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The khatmiya of sayyuduna shiekh ahmad tijani(Ra)

The Khatmiya and Katmiya of Sidna Shaykh Tijani The concept of Sealness of Mohammedian Sainthood (khatm al-wilaya alMohammediya) characterizes the unique standing of Shaykh Mawlana Abul Abbas Ahmed Tijani in Islamic sainthood. Sidna Shaykh announced himself the seal of the Sufi masters (Khatm al-Awliya) in the historical cycle inaugurated by the Holy Prophet (peace and blessing be upon him). He declared that the spiritual overflowings (al-fuyud) which came from the Mohammedian Essence (al-Hadra alMohammediya, peace and blessing be upon him) were distributed through him over the whole span of the history of the world. Speaking of the undisclosed various stages of sealhood (al-khatmiya) in his Jawharul Manzum, the prolific Tijani penman Sidi Ahmed Skirej (d. 1366/1940) dismantles, Appointed sainthood (al-wilaya al-maaduna) which is a special inheritance (wiratha) from the Prophet (peace and blessing be upon him) is divided to general (aam) and private (khass) as mentioned by the Sufis. The source of both emanates either from the inner prophethood (batin al-risala), inner messengerhood (batin al-nubuwwa), or from the Mohammedian Essence (ad-dhat al-Mohammediya). Each of these can be attained by the saints. The only difference, however, is in the degree of appearance and manifestation at the rank (maqam). In Sufi literature the term khatm stands for the maqam of the Seal of the Greatest Viceroy (khatm al-khilafa al-udhma) appeared first through Adam. Almighty Allah said: And when the Lord said to the angels: Lo! I am about to place a viceroy (khalifa) in the earth [2:30]. The seal of this maqam is one person who is on the footsteps of Adam as well as Sidna Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) for viceroyalty perfectly and absolutely manifested itself restrictively in him. Therefore no saint will ever reach the perfection (of Sidna Ali) when arriving to this type of khatmiya. The khatm, therefore, does not seal sainthood. In fact, others will attain the khatmiya after him except that no one will reach his degree. (In the framework of this typology) the khatmiya is termed al-mulk (reign) as well. At times the term khatm characterizes the Seal of Imams (khatm al-imama). This category typifies the full and perfect manifestation in the imama (leadership) of

people. This is restricted to the sons of Sidna Ali ibn Abi Talib. Therefore no one else will be bestowed the perfect manifestation of this saintly category except them. At times the term khatm characterises the maqam of the Absolute General Authorization (al-qutbaniya al-jamia al-udhma), that is graded one rank bellow that of the prophets (anbiya) and companions (sahaba) of the Holy Prophet (peace an blessing be upon him). Only those very unique Mohammedian-Poles reach this khatmiya maqam. One person only occupies it at every age, resembling, on the other hand, the Reviver of Faith (al-mujaddid) that appears at every 100 years. The mujaddid is not restricted to one person and one person only. Numerous poles claimed this khatmiya rank such as Sidi Mohammed Wafa (d. 765/1350), Imam Qashashi, and others (may Allah be pleased with all). Compliance with the Sharia by heart and recollection (without having to resort to an aid) is a prerequisite of this khatmiya. Knowledge of the names of each animal, plant, mineral metal and other beings is another prerequisite. Sidi Ali ibn Mohammed Wafa (807/1404) said: The most perfect saint in every age is the one who manifests his divine revelation and gnosis in a way people could never have guessed. Therefore each khatm (in this typology) possesses special manifestation in accordance to his rank. Hence levels of variance exist (in every age). The particularity of this khatmiya (in the historical cycle inaugurated by the prophethood of the Holy Prophet) was fastened and sealed by the Greatest Seal (alkhatm al-akbar), the Famous Gnostic (al-arif shahir), the Sun of Gnosis (shams almaarif), Mawlana Ahmed Tijani (radiyaAllah-u anhu wa saqana minhu bi-aadhami al-awani). Shaykh Tijanis great sealness of the khatmiya maqam indicates that no one will ever appear in this maqam the way he appeared and manifested in it as he sealed the absolute appearance (ad-duhur at-tam) of the khatmiya maqam. This does not indicate that he sealed its appearance nor no one after him will attain the rank of sainthood (wilaya) as it is commonly misunderstood. The khatmiya maqams absolute appearance was claimed before by Sidi Muhyiddin ibn Arabi al-Hatimi (d. 636/1221) when he said: We no doubt sealed sainthood by inheriting the Hachimi and the Messiah. However he retracted (tarajaa) later when aware that the full, complete and absolute appearance in that maqam is to be for some one else. He discover not who will attain such absolute appearance. That is why, like other saints, called such a khatm: the Concealed (al-Maktum).

