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Disciplines Of The Sujūd

It is stated in Misbāh ash-Sharī'ah that Imām as-Sādiq ('a) said: “By Allah he will not be a loser, the one who performs the sujūd as it really should be, even if for a single time in his life. No one will be successful if he takes to privacy with his Lord, in a similar position resembling the deceiver of himself, unaware of, and neglecting, what Allah has arranged for the sājidīn (the prostrate worshippers) of immediate intimacy and adjourned comfort.

The one who is good at approaching (Allah) in the sujūd, will never be far from Him, whereas the one who observes not the discipline of, and loses the respect for, the sujūd, can never be near Him by longing for other than Him in his sujūd. So, let yours be the sujūd of a submissive and humble to Allah, the Exalted, knowing that you have been created from the dust which is trodden upon by the creatures, and that He has made you of a nutfah (semen) which is regarded filthy by everybody, and was brought into existence though not existed before.

The concept of the sujūd has been made by Allah, the Exalted, a cause for getting near Him with the heart, the inside and the spirit. So, whoever nears Him turns away from other than Him. Do you not realize that in the external form the position of the sujūd is not complete except by hiding oneself from everything, and turning away from all things visible to the eyes? Similar is the question of the internal position. Whoever his heart is attracted, during the salāt, to other than Allah, the Exalted, he will be near to that which attracted him, and far from the reality of that which Allah wanted him to be in his salāt. Allah, the Exalted, says:

Allah has not made for any man two hearts within him,”1

And the Messenger of Allah (s) said that Allah, the Exalted, told him: 'Whenever I look into the heart of a servant and find in it his love to be sincere in obeying me for my sake and for obtaining my pleasure, I undertake setting him aright and managing his affairs. But whoever is indulged in other than me, he is among those who mock themselves, and his name is registered in the Book of the Losers.”2

This noble hadīth explains both the secrets and the disciplines, and, by contemplation, it opens ways of knowledge in the face of the sālik to Allah, and destroys the obstinacy and the denial of the deniers, and supports and praises the godly men of knowledge and the people of certainty, and attracts attention to the reality of privacy and intimacy with Allah, and forsaking other than Allah, the Exalted.

  • 1. Sūrah al-Ahzāb 33:4.
  • 2. Misbāh ash-Sharī'ah, ch. 16, on “The Sujūd.”

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