The Essence of a Spiritual Gathering and a Habib

National Mosque, City Centre – The Al-Wariseen Trust & Darul Jailani International had successfully organized a Maulidurrasul and Haul al-Syeikh Abdel Qader al-Jailani R.A yesterday. I truly hope that the event and all those involved were Blessed by Allah S.W.T. with barakah, insya’allah.

We were told that more than 20,000 people from all over the country and overseas had attended this blissful occasion. There were also groups from numerous mosques in Johore and Singapore that came over for a one day trip just to be a part of the majlees. My mom and my aunt took the opportunity to tag along with those from Wadi Hassan. I even saw a few familiar faces from JB and IIUM.

However, I have failed to catch a glimpse of those representing any NGOs nor political parties. May it be a failure of my sight but not their presence because without the grasp of faith, perjuangan brings no meaning.

The ambiance of the event transported me back through the sands of time. The scents of ‘attar, the men and women all donned in white, and the glitters of crystal chandeliers in the majestic mosque reminded me of high school days. About forty percent of our schedule were devoted to spiritual activities at the surau.

I remember when me and my friends used to sit in front of the window at the second floor of the surau. We would recite the Quran or dhikr while the same sun sets down witnessing our humble deeds every day. There were always a variety of adhkar to sing along to, taught by Allahyarham Habib Muhsin al-Attas with a calm smile on his face. Subhanallah, may Allah Bless his soul, always.

Prior to isya’ prayers, the maulid session was led by Habib Hassan Mohamed Salim al-Attas from the Singapore Ba’alwi mosque. Someone told me that the habib’s recitation of salawaat gave him the shivers. Alhamdulillah. It signifies that it is a salawaat with rouh.

The essence of a true recitation is that it enraptures one by the heart. The essence of a man of God is that he does not need to utter a word to evoke shame. It is just by his physical presence, we can sense a rush of regret of our sins and we see this ray of hope to improvise ourselves by Allah’s Mercy.

When everybody stood up for the salawaat, I felt how our strong voices became one, reverberating the whole mosque and its vicinity. “This is the secret of building an ummah“, I whispered to myself.

In management and politics, people talk about cultivating esprit de corps or teamwork. Actually the methodology is already taught and practiced in Islam where the concept of congregational prayers and gatherings for dhikr or tazkirah builds ukhuwwah. It strengthens both the human relationship with God and relationship with other human beings (hablumminallah wa hablumminannaas). We do not realise that this practice subconsciously eliminates hasad and imbues love for another being, especially if the spiritual session is Blessed by Allah S.W.T. Wallahu a’lam.

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