Sheikh Najumuddeen Al-Kubra

Ten principles (of Spiritual wayfaring)
Translated by Arfan Shah (Sheikhy notes)

The scholar, the lofty Imam, the abstainer, the worshipper, the distinguished, the pious, the virtuous, the perfect sultan of the path and the reality of the master of the martyrs, Najumuddeen Al-Kubra (may Allah sanctify his secret) said, “The paths to Allah are as many the breaths of creation. Our way which we shall explain is the closest, the clearest, and the most guided path to Allah (the Exalted). That is because the paths are many and they can be limited to three categories.

One: the path of the masters of action by constant fasting, praying, alms, pilgrimage, striving for the sake of Allah, Quranic recitation and other of the outward actions. This is the path of the elite. Those who arrive (reach Allah) by this path only do so after a long time and they are the least of the few.

Second: the path of the people of exertion and spiritual exercise to change their character, purify their souls, clean their hearts, adorn their hearts and seek that which concerns the inward edifices. This is the path of the pious. Those who arrive by this path are more than those who arrive in the previous but those who arrive (in this way) are infrequent. As Ibn Mansur (Al-Hallaj) asked Ibrahim Al-Khowas, “With what things do you train your soul?” he replied, “I have been training my soul in the station of divine providence (tawakkul) for thirty years!” He said, “You have exhausted your life in building the inward; so where are you in annihilation (fana) with Allah?”

Third: the path of the seekers of Allah and those purified by Allah. This is the path of shrewdness of the people of love and the seekers of attraction. Those who arrive at this path, in the beginning, are more that others in the endings. This chosen path is based upon death by desire, as the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon him) said, “Die before you die.”1

It is encompassed by ten principles: Repentance/tawba

The first is repentance (tawba). This is returning to Allah (the Exalted) with desire; as the deceased return without desire, as the Exalted said, “Return your Lord...”2 This is to abandon all types of sins. A sin is that which veils one from Allah (the Exalted); from the degrees of the world and the afterlife. So it is necessary that all seekers abandon every purpose except Allah (the Exalted). As it was stated, “Your existence is sin so do not compare that to the sin itself!”


The second is abstaining (zuhd) from the world. This is to leave its enjoyments and desires, the least and the most of it, the wealth, positions; as the deceased would leave it. The reality of abstinence is to abstain from the world and the afterlife. As the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings be upon him) said, “The world is unlawful for the people of afterlife and the afterlife is unlawful for the

people of the world. They are both unlawful for the people of Allah (the Exalted).”3


Ibn Hajar states this narration is not Thabit/proven. It is often used in the spiritual circles and means one has to die to ones desires before he actually dies; according to Al-Qari in Kashaf Al-Ikhfa 2/384. Sheikh Atabek Shukurov said it was the statement of Hassan Al-Basri (may Allah be pleased with him). The true meaning of the hadith has been taken from another hadith the Prophet (may Allah bestow peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Consider yourselves inhabitants of the graves.” Al-Bukhari and At-Tirmidhi. 2 Quran: Al-Fajr 89:28. 3 Al-Daylami in Al-Firdaws. Rated Hassan by Imam As-Suyuti in Jamia Al-Saghir. Possibly a statement of the ta’been.

Divine providence/tawakkul

The third is divine providence (tawakkul). This is to leave all causes for the causation of everything; understanding it’s by Allah (the Exalted); as the deceased do. Allah (the Exalted) said, “Whoever relies upon Allah; it is sufficient for him.”4


The fourth is contentment (qana’a). This is abandonment of the bodily, bestial pleasures like the deceased do. Except that which you are compelled to need of the human nature; so not be excessive in food, clothes and housing; limit that which is unnecessary as you are able.


The fifth is isolation (‘uzalah). This refraining from mixing with creation by keeping lowly and severing oneself; as the deceased do. Except for serving ones spiritual master and assisting him; and this is like washing the deceased (the student by the spiritual master). So it necessary to be before him like the deceased is before the washer, so he came move him as he wills; to wash him with the water of Wilyah from major foreign impurities and the tarnish of filth. The principle of isolation means to isolate the senses from the movement of the perceptions because every destruction, misfortune, tribulation troubles the soul. It strengthens the soul and pedagogy of cleansing oneself from entering into the window of the senses. Whoever follows the wind of his soul to the lowest of the low by its shackles will be overpowered by them. So isolation is isolating the senses. Severing breathes of the soul from the world. Satan (is who is the) subversion of the passion and desire. As a doctor, when he administers the treatment, uses prevention initially to what is harming and increasing the duration of the illness; so he stops this, using the support of corrupt

Quran: Al-Talaq 65: 3.

materials that assist the search of the illness. It was said, “Fever is the cause of all medicine.” Then the cure is administered in laxative that removes the corrupt materials. It is strengthened by the natural strength of heat instinct which removes the illness by repelling its nature and renews health. So the purgative here is after prevention and purified by constant divine invocation.

