Friday, January 18, 2013

Levels of trust in Allah and our livelihood: Shaykh Abdul Qadir Jilani (r.a)

“And whosoever puts his trust in Allah then He will suffice him.” (65:3)

The prophet, sallallahu alayhi wa sallam, said, “If you all depend on Allah with true reliance, He would certainly give you provision as He gives it to birds who go forth hungry in the morning and return with a full belly at dusk.” (Related by Tirmidhi, who graded it authentic).

Depending upon Allah in attaining one’s provision is itself a form of worship, and is from the completion and perfection of one’s Iman. People are of different levels in this issue. Shaykh Abdul Qadir Jilani (r.a) has discussed these levels and their consequences in his inimitable style...

Stage I :

Nothing blocks you from direct receiving of Allah's grace and favor except your reliance upon people and connections, on good turns and handouts. Thus creatures are your obstacle to gaining a proper livelihood, in keeping with the exemplary practice of the Prophet. As long as you continue to depend on fellow creatures, hoping for their gifts and favors, going from door to door with your requests, you are associating His creation with Allah. He will therefore punish you with deprivation of that proper livelihood, namely the lawful earnings of this world.


Then, when you have renounced the habit of depending on people and associating them with your Lord (Almighty and Glorious is He), and have resorted to earning your own livelihood, you get to rely on this earning power and become complacent about it, forgetting the gracious favor of your Lord. You are once again behaving like a polytheist [mushrik], only now the polytheism [shirk] is concealed, of a subtler nature than the previous kind. Allah (Almighty and Glorious is He) will therefore punish you by depriving you of His favor and of direct access to Him.


When you turn from this in repentance, ceasing to allow the encroachment of polytheism, and forsaking reliance on your own earning power and abilities, you will see that Allah (Almighty and Glorious is He) is the Provider. It is He who supplies the means, the facilities and the energy one needs to make a living, and He is the One who enables all good results to be achieved. All sustenance is in His hand. At times He may supply it to you by way of other people, through your appealing to them while in distress or trying straits, or in response to your appeal to Him (Almighty and Glorious is He), sometimes by way of earned remuneration, and at still other times by His spontaneous favor, in such a way that you do not see the intervening cause and means.

You have turned again to Him, casting yourself down before Him, and He has lifted the veil between you and His favor. He has made Himself accessible to you, and graciously ministers to all your needs in the measure appropriate to your condition, acting like a kind and tactful physician who is also a friend to the patient. As a precaution on His part, and to purge you of any attachment to anyone but Him, He satisfies you with His favor.

-Taken from the Sixteenth Discourse from Futuh al-Ghaib of Shaykh Abdul Qadir Jilani (r.a)

No comments:

Post a Comment