At times the term khatm figures the Seal of Prophetic Inheritance (khatm al-wiratha al-nabawiya). After this khatm appear no saints with power of governance (Awliya-u tasreef). This seal will be the just Imam, the Awaited al-Mahdi (al-Mahdi alMuntadhar). Sainthood (out of the power of tasreef) wont cease to exist after him, for it is the Absolute Seal, the one after which there will be no saints at all is the Prophet Sidna Aissa (Jesus; peace and blessings be upon our prophet and him). At times the term khatm bodies the Seal of the Existence of Birth (Khatm wujud alwilada). Meaning that this khatm will be the last to be born from mankind. It is restricted to one person who is on the footsteps of Prophet Seth (peace be upon him) and holder of his secrets. After this seal there wont be any more children from the children of Adam for he is the Seal of Children. A sister of his will also be born at the same time. She will be born before him and he will follow. His head will be at her feet. His birthplace will be China and he will speak the language of his country. Sterility will be widespread in man and women and there will be no more children. He will call people to Allah but will not be heard. When Almighty Allah takes his soul and the souls of the believers in his time, those remaining will be at the level of animals where they dont establish the Halal (the authoritative) nor refrain from Haram (the forbidden). Their conduct will be based on mindless and faithless vain-desires, this is when the last hour before Judgment will occur. Granted, the Concealed Pole (al-Qutb al-Maktum) gathers the Seal of Special Mohammedian Sainthood (khatm al-wilaya al-Mohammediya al-khassa): the last and most perfect saint in the historical process of sainthood. With this person evolution of special sainthood has found its end, just as perfect prophethood had their seal; the Prophet Sidna Mohammed (peace and blessing be upon him). As previously revealed by Sidi Hakim Tirmidhi in his work, Kitab Khatm al-Awliya, Shaykh al-Akbar Muhyiddin ibn Arabi al-Andalusi was the first Sufi to beautifully unwind the glory and prestige of Khatm al-Awliya. In the treatise of Anqa al-Maghreb fi-khatm al-awliya wa shams al-Maghreb (The Moroccan phoenix in the sealhood of sanctity and sun of the Maghreb), he went too far when he revealed the very-concealed originality of the khatm, As the Holy Prophet (peace and blessing be upon him) knew that he was a prophet when Adam was between water and clay, the khatm knew that he was a saint when Adam was between water and clay() (Verily) he is the saint, the heir, who imbibes

from the original source (al- wali al-warith al-akhid ani al-asl). He scrutinizes the divine standings (al-mushahid li maratib) and inspects its saints (al-arif bi istihqaqi ashabiha) to give each one what he deserves. He is truly a decency (hasana) from the decencies of the Lord of Messengers (peace and blessing be upon him). Sidi Ali al-Khawas, teacher of the noted Egyptian Shadhilite Sidi Abdelwahhab Shaarani (d. 905/1490) sparked conclusively, Almighty Allah Has Bestowed His Bounty on this [Islamic] Ummah when He allocated two Absolute Seals [i.e. the Khatm and awaited Mahdi]. These saints congregate the divine ranks, stages, bequests, and sanctities in every spiritual domain and sphere. Every saint there has ever been, or will ever be, can only receive from these two Seals, one of whom is the Seal of the sainthood of the elite (wilayat al-khusus), while the other is the one by whom the common sainthood (wilayat alumum) is sealed, for there will be no saint after him until the advent of the Final Hour. Sidna Shaykhs obsolete khatmiya is best understood in the concept of fayd (overflowing). The Shaykh reported that the spiritual overflowings of the khatm which descends from the presence of the Hadra al-Mohammediya (peace and blessing be upon him) were distributed through him over the whole span of the history of the world. After he informed that the cosmos (al-barzakh) is filled by seven hierarchal divine presences (Hadarat): (1) the Hadra Ahmediya, (2) the Hadra Mohammediya, (3) the Hadra of Anbiya (prophets), (4) the Hadra of Khatm al-Awliya, (5) the Hadra of Khatm al-Awliyas disciples, (6) the Hadra of Poles and Saints, (7) the Hadra of their disciples, Whatever descends from the Hadra Mohammediya is received by the Hadra of Anbiya. And whatever descends from the Hadra of Anbiya is received by the Hadra of Khatm al-Awliya. The Khatm distributes what he takes to the Hadra of poles and saints who overflow their own disciples. Moreover I receive a special overflowing from the Hadra Mohammediya (peace and blessing be upon) with no witness save Allah Almighty (wa li-minhu sallahAllah-u alayhi wa sallama mashraban khassan la yaalamuhu illaAllah-u Taala) The special concealed fayd of the khatm on the presences of poles and saints beneath him characterizes the distinctive feature of the katmiya (concealness) complex. Over his katmiya- katmiya throne, Sidna Shaykh is the cosmos of

