Archive for January, 2013

Everything I have learned so far about myself, God, and the world around me can be found by reading, listening to, reflecting on, and embracing the following three chapters (surah) of the Qur’an:

Surah Qaf [“The Chapter of the Letter Q,” chapter 50]

Surah al-Hadid [“The Chapter of Iron,” chapter 57]

Surah al-Taghabun [“The Chapter of Mutual Neglect,” chapter 64]

That is the best that I am able to give to any other soul at this point in my life. Everything I have ever written and every speech I have ever made, if put on one end of a scale, would not equal one verse from one of these chapters.


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I am so fallen.

What gift could be better than لا إله إلا الله by which all things seen and unseen are possible?!

And yet even though I say these words, my heart tells me that there is still something more precious to be gained.

All that has ever been desired resides in these words, but I am more preoccupied with something else.

My tongue lies on behalf of an honest heart.

This is the truth of me – a bitter truth, for any worshipper can see the error in it.

I am attached to the gifts.


I am so sorry for my weakness.

Please look with Mercy on this fallen soul,

and protect him from his own self.

Grant that I may taste the sweet nectar of Your Name, which drives away all delusion.

لا إله إلا الله : A phrase sublime in its meaning, brief in its construction, vast in its effect, noble in its rank, brilliant in its light, and unique in its merit. It comprises four words upon which the Faith is founded and the direction of prayer set. This is the phrase that was given in every Book sent down by God to every one of His noble Messengers, and through which one is rescued from the infernal fires and wins eternal happiness in the Gardens. God the Exalted has said: “Know that there is no God but God” (47.19); “I am God, there is no god but Me, so worship Me!” (20.14); “God, there is no god but He, the Living, the Sustainer” (2.255); “God, there is no god but He, to Him belong the Most Beautiful Names” (20.8); and “We sent no Messenger before you without revealing to him: ‘There is no God but Me, so worship Me'” (21.25). Through sound belief and certainty in its meaning, and by submission to it, one attains to faith (iman). By uttering it with sincerity, and truly acting in accordance with it, submission (islam) results. By joining sound belief with submission to its authority there dawns in the heart the reality of excellence (ihsan). – Habib Ahmad Mashhur al-Haddad [“Key to the Garden,” p. 3]

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