Sufism

Idea of virgins (hourises) in Islam as a reward in the paradise…

islamic-paradise
Average people think that muslims are rewarded in heaven with virgins (houris) for sexual gratification, etc. I just watched yesterday on youtube a video about that. There is such misunderstanding of holy scriptures in this world.. I’m not expert in islamic spirituality or mysticism, neither in Koran, but I’ve searched about this subject in google to find the answer, what is the spiritual (mystical) meaning of these virgins, because I believe that Koran doesn’t speak about anything material, anything in time and space, but about spiritual realities (higher worlds), about spiritual consciousness, etc. This is always the main thing in holy scriptures. And it doesn’t matter if this is Koran, Vedas or Torah, there is always a hidden message behind the simple text (for example in Judaism, Torah has 4 levels of understanding, pshat, remez, drash and sod). And this message is not something far away from us, but it’s hidden inside us, in our very soul. So I found one quote that is very interesting, because it speaks about this subject from sufi perspective. I think that everyone should have proper relation to the religion of Islam, and know that there is always inner meaning and our attention should be directed toward it.

Baha Walad constantly tells us that every sweet and desirable thing in both worlds rises up from the experience of God’s presence, though people are confused by the multiplicity of the names and think that the things are the realities. He questions the well-known proposition that paradise is the prison of the Sufi, who desires only God himself.

I was describing the houris and talking about the gardens and the paradises. A shaykh from among the Folk of Gnosis said, “Those who are busy with these things in this world will be busy with them in that world too. When will they go back to God? When will they see God?”
I answered, “It is proper that the ‘houris, palaces, gardens, fountains, and ginger’ [mentioned in the Koran] consist of the states of seeing God. Each time you see, you find a different taste. So, look upon the meanings — how God constantly keeps you in the palm of His hand and His breast. Belong to your Lord and be His companion! Be a stranger to other things and other states. Keep your gaze upon your Sovereign. Whatever you want, ask it from Him. Rub yourself against Him. Mix with Him like milk and honey. Then you will find all the houris, palaces, and sweetnesses of paradise in ready coin. You will find God. Your felicity is for this door to be opened to you — for you to know that He is with you wherever you are. For Baha Walad, as for Rumi, the vision of God in all creation takes place in infinite variety and never-ending joy.

— Sufism – A beginner’s guide by William Chittick

There is also a talk about 72 virgins in paradise.. But from the mystical perspective, for example in kabbalah the number 72 is related with the 72 names of God. Virgins are probably kelim (spiritual vessels) through which higher light of God can be perceived, because light is always perceived inside the vessel (kli), otherwise it can’t be known. And aspect of sexual union with these virgins mentioned in many sources  is really about spiritual union or coupling (zivug), between female aspect of God consciousness (vessel) and male (light). The places like Jerusalem, Gan Eden (higher and lower), Paradise, etc. really talk about different states of consciousness. This is obvious for the spiritual seeker, but worldy people will always see what they want to see.

Five stations mentioned earlier are probably related to the five levels of soul or five lights: nefesh, ruach, neshama, chayah, yechida. As I know there is similar concept in sufism (islamic mysticism), and they call it, if I remember correctly: ‘hearing’, ‘smelling’, ‘touching’, ‘seeing’ and ‘tasting’ as a levels of closeness to God.
I’m not going further with this subject, but I wanted only to give some hints what it may be about. This is my intuitive direction and interpretation with such things from the perspective of kabbalah. Because every tradition talks about one reality and there are similar concepts everywhere. At least I can have respect for other spiritual traditions and see inside them true wisdom, instead of perversions or political matters.

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Sufism

The Mission of Masters

All Prophets are bringing streams of love, but mostly people are running away from them. It is the same story today: that people are running away from Masters, running away from lovestreams. They are running after miserable lives. Everything around you can give you a temporary love, but it will end quickly and leave you like dry wood.

So the mission of all holy people, of all Masters of sufi heavenly ways, is to give lovestreams to anyone who asks for it.

If a person eats something salty, he will want to drink water. He will be a lover of water. If someone lives in a desert, he will ask for water to drink. If he goes to sleep, he will dream about water. He will run from one spring to the next to drink.

Heart shaped tree during fall

If we feel Divine Love within ourselves, we will reach the stream of love and He will make you drink from His Divine Presence. Your life will be the sweetest life. Nothing from the miseries of people will touch you or take away the enjoyment and pleasure in which you will be. Nothing will take you away from your sweet world. This is a bitter world. Only the love of heavens: eternal life and love will give you a sweet private world without any partner, a world full of enjoyment, a beautiful world in which nothing can harm you.

Mawlana Shaykh Nazim

Sufism

Sweetness of Love p.2

You may be fed up when you eat a bottle of honey.

You will say, “I’m fed up with honey.”

If I say to you, “Eat one more bottle!”, you might be able to eat it.

But if I say “Eat a third one!”, it will be tasteless.

That is not the kind of love that we are asking for, the kind of which when you taste it a second or a third time its taste will decrease. We are asking for a love which when you drink from its stream you will ask for more and more and more. That makes your life sweet.

A holy man said to the Sultan of Holiness:

“I drank a cup of Divine Love and I lost myself. Nothing else has a taste for me anymore. I’m drunk with the taste of love for God and the taste is never ending in me.”

So the Sultan of Holiness, Abu Yazid al Bistami, The King of Saints, heard this and said,

“I’m also drinking, but I’m never getting enough. I’m asking for more and more and more… I’m never satisfied and I’m in endless sweetness and refreshness of the lovestreams. It gives me more refreshment and my body is getting younger and more fresh and more alive. I’m not getting older, but younger. I’m not approaching death, I refuse to die. My body does not acept death. death is escaping from me. Death runas after pepole who have not tasted the reallove the Lord Almighty. We, who have tasted and reached the lovestreams, never die.”

Mawlana Sheikh Nazim

Sufism

Sweetness of Love

What is the way to make the life of mankind sweet?

Sweetness comes from love. The more love you use in your life, the sweeter it will be. If you don’t use it, your life will be tough and rough. Tough means tasteless and difficult. It will be like wood and have no taste. Someone who never tastes love is like dried wood.

When love comes to natursun-flower-238850_960_720e, nature turns green and gets its colors. Love goes through flowers, it goes through fruits. When love reaches them in springtime, they start to laugh. So when they take love, they give love. That is why mankind runs to the greeneries of nature, to look and to smell it. Nature gives mankind love and mankind gives nature love. They take this love from their Creator. He gives His Divine Love to nature and nature gives it to you and you love to get it.

You are the most important creature. You must respect Divine Love more than any other creature. You must give love to your surroundings. Everything around you is asking for your love. Mankind is the most important representative of Heavenly Love. You must be fountains of love, or springs of love, or tops of love, or rivers of love, or seas of love, or oceans of love.

Can a person be an ocean of love? Why not?

Mawlana Sheikh Nazim