Positive Mysticism

Mysticism and Jihad

It is God's will that the human nature head for perfection in this world. There are many impurities and thorns on the path to perfection that can harm not only pure hearts, but also others. Thus, in true mysticism, both the development and training of pure human natures and uprooting all impurities and thorns are considered as important. In other words, guiding those rich in potentials toward perfection on one hand, and removing disruptive persons from the path to development on the other are both of high importance in true mysticism. This is why jihad against enemies – internal or external – is a basic principle in original mysticism. 

Criticizing Nonsense

Those who claimed 'I am truth,' 'There is nothing in me except for God,' and 'How pure and glorious my  being is!' have definitely activated their 'self' to an expanded level of mental control over the universe; however, having reached that unusual state, instead of continuing their progress toward the peaks of divine perfection, they overemphasized their 'self' – which could have gone on to reach God – stopped making progress, using their self like a mirror spread before them, thinking that is divine greatness. Vertigo halfway on the path (even if we can say they have gone half the way) could not distinguish molten iron from real fire. If they had processed their 'self' correctly, they would say, 'I am from truth, with truth, and heading for truth' instead of, 'I am truth,' 'There is nothing in me except things that are from God, for God, and heading for God,' instead of, 'There is nothing in me except for God,' and, 'How glorious and pure God is!" and, 'My greatness, dignity and existence is from God, for God and heading for God!' instead of, 'How glorious and pure my being is!' 

Some intellectuals, including Jalal-addin Mohammad Molawi (Rumi), regard such expressions as rude, and attempt to correct them by saying that man is capable of reaching God's divine presence, but when he does, he mistakes God with himself, and incorrectly says these things. Jalal-addin Mohammad Molawi  adds that despite all this, being present but rude is better than not being there at all.

بی ادب حاضر ز غايب خوشتر استحلقه گر چه کژ بـود، نی بر در اسـت

(Being rude and present is better than being absent; the handle of a door may not be straight, but it’s still there on the door!)

Such excuses are rude themselves, and being in God's presence is incomparable to any other presence. When in the presence of God, man cannot make a single mistake, let alone be rude. Even if his rudeness were possibly excusable – which it absolutely is not – such words are academically and developmentally wrong and spread corruption in the society. Being in God's presence and claiming to be truth itself should not be mistaken.

Religion, Rule of Life, and the Truth

Some of those who claim to be mystics believe that religion (shari 'at), rule of life (tariqat) and the truth (haqiqat) are distinctly separate things. Religion, they claim, consists of the means that guides the mystic seeker toward the truth – his ultimate goal – and when he reaches it, he needs religion no more. 

Religion, the rule of life and the truth are different forms of the same reality, preached by all holy prophets, men of wisdom and true mystics. Literally, Shari 'at refers to the way of reaching what man or God wants. Thus, religion – Shari 'at – includes the rule of life, too. Islam and the Holy Koran also believe that having faith in God and doing good deeds is religion, and is the way to reach spiritual perfection. What is important is the path to the truth, but Jalal-addin Mohammad Molawi (Rumi) and some others believe that having reached the truth, man does not need religion or rule of life anymore.

The truth has also been described by various expressions, like "reaching God" or "perceiving the absolute mortality of the universe in divinity."

The truth should not be regarded as the ultimate point of development and perfection – so that religion and rule of life are subsequent stages on its path. Any step man takes obeying God's orders is virtually moving toward the truth. Such a spiritual movement and progress should not end at a point entitled "reaching the truth." The process infinitely goes on, and religion, rule of life and the truth are combinable at any level. In fact, man's distance from God should not be considered as infinite, on which religion and rule of life are located, and the truth is situated at the end of the path. If the mystic intends to enter divine attraction, he can reach his destination without going through the path. When Moses asked God how he could reach Him, God replied, "The decision to reach Me means reaching Me." 

It is wrong to believe that the truth is the end of a long path of spiritual endeavor, and that religion and rule of life are milestones on the path. Any footstep we take in accordance with God's commands, the slightest particle of dust we remove from the mirror of our souls, takes us closer and closer to the absolute truth.

Separating religion, rule of life and the truth from each other can lead to these harmful effects:

1-Those in search of the truth will be deprived of it, for religion is not virtually desirable; only following it is the means to reach the truth.

2-There will be a conflict between science and wisdom – the best tools for seeking the truth –and love and mysticism.

3-Although they are not, materials and meanings will seem to conflict; it is, in fact, the incapability of the mystic in realizing the natural cycle.

Mystic Change

Mystic change provides the knowledge for the preliminary action, which in turn provides the preliminary for the next knowledge. The first step of knowledge makes man "wake up," and deeply dominate the universe. This knowledge makes him take action, competing against others in doing good and heading for perfection. Each deed done with pure intentions leads to new knowledge.

If man takes each reality he understands seriously, his knowledge will increase, and his deeds will also become more meaningful. Anything fulfilling one of man's needs is a truth to be taken seriously. In the initial steps of evolutional mystic change, the knowledge of the truth and its actions are considered as separate, but when man's character develops mystically, his knowledge and action will find supreme unity.


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