THE WISDOM OF IBN ATA'ALLAH
Translation and Commentary by Shaykh
Let not the
intention of your aspiration pass to other-than-Him, for ones hopes
cannot bypass the (One) Generous.
Whoever reaches the
shores of Tawheed will restrict all attention and concern to
the One Ocean. Once you bathe in the Source spring the secondary
streams and rivulets will be of no interest. He is the
self-sufficient and origin of all gifts, generosities and nothing
ever can surpass or overtake Him.
Do not depart from
one sphere (state or experience) to another; otherwise you will be
like a donkey at the mill turning round and round. The place he
travels to is the same as he travelled from. Thus, travel, rather,
from creations to the Creator: And that the final end is to thy
Lord[53:42]. Consider the words: Therefore he whose departure is
for Allah and His messenger, then his departure is for Allah and His
messenger. And he whose departure is for worldly achievement or
marriage with a woman, then his departure is for that which he
flees. So understand his words, peace be upon him, and reflect
upon this if you understand.
Who you are and what
you experience relates to your intentions, actions, companions and
the overall potential and seriousness. If one's real intention and
desire is for the knowledge of Truth, then the journey will remove
veils and barriers until the arrival at source and origin. Allah's
mercy always reflects the extent of our clarity and resolve in our
intentions and actions. It is utter misguidance to seek sustained
joy in this world of turmoil and change.
Do not accompany
anyone whose state does not elevate you, and whose speech does not
guide you to Allah.
The choice of
wholesome companionship is of constant concern to the seeker and
teacher alike. Keep company with the one who reminds of Allah when
you see him and leads you to Him when you hear him and will
transform you when you obey him. Just as you are affected by the
quality of air that you breathe, so are you affected by the company
you keep except that it is more subtle and thus affects the heart
instead of nose and lungs.
You may have been
a wrongdoer, but by accompanying someone whose state is worse than
yours you see virtue in yourself.
The nature of the
lower self is to always seek affirmation, gratification and
acknowledgement. If you do not contain and restrict this weed it
will take over the whole of the garden in your heart. Keeping
company with those who are less illumined than you will hinder your
spiritual progress by pleasing the self in seeing itself more
advanced. They may progress by your example but you will regress by