cosmoses (barzakh al-barazikh) through which the divine overflowings are distributed over the whole span of the history of the world. The katmiya- katmiya complex is expressed in Sidna Shaykhs most famous maxims: My companions are the one meant in, And few from the last (Wa qalilun mina-l akhirin) [Quran 56:14]; My feet are above the necks of all the saints (Qadami ala raqabati kuli Awliya Allah Taala); I will ascend a panel made of light (minbar min nur) at the Trumpet when a speaker exclaims: Here is the leader that supports you (hada imam-ukum al-lladi kana yumiddukum); I am the lord of saints as Sidna Mohammed (peace and blessing be upon him) is the lord of prophets. His spirit supports (ruhuhu tumiddu) the prophets and my spirit (wa ruhi) supports the poles over the whole span of the history of the world (mina al-azal ila al-abad); No saint imbibes (yashrab) or is poured (yusqa) save from our sea from the creation of universe till the Trumpet; Poles (al-aqtab) are compared to me as common people (al-amma) are compared to them; My sword is hung on the sky. Whomever tries to ascend, I shall cut his head; Almighty Allah bestowed on us a very elevated status that must not be revealed (inna lana martabatan taalat fil uluwi inda Allah Taala ila haddin yuhramu dhikruhu). It is not what I have exposed to you (laysa huwa ma afshaytu lakum). No! It is behind it. If I declare (the nature of) it, the truthful Sufis would regard me a disbeliever let alone the common. Speaking on the greatness of Sidna Shaykh, the venerated Khalifa Sidi Ali Harazem ibn al-Arbi Berrada reports in Risalat al-fadhl wal imtinan (The Letter of Merit and Gratitude), Almighty Allah has gathered and assembled for Sidna Shaykh poleness (alqutbaniya) and concealness (al-katmiya), as well as the intercession (shafaa) for the people of his time during the Shaykhs lifetime until his death. Those who reaches the sublime gnosis (maarifa) within his presence a number of one million people multiplied by itself then fourfold (1.000.000*1.000.000*1.000.000*1.000.000). Close to this number are women and the Jinns. Thus this number will be reaching the perfect gnosis (maarifa) and reality (haqiqa), unicity (tawhid) and courtesy (adab), sciences (al-ulum), rectitude (al-istiqama) and the role of lights (anwar) that was orally (mushafahatan) taught to him by the Prophet (peace and blessing be upon him). It is crystal clear that no one has been honoured with such a rank in the past, present and future, save what has Allah bestowed on our Shaykh through the

Prophet (peace and blessing be upon him), who gave him to invoke the Greatest Name of Allah (al-Ism al-Kabir al-Aadham) especially reserved for the Prophet for supplications fulfillment. () Almighty Allah has indeed bestowed His Grace upon Sidna Shaykh and made him the Educator (Shaykh Tarbiya) leading the disciple to the perfect knowledge, the reality, the courtesy, the unicity and rectitude. The Shaykh can lead him to Allah in an eye glance (bi-nadhra) as well as moving him from the obstacles of (the three ranks of Islamdom): Islam (submission), iman (faith) and ihsan (righteousness). He can also embellish him with that eye glance with the three above stances. He can also lead him in intoxication (sukr) or sobriety (sahw) states as well as in a state of death or of eternity; as the Shaykh sees every one with his heart though he is in a remote place and in spite of the fact he is an unbeliever (kafir) or a despot king. By his eye glance, the one will be a knowledgeable (arif) and a God-fearing man (mumin)! Moreover, all these attainments do not need companionship (suhba) or spiritual education (tarbiya). The Shaykh can only look at him (during his life and pass) through his heart whenever this disciple is based. Therefore he turns him to a perfect knowledgeable man. Importantly, Sidna Shaykhs path on human beings (al-bashar) exceed the number of ten thousand. Each path is derived into other paths of gnosis until the Hereafter. The Jinns paths, on the other hand, exceed the number of ten thousand. Each of these paths is also derived into sections until the Hereafter. () Let us mention a letter from our Shaykh in order to appreciate the genuine knowledge and merit, his higher divine position, as well as the great rewards that are reserved for his trustworthy companions (), In the Name of Allah the Compassionate the Merciful. All peace and Blessings be upon our Messenger, his household and his companions. From its writer Ahmed ibn Mohammed Tijani. May Allah bestow upon you all His gratitude and avoid you all the harsh obstacles of this life and that of the Hereafter. Know that the gratitude (fadl) of Allah is beyond borders and He gives it to whom He pleases. (Thus be informed that) there is no saint who can enter his disciples to Heaven without any deeds accountancy except me alone. This is guaranteed to me by the Blessed Prophet (peace and blessing be upon him) (and this) cannot be told or known except in the hereafter. With all these assets, still, we cannot disregard the sanctity of the saints either alive or dead as truly speaking the one who glorifies their sanctity, Allah will

