Many people take keen interest in the Islamic spirituality while engaging in a number of ‘overly’ deep and philosophical discussions and tending to ignore the simple basics. In this scenario, the incident mentioned hereunder sets a good reminder for all of us!
Sayyidi Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani mentioned that his elder brother, Zaki Kaifi (1), during his childhood, sent a handwritten letter (2) to Hazrat Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi. In response, Hazrat Thanwi appreciated him and added “.. Try to make your handwriting further clear. This will provide ease and comfort to the reader and, by making such an intention (for the comfort of others), you will gain reward (from Allah) as well. See I am making you a Sufi during your childhood.. ”
Hazrat Thanwi would greatly emphasize on following the Islamic etiquettes and financial dealings alongside other injunctions and guidelines of Islam. He would consider adopting the ways of Islam in every walk of life as a basic part of Tasawwuf (Islamic spirituality). For this reason, while instructing the young “Zaki” to make his writing clearer, he remarked “I am making you a Sufi..” (i.e. by acting according to these rules of Islamic etiquettes, you are becoming a true adherent of Islamic Sufism).
– Adapted from what Shaikh Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani narrated in his lectures and also in his obituary for his brother, Zaki Kaifi (now published in ‘Nuqoosh e Raftugan‘).
Hence writing properly is not only a means to communicate well, it is also an effort to avoid unnecessary inconvenience being caused to the readers. Caring about the convenience of others is a fundamental teaching in the Islamic spirituality! Talhah
(1) Maulana Zaki Kaifi was the eldest son of Mufti Muhammad Shafi. He had a passion for reading and learning which would manifest in his intellectual conversations, apart from his rich poetic taste. He settled in Lahore after the creation of Pakistan and established a bookstore by the name of Idara e Islamiyat. His progeny is also serving Islam – his son, Mufti Mahmood Ashraf Usmani, is currently a senior teacher at Darul ‘Uloom Karachi
(2) A type of letter that is generally known as Islahi Khat in Urdu – a letter wherein a seeker informs his mentor/Shaikh about his spiritual conditions and asks any relevant questions if required
In our community, argumentation and bickering are a common phenomenon. Usually, each side continues deeming (only) themselves to be on the right. On such occasions, leaving argument for the sake of Allah has been greatly appreciated in the Shari’ah..
Sayyidi, Hazrat Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani (مد ظله) mentioned that his father, Hazrat Mufti Muhammad Shafi Usmani (رحمه الله), would always strive to avoid disputes and argumentations. He would frequently keep the Hadith in mind, and read it out for others, wherein the Prophet صلي الله عليه وسلم said:
“I guarantee a house in the center of Jannah for the person who leaves arguing, even if he is right” (Recorded in Sunan Abu Dawūd)
An excerpt from the book, “Easy Good Deeds”, by Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani
One of the most exemplary incident in this regard was when he was granted a sizable land in the midst of Karachi city for the construction of an Islamic seminary (Darul ‘Uloom). However, after the official approval by the government authorities and initial arrangements (which included a ceremony for the laying down of the foundation, construction of a few rooms and a telephone connection), some dispute arose over it. Despite being on the right and the project having started and progressing already, Mufti Muhammad Shafi withdrew himself and cancelled the project. Numerous people were struck with a huge shock and they insisted for continuation of the project. However, the honored Mufti remained undeterred and he clarified that avoiding disputes is more important than the construction of a seminary.
Later, Mufti Shafi was donated a large piece of land, by some traders, where the Darul ‘Uloom now stands (in a way which could have been much beyond the expectations at that time. Talhah)
– Adapted from a discourse at Jumu’ah by Shaikh Mufti Taqi Usmani.
While striving to increase our worshipping during the last 10 nights of Ramadhān, we must also remind ourselves of this important lesson!
Narrated by Ubada bin As-Samit رضي الله عنه :
The Prophet صلي الله عليه وسلم came out to inform us about the night of qadr but two Muslims were quarreling with each other. So, the Prophet صلي الله عليه وسلم said, “I came out to inform you about the night of qadr but such-and-such persons were quarreling, so the news about it had been taken away; yet that might be for your own good, so search for it..”
Sahih Bukhari Chapter No: 32, Night Prayer in Ramadaan (Taraweeh)
Shaikh Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani Saheb mentioned, after referring to this narration, that our beloved Nabi صلي الله عليه وسلم didn’t forget the knowledge about Laylah al Qadr without Allah Ta’ālā’s will. Rather, Allah Ta’ālā had intended for us to strive more (throughout the odd nights during the last 10 days of Ramadhan) to receive the immense rewards of this blessed night. However, through this incident, Allah Ta’ālā further revealed the wrongfulness of the act of altercation and dispute (1).
– Adapted from a discourse at Jumu’ah by Shaikh Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani.