Divine love is the love for Allah which becomes intense and dominates all other loves. Allah Almighty says in Surah Al-Baqarah. “But those who believe, love Allah the most.” (2:165). Love of Allah is exactly the love for Prophet Mohammad (pbuh).
When the intensity of Divine love dominates a man’s heart, he sees nothing but the Beloved.
According to Rumi, ‘’Love is the flame which when flares up burns everything except the Beloved.’’
Some people say that love has nothing to do with the Quran and faith. These are fabricated stories of Sufis and poets. While this is not the case. The connection of love with faith is that when faith is perfect and reaches its perfection, it becomes Divine love.
Relation between Faith and Love
Faith and love are not two different things.
The journey of Sufism begins with faith.
The journey of Sufism ends in Divine Love.
Faith is the ladder.
Love is the destination.
Faith remains in the veil.
Love lifts the veil
Faith does not complete without love.
Sayings on Divine Love
‘’The most precious asset for a Muslim is his faith but for the lover of Allah it is only waystation. The true destination of lover is union with Divine Reality which is gained through Divine love.’’
A man should dive in the river of love. If the waves carry him to the shore then,
فَقَدْ فَازَ فَوْزًا عَظِیْمًا
(He) will surely achieve a great success, (33:71) or if he gets trapped with alligators then
فَقَدْ وَقَعَ اَجْرُہٗ عَلَی اللّٰہ
His reward with Allah is assured. (4:100). (Ishq e Rasool e Kareem by Nawaz Romani)
According to Faiz Ahmed Faiz, it is impossible to imagine victory or defeat in the game of love. Here, defeat is also victory:
گر بازی عشق کی بازی ہے جو چاہو لگا دو ڈر کیسا
گر جیت گئے تو کیا کہنا، ہارے بھی تو بازی مات نہیں
Explanation: ‘’If you are playing the game of love, do not fear to sacrifice everything. In this game winning or losing does not matter. If you win, it is marvelous but being defeated also means the game is not lost.’’
The sustenance of the soul is love. Divine love leads to the gnosis (marifa) of Allah. All the prophets and saints had Divine love.
Divine Love of Prophet Shuaib
It is narrated that Prophet Shuaib used to cry a lot in his passion and love for Allah. He cried to the extent of blindness. Allah Almighty restored his sight. Some of his followers said, “O Prophet of Allah! You should not shed tears lest you waste your sight again.” The flames of love did not let him rest. He kept crying in love for Allah. His eyesight disappeared and restored the second time too. This repeated three times.
Angel Gabriel visited Prophet Shuaib with a revelation and said that Allah Almighty says, “O Shoaib! If you cry out of fear of Hell, He has given you peace, and if you cry for Paradise, He has made Paradise obligatory upon you.” Prophet Shuaib said, “O Allah! I have neither the joy of heaven nor the fear of hell. I am only crying for you in your love, passion and in your court.”
Hearing the words of His Prophet, Allah Almighty sent revelation,
“O Shuaib! Love is a disease. There is no cure for love. There is no limit to the grief of love. If there is a cure, then it is My Divine vision only. O Shuaib! Keep crying, keep crying and keep crying. There is no one to cure your situation except Me. O Shuaib! There is no relief for you except My Divine vision. Therefore, your comfort and peace lie with My love and I am the Divine reality of it.” (Ishq e Rasool e Kareem by Nawaz Romani)
Iqbal and Divine Love
With the blessing of love, the lover gets immense strength, he gains authority over innerself, time, space and even universe.
Allama Iqbal says in Bal-e-Jibril:
عشق کی اک جست نے طے کر دیا قصہ تمام
اس زمین و آسماں کو بے کراں سمجھا تھا میں
Explanation: A single step in Divine love covered the entire journey and took me to the spiritual heights, otherwise I used to think that earth and heaven were too immense to be surpassed.
