Welcome to our website. Today Monday, 16th July 2018

Discourse 23 (10.02.1998)



We’ll start today’s teaching by reading and interpreting the Nutku Sharif of  Askishahirli Sadiq Effendi (k.s.).


The wind of love blew and the sea of God’s essence became wavy    

Names (=Asma) and titles (=Sifat) were manifested through these waves


My taste in my clay, my five elements

My first manifestation are all sheltered by Sufi Path


I let the ship of body sail on the ocean of unity

I annihilated my drop and became an endless ocean


I had fallen into a barzah but the fire of love saved me

I burned my Nafs al- Nimrod and became a rose garden


I passed through  Jacob, the body, and I attained Joseph, the heart,

I learned the secret of the beloved and became the sultan of universe


I was born from Mary, the heart, and obtained a pure body

Then love came and caused chaos in me but then I was annihilated in love


I was unique, I was one in the thousand and one and I worn different bodies

I was seen every hundred thousand, I was the one who goes and stays


I was Light but they called me Sadiq

I am a hidden treasure in this world


We’ll try to interpret these beautiful expressions. In the first line, Sadiq Effendi Aziz (k.s.) mentions ‘ the wind of love ’.


The wind of love blew and the sea of God’s essence became wavy

Names (=Asma) and titles (=Sifat) were manifested through thes waves


Sea itself is motionless. There is a force which makes it active. What is it? The wind. It is the wind of love (= bad-i muhabbat). When the wind of love blows, waves and foam are seen on sea surface. In Sufi terminology sea refers to God. The waves and foam caused by wind are the names and attributes of God. This is also the interpretation of a Hadith Qudsi which is said a lot by Sufi Saints.


I was a Hidden Treasure and I wished to be known.’


Let’s  interpret the words of Sadiq Effendi Aziz (k.s.) from this point of view. When God existed only as essence and all the science and knowledge were hidden in him, he let the wind of love blow. The wind refers to his heart. Here sea is a figurative expression as well. The wind of love caused ecstasy in His heart. When His heart became ecstatic, His words manifested there. Then they came from the heart to the mouth. They were put in patterns. They became letters, syllables, words, sentences, (etc.). and all the patterns together formed language. Then the real essence, the spiritual jewels, was expressed verbally. God lets the wind of love blow to cause them to happen. For this reason love is the main thing.


‘Things can be done either willingly or unwillingly.’


God created world, universe and Man through love. Sadiq Effendi Aziz (k.s.) tells this in his line. ‘The wind of love blew and the sea of God’s essence became wavy’ . As a result of this ecstasy, the Divine Names (=asma) and Attributes (=sifat) were manifested through waves.


If you give different colors , different names and  duties to each of these waves, then the sea surface becomes colorful. World is so.


I let the ship of body sail on the ocean of unity


The ship is the body and sea is the unity of God. I let the ship sail in the ocean of unity. Here ship also refers to Shariat. Likewise the ships being on the sea, the body is on the ocean of soul. When the soul leaves the body, the ship of the body is driven ashore in other words put into a grave. Here he says that he put the ship of the body on the sea of unity.


I annihilated my drop and became an endless ocean


His own existence, his body, is only a drop. He says, ‘ I annihilated it. I poured it into the sea.’  The drop disappeared but it became sea. It was united with sea.


Sufi Saints do so. Sufi Path is so. Hazrat Gaibi has similar words on that subject.


Gaibi, those who don’t annihilate Self become the mureed of it,

Those who don’t accept their inexistence-- don’t come to this gathering


The words of Hazrat Gaibi and Hazrat Niyazi are similar to the words of Sadiq Effendi Aziz (k.s.). The words may be different but their meaning is the same. What is important is to follow Sufi Path and annihilate Self.  In another Nutki Sharif of Hazrat Gaibi, he uses the expression, ‘ Self Annihilation (=nafy-i vucud) ’.


