The Language of the Future
Sufi Terminology
by Murshid F.A. Ali ElSenossi

Spiritual Poverty

(Faqr). Indigence and spiritual poverty and destitution and neediness. True poverty is to own nothing, not even one's own self. Spiritual Poverty is to 'know' that Allah is the Independent One Who is in need of nothing. Spiritual Poverty is to belong totally and unconditionally to Allah Almighty. This is the station of Union with Allah. Need is an innate condition of human beings - they are always in need of something and as creations of Allah, they are always in need of Him as it says in the Holy Qur'an "O mankind! It is you that have need of Allah. but Allah is the One Free of all wants, worthy of all praise". (35:15). Shaykh Ibn al Husayn al Sulami says that 'true poverty is a secret between Allah and His slave and the truly poor must strive to conceal his condition: therefore, he should be tranquil when in adversity and always refrain from asking people for anything lest he make his state known'.

See also: Bereft Independence Needy People of blame Poor Servitude Slave
(Miskin). Poor and utterly and totally bereft. This miskin is the slave who is at the absolute extremity of need of Allah. He has been stripped of everything and exists purely to manifest the All-Comprehensive Name 'Allah'.
(Ghina). Independence, wealth and in need of nothing. Allah, as the Essence, is perfectly Independent and in need of nothing. He knows Himself and we know nothing of Allah in His Essence. The essential attribute of creation is poverty (faqr) which is the opposite of wealth (ghina). We are dependent upon, and in need of, Allah. Independence from creation belongs to the Essence from Eternity-without-Beginning. Poverty towards Allah in His Independence belongs to the possible thing in its state of non-existence from Eternity-without-Beginning. Due to the 'renewal of creation in each instant' the entities are constantly poor and needy towards Allah in each instant. Within each smallest duration of time in the cosmos the entities are in utter need and poverty. The knower of Allah knows his essential poverty and Allah's Essential Wealth. He is the true faqir.
(Miskin). Needy, poor and utterly and totally bereft. The 'miskin' is the slave who is at the absolute extremity of need of Allah. He has been stripped of everything and exists purely to manifest the All-Comprehensive Name 'Allah'.
(Al Malamatiyya). These are the Perfect Ones. Their exteriors never disclose the reality of their interiors. They are those who know and are not known. Al malamatiyya are Allah's perfect slaves, Allah's perfect lovers, Allah's perfect knowers. They manifest His All-Comprehensive Name 'Allah', without a trace of Lordship. Allah has placed their 'blaming self' over them as a protection against self-conceit or satisfaction. They are the greatest of the Sufis. They are in constant submission and surrender to the Will of Allah. A Murshid (Spiritual Guide) who is one of the malamatiyya is the perfect Murshid and his murids often attain to Manliness. The Master of the cosmos, the Best of Creation, Muhammad al Mustapha (May the Salutations of Allah be upon him and Peace), who is a Malamatiyya, is their Master.
(Al Fuqara). The indigents or the poor. This term refers to the spiritual poverty of travellers on the Sufi Path. These travelling murids who are in need of their Spiritual Guide or Murshid, display their poverty towards him, and in so doing, they make firm his poverty towards Allah.
('Ubada). Servitude and bondage. This is the fulfilment and consummation of slavehood ('ubudiyya) when the slave loses himself in the Will of his Lord. 'Ubada is 'the Nearness of obligatory works' which is one of the four stations of Perfection. To realize 'ubuda is to be gifted with a very high degree of Knowledge of Allah. To know that 'the slave is the slave and the Lord is the Lord' is the supreme form of spiritual courtesy towards Allah. The Holy Prophet Muhammad al Mustapha (May the Salutations of Allah be upon him and Peace) is the Beloved of Allah and His Chosen One. No one is more perfect than him. No one can attain to his Knowledge. Yet Allah says in The Qur'an, "Glory be to Him Who carried His slave by night" (17:1). The slave is in bondage ('ubuda). Bondage is Perfection. Bondage is Knowledge.
('Abd). The slave (and worshipper) is the one who is in a state of total and utter submission to the Will of Allah. After having been annihilated in Allah where all duality vanished and distinctions were erased, he returns to creation with perfect courtesy and with the Truth of Certainty that 'the Lord is the Lord and the slave is the slave'. When 'abd is translated as 'servant' it carries the implication that the servant can leave the service of his Master, if he so desires. However, the 'slave' is in total bondage, being utterly dependent upon his Master. All buying and selling transactions have been terminated. The slave belongs to Allah, completely, perfectly and unconditionally.

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