind, in terms of spirituality, is called the ‘thinking approach’. When we imagine the spiritual mentor or ‘Shaykh’, as a matter of eternal law, the knowledge of Heavenly Attributes operative in the mentor or Shaykh is reflected upon our mind with frequent repetitions resulting in enlightenment of the mind of the spiritual associate with the lights functional in the mentor and transferred to him.

The enlightenment of the heart of the spiritual associate attempts to reaches the level of his mentor. This state, in Sufism, is called ‘Affinity’ (nisbat). The best and tested way to enjoy the affinity, according to spirituality, is the longing passion of love.

The mind of the mentor keeps on transferring to the spiritual associate according to the passion of love and longing for the mentor flows in him and there comes a time when the lights operative in Shaikh which actually are the reflections of Beatific Visions of God are transferred to the spiritual associate.

This enables the spiritual associate to be familiar with the effulgent lights and Beatific Visions. This state, in terms of sufism, is called ‘Be one with mentor’ (Fana fi Shaykh). The Lights of Shaykh and the refulgent Beatific Visions operative in mentor are not the personal trait of the mentor. Just as the spiritual associate, with devoted attention and concentration, assimilates the knowledge and the traits of his mentor, the mentor has absorbed the knowledge and attributes of the Holy Prophet (PBUH) with devoted attention and concentration of the mind.

Shaykh stated that ash-Shaykh Sirr as-Saqati said “la tasahu ‘l-mahabat” love is not authentic between two until one says to the other “ma anta illa ana -You are me and I am you.” You cannot be in love until you say to the other “ we are one. You are me and I am you.

So this is what His Eminence Shaykh has said that is represented in that picture. This picture is a pictorial representation of what Shaykh described.]

Step 4 Positioning of Mouth

Positioning of Mouth & Tongue

Close The eyes, close The mouth

Clench teeth, glue tongue to the roof of the mouth,

Slow the breath.

Remember its not me that counts I am nothing, I and Me must vanish into He.

My Shaykh , My Rasul , Leads us to My Lord..

Dhikr by negation and affirmation,

In the manner of the Naqshbandi Sufi Masters, demands that the seeker close his eyes, close his mouth, clench his teeth, glue his tongue to the roof of his mouth, and hold his breath. He must recite the dhikr through the heart, by negation and affirmation, beginning with the word LA (“No”).

He lifts this “No” from under his navel up to his brain. Upon reaching his brain the word “No” Don’t use your head to reach realities.

brings out the word ILAHA (“god”), moves from the brain to the Right shoulder, and Then to left shoulder where it hits the heart with ILALLAH (“except Allah”).

When that word hits the heart its energy and heat spreads to all the parts of the body. The seeker who has annihilated all that exists in this world with the words LA ILAHA, affirms with the words ILa ALLAH that all that exists has been annihilated in the Divine Presence.

Step 5 –Position of Hands:

75:4 Yes. [We are] Able [even] to proportion his fingertips.

75:4 Bala qadireena ‘ala an nusawwiya bananahu.

Thumb to Index position for most power. Hands are coded with number coding,

Right hand “18”,

Left Hand “81” both add to 9 and two 9’s Make 99 .

Hands are Dressed with Allahs Beautiful Names.

99th name of Rasul [s] is Mustafa (The Chosen One).. more later to come..

Secrets in The Holy Hands of Adam [as]

بَلَىٰ قَادِرِ‌ينَ عَلَىٰ أَن نُّسَوِّيَ بَنَانَهُ ٤
75:4Bala qadireena ‘ala an nusawwiya bananahu.
“Yes. [We are] Able [even] to proportion his fingertips.” (Qur’an 75:4 )

Qur’an is proving that your identity is connected to your finger print and has a tremendous importance. That you will be raised to the exact proportion of even your finger prints.

