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Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Sheikh Yahya Rhodus

Kitab An-Nafs

Part two of two

Second session

We’ll have twenty five minutes of spiritual food before we have physical food

One scholar whose family would give him food after Dhikr, he said, “I’ve already had dinner.”

He Quran states, “Surely, you are of tremendous character.”

The heaviest thing to be placed in the scales is piety and good character

The woman who prayed all night and fasted during the day had no good in her because she harmed her neighbours

This is dangerous

Satan worshipped Allah Subhanu wa ta’ala but could not bow to Adam (Upon him peace)


There are several aspects of good character and its fruits

We need to understand the outward appearance – it could be ugly

Allah Subhanu wa ta’ala look at you hearts

It does not matter what the outward looks like

Superstars have facelifts

They place a focus on the outward

Inward beauty last and goes on into the next world

A trait of the character is when one reaches a state that they naturally do things

Character is a condition of the inner soul

People know that they should pray but don’t

The Prophets (upon them peace) have firm resolution

He had the ability to overlook the human being

The extremist Fatwa says to kill any American, this is something that need to be dispelled

The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) never did this

One man came to the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) and wanted to make fornication legal and after the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) talked to him it became the most disliked to him. He (peace and blessings be upon him) drew out his true nature

Some people are saying we are going to eliminate religion and have reason

We will not be able to have concessions

Its already there in the Deen

If someone cuts us off on the road, what would your reaction be? Drive up beside him and swear at him

You can see this in hajj - someone steals your shoes

It all comes out in the test

Allah Subhanu wa ta’ala is just and tries people different tribulations

Some people are born with good aspects, others have to work it on it

Most people have been born good or bad

On the day, no wealth or children will be of benefit except the one who comes with a sound heart

In the time of the caliph Mumin, Greek works were translated

In the house called “Bait al hikma” (in Baghdad)

There are positions that took people out of Islam

Imam Ghazali (may Allah show him mercy) used what was beneficial and left behind wasn’t

Revelation is there to check the intellect

One of thins that effect the way a person thinks is desire

They say, “A drop of desire can destroy an ocean of knowledge.”

He (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Wisdom is the lost property of the believer.”

“Seek knowledge even in china.”

This sets down the guidelines

Imam Ghazali (may Allah show him mercy) took the breakdown of the human being from Plato

If all the facial aspects are equal then a person is beautiful

Likewise the inner aspect

Rational (thinking) + Irascible (anger) + appetite (desire)

These three things need to be in order – some know wrong but do it

Some don’t know

Others know and leave it

These need to be balanced

When the rational or apparent

Courage can be reckless by putting himself and others in danger

You need to know the proper time to do something

Third session

We are not supposed to uproot the desires but what we do is re-channel them

The ego calls to evil – there is an earthly element that’s low and a soul which is high

The lower soul is called luwma

If you want to climb a mountain you have to struggle

The Quran has 6600 verses and only 500 deal with rulings

Your desire hasn’t move its changed

We don’t have to re-channel our desire, we have to re-channel them

We see beautiful examples in his life (peace and blessings be upon him)

Sloth is a spiritual laziness

Imam Ghazali (may Allah show him mercy) mastered the arguments to such a point he brought out points that they did not know

A short man cannot render himself tall – in principle

Goodness in character is part of ones character

The reality of good character is suppressing desire

There was hadith about improving characteristics was mentioned by him – you can tame some animals

Falcons, dogs

Desire and anger are like seeds, if you allow it to overcome you, it becomes ugly

Desire is created in children before anger – anger comes later

If you do something over and over again it becomes easier

It was said that satan has left channels open – for people when they do bad things in Ramadan

A simple man who responds well to treatment will be reformed in a short time

There is a man who recognised evil acts but he knows he isn’t acting as he should

He has a far harder task, at first

People live how they die

Reforming a man is work and reforming a wolf is torture

The vast majority of the companions were youth

The middle point is from excess and deficient

In a lot of questions that are asked, theres always a middle way

The Muslim world has yet to overcome the colonial period

One of things that the occupying forces undermined was the traditional sources

From 800 – 1600 the Muslims were the dominant force

People respond in different ways

The Quran can be implemented in every time and place

You cannot negate the sacred law

We need to reapply the sacred law

We need to call people to the middle way, the way of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him)

One of the agreements of the treaty of huddabiya was to send anyone who came from Mecca back.

Its easy to lash out and not let your anger or desire overcome you

Allah Subhanu wa ta’ala will not allow the Muslims to put over by the non-Muslims – only up to what the Muslims allow

The self is not pure

It takes struggle to contain yourself.

Fourth session

There are times when you should be angry

His (peace and blessings be upon him) would blush with anger but he wouldn’t speak

A person who finds themselves angry, make wudu, if standing, sit down

Look what people say when they are angry, this turns into a feud

He (peace and blessings be upon him) anger was only for the sake of Allah Subhanu wa ta’ala

If we had to uproot anger then how could we respond?

A man may be controlled by his desire

Its not good to be extravagant or stingy

Theres is no need for extravagance

Ali ibn Abu Talib (may Allah show him mercy) said, “No rich man enjoys his wealth that a poor man suffers.”

He (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) was given a choice between being a Prophet king or poor – he chose to be poor because he wanted to close to Allah Subhanu wa ta’ala


Eat and drink and don’t be extravagant. Allah doesn’t like the extravagant

In the battle of Badr, the Muslims took seventy prisoners and the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) told his companions to treat them well
The companions gave them bread because bread was more filling and retained the dates, all they had was dates and bread

The middle way is like lukewarm water that is neither warm nor cold

The teacher must make all anger disliked

Anger needs to be balanced

You have to balance things out, you have to give until it becomes easy

The point of class today is to reflect on the classical works

Sacred knowledge is sweet and you don’t want to do anything else

Expose yourself to the breezes in the gatherings of sacred knowledge

That desire to get closer to Allah Subhanu wa ta’ala


Attend regular gathering of knowledge

How do you deal with a person who brings out your bad character?
Depends on the situation, you cannot do anything haram, maintain ties, brief visits

Its difficult for people here in these countries who fall into sins, show them mercy

Have a relationship with them and give them an alternative

Don’t do that act no matter how many times it comes to your heart

You have to rely on Allah Subhanu wa ta’ala

Love of Allah Subhanu wa ta’ala and his Messenger (peace and blessings be upon him) burns up other things. This is the light of love

If your rights have been taken then you can demand your rights, but they might ask you for their rights

The higher thing is to forgive. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) forgave people rather than ask for his rights

Find someone to read the book with, if you can but you can read it on your own, read it and ask someone

Umar Ibn Khattab (may Allah show him mercy) used to eat nine morsels of food a day, when you want to take two more bites – stop and that’s hard to do.