What does ‘ Self Annihilation’ mean? Let’s explain it. Our existence, Nafs (=ego) is only an illusion and we create it. It’s as if one owns something, which doesn’t belong to him. Our existence is the existence of God. Owning it or saying that it is ours is a hidden polytheism (=shirk al-hafi). It is difficult to get rid of it. In one of the gatherings, my master Hodja Mustafa Effendi (k.s.) asked,


‘Do you see this pin, my son ?’


I replied, ‘Yes, my master.’


He said, ‘It is possible to dig a tunnel through the mountain with a pin but there is something which is more difficult than that and it is annihilating the Self ’.


Getting rid of ego is only possible through love and affection. Is the body our own? Does it really belong to us or not? We should at first think about it and search it. Do we own anything or not? When you attain a high degree of perception through the support of Pirs, you will fully realize that what really exists is God.  I am underlining the word ‘ fully ‘. Because this is self annihilation. To emphasize this truth it is better to express the words of Yunus. He says,


If what I call I is the real I
Why aren’t I given to me


If my self is not given to me , if I am not the owner,  if  the body is not my own,  then why do I say ‘I’ continuously?


God is the real owner. He owns everything. There is no other owner than him. He controls the Man and the universe. When one realizes this, he behaves with modesty. He becomes conscious of his poverty. That sort of poverty is the one, which Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) is proud of. In a Hadith he says,


Poverty is my pride


The wayfarer in the Path of God knows this Truth but this is not enough. He should experience this. When Man understands and experiences this, he becomes like a fruit tree in autumn.


I would like to give the following example to tell our subject from a different point of view.


You know the trees in autumn. Their branches are full of fruit such as quinces, pomegranates or bananas. Fruits contain the essence of the tree. Tree exists for the sake of fruit. Fruit is what is desired. It weighs the branches down. Its sufistic interpretation is as follows, ‘ Fruit symbolizes perfection. It represents someone who attains perfection. The wiser the one is, the more humble he becomes. It is like a branch loaded with fruit and therefore bows to the ground. A branch with no fruit raises its head up. This serves to feed one's ego. This is ignorance.’


I let the ship of body sail on the ocean of unity


I freed the ship of the body to the sea of union. Then I annihilated my drop. I realized that the Self which was like a drop did not belong to me. Then I was united with sea. I was united with God.


I had fallen into a barzah but the fire of love saved me


Barzah is a whirlpool, which is difficult to escape. Alam al Barzah. It also refers to different things. It refers to the body or the physical world or the soul’s being imprisoned in the body.


What is mud? It is clay and water mixture. When you mix them, they become mud. In that case, we can say  water was  imprisoned in clay. It became mud.


The water in the mud thinks only one thing. It is how to get rid of the mud. Because water comes from above. However clay is at the bottom. Here water refers to ‘soul’. Clay   is ‘the body’. They mix together. With the mixture of them, a beautiful, a unique body was created. This is Divine Power. Let’s tell the fine lines of a Perfect Man here.


See how beautiful the mighty hand of God created you

He shaped water and clay in different forms


You should look to see how the mighty hand of God created your face and body, how beautiful he shaped you. How did he create this beauty?


He shaped water and clay in different forms 


He mixed water and clay and created different forms, different faces. Let’s return back to our main subject.


The body is the mixture of water and clay. Clay is at the bottom. Water came from above but it was imprisoned in clay. When they mixed, they became mud. The water says, ‘ I should get rid of this mud.’


The water gets rid of the mud through the mercy of God, the intercession of Prophets, the support of Pirs and the inborn talent of the disciple. It returns where it came. It ascends. The earth remains at base. This is journeying back to God (=sayr wa suluk). Water and earth are figurative expressions. Water refers to soul and earth refers to body. They complete each other. They need each other.


‘Neither water nor earth are useful alone. When they come together, life occurs. Because they are male and female.’


Things are also male or female. But earth is a low quality material (=sufli). It is like sediment. It is low (=asfal). It is at the base. The water in other words the soul, which wants to escape from this low place, is sublime. It is fine. It comes down from above.