صدقِ خلیلؑ بھی ہے عشق، صبرِ حسینؓ بھی ہے عشق
معرکۂ وجود میں بدر و حنین بھی ہے عشق
Explanation: The truthfulness of Prophet Abraham and belief in the Oneness of Allah were reasons to put him into fire but the fire turned cool. His belief was firm due to his love so the courage to jump into the fire was because of love. In the battle of Karbala the patience of Husayn ibn Ali (r.a) was also due to his love for Allah which took him to the highest station of surrender and submission.
In the battles of Badr and Hunain the Companions following the Holy Prophet fought in love for the Prophet and became victorious.
عشق دم جبرئیل، عشق دل مصطفیؐ
عشق خدا کا رسول، عشق خدا کا کلام
Explanation: Divine love is the angelic light and also the Holy Prophet’s inward which was all replete with it. Love is the soul of true seekers who were also created by love and for love. The true message of Allah is conveyed to man through love. Love is the messenger as well as word of Allah.
The love of Allah for Prophet Mohammad (PBUH)
Allah did the first love with His Beloved Prophet Mohammad (pbuh). Shah Waliullah Dehlawi says:
‘’When Allah Almighty created (Divine) light of His Beloved, He said:
اَنْتَ عشقی وَ اَنَا عشقک
O my Beloved, the manifestation of eternal beauty and the masterpiece of my power & authority, you are My love and I am your love.’’ (Ishq e Rasool e Kareem by Nawaz Romani)
When Divine love (Allah Almighty) adorned his court, He first revealed the (Divine) light of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) from His Holy self. Then He created all souls from (Divine) light of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh). This is the Mohammadan Reality and Allah created universe for its manifestation.
The Holy Prophet (pbuh) himself said:
اَنَا مِنْ نُّوْرِ اللّٰہِ تَعَالٰی وَکُلُّ خَلَائِقِ مِنْ نُّوْرِیْ
Meaning: ‘’I am from the (Divine) light of Allah and all the creation is from my (Divine) light.’’
As Allama Iqbal says in Bal-e-Jibreel:
نگاہِ عشق و مستی میں وہی اوّل وہی آخر
وہی قرآں وہی فرقاں وہی یٰسین وہی طٰہٰ
Explanation: The intoxicated lovers of Divinity with their rapturous eyes full of intense love witness the truth and reality of the Holy Prophet. They know that Prophet Mohammad is the First and the Last. He is First because he is the first manifestation of Allah and the Last because he is the seal of Prophethood as well as immortal with Allah. He is the Holy Quran because his life is the practical Quran. Yasin and Taha are the names of suras as well as his attributive names and he himself says, ‘’Only Allah knows my reality,’’ as the meaning of these names are also unknown to people. (Bal-e-Jibril)
Examples from Quran
- Allah Almighty has expressed His love and affection for His Beloved, Prophet Mohammad pbuh at innumerable places in Quran. The words and obedience of Allah and Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) are same.
As Allah says in Quran:
مَنْ یُّطِعِ الرَّسُوْلَ فَقَدْ اَطَاعَ اللّٰہ
Meaning: ‘’Whoever obeys the Messenger (pbuh) obeys Allah indeed.’’ (4:80)
- Those who pledged allegiance to the Holy Prophet (pbuh) in reality pledged allegiance to Allah. As mentioned in Quran, ‘’ (O Beloved!) Indeed, those who pledge allegiance to you in fact pledge allegiance to Allah alone. Allah’s hand is over their hands (in the form of your hand).” (48:10)
- Allah has made His Beloved the mercy of all the worlds. Allah says in Quran:
وَمَآ اَرْسَلْنٰکَ اِلَّا رَحْمَۃً لِّلْعٰلَمِیْنَ
Meaning: And, (O Esteemed Messenger,) We have not sent you but as a mercy for all the worlds. (21:107)
The ‘’worlds’’ includes human beings, jinns, animals and inanimate objects.
Allah Almighty created His Beloved in the most honorable family.
