Right Reason VS. Right Reasoning
Hakim ul Ummah, Hazrat Thanwi (RA) received a letter from a person who requested some spiritual advice.
In reply to this person’s letter Hazrat Thanwi (RA) wrote, “Read twenty of my transcribed spiritual discourses and practice upon them, then inform me of your condition, i.e. whether or not you feel some spiritually elated and or change within your heart…”
After reading twenty lectures, the person replied, “Unfortunately, I have not found any change within myself at all…”
Hazrat Thanwi (RA) wrote back, “Either you have not read those lectures with the intention of spiritual rectification, or the subject-matter of those lectures you read were not spiritually-related…Or there is also a possibility that there is nothing within you which needs rectification…”
The person wrote back and admitted that he did not read the lectures with the specific intention of spiritual rectification, to which Hazrat Thanwi (RA) replied that he should do so.
The last letter of this person came saying, “Alhamdulillah, I have acquired enormous spiritual benefit from those lectures! An amazing change has now taken place from within…”
Hazrat Thanwi (RA) then comments: “Now if I would have merely prescribed some zikr or something, then he would not have benefited so greatly.
Truly, if a person does something the right way, fulfilling its rights and conditions, then Allah Ta`ala will definitely put benefit in that thing.
But our problem is that we do things according to our own understanding and deficient conjecture, due to which we end up frustrated and confused.
Today’s fake peers and money-making, Sufi shaikhs have cheated the people, taking money from them and giving them wazifas to read… Is there such a thing as becoming spiritually rectified through wazifas and awraad? Islaah and spiritual rectification can only come from spiritual rectification.”
Translator’s Note: This in no way is intended to belittle the power of dua’s Azkaar, which also play an essential role in spiritual rectification. Rather this means that if a person does not make an effort on leaving sins and working on changing his evil qualities, and inculcating within himself good character, then simply reading a thousand wazifas and awraad, without a practical effort in abstaining from evil and trying to do good deeds, then these awraad alone will not rectify him.