Maulana Khalid Dhorat
When business is bad, and believe me it’s tough out there, then here is an excellent business opportunity for you. It’s called Peeri-Muridee, and here is an 8-step easy guide to fabulous riches:
- You need to be a male in your 40’s, with a huge beard, preferably white or flaming red, with a huge exotic-coloured turban on your head;
- You cannot trade in your own country because you will be easily identified. For maximum profits, you must be prepared to travel worldwide, never staying for more than a week at any destination;
- You need the gift of the gab. Take a course in psychology or voice modulation as this will be your best asset. You also need some credibility, so you will maybe have a fake certificate from a Madasah, and a pair of fake sandals of your own Shaikh that you never seen in your dreams too;
- You have to become a “Sayyid,” or forge a birth certificate saying that you are a Naqshbandi, or a Qadri, and that your grandfather was the water-carrier of A’la Hazrat;
- You need to “look” pious and be prepared to wake up for tahajjud daily. However, you may sleep the entire day and even skip the Zuhr and ‘Asr prayers. You also need to have a huge sandal-wood tasbeeh in your hand and visit the dentist for a teeth-whitening treatment. Paan or cigarette stains are a put-off;
- In order to attract customers, you either need a ghost-busting Jinn to help you, a beautiful voice to enchant others, a bit of scribbling experience to write fake taweezes (amulets), and some rare phrases from the works of Rumi or Sa’di to sweep the rich and gullible off their feet with phrases you don’t even know the meaning of;
- You need to know exactly the weaknesses of the Muslims in terms of their belief and practice according to the area they live in. Wealthy areas are the best places to target where people are normally most gullible and ignorant. If you don’t know this, you will not know how to bait your hook, either with a mielie bomb or a worm, to trap your victim;
- Lastly, you must be a real charmer and be able to convince any woman, even if her husband disagrees with her. The way to a man’s wallet is via his wife’s confusion!
Now, before anyone says that I’m against the pure science of tazkiyah and tasawwuf (the science of purifying the heart), let me state that an obvious fact: just like how you have genuine doctors and quack doctors, you also have genuine Murshids (spiritual guides), and fake one’s. These are called “Shark Sahibs.” They are becoming very popular nowadays because people don’t know what the role of a Murshid or a Peer is anymore. Our ignorance of their function in the spiritual realm has made them target our wallets, and not our hearts anymore.
The purpose of a genuine Murshid is to identify our spiritual weaknesses and guide us on the path of purity, ultimately reaching our Creator with a sound heart. A spiritual disciple (mureed) is asked to complete certainzikrs (incantations) daily, and confide his personal, business and social problems to his Murshid so he may be guided to do the correct thing. He is introduced to the Greatness and Uniqueness of his Creator, and is asked to emulate the example of the Noble Master, Prophet Muhammad (may peace be upon him) in all facets of life. Questions pertaining to life, birth, death, the unseen, and the secrets of the Almighty’s workings – issues which cannot be attained from any university, – is normally to be attained whilst being humbly seated at the feet of a Murshid.
But, the above function sounds pretty boring. Who wants to attend school after spending 13 years at school? Adults are trailblazers, they don’t need to be told what to do, they do whatever they want to do. So, aMurshid, for us, doesn’t translate into entering into a binding contract to lead our lives with pious discipline, but a shortcut to Paradise. Worst still, we think it’s a back-door entry into Paradise! We can do any wrong or commit any amount of sins, our Murshid will be there to save us! This concept of “salvation guarantee” is very wrong.
For most of us, a Murshid is there to be revered, and to be massaged to attain his blessings. He is supposed to perform some karaamats (miracles) and have kashf (inner illumination), know something of the unseen, and be able to extract “hidden” meanings from the Qur’an. The most dangerous, self-defeating belief that we have is that we, the ordinary masses, are gross sinners and are unable to reach our Creator on our own, or get our prayers answered. For these things, we are in need of an intermediary, a pious man called a Sheikh or Peer Sahib, who will get us close to our Creator if given unconditional obedience. Our Peer Sahib is our passport to paradise, we just need to give him the best type of jalebi (sweetmeats) daily.
This ignorance and our own lack of faith, or wrong concept of it, has led many Peer Sahibs to make such ridiculous claims such as:
- When you take the bai’at (oath of allegiance) at his hands, he becomes your representative to your Creator, your official lawyer. So, at the time of death, he will be there to recite the shahaadah(testimony of faith) on your behalf, he will be there to answer the three questions in the grave posed by the fearsome angels, and he will take your hands and lead you straight into paradise;
- He claims to be present, in body and shape, in several places at a time. He also claims to perform several miracles, including producing two moons in one night, being able to converse with the dead, and being excused from praying in the nearest Masjid, as his soul migrates to Makkah five times a day;
- He exaggerates in the virtue of certain verses. For example, he says: ““Whoever recites this ayah even a single time, will attain the rank of a certain saint.” He also makes Islam very simple by saying: “You are leading a very hectic life and you are very weak. Just choose one Sunnat a day, and it will be suffice for you.”
- If you cannot complete your devotions for the day (some Peer Sahibs require daily SMS notifications at a certain time), then you can confess it to him without fear. He can forgive you for it, or even adjust your religion to suit your life!
This type of blind following has placed the Peer Sahib above the Qur’an and Sunnah, making him near-divine and creating a rival with the Creator Himself. We no more open the Qur’an and study, or do some religious studies, Peer Sahib is our crutch. He knows everything! We neeed to realize that our Creator is nearer to us than our own “jugular veins,” and even the biggest of sinners need only left their hand in sincere repentance to be heard by the Creator Himself. Peer Sahib doesn’t know himself whether he is going to heaven or hell, how will he take you to paradise? As for performing miracles like flying in the air and walking on water, these are done effortlessly by birds and fish. Flying or swimming are not signs of piety, anybody can do so if they practice, rather piety and strict adherence to Islam are.
As Peer Sahib becomes accustomed to easy money in his religious fraud, his “consultation fees” also becomes more. As he gains the trust of people, he even becomes more important to them than their own spouse or parents. He commands wives to travel with him to foreign places without the permission and the accompaniment of their husbands, they ask brothers to break ties with each other, and threaten “bad luck” and “divine punishment” if any of his orders are disobeyed! He studies your responses before the time, and answers all your misgivings even before you can ask him!
And when a rival Peer Sahib arrives in town, then it’s an all-out turf war! In fact, many fake Peer Sahibs have made much wealth for themselves by proving the falsity of other fake Peer Sahibs, and diverting all the money from them to him. Such trickery only comes from much experience, and recognizing such trickery by the people also only comes from experience.
And who said Peer Sahibs cannot be professional? Some even have rate lists. If you want them to pray for a son, its R2000-00, for blessings in business, its R5000-00, and to keep your wife young forever, R8000-00! Of course, a small damm (blowing) would at least expect a small gift like a box of Ferreros in return! These scam artists paint the “Men of the Cloth” in bad colours, yet, people fall for them all the time, hook, line and sinker!
Finally, we need to realize that no one can have a relationship or be an intermediary with our Creator, besides oneself. We cannot “outsource” salvation. This is a deeply personal and sacred matter. The fact that people are so involved in it shows how superstitious they are. Such people are trapped in a spider web. The punishment for those who don’t have correct faith is that they will catch a man who stole his R1-00 in his shop, but he will not be able to see the man who is stealing his millions, and destroying his paradise with his own money. And he still thinks he is the most wise man!