Alif Lam Lam Ha
Ibn ʿAṭā Allāh ash-Shādhilī’
In our fall online course we will be contemplating the most comprehensive divine name Allah, letter by letter. You are in for a very special surprise! Many may think an examination of the four Arabic letters that comprise the name Allah will be a fairly abstract, cerebral exercise. Well, you will need to be able to read and contemplate what you read - but this will lead you into mysteries that deepen the recitation of the Unique Name of God immensely. Each of the four letters (alif, lam,lam,ha)is a portal to divine mysteries. Each represents an essential aspect of divinity. When the zakir has realized this and brings that realization into the recitation of the unique name of Divinity, s/he is lifted through and beyond the Qualities into a state of glorification and tawhid (unity consciousness). We will be using Ibn ʿAṭā Allāh ash-Shādhilī’s book "The Pure Intention: On The Knowledge of the Unique Name" as our class text. Doing Zikr will never be the same for you again!
Written lessons will be posted, along with pertinent practice (including an audio tape of the practice), every two weeks. This allows time to read, do the practices, ask questions or make comments - and enter into a written dialogue with other class participants and Himayat. Participants can enter the class whenever it is convenient to do so. They can print out the class material to reflect on after the class ends.
Past Class Reviews:
"Some years ago a tape by Himayat inspired me with a practice that helped me open my heart more. When I met him years later I thanked him and he gave me a more detailed explanation that expanded my heart even more. Because he was so immediately Present and willing to pass on his knowledge so efficiently I decided to take his online class. He has made a deep dive into the teachings of ancient Sufis both known and unknown and unraveled translations into clear English. He finds amazing music and poetry to enhance understanding as well as adds his own commentary to the teachings. The lessons offer the freedom to share with other students around the world by reading each other's written experiences with the very useful and simple practices he is offering and meeting three times on vide-conference. Himayat has a manner of modesty and non-judgement that is true to the mystic ideal and is able to bring a person deeply committed to the work into mystic states."
Murshida Asha Greer, Sufi Ruhaniat International
"It is some years ago now, that I joined Himayat's online community, and I am deeply grateful for this connection. One thing which I really appreciate is the fact that he puts a lot of time and energy and love to condense the teachings in a digestible form and offers written material, where I can go back to certain points again and again, reread important quotes and explanations, make notes etc., which would be impossible with only audio or video teachings. Plus I love his practices, which have an amazing subtlety and variety and are drawn from the ancient Sufi tradition as well as our own lineage. And I feel greatly supported by the discussions with other participants and Himayat in the online forums. It helps to stay connected, to learn from other's experiences and insights, and also their struggles. And I appreciate Himayat's profound answers to our questions and his ability to address the question behind the obvious questions.
The Buddhists speak of three jewels on the path - the teacher, the teachings and the sangha (community of fellow seekers). All three are present in Himayat's courses."
Nurunnahar Dengg, Inayatiyya, Vienna, Austria
"I have known Himayat for many years as a gifted teacher with unique insight into the Sufi way, and a wry sense of humor. I recently joined two of his online classes that explored many of the divine qualities from among the 99 names. The material for the classes included essential thematic texts that Himayat culled from some of the classic Sufi teachers. These classes are a virtual spiritual community with participants from all over the world, ranging from newer students to veteran Sufis on the path. I was particularly drawn to the practice of the divine names and the way Himayat had us working with them, which led to a deep experience of their inner flavor, tast, and atmosphere and took us beyond the level of mere verbal intonation or an intellectual explanation of their meaning. I highly recommend these classes for anyone who wants to delve deeper into the Sufi way and share with others on the path."
Sheikh Mohammad Jamal Blann, Halveti-Jerrahi Order
"There are many reasons I keep signing up for Himayat's online classes: the inspiring readings we contemplate and discuss, the exquisite accompanying meditations, the camaraderie of fellow travelers on the path from around the globe, the many "flashes" and "openings" along the way.
Our "classroom" experiences together - spaces of nuance, subtlety, beauty, and new understandings- demonstrate the fresh revelations held in each moment as described by one of the greatest Sufis, Ibn al-Arabi. These studies exercise the mind and nourish the soul.
Lakshmi Barat-Norton, Inayatiyya, Providence, Rhode Island
"Part of the explorations Himayat leads bring out the great truths of the ancient Sufis and introduce core concepts of these deep esoteric teachings. Such teachings are difficult to grasp without a guide whose teaching supports and encourages deeper attunement and understanding of their wisdom. A guide is needed who has deeply experienced these truths in their own path, and who can articulate them. I have found great inspiration for my own path in these classes, and hopefully a foundation is beginning to develop in me for delving much more deeply into this wisdom in the future.
The virtual community that develops from this is a great service and holding for spiritual life. The classes become portals that connect, sustain, hold and contain the immensity of our spiritual awakening. We are fortunate to live in an age where such wisdom can be shared so widely."
Sylvia Surya Mann, Inayatiya, London, England
"I have participated in several of Himayat's on-line classes. I find these classes to be very enriching, adding to my growth, awakening and the repository of my spiritual heart. Himayat is an experienced and deep scholar of Sufi Mysticism with a brilliant yet practical mind. Through these classes, participants are guided into the depth of the wisdom of some of the ancient Sufis, many of whom I was unaware of. One thing I love is that Himayat pulls the diamond essence from among thousands of pages of writings of these great Sufis, giving to me teachings that I would never have the time to find or read on my own! The class format is elegant simplicity, first presenting pure teaching, then through commentary revealing secrets hidden in those teachings, and finally offering "motivational attunements" (i.e. practices) allowing us to dive into the depth of the teaching and have our own experience.
Himayat, provides audio instructions for each practice, periodic video Zoom calls to clarify or discuss the teachings and there is also room for participants to share their insights and comments or ask questions via a class 'blog'. During the class I feel that Himayat holds each of its members in his heart and keeps us engaged through regular communication - he does not just post a class and then 'checkout', he is somehow aware and with us all the way through. The classes are easy to access from any device and allow me to work at my own pace. I very much enjoy them.
There is quote from our current class I'd like to share as relevant to what I feel we are doing together in these classes, it comes from Ahmad Sam'ani : 'the experienced must sit next to the experienced, speaking about the grief and happiness of this talk, for both know the worth of the work.'
Pir Moinuddin Clarke, Fraternity of Light
To Register: Send $185.00 tuition check addressed to: Universal Awakening, PO Box 1958, Leicester, North Carolina 28748 or process credit card via PayPal (Merchant: firstname.lastname@example.org / Item: Fall– 2020 Online Class).
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