by Sheikh Rislan al-Dimashqi
In the Name of Allah,
All-Merciful, the All-Compassionate
Praise be to Allah
Now then, know that the whole of you
is covert polytheism [shirkun khafiyyun] and your
realization-and-affirmation-of-Oneness [tawhid] will not become evident
to you until you exit from you[rself].
Provided you are sincere, it will be disclosed to you that it is He,
not you, so you must ask forgiveness for you. And whenever you
encounter [any form of it], your own polytheism [shirk] will be evident
to you. You must therefore renew, in every hour and at every moment, an
affirmation-of-Oneness [tawhid] and a faith [iman]. And whenever you
become detached from them your faith will increase; and whenever you
become detached from you, your certitude [yaqin] will increase.
O prisoner of desires and formal acts of worship, O prisoner of
stations and revelations! You are deluded and you are preoccupied with
you. Where is your preoccupation with Him to the exclusion of you? He
is Present and Attentive, "and He is with you wherever you may be," in
this world and the hereafter. When you are with Him, He screens you
from you, and when you are with you, He screens you from Him.
Faith is your separating from them, and certitude is your separating
from you. When your faith has increased, you will be transported from
state to state; and when your certitude has increased, you will be
transported from station to station.
The Sacred Law [Shari'a] is for you, until you seek Him from Him for
you; and the Reality [Haqiqa] belongs to Him, until you seek Him
through Him for Him, beyond when and beyond where, for the Sacred Law
does have limits [hudud] and modes [jihat], but the Reality has neither
limit nor mode.
One who lives with the Sacred Law [alone] is given the privilege of
striving [mujahada] and one who lives with the Reality is given the
privilege of grace [minna]. How great is the contrast between striving
One who lives with striving is existent [mawjud], while one who lives
with grace is extinct [mafqud].
Practices are linked to the noble Law [Shar']. As for total trust in
the Lord [tawakkul], this is linked to faith [iman], and the
realization-and-affirmation-of-Oneness [tawhid] is linked to
illuminating disclosure [kashf].
People wander astray from the Lord of Truth because of the mind, and
from the hereafter because of passion. For, when you seek the Lord of
Truth with the mind, you lose the way, and when you seek the hereafter
with passion, you stumble and slip.
The believer sees by the light of Allah, and one who has direct
knowledge [al-'arif] beholds Him by it.
"As long as you are with you, We command you. Then, once you have been
rendered extinct to you, We take charge of you." For He does not take
charge of them until after their annihilation [in Him].
As long as you continue, you are a seeker [murid]. Then, when He has
made you extinct to you, you are one who is sought [murad].
The most lasting certainty is your absence from you and your presence
with Him. What a big difference there is between what is at His command
and what is because of Him! If you are at His command, worldly means
will be subservient to you. And if you are because of Him, the whole
universe will be submissive to you.