The Language of the Future
by Murshid F.A. Ali ElSenossi
(Qawl). The first connection between mankind and Allah was His Speech (qawl) and our listening to It. It is this very connection which gives the spiritual concert (sama') its immense spiritual power. The one who is worthy of the sama' is the one who 'finds' Allah within the sama'. When the singer sings it is Allah's Speech which the hearer hears. And 'None hears Allah but Allah'. The Speech (qawl) and the Hearing (sam') are Allah's. The existent things come into existence within the Breath of the All Merciful as a result of Allah's Speech (qawl), which is the Divine Command "Be!".
(Nafas ar-Rahman). The Breath of the All Merciful. This exceedingly beautiful term indicates the evanescent nature of existence in its state of constant change and renewal. It is the Supreme Isthmus and the very substance of the universe is the Breath of the All Merciful. In their state of non-existence the entities are contracted and distressed). This Divine Breath brings relief to them by giving them their existence. Allah breathes out, and through His All Merciful Breath He speaks. We, the creation, are His Words. We are the forms and He is the meaning.
(Wajd). These are the states which come upon the heart unexpectedly. They annihilate it from witnessing itself and others. Ecstasy is the descent of immense spiritual energy upon the slave. It overwhelms the senses, causing extreme physical reactions. Ecstasy is true when body, mind and heart are overcome by this descent. Wajd may manifest as intense joy, when Allah's Beauty dominates, or as intense grief, when His Majesty dominates. It is during the spiritual concert that the lover may experience ecstasy and more ecstasy. Ecstasy is a gift of Allah's Grace upon His lover. Without these gifts of wajd the lover would be unable to bear the intensity of longing and love contained within his heart.
(Harf). As a letter of the alphabet, harf symbolises the language or expressions with which the Real One addresses His slave. For language to be used there must be two, a duality. There must be the Lord (Rabb) and His slave (Al Abd). The Great Silence is beyond such duality - it is within the Essence Itself.
(Sama'). The spiritual concert or 'audition' or 'listening'. This term refers specifically to the Sufi gatherings where music and song are employed as a means of opening the heart to inrushes of knowledge and awareness. During the spritual concert, the listener may experience ecstasy and find Allah, The Real within that ecstasy. However, before true ecstasy can be experienced the listener must be spiritually mature, having been prepared through discipline and perpetual Remembrance of Allah. Without this initial contraction of spiritual endeavour the expansion of ecstasy will not be real. The Spiritual Concert is not suitable for the novice. True Sama' is a bird which flies from Allah to Allah. Allah is the singer and Allah is the hearer. At this Divine Feast the singer and the hearer become One.
(Barakah) is a subtle spiritual energy which flows through everything, but is strongest within the human. The more purified the human becomes, the greater the flow of barakah. Overpowering barakah can be experienced in sacred places, in sacred art and in sanctified people, all of which are theophanies, revealing and manifesting the Divinity - here on earth.
(Qawwal). During the 'spiritual concert' (sama') the qawwal may be the means through which the hearer finds Allah in ecstasy. When this occurs it is true sama' because sama' is a bird which flies from Allah to Allah - Allah is the singer and Allah is the hearer. The barakah surrounding and emanating from the qawwal and his musicians is extremely potent. Its effect upon an audience can be profound even when the members of that audience are ignorant of, and oblivious to, the reality within the singer and the music. For the one who has been prepared and purified, through spiritual struggle and the Remembrance of Allah, the speech of the qawwal can send his heart soaring towards the spiritual realm, where a thousand subtleties and delicacies are opened to him.
(Qawwali). A Sufi song and music. Through the rhythms of qawwali the listener may be opened to inrushes of knowledge and awareness through which he reaches ecstasy. If he 'finds' Allah within this ecstasy then he has experienced the true 'spiritual concert'.