Changing of Masters & the Concensus of the True Sheikhs
Insha’allah, we are about to speak on a very important subject. We are going to talk on Tariqa Orders (Sufi Orders). So many people come to Damascus from different countries in order to visit us. Some of them already belong to a sheikh and a Tariqat order. They are now asking for new Bayyat from us. One of them, Sheikh Salahuddin, is finding conflict in himself about this. This is why we have to make clear to everyone all over the world so they may know as to what is Tariqat, who is a sheikh, how many Sheikhs may one follow, and what the relation of Sheikhs to each other is.
Allah Almighty will ask from everyone on the Last Day, “What did you bring today, oh My servant? Did you bring Qalb-us-Saleem, a pure heart, a golden, precious heart?” Allah Almighty is asking from everyone to have a clean heart. You may make it pure only through tariqat orders. Those without tariqat are only occupying themselves with the outer life and leaving out the heart.
There are 41 tariqats (Sufi Orders). Forty (40) of them springing from the heart of Imam Ali, and one (1), the Naqshabandi order, coming from the heart of Abu Bakr as-Siddiq, (may Allah be pleased with them). The Prophet had 124,000 companions. Who was the Grand companion? It was Abu Bakr. The Prophet said, “The whole of what Allah entrusted to me on the Night Journey I put into the heart of Abu Bakr.” Sayyidina Ali was connected to Abu Bakr in such a way as to make Ali the entrance of the City of Knowledge. This is well known among the real tariqat Sheikhs. They respect the Naqshbandi Order as the first one. I am talking about the real Sheikhs, not of those giving titles to themselves.
All of the Great Sheikhs, Jilani, Rumi, Darqawi, Rifai, knew the real station of the Naqshabandi order. If a person is following one of these other tariqats, they may take Tariqat Naqshabandiya also and remain free to follow those exercises or follow the Naqshabandiya exercises. If also they only follow the Naqshabandi exercises it is enough. It doesn’t matter whether you are coming from another Tariqat into the Naqsahbandi Order. Some fear that their first Sheikh will hear they have taken a second tariqat and be angry with them. If he is a real Sheikh, how can he be angry? A real Sheikh must know if his mureed was given to him on the Day of Promises or not. A shepherd knows his sheep, even one from a thousand and even if they are all white. He has light in his eyes and recognizes them without mistake.
In Tariqat there is no sorrow or anger if any mureed goes to another Sheikh. We are thankful to the first Sheikh for training him until he reaches his real Sheikh. Abu Yazid al Bistami said, “During my search, I met 99 sheikhs before reaching my Grandsheikh.” You may meet so many Sheikhs and take exercises, but you may not find satisfaction until you find your Grandsheikh and then it is like a river meeting the Ocean. So many Sheikhs are only trainers, but finally a Grandsheikh must call you. Not by letters but from heart to heart. There are ways. If a Naqshabandi Sheikh is giving tariqat, he must tell the mureed who the Grandsheikh for the Naqshbandi Order is in this time. He must point out to him.
So many people from the West are coming now invited by the way of hearts, to our Grandsheikh. The chain of Sheikhs ends in one. Our Grandsheikh is the last link in the Golden Chain and he is holding that position. I am only his servant. As for the other Naqshabandi Sheikhs, we are waiting for them to renew their Bayyat with us or else they are only putting on titles for themselves.
Seyyadina Muhammad Mahdi alaihi salam and his seven (7) Grand Wazirs, his ninety nine (99) Caliphas and the three hundred and thirteen (313) Grand Murshids are all from the Naqshabandi Tariqat. In this time, there is no power for other tariqats to carry people all the way to the ultimate goal. All are invited to renew Bayyat to our Grandsheikh and then they may observe their improvement. In our time, there may be one thousand (1000) Naqsahbandi Sheikhs, but there is only one Grandsheikh bringing them all together and he is the Imam. If you bring the 124,000 Sahaba together, who is the Imam? It is Abu Bakr as Siddique (ral).
Each Sheikh must appoint one Deputy. Mevlana Khalid Baghdadi appointed Sheikh Ismail, but so many Naqshbandi Orders lost him in their Silsila (Chain of Spiritual Transmission) and lost also the secret of our Grandsheikh. Now there are so many Naqshabandi Sheikhs in Damacus, Aleppo and Homs who can’t find a successor. Except for our Grandsheikh, no one has pointed to a Deputy. This is because we have Sheikh Ismail in our Silsila.
If my Grandsheikh’s power would fully appear, no one could be sitting here; but that tremendous guiding and directing power (Irshad) is being stored up for the time of Sayyidina Al-Mahdi. At that time, al other Tariqats will be engulfed by the huge irshad – power carried through the Naqshbandiyya Tariqat – they will be engulfed like inland seas being absorbed into a great ocean. Other Tariqats are already all slowly grinding to a halt, not moving forward. Since no Grandsheikhs are appearing among them, all that is left of them is their saying, “Follow this Tariqat or that one.” Since no Grandsheikhs are now appearing among them, they are only imitating what they found their predecessors practicing, without being able to improve – like soldiers marching in place.
(A person in attendance commented) : “Some of the Sheikhs of the other Tariqats are angry at you for your making such statements; they think that you are making Naqshbandi politics, trying to take away their disciples.”
(Sheikh Nazim replied) : Don’t speak foolish words. They may scream, “Politics!” and they may be angry, but they must know that what we are saying is reality, not politics; for we hate politics. If they have real spiritual knowledge (Maanawi Ulum), then they may see the reality of what we are saying; if not, they may be angry – but their anger is useless. Now, the Last Prophet, Muhammad (sal), is present in the spiritual realm and for the Awliya there is an assembly with the Prophet’s Presence every night. If they are there, they may realize and know; if not, then they are only with us – not seeing what will happen and not seeing the reality of what happens now. If the latter is the case, then they are only looking at books and talking, and you can’t know these things like that – no, that knowledge is distinct, it comes by way of the hearts.
When you are mentioning the names of persons, we may know whether they are inside or outside. In the time of Abdul-Qadir Al-Jilani, a great Grandsheikh, there was another sheikh who heard about him and said to his pupils : “I have heard so much about this Sheikh Abdul-Qadir, but I have been waiting at the entrance of Allah Almighty’s Power Castle for thirty years, and up until now I haven’t seen him entering or leaving, so how is it that they are saying he is such a huge Sheikh?” When Abdul-Qadir heard this, he laughed and said: “How can a doorkeeper know who sits in the presence of the King, in the proximity of the Majestic Lord?”
And so, you may find so many Tariqat Sheikhs, but their levels are different. So why are they angry? Do they claim to know everything? What we have stated we know from the Heavenly Assembly, and that knowledge is coming to us from the ‘central power station’, so that if they bring forward a statement, claim or knowledge, we know from where they are bringing it. If anyone is angry because of these things, he is providing proof that he is not from the Assembly of Awliya; but he who says, “I believe in this and more,” you must know that he is from within.
Al Tariqats teach people humbleness and to accept the truth. Who accompanied the Prophet when he made his migration (Hijra) from Mecca to Medina? – Abu Bakr. And what did the Prophet say about Abu Bakr? – “Everything My Lord put into my heart, I have put into the heart of Abu Bakr.” Which Sheikh can come to argue with us saying, “Abu Bakr is our father in Tariqat”? (Only the Naqshbandiyya Tariqat traces its lineage back to the Prophet through Abu Bakr, the rest of the Tariqats came through Sayyidina Ali). Grandsheikh is the inheritor of Abu Bakr – only ignorant people can deny this..