Saturday, March 13, 2010

Niffari: Mawqif al-Bahr ( Pause at the Sea) & Surat Hud 11:41

{ وَقَالَ ٱرْكَبُواْ فِيهَا بِسْمِ ٱللَّهِ مَجْريٰهَا وَمُرْسَاهَا إِنَّ رَبِّي لَغَفُورٌ رَّحِيمٌ }

" And he said : "Embark therein. In the name of Allah is its run and its anchoring. Indeed my Sustainer is incessantly and comprehensively forgiving and merciful". " Surat Hud : 11:41"

The Stop-over or Pause is a step between two stations of the Path according to Ibn 'Arabi.

This Mawqif is considered to be addressed to those in the beginning of Suluk (walk on the Path). It concerns primarily the central issue of maintaining a correct Intention on the Path and what the Salik encounters of the fruits of his attempts. The Sea is understood to be what the Salek must cross and within which he must travel during his walk on the Path.

موقف البحر

أوقفني في البحر فرأيت المراكب تغرق والألواح تسلم، ثم غرقت الألواح، وقال لي لا يسلم من ركب.

وقال لي خاطر من ألقى نفسه ولم يركب.

وقال لي هلك من ركب وما خاطر.

وقال لي في المخاطرة جزء من النجاة، وجاء الموج ورفع ما تحته وساح على الساحل.

وقال لي ظاهر البحر ضوء لا يبلغ، وقعرة ظلمه لا تمكن، وبينهما حيتان لا تستأمن.

وقال لي لا تركب البحر فأحجبك بالآلة، ولا تلق نفسك فيه فأحجبك به.

وقال لي في البحر حدود أيها يقلك.

وقال لي إذا وهبت نفسك للبحر فغرقت فيه كنت كدابة من دوابه.

وقال لي غششتك إن دللتك على سواي.

وقال لي إن هلكت في سواي كنت لما هلكت فيه.

وقال لي الدنيا لمن صرفته عنها وصرفتها عنه، والآخرة لمن أقبلت بها إليه وأقبلت به علي.

Stop-over at the Sea

He stopped me at the Sea:
I saw the vessels sink and the planks remain afloat; eventually, the planks did also sink.
He said to me:
"He who rides (a vessel) is not safe. He who throws himself [in the sea] and does not ride a vessel is taking a risk. He who rides and does not take a risk will reach perdition"
He said to me:
"A part of Salvation lies in the taking of risk. The waves come, lift what lies underneath them and spread it and themselves openly on the shore".
He said to me:
" The surface of the Sea is Luminosity the source of which cannot be reached; the bottom of the Sea is Darkness, indomitable. Between Luminosity and Darkness live the beasts of the sea which cannot be trusted/with whom there is no safety"
He said to me:
" Do not ride (a vessel) in the sea, I would then veil you from Me through its instrument/mean, and do not throw yourself in the sea, I would then veil you from Me through the sea itself."
He said to me:
" If you give yourself to the sea and drown in it then you are nothing but another one of the beasts of the sea."
He said to me:
" I would be cheating you if I were ever to direct you/show you evidence for other than Me."
He said to me:
" If you reach perdition in the pursuit of other than Me, you will be delivered to what you reached perdition for"
He said to me:
" This world ( al-Dunyah) belongs to the one whom I distracted from it; the afterworld (al-Akhira) belongs to the one I approached through it and brought him to Myself"
Further reading: 
1. Sharh Mawaqef al Niffari ( Explanation of the Pauses of Niffari) by al 'Aref billah al-Tilmasani (d. 690 H)
2. Tajrid al-Tawhid Lil Niffari (Divestment in the Tawhid of Niffari) Dr. Jamal Ahmad Marzuqi

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