Thursday, March 26, 2009

Recent Maulid with Shaykh Muh'd al Ya'qubi in Damascus.

Towards the ending of the maulid in Jaami'a al Taubah At the peak of the Maulid. Shaykhuna al Ya'qubi, Shaykh Husaam ud Deen

Wa salaatu wa salaam ‘ala khairi a’alaam wa aalihi wa saHbihi wa sallam.

SubhanALLAH, it only happens once in every year just like Ramadhan, few take the opportunity to benefit from it, some let it go pass them then they realise what they have missed. Indeed, it is almost leaving us again and none knows if he/she will see it again.

The month of Rabi’ul awwal is the month the Prophet(SAW) was born and also the month his ruh was taken for the next abode. This month, marks a great significance in our lives. A Shaykh asked: if the Prophet(SAW) wasn’t born, what would the world be like? How? The answer is indeed very clear as there is no need to start explaining.

AlhamduliLLAH in Damascus, the month of Rabi’ul awwal is felt by all. In the market places, mosques, schools, etc. The twelfth day which marks the birth of the best of creations is well celebrated. You see the lights shining everywhere, the mosques are full vibrating to the sound of anasheed, sweets shared around and lectures about his birth and significance in our lives are given.

I was again privileged to spend some of these beautiful moments with the venerable scholar, Allaamah As Sayyid Muhammad al Ya’qubi. While I was reading some pages on grammar from my Alfiyyah ibn Maalik leaning on my pillow as learnt from the Shama’il Muhammadiyyah taught by Shaykhuna, a called reached me informing me that Shaykhuna will be attending a Maulid in Jaami’a al Ihsaan alongside other Shuyukh where he will also give a talk. The mosque is a place I had never been to but know that Shaykh Maahir Hindi is a Khatib over there. Shaykh Maahir is a good friend of Shaykhuna.

Without any delay, I accepted to go there with my ever wonderful friend Waathiq before maghrib. We took off and arrived the venue after maghrib. We missed our way and were forced to keep asking and searching till we arrived. We stayed till after ‘eshaa when the masjid became full. Shuyukh and people coming in with anaasheed making the masjid to vibrate from all corners.

Shortly was the arrival of Shaykuna who hurriedly prayed his two rak’ah salaam to the masjid close to the entrance of the mosque and took to his seat. He was immediately called forward to give a short talk. As usual, he did what he knows how to do best. His question, is the Prophet(SAW) the same like every other human just like contemporary Shuyukh say now?
After his talk, was the speech of Shaykh Husaam al Deen Farfur who also spilled the air with wonderful words of hikmah from his beautiful life (SAW). We stayed for almost two hours when it started raining. SubhanALLAH, I never knew that was the beginning of the day.

Shaykh left together with Shaykh Husaam al Deen in a different car leaving his car to us. Masha ALLAH, we got ourselves in and headed straight to Jaami’a a Taubah. Jaami’a al Taubah is a mosque where great Ulamaa taught and passed away; Ulamaa of the heart, jurisprudence, Hadith, sunnah, etc. You can smell the fragrance of great awliya that taught there before their demise in the masjid. Shuyukh were already on their seats. When I look straight finding myself a place to sit, I saw the bright illuminating face of Shaykhuna sitting and counting his Sibhah. How did he first us to the masjid, I wonder. The story of ahl ul Khutwah came to my mind. These were people who took few steps from a far distance to another distance. Believe it or not, our mutawaatir reports prove it.

While anasheed and Shuyukh where speaking, the masjid was still occupied by the fragrance of our late awliya. Great men of ALLAH were sitting at the front of the masjid. Shaykh Husaam al Deen gave a short talk after apologising for his late coming, he indeed starting to cry slowly. Oh my sinful soul, I couldn’t reflect deep on his beautiful words and admonition only then did I realise how strong my heart is like a rock.

Masha ALLAH, Shaykh Husaam al Deen for those who know him properly is a great Munshid. He knows very much how and when a particular kind of nasheed should be sung. Indeed he started giving us some beautiful mix from his collection. Very beautiful it was while Shaykhuna was rubbing him on his back. All went well through the night and the khatm dua was said by Shaykhuna. You could see how his hands were shaking. After the duas, people leaving to take barakah from the Shuyukh. I waited while Shaykhuna left the masjid then my friend and I followed. It was still raining showing that the day was indeed a blessed one.

We left straight for the Shaykh’s car waiting for others to come join us. Surprisingly I saw the Shaykh alighting from another car to join us. He took over the steering and so we zoomed off in the dark old market surrounding of old Damascus where Jaami’a al Taubah is located. The car felt the presence of the Shaykh when he started a different lesson on what tasawwuf is all about and wahdat al Wujuud. Describing in his word he said, it is taste, feeling and action. I remember asking a Shaykh to explain to me what it means, he said that it is a stage one reaches that cannot be described. It is like asking a blind man to explain to you how colour yellow is.

Shaykhuna after the short car lesson, asked me where will I be alighting. Masha ALLAH, how many of us have gotten such an opportunity to be driven by people of high maqaam and blessings. Indeed, this is not the only time that I have been blessed with the opportunity to be with Shaykhuna in his car, home or during a travel outside of Damascus. Our prayer always is that, ALLAH joins us with those HE Loves in the life and the next.
Verily, a day well spent should be a day written and recorded in our hearts. I can’t think of any other than share this beautiful experience of mind that cannot be expressed by writing. Celebrating the birth of ALLAH’s messenger is a blessing that we should always hope to acquire.

We pray for many more of such beautiful and eventful moments like the one I shared with you.
Walking back home after leaving my friend Waathiq, I realised that the maulid took us till past 1:00am. As I went to kiss Shaykhuna’s hand, Shaykhuna saying good night to us in a tone I imitate in my room: Ok sidi Abu Bakr, I hope you’re ok, everything fine, your studies ok.

This is just the end of the beginning as two maulids are still ahead: one in Shaykhuna’s masjid where he delivers Fridaykhutbah and the second in Shaykh al Akbar ibn Arabi’s masjid.
Was salaamULLAHi ‘ala khairi khalqi wa ‘alaykum bis salaam.

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