By Abdul Shaheed Azhary
These eleven lines are regarded as the preface of the book. The entire book is designed for those who want to get success in the next world. One has to prepare himself to obtain this goal. First step is to make his inner feelings and thoughts clear of any kind of dirts and the vices. The easiest way to do so is to adopt one of the pious Muslim(Sheikh) as his master, and obey his commands and rulings.
Here comes the complexity of such a way. As per Islamic belief only prophets are infallibles. Without doubt the prophet Muhammad (S.A.S) is infallible and unerring. Then only way is to discover a sheikh who strictly follows the Prophet Muhammad (S.A.S) and apply his Sharia’ in his life.
One who is veteran in sharia’ is called faqeeh, or jurist. Hundreds of books compiled explaining different aspects of fiqh. Four major schools of thought formed thorough out Islamic history with the name ‘Mad-hab’. They are Hanafi, Shafi, Maliki, and Hanbali. Detailed study of Mad-hab is the beyond scope of this book.
According to author, only faqeeh(jurist) is entitled to be a sheikh. His knowledge of fiqh should be applied practically in his life. Tariqah means to get some easy way to enforce and apply the knowledge of fiqh in his life. Eventually he may reach Haqiqah, the core of tasawwuf. One of the major misconceptions about tariqah is that it is the short cut to the way of Allah, without the care of Sharia’. In fact, tariqah is the short cut way to apply sharia in the practical life.
What is tariqah? Popular thought is that it is following a sheikh and obeying his rules and commands. The author comes with different thought. Tariqah may be educating people, serving them, increasing prayer and fasting and so on.
Haqiqah is not easy to catch. If the hard work is the pre-requisite of tariqah, the special care and tawfeeq from Allah is the prerequisite of Haqiqah. It is hard to dive in the sea and discover pearl in the depth, yet all the experts in diving may not find the pearl.
Before entering into the core of the book, the author clarifies that what he is going to explain is the way of awliya, the saints of Islam who attained the rank of wilayh. One who wants to obtain this rank should be careful of these following instructions.
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