Seek Forgiveness for the Believing Men and Women

Sayyidi Habib Umar bin Hafiz (may Allah protect him and benefit us by him) marvels at Allah’s command to His Beloved ﷺ to seek forgiveness for the believing men and women and the Beloved’s request for us to do the same.

Be certain that there is no deity except Allah and seek forgiveness for your sins and for the sins of believing men and women (Muhammad, 47:19). In this we observe Your mercy and compassion for the believing men and women as You address Your servant, the one You made absolutely compassionate and merciful to the believers.  You say to him, “seek forgiveness for them, ask Me to forgive them, for I wish to forgive them. Turn to them, intercede for them and act as their intermediary, for you are the most beloved of all My creation to Me.”

Allah says to the one He loves the most: “Seek forgiveness for the believing men and women.” This is an amazing manifestation of Allah’s compassion and mercy for the believing men and women! Before we even gathered together and sought His forgiveness, Allah said to the greatest of all leaders: “Seek forgiveness for them – those who live in your time and those who will come after you. The subtle manifestations of My will have preceded such that I show mercy to them with the most noble of My creation in My sight acting as an intermediary: and seek forgiveness for your sins and for the sins of believing men and women. And he duly sought forgiveness for us.

Every day and night he would seek forgiveness for the believing men and women and he commanded all those who love him and follow him to do the same along with him: “Whoever seeks forgiveness for the believing men and women every day twenty-seven times will be among those whose prayers are answered and those by whom the people of the earth receive provision and rain.” (Tabarani)

If the person who responds to the Prophet’s invitation to do this becomes someone whose prayers are answered and someone by whom the people of the earth receive provision and rain, then what about the Prophet himself? Just by following the Prophet, obeying his command and seeking forgiveness for believing men and women, this person receives something directly from the Prophet. He attains such a state in Allah’s sight that through him provision, rain and goodness is apportioned. But what about the source of all this – the Prophet himself? The individual follower reaches this state as a result of the Prophet. What does this tell us about the station of Muhammad in the sight of the King of Kings?

Extracts from a talk delivered in Dar al-Mustafa, 18th Shawwal 1440

In order to act upon the hadith we should say 27 times every day:

أَسْتَغْفِرُ اللهَ لِلْمُؤْمِنِينَ والمؤمِنَات

Astaghfirullaha lil-mu’minina wa’l-mu’minat

I seek forgiveness for the believing men and women

The Origins of Dreams

Answered by Sayyidi Habib Umar bin Hafiz (may Allah protect him and benefit us by him)

How can you tell the origin of a dream?

Scholars like Imam al-Ghazali teach us principles for identifying the origin of the passing thoughts (khawatir) that come to the heart. Those thoughts may be divine (directly from Allah), angelic, satanic (from the whisperings of the Devil) or from the lower self (nafs). The same principles may be applied to dreams. So if a dream is followed by a feeling of tranquillity and presence of heart its origin is divine or angelic. If it is followed by a feeling of unsettledness then it is from the lower self or the Devil. If you dream about something you have thought a lot about in the past then this is from the lower self. When you remember Allah afterwards, the effects of dreams that come from the Devil disappear.

If the dream contains encouragement to disobey Allah, become lazy in acts of obedience or hold a bad opinion about someone or harm them then it is from the Devil. Generally speaking, any dream which contains going against the Shariah or against good etiquette (adab) is from the Devil. Any dream which encourages you to do good, have a good opinion of others and increases you in humility is from Allah.

Allah says: Satan threatens you with the prospect of poverty and commands you to do foul deeds; Allah promises you His forgiveness and His abundance: Allah is limitless and all knowing  (al-Baqarah, 2:268).

A Short Prayer Upon the Prophet ﷺ

Sayyidi Habib Umar bin Hafiz was asked for a simple prayer upon the Prophet ﷺ that it is easy to recite consistently

He advised reciting this prayer which he received from his teacher, Habib Muhammad bin `Alawi bin Shihab:

اللَّهُمَّ صَلِّ وسَلِّمْ على سَيِّدِنا مُحَمَّدٍ النَّبِيِّ الأُمِّي بِعَدَدِ عِلْمِك

Allahumma salli wa sallim `ala sayyidina Muhammad annabiyyi’l ummi bi `adadi `ilmik

O Allah, bestow prayers and peace upon our Master Muhammad, the Unlettered Prophet according to the extent of Your knowledge.

How Does a Seeker of Knowledge Attain Openings?





Answered by Sayyidi Habib Umar bin Hafiz (may Allah protect him and benefit us by him)

How does a seeker of knowledge attain openings?

Seekers must abide by the etiquettes of seeking knowledge. They must spend time reviewing what they have studied with fellow students and write down important points which they learn.

