Thursday, 25 May 2017

Quote of the Day: In the Eyes of God...

‘In the eyes of God, the best time to please God is when you are young.’ - Lord Ra Riaz Gohar Shahi

Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Sirat-e-Mustaqeem Kiya Hai?


Main Points: 

-- The Koran mentions Sirat-e-Mustaqeem in the very beginning, however, what it is in itself is not explained. Sirat-e-Mustaqeem is not an action you carry out in order to obtain it. Sirat-e-Mustaqeem in actuality is the obedience of your Spiritual Guide. 

- Wahhabis and Deobandis try to misguide people by saying the verse in Koran which mentions Sirat-e-Mustaqeem means that one should not ask prophets or saints for help because God is enough for them. However, HDE Gohar Shahi gave the true explanation: You cannot obtain guidance without God's help and God's help comes in the form of saints and spiritual dignitaries. 

- God has created mankind for the purpose of his worship. People are already engaged in worship so why is it that their worship will be thrown back in their faces? Why is their worship not guaranteeing them entrance to Paradise? So, which worship has God created us for? It is not the physical worship you carry out with your body. Your body is not your reality, it is your soul. 

- It is the soul which is supposed to engage in worship in order to fulfil the type of worship we were created for. How does one engage the souls in worship? With the help of God which comes in the form of Spiritual Dignitaries, they are able to access our souls, enlighten them, and connect them to God. It is for such people it is said 'Follow the path of those whom God has rewarded'. 

- God's reward does not come in the form of wealth, it is reaching the station of Seeing God. Those who have seen God and his image has been stamped on their heart, sitting in their company will enlighten your heart and the Divine Light that is generated within the heart travels towards God, another rope of Divine Light travels towards your heart from God and the point where the two ropes join together is Sirat-e-Mustaqeem. 

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Quote of the Day: Spirituality is a Revival...


'Spirituality is a revival.' - Younus AlGohar

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Quote of the Day: The Most Important Verification...


'The most important verification of things will come from your own inner voice.' - Younus AlGohar

Monday, 22 May 2017

Self-Awareness Level 2, Lesson 6: Pattern of Human Behaviour


Editor's note: the following is the sixth lesson in Younus AlGohar's course on Self-Awareness, Level 2: Emotional Intelligence.


Step 1 - Controlling Emotions

The objective of studying emotional intelligence is to obtain the ability to acquire control over the emotions.

Sometimes, the pain we feel is so much that we are emotionally overwhelmed. Sometimes we are able to control our overwhelming emotions. Other times, we give into the flow and that is when we suffer the most. In such a situation, we should not let go of ourselves; we should be able to control our emotions.

Perhaps this is what patience is. Some people mix patience with forbearance, but the ability to control your emotions is patience. There is a significant difference between patience and forbearance. Forbearance is for physical pain and suffering, whereas patience is to do with the ability to control your emotions - to put your foot down and not let go of yourself.
Controlling emotions is very close in meaning to a Sufi term known as ‘Zarf’, which means great endurance.
Endurance is like durability.  For example, there are different kinds of suitcases on the market: Atelier, American Tourister, Samsonite, Delsey, Tommy, Rivera and Rimowa. They are made with different fibres, materials and matter. The most durable material will be sold at the most expensive price. How do we assess the durability? Durability is assessed by applying pressure and power to see how much the material can endure. Some materials that they make suitcases with will break easily while some others are really durable.

If it is a material and it is not easy to break, it is called durability. If it is a human being who can take any amount of pressure, doesn’t crack under pressure and survives, that is called endurance. Durability and endurance are brother and sister, so to speak.

Are Your Prayers Being Answered?

Emotions, when they are overwhelmingly excessive, behave like alcohol.

Some people are so affected by their emotions that if you check their pulse and blood pressure when they are emotionally charged up, the reading will be the same as if they were drunk. Any news - whether it is extremely good or extremely bad - will run shockwaves through their bodies.

Especially in Pakistan, when people go to apply for a visa to a western country, their hearts run like horses. Even if they don’t believe in God, at that moment in time God is very much in demand; he serves as an agent. To some people, the religious stuff works miracles. This is all cogitation. Whether or not God helps you, you have this imagination to hold onto when you believe in God.

We human beings are so ‘good’, we pray to God when we are in adversity. We call upon God when in need. There is a momentary soothing effect when you pray to God, even though you know, deep down in your heart, that God isn’t going to answer. It is just a mind game.

A prayer has a very soothing effect. This is why intelligent people suffer more because they don’t believe in God.

