The new student or seeker takes an oath before The Creator of all (gives Bay’ah) to abide by the school’s codes based on the Qur’an and Prophetic ways. This is much like when students apply to a school, or a university they pledge to abide by the school’s codes of conduct and regulations. All codes that are in the Book and authentic Sunnah are binding, and any code that is not based thereon is simply not.
Joining a school of Ihsan (pledging/giving Ba’yah) to uphold the Qur’anic and authentic Sunnah codes of conduct while dedicating part of your daily time for Allah’s Dhikr, love, reflection, and litanies (~ 10 min. daily) and intending to devote part of your life to positively contribute to the mission of Sayyiduna Rasool’Allah (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi wa sallam) is not for everybody. It is extra (beyond the Fard/obligatory) hence, it should be for the passionate and devoted.
Bay’ah is an ancient sacred ritual and a spiritual bond that has its root in the Prophetic Sunnah, in which the Sahaba (Peace and blessings be upon them all) gave their pledge (took an oath) of commitment, devotion, and allegiance to the Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi wa sallam) and his mission. Bayʾah is in effect, pledging exactly that, with the current teacher being simply a witness to the pledge and a guide on the Prophetic path and to it. The current Shaykh is not pledged to, rather pledged before as a witness and a guide. The pledged to is none other than Sayyiduna Rasūl’Allah, ṣallallahu Taʾāla ʾalayhi wa Ᾱlihi wa sallam, before Allāh; The Creator of all. The pledge entails the same things the Sahaba (Prophetic companions) pledged to, namely: commitment, devotion, and allegiance to the Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi wa sallam) and his mission, to refine ourselves and improve Akhlaq (character building), to maximize our potential vis-à-vis The Creator and His creation. In other words, to be good people and positively contributing people, to love God, and love people.
Bayʾah nowadays is more of a spiritual connection, pledge and bond than physical devotion, nearness and servitude of the Mosque. It may help connect the new student spiritually to all his or her spiritual ancestors all the way up to the beloved Prophet, ṣallallahu Taʾāla ʾalayhi wa Ᾱlihi wa sallam. However, what is expected is establishing Dhikr on daily basis, and journeying the path to Allah Ta’ala, not just affiliation.
The oath to be initiated in our Zawiya (school/Tariqah) is a commitment by the heart to:
1 – Bear witness to Lā ilāha illa Allāh, Muḥammad Rasūl Allāh.
2 – Uphold the Farāiḍ, then as much as one can from the Prophetic Sunnah.
3 – Uphold the foundations and objectives of our Zawiya (school), and devote some time for learning, servitude, sharing, self-improvement, positive contribution and refinement, all of which are mandated by the Book and authentic Prophetic Sunnah. Similarly to enjoin your fellow seekers and students in the Zawiya to do good and to try to uphold the General Wird daily.
If anyone agrees to the above 3 conditions, then they are encouraged to follow the objectives, methodology, and practices as no authorization is required for anyone to read the Qur’an or Sunnah and practice them. For those who seek such an authorization, nevertheless, then authorization (Ijaza) in the General Wird (as in Methodology and Practices) is hereby granted to all human beings who accept the above condition.
General authorization to recite our basic daily Dhikr (Wird/litany) including a general Ijaza to all in the Shādhilī General Wird:
The Shaykh of our Zawiya; Sīdī Muḥammad hereby authorizes all human beings who will accept the above commitment (the 3 conditions in the pledge line) with all the general litanies (Al-Wird al-ʾᾹm) of the Shādhilī school (Tariqah).
Students who have accepted this, either physically or spiritually, can pass the General Wird to their families and friends without needing to ask the Shaykh of the Zawiya or his appointed representatives for permission or authorization.
All new seekers and students are encouraged to spread an environment of spirituality and love in their families and friends, hold sessions of Dhikr and remembrance and serve their communities. They are encouraged to seek more training and learning from the Shaykh of the Zawiya or his appointed lead students. If an official Zawiya or a Madina branch is nearby, then they are encouraged to contribute positively through their local Zawiya or Madina branch.
The book Ḥaqīqat al-Taṣawwuf fī al-Kitāb wa al-Sunnah (حقيقة التصوف في الكتاب والسنة لمحمد بن يحيى النينوي) by Sīdī Muḥammad bin Yaḥya al-Nīnowy is important in understanding our school of Taṣawwuf from a Qur’an and Sunnah perspective. Sufism or Tazkiyah is refinement, and this is what is sought by every seeker. Akhlaq, Adab, love, unconditional mercy, sharing, caring, servitude, selflessness, and positive contribution, are key values to be improved as a seeker along the path.
The proper beginning (before pledging an oath) must be by:
1- Refraining from any Kabirah (grave sin) immediately.
2- Starting the Faraa’id (obligatory 5 Salawat/day, etc.) immediately.
3- Gradually refraining from all the Haram (its all harm).
4- Starting the inclusion of some Sunan (non-obligatory prayers and other Prophetic practices) and maintaining them.
5- Upholding the Sunnah Dhikr after the five prayers.
6- The basic daily prescribed Wird (litany) mentioned above.
Anyone who accepts the above three conditions of the pledge. Blessed are those who come in peace.
Anyone who joined (gave a Bay’ah/pledge) can, at anytime, leave for any reason and without having to give any explanation. Blessed are those who leave in peace.
1. Please read the “What is a Bay’ah” section.
2. Make the intention accordingly.
3. Pledge in your heart before The Creator of all to the following:
a. Bear witness to Lā ilāha illa Allāh, Muḥammad Rasūl Allāh
b. To uphold the Farāiḍ, then as much as one can from the Prophetic Sunnah.
c. To uphold the foundations and objectives of our Zawiya (school), and devote some time for learning, servitude, sharing, self-improvement, positive contribution and refinement, all of which are as mandated by the Book and authentic Prophetic Sunnah. Similarly to enjoin your fellow seekers and students in the Zawiya in doing good and try to uphold the General Wird daily.
Once you have said/accepted the above three conditions in your heart, feel free to introduce yourself, your name, location, and some background to us, if you want to, on the below button. Regardless, welcome to the spiritual world of Tazkiyah, Iḥsān and Sufism. We hope your journey and wayfaring to illumination and the Presence of the All-Loving Creator of all is a joyful and productive one. Share the love.
One of the senior mureeds will get in touch with you. In the meantime, please utilize the Resources section.