Accueil English pages Articles written The Contemporary Sufi Heritage of Shaykh Ahmad Ibn Mustafa al-‘Alawī : The Seven Spiritual Stages of the Sufi Path - 4- The spiritual station of Poverty (al-Faqr):
The Contemporary Sufi Heritage of Shaykh Ahmad Ibn Mustafa al-‘Alawī : The Seven Spiritual Stages of the Sufi Path - 4- The spiritual station of Poverty (al-Faqr):
English - Articles written
Écrit par Omneya Nabil Muhammad Ayad   
Jeudi, 22 Mai 2014 00:00
Index de l'article
The Contemporary Sufi Heritage of Shaykh Ahmad Ibn Mustafa al-‘Alawī : The Seven Spiritual Stages of the Sufi Path
Chapter 1 : Introduction
Literature Review
Martin Lings'' Work on Shaykh al-‘Alawī
Thesis purpose
Primary Sources
Historical brief on the French Colonialism in Algeria (1830-1900) and the role of the Sufi orders in Algeria
Brief Biography on Shaykh al-‘Alawī
A comprehensive list of all the written books of Shaykh al-‘Alawī
History of the al-‘Alawī Sufi Order
Chapter Two : The Historical Background of the Sufi Spiritual Stages in Major Works
The History of the Development of the Spiritual Stages in Major Sufi Works
1- The Spiritual Stage of Fear and Vigilant Awareness of God (al-Khashya wa-l- Murāqaba):
2- The Spiritual Station of Satisfaction and Submission (al-Riḍa wa-l- Taslīm)
3- The Spiritual Station of Reliance on God (al-tawakkul)
4- The spiritual station of Poverty (al-Faqr):
5- The spiritual station of Sincerity (al-Ikhlās)
6- The Spiritual Station of Love (Hubb)
7- The Spiritual Station of Oneness (al-Tawhīd)
Chapter 3 : The Sufi Spiritual Stages in the Work of Shaykh al-‘Alawī
1- The Spiritual Stage of Fear and Vigilant Awareness of God (al-Khashya wa-l- Murāqaba)
2-The Spiritual Station of Satisfaction and Submission (al-Rida wa-l- Taslīm)
3-The Spiritual Station of Reliance on God (al-tawakkul)
4-The spiritual station of Poverty (al-Faqr)
5-The spiritual station of Sincerity (Ikhlās)
6-The Spiritual Station of Love (Hubb)
7-The Spiritual Station of Oneness (al Tawhīd)
Conclusion
Bibliography
Notes
Toutes les pages

4- The spiritual station of Poverty (al-Faqr):

Al-faqr equals the need for something and in a literal sense it is the opposite of richness.127 Al-Kāshānī explained the term al-faqr as a turn back to our original state of non-existence until the wayfarer sees his current existence, actions and states as a divine grace. The initial level of faqr is stripping one''s self from worldly attachments. The next level has to do with gratitude for both poverty and richness as providence comes solely from God. The highest state of faqr is when the wayfarer sees himself as utterly belonging to God and thus can do whatever He wants.128

Ibn ‘Arabī in his Futūhāt defined the real poverty as the need of the servant to seek His Lord due to no reason other than Himself. Therefore the faqīr does not need a certain thing from God as he is sufficed with His presence. God has created humans and gave them the things which work for their best interest and therefore there is no need for them to ask for anything or desire for a certain benefit. But some people do not have such deep perceptive sight so they turn to people to ask for benefits and for this reason God stated clearly in the Quran that all people are in utter poverty and God alone is the Rich as He is the one who has the upper hand in heaven and earth.129

Al-Qushairī in his Risāla quoted a Sufi who said that there are four elements that should accompany the faqīr in his poverty, the first of which is knowledge to straighten his path, and piety to keep him away from wrongdoings, certainty to push his way forward and finally invocation of God to keep him from being lonely.130

The same meaning was reiterated by a Gnostic when he was asked about the nature of the real faqīr so he said that for the faqīr giving is more beloved to him than taking and generosity is not about the rich giving to the poor but real generosity is for the poor to give out to the rich.131

Al-Ghazālī in his Iḥyā narrated a story which reveals the unique character of the true faqīr, he said that Shaqīq al-Balkhī met Ibrahim Ibn Adham who came from Khurāsān, so al-Balkhī asked him about the status of the fuqarā (the poor people) in Khurāsān, so Ibn Adham replied saying: "If they are given, they thank and if they were deprived, they would be patient", so al-Balkhī said in reply: "this is the status of the dogs in Balkh, the status of the real fuqarā is that if they were deprived, they would thank and if they were given, they would favor others over themselves".132

Shaykh al-Harawī discussed the different degrees of poverty and defined the third degree as being the degree of the wayfarers. In this degree the wayfarer encounters a state of iḍṭirār or urgency in which the servant finds himself compelled to turn only to God and enter his divine realm. In this realm, the wayfarer fails to witness anyone else save God.133

The same meaning was echoed by Ibn ''Attāillah when he said in one of his aphorisms: "It is a marvel how Being (al-wujūd) has been manifested in nonbeing (al-''adam) and how the contingent (al-ḥādith) has been established alongside of Him who possesses the attribute of eternity (waṣf al-qidam).134

Shaykh Ibn ‘Ajība commented on this aphorism by explaining that Being (al-wujūd) and non being (al-''adam) are two opposites which can''t coexist. The only Real Being that must exist is God and all else are non existents and amount to mere nothingness. Therefore when the Real Being appears his opposite disappears so He cannot be concealed with non existents as none exists in reality save Him.135



 
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