Aisha Bint Abu Bakr narrates the Holy Prophet (pbuh) said, “Once Gabriel came and said, O Messenger of Allah (pbuh) I have searched every corner of the earth but I did not see anyone better than you and I did not see any tribe better than Banu Hashim.” (Al-Tabarani)
Event of Miraj / Night of Ascension
Allah Almighty’s beautiful expression of love for His Beloved is the event of Miraj. Allah Almighty describes this meeting of the Lover and the Beloved in Quran as:
Meaning: ‘’By the bright star (Mohammad [pbuh]) when (he ascended during the Ascension Night in the twinkling of an eye and) descended. He who bestowed on you his companionship (i.e, the Messenger who made you his companions by blessing you with his companionship,) has never lost his way, nor has he (ever) strayed from the right path. And does not speak out of his (own) desire. His speech is nothing but Revelation, which is sent to him. (The Lord) of Mighty Powers (directly) conferred on him (perfect) knowledge. He Who is absolute beauty. He (the Effulgence of Beauty) decided to unveil (Himself). And he (Mohammad [pbuh]) was on the uppermost horizon (of the realm of creation during the Ascension Night i.e., on the apex of created cosmos). Then He (the Lord of Honour) drew closer (to His Beloved Prophet Mohammad [pbuh]) and then drew even closer. Then a distance measuring only two bow-lengths was left (between Allah Unveiled and His Esteemed Beloved), or even less than that (in extreme nearness). (53:1-9)
Such a Divine meeting did not happen to any lover. That night Allah pleased His Beloved very well.
Love and Obedience of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh)
Allah Almighty completed His religion on His Beloved Prophet (pbuh), preserved every aspect, every action and every word of his life and made it obligatory on every Muslim to follow him. The test of one’s faith is the love for Allah’s Beloved prophet Mohammad. Faith is incomplete without the Divine love for Prophet Mohammad (pbuh).
Anas ibn Malik narrates the Holy Prophet (pbuh) said: “None of you will have complete faith until he loves me more than his parents, children and all mankind.’’ (Bukhari)
The love of Abu Bakr As-Siddiq for Prophet Mohammad (PBUH)
Abu Bakr As-Siddiq had great love for Prophet Mohammad (pbuh). His life is an example for the seekers of Allah. He made clear the ways of Divine love in Faqr (Sufism) with sincerity and purity of intention.
Aisha bint Abi Bakr says:
“My respected father used to be present in the service of the Holy Prophet (pbuh) all day long. When he came home after Isha prayers, it would have been difficult for him to capture those few moments of separation. He remained impatient like a fish without water all night. Those times of separation and isolation would make him sigh like something has burned. That situation persisted on him until he saw the sacred face of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh).”
Grandeur of Abu Bakr
- Abu Bakr loved Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) more than his life, wealth, children and all. This is also the principle of love.
- Abu Bakr is the Imam of this ummah and the foremost in the love of the Prophet (pbuh). His four generations became Companions. The companionship of Abu Bakr is proved by the Holy Quran. The words of ثانی الاثنین (saaniyasnaini– as one of the two) and لصاحبہ (lisaahibihee- his companion) [9:40] were revealed for him.
- Abu Bakr had such a perfect passion for worship because of the love of the Holy Prophet (pbuh) that it affected others as well.
- There are words of Bukhari which mean “He (Abu Bakr) used to offer prayers and recite the Holy Quran, so the women and children of the polytheists would look at him in amazement. Abu Bakr would weep bitterly when he recited the Quran. He would not be able to control his eyes. Abu Bakr always took the lead in love.’’
- Umar ibn al-Khattab says that the Holy Prophet (pbuh) commanded us to spend in the way of Allah. I had a lot of wealth. I thought I would overtake Abu Bakr today. So I spent half of my wealth. The Holy Prophet (pbuh) asked, “What did you leave for the family?” I replied, “Equal to this (means half of my total wealth).”
