When the Qiyāmah comes upon one of you while holding a sapling, then let him plant it

tree blossom

anas hadith

hadith tree

Anas ibn Malik reported that the Messenger of Allah, sallallahu alayhi wa sallim, said, “When the Qiyamah (end of the world and Rising) comes upon one of you while holding a sapling, then let him plant it.”

A clear message from the Rasulullah, sallallahu alayhi wa sallim, about action in this world and its relation to the next. A sapling, of course, needs time and conditions to grow to its fullness and it may seem pointless to bother with it when there is no time left and no earth to grow it in. But he, sallallahu alayhi wa sallim, never said anything without purpose or meaning, and he helps us understand the nature of this world and the next and their relation to time/beyond time.

Continue reading “When the Qiyāmah comes upon one of you while holding a sapling, then let him plant it”

Commentary on the Miftāhul Wird


إنَّ اللهَ و مَلائِكَتَهُ يُصلُّونَ على النَّبِي يَأَيُها الذينَ آمنوا صَلُّوا عَلَيْهِ و سَلِّمُ تَسْليماً

اللهمَّ صَلِّ و سَلِّم و بارِك عَلَيْهِ و على آلِهِ و صَحْبِهِ عَدَدَ ما في عِلْمِ اللهِ صَلاةً دائِمَةً بِدَوَامِ مُلْكِ الله


The Wird

In the light of our isolation and inability to gather together, leading to a virtual gathering of the recitation of Shaykh Muhammad ibn al-Habib’s ‘Miftahul Wird’, may Allah fill his tomb with light, and through the medium of the Internet, including people who are less familiar with it, I wish to assist in its participant’s benefit and understanding of its gifts and adab using the Shaykh’s own commentary on his blessed ‘Key to the Source’, and may Allah help me to fulfill that desire with clarity and forgive me for any errors, which I am more than happy to be corrected on.

In Shaykh Muhammad ibn al-Habib’s lifetime, he predicted that his diwan would be sung around the world, which was extraordinary at the time, and this virtual gathering as well as the extant communities  testify to his insight, and in great measure to the efforts of his murid and heir, Shaykh Dr. ‘Abdaqadir as-Sufi.

In the beginning of his qasidah, ‘Commentary on the Wird’, which is the first song in his renowned diwan entitled, ‘The Desire of Journeying Murids and the Gift to Wayfaring Gnostics’, he begins by describing himself as, عبُيَدُْ, ‘ubayd’, the diminutive of ‘Abd as an expression of humility and a protection against claim, as he starts to counsel us in regards to his Wird.

Continue reading “Commentary on the Miftāhul Wird”


Be the slave of Allah and His Rasul; that is obeying them and no one else. This squarely lays the burden at your own door. It is subservience uniquely to the Lord of the universe, subhanahu wa ta’ala, and His beloved Messenger, sallallahu alayhi wa sallim. It does not matter what anyone else says or does, you are ultimately answerable to the King and His beloved Intercessor. Do not mistake this as a call to independence of creation or rebellion against it, as there are those who are above and beyond you in service of their Lord, and your true slavery will never be in conflict with theirs. Continue reading “Slavery”

The Intercessor



The existence of intercession by the intercessor is essential to the Muslim. Intercession is a gift from Allah to both His Prophet and the Prophet’s ummah or people.

It is a gift to the Rasul, sallallahu alayhi wa sallim, because of his love for his people and a gift to them because of their need and the inherent weakness of humanity. Continue reading “The Intercessor”


Allah, subhanahu wa ta’ala, ties Iman (trust) and ‘Aml (work) together throughout the blessed and noble Book, but ‘Aml, is always qualified by the word ‘Salih’. These two words are completely unambiguous, ‘Aml being action or work and Salih meaning good, incorrupt, honest, virtuous, sound and in good order. Iman and ‘Amilu Salihat translate directly into the two pillars of Salah and Zakah as the foundation of the life of the Muslim and from them all good proceeds. It is as if, without this manifestation, the spring of life remains hidden within the mountain and does not burst forth and flow with its life-giving nourishment. This bi-directional existence of the Muslim, one exclusively to his Lord, the other to his fellow man marks him out among the generality and he becomes a locus of sincerity, worshipping his Master because it is His due and working for his nation because it is their due.
Continue reading “‘Aml”


One of the great victims of the modern era of calculation and valuation is imagination. In the reduction of values to the numerical, i.e. popularity, Van Gogh = $23,000,000, and so on, the possible has been reduced to the probable.

The possible is only limited by Allah, subhanahu wa ta’ala, and the probable, for man, is what he limits himself to.

I remember our shaykh, Dr. Abdalqadir as-Sufi telling us once that, Continue reading “Imagine”

Truth and Freedom

There is much talk of truth and freedom these days as tangible things or goals to be achieved; the overthrow of tyranny; the establishment of democracy and human rights. People bandy these words around in public as though they are the masters of them or their proponents. They are deluded liars and they permeate societies at every level; they are the vociferous ones, who stand for justice, liberty and equality. They claim the moral high ground in the name of humanism and demand the changing of the order for the security of the masses. They are enemies to themselves, one section seeking dominance over another, snarling and biting each other like dogs over a carcase; their sign is that they say exactly the opposite of what they do. Continue reading “Truth and Freedom”


Hasan al-Basri, radiallahu anhu, said that Sufism was a reality without a name and that in his time it had become a name without a reality.

This sahabi was the first of our shaykhs who took from Sayyiduna ‘Ali, radiallahu anhu, a man that had sat on the knee of the Rasul, sallallahu alayhi wa sallim. In saying this he was indicating a change that had happened in a very short space of time, but what I find significant is that he talks of a reality that existed among the sahaba, a quality of existence and knowledge that did not have a form or language of its own; it was not codified; it was the very substance of everyday life. So these people were not Sufis; they were Muslims; Muhajireen, Ansar, Bani this and Bani that, Arabi, Ajami’. The description of the ahlus-Suffa’ was that of men who did not work but stayed next to the Prophet’s house in order to learn from him and in that you see them as part of society, only functioning in a unique way, but not outside of it. The reality of Ihsan, that shaykh Hasan al-Basri was talking about cannot, of course, disappear or re-appear but its manifestation in doctrine and practice indicates a more general change in society. Continue reading “Miskῑn”