Hands Carry tremendous secrets, they are like your satellite dish, make sure they are clean and in the proper position. So when you begin with the hands, when washing them and rubbing them to activate them, that is sign of 1 and zero, and you being to activate the process of what codes Allah has given us through the hands, you begin to activate them. They have nine bullet points that consist of the whole system, the whole body. When you rub the fingers you are activating the 99 beautiful names of Allah.

b) By activating them you are activating the 9 points that are on your body.

Right hand “18”,                               Left Hand “81”

both add to 9 and two 9s

Make 99 .

Hands are Dressed with Allah’s Beautiful Names.

99th name of Rasul is Mustafa..

more later to come..

c)     And when you activate them, You Turn on the receiver, energy is going in, it begins to work to be able to receive, digitize it and release it out as a picture and as a sound, as we are seeing today.

d)     Similarly, the hands that are circles, that is why when we rub them and open them, they begin to act as circles over each other, taking all energy coming they are managing it

[To learn more about the Secrets of the hands and wudu refer to following articles:

Step 6 – Breathing

Inhale through Nose-Mantra/Dhikr = “Hu “,
imagine White light entering thru stomach.

Exhale through Nose-Mantra/Dhikr= “Hu”,
imagine Blackness carbon monoxide and all your bad actions being purged from you.

Conscious Breathing (“Hosh dar dam”)

Hosh means “mind.” Dar means “in.” Dam means “breath.” It means, according to Mawlana Abdul Khaliq al-Ghujdawani (q), that  “The most important mission for the seeker in this Order is to safeguard his breath, and he who cannot safeguard his breath, it would be said of him, ‘he lost himself.'”

Shah Naqshband (q) said,

“This Order is built on breath. So it is a must for everyone to safeguard his breath in the time of his inhalation and exhalation and further, to safeguard his breath in the interval between the inhalation and exhalation.”

“Dhikr is flowing in the body of every single living creatures by the necessity of their breath — even without will — as a sign of obedience, which is part of their creation. Through their breathing, the sound of the letter “Ha” of the Divine Name Allah is made with every exhalation and inhalation and it is a sign of the Unseen Essence serving to emphasize the Uniqueness of God. Therefore it is necessary to be present with that breathing, in order to realize the Essence of the Creator.”

The name ‘Allah’ which encompasses the ninety-nine Names and Attributes consists of four letters, Alif, Lam, Lam and the same Hah Breath - Hu from the source - Hu _ Meditation(ALLAH). The people of Sufism say that the absolute unseen Essence of Allah Exalted and Almighty is expressed by the last letter vowelized by the Alif, “Ha.” It represents the Absolutely Unseen “He-ness” of the Exalted God Safeguarding your breath from heedlessness will lead you to complete Presence, and complete Presence will lead you to complete Vision, and complete Vision will lead you to complete Manifestation of Allah’s Ninety-Nine Names and Attributes. Allah leads you to the Manifestation of His Ninety-Nine Names and Attributes and all His other Attributes, because it is said, “Allah’s Attributes are as numerous as the breaths of human beings.” It must be known by everyone that securing the breath from heedlessness is difficult for seekers.

Therefore they must safeguard it by seeking forgiveness (Istighfar) because seeking forgiveness will purify it and sanctify it and prepare the seeker for the Real Manifestation of Allah everywhere .

Safeguard Your Breath

“the wise seeker must safeguard his breath from heedlessness, coming in and going out, thereby keeping his heart always in the Divine Presence; and he must revive his breath with worship and servitude and dispatch this worship to His Lord full of life, for every breath which is inhaled and exhaled with Presence is alive and connected with the Divine Presence. Every breath inhaled and exhaled with heedlessness is dead, disconnected from the Divine Presence.”   To climb the mountain, the seeker must journey from the Lower world to the Divine Presence. He must travel from the ego’s world of sensual reality to the soul’s consciousness of the Divine Reality. Islamic Meditation Muraqaba

To make progress on this journey, the seeker must bring into his heart the picture of his Shaykh (tasawwur), as it is the most powerful means of detaching oneself from the hold of the senses. The Shaykh becomes, in his heart, the mirror of the Absolute Essence. If he is successful, the state of Self-Effacement (ghayba) or “absence” from the world of the senses, appears in him. To the degree that this state increases in him, his attachment to the world of the senses will weaken and disappear, and the station of the Absolute Void of Unsensing Other-than-Allah will dawn on him.