They should call upon Allah by His names the Opener, the All-Knowing 100 times a day:

يا فَتَّاحُ يا عَلِيمُ

Ya Fattāḥ ya `Alīm

They should also repeat Ayat al-Kursi followed by this prayer upon the Prophet ﷺ :

اَللَّهُمَّ صَلِّ وَ سَلِّمْ عَلى سَيِّدِنا مُحَمَّدٍ وَ عَلي آلِ سَيِّدِنا مُحَمَّدٍ في كُلِّ لَمْحَةٍ وَ نَفَسٍ بِعَدَدِ كُلِّ  مَعْلومٍ لَكَ

Allahumma salli wa sallim ‘ala sayyidina Muhammad wa ‘ala ali sayyidina Muhammad fi kulli lamhatin wa nafasin bi `adadi kulli ma`lumin lak

O Allah, bestow prayers and peace on our master Muhammad and his Family in every instant and every breath equal to the amount of everything known to You

Maintaining Our Connection to the Quran on Eid

Try to recite a portion of the Quran on Eid.

If you do this on the day of Eid and the next day and the day after you will maintain the connection you made with the speech of Allah during Ramadan. The comfort you felt and the ease with which you recited it will continue throughout the year. You will not fall into the darkness of abandoning the Quran.

The more you are distracted with Eid, however, the harder it will be to return to the Qur’an. The soul is slow to become accustomed to doing good but fast to become accustomed to leaving it.

O Allah, make us among the people of the Quran. Do not make us among those who the Prophet ﷺ complained about to his Lord. Allah then revealed: The Messenger cried out: “Lord, my people had abandoned this Quran.” (25:30)

Habib Ali al-Jifri (may Allah protect him and benefit us by him)

Intentions For After Ramadan

Answered by Sayyidi Habib Umar bin Hafiz (may Allah protect him and benefit us by him)

What intentions should we make for after Ramadan?

We intend to be among those whose entire year is Ramadan

We intend that our connection with Allah is expressed in our actions throughout the day and the night

We intend to serve the Ummah in the best way by focusing on the Three Objectives (knowledge, devotion and service)

We intend to seek the pleasure of Allah and to make His Messenger ﷺ happy in all that we do

We intend to attain an increase in presence of heart with Allah at all times but especially during the prayer and recitation of the Quran and the adhkar

We intend to establish gatherings with our brothers and sisters who we love for Allah’s sake

We intend to fast the Six Days of Shawwal and other blessed days such as Tāsūā’ and Ashura (9th and 10th Muharram) and the Day of Arafah and at least three days in every month

Preserving the Light of Ramadan

Answered by Sayyidi Habib Umar bin Hafiz (may Allah protect him and benefit us by him)

How do we preserve the light of Ramadan once the month has ended?

One of the keys to preserving what we have attained is in the intentions we make before the month ends. We should make firm intentions to do good in Shawwal and beyond. We also need to beg Allah to preserve and increase the gifts He has given us. We need to be consistent in our attendance of gatherings and classes, consistent in our recitation of the Quran while reflecting upon its meanings and consistent in our recitation of the adhkar with presence of heart. We must also choose the best company and sit in the presence of people who have been given light.

Photo credit: Mahabbah Foundation

Why did Allah conceal Laylat al-Qadr?

He could have made it a specific night so people could be completely prepared for it.

But it is concealed in order that the believer remains in a state of anticipation – awaiting and hoping for the bounty of Allah. Thus his connection to Allah is not based upon one specific time which comes and goes and then he turns away from Allah and gets on with something else. This is the divine wisdom.

Furthermore that anticipation of Allah’s bounty nurtures a state of knowledge of Allah in the heart – the more you turn to Him, the more you seek His pleasure, the more you hope for His gifts the more light increases in your heart. Allah says in the hadith qudsi: “I am as my servant perceives Me.”

The more you think good of Him, the more good grows in your heart; the more you believe He will give you, the more He will give you.

This develops and nurtures your relationship with Allah which is the secret behind Laylat al-Qadr, the secret behind Ramadan and the secret behind every act of worship.

Habib Ali al-Jifri (may Allah protect him and benefit us by him)

Etiquette of Sleep and Wakefulness

Hb Umar C Town 19 1

 

If someone neglects the etiquette of being awake, their wakefulness becomes sleep. If someone abides by the etiquette of sleep, however, their sleep becomes wakefulness.

Much harm is caused to Muslims by their hearts being asleep. Being distracted by other than Him is, in reality, sleep. If we realised the truth, we would wake up.

Sleeper, wake up! Muslims are in a deep sleep. That is why disbelievers being given power over Muslims can be likened to the animals of the jungle playing around a sleeping lion.

Sayyidi Habib Umar bin Hafiz (may Allah protect him and benefit us by him)

Source: Tawjih al-Nabih, Page 292