THE TIDJANIYA'S CONDITIONS
THE TIDJANIYA'S CONDITIONS CAN BE DIVIDED INTO 5 CATEGORIES:
1ST CATEGORY: THE SPECIAL COMPANIONSHIP BETWEEN THE SHEIKH AND HIS DISCIPLE
1. The disciple should follow no other spiritual path for the entire duration of his life.
2. The disciple should limit his visits to the saints, whether they are dead or alive to those that have been authorized by Sidi Ahmed Tijani (may ALLAH sanctify his precious secret), although he should show full respect for the sanctity of all the saints. It is permitted to visit the companions (May Allah be satisfied with them all) of the Prophet (Peace and blessings be upon him), those who follow the Tidjaniya path, and, of course, the Prophets.
3. The disciple must perform all the mandatory prayers of the Tidjaniya, i.e. the compulsory litanies (the adhkar which are: the Lazim, Wadhifa, and Hadra on Friday), with great care and assiduity, throughout his life. Note that when a pious vow has been taken, even though, from a general point of view, a voluntary good deed may be considered to be commendable, it becomes obligatory within the context of the pious vow.
4. The disciple must never express outrage, animosity or hostility towards Seyidina Ahmed Tidjani (May Allah be satisfied with him). Such disrespectable behaviour is characterized, for example, by not heeding his recommendations and warnings.
5. The disciple must always and unceasingly show love towards Seyidina Ahmed Tijani (may ALLAH be satisfied with him).
6. The disciple must never criticize Seyidina Ahmed Tijani (may ALLAH be satisfied with him).
7. The follower must firmly believe and never refute the words of Seyidina Ahmed Tijani (may ALLAH be satisfied with him), for they follow the Qur'aan and Sunnah. The same applies to all of the Awliya.
The follower who disrespects any of these conditions will immediately lose his affiliation to the Tariqa. He will only reconnect with Sheikh Ahmed Tijani (may ALLAH be satisfied with him) after repenting, and, having renewed his pact with him, (with one of his Muqqaddam), expressing profound sincerity in the desire to further his education.
2ND CATEGORY : ALTHOUGH THIS CATEGORY OF CONDITIONS DOES NOT LEAD TO AN IMMEDIATE RUPTURE OF THE AFFILIATION (THE FLUX) BETWEEN THE SHEIKH AND THE DISCIPLE,THEY SHOULD NONETHELESS BE RESPECTED BY ALL.
1. The disciple should uphold, through knowledge and action, all the commandments of the Law (SHARIA), among which figures the timely practise of the 5 daily prayers, in congregation when possible, respecting their conditions, their pillars, and their different parts, in continuous devotion. Likewise, the disciple should recite the Basmala linked to the Fatiha with a quiet or loud voice, according to the prayer,if the context permits, without seeking divergence, which can lead to controversy. The disciple should perform the bow (ruku) and the prostration (sajda) calmly, whilst pronouncing the adequate formulas of glorification at least 3 times.
2. The disciple should never imagine himself safe from God’s ruse: by this we mean counting on God’s mercy, or the intercession of His Prophet, or that of Seyidina Sheikh (may Allah be pleased with him), meanwhile committing sins.
3. The disciple should be kind to his parents.
4. The disciple should not claim the title of Muqaddam when it is not the case. According to some Awliya, this is a sure sign of a negative outcome.
5. The disciple should not neglect the Tidjaniya's mandatory litanies.This includes deferring them for no valid reason.
6.The disciple should show respect to all those affiliated to Seyidina Ahmed Tijani (may ALLAH be satisfied with him) even more so to the elite among them.
7.The disciple should avoid the company of the Tidjaniya’s detractors, for this can be a cause for trouble.
8.The disciple should not sever the ties that link him to other beings except in the case of religious necessity, and least of all with his brothers in the Tidjaniya.
9.The disciple should perform the Wadhifa and the 'Asrou (Hadra of the Friday) in congregation whenever possible.
Whosoever fails to respect any one of these conditions should resume immediately and with enthusiasm, in order that Allah (The Glorified and The Exalted) permits him to remain in the Tariqa.
3RD CATEGORY: CONDITIONS OF VALIDITY FOR THE MANDATORY EVOCATIONs OF THE TIDJANIYA
1. The disciple should formulate the intention
2. The disciple should perform ablutions with water or Tayyamoun, in accordance with Sharia precepts.
3. Purification of body, clothes and space is required, in accordance with prayer rules.
4. The disciple is required to cover his body (awrah) as for salat (prayers).
5. The disciple must not speak during the mandatory litanies of the Tariqa Tidjaniya, from the beginning to the end, except in absolute necessity, in which case he may communicate by gestures, and if he is not understood, then he may say one or two words.
There are three exceptions to this rule: the disciple may speak freely to his parents, the wife to her husband, and the follower to his Sheikh (his Muqaddam). The disciple must refrain from eating and drinking during the mandatory litanies. Even a little (a sip, or what remains between the teeth) invalidates the Lazim. As for the Wadhifa, it is a little more that invalidates it.
Whosoever disrespects any of these conditions renders his evocations invalid, and it is his duty to perform them again.
6. CONDITIONS FOR RECITING JAWHARATU-L-KAMAL
This requires pure water (for the ablution) and a clean place that is large enough for six people, even if it is for a single recitation. It is forbidden to recite it while mounted or on a boat. If the follower does the Tayammum (dry ablution), or if he is unable to clean himself with water after relieving himself, or if he has filth (najas) on his clothes or his body which he is not able to clean, he will recite Salat El Fatihi twenty times instead of Djaouharatou-l-Kamel during the Wadhifa. If the disciple does not meet all these special conditions for the recitation of the Djaouharatou-l-Kamel, when performing Wadhifa, it is invalidated, and he will be required to do it again
4TH CATGORY: RECOMMENDED BEHAVIOUR FOR THE EVOCATIONS. FAILURE TO RESPECT THESE CONDITIONS DOES NOT INVALIDATE THE PRAYERS, BUT DOES, HOWEVER, REDUCE THEIR EFFECTIVENESS IN TERMS OF DIVINE LIGHT.
1. The prayers should be performed in the sitting position. Standing or lying down is improper without specific reasons. Reciting the invocations whilst walking does not lead to invalidation, but it is emphasized that in this case, the disciple should avoid at all costs walking on filth.
2. The prayers should be recited facing the Qibla, excepting whilst travelling, even a short distance, if this is impossible.
3. The litanies are to be pronounced in a low voice in such a way that the disciple can hear himself reciting them. When in congregation, the litanies are to be performed out loud, but harmoniously.
4. The disciple should understand the meaning of the litanies, and to cultivate good pronunciation.
5. The disciple should visualize the image of Seyidina Ahmed Tijani (may Allah be satisfied with him) and, even better, the image of the Prophet himself (Peace and blessings be upon him).
5TH CATEGORY: CONDITIONS THAT VALIDATE THE TRANSMISSION OF AFFILIATION TO THE TARIQA.
1. Authenticity of the Muqqadem ,of the transmittal channel and of each link in the chain, all the way up to Seyidina Ahmed Tijani (may Allah be pleased with him)
2. Validity of the candidate seeking to become a disciple on the path: he should be a Muslim with true faith, free from any other spiritual path and any litanies from any other spiritual path. He should be determined to remain in the Tariqa for his whole lifetime, he must agree with all the Tidjaniya’s conditions which should be read and explained to him.