Reading Books Written By True Scholars

It is written in Irshad-ut-talibin, "When a Murshid al-kamil [1] dies, he does not cease giving fayd [2]. He even gives more. But, men's contact with the dead is unlike their contact with the living. For this reason, little fayd is received from the soul of a dead one. Those who have reached fana and baqa have extensive relations with a dead one, almost as much as when he was alive. Therefore, they get much fayd; yet still they get more when the latter is alive. Murshids facilitate those in their company to adhere to the Shariat [3], and inspire them with love and respect through all their manners and words, thus causing them to receive more fayd." As it is seen, it is necessary to look for a murshid. Though a faithful and pure Muslim can receive fayd from an Awliya [4], dead or alive, the living Awliya will instruct him on the tasks that he has to do. He will correct his faults, thus it will become easy to receive much more fayd. On the contrary, the dead cannot say anything. They cannot show the way. They cannot correct his faults. His receiving fayd comes to an end. He cannot be taught through inspiration or dreams by the dead either. Delusion, fancy or the Devil might get involved in inspirations and dreams. And the inspirations and dreams that are not involved with them, may be connotative and in need of an explanation; the correct ones cannot be distinguished from the false ones. The gain would be very valuable, but the loss is much more dangerous. Nevertheless, in case one cannot find a real murshid, one should not fall into the traps of false and ignorant murshids. Rather, he should try to receive fayd from the souls of the dead ones. For attaining this, it is necessary to have the Ahl as-sunnat [5] belief and to obey the Shariat, to read books written by real scholars, and to make sohbat [6] with those who read the books of true Islamic savants. A little child likes its mother best and trusts in her. When it becomes wise enough, it trusts its father more, relies on him and gets use from him. When it begins going to school or to work, it adheres to its teacher or master and gets use from him. Allah's divine way is so. Likewise, the earnings of the soul are acquired first through parents and then through the murshid and then through Rasulullah 'sall-Allahu alaihi wa sallam'.

[1] murshid al-kamil: great guide who has attained to perfection and is able to assist others.
[2] fayz After a Muslim has adapted himself completely to the Shari'at of Muhammad 'alaihis-salam, inexplicable pieces of knowledge begin to pour into his heart. This occult, esoteric and subtle kind of knowledge is called fayz, pronounced /feiz/.
[3] Shari'at: (pl. of Shari'a) i) rules and commandments as a whole of the religion. ii) religion.
[4] awliya: (pl. of Wali) a person loved by Allahu ta'ala.
[5] Ahl as-Sunna (wa'l-Jama'a): the true pious Muslims who follow as-Sahabat al-kiram. These are called Sunni Muslims. A Sunni Muslim adapts himself to one of the four Madhhabs. These madhhabs are Hanafi, Maliki, Shafi'i and Hanbali.
[6] Sohbat: to make friends, to stay together for a long time; to talk to one another and to derive use from one another.