بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
و الصلاة و السلام على أشرف المرسلين
و على اله و اصحابه أجمعين
As the sun was setting and the glow of the twilight invaded the sky,we asked to the Shaykh Muhammad Fawziy al-Karkariy (qudissa sirruh) the autorisation to read the sidi Ibn ‘Ata Allah Iskandari (qudissa sirruh) Hikam and our Shaykh replied:
“Know that it was said by the scholars that if there had not been the Qur’an, the reading of the Hikam would suffice for the Prayer.
After leaving the khalwa, our shaykh, may Allah take him in his mercy, advised us to read only two books: the Hikam of the Imam Ibn Ata Allah Iskandari (qudissa sirruh) and the collection of poems of the Shaykh Ahmad al alawi (radiAllah anhu). We gave so much importance to the words of our shaykh that we had only three books for our journey … the book of Allah, the collection of poems and the Hikam.
Having no place to isolate us, we went to the workplace of our brother. At the bottom of his business was a room that could be locked. It was there that for several months, after having performed our ablutions and sitting in the direction of the Qibla, we were reading the Hikam. Not only we were reading it, but we was noting the understandings that caming to us when we were reading the wisdoms … And we did not pass on to another Hikam until we applied its wisdom to our own ego. When we was reading a new wisdom, we was doing everything to comply, sometimes it took several weeks, sometimes a few days … the main thing was to apply them. We stayed in this state for weeks … To the point that we considered the book of Hikam as our own Friend, and what a Friend! When we were hading the fire of love in us, we were reading the poems of shaykh Ahmad al alawi (qudissa sirruh).
It was thus that several weeks passed until the day when we were reading a Hikam who shaken us and which we will never forget. It was a wisdom explaining the true meaning of the confident surrender in Allah (tawakkul). And the example given was that of sayiduna Ibrahim (alayhi salam), when he was catapulted in the fire after refusing the help of an angel and surrendered entirely to his Lord. A spiritual state seizes us then, and at the very moment we emptied our pockets of all they contained … and we went out into the street with the firm intention of knowing and living the Tawakkul.
We fasted the day and spent our nights in the cemeteries invoking our Lord … At our first siyaha that lasted 10 years, if we did not find food to feed us then we went to beg in the streets but during this second siyaha, we asked Allah to feed us and we swore that only what would come from Him would enter into our mouth. If after the Maghreb prayer we could not found food, then to cut the fast, we would lick our fingers and mix our saliva with the soil that was under our feet before swallowing it. For several days, we suffered from hunger and cold. Do not imagine that in our nafs we had no doubt, quite the contrary, we asked ourselves: “what could we eat, where could we sleep” … but every time, it is towards our Lord, we were turning … We asked him to provide for us. This lasted several months, until the day when Allah permitted us to be in such a state that if we came to desire a dirham, we would find this dirham in front of us on the ground. If we wanted bread, we were finding the bread on the ground … Subjugated, we implored Allah to explain us how it was possible … Maybe the stone changed into money? Could it fall from the sky? Allah answered our request. At the end of the asr prayer, in front of the mosque, we saw a shopkeeper counting his bills … then, as if by a miracle, a bill came out of the bundle, flew into the sky and ended up landing right in front of us. We took the bill and returned it to the merchant. After counting his bundle, he swore that no money was missing. We swore to him that we had seen this bill come out of his bundle, to which he replied in the negative.
After almost a year in this state, we went back into the business of our brother to reread the Hikam. How naive we were. We thought that when the Imam Ibn Ata Allah iskandari spoke of the mirror of the heart, he was speaking of a true mirror. We was saying to ourself that if the word mirror had been used, it was because a secret was hiding behind. Then we placed ourselves in front of the mirror and began the dhikr of Ism Al-Adham (Allah), with the firm intention of disappearing from the mirror… for hours and days, we invoked Allah in front of this mirror until the day we completely faded away. We were hading no reflection and when we looked at our body it was as if it had become invisible. We were seeing the wall behind our backs, as if we had became an eye without a body. So, we thought, if we no longer have body, then why not enter the mirror? When we entered the mirror, we reached understandings that we can not express… It was beginning from a misunderstanding but Allah judged our intention as good and answered our request. Understand when I tell you that Allah is good and that His goodness has no limit. That He is beautiful and that His beauty can not be contained … How not to love Him?
After the departure to the last abode for our Shaykh, we became Shaykh after receiving the authorization of our Shaykh then that of the Prophet ﷺ in the state of awakening then that coming directly from Allah ﷻ, the first courses we gave were tafsir of the poems of the shaykh Ahmad al alawiy (qudissa sirruh) and then the tafsir of the Hikam of the Imam Ibn Ata Allah Iskandariy (qudissa sirruh). For nearly two years, we explained to the fuqarah the senses of the Hikam. We who did not understand any book,wee became of those who teach books … We gave so much importance to these two books that after completing their tafsir, Shaykh Ahmad al-Alawiy (qudissa sirruh) and Imam ibn Ata Allah Iskandari (qudissa sirruh) came in person in the malakut to thank us. Shaykh Ahmad al-Alawi (qudissa sirruh) then showed us his zawiya in Mostaghanem and showed us how he slayed a ram to inaugurate his Zawiya and that is why we also sacrificed a ram for the Zawiya inauguration.
The karamats and unveilings are pleasant to listen but know that everything we say to you is only for you to realize the importance of taste. Reading a book as one reads the newspaper makes no sense. How many people have libraries on the Tassawuf but are unable to explain a single sentence of the books they claim to read? Read with your ego and you will not draw anything from the books, read them with your heart and the realities will begin to appear, read them with your soul and you will taste the spiritual senses, read them with the secrets and you will draw from them infinite understandings. It is by this taste and love that we remain with you, that we have married, that we had children … We only became Shaykh by having read two books.”