How many people are religious? The majority of people who practise a religion are not from well-to-do families and not opulent. They are those who have to go to the worship places to pray to God for a loaf of bread. Obviously, they will get a loaf of bread from here or there. Someone will come and even if he doesn’t believe in God, he will feel pity for them and give them a loaf of bread. Then the [religious man] will say, ‘Oh look, God heard my prayers. I was hungry; somebody came and fed me.’

This is the pattern of our behaviour. You will never appreciate the efforts of the person who helped you, but thankfulness from you will go to God. Human beings will do us a favour but we will never appreciate their favour. Instead of saying ‘Thank you,’ to the people who help us, we will say, ‘God, you have been so nice to me,’ and God does not know a thing about what is going on.

These religious people, at the time of adversity, find their solace in prayers and worship. However, when they are happy, how will they control their emotions now? When religious people are happy, they forget God. They only remember him at the time of need.

At the time of adversity, you can control your emotions through prayer, meditation, yoga and various different things. However, some people take the world by storm when they are happy. The way they behave when they’re extraordinarily happy, it is like they’re drunk. They lose their intelligence.

Step 2- Making Use of Emotions

Emotional intelligence is the ability to control and make use of your emotions. Controlling emotions is understandable, but what is making use of emotions?

When some people are emotionally charged up, you can convince them to give you donations. When they are not emotionally charged up, you tell them a thousand stories related to God, but they will never give you any donations. It is really bad to take advantage of somebody’s emotional state, however, as long as you are not ripping their pockets off and convincing them to contribute to a good cause, it is okay. When they are emotionally charged up, their emotions will make them do it. This is perhaps where the proverb comes from, ‘strike while the iron is still hot.’

In the moment when somebody is emotionally charged up and you give him His Divine Eminence Gohar Shahi’s message of love, those emotions will help him understand your mission and message.

When I was in Pakistan, I had a friend and I would tell him about HDE Gohar Shahi every day. He would always turn a deaf ear on me. But then one day, when his father died, we went to the graveyard for the burial. He buried his father and we were sitting there. He was telling me, ‘Everyone has to die one day.’ Then, I told him about HDE Gohar Shahi. I was really shocked: he was listening to me very carefully. I thought he was just winding me up and maybe in another minute he would stand up and say, ‘Look, I made a fool out of you.’ But no, we spent a good one hour there. He was crying and telling me, ‘You’re right.’ Then we went to HDE Gohar Shahi and he was granted Opening of the Spiritual Heart.

I always wondered why he never understood the message before, but after his father died, it was like he was waiting for it. The difference was, when his father died and he was in the graveyard, he was overwhelmed with emotions. You need to see which emotion goes with what message.

God, somehow or other, is attached with suffering, starvation and a sense of deprivation. When you are in the spiritual and emotional vicinity of pain and suffering, then comes the message of God. People are looking for solace and comfort. Nothing is more comforting than something that can secure your future, especially if you are standing in a graveyard.
Now at this stage, controlling your emotions is Step 1. Step 2 is the ability to make use of those emotions. Some people who are evil will obviously make a bad use of your emotions.
You have to guard your emotions like you guard your virginity. Anybody can come and tell you a story; you shouldn’t expose your emotions to people.
You cannot take advantage of somebody’s emotions. You only use it for a good purpose. Making use of emotions is only allowed for the other person’s goodness, not your own goodness. But cunning people do the opposite. When they see somebody is emotional, they will come and sell them a story, fill their own pockets and run away. This is why emotional intelligence is very important in life.

We have discussed emotional intelligence and also the awareness of emotional intelligence so that If somebody is in an emotional state, we can respect their emotions and then how to help them control their emotions.

Some people are very vulnerable and when they are overwhelmed with emotions, they cannot control their emotions. But what are friends for? If you have a friend who is going through such an emotional crisis phase in his life, it is your moral obligation to go and fix his emotional problems and help him control his emotions. Maybe they don’t know how to control their emotions; they may get carried away in those emotions and cause great harm. If they cannot control their emotions, as a friend, you should be volunteering yourself in controlling their emotions and making sure nobody makes use of their emotions.

When you are angry, in the heat of the moment, you say silly things that you don’t mean. Similarly, when you are in an emotional state, the world looks different, everything looks different. In normal life, you will see that there are many hurdles but when you are emotionally charged up, you will see no boundaries. You think you can do anything.
Intelligence does not work when you are emotionally charged up. I personally believe that you have to be more emotionally intelligent than this mental intelligence. Emotions are so powerful; they supersede all your intellect. Emotions can screw up your intellect any time and make your head empty of intellect.

