I cannot endure one moment without You

My Beloved,
By Your leave and unceasing attention
my  heart continues to beat.
I cannot endure one moment without You.
You are my hope, my saviour.
There is only You to turn to.
How exalted are You, how infinite and
far-reaching Your glory.
I love You with all my heart.
How rich is Your beauty, how heavy
and all-encompassing Your mercy.
Words cannot describe Your majesty.

I believe in You, in Your power, wisdom,
fierce and gentle love.
You sustain me and I’m grateful.
My Lord, only You can heal my wounds
and grant me the safety and connection
I so desperately seek.
I turn to You with all my heart.
Please save me from my despair and depression.
Let me know love and belonging.
If you do not help me, love me and forgive me
I will certainly be among the lost.
Help me to bloom and thrive, dear God. Please
help me to be happy & grateful and to do
good in the world.

Amīn.

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Another letter to the Beloved

My dear Beloved,

Thank You for the many, many blessings you have given me.
I know now that your religion is love, peace, compassion, understanding, presence.
I love You. I have always loved You and I will always love You. My heart beats because of You. I am Yours completely. I am known by You.
Please remain close to me always and let me be a blessing for others, treating them with presence, love, compassion and understanding. Please help me to remember that I am Yours and that all will be well.
Alhamdulillah. Alhamdulillah. Alhamdulillah.
Thank You for my radiant health.
Thank You for the people who love me.
Thank You for the food and water I have in abundance.
Please bless the world and let no creature go hungry, whether from lack of food or lack of warmth, love and kinship.
Let every creature be nourished and fulfilled.
Amen.

it's enough

Gentle inspiration as the cloak of night descends

I don’t mean to sound preachy here or to make any definitive statements about God or whether you should believe He exists or not. I was writing in my journal and these words just kind of flowed through me, without much effort from my part. This is my personal experience and what I believe. 

God is infinitely merciful, alhamdulillah.
I felt His presence today as I was working on my paper and I understood that He was gently guiding me towards the light, towards truth. I also felt that it was a very intimate matter, between Him and me, and that it was nobody else’s business what I did or didn’t do.

Nothing can replace real faith, real certainty in the existence and mercy of God.
No law or opinion or friend or video. It’s there or it isn’t, and God is infinitely
patient, except with the unjust. There is retribution when you intentionally set out
to hurt or destroy, but again, no more than is just, for God knows you by heart
and knows everything you’re struggling with. He knows what you need to grow and to break through the cycle of darkness and fear. He is with you, even at the end of all things.
He knows you, He is there. Even in your loneliest hour He is there, listening. Not to judge you, but to sustain you like He sustains all life.

The seed blooms into a tree. The same intelligence, love and mercy has a blueprint of beautiful, spectacular, tenacious growth for you. Life is always asserting itself without apologies.
So don’t apologise for choosing to live in abundance over merely existing. Look at nature, it was meant to be this way. Winter turns into spring and all the hidden seeds start blossoming. And when it’s time to let go, you will land gently on a patch of leaves and be reborn in a different form. But He remains. Your love for Him remains and you will know yourself exactly as you are: infinite.

You give sight, so let me see

I know nothing, I understand nothing
I am unaware of myself.
I am in love, but with whom I do not know.
My heart is at the same time both full and empty of love.
– Attar

During my writing, I realised that my outpouring was a sort of meditation on sūra al-Fātiḥa, the first chapter of the Qurʾān. For those who are interested, I will include the text of this chapter at the end. It feels amazing and sacred to me how I’m starting to process the Qurʾān from within, separate from any dogma which can grow so stale and removed from daily life. Islam was very important to me for a few years and although I don’t think I can ever go back to how I was then, that tradition continues to whisper to my core. I continue to take an active interest in Sufism, the mystical tradition of Islam to which that magical poet Rumi belonged. I do not know where life will take me, but I want to surrender to the Source of Love and His/Her infinite mercy.

My Beloved,
How far away from me you seem.
My heart is hurting from not knowing
you near me, from the absolute silence
during the night, pressing upon me
and from the mindless chatter of a world in
overdrive, during the day.

I want to know You, but I know You
are shy. You do not appear where you are
not welcome, where lips don’t mutter
Your name. So many names you have and
even then we forget! Pray, make me wakeful
to Your splendid love and do not let me
be amongst those who turn You away, blind
to their abundant and wonderous blessings
and cursing at what their hands have made.

