Discipline of The Seeker


This is a book wrote by a saint lived in Hadramaut for 1044 to 1132 Hijri. He was Habib Abdullah bin Alawi Al-Haddad or famously called as Imam Haddad. This book named “Discipline of The Seeker

أداب سلوك المريد للإمام عبد الله بن علوي الحداد

Masjid, Book, and Tomb of Habib Abdullah bin 'Alawi Al-Haddad (1044-1132 H)

This book describe the way which every seeker must trough away. Imam al-Haddad started describing it at the very early period of soul level and ended it with characteristics of the qualified seekers. I just try to compile these steps in a short way, in which talk about what kind of discipline must be taken by everyone who want to get spiritual enlightment.

There are four parts of aspect which every seeker must do. There are five parts :

1.       Al-I’daad (preparation stage). In this stage, a seeker must fill in his heart by spirit of change and clean it from every disease. And so, he must take care of heart’s condition on a stable position in this worldly life.
2.       Riyadhatu adz-Dzawahir (physical exercise). Discipline of physical side is one of important thing in a seeking process. It’s known as syari’ah.
3.       Riyadhatu al-Bawaathin (spiritual exercise). Beside of physical exercise, human have their spiritual shape that must be trained by a right way and portion. In order to achieve noble station (maqaamaat), Imam Haddad emphasize that physical exercise must be balanced by spiritual exercise.
4.       Al-Wishaal (a connection). This part talks about a vital connection between Muraad (the guider) and Muriid (the seeker).
5.       Khatimah (the end of book). Imam Haddad shows us characteristics of a true seeker in this last part. The characteristics describe how the success seeker is.

There are 19 stairs of discipline in this journey, stand on the board of Islamic sufism. May Allah guide our feet to walk on pious way and hold our hand to be never fall in despotic valley.

Al-I’daad; Preparation Stage. At least there are three efforts for the seeker;

First, Al-Iradah; the sprit of change. A strong will (Ba’itsun Qawiyyun) is an important foothold to take next steps. No action occurs without spirit and no goal reached without it. This is something that every seeker must have. “I want to change to be a better person.”

Second, At-Taubah; atonement. Start everything by clean the heart up, by praise The Lord’s forgiveness. Tell Him to forgive all of your sins, and it called as ‘taubah’. There are three to four sides of Taubah, and every side must be fill in. “O my Lord, forgive me, don’t be angry with me, erase all of my sins. Guide me on Your way with your righteous man.”

Third; taking care heart’s condition. The very priceless thing of the seekers is their heart, this journey is about guard their heart from any diseases. Many diseases could attack it suddenly, whereever whenever however. The root of these disease is; loving this wordly life, or ‘hubbu ad-dunya’. It places on the very central of heart’s diseases, it is like a head of a complete body. One time you cut the head off, that time the body will exactly die.

Riyadhatu al-Dzawahir; Physical Exercise. There are three main items;

First, Kaffu al-Jawarikh; organs maintainance. It is about how we manage our artificial senses of our body, such as mouth, eyes, ears, hands, foots, sex, and stomach. Saving them far away from any falseous deeds is important for our spiritual journey. Especially about what we eat and what we consume to fill our biological needs.

Second, Khariishun li al-‘Ibaadah; handy for worship. The seeker must be the most enthusiast person in worship as an oncoming step closer to God. Nearer you are, faster you find what you seek. By increase intensity of Qur’an recitation, fasting in a long day and get up for prayer in end of night.

Third, As-Shalawaat; prayers. The main connection between a muslim with his creator is shalat. It is supposed to every muslim to perform five time daily prayers in the best concentration. Without concentrate your mind and heart, you get nothing in your connection. It is important to perform prayers in a group with other muslims. And fill the time after fajr and so between maghrib and isya by meditation for a while.

To be continued...

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