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

laylat al-mi'raj
Night of the Ascension

(Laylat al Mi'raj). The Holy Prophet Muhammad (May the Salutations of Allah be upon him and Peace), the slave of Allah ('Abdullah), was 'taken' to the Divine Presence on this 'night'. The word 'night' indicates that moment which is outside of time when Muhammad al Mustapha was blindfolded to everything that is other-than-Allah. In this timeless moment he was in a state of utter Unity . He had realized the Unity of Time, Unity of Place and Unity of Essence. In this state of inner unity he was 'taken' to the Divine Presence. He did not 'go' of his own accord, but was 'chosen' to be 'taken' on this 'night'. The Holy Prophet is the Beautiful Model and his Ascension is the ascension par excellence. By following in his footsteps the yearning lovers and devoted followers and bereft slaves hope to follow him to the Divine Presence. The chosen one (al Mustapha) is the Slave and he is also the Beloved of Allah. No one meets Allah by being a lover, only by being the Beloved. The Night of Ascension, the Night when man ascends to the Divine Presence, corresponds to the Night of Power when the Spirit descends to man.

See also: Annihilation in the Messenger Ascension Ascension of Decomposition Gabriel Intellect Lote Tree of the Uttermost Boundary Muhammad Mustapha Night Journey Night Journey of the Holy Prophet Night of Power Unity Unity of Time
(Fana fi Rasul). Annihilation in the Messenger, the Holy Prophet Muhammad (May the Salutations of Allah be upon him and Peace). 'No one will meet Allah before meeting the Prophet'. After annihilation into the Self of the Murshid, the seeker journeys, through the Infinite Grace of Allah, to the next annihilation, which is Fana fi Rasul - annihilation in the Messenger. At this point the seeker is pervaded by an overwhelming love for the Holy Prophet Muhammad. This is a love which is greater than anything he has yet experienced. The Holy Prophet becomes dearer to him than life itself.
(Jibreel) The Archangel Gabriel (Peace be upon him), through whom the Final Revelation, The Qur'an, descended into the heart of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (May the Salutations of Allah be upon him and Peace). His station is the borderland between The Angelic Realm and World of Dominion. Due to the fixed stations which the angels occupy, Jibreel could travel no further than the 'Lote Tree of the Uttermost Boundary' (Sidrat al Muntaha), through fear of being burned up.
('Aql). The intellect or the faculty of reason. The word 'aql derives from 'iqal which means fetter. The intellect fetters man and it also puts its hooks into him, preventing him from making the final stages of the ascent. On the ascension to Allah (mi'raj) there is a point which is indicated by the term 'The Lote tree of the Uttermost Boundary'. It marks the 'place' where reason (the fetter) must be left behind. From this point onwards the traveller journeys with passionate love, yearning and bewilderment. On the Ascension of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (May the Salutations of Allah be upon him and Peace) it was at the Lote tree of the Uttermost Boundary that his companion, the Archangel Gabriel (Peace be upon him) stopped through fear of being annihilated. This station of fear is the highest point to which the intellect can attain.
(Al Sidrat al Muntaha). This tree marks the boundary of the intellect. It is located at the extreme verge of the created universe. Beyond it is nothing but the Pure Selfhood.
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.
(Isra). This is first stage of the Spiritual Journey where the traveller (salik) travels in the universe itself, gaining knowledge from everything he encounters. Only after this journey has been completed can the traveller begin his ascent (mi'raj) to the Divine Presence. 'Isra is synonymous with the journey in the universe).
(Laylat al Qadr). The Night of Power occurs during one of the last odd numbered nights of the Month of Ramadan. It was on this night that the archangel Garbirel made his initial appearance to the Holy Prophet Muhammad (May the Salutations of Allah be upon him and Peace). With the first word of Revelation, "'Iqra!" ("Read!"), The Holy Qur'an descended into the Prophet's heart. This descent of Allah into the world corresponds to man's ascending towards Allah in the Night of the Ascension.
(Wahdat-i-zamaniyyah). The slave returns to the 'timeless' Time. This is the beginingless and endless moment in which he is 'no thing' ('la shay'). Only Allah IS. The slave is merely an entity through which Allah Almighty becomes manifest. The slave is at the bidding of his Lord. Before the perfect slave can attain to the Divine Presence he must be in absolute Unity. Without Unity he will never reach Allah because Allah IS Unity. Unity is the combination of three Unities Unity of Essence, Unity of Place and Unity of Time. Unity of Time is the 'timeless' Time which opens into Eternity. Unified Place, Time and Essence are the Divine Silence.

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