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Living the Spirit of Hajj

Alhamdulillah a lot of people either know people who are going for Hajj and are asking for duas. While the people who are leaving are asking others to forgive them. Even right now there might be so many mu’mineen going for Hajj in the airplanes. Although, maybe most of our listeners fall into the other category who are unable to go on Hajj.

Those who are unable to go for Hajj – how should they spend this month?

When you are a mu’mineen you have to use all of your efforts to feel more emotions. One aspect of people is their emotions. When a person has Imaan he has more strong emotions. When we reach this month of Hajj and we are unable to go then we feel a longing. That longing which we feel for kaaba and Allah swt, the mashaikh don’t want these feelings to go to waste.

One thing should be made clear that it is not a biddah to do something in the ayyam e Hajj even if you are not going. Don’t think that Rasool Allah sws did not give any specific guidelines for those who didn’t go for Hajj so why should we do it? The thing is that we are allowed and in fact it is preferable for us to make any effort in our deen because we are already struggling in our deen.

You cannot do contrary to sunnah. But inevitably a person will eventually end up doing things that is other than sunnah. For example, a person tries to learn Arabic Language. Prophet sws never said to us to study Arabic. So if someone goes to that person and says that no you are doing biddah. Show me the hadith where Prophet sws told us to study Arabic? You would say that is non-sense. I’m studying Arabic because I don’t know the language. Similarly, this is just another way to develop our deen.

Any time you have any positive emotion, you should use and channel that positive emotion for the sake of Allah swt. If a person is unable to go for Hajj but they are feeling a feeling in their heart then use this feeling for some positive.

Whenever a person gets a positive emotion from Imaan it is very important to act on those feelings. A big mistake we make is we delay to act and at times completely don’t act at all. For example, you look at a person leaving for Hajj and you feel sad because you think had I gone I would have made this, this, this dua. If you feel this way then just go ahead and do it. Just make that dua. When we get a thought we follow it. If we get an impulse we do it. We should delay the bad or sinful feelings. But we should react immediately to a good feeling.

In Quran Allah swt talks about a particular kind of stinginess that is Shoh. Shoh comes when a person has already decided to do a good deed but then decides to do less. This happens because of their nafs. This can be in the case of charity. Like a person decides to give 2000 in charity, but then he has second thoughts and take out a 1000 note and eventually giving less. The same things can also happen in the case of emotions when nafs can make us postpone doing something about the positive feeling. Rather we should jump on top of that feeling.

Then we also have this feeling we have gone so far away from Ramadan that even Shawwaal has passed. Did I make up the 6 fasts? Did I make up the other fasts? So in Zulqada we have the feeling of Zulhajja. Those who are going have another thing to look forward to. We should feel the calendar. We should regret moving away from Ramadan but also feel good that we are moving closer to Hajj.

What should we do in these months now?

Two major areas we need to work on are

  1. Effort
  2. Desire

We should be working on both of them. This is the principle of tasawwuf that a person keeps moving from suhbah (company) to zikr, suhbah to zikr. When you get more desire, do more effort. When you lose the effort, work on getting more desire. If we stop having both then we stop moving towards Allah swt. And we should never want to be in that direction. Sometimes shaytaan and dunya gets us slow such that we find ourselves stopping by the time we reach Zulqada. We should go back somewhere and get the desire. Getting that desire is suhbah.

Why do we need company of the pious? Why do we need these bayan? Why do we need taleem? We need it to revive our hearts with desire. We always have to keep that desire because we must keep wanting Allah swt. We must never let ourselves stop wanting Allah swt. When we stop wanting Allah swt, gradually or suddenly, then Allah swt still keeps wanting us. But if we keep on not wanting Allah swt, not wanting a desire to increase in ibaadah then there will come a point when Allah swt will stop wanting us. Then there will be nothing for us in the world. We will be in utter loss.

If you look at it then you will see that Hajj is also an expression of want – a greatest want for Allah swt. We want Him so badly that we don’t care how we look or that we are unkempt. We want Him so much we are willing to let go of our families, our lifestyle for Him. If we have such a feeling then we should think that we want Allah swt so badly that we can leave sin. We can leave disobedience. We can leave everything; all the unlawful emotions, all the unlawful relations. You see, when a person starts wanting Allah swt then they don’t want that human company, they don’t want that sms. They don’t wait for that email. The less we desire Allah swt the more we would want these things.

Once, someone called our Shykh in front of us. That person was trying to express how much he wants and loves the Shaykh. Shaykh said what if I were to tell you that I have no desire for you at all? Ultimately all the auliya Allah only desire Allah swt. Probably our SHaykh was correcting that person that he should love for Allah’s sake. Any other love, personal love, has no value. Shaykh also has no need or desire to love anyone who sits in his suhbah for his own sake. But he does love those who sit in his suhbah for the sake of Allah swt. If we for some reason let someone else creep into our desires then we should take it as a sign that our desire for Allah swt has decreased. At times we may love someone for Allah’s sake and for our own sake also. We have to work really hard to make it only for Allah’s sake.

1st ayah: Very interesting thing that Allah swt in Quran has mentioned that when a person makes effort for Him Allah swt immediately rewards the person with Karam and Rehmat. So for example, we are razi and pleased with Allah swt. We did effort in being razi. Then Allah swt becomes razi with that person instantly. There’s no delay.

2nd ayah: There’s another ayah that says those who strive to please Us We will immediately guide to them many paths. Allah swt will open up more paths to be pleasing to Allah swt. Allah swt will guide him deep into the ways that are pleasing to Him.

3rd ayah: make zikr of me and I will make zikr of you. Here too we have to make zikr first. Reality is our tongue is not worthy of taking the name of Allah swt. Heart is not worthy of taking His name. The way we have been allowed by commanding us to do is actually His mercy. Allah swt says if you do zikr of Me then I will do zikr of you. If we make effort, Allah swt will reward that effort instantly. This is the way of Allah swt.

4th ayah: In another ayah Allah swt talks about desire: Allah swt loves the believers (first) and they desire me. I seek you out Myself and after that you will seek Me out. This is the beauty and the mercy of Allah swt that He wants us even before we want Him.

Then how can we not want Him? This is human nature that when a person wants us, inevitably we would also love them. How difficult is it to love that Allah swt who already loves you? Allah swt because of our Iman loves the believers. So the mo’mineen in the same way should be intense in their love for Allah swt. So that is the way we should be.

The most intense manifestation of that love is to feel that intensity and to manifest it and make the same duas, the same pledges, same changes in our lives that we would have made had we gone for Hajj this year. May we always be able to channel that positive emotion and may we always be able to turn towards Him.

Shaykh Kamaludeen

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