There is a wise man I know in Karachi. He runs a clothing business and he prays a lot. People respect him and he is nice to them also. But, he hates it when someone goes to him asking about things they should be asking ONLY God. When they place him on a pedestal and treat him like some miracle worker. I hate that too. Because , I firmly believe that ALL power is with God and humans cannot give or take anything from each other without His will. Basically, what we call TAWHID in Islam. ONENESS of GOD and submission to His will. This is the way of thought and life for me. And, for this wise man too.
Once , I was sitting in his office having tea with him and chatting. He told me a wonderful, true and eye-opening story. The level of shirk , or association of partners with the Almighty, is so high all over that people even worship graves. Of course, such action do not affect me personally, but it hurts to see people follow a belief that will only lead them to despair eventually.
Anyway, the story was about a Shaikh who lived near this wise man. The Shaikh was gifted with the knowledge of Quran and was a very saintly and spiritual man who gave only good things to community. People went to him for advice and benefitted from his knowledge and wisdom for years. He was a godly man.
Once, a guy came to him asking him for a charm or miracle of some kind so that he could marry the girl he wanted. The Shaikh asked him what was stopping him. The guy said that the girl’s father did not agree. So, the Shaikh advised him to pray to Allah. He also advised him on basic things such as leading a clean life and being nice to people and not desiring what was not his. He advised the man to convince the girl’s father with the best arguments in the politest of ways. But, the guy insisted on some kind of charm. Some kind of magical trick that will get him the girl. The talk was long and the Shaikh asked him to leave. That he would not encourage such nonsense. But the guy begged and pleaded.
Finally, the Shaikh agreed. He told the guy that he will give him something wrapped in cloth, and that he should keep this with him at all times. This was the sort of thing the guy was asking for. And, he got it. Happily he left.
Two days later he came to the Shaikh, excited and happy!. The father of the girl approached him and agreed to give his daughter to this man in marriage. And, all this because of what the Shaikh gave him. The man brought with him many other candidates and potential followers. He brought sweets and gifts for the Shaikh. The Shaikh was shocked and happy as much as the man, if not more. He thanked Allah and asked the guy to get out what he gave him two days ago. He pulled it out of his pocket and said.. THIS did it!. .. Your power worked. WOW!..
The Shaikh asked him to open it and get out the piece of paper inside. He got it out. Then the Shaikh asked the man to read it out loud. The man read it out and it said: YA ALLAH, I KNOW NOT and THIS MAN BELIEVES NOT!
Surprised, he asked the Shaikh what this was. The Shaikh told him: You insisted on something that leads to Shirk. You begged and pleaded and pestered me. So, I got angry and wrote this, wrapped it in a cloth and gave it to you so that you would leave me alone! The father of the girl did not agree because of this piece of paper. He agreed because he probably changed his mind or decided to make his daughter happy. I really don’t know. All I can say is that Allah helped you.
There is NO such thing as a Sufi Saint. There is wise, and there is stupid and there is lost. Most of us are lost. And many of us are stupid and a few of us are wise. The Shaikh was a wise man who made his point by doing what he did. The way of the Prophet PBUH was the ONLY way to a better life, death and after life. Our nations have discarded that way and have developed SO many different ways, adding to their failures and misery. How is it possible that you worship ONE god and then pray to a grave? Or to a man? Why would any man, no matter how spiritual or powerful seek people to serve him and treat him like a God?
People, within you is the healer, the wise man, the saint and the devil. Your choices and actions define you. Most of the people we call the TOP Sufis of the world were , in fact, excellent and complete Muslims who practiced religion the way it SHOULD be practiced. They NEVER asked anyone to build their tomb when they die and they never promised anyone that they could give them anything. They merely encouraged people to love and worship the ONE true GOD. And, this was their reality. When Allah becomes the reality of a man and there is constant interaction with God , good things DO happen. A man DOES get more power and wisdom. And, finally, the intensity of efforts define and decide the station and status of a person. But, it never makes him a God. This is something our people do not understand nor comprehend and this is what causes all this misery in their lives.
Follow the way of the Prophet Muhammad Ibn Abdullah , may the Peace and Blessing of Allah be upon him.