Divine innovation/dhikr

The sixth is continuous divine invocation (dhikr). Is to refrain from the mention of anything, in forgetfulness, except Allah (the Exalted). The Exalted said, “Remember your Lord if you forget...”5 As for the link to affiliating remembrance then it is by the statement, There is no deity except Allah, because this is the core; built upon negation and affirmation. The negation removes the corrupt purgative which breeds illnesses of the heart, constraints of the soul, strength of ego and the removing of these qualities. These are the blameworthy characteristics of the self and the attributes of passion. Concerning the affirmation, “Except Allah.” It is light that arrives to the heart and safety from the characteristics of depravity, by inclining to its origin. His nature is balanced by its light and renewal by the light of Allah (The Exalted). So the sprit is illumined by the testification of the truth and it illumines his essence and his attributes. The earth of the soul is split open by the light of Lord and removed from him are darkness and its qualities. “A day when the earth is changed into another earth and heavens; they come forth to Allah, the One, the Supreme.”6

So the proposition is,

“Remember me so I mention you.” So the invoker is changed by the invocation, as the innovation changes the invoker. So the invoker is annihilated by the divine remembrance. The innovation becomes the leader of invoker. When the invoker seeks he finds the innovation and the invocation seeks the invoker. “If he sees me, I see him and if I see him, he sees us.”

5 6

Quran: Al-Kahf 18:22. Quran: Ibrahim 14:48. 7 Quran: Al-Baqarah 2:152.

Directing oneself to Allah/Tawju ila Allah

The seventh is directing oneself to Allah (Tawju ila Allah). It is abandon all calls except the call of the Real (Allah), as he does when deceased. So nothing remains with him of what is sought, no beloved, no purpose and no intention except Allah. Even if the stations of all the Prophets and Messengers (may Allah bestow peace and blessings upon them) were shown to him, he would not turn from Allah (the Exalted) for a moment. Al-Junaid (may Allah show him mercy) said, “If someone was truthful to Allah for a million years then turned for a moment. What he lost in that moment would be greater than what he had previously attained.”


The eighth is patience (Sabr). It is to abandon the pleasures of the ego/nafs by striving and endurance, as he would with death. It is built upon weaning it from habits and gratifications thus purifying it and extinguishing its pleasures. Steadfastness upon the path is the means to cleansing the heart and beautifying the soul. The Exalted said, “We made leaders of them who guide to our path as long as they endure and our signs they affirm.”8

Observing oneself/Muraqabah

The ninth is observing oneself (Muraqabah). Abandoning the notion that he has ability or power, like the deceased do, thus observing the gifts of the Real (Allah). Exposing oneself to subtle breezes and turning away from other than Him, immersing oneself in the ocean of his desire, longing to meet Him, towards his heart, towards his soul and yearning to Him, seeking His assistance, seeking His help. Until Allah (the Exalted) opens the door of mercy to you and do not cling to it. Thus closed to them is the door of punishment and will not be open. He is coloured by the luminous light of the

Quran: Sajda 32:24.

mercy of Allah (the Exalted). The soul removes the darkness of the commanding self in a moment is not removed by thirty years of struggle and spiritual practices; those are the elite. Moreover they have the evil of their souls changed, by the speech of the Exalted, “Allah changed their evil actions into good actions,”9 these are the pious. Moreover the good actions of the pious are the evil actions of those close to Allah (the Exalted) because of the grace they received. By the speech of the Exalted, “Those who do good is excellence and more.”10 So this increase is a grace from the Real, “This is the bounty of Allah who He gives to his servants whoever He wills.”11


The tenth is contentment (Rida). This is the abandonment of the pleasure of the ego by internalising the pleasure of Allah (the Exalted) by accepting pre-eternal rulings and submitting to his arrangement completely without shunning or objection like the deceased. As one of them said, ‘I assigned my entire affair to my Beloved, if he wishes he can bring me to life or if he wishes he can eliminate me.’ So whoever dies, by his decision, from these descriptions of darkness Allah brings to live by the light of His providence. As Allah the Exalted said, “Those who were dead then we brought back to life and made a light for them which they walk amongst the people, unlike those like him in the darkness unable to escape.”12 Meaning he who was dead by the descriptions of darkness in light of the tree of humanity; we transformed him by praiseworthy attributes and made for him one of the lights of beauty that he walks with, meaning that is light. Like the speech of the Exalted, “They walk amongst the people,” meaning they amongst all the people with their insight they witness their states. “Like those like him in darkness,” meaning like those remain in the darkness of the tree of humanity, “unable to escape,” without the flowering of belief and without Prophetic fruits.”

This is completes the text known as the ten principles or the closest path to Allah or the treatise of

wayfaring. All of it is by the help, support and expression of the Sheikh. We have narrated the text
of the treatise in its entirety to benefit in desire that it precedes the increase in the actions of the


Quran: Al-Furqan 25:70. Quran: Yunis 10:26. 11 Quran: Al-Madiah 5:54. 12 Quran: Al-An’am 6:122.

Sheikh of his time (the author). This text was taken from Fawiah Al-Jamal wa fawatih Al-Jalal by Sheikh Najumuddeen Al-Kubra (pages 90 to 95).

All praise belongs to Allah, the almighty and Exalted, for his assistance and support in the completion of this text as nothing can be completed without his support. And may endless salutations, benedictions and blessings be upon the final Messenger and all the Prophets.

This translation was completed on the 16th Rajab 1433/8th June 2012 by his worthless and broken servant Arfan Shah Al-Bukhari (Sheikhy notes).

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