TRANSFORMATIONS

Compiled By: Hajj Mustafa Ali

Preface

We are travelers in this life, we have come on this journey from before endless timelessness and we are going on to the here-after endless timelessness.  In between there is a realm of experience designed and created to impress on the traveler the path and meaning of his or her existence.  Everyone's story reflects the one and only story that has in it the message and purpose of this vast creation.  Each one of us is a microcosm in perfect reflection of the macrocosm.  We are each one of us the center of the universe.  It is in our proclamation of “I”  that we articulate the key to its meaning and at the same time its darkest veil.

The reality, Allah, says on the blessed tongue of the Prophet Muhammad S.A.A.W., in a hadith Quddsi, in so many words that “I was a treasure unknown.  I wanted to be known so I manifested the creation to be known”.  We have come here for one purpose only, that is for knowledge. The highest knowledge is that of the self, its meaning and purpose.

From the very beginning of human experience there has existed two distinct systems, one opposite to the other. The first being that of guidance through mercy and the other one of ignorance and covering up.  It is these two dynamics systems that shape, evolve and eventually dictate the final outcome of human experience both on the gross and subtle levels, individually experienced and experienced by humanity as a whole.

Knowledge is our destiny. It has been written for us before we came into this world. It is waiting in front of us at any given moment. The whole of Allah’s creation is beaming out in every direction wanting to fill our hearts with its message, our minds with inspiration and useful knowledge and our limbs with right actions. We are swimming in a sea of mercy, asking only for our gratitude and submission. Not for itself, but for you, so it can fulfill its promise on you to bring you up to your highest potential as a human being. We do not have to add it to our lives. It can not be bought or acquired.  These are materialistic concepts quantitative in nature.  It has to be discovered, uncovered within us, through reflection and reason.  Our blessed Imam Jaffar As-Sasdiq Said A.S.  “Consider the nature of the apes, its resemblance with man in most of its physical features, that is, the head, the face, the shoulders, the chest, the guts and so on.  Furthermore, in its cleverness and sagacity by means of which it comprehends the gestures of its trainer, there is a lesson for man about himself as he is made aware that he has a nature and origin not unlike that of animals.  To be sure, with this close resemblance, had it not been for Allah’s grace in giving him the merit of reason and articulation man would have remained a beast;  since the decisive distinction between the ape and the man is the possession of reason, intellect and speech.”

It is in our animal nature that connects us with this world and it is the “grace”  of reason, intellect and speech that by its nature separates us from the animals and places in us a sense of otherness.  It is by this sense of otherness that drives us to seek unification in our every action.

Allah says in the Qur`an:

Allah has not made two hearts within the breast of man.

Today the illusion of east and west, north and south, black and white, rich or poor melts under the shattering reality that those on both sides of the hemisphere we call earth, hold within their very finger tips the fate of the world.  As a race we are no longer talking about regional conflicts, but total world destruction.  Past is the time where a journey from one end of the world to the other was a life long ambition.  Today it is only a matter of picking up the phone and being there the next day and in some cases in a matter of hours.  Each area of our lives has speeded up to match each rising desire.  Fast food, instant communications, faster travel.  Instant gratification has become the name of the game.  Faster the better.  We have taken this code of life to every aspect of our lives.  We no longer have time to reflect on the nature of ourselves, we have become too busy avoiding those moments of constriction when the object of desire is distant and patience is the needed remedy.  So when mental discomfort arises in us or our emotions emerge and disturb us we shove them down with a pill, tranquilizer or stimulant whatever works for us to not experience our own desperation and fears.  We have come down a road that by its nature perpetuates dissatisfaction and discontent.  There is no end to desire.  It is the moving principal of this world.

Allah says on the blessed tongue of the prophet Muhammad, “That the whole universe cannot contain me, but the heart of the mu'min contains me”.  Here in this most profound illustration the reality speaks to us about the nature of our hearts and its immeasurable quality.  It is the nature and purpose of the heart to be for Allah only, empty of all else.  If you were for a moment to quantify it and imagine it as a vast expense, whatever you put into it would vanish in its immensity.  Nothing could fulfill it.

From time immemorial man travels through cycles of experience, spiraling through time in an evolutionary movement to his final evolvement and splendor as beings of knowledge and submission.  This is his heritage, nothing else will due.

It is a mercy from God that He has designed into His creation and our experience dissatisfaction.

It is through this dissatisfaction that the seeder begins to question himself.  Who am I?  Where am I going?  Why must it all end in my death.  When these questions are sincerely asked and reflected upon it acts as the fire in an alchemists pot to fuse and transform what were once diverse elements into the golden light of realization.  That we have come from an all merciful source and that we will return to it.  Along the way through this journey we call life we relish and worship the pristine harmony of plan and purpose.  Finding meaning in every atom of experience both outwardly and inwardly.  We become intoxicated by the awesome design and surrender our limitedness to the limitless and our sense of self to the one who is beyond description.  From here on in on this path we forget only to remember we stumble only to learn the road.  We become dissatisfied only to submit it to His wisdom and practice gratitude and patience.  We love only to experience the pain of separation that drives us to love a beloved who is never away from us.  We hate only to overcome our own expectations and hate those things that stand in the way of seeing His hand in every action and state.  We eat to fill the hunger in our stomachs only to go on being brought out of ignorance and into the light of remembrance.  We remember Him only to justify the existence of our bodies' purpose to be instruments of His divine decree.

In the following pages you will journey through the experiences of those who have had the courage to ask themselves these most profound questions we had mentioned earlier on.  You will witness the hand of guidance in each event and see them woven together in purpose and meaning.

It is my intention in writing this book to heart-fully communicate to those of like heart and mind, that God in all His mercy does not waste anything that all of our experience in life is like fertile ground in which the seeds of wisdom can be grown.  All of us who have come from the four corners of the world, each through our own varied backgrounds have verified and shared the wonderful recognition of the unity of purpose in the seeming diverse experiences of our lives.  So when our new brother Muslim from America meets the new Muslim from South Africa, a Zulu warrior, they need not speak the same language or have gone to the same school.  The hearts recognize each other and through the greeting common to all Muslims, “As Salam Aliekum”  (peace be upon you) they connect to a chain of living transmission that dates back to the emergence of the first human being able to recognize his eternal source from which he came.

As the rain falls from the sky upon the mountain tops every drop turns into a trickle then into a creek, into a river traveling through diverse areas of this world they all find their way back to the source from which they came.

Author's Note: "Open Invitation"

This is an ongoing project.  We invite anyone who has had similar experiences to share them with us.  Our intention is to communicate and network with other like hearted people from all parts of the world.  As our communication grows so will our ability to reach others grows and our Iman will expand and touch others who are seeking guidance and conformation of their experiences.  As we receive your stories, we will update this publication adding them to it.

If you have any questions please feel free to contact me.  I will answer any letter concerning this project or anything to do with furthering communication, networking and educating each other about this most glorious path. 

I look forward to hearing from you!