Zikr Allah: the Awaisi Tareeqa
The Awaisi Tareeqa (method) of Zikr involves practicing Zikr of Ism Zaat, that is "Allah". The Zikr is practiced in the heart, hence no words are spoken and the mouth remains shut. The Zikr is coordinated with breathing, where each inhaling of breath is thought of as the word "Allah", and each exhaling is thought of as "Hu". Hu (ھُو) is a pronoun for the Name "Allah".
What is "Allah Hoo"?
People often ask the meaning of "Hu". Hu is a pronoun for Allah. It comes from the Quran. There are numerous verses that contain this pronoun, such as in "ھو الحئی القیوم". "Allah Hu" means "there's only Allah". In other words, there's none but Allah. This is the same as saying "La Ilaha ill-Allah".
The Lata-if: Subtle Points in the Chest
Zikr-Allah is practiced by concentrating on some points or areas located in the chest. These subtle points are known as "Lata-if" which is the plural of "Latifa" (something subtle or intangible). Lata-if are practiced in all Sufi Silsilas, but their number and position may be slightly different across different Silsilas. The truth is that all other Silsilas of Tasawwuf have become nearly extinct, except Silsila Naqshbandia Awaisiah. Therefore, the proper benefit can only be achieved by practicing the Lata-if by the Naqshbandi Awaisi Tareeqa.
Lata-if of the Rooh
In Silsila Naqshbandia Awaisia, there are five Lata-if of the Rooh (spirit). These five points are located in the chest. Their names and locations are as follows:
- First Latifa Qalb: It is superimposed on the physical heart, to the left side of the chest, just below the left nipple.
- Second Latifa Rooh: It is located on the right side of the chest, directly opposite to the First Latifa.
- Third Latifa Sirri: Above the First Latifa, 1-2 inches above the left nipple
- Fourth Latifa Khaffi: It is placed above the Second Latifa, directly opposite to the Third Latifa.
- Fifth Latifa Akhfa: Located in the center of the chest, on the breast bone.
These subtle entities can be considered as parts of the Rooh. These are not from this world, but from Alam-e-Amr. Allah SWT says in the Quran:
وَيَسءلُونَكَ عنْ الرُّوحِ قُلْ الرُّوحُ مِنْ أَمْرِ رَبِّي
"They ask you about the Rooh. Say, 'The Rooh if by the Amr of my Lord.'"
Bani Israeel 85 (17:85)
Hence, these entities or Lata-if are extensive in nature, and can reach all the way to the highest Realm, the Alam-e-Amar, when they are energized. These Lata-if are like the batteries or the storage in which the Lights of Allah are received and stored through Zikr-Allah.
Lata-if of the Body
Other than the above-mentioned five Lata-if of the spirit, there are two more Lata-if of the body. Their names and positions are as follows:
- Sixth Latifa Nafs: Located on the forehead.
- Seventh Latifa Sultan-ul-Azkaar: The whole body is considered as one Latifa.
It is not compulsory to know the names of the Lata-if for practicing Zikr. But one must know the positions.
The Way of Zikr
It is mandatory to have an accomplished Sufi as your guide if you want to pursue the path of Salook, the true Sufi path. But you may be able to experience some of the feelings of Tasawwuf if you practice the following Zikr.
You cannot usually start a Sufi way of Zikr after reading it somewhere. This is because the connection of the heart or Qalb must be made with the Lights, and the Lights travel from chest-to-chest. However, this humble person writing these lines has been blessed with the permission to conduct Lata-if on seekers. Therefore, the method may be effective even if you practice on your own.
Please remember that for better results, the following Zikr must be started with someone who has being practicing it for some time. And for the ultimate benefit, you must see Hazrat Major (Retd) Ghulam Muhammad, the Authorized Successor of Maulana Allah Yar Khan (RA).
The Awaisi Method
For practicing Zikr, the seeker sits on the left side of the person conducting the Zikr. If one is practicing alone, he/she can just face towards Qibla and sit in a comfortable posture, preferably on the floor. The lights are switched off. The mouth and the eyes are closed and the pace of the breathing is accelerated. While inhaling, the seeker thinks in their heart as if they are lifting the name Allah from the First Latifa.Wile exhaling, the seeker thinks as if the name of Allah is striking their heart (or the other Latifa that is being practiced).
According to the way taught by the great Sufi master and the final Shaykh of Silsila Naqshbandia Awaisia Hazrat Maulana Allah Yar Khan Rehmatullah Alaih, the Zikr is started after reciting the third Kalma, Auzubillah, and Bismillah. It is started from the First Lateefa, and after practicing the seven Lata-if, the Zaakir again comes back to the First Lateefa, practicing it for some time and ending the session. After the Lata-if, the seeker sits there with his/her eyes closed, concentrating on Allah with his/her heart (Qalb), and absorbing the Lights (Anwaraat).
The First Step
The Lata-if and Zikr-Allah are the first step on the true Sufi path, known as Salook. These are to be practiced twice a day, in the morning and in the evening. After the Lata-if become strong, the Rooh can fly to the Stations of Salook. In order to proceed further, it is imperative to have a Shaykh (or Sufi guide) who fulfills the criteria for being a Shaykh.
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