Companionship of the travelers of Mystic path
Companionship has a profound effect on a person’s moral, social, individual and collective life. It is companionship that makes a person worthy or non-worthy.
Abu Musa narrated that the Holy Prophet said:
- The example of a good companion (who sits with you) in comparison to a bad one, is like that of the musk seller and the blacksmith’s bellows (or furnace); from the first you would either buy musk or enjoy its good smell while the bellows would either burn your clothes or your house, or you get a bad nasty smell thereof. (Sahih Bukhari: 2101)
Abu Sa’id al-Khudri narrated that the Divine messenger said:
- Never make a friend except a true believer and let the pious eat your food.
Here food refers to the knowledge of marifa which is food of soul.
Companionship with True Believers is a Sign of Faith
Companionship and intimacy with true believers and pious ones bow seed of Divine love in heart. Therefore, it is incumbent upon a true believer that he does not make such friends and companion whose religion and faith is subject to suspicion. Rather he should adopt the company of a person who has higher Divine proximity or keeps striving for it. There is no good in the companionship of those who are oblivious to Him and are slave of their desires.
Which Friend Is Best?
The Holy Prophet was asked: “Which of our companions are best?” He replied: “One whose countenance reminds you of your Lord.
Allah Creates Mutual Harmony in the Hearts of Traveler of Mystic Path
The Quran says:
اِنَّ الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا وَ عَمِلُوا الصّٰلِحٰتِ سَیَجۡعَلُ لَہُمُ الرَّحۡمٰنُ وُدًّا ﴿۹۶﴾
Meaning: Surely, those who believed and did pious deeds, the Most Kind (Lord) will create love for them in the hearts (of the people). (Maryam: 96)
Here believers refer to true seekers (sacred Companions and all the pious men who came after them). They adopt the Companionship of true servants of Allah (Fakirs) for Divine proximity and nearness. In present age, these true seekers are called disciples or Divine seekers and their all the mystic endeavours for Divine nearness are their good deeds. When these disciples (travelers of Mystic path) interact with each other for the fulfillment of their duties toward their Lord then He, the Almighty, creates love, empathy and compassion in their hearts.
About their collective unity the Quran states:
وَ تَعَاوَنُوۡا عَلَی الۡبِرِّ وَ التَّقۡوٰی ۪ وَ لَا تَعَاوَنُوۡا عَلَی الۡاِثۡمِ وَ الۡعُدۡوَانِ ۪ وَ اتَّقُوا اللّٰہَ ؕ اِنَّ اللّٰہَ شَدِیۡدُ الۡعِقَابِ ﴿۲﴾
Meaning: And always support one another in (the works of) righteousness and piety, but do not become accomplices in (works of) sin and transgression. And fear Allah persistently. (Al-Maidah: 2)
Prophet Mohammad says:
- As long as the slave of Allah keeps helping his Muslim brother, He, the Almighty remains there for his help.
Importance of Companionship of the travelers of Mystic path
Verily, all those who embrace Islam are brothers in religion but seekers of truth and travelers of Faqr, the true and real soul of Islam are the most glorious. Their mutual relationship is called companionship of the travelers of Mystic path. This relation is not the inception of present era but it was initiated by Lord of both the worlds, Light of Divinity, Sovereign of both the worlds Prophet Mohammad fourteen hundred years ago in the early days of prophethood.
When the beloveds of Allah settled in the land of Madina by His command and raised their slogan of Truth, Islam emerged as an organized religion. It was the time when the Holy Prophet bound them in brotherhood. And this Holy congregation, under the kind supervision of their beloved guide and Murshid, Prophet Mohammad, began to reach the height of Faqr (Sufism) and Mysticism in order to attain Divine nearness and proximity. These travelers of Mystic path set exceptional examples of compassion, brotherhood, kindness and self-sacrifice during their companionship.
Rewards Are For Those Who Cooperate In Religious Matters
وَ السّٰبِقُوۡنَ الۡاَوَّلُوۡنَ مِنَ الۡمُہٰجِرِیۡنَ وَ الۡاَنۡصَارِ وَ الَّذِیۡنَ اتَّبَعُوۡہُمۡ بِاِحۡسَانٍ ۙ رَّضِیَ اللّٰہُ عَنۡہُمۡ وَ رَضُوۡا عَنۡہُ وَ اَعَدَّ لَہُمۡ جَنّٰتٍ تَجۡرِیۡ تَحۡتَہَا الۡاَنۡہٰرُ خٰلِدِیۡنَ فِیۡہَاۤ اَبَدًا ؕ ذٰلِکَ الۡفَوۡزُ الۡعَظِیۡمُ ﴿۱۰۰﴾
Meaning: And the Emigrants and their Supporters (Ansar), the vanguard of the believers, and those who follow them in the grade of spiritual excellence—Allah is well-pleased with them (all) and they (all) are well-pleased with Him. And He has prepared for them Gardens with rivers flowing under them. They will live in them forever. This is indeed a colossal achievement. (Al-Tawbah: 100)
- Ibn Abbas narrated that the Holy Prophet was asked: “Which of our companions are best?” He replied: “One whose countenance reminds you of Allah, and whose speech increases action, and whose actions remind you of the hereafter.” (Majma al-Zawaid, vol. 10)
Mutual Love Is One of The Characteristics of Travelers of Mystic Path
The characteristics of mutual love and affection are also found in the morals of travelers of Mystic path. Meaning thereby, like the sacred Companions of the Holy Prophet they have attributes of mutual love and unity.
