Friday, July 13, 2012


 “Islam” means “surrender”. It has three pillars of surrender. The first is belief. Surrender to your beliefs, for example, the belief that there is only one God. The second pillar is practice, or ritual. Surrender to your rituals, whether they be daily prayer or fasting. The third pillar is experience. Surrender to your experience.

The Sufi movement evolved out of Islam and led people on this inner journey, this place of inner surrender.
By SURRENDER I mean experiencing God in one's inner self, cognizing the ultimate knowledge, submitting to Him, and loving him with one's mind and heart. This is the reality of religion as I know it.

Over 1400 years ago the Prophet of Islam declared: “Whoever cognizes the true self has cognized God.” In Islam, the true self, or the “I,” is equated with the Divine. This is why Islam proclaims the Oneness of Existence --- la ilaha-illa’llah --- or, “there is no other but God.” This is the true human dignity granted to humans - that there is no separation between him and God. As stated in the Holy Qur’an (50:16), “I am closer to you than your jugular vein.”
Prophet Mohammad (peace be upon him) gave directives as to how one can cognize one’s true self. To attain this state, one must submit to God. 
It is through submission to the knowledge that one’s actions will be founded upon knowledge and wisdom and not on ignorance, superstition, or blind faith. Unfortunately, many believe that to submit means you are subservient to someone. This is false as it is blind faith and therefore not worthy of the dignity of the human being as ordained by God.

This is the state of total freedom and love that has been amplified in the writings of the Sufi masters. The words of Imam Ali, the guiding light for humanity, attest to this genuine and sacred goal:

Islam is submission, and submission is stability and constancy in the true reality of Existence.

Submission is the vitality of Islam because of the dynamic evolution and revolution that takes place from the core of the believer’s heart, where all boundaries of separation and duality cease to exit.

In this truthfulness, the believer attests to the oneness of God. Attestation is not only verbal, but the believer’s body, mind, and heart –his entire being—must resonate with the presence of one God.

This method of purification through submission to God and annihilation in God was termed ma'rifa, meaning acquaintance and cognition. To be exact, the actual word for Sufism is irfan, derived from the word ma'rifa. Ma'rifa (cognition) refers to the state whereby nothing remains unknown to us about the subject of inquiry. In this context it refers to the cognition of oneself and the cognition of God. The one who teaches this method of cognition is known as the arif, or he who has attained the most exalted state of existence through annihilation and permanence in God.

Rumi was one of the great Sufis. He lived thirteen centuries into the Common Era, and spent the last 12 years of his life writing just one poem, the Masnavi, which is 64,000 lines long. 
One line says, “You are God hiding from yourself.” This is a profound truth, one I cannot explain to you, one that you can only dive into and explore for truth.It relates to surrendering to the God within 

1 comment:

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