Archive for November, 2018

Perhaps someone somewhere has explained this better than I can, but I wanted to share what I consider to be the supreme profundity of our simple dhikr: Subhan Allah Alhamdulillah La ilaha ill Allah Allahu akbar.


سبحان الله – Subhan Allah

Subhan Allah means that nothing is like Allah. Anything you see, hear, smell, taste, feel is different from Allah. Allah is transcendent above all of our embodied experience.

الحمد لله – Alhamdulillah

Alhamdulillah, on the other hand, is related to everything. Anything that you can conceptualize is from Allah, and thus all praise for everything in all existence belongs to Allah. There is no wanting something that is not, in the final analysis, wanting Allah, for that which is praiseworthy in that thing could not be there without Allah. Thus, Subhan Allah and Alhamdulillah are two sides of the same coin.

لا إله إلا الله – La ilaha ill Allah

If Subhan Allah was metaphorically like pushing Allah away from everything you can conceptualize, and Alhamdulillah was like bringing Allah as close as possible to everything, then La ilaha ill Allah is the stripping away of that distinction. Is there conceptualization without the Knower of everything sharing a drop of knowledge? Is there an existent world without the Living sharing a drop of life? Is there something to experience, and an experiencer to experience it, that is ever, for even a single moment, independent of Allah?

الله أكبر – Allahu akbar

Subhan Allah was based on the plain understanding that Allah is unlike the creation. Alhamdulillah flipped that observation on its head, and made the creation reveal the Creator at every moment. La ilaha ill Allah erased the distinction entirely. Allahu akbar brings us back into a relationship, where beyond every horizon there is something greater. Where the furthest limits of our imagination cannot reach. For no matter what I say, or do, or experience, or think, or imagine, or want…Allah is always greater than that.

So the next time you repeat these four phrases, try to remember that this simple dhikr is an expression of all that ever was, is, or will be.


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there is no me

it is a secret, writ large

there is no me


maybe if i die soon

these words will last for a hundred years more

the tragic end of a seeker

who still had so much more to explore


vanity. pure vanity.


for there is no me


a million years from now

if there are still humans in the universe

even these words will be gone

and were you there to see it

the only reason you would even know i had been there

is a distant memory


for i exist only in the Mind of God

in the Knowing of past-present-future

in the Garden-time and Fire-time

in the forever

in the always


and these eyes have already rotted in my grave

and these fingers are nothing but bones

and would you send me your salams

you would not hear my reply


unless God permitted it


for i am already gone


there is no me

there is only Mercy and Justice

there is only the Garden and the Fire

there are only the Friends and their supporters

and the Enemy and those who acted on the whispers


kun fa yakun


رَبَّنَا إِنَّنَا آمَنَّا فَاغْفِرْ لَنَا ذُنُوبَنَا وَقِنَا عَذَابَ النَّا


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