Meanwhile, Abu Bakr As-Siddiq also came there with all of his belongings. The Holy Prophet (pbuh) asked the same question, “What did you leave for your family?” Abu Bakr replied, ‘’I have left Allah and His beloved Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) for them.’’
Hearing this, Umar al-Farooq said, “I will not compete with you (Abu Bakr) in anything.”
- Once the Holy Prophet (pbuh) saw Abu Bakr dressed in old and rough clothes. The Prophet (pbuh) said, “O Abu Bakr! You had prosperity once. Now for the religion of Allah you have faced so many difficulties.’’ Abu Bakr replied eagerly, May I spend my whole life in this toil and if I suffer even more, even then, O Beloved! It will be easier for me to bear all this in exchange for your sacred company. “
Request of Burial Besides Prophet Mohammad (pbuh)
Abu Bakr As-Siddiq had bequeathed before his death that he should be taken to the door of the holy shrine of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) and ask for his permission and say, “O Messenger of Allah! This is Abu Bakr As-Siddiq, may we bury him with you?” If he (Prophet pbuh) allows this, bury me there and if he does not permit, then take me to Jannat al-Baqi.
Thus, when he died, the people took his body to the door of the holy shrine of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh). One of them requested in the holy court of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh), ‘’ O Messenger of Allah! He is Abu Bakr and he wants to be buried with the Messenger of Allah and he has instructed us to bury him besides you if you allow. And if you don’t allow it, take him back.’’
Ali ibn Abi Talib narrates, “I saw the opening of door and I heard a narrator saying, join Habib (friend) with Habib (friend). No doubt, Habib (friend) is eager to meet Habib (friend).” (Al-Khasais al-Kubra)
The love of Umar al-Farooq for Prophet Mohammad (PBUH)
Umar al-Farooq had a very truthful and serious personality. His blessed life is also enlightened by the manifestations of the love for Holy Prophet (pbuh). He was with Holy Prophet (pbuh) on every important occasion.
- Abu Ubaidah ibn al-Jarrah said to Umar ibn al-Khattab, “I have seen you wearing a shoe made of oxen’s tanned leather without hair.” He said, “I saw the Messenger of Allah (pbuh) wearing a shoe that did not have hair on it. That is why I also like such a shoe.” (Shamail al-Tirmidhi)
- Umar al-Farooq during his caliphate fixed the allowance of Usama ibn Zayd at three and a half thousand (3500) dinars and that of his son Abdullah ibn Umar at three thousand (3000) dinars. Ibn Umar asked, “Why did you prefer Usama?” They have never been ahead of me in a war. Umar said, “Usama was more beloved to Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) than you and Usama’s father was dearer to Prophet (pbuh) than your father. So, I preferred Prophet’s (pbuh) beloved to my beloved. (al-Tirmidhi, Kitab al-Manaqib Zaid ibn Haritha)
- Once Umar ibn al-Khattab came for Hajj. He performed Tawaf and stood in front of the Black Stone (al-Hajaru al-Aswad) and said, ‘’No doubt you are a stone that can neither benefit nor harm. If I hadn’t seen Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) kissing you, I would never have kissed you. ”
These traditions prove that he loved the Holy Prophet (pbuh) so much that he loved everything related to him.
Old Woman Reciting Verses in Love of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh)
During his caliphate, Umar ibn al-Khattab was patrolling at night once when he heard someone reciting poems from a house. When he approached there, he found an old woman reciting poems in love and separation of the Holy Prophet (pbuh). There were tears in eyes of Umar ibn al-Khattab. He knocked at the door. When the old woman saw Umar, she was astonished and said, “Amir al-Mumineen! How did you come to my door at night?”
He said, “I have brought a request. Recite the same verses you were reciting before.” The old woman recited the verses which have the following meaning:
“Good and pious people are reciting salutations on Prophet Mohammad (pbuh). He (the Prophet pbuh) used to stay up at night and fast at dawn. Death is bound to come. I wish I could be sure that after death I will have the meeting with the beloved (Prophet Mohamamd pbuh).’’
