This is the celestial name of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (May the Salutations of Allah be upon him and Peace). Ahmad is 'the most praiseworthy of those who praise Allah'. His praise, which is none other than The Qur'an, is the complete and most elevated of all praises. All praises are gathered together in his praise. When he was asked, "Are you the One?" the Holy Prophet answered, "No! I am Ahmad without the M". On his Ascension to the Divine Presence he heard the words, "Stop, Oh Muhammad, your Lord is praising you". Before this stage he was 'the most praiseworthy of those who praise Allah'. Then he became 'the praised one'.
(Nur Muhammadiyya). "Allah took a handful of His Light and said 'Be! Muhammad'". From this pre-existent Light of Muhammad (nur Muhammadiyya) all of the spheres were created. It is the Light of Muhammad that enables the traveller to advance towards the Reality of Muhammad (al haqiqa al Muhammadiyyah). Without the cooling nature of this light the salik would not advance, or if he did advance he would be burned-up. The differentiation between the Light of Muhammad (nur Muhammadiyya) and the Reality of Muhammad (al haqiqat al Muhammadiyyah) is within the degrees of the descent of Being, from the Inward Non-manifestation of the Hidden Treasure to the outward manifestation of the cosmos.
The Holy Prophet Muhammad (May the Salutations of Allah be upon him and Peace) is the Glory of the Universe, the Best of Creation, the Seal of the Prophets and the friend of those who truly love him. He is from the Light of Allah and all of existence is from his light. He is the key to unlock the Mystery of Existence and he is also the treasure of Existence. He is the key to Allah's Mercy and the key to Paradise. Muhammad al Mustapha is the niche and the goal of the wayfaring lover and the burning rapture within his breast. He is the Beloved of Allah. He owns the Banner of Praise and the Station of Glory. Outwardly he is the Perfect Slave and inwardly he is The One. When the Reality of Muhammad has been unveiled to the lover his heart prostrates before the sheer beauty of this most Noble Sanctuary.
The Chosen One. The Holy Prophet Muhammad al Mustapha (May the Salutations of Allah be upon him and Peace) is the Chosen One of Allah. From Pre-Eternity he was chosen to be the one through whom the Hidden Treasure would become manifest. From Pre-Eternity he was chosen to be the Beloved of Allah. From Pre-Eternity he was chosen to be the Glory of the Universe and the Best of Creation and the Perfect Man. In being a Prophet when Adam was still between water and clay he was chosen to have Firstness. In being the Seal of the Prophets, the one to deliver the perfected religion to humanity, he was chosen to have Lastness. Allah chose to give him two of His Own Most Beautiful Names - The All-Clement (ar-Rauf) and The All-Compassionate (ar-Rahim). In following in the footsteps of Muhammad al Mustapha, in clinging to him and loving him more than life itself, the slaves of Allah are brought near and drink the wine of Divine Love.
(Al Haqiqat al Muhammadiyya). This is 'The Reality of realities'. It is the first descent of Being from the Beyond of the Beyond. It is the Station of True Love and the stage of 'Or Nearer'. Just as man is unable to look directly into the physical sun because its brilliance would burn away his sight, so too is he unable to look at the Divine Sun because Its Pure Radiance would burn away his very existence. And just as the sun can only be viewed through a thin covering of cloud, so too the Divine Sun can only be seen through the Greatest Veil which is the Reality of Muhammad. The heart which has been infused with knowledge of The Reality of Muhammad soars to Allah Almighty. It takes the lover on the wings of overwhelming love ('Ishq) and longing (Shawq) to the Divine Presence.
When Prophet Noah saw the condition of the flood and he was afraid of the sinking of the ark, he used the intercession of Allah for the safety of the Ark (al Wasila). Allah told him to write on the mast the mixing of the Name of Allah and Muhammad (Alif Mim Lam)
(Salawat). Blessings and benedictions and salutations. Salawat refer most particularly to the blessings which the Muslim calls down upon the Holy Prophet Muhammad (May the Salutations of Allah be upon him and Peace). "Allah and His angels shower blessings on the Prophet. O ye who believe! Ask blessings on him and salute him with a worthy salutation." (The Qur'an 33:56). The forms of the salawat are numerous, varying from short and concise prayers through to the profoundly mystical litanies of the great Masters of the higher teaching. And, just as the forms are many, so too are the levels of meaning contained within each salawat. These start from merely saying the salawat on the lips, without any awareness of the Holy Prophet, through to the visualizations of his blessed presence, his light, his essence and ultimately his Reality. Through the Grace of Allah the lover-slave-knower will then understand the words of the Holy Prophet Muhammad, 'I am Ahmad without the 'M''. This is a stage of utter bewilderment. The lover knows that Muhammad al Mustapha is the very ecstasy within his breast. He knows that Muhammad al Mustapha is Absolute Beauty and Absolute Perfection. In perceiving this Reality of Muhammad the lover becomes silent. How does he now approach the Beloved of Allah?