A man dies but his soul bursts out laughing. The soul of the death person looks very pleased. The saints ask,


‘Why are you so happy? What are you laughing at?’


The man says,


‘My wealth, which I tried to keep safe from thieves, were left behind. When I was alive, I considered them as mine. I guarded my possessions with much care and I was anxious about losing them or their being stolen. Now I understood that they weren’t mine. I guarded them unnecessarily. I am laughing at it.


This is the reality. But God’s favour and inborn talent are needed to realize this. Sadiq Effendi Aziz (k.s.) says, ‘ Love held my hand’ because love is sublime. It is a spiritual substance. It comes from above. Spiritual things are above. He says, ‘ Love helped me. It saved me from the world. Come and see what love has done to me.’

I burned my Nafs al-Nimrod and became a rosegarden


Nafs al-Nimrod refers to one’s pretending to be God.  Was Nimrod the only person who considered him God? People either knowingly or unknowingly pretend to be God. I tried to explain it before. One’s saying ‘ I ’ is the result of his thinking himself apart from God. It is called shirk al-hafi (secret sin) in Islam. The only way of getting rid of this is to burn with the fire of love and to annihilate Nafs, which is like Nimrod. In other words, to attain Divine perfection and Divine knowledge and   to know, find and merge with God.


I passed through Jacob, the body,  and  I  attained  Joseph,  the heart I learned the secret of the beloved and became the sultan of universe


Being a disciple is like being a sultan. Because the disciple learns the secret of the beloved. He renounces the body, which is Jacob (=Yaqup), and meets heart, which is Joseph (=Yusuf). The body becomes Jacob and the soul becomes Joseph. He stops  looking outside and starts to look inside. He is freed from body and becomes aware of the beloved. ‘ I learned the secret of the beloved and became a sultan of universe.’ The real sultanate is the disciplehood. Let’s tell a Sufi story related to our subject.


Once upon a time the sovereign summons one of his devotees to the palace. He says,


‘Take this purse of gold. There is a convent opposite. Go and stay there for a while. Collect some information about what they do. Learn the secret of the convent and report it to me.’


That person goes to the convent. He wants to stay there for a while but one can only stay there three days as a guest. He should become a disciple to stay there longer. Then he becomes a disciple. But his aim is not to be a real disciple. It is to stay there longer and collect more information. Days pass doing dhkir with other disciples. Then love fills his heart.


‘Love is contagious.’


 The word ‘Love ’ (Ashq) was adopted from the Persian. The root of the word is pronounced as ‘Ishq’ in Persian and means ivy. Short time after planting, ivy covers the surface of a building. Likewise ivy, love falls into the heart of the man who is entrusted by the sovereign with the duty of collecting information. His aim was not this but he was enchanted with love.


‘Love is a strong magnet. It is a philosopher’s stone (=iqsir al-azam).’


That person stays seven years in the convent and becomes a perfect disciple. He becomes a Perfect Man. But he has promised the sovereign to report the secret of the convent. He should fulfill his promise. So he comes into the presence of sovereign seven years later. He says,


‘My sultan, you gave me a purse of gold and sent me to the opposite convent. You asked me to report what was happening there. I fulfilled my duty and brought the report.’ The sovereign says,


 ‘Then give me the report.’     


He says, ‘My sultan, you will take it later. It is under my tonque. I’d like to say you something before this.’


The sovereign asks, ‘What would you like to say?’


He says, ‘Don’t be proud of your being a sovereign which won’t last long in this world of deception, curiosity and envy. If you want to be a real sovereign, then go to the convent and be a disciple. They are the real sultans. Their sultanate is everlasting. It is not something, which is inherited from father to son for a limited period of time. The disciples in the convent are all sultans. Please go there and become a disciple.’