If you have £100 and you see people are starving and suffering, you’ll give it all away in an emotional state. When you come back home, you will only blame yourself. You will say, ‘Why did I do that?’ If you do this in spirituality, it is not allowed. What is not allowed in spirituality? That you were emotionally overwhelmed and saw somebody starving and in need, you gave him or her all your money and when you came home, you now regret it.
It is not allowed in spirituality to do a good thing and regret it later on.
You should measure your goodness and charity and always keep emotional and intellectual intelligence intact.
‘I think I should give him £20, and then I will be left with £30. I can easily manage one week with £30.’ Now you will not regret it. But if you donate £100 and you only had £100, then that was a one-off charity. You will never do that charity again in your life.
Sometimes, emotions can really misguide you. Emotions should be intact with intellectualism. If the intellect is separated from emotions, you are in trouble.
My father used to say, ‘Do not be too sweet or people will swallow you. Do not be too bitter or people will spit you out [Urdu Proverb].’ We have to stay in the middle.
Every human being should be emotionally intelligent and you will only do certain things when you are emotionally intelligent.

Self-Awareness Level 2, Lesson 5: Where Your Moral Values Come From



Editor's note: the following is the fifth lesson in Younus AlGohar's course on Self-Awareness, Level 2: Emotional Intelligence.


How Emotional Intelligence Affects Every Aspect of Life

When a singer is singing a sad song, he has to feel the pain the words delivered in the song. Happy or humourous songs also have to be sung with emotions; they call it the feeling. In a similar way, when we listen to the news like Sky News, BBC News, CNN etc., we see emotions are involved in the way the newscaster delivers the news. If the news is sad, we see emotions of sadness and sorrow emanating from his face and if it’s good news, he will smile. Now, a doctor’s job is really difficult because every patient that comes to see him brings bad news. The doctor has to be in the same mood, or at least the same emotional state (even if it is fake, he has to show that emotionally he is aware of the situation), and this is emotional intelligence.

What are moral etiquettes? If somebody tells us, ‘my mother died five years ago’, in that moment if we skip saying ‘I am really sorry’, people will be really offended. We need to be aware of these things and have some moral etiquettes, some emotional intelligence and its awareness.

Emotions play a pivotal role in our life. For example, if you see a child who needs milk but his/her parents are unable to provide milk, it will remind you of your own child. When you think about your own child, your emotions will be charged up. In that emotional state, you start to help the child that doesn’t belong to you.

We’re only concerned about ourselves. This should not be the case with a spiritual person. We must observe all spiritual, social and moral etiquettes, so that we do not cause any harm, physical or emotional, to any individual in this world. If somebody looks a bit sad or emotionally down, you should respect his emotional state. Change the way you speak to him every day, be a little more polite with him. This is emotional intelligence. 

Emotional Intelligence Crisis

Emotions push you to do good things, however, at the same time, these emotions can backfire.

For example, some Muslims blew up a bomb and many people died. Later on, a Muslim guy is seen showing his anger to somebody in a neighbourhood, somebody watching him may be reminded of the Muslim terrorists, and his emotions will reach their peak. Maybe in that emotional state, that man [watching] can cause any amount of harm to that Muslim guy who is shouting and abusing others. This is how people become outrageous sometimes. Backlashes and hate crimes are the prime examples.

A Kurdish boy was beaten up badly by eight people. He didn’t do anything wrong, he was just Muslim but this happened because so many Muslim terrorists are causing a lot of distress and have become a threat to the national security of many countries of the world. This has become a very sensitive matter and it can happen anytime, anywhere and it is all to do with emotions.

Not every Muslim is a terrorist. Sikhs - because they grow beards and wear turbans like Muslims - are easily recognisable to Muslims; they can identify them as Sikhs because their turban is different and by the length of their beard, etc. But after 9/11 in Arizona, the Americans who were naive to Islam or Sikhism, when they spotted somebody with a turban and a big beard, they thought the Sikh man was Muslim and killed him. This is an emotional intelligence crisis.

To help stop terrorism, it is not just about deradicalisation, you also have to take care of the emotional intelligence of people so that people do not become outrageous and are able to control their own emotions.

Moral and Societal Values

One important thing in the study of emotional intelligence is moral values and ethical codes.

Morality in this world has different shapes, forms and sources. Some people find moral values from their society. In our society, certain things are allowed and some things are not allowed. For example, in a British town, the societal values will definitely differ from a Pakistani town.

Sometimes the society is deeply and vehemently affected by the religion of the land and its code of conduct; its ethical code and moral values come from the religion. In Pakistan, a woman and a man cannot have a sexual relationship without marriage but in a British town, with consent, adults can enter into a sexual relationship and can even live together. Society here will allow it because it is not against the moral values of British society.

Moral values differ from society to society, because each society has a different source for its moral values. However, sometimes your moral values come neither from any religion nor the society. Sometimes you are the boss and make your own rules. I have heard people saying, ‘In my family, nobody can do this. This is against our family law and tradition.’  Therefore, there is not just one single source of morality.