Holy Quran says:
مُحَمَّدٌ رَّسُوۡلُ اللّٰہِ ؕ وَ الَّذِیۡنَ مَعَہٗۤ اَشِدَّآءُ عَلَی الۡکُفَّارِ رُحَمَآءُ بَیۡنَہُمۡ ﴿٪۲۹﴾
Meaning: Mohammad (blessings and peace be upon him) is the Messenger of Allah. And those with him are hard and tough against the disbelievers but kind-hearted and merciful amongst themselves. (Al-Fath: 29)
Esoteric Selves Get Beneficence From Others Esoteric Self
Shaykh Shahab al-Din Abu Hafs Umar Suhrawardi says in Awarif al-Maarif:
- The companionship of pious people proves to be very beneficial and it has also been said that meeting with co-disciples (travelers of Mystic path) is very beneficial and worthwhile. There is no denying that esoteric selves get beneficence from others esoteric self and one gets strength and support from the other. To see pious at a glance is also beneficial because it is a rule that by looking at different faces, the same qualities are created in the beholder as are observed by him.
- Always looking at sad faces makes a person sad
- Looking at happy faces makes him happy and joyful.
For this reason it is said that the person seeing whom is not beneficial for you, his speech will also not be beneficial for you. (Awarif al-Maarif)
Companionship of travelers of Mystic path Unveils the Secrets of Esoteric Self
Abdullah ibn al-Mubarak says:
- The greatest advantage of having companionship of travelers of Mystic path is that it unveils the states of esoteric self. Moreover, through it one gets acquainted with the knowledge of past and future events. (Awarif al-Maarif)
Drawbacks of Deviation from the Companionship of travelers of Mystic path
When a true believer separates from his Muslim brother or does not cooperate with him in religious matters, this act is one of the most undesirable deeds in the Divine court. In such a case, the state of esoteric self of the one who separated himself from a true believer can also get worse.
Ibn Umar narrated that Holy Prophet said:
- Indeed my Lord will not gather my umma – or he said: Mohammad’s umma upon deviation and Allah’s Hand is over the Jama’ah, and whoever deviates, he deviates to the Fire. (al-Tirmidhi: 2167)
The negativity of bad people clouds the thoughts and actions of a seeker (traveler of Mystic path). As a result, his good deeds become hollow. So, the companionship and association with bad people should be avoided.
Companionship of Wrongdoer Led to Astray
Regarding those who refuse to have companionship of good people (traveler of Mystic path), the Quran says:
وَ یَوۡمَ یَعَضُّ الظَّالِمُ عَلٰی یَدَیۡہِ یَقُوۡلُ یٰلَیۡتَنِی اتَّخَذۡتُ مَعَ الرَّسُوۡلِ سَبِیۡلًا ﴿۲۷﴾ یٰوَیۡلَتٰی لَیۡتَنِیۡ لَمۡ اَتَّخِذۡ فُلَانًا خَلِیۡلًا ﴿۲۸﴾ لَقَدۡ اَضَلَّنِیۡ عَنِ الذِّکۡرِ بَعۡدَ اِذۡ جَآءَنِیۡ ؕ وَ کَانَ الشَّیۡطٰنُ لِلۡاِنۡسَانِ خَذُوۡلًا ﴿۲۹﴾
Meaning: And that Day, every wrongdoer will bite his hands (in fury and frustration and) will say: ‘Would that I had taken the path (of guidance by joining) the companionship of the Holy Messenger (blessings and peace be upon him). Ah! Woe to me! Would that I had not taken such a one for a friend. Surely, he led me astray from the direction and guidance after it had come to me, and Satan leaves man helpless and forlorn (in the time of distress). (Al-Furqan: 27-29)
Companionship of an evil is more harmful to man than a serpent and a Satan
Abu Hamid Al-Ghazali said:
- Friendship and companionship of an evil is more harmful to man than a serpent and a Satan. Because Satan only whispers in man and tries to seduce him but a wicked friend forces him to do evil. (Awarif al-Maarif)
He further says:
- It is better to remain alone than to have companionship of an evil. Moreover, having companionship of good and pious one is better than sitting alone. (Awarif al-Maarif)
A Man Is Upon The Religion Of His Friend
Abu Hurairah narrated that the Holy Prophet said:
- A man is upon the religion of his friend, so let one of you looks at whom he befriends. (al-Tirmidhi: 2378)
The sacred Companion of Prophet Mohammad, Umar ibn al-Khattab said:
- Be in the company of those who repent and seek forgiveness in abundance. It is because, their hearts are very soft.
It is very clear from the above quote that Allah does not like a hard-hearted and cruel man. Therefore, those who always remain busy in invocation and repent on their sins in His Holy court are under the throne of Divine mercy and His special grace and bounty is showered on them at all times.