It’s certain that the sovereign won’t give ear to his words. He calls the executioner at once. Then the man says,


‘My sultan, I am ready to give up my head. But please don’t think of yourself as a sultan in these beautiful clothes and by looking at the people around you who wish for something. Go to the convent. The real sultans are there. ’


The executioner cut off his holy head. Then they open his mouth and find the piece of paper under his tongue. It says,


‘Server Baba gave up his head but not the secret.’


This is the real sultanate. By saying, ‘I learned the secret of the beloved and became the sultan of universe’, Sadýq Effendi Aziz (k.s.) expresses that the real sultanate is the spiritual sultanate. Yunus has similar words on that subject.


Being disciple is a great favour

It is a shirt without collar and cuff so you can’t wear it


Let’s return back to the lines of Sadiq Effendi Aziz. He tells us Mary. He says, ‘Being born from Mary, the heart.’ Where does everybody seek Mary? Mary is the heart of disciple.


I was born from Mary, the heart, and obtained a pure body

Then love came and caused chaos in me but then I was annihilated in love


Pure body:  The servant has no influence on it.  When love arrives, all the troubles end. He says, ‘...caused chaos in me….’ A voice, a cry was heard inside. Love caused great excitement, chaos, inside him. Then it gave ecstasy and enthusiasm. He became aware of his being united to God through love.  He understood that he was in the atmosphere of Divine Unity. The existence is God’s own existence. Man has no influence on his own existence. Noone could write a petition before coming into the world so no one can write one before leaving the world.  God lets one come and go.


God lets one come and go. La hawla wa la quw'wata illa billah. (=There is no power and no strength save in Allah)


What does it refer to?  There is no power and no strength save in Allah. What does Sadiq Effendi Aziz (k.s.) say then?


I am One. I am in the thousand and one. God is known by thousand and one Different Names. Sadiq Effendi Aziz (k.s.) means this. They are Divine Names (=Asma al-ilahiyya). I wore different dresses. What are these dresses? They are the different forms of existence. Everything has a different form, a different image. God appears in different forms, under different names. The leaves and the flowers also have dresses. Dress refers to form. Formation.


‘The head of snake suits snake which has a long thin tail. The ears of donkey suit donkey. The ears of horse suit horse as well. ’


Everything has that sort of  beauty, symmetry and balance. You cannot say this doesn’t suit that. Wherever you look or whatever you see has perfection. These are forms. Then these forms change in time. They change colour and shape incessantly.


Things are always active and changeable. When a thing elevates to a better form, there is no sign of its previous form left behind. In its new stage its name, its image and its form change. It wears another dress. For example water’s being frozen is it’s wearing another dress or the boiling water’s evaporating is it’s wearing a new dress as well. This is water’s being named differently.


I was seen every hundred thousand, I was the one who goes and stays


Sadiq Effendi Aziz (k.s.) lived in the nineteenth century. The reason why he says every hundred thousand is, in the nineteenth century there was one Perfect Man in every hundred thousand. He expresses this by saying, ‘ I was seen every hundred thousand’.  I was the one who goes and stays. He is the one who goes, who stays and who comes.


I was Light but they called me Sadiq

I am a hidden treasure in this world


He says, ‘ They called me Sadiq but in fact I was light.’  When I was born, my parents gave me this name. At this stage (=maqam) Hazrat Niyazi says similar things.


They caused me to land on earth while flying

They imprisoned me in four elements


They imprisoned me in four elements, which are water, air, earth and fire. They put this light in it.


I was light but they called me Niyazi


He says ‘I was light’. They gave me a different name here and called me Niyazi. Sadiq Effendi Aziz (k.s.) says the same thing. Word is the same. Face is the same. The face of Sadiq and the face of  Niyazi are the same. The face of Mawlana is the same as well. Their words are the same. Because they all belong to God.


‘The same word, the same meaning, the same melody. I am Light.’


I was a hidden treasure in this world. ‘I became a hidden treasure in this atmosphere.’  Man is a hidden treasure (=hazinatu’l asrar).


Let’s see how Hazrat Mawlana defines Man in Masnawi.