From Shaykh [So this picture is depicting the mureed entering the Shaykh into his heart. This is clear, as the book didn’t say “make the heart of the Shaykh enter your heart. “ Shaykh clearly wrote: “let the Shaykh enter your heart.”

The highest degree of this station is called fana (Annihilation).

Thus Shah Naqshband (q)
“The shortest path to our goal, which is Allah Almighty and Exalted, is for Allah to lift the veil from the Essence of the Face of His Oneness that appears in all creation. He does this with the State of Erasure (ghayba) and Annihilation in His Absolute Oneness (fana’), until His Majestic Essence dawns upon and eliminates consciousness of anything other than Him.

This is the end of the Journey of Seeking Allah and the beginning of another Journey.”

“At the end of the Journey of Seeking and the State of Attraction comes the State of Self-Effacement and Annihilation. This is the goal of all mankind as Allah mentioned in the Qur’an: ‘I did not create Jinn and Mankind except to worship me.’ Worship here means Perfect Knowledge (Marifat).”

From Tariqats follow either the Tariq-i-Nafsani, the way on which first of all the Nafs, the ego, is educated in order for the soul to be saved, or they follow the Tariq-i-Ruhani, the way on which first of all the Ruh, the spirit or soul is purified.

The Tariqa-e-Nafsani is heavy. Always you have to do the opposite of what your ego wants from you. It is a big fight.

[The Tariqa-e-Ruhani is easier. Shaykh says that on our way you can use the best of everything under the condition that you also do your best in worshiping Allah. On this way first of all the spirit or soul is purified, with no regard to the ego. After the Ruh has found its original attributes the ego, willingly or unwillingly, must follow the Ruh and obey its orders. ]

Step 7a – Keep Shaykh’s Love, Presence, Will

To carry the dress of the Shaykh:

3 levels of continuous struggle

Keep His Love {Muhabat} ,

Keep His Presence {Hudur}

Execute His Will upon our selves {Annihilation or Fana}

We have our love for him, so now wear his light and imagine everything from this point on, with that dress upon us.

This is our life support.

You can not eat, drink, pray, dhikr or do anything without imagining the Shaykh’s Image upon us.

This Love will mix in with His Presence, and this will open the door of Annihilation in Him. The more one can keep remembering to be dressed with him the more Annihilation will take place.

Then the guide will Annihilate you in the presence of the Holy Messenger of Allah Sayyidina Muhammad {S}. Where again you will keep

Rasul’s Love {Muhabat},

Keep His Presence {Hudur}

Execute His Will upon our selves {Annihilation or Fana}

Fana fi Ma Shaykh, RasulAllah, Allah..

Then Shaykh said, “you must be fani, annihilated, in your shaykh.” That means no more irada, no will. You are leaving your will and supplanting it with the Will of the Shaykh. This is what Shaykh is describing exactly in his book

Shaykh stated that ash-Shaykh Sirr as-Saqati said “la tasahu‘l mahabat” love is not authentic between two until one says to the other “ma anta illa ana -You are me and I am you.” You cannot be in love until you say to the other “ we are one. You are me and I am you. “ So this is what Shaykh has said that is represented in that picture. [This picture is a pictorial representation of what Shaykh described.]

Annihilation Fana Islamic Meditation Muraqaba In the state of spiritual associate’s oneness with the mentor those abilities of the Shaykh become activated in the spiritual associate (salik) because of which the Shaykh enjoys the affinity of the Holy Prophet (PBUH).