In order to have precise understanding and awareness of emotional intelligence, we need to first see what moral values we have adopted. Only after determining the source of our moral values can we detect the awareness of emotional intelligence.
You need to find the source. What is it that dictates your emotions? What is it that brings rage and fury in your emotional state? It is your belief system.
Those who are religious, are very difficult and it is very difficult for them to be emotionally intelligent. They are swimming in the ocean of their religion; their mind is messed up. It’s not possible for somebody to be religious and rational at the same time. Religions will always make you irrational.

For example, Muslims in Luton, are carrying banners and saying, ‘we will impose Sharia.’ They’re looking at white women and saying, ‘your dress is not according to Islam.’ She doesn’t practise Islam! Why are you telling her? It is your religion, why are you imposing your religion on others? It simply means your mind is messed up. It is not rationality, is it? But this is the reality. Does a Christian have the same rights in a Muslim country as Muslims have in the west? Muslims are allowed to build their mosques here. Can a Christian man go to Saudi Arabia and do whatever he wants to do according to his religion?

Look at how good this secular system is! You know why they do it? It’s because their mind is not messed up. If people in the west were also very religious, practising Christians, they would behave the same way. But because they are non-practising Christians, their mind is not messed up by the religion hence they behave like human beings. They have generosity, rationality and their own moral codes. Their moral code is: whatever religion somebody practises, they should have the fundamental necessities of life.

Why should we follow a religion when a religion is taking away humanity from human beings?  Why do we have this fanatic ideology uprising? Why do we have this extremism spreading like fire? Why is hatred prevailing? Because there is a conflict in morality. The standards you may have, the other person does not have the same standards of moral values.

Your emotional intelligence is directly linked to moral values. Unfortunately, moral values in different societies have different sources therefore what may be a moral act according to you may not be moral to somebody else.
When we talk about morality, our morality is not universal. Our morality is more regional than global. We all have different standards of morality.
Now according to some form of morality, you only hide your private parts. If you are hiding the nipples, your morality is perfect. In most of the secular, moral cultures, women are not allowed to show their nipples, it would be too obscene and immoral. According to liberal Muslims, women can show half their chest. They have accepted it and it has become part of their moral values. 

Moral values are changing according to secular culture. According to religious culture, moral values are frozen; they have become stagnant. Even the law of the land can shape your moral values. When you are a religious person and your moral values come from religion you do not recognise any other form of morality, which obviously means intolerance is at its peak. You cannot coexist with others in the same society.
Universal morality has to do with tolerance. What you like to do, you should be allowed to do. What others like to do, you shouldn’t be bothered about it.
What is a sin? There are two forms of sins according to a religion. A sin which goes against humanity, you hurt and harm humanity and the other sin which goes against you, which hurts and harms you. Those that hurt and harm you are of less implication. A sin that involves others, causes pain, hurt and harm to others, that is severity. That is to be stopped.
Do not try to impose your beliefs on others. Let everybody live their life the way they want to live it.

Emotional Intelligence and God

When God has emotional intelligence, then why don’t  people who follow a religion have it?

The reason is God doesn’t follow the same religion. God’s religion is different. His religion is love. The problem is, he only practises his religion with those that practise his religion: The religion of love. 

These religions that have been established by prophets and messengers, the standard of morality these religions render to its followers very much depends on the society at the time these religions were established. What was the standard of religious morality in those times when Prophet Mohammad came to the peninsula of Arab? What was the standard of morality at the time when Jesus came to Jerusalem? You will see a slight improvement in the standard of morality after the religion introduced its moral values. If you want to compare the standards of morality now with the standards back then, you will fall back. The standard of morality in those days was really strict. This was about the religion and followers of the religions.

However in all eras, in all ages, whoever was introduced to the knowledge of spirituality, the knowledge of eminence, their emotional intelligence equalled the intelligence of God. They didn’t pick up their moral values from the religion, they picked it up from spirituality. The standard of spiritual values is vast. They embrace and forgive anyone. Most of the irregular things in this world according to moral values are okay for Sufis. No damage is done. You can do what you want to do as long as you don’t hurt others. 

This should be the case with everybody today. Allow everybody to do what they want to do. There is a voice within everybody that guides them and tells them not to do wrong, no matter what religion they practise. Even atheists who don’t practise any religion or believe in God, do not want to sleep with their sisters or mothers. Why don’t they do it?  Because these are basic principles and natural human instincts.
Let our moral values derive from basic principles of humanity.

Quote of the Day: Emotions Are Like Waves...

Emotions are like waves of the ocean. They move our entire beings from one point to another.’ - Younus AlGohar, Optimising Your IQ