Let me be amongst those who recognise You wherever
You appear, whether by a gentle, imperceptible touch
or the fierce storm that cleans out all the dirt and illusions
of people gone astray.
O gentle one, You who know me better than
I know myself. Fully, without the blind spots
that I have. You give sight, so let me see.

My Beloved, I do not exist without You
and the whole of my existence longs for You.
Every breath sings Your praise, O Sustainer of Life.
Please come near me, O shy one, and open my
eyes to all the idols I bow to instead of You.


Al-Fātiḥa (The Opening)
First chapter of the Qurʾān

In the name of God, Merciful to all, Compassionate to each!
Praise be to God, Lord of the Worlds:
Merciful to all,
Compassionate to each!
Lord of the Day of Judgement.
It is You we worship, and upon You we call for help.
Guide us to the straigth path,
The path of those upon whom Your grace abounds,
Not those upon whom anger falls,
Nor those who are lost.

Translation by Tarif Khalidi

I have come to lose myself completely

The only sound I have ever found truly sacred
is the Silence and all the delicious richness underneath. 
When I sit back and allow my breath to deepen
until I’m firmly grounded in Nature’s embrace
I feel like I am infinite, that inside my small body,
vulnerable, aging, transient
a groundless whirlwind of colour, warmth, sadness and laughter
makes love to my heart
until I weep from the intensity.

Most of all, when I linger there,
When that precious whirwind is tired of its play
I feel Your presence,
patient, smiling, loving
but holding back out of fear of being intrusive.
You are shy, my Beloved, but I have come
to sit with You once more.
I have come to lose myself completely
in Your love. 

An overdue letter to the Beloved

My dear Beloved,

We have been distant lately, You and I.
Or should I say, I have been distant from You,
drawing walls and veils between us,
for You are always there, 
present, ready, patient, loving
like a mother watching her child play
with toys she’ll forget about tomorrow.

Oh, how people talk about You!
Making others blind to reality, to your Love,
to your gentle caress, subtle as a touch of wind. 
I fell for it, I withdrew, believing I did not need You.
But I am here now, ready to remember once more. 
I smile because You knew
and You waited for me right at this spot in time
Nothing but Your Love remains, my gentle friend.

 

A letter to the sky, the earth, the sea

 

My dear Beloved,

I have not written in a while,
yet my heart cannot exist
without You.

I am so grateful for all my blessings
yet sometimes I forget
the miracles Your love brings.
My eyes look, but do not see.
But when I contemplate the beautiful sunset,
I remember what You are capable of.

I do not understand religion,
or why people wish to claim You
for you move through us all.
You cannot be limited to one gender,
or one form. You are Everything
and Everything is You.
I do not understand atheism
or why people wish to deny You,
for I feel you so clearly,
your gentle touch.
You whisper to me
and my heart responds,
Your limitless beauty
bringing me to my knees.

My Beloved,
Forever I will long for your embrace.
Forever I will see Your presence
In all living things.
And forever I will seek you,
for when I find Your Divine Silence,
I find Home.

A New Beginning

My dear Beloved,
Thank you so much for the love I can feel in my heart
when I close my eyes.
The smile on my face, for no other reason than
because I am.
It wasn’t always like this.
But 2012 has something magical,
an energy that’s taking over my life
and making me reach for more
than I ever thought possible.
My heart is melting in Your love,
and I know that You are here,
holding me tenderly
like a newborn infant.
Men will continue to debate
and fight over You,
but it’s not my struggle anymore.
While they are yelling at one another,
pointing at their books,
I’ll be right here in my room,
humming a forgotten melody
my heart beating
on the rhythm of Your love.

Trusting a Simple Heart

My dear Beloved,

I’m sure people ask You this often,
but please tell me what to do.
Sometimes I get so unsure.
The world keeps swirling round and round,
dragging me along with it.
At least, that’s what it feels like lately.
Maybe it’s just a dark cloud hanging over my head.
But I feel so dry and used up inside. 

Should I believe what people say about You?
They seem to have so much authority.
Who am I, with my simple heart?
Is it true what they say
and will Hell finally take me?
Is it even a real dwelling,
when You are everywhere?
Maybe it’s that little place we crawl in,
when we try to keep You away,
by cursing, shouting, fighting,
and shutting others out?

My dear Beloved,
Please make me resilient.
Please give me the faith to trust my own judgement.
I believe in You, bow to You, love You
and that will never change.