As the 1436 Dowra came to a close, Sayyidi Habib Umar bin Hafiz (may Allah protect him and benefit us by him) gave this advice to students returning home to their communities. The advice is specific to those who attended the Dowra but it also applies to those who followed the lessons online and is general advice to the Ummah:
- Work on your connection to Allah’s revelation. Spend time reflecting upon the Qur’an, seeking to understand it, plunging deep into its meanings and then be truthful in acting according to it and following its guidance. Bring peace and tranquillity to your souls through this. Do not neglect the speech of your Lord.
- Engage in Allah’s remembrance day and night. The person who receives the greatest reward for any action is the one who remembers Allah most while performing that action, whether it is resolving people’s disputes, raising children, struggling in the path of Allah or giving charity. So fill your hearts with Allah’s remembrance and seek to be elevated to higher levels of remembrance. The secret behind this is that when the slave remembers Allah, Allah remembers him. Allah remembers him with His mercy, His love and His kindness. When this takes place that which the slave will receive, witness and experience cannot be described.
- You must strengthen the ties of brotherhood for Allah’s sake so that you can work together to please Him. The Seal of the Prophets ﷺ taught us the secret of brotherhood, and Allah established the ties of brotherhood in the Qur’an:
The believers are nothing less than brothers to one another.
We hope that at the end of the Dowra the ties of brotherhood are very firm. This brotherhood may then spread in your homes, among your relatives and in your communities and your lands.
- What you receive from the Dowra is according to your intentions and your perception, for the Dowra was established for a great purpose. It relates to your state with Allah, your closeness to Allah, attaining His pleasure, being connected to His Beloved ﷺ , supporting him and seeking his companionship.
- Among the means of drawing close to Allah are truthfully turning yourself to Him and being in a state of alertness, such that you are aware of the secrets and wisdoms behind certain things and you seek to remove impurities from your hearts and actions. Truthfully turning yourself to Him and being in a state of alertness are reflected in your actions, your character and your states. You thus perform your inward and outward obligations in the best way; you perform a good amount of extra acts of worship; you avoid inward and outward prohibitions, acting upon the verse: Leave outward and inward sins; you make sure that these attributes are present in your heart: sincerity, veneration for the things Allah has taught us to venerate – the greatest of which is the Messenger of Allah ﷺ, truthfulness and a deep love for Allah and His Messenger. We should only love our own selves, our families and our children for Allah’s sake. We must look at our souls with the love of Allah and seek to attain the attributes which Allah loves and to remove the attributes which Allah dislikes. Then we show mercy to all created things for His sake.
- Your actions, your character and your states then lead to tasting and spiritual experience and this is the key to special knowledge of Allah. If this door is opened then it is something wondrous, and there is nothing sweeter than proximity to Allah,
as Imam al-Haddad indicated:
They attained that which is beyond all other things sought
By Allah this is a noble and lofty life.
Habib `Ali al-Habashi said of this taste or experience:
Make knowledge our guide governed by experience
In understanding the secret of being with Allah
One person may pray and he tastes and experiences whereas another may not; one person may recite the Qur’an and he tastes and experiences whereas another may not; one person may seek knowledge and he tastes and experiences whereas another may not. There is a big difference between the one who tastes and experiences and the one who does not.
- The gatherings, prayers in congregation, lessons and everything that takes place in the Dowra represents a covenant which is connected to the covenant which we took with Allah in the spiritual realm. In order to honour this covenant you must live for Allah and die for Allah and be Allah’s troops, those who implement the Sacred Law and act according to the Sunnah wherever they are. If these gatherings are accepted, they are the best preparation for the next life. How we spend our time in this life dictates what our state will be in the next life. So do not waste periods of time which could be a source of comfort but are instead a source of regret in the next life.
I hope from these gatherings in Dar al-Mustafa that we attain the strongest of connections to al-Mustafa ﷺ and we experience a longing for al-Mustafa, a yearning to meet him and that we then support him and his cause such that we live forever in the companionship of al-Mustafa. By Allah, this is the greatest victory.’
 Al-Hujurat, 49:10
 Al-An`am, 6:120