Umar ibn al-Khattab sat on the ground there and cried for a long time. His heart became so sad that he remained ill for many days. (Nasim al-Riyadh)
Wish of Umar ibn al-Khattab to Die in Madina
He wished that he would die in the city (Madina) where his beloved (Prophet Mohammad pbuh) is resting. So, he used to pray, “O Allah! grant me martyrdom in Your way and make me die in the city of Your Messenger (pbuh).” (Bukhari, Book of Virtues of Medina 1890)
The love of the Prophet (pbuh) bestowed a perfect rank to Umer ibn al-Khattab.
جب عشق سکھاتا ہے آدابِ خود آگاہی
کھلتے ہیں غلاموں پہ اسرارِ شہنشاہی
Explanation: When Divine love teaches self-awareness and self-recognition, the mysteries of the empire (Sufism) reveal on the slaves
The love of Uthman ibn Affan for Prophet Mohammad (PBUH)
Uthman ibn Affan had a deep love for the Holy Prophet (pbuh). Only a lover can sacrifice his life and wealth for his beloved. His title is Al-Ghani (generous & bountiful). He was rich but his wealth was only for Allah and His Messenger (pbuh). Whenever there was a need for wealth, he would go ahead and spend in the way of Allah.
- On the occasion of Treaty of Hudaybiyyah, the Holy Prophet (pbuh) sent Uthman ibn Affan as his representative to Mecca. Some of the Companions said, “Uthman is lucky that he will have the opportunity of Tawaf of the Kaaba (House of Allah).” When Uthman returned, the Companions asked, “Did you circumambulate (tawaf) the House of Allah?” Uthman ibn Affan replied, “By Allah! The Quraysh kept insisting me to perform Tawaf. Even if I had stayed there for a year, I would not have performed Tawaf without the Holy Prophet (pbuh).’’
- Once Uthman ibn Affan invited the Holy Prophet (pbuh) to his house for dinner. Abu Bakr As-Siddiq and Umar ibn al-Khattab accompanied Prophet (pbuh). Uthman ibn Affan kept looking at the sacred footsteps of the Holy Prophet (pbuh) all the way. Abu Bakr and Umar noted this and told the Holy Prophet (pbuh). The Holy Prophet (pbuh) enquired about it. Uthman ibn Affan replied, “O Beloved of Allah! Today such a holy being has come to my house that I am overjoyed. I intended that I would free as many slaves in the way of Allah as the Prophet (pbuh) would take steps from his house to my place.” (Jamia ul Mojizat)
The love of Ali ibn Abi Talib for Prophet Mohammad (PBUH)
Ali ibn Abi Talib had been associated with Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) since his boyhood. As soon as Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) announced his prophethood by Allah’s command, Ali ibn Abi Talib was the first among boys to embrace Islam. At a young age, a person has a lot of fear and dread, but love makes a person indifferent to the consequences. Therefore, Ali did not hesitate to accept Islam.
- When Holy Prophet (pbuh) intended to migrate to Medina, he had the trusts of the people. Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) chose Ali ibn Abi Talib and said to him, “Ali, lie down on my bed and come to Medina in the morning after handing over the trusts to the people.” Ali ibn Abi Talib set a great unparalleled example of bravery and valour. He agreed to lay down on the bed of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) without any fear and risked his life to fulfill the orders of the Holy Prophet (pbuh).
- Sultan ul Ashiqeen Sultan Mohammad Najib ur Rehman says in his book ’Khulfa e Rashieen’ (Rashidun Caliphate):
‘’Love is not just the verbal claim. Love is that state of mind in which a person is willing to sacrifice his body, soul and wealth for his beloved. He becomes captive to the actions of his beloved. He follows the footsteps of his beloved and does not deviate from them. His heart is filled with the benevolence of the beloved. The Companions had such a love for the Messenger of Allah (pbuh). Ali ibn Abi Talib was devoted to the love of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh). He had blessings of companionship of Prophat Mohammad (pbuh) since his childhood.’’