glorify his sanctity and the one who disrespects them, surely he will be disrespected by Almighty Allah, so, again, do not underestimate the sanctity of the saints. Another letter related to the importance of reciting the (Tijani) wird and the eventual spiritual benefits to those performing it: In the Name of Allah the Compassionate the Merciful. All peace and Blessings be upon our Messenger, his household and his companions. Further to your enquiry, know that the Lord of the Universe the Holy Prophet (peace and blessing be upon him) has informed me in the month of Rajab 1200 (1785) about the rank of Qutbania and all his news and information to us are in daylight not in dreams (yaqadatan lamanaman): You are a safe person and all who saw you are savers provided they have died on the faith (iman). He added then, Any one who saw you on a Friday or Monday will enter Paradise without any deeds accountancy and he shall not see hell whether he is obedient or not. Once I have seen what has been told to me by the Prophet (peace and blessing be upon him), I did recall the close companions and those who were kind to me and those who had served me, as most of them were saying to me: We will make you accountable the Day of Judgment if we are to enter hell while you are watching us, I have replied to them: I cannot do anything for you. But after I have seen the love of the Prophet (peace and blessing be upon him) which was frankly conveyed to me, I have asked him mercy and forgiveness for all those who have been courteous to me, as well as those who fed me and those who did not harm me, for those all I sought for them both forgiveness of sins and safety, and that the gates of Heaven are to be opened for them the Day of Judgment and are to enjoy Illiyyin (The highest rank of paradise) next to the Blessed Prophet (peace and blessing be upon him). The Prophet (peace and blessing be upon him) duly replied to me: I have guaranteed such request to you and to your followers and you are to be my neighbours. All what has been mentioned took place in a wakefulness state not in dreams. In another situation the Prophet (peace and blessing be upon him) has told me: You are my dearest friend (anta habibi) as well as the one who loved you (wa kullu man ahabbaka habibi). Verily (you beloved) will not die until he becomes a saint. Also, the Prophet (peace and blessing be upon him) said once to me: I have made to you a lasting guarantee (dhamana) for all what you seek, this I have to say to you and if you are to be consistent and coherent in your sincere love to us, so bear

glad tidings for such good news as you will be meeting your Lord on the ever best finality and whoever loves us will only die as a saint, so grab to this rope. Wassalam (peace be upon you). The letters above constitute the core jurisprudence of Tijaniya order (fiqh at-tariqa). Tijanis are ordered not to visit living saints or the tombs of dead ones. Tijanis are not bound to sin, but could rely on Sidna Shaykhs own guarantee of salvation granted to him by his grandfather (peace and blessing be upon him). This includes anyone who saw him on Mondays and Fridays and did not become his enemy. Sufi brothers are safe from their masters if they leave other orders they are members of, as the Tijaniya in itself summed up all the other orders. Tijanis are ordered not cut themselves from the world and so live in society wearing fancy clothes and eating choice food following the path of blame (tariq al-malamatiya) designated by the Companion Sidna Abu Bakr Siddiq (may Allah be satisfied with him). Malamatiya live under one code: Avoid impressing human beings at all times and avoid seeing their pleasure in any type of characteristic or behaviour. If you do not, you will soon be blamed for what God agency has caused you to possess. Shaykh al-Azhar Sidi Mohammed al-Hafidh al-Misri (d. 1398/1983) articulates, The highly venerable masters in this tariqa have stated that the Tijaniya has the highest standing amongst all, and every Sufi path of education is included in it. It is well-known to those who know the ways of the people of Allah that some of them educate by seclusion (khalwa), others educate without, some others educate through performance of dhikr in secret (sirran), and yet others educate through loud performance (jahran), and some people attain through recitation of prayers upon the Prophet. Likewise, promotion (tarqiya) could be by a glance, or an aim, or a Name, or ecstatic attraction, etc. Thus, every dhikr or particularity that is known in other tariqas does perfectly exist in this (Tijani) tariqa. In it gather all the good traits of other tariqas; and it does stand alone with what is specially endowed to its adherents. Allah said, That is the bounty of Allah; which He gives unto whom He will. Allah is of infinite bounty [62:4].