Scholars of logic and philosophy define Man as a rational animal, a talking animal who walks on two feet and acts with his free will. This is their definition but Hazrat Mawlana defines differently. He says,


‘Knowing Man so is not knowing Man. Because Man is the gathering place of everything (=kawn al cami), the great universe (=alam al-vasi). In terms of body Man is a microcosm (alem-i sugra) but in terms of spirit he is macrocosm (alem-i kubra). Man is the essence of universe and the essence of all creatures. Man is created in the best make both physically and spiritually. God favours man and he is honoured as the vessel of the Holy Spirit. He is the the major copy of universe and  the khalif of God.’


A learned man should conceive Man as above and should experience that this is so. Man is macrocosm. On this subject Shaykh Galib, the great Sufi of the 18th century, says,


Care your essence cause you are the essence of universe

You are the most exalted of all creations 


We tried to explain the Nutku Sharif of Sadiq Effendi Aziz ( k.s.) a bit. I say ‘a bit’ because the words of saints (=ahlullah ) are like hidden treasure. The more you dig, the more you get. Meaning is hidden in meaning. We cannot say this is its last meaning. They always say kind words.


God gives an example. It is such a kind word (=al-kalima al-tayyiba) that it is delicious like fruit, like date.


The shape of date-palm tree is very beautiful. It is a tall thin tree. It looks like a pencil. It is charming. The dates grow in bunches.  Its branches reach high up into the sky and its roots sinking deep into the earth. The Holy Qur’an tells it so.


The words of Saints (=ahlullah) are likened to date which is most delicious of all fruits. In a Hadith Sharif Prophet Muhammad(pbuh) says,


‘God has holy days which he breathes upon us and gives out his smells of inspiration. Be aware of them and receive these smells of inspiration. Accept them as God’s favour for you and follow them.’


The saints interpret this hadith as follows, ‘ The smells of inspiration refers to the words of prophets and saints.’


The words of Sadiq Effendi Aziz (k.s.), which we tried to interpret, are like these smells of divine inspiration. They will continue forever. When people give ear to these holy words and breathe this holy air, they will then become everlasting. Here smell refers to moral qualities, science and knowledge.


‘Those who receive this smell -who hear these words- attain perfection. They are Perfect Men so the society in which they live is a model society both materially and spiritually, with its politics, science and knowledge, culture and all sorts of art. Because the people in that society breathe these holy air.’


Let’s tell another Nutku Sharif in this stage. Divinely inspired words. A spiritual wind. The words of another Perfect Man whose literary name is Nuri. Let’s listen to his words. Let’s listen what he says? In fact they all say the same thing likewise all rivers’ flowing to sea. Rivers flow differently from each other. But no matter how they flow, whether they rush over the mountains to form waterfalls or flow through plains, they all reach sea. The words of saints are so. They all mean the same thing. Let’s listen how he expresses the Truth.


Those who didn’t drink the wine of love couldn’t see the face of God

Those who didn’t dive into the sea of body couldn’t know the Man


(The shape of )Man is the gathering place of horizons and the souls

The blind can’t see this truth


Look into the face of Man and see the face of God

Those who don’t know Man don’t know the meaning of Qur’an


The light of Ahmad shone over the universe

He experienced nothingness in his heart


All the Saints (=ahlullah) are in great humbleness

Nuri’s handful of clay doesn’t make your sea dirty


Let’s try to interpret these divinely inspired words.


Those who didn’t drink the wine of love couldn’t see the face of God

Those who didn’t dive into the sea of body couldn’t know the Man


Those who don’t drink from the goblet of love, those who don’t drink wine of love, can’t see God. Those who don’t dive into the sea of body don’t know Man. In a Hadith Qudsi Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) says,


He who knows himself knows his Lord


Those who dive deep into their selves can only be aware of   what  Man is. The form of  Man is the gathering place of horizons and self (=afaq and anfus).


Afaq means horizons and anfus means self. Whatever exists in horizons and self are all the verses of God.


