A Journey to God – The Start of the Journey

(Ibn Ata’s Words of Wisdom: Part 1)

“There is no real distance between you and Him in order for you to journey.

And the connection between you and Him is not cut such that you must mend it.”

This is a journey.

A journey for Allah, with Allah, and to Allah Almighty.

Although Allah is near to us, we are journeying to Him because we are far; but He is close to us. He said:

“And if my servants ask you about Me, behold I am near…” (2:186)

This verse is the inspiration behind this word of wisdom. Ibn Ata’ Allah, may Allah have mercy on him, was a scholar of Islam and therefore he is always inspired by the sources of Islam.

Who Was Ibn Ata’?

He was a Maliki scholar from the eighth century hijri, 14th century CE, but he came from a perspective of the revelation of the Quran and the Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).

Therefore these words of wisdom are simply reflections upon particular verses and particularly hadiths of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) and put in an eloquent and a way that is understood.

This is inspired by one of the Names of Allah Al-Qarib (The Near).

The Fiqh of the Heart

Ibn Ata’ is a faqih in the two senses of fiqh. There are actually two senses:

1- Fiqh of the Body, which is related to how to pray, how to give zakah, how to perform Hajj, family law, financial dealings… etc.

2- Fiqh of the Heart.

Ibn Ata’ was a faqih actually in both senses, and therefore he produced these pieces of wisdom and reflections or what we can call maxims in terms of his fiqh of the heart.

This is called Sufism, in some senses, and names are not important. We can call it the science of the heart, we can call it the science of the journeying…

The fact that some Sufis had deviated with Sufism and had added things to Islam that are not part of Islam should not hinder us from benefiting from this great science and following the right course and choosing the right people who represented the true ideas of Islam.

A Journey to Allah

Every knowledge of Islam had seen deviations as well as correct views. And every fiqhi view or any understanding is subject to error.

Therefore, this is not supposed to hinder us from benefiting. And the criterion here is how close the sheikh was to the Book of Allah and the Sunnah of His messenger (peace be upon him).

We will start this journey by taking these wisdoms inspired by the Book of Allah and the Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).

The journey is in steps, every step takes you closer to Allah Almighty.

Let us start the journey in the name of Allah Almighty.

A Journey to God (Folder)

About Dr. Jasser Auda
Jasser Auda is a Professor and Al-Shatibi Chair of Maqasid Studies at the International Peace College South Africa, the Executive Director of the Maqasid Institute, a global think tank based in London, and a Visiting Professor of Islamic Law at Carleton University in Canada. He is a Founding and Board Member of the International Union of Muslim Scholars, Member of the European Council for Fatwa and Research, Fellow of the Islamic Fiqh Academy of India, and General Secretary of Yaqazat Feker, a popular youth organization in Egypt. He has a PhD in the philosophy of Islamic law from University of Wales in the UK, and a PhD in systems analysis from University of Waterloo in Canada. Early in his life, he memorized the Quran and studied Fiqh, Usul and Hadith in the halaqas of Al-Azhar Mosque in Cairo. He previously worked as: Founding Director of the Maqasid Center in the Philosophy of Islamic Law in London; Founding Deputy Director of the Center for Islamic Ethics in Doha; professor at the University of Waterloo in Canada, Alexandria University in Egypt, Islamic University of Novi Pazar in Sanjaq, Qatar Faculty of Islamic Studies, and the American University of Sharjah. He lectured and trained on Islam, its law, spirituality and ethics in dozens of other universities and organizations around the world. He wrote 25 books in Arabic and English, some of which were translated to 25 languages.