Why doesn’t the flame of love ignite in proximity of the beauty of the universe (Prophet Mohammad pbuh)! The flame of love ignited and he (Ali ibn Abi Talib) became engrossed in the love of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) from the depths of his soul. The colour of Divine love was so deep that the units of time could not diminish it. But the passion of love increased with each passing day.
Sultan ul Ashiqeen Sultan Mohammad Najib ur Rehman
Divine vision is obtained through Divine love
Gnosis (marifa) of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) is necessary for gaining gnosis of Allah. Gnosis of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) is obtained through love. Therefore, the Companions, the Perfect Fakirs and the Sufi Saints have emphasised on love of Prophet Mohammad Mustafa (pbuh). Allah Almighty liked the love of the Companions so much that He commanded everyone to believe as the Companions have believed.
Perfect Fakirs teach Divine Love
Every Fakir became a model of love for the Prophet (pbuh) in his time in his own way. Their actions and words continued to teach the love of the Prophet (pbuh). There is no doubt that all the Perfect Fakirs are annihilated (fana) in the love of the Prophet (pbuh). This emphasises the need and importance of Perfect Spiritual Guide in every era. Since the Perfect Fakirs are annihilated in Prophet Mohammad (pbuh), they also educate and train the seekers of Allah according to the way of the Holy Prophet (pbuh).
Sultan ul Ashiqeen is the present Perfect Spiritual Guide
My spiritual mentor & guide Sultan ul Ashiqeen Sultan Mohammad Najib ur Rehman is the present spiritual leader (Imam) and perfect spiritual guide of Sarwari Qadri order in the present era. His whole life is reflection of love of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh). He also wrote a book called “The Mohammadan Reality” (available in English & Urdu). The following quatrain of Sultan ul Ashiqeen shows his love and affection for the Holy Prophet (pbuh):
جنت سے اعلیٰ اور ہر لمحہ انوار کی برسات ہے حضورؐ کی قبرِ انور پر
رحمت کا نزول اور ملائکہ کا درود و سلام ہے حضورؐ کی قبرِ انور پر
نجیبؔ جیسا عاصی و خطا کار نہیں ہے حضور ؐ اس زمانے میں
بس ہے یہ التجا کہ رکھوں سر قدموں میں اور جاں نکلے حضورؐ کی قبرِ انور پر
نجیبؔ جیسا عاصی و خطا کار نہیں ہے حضور ؐ اس زمانے میں
بس ہے یہ التجا کہ رکھوں سر قدموں میں اور جاں نکلے حضورؐ کی قبرِ انور پر
Explanation: ‘’The theophanies of Divine light shower like rain on the sacred shrine of Holy Prophet (pbuh) which are more supreme than heaven. The mercy and blessings continuously reveal on the sacred grave of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) where angels recite salutations. All that is required is that I keep my feet on the ground and die on the grave of the Holy Prophet (pbuh).’’
For attaining true love of Prophet Mohammad Mustafa (pbuh), it is necessary to adopt company of a perfect spiritual guide. The love of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) does not bloom in the souls nor does the seeker of Allah attain Divine vision without perfect spiritual guide. Sultan ul Ashiqeen Sultan Mohammad Najib ur Rehman is the present perfect spiritual guide and the Universal Divine Man. It is an open invitation for all the seekers of Allah to join the sacred company of Sultan ul Ashiqeen and enlighten their souls with Divine love.
- Sufism-The Soul of Islam: https://www.sultan-ul-faqr-publications.com/shop/sufism-the-soul-of-islam/
- The Mohammadan Reality: https://www.sultan-ul-faqr-publications.com/shop/the-mohammadan-reality/