‘And in the earth there are signs for those who are sure, And in your own souls (too); will you not then see? ’ (The Scatterers, Verses 20,21)


God says this in the Holy Quran. Everything in the horizons and souls are gathered in the form of Man.


The blind can’t see this truth


It is impossible for those whose eyes are closed to truth to understand this secret. In the Holy Qur’an God says the following words about the blind people,


‘Allah has set a seal upon their hearts and upon their hearing and there is a covering over their eyes, and there is a great punishment for them’(The Cow, Verse 7)


Those who don’t see this secret, who are unwise, can’t understand this. If eye is only a part of the body with which we see, the tortoise has eyes as well. We should look to see otherwise we are not called Man.  Man should look   wisely and say wise words.


Look into the face of Man and see the face of God


God, the absolute owner, saw himself in the face of Muhammad. God saw him in the mirror. Who was the mirror? Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).


God saw his reflection in the mirror of Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh). In other words God created a mirror to see himself and he called this mirror Muhammad Mustafa (pbuh). God’s will was so. None can see himself without mirror. Because eyes see opposite. One needs mirror to see himself.  Here the mirror refers to a heavenly mirror. It reflects the spiritual world. In another Qudsi Hadith God says,


‘O Muhammad! I am fully reflected in you.’


At this stage Man is called Hazratu’l insan (=the highest Being). Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh) reflected God. God is reflected in that mirror. In which form did Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh) see God in his miraculous journey? Hodjas know this quite well. He saw him as ‘shabb al amrad’.


Shabb al-amrad is a 14 or 15-year old-boy who hasn’t grown a moustache or a beard yet.


Those who don’t know Man don’t know the meaning of Qur’an


Those who don’t know Man don’t know the meaning of Qur’an. So it can be said that Qur’an is unexplored. Because Man is unexplored either.


All the Saints (=ahlullah) are in great humbleness


Sufi saints (=ahlullah) are always in great humbleness although they are given great power and authority. Despite their perfection, they look quite ordinary. They don’t care the appearance. They care the heart. Because appearance deceives. These Perfect Men who pass through all the spiritual stages and complete their journey back to God are in great humbleness. They are modest.


Nuri’s handful of clay doesn’t make your sea dirty


The body of Nuri doesn’t dirty your world. He says so because he is in great humbleness.


This is the perfection of Man. This is divine perfection. To sum up, we can say that our way is the Sufi Way. It is the way of sincerity and love. It is the Muhammadan Way so it is the way of adab (=courtesy).


For this reason, the wayfarers of Sufi path are the ones who adopt the adab (=courtesy) of Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh). They are humble people. They trust in God. They are contended. They are obedient. They are the true servants of God. They are brave. They are strong and firm. They are patient. They serve others. They think on the truth deeply, systematically, and in great detail. They always remember God. They feel gratitude. They are considerate. They have self-control. They are well aware of Sufism. They have authority.


They are adorned with all the divine perfections. Those who look with wise eyes can see the reflection of them in their manners and behaviors.  But this is of course not possible for the blind ones. Their perfection is clearly seen in whatever they do whether they talk or be silent, whether they look or walk. The Sufi Master of Sadiq Effendi Aziz (k.s.), Çaltýlý Ismail Hakki Effendi Aziz (k.s.), was always in silence and didn’t talk a lot. His silence is expressed as follows,


The disciples gather round   Çaltýlý Aziz (k.s.). He sits in his corner. They look at his face. Although they just do this, their hearts are filled with joy, they sigh and cry a lot. One day his wife says,


‘ Your disciples are looking at your face. Why don’t you tell something to them?’


Ismail Hakki Effendi Aziz (k.s.) replies,


‘ Those who can’t learn anything from our silence can’t learn anything from our words.’


They teach a lot when they talk. But they also teach a lot without saying anything.. Their manners reflect their perfection. This is of course for those whose eyes are not closed. They say,


‘These are for those who can see, not for the blind ones.’