Letter from Sidi Sheikh Ahmed Tijani to Mawlana Sultan Sulaiman

« After praising ALLAH equal to all of the tribute that He pays Himself in the inaccessible Holy Presence of His Elevated Essence. His Greatness is magnified, His Splendour is powerful, his Power is exalted, His Majesty and His Generosity are sanctified. This letter is addressed to the unequalled gem, the generous breeze, holder of noble and majestic qualities, of pleasant and honourable character, of generous and protecting nature, the precious pearl that keeps all living beings in its shell, of likeable attributes, of noble and meritorious character, the pioneer in obtaining all that is precious, he who has risen to the highest spheres of consideration, he who has carried high the banner of nobility, he who, by his aspiration, has raised himself above all baseness and suspicion, he who ALLAH has surrounded on all sides with powerful and strengthening armies, he towards whom majesty and uniqueness hasten, he whose sun of felicity has risen to the sky of majesty and dignity and whose luminosity illuminates the darkness of our times like the moon, we speak of the Emir of all believers, the lieutenant of the Lord of the worlds, our lord and master Suleiman, son of our Master Muhammad, the noble Sherif, of inherent majesty, may the peace, the mercy and the blessings of ALLAH be upon you, from he who writes this, the poor servant in ALLAH, Ahmed ibn Muhammad Tidjani el Hassani.

With this, we request ALLAH, Magnified is His Greatness, Sanctified are His Names and His Attributes, to constantly blow the powerful winds of his Help and Strengthening upon our master, and that He grants him a place of Help and Righteousness in the garden of his guidance. May He fill his heart with fear of ALLAH both in public and in private, because it is only through it that those who have succeeded both “in the two” (i.e. this world and the Hereafter) obtained their station. It is only through it that those who have obtained ALLAH’s approval have succeeded both in this world and the Hereafter. What better station can raise the servant to the highest point and purify him of those vile characteristics which degrade him to the lowest depth. He is the ally and Most Capable for this. Then:

It is necessary, and I strongly advise you – because by transgressing this, we fall into loss - to hide that which we had mentioned previously, without exception. Certainly, the “chest” (i.e. the heart) of the pure people is the tomb of the secrets, the heart of the virtuous is the tomb of their secrets, and the heart of the elite is the tomb of their secrets. The following verses were recited by one of the Great Men:

My secret is enclosed in a closed room
Whose keys has been lost and the door has been padlocked
Only the holders of nobility can conceal a secret
And vile people waste it.

Nobody, not even the generous or the perfect person, can do without the advice of others.

Know that ALLAH The Most High, The Glorified and Honoured, has indeed entrusted the situation of his creatures and confided His land and His people to you. You are among the steward of ALLAH that ALLAH has charged with the responsibility of His land and His servants. Without doubt ALLAH will question you concerning His trust and your actions in this regard.

Beware that ALLAH find you negligent and distracted regarding His Rights (in your work for Him). We cannot perfect it (the work) in every aspect due to the Times, to the situation, to the lack of means as well as the state of people, so you should limit your action to the words of ALLAH: “So fear Allah as much as you are able” (Surat 64 The Mutual Disillusion, verse 16) and to the words of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him): “If I ordain you to do something, do what you can, and if I forbid something, then abandon it.”

I warn you about the specificities that ALLAH the Most High has granted you through His Grace. Do not think that you are protected against ALLAH’s ruse in all situations. ALLAH the Most High said: “But no one feels secure from the plan of Allah except the losing people.” (Surat 7 The Heights, verse 99) because, certainly, ALLAH, may He be Exalted, over and above His special blessings, has a ruse, an intrigue and a jealousy with which He seizes His servant where he least expects it, even if he is among those who have received specificities.

I advise you to take care of the weak among the creatures because they are the object of his Divine Gaze. Your station will rise proportionally to your solicitude towards them. I advise you to take care of the oppressed because the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, or words to that effect, that he who has been given the charge to rule and then hides from the needy, so as not to take care of them, then ALLAH will hide from him, that is to say that when he needs ALLAH concerning something that has befallen him and presents his requests to ALLAH, imploring His Help in this matter, ALLAH will not take care of it and He will not turn towards him, He will not heed his evocation and his supplication. By ALLAH! ALLAH! Think well about the way to satisfy ALLAH by taking care of the needs of the oppressed, without thoughtlessness or negligence.

And may the Peace, the Mercy, the Blessing of ALLAH be upon you, and may the prayer and the peace of ALLAH be upon our master Muhammad, his family and his companions. »

Research and translation by Zawiya Tidjaniya el Kubra in Lyon, France