Role Playing

It is important that in the path of sulook, everyone plays their appropriate role. There are three primary roles that a person can play. A.) The role of the Shaykh, B.) The role of the mureed C.) The role of mureeds amongst themselves and with one another.

The role of the Shaykh is only to show the mureeds and those under his islah the right path. It is not the job requirement of the Shaykh nor is it his role to force the mureeds to do certain things or to abstain from certain things. The role of the Shaykh is that of a guide, to put it very simply.

The role of the mureed is to obey the Shaykh unconditionally without objection. The role of the mureed is to tread the path shown to them by the Shaykh. The Shaykh will show the path, and the mureeds should tread the shown path. Ultimately, the decision is up to the mureed whether or not to implement the teaching of the Shaykh. If the mureed obeys the Shaykh, it is only to the benefit of the mureed, and if the mureed decides to disregard the teachings of the Shaykh then it is only to the detriment of the mureed.

The role of mureeds within themselves is to be well-wishers of one another, and to deal with each other respectfully. They should help each other out in treading the path shown to them by their Shaykh. Some mureeds assume the position of the Shaykh and try to make islah of other mureeds. The intention may be good, but the method is incorrect. If one mureed notices another mureed involved in evil, then the Shaykh should be notified in private so that the Shaykh can play his part and rectify the problem.

If everyone plays their part properly, problems will not arise. Problems crop up when lines are crossed, and people assume positions and roles which they are not entitled to. We pray to Allah that He grant us the taufeeq to fulfill the rights of our Shaykhs, mureeds, and fellow mureeds. Aameen!

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4 Comments on “Role Playing”

  1. Nabeel Khan Says:

    Assalaamu alaikum,
    Maulana Tameem Sahib,
    Masha Allah, your comment was soo wonderful, I thought it deserved to be its own post.
    Wassalaam,
    Nabeel

  2. Nabeel Khan Says:

    Wa’laikum Assalaam,
    Br. Imran,
    Jazakallah for the correction. It has been changed.
    Wassalaam,
    Nabeel Khan

  3. Imran Khan Says:

    assalamu’ alaikum respected brother,

    I would simply like to point out the following typographical error, “….and if the mureed decides to disregard the teachings of the Shaykh then it is only to the detriment of the Shaykh.”

    In the above, the last statement should be “detriment of the mureed, instead of Shaykh, right?”. Jazak Allah.

  4. Abu Yahya Says:

    Jazakallahu Khairan, Shaikh Nabeel for this very valuable advice. I have heard Hazratwala damat baraktuhum say that humbleness is the key to success in this path of sulook. He said, “Apnay aap ko mitaa do, bas…” One should just simply annhiliate himself.

    In other words, the mureed should just work and self-annhiliation, to destroy his ego that ‘I am also somebody’.

    If the mureed gets angry when the shaikh reprimands him or becomes annoyed or agitated, then this is a major sign of arrogance. The mureed must check himself before he wrecks himself! Yes… all jokes aside, but it should clearly be said without beating around the bush.

    That mureed which causes the slightest bit of takleef to his shaikh, will be dangerously heading to his own destruction.

    Just look at shaytan’s objection to Allah Ta’ala when the Almighty commanded him to prostrate to Adam (alaihis salam). No one can argue that shaytan did not have a point. He was logically making sense. “You created me from fire and Adam from dust, so how does it make sense for a superior thing (like fire) to prostrate to something inferior (like dust)?” Sounds pretty I.Q. right?…. WRONG!

    Shaytan was making excuses before the command of Allah because he had his own ego and selfish opinions before his eyes. If the zaalim would have annhiliated his selfish ego, and would have put the command of the True Beloved before his eyes, then he would have never objected and disobeyed. Thus, he would have never been eternally cursed.

    From this we see that objection, rebelliousness, and questioning the order of righteous authority is actually the inate habit of iblees the accursed and this rises from self-conceit.

    Hazratwala (damat barakatuhum) also said about self-conceit… this disease actually effects the foolish and naive people. The fool who thinks his shaikh is on his case should ponder for a moment and think, “Will the shaikh ever stop him from something beneficial, or will he prevent him from doing something which is detrimental to him?”

    What need does the shaikh get out of going behind anyone’s case? Does the shaikh have no other occupation other than trying to make the mureed’s life miserable? If so… then what does he get out of it?

    Subhanallah. In actuality, the shaikh should be looked at with the reverence and esteem that he is the inheritor of the Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) who has been described by Allah Ta`ala to be:

    حريص عليكم، بالمؤمنين رؤوف رحيم

    Ardently anxious for you (to be guided and to attain everlasting success through spiritual rectification)…

    Kind and merciful for the beleivers. (Sura Taubah)

    May Allah Ta`ala grant us such hearts to see.


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