A wise saying is:
صحبت صالح ترا صالح کند
صحبت طالح ترا طالح کند
Meaning: Companionship of a pious will make you pious and companionship of a wicked will make you wicked.
Perfect Spiritual Guide Keeps Travelers Of Mystic Path In Brotherhood
Perfect spiritual guide, on the one hand is a source of unlimited spiritual authorities. On the other hand, he holds the honour of being at the footsteps of Prophet Mohammad. Therefore, he not only spiritually trains his disciples but also exoterically keeps them in brotherhood.
The perfect Fakir of present era, Sultan-ul-Ashiqeen Sultan Mohammad Najib-ur-Rehman is the possessor of unlimited spiritual authorities. Besides, he has peerless leadership qualities which cannot be counted. He, with the help of his spiritual authorities not only nurtured moral values in his disciples, but also he has instilled in them brotherhood, compassion and humanity.
Companionship Of Worldly People Takes Away The Soul Of Faith
As the love of this world takes away faith of a man, in the same way companionship of worldly people takes away the soul of faith. To nourish the soul of faith and to develop moral values in the travelers of Mystic path Sultan-ul-Ashiqeen has connected them through various spiritual endeavours. He is very soft hearted and kind to the creatures. Even he has forgotten his health and comfort for the betterment of mankind.
Sultan-ul-Ashiqeen organizes various spiritual gatherings for the esoteric and exoteric training of travelers of Mystic path. This not only purifies the innerselves of the attendees but also bestow them the permanent presence of Mohammadan Assembly after purgation of heart and brightening of soul. Moreover, it increases the passion of mutual brotherhood and they help each other in their duties towards their Creator.
Companionship Of A Fakir Lit The Lamp Of Faith In The Heart
Only a perfect Fakir is the real well-wisher and guide for mankind. His companionship lit the lamp of faith in the hearts and a passion for Divine proximity increases which elevates a man to the status of noblest of all the creatures.
Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani says:
- Endeavour to join the assembly of the perfect spiritual guide because it blesses with the accomplishment in religion. In his celestial company and assembly a person’s inward is filled with pure love of Allah whose value is only known to those who have been blessed with the invocation of Allah’s name. (Ghunyat al-Talibeen)
Remember, sitting in the company of Saints is a source of blessing and it strengthens faith. The seeker who is lost in his own self and does not consider the company of a spiritual guide necessary can never gain the feelings of kindness and compassion.
The Path Of Saints Is That Of Holy Prophet
Mujaddid Alif Sani Shaykh Ahmad Sirhindhi says:
- The way of Saints is same as the way of scared Companions of Prophet Mohammad. Nobody has exception from companionship of Saints even though he is at the highest level of purity. Imam Abu Hanifa adopted the companionship of Bahlool Dana for two years. He used to say, “If it were not these two years, I would have ruined.”
Shaykh Ahmad Sirhindhi further said:
- Benevolence of a spiritual guide is better than (remaining busy in) invocation. (Monthly Sultan-ul-Faqr Magazine, April 2008)
Shaykh Ahmad Sirhindi (Mujaddid Alif Sani) utters:
گرد مستاں گرد، گر مے کم رسد بوئے رسد
بوئے او گر کم رسد، رویت ایشاں بس است
Explanation: Keep following the passionate lovers of Allah so that you may at least smell the wine of love if not the love itself. If you cannot even avail its fragrance then their sacred vision is also enough for you. (Sufism – The Soul of Islam)
Umar ibn al-Khattab
Umar ibn al-Khattab said about the companionship of travelers of Mystic path:
- If a person keeps fasting day and night and prays all the night, also gives alms and charity and does Jihad but if he does not love someone for sake of Allah Almighty nor have hostility for sake of Allah then all these deeds of such person are useless. (Awarif al-Maarif)
In short, it is obligatory upon each traveler of Mystic path to sow the seed of Divine love in his heart and adopt the companionship of a perfect spiritual guide for moral progress and to consider sitting in the company of travelers of Mystic path as a blessing.
Shaykh Abu Bakr al-Talmistani said:
- Be with your Lord (take His companionship), if you do not have such power, then be in the companionship of those who live in His companionship (spiritual guide) so that the blessing of their companionship may take you in the companionship of your Lord. (Awarif al-Maarif)
Holy Quran states:
یَوۡمَ نَدۡعُوۡا کُلَّ اُنَاسٍۭ بِاِمَامِہِمۡ ۚ﴿۷۱﴾
Meaning: (Call to mind) the Day when We shall call every section of people along with their leaders. (Bani Israel: 71)
The Companionship Of The Virtuous Will Surely Lead Man To Good
The companionship of the virtuous will surely lead man to good one day and the companionship of the wicked will surely lead him to evil no matter how much he tries to save himself from it.
A poet says:
کند ہم جنس با ہم جنس پرواز
کبوتر با کبوتر، باز با باز
Explanation: Birds of a feather flock together. Pigeon like to flock with pigeons and eagle like to flock with eagles.