25. Dhul Qadah 1438  Jumu'ah
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PURPOSE OF TARIQA

excerpt from Key to the Garden by Al Habib Ahmad Mashhur bin Taha Al-Haddad


The basic purpose of tariqa is to struggle against the nafs, to purify it by acquiring pleasing traits of character and to impose the Muhammadan Shari’a on it inwardly and outwardly, all in the way followed by our righteous predecessors (salaf).  This is the Sufism which is derived from the statement of God the Exalted, “Succesful is he who purifies himself and remembers the Name of his Lord and prays. (87:14-5)”  Because of its frivolous and extravagant nature, the nafs can submit only to overwhelming power, clear proofs, or the ministrations of a skillful physician.  The power of truth and guidance disappeared a long time ago, when temporal power and the Quran went separate ways, just as the truthful Prophet and foretold and a state based on favouritism and tyranny came into being, which cast religion aside, pursued its own interests and attempted to establish firmly its own authority and might.  As time went by and the generations among whom guidance and goodness had been paramount grew more remote, egotistic whims and passions became supreme, so than men’s sight grew blind to the proof of the Shari’a.  Therefore God assigned for the preservation of His religion a group of people from each generation, who “shall continue to uphold the truth, unharmed by those who oppose them, until the Command of God arrives.”

These people are none other than those who keep and protect their Book, Sunna and the way of their predecessors.  They took the direction they were called upon to take in the Book and Sunna, they practised the injunction contained therein and summoned unruly nafs to them in gentle wise ways, reconciling and attracting them through permitted pleasures and means of joy and delight from which the nafs is not repelled, such as Audition (sama), hadras, righteous assemblies of dhikr and other circumstances which help refine the nafs and train it to acquire excellent traits of character and good habits.

The following doa by Al Habib in the book reflects his closeness with Allah s.w.t. and his link with Tariqah Ba’Alawi which avoids unrestrained thinking in matters pertaining to wahyu and sunnah

Purpose_of_Tariqa

“O Lord, I seek refute in You, lest my faith in You and what You have revealed be the product of thinking that is tarnished by the attributes of the ego, or a mind that is mixed with the muddiness of human fallibility.  Let it rather be from Your Manifest Light, Your most exalted assistance, the light of Your Prophet, the Chosen One and his blessings (barakat).”