This stage, in terms of Sufism, is called ‘Oneness with the Holy Prophet’ (Fana fir Rasul).

It is the holy statement of the Holy Prophet (PBUH), “I am a human being just like you but I receive revelation”. When this statement is closely examined, it is found that the exaltation of the Last Prophet is that he received Revelations from God, Almighty which reflects the Divine Knowledge (Ilm-e-ladduni); the knowledge directly inspired by God, the Beatific Visions of God and the refulgent Lights upon the blessed Heart of Holy Prophet. In the state of ‘Oneness with the Holy Prophet’ a spiritual associate because of his passion, longing and love gradually, step by step, assimilates and recognizes the knowledge of the Holy Prophet.

Then comes that auspicious moment when the knowledge and learning is transferred to him according to his capacity from the Holy Prophet (PBUH). The spiritual associate absorbs in the traits of the Holy Prophet (PBUH) according to his aptitude, ability and capacity and because of his affinity with the Holy Prophet and his support, he manages to reach that state when he had acknowledged the Lordship of God, the Lord of the worlds saying, ‘Yes, indeed you are our Lord God! This affinity, in Sufism, is called Annihilation in Allah Love’ (Fana fil-lah) or simply ‘oneness’ (wahidyia). After that, if one is bestowed with ability one explores those areas about which narration has no words to explain them because of their delicacy and subtleness.

[For more details on the states of Fana (Annihilatin) refer to the article of Muhabat, Hudur, Fana – Love, Presence, and Annihilation

Step 7b

To Be, a thing non-existent, crystal clear vessel for Your Lords Heavenly Service. In the state of ‘Oneness with the Holy Prophet’ a spiritual associate because of his passion, longing and love gradually, step by step, assimilates and recognizes the knowledge of the Holy Prophet [s].

Step 2 Understanding Spiritual Energy

Spread The Light and Love of The Most Praised One, Most Honored One in Divinely Presence

Sayyidena wa Mawlana Muhammad al Mustafa [s]

Shaykh Kabbani began to open these realities in an easily digestible manner for the Western audience.

“The Prophet [s] said, “The Sun would Rise from the west “ That Sun is the Sun of Sayyidena Muhammad [s] and the guidance of The Sultan al Awliya Muhammad Nazim al Haqqani [Q].

The greatness of Mawlana Shaykh is that he offers many flavors for all people and teaches us to Teach Khair – goodness and love.

“Inna Allah la yandhuru ila suwarikum wa lakin yandhuru ila quloobikum”
“Verily Allah does not look at your pictures but He looks at your hearts.”

The goal and purpose of Islamic Meditation Muraqaba Muraqaba/Meditation/ Rabita Sharif  is to manifest perpetual presence in the reality of the Shaykh. The more one keeps to this vital practice, the more its benefit will manifest in his daily life to the point that he reaches the state of annihilation in the presence of the Shaykh. One must know well that the Shaykh is the bridge between illusion and reality and he remains in this world only for this purpose. The Shaykh is thus a unique rope extended to anyone who seek freedom for only he may serve as the link between one still mired in this world and the Divine Presence.

What purpose does meditation serve, and how can we reach such a state? It is mentioned in all our Holy Books: the Torah, the Gospels and in the Holy Qur’an, as a method to reach the Divine Presence. When we come face to face with our Creator, we leave everything else behind. Nothing remains except your soul. Even if I tried to cut you with a sword, you would not be harmed. Nothing can touch you physically in such a state, because your physical body will have entered your spiritual being. Normally it is the opposite: our souls are imprisoned in the physical body.

In a perfect state of meditation, your soul covers your physical body and you become a spirit. There was once a Grandshaykh, Shaykh Abdul Qadir al Jilani. While he was meditating he kept saying, “I am the truth!” People around him were offended by this utterance and started attacking him with swords, but nothing happened to him. They could not touch him.]