nur

The Divine Reality of Nur (Light)

The Divine Reality of Nur (Light)

Nur, the Divine light. What does Nur mean in Faqr (Sufism)? What does Nur (Divine light) apply to? Does the Nur (Divine light) that takes one out of evil and ignorance mean the light of an eye, or the light of an intellect? Or is the Divine reality of Nur (Light) even superior than that? We try to answer these questions in this blog. 

Allah says in Quran:

Allah is the Guardian of the believers. He brings them out of (all kinds of) darkness and takes them towards the Nur ( light.)’ (2: 257)

quran

Light of Eye 

The majority of us refer to the light of an eye as ‘Divine light’ (Nur). As most people say, staring at the light (Nur) of the sun, affects the light of an eye (sight). It is a common saying that light of an eye of bat is weak and the light of an eye of blind person is missing. 

Al-Ghazali describes “Divine light” (Nur) in his book “Mishkat al-Anwar” as: 

Nur (Divine light) means to see oneself and to see others through it.

According to this definition, light of an eye cannot be referred to as Nur (Divine light) as the eye sees the “other” but cannot see “itself” nor can it see what is farther away, what is closer and what is hidden. The eye can examine the physical aspects of objects but cannot see the esoteric ones. The eye often perceives the large as small and the distant as near, the static as moving and the moving as static. 

Thus, the light of an eye is unable to unveil the reality of Nur (Divine light). The eye is definitely a very important part of the body, but it is not the light that unlocks the esoteric locks and frees from darkness and enlightens the exoteric and esoteric being. 

Allama-Iqbal

Iqbal says,

دلِ بینا بھی کر خدا سے طلب

آنکھ کا نور دل کا نور نہیں

Explanation: Pray for an enlivened soul as it witnesses Allah’s grandeur from the light (of Ism-e-Azam Ism-e-Allah Zaat). The enlightenment of inward eyes shows what the physical eyes cannot see. (Bal-e-Jibril)

Light of Intellect 

Comparing light of eye with light of intellect, we find that light of intellect has many advantages and superiority over light of eye. It is the intellect that makes the man superior to animals and beasts, and because of this man has the status of “Ashraf-ul-Makhluqat” (the noblest or superior of all creatures). 

 

Comparison of Light of Eye and Light of Intellect

The observations of an eye are narrower while the observations of the intellect are broader. The eye can see other things but cannot see itself. On the contrary, the intellect can see itself in the same way as it can see someone else. It knows its own abilities and attributes.

The eye cannot determine what is nearer to it and what is farther away from it, but the intellect can. In the blink of an eye, it travels through the heavens, reaching the bottom of the earth in an instant. The intellect can also recognise the esoteric aspects, mysteries and their realities. It is better to say that the intellect is the king and the eye is subordinate to it which informs intellect about the things that can be seen through it.

Wise and experienced people can make mistakes in their opinions or decisions. The real reason for this is they give preference to speculations and assumptions over their intellect. The intellect is an eternal blessing bestowed by Allah Almighty. It is also a tool that helps in distinguishing between right and wrong. 

Can Human Intellect Lead to Destination?

Does the intellect lead us to our destination as Muslims? Can it intellect free us from time and space and lead us to the station of no station? Can the light of intellect reveal Divine secrets?

Iqbal says,

گزر جا عقل سے آگے کہ یہ نور

چراغِ راہ ہے منزل نہیں ہے

Explanation: “Go beyond intellect because it is just the beacon of path. It can only show you the path to Allah but love takes you to the destination that is His gnosis and union. It is impossible to reach that station by intellect because it is unable to encompass Him. (Bal-e-Jibril) 

The intellect depends on questions like why, what, how and how much. With the help of intellect, man can explore the seven heavens and different aspects of things. But to explore the esoteric existence which is called the “Greater World” requires the Nur (Divine light) and this differs from the light of intellect. The intellect has the ability to control all aspects of universe, but it does not have the power to enlighten the esoteric self with the light of guidance.

Advice of Sufi Saints

Sufi saints and mystics urge to go beyond the dimensions of intellect on the path of Divine love.

  • Sultan Bahoo says in Risala Roohi Sharif, “To understand the quiddity of Divine Essence, countless efforts of wisdom went in vain.’’
  • Rumi says, ‘’We can never describe Divine love by intellect and knowledge.’’
  • He further states,

    رہِ عقل جز پیچ در پیچ نیست

    رہِ عاشقاں جز خدا ہیچ نیست

    Meaning: “The path of intellect is very complicated but the path of lovers is none other than the love of Allah Himself.”

 

  • Khawaja Hafiz utters, “The expression of love does not need any articulation.”

 

Hence proved that the intellect is the source of knowledge and wisdom but its scope is limited. It is certainly the beacon but not the destination.

Quran – The Light of Guidance 

Allah says in Quran:

So, believe in Allah and His Messenger (pbuh) and that Light which We have sent down. And Allah is Well Aware of the deeds that you do. (64:9) 

Al-Ghazali writes in his book “Mishkat al-Anwar”, 

‘The greatest wisdom is the word of Allah Almighty and Quran in particular among His words. Therefore, the verses of the Quran are the light for intellect as is the sun for human eye. Now, it is appropriate to call Quran as “Light”, just as the light of the sun is called light. The Quran is an example of the light of the sun and the intellect is an example of the light of the eye.’

So, the Divine light refers to the light that enlightens the inward and outward of human being with the light of guidance. Indeed, Allah revealed Quran to the seal of Prophethood, Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) to guide mankind. Quran is the source and proof by which a believer is able to distinguish between truth and falsehood.

But it should be clear that the true meanings and mysteries of Quran are revealed in the inward of a Muslim only when they consider it the key to open the closed locks of the inward and the intellect, instead of considering it a mere combination of sacred words and letters.

 

Abdul Majid Darya

Abdul Majid Darya Badi writes in “Tasawwuf-e-Islam”, 

‘Every being in the world has an esoteric aspect and an exoteric one. So the Quran also has esoteric and exoteric aspect. Same applies to Hadith. The esoteric aspect of the Book of Allah (Quran) and the Sunnah of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) is Mysticism (Tareeqat). Mysticism is nothing but the core of Quran and the Sunnah of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh).’

The Holy Quran is a miraculous book. The more one’s innerself is enlightened, the more true meanings and aspects of Quran will reveal on his inward. How can those benefit from eternal blessings of Quran whose inward is deprived of Faqr (Sufism) and gnosis of Allah?

 

Allah says in Quran:

Allah holds many astray, and guides many aright (with Quran). And by this He leaves in error only those who are (already) disobedient. (2:27)

 

The Holy Quran is the source of guidance and Divine light. It is up to man to gain light from it or to get lost in the depths of darkness and stray from the path of guidance. 

What is Divine light according to Sufi Saints? 

Allah says in Quran,

Allah is the (Nur) light of the heavens and the earth. (24:35)

Allah Almighty has created this universe and His light covers the whole existence. It is present in the colours and fragrance of flowers, in the greenery of fields and gardens, in the glitter of the stars, in the song of the chirping birds, in the noise of the waves of the seas, in the peaks of the lofty mountains, in the rustling of the winds, in the songs, in the beautiful and charming scenes of nature, in human being who is the noblest of all creations. His shroud of light covers everything in the heavens and the earth.

But the authority and enlightenment that the perfect Fakirs have is not available to ordinary human beings. They see Divine love everywhere. According to perfect Fakirs, light means the Essence of Allah. Due to this, they attain a state of unity and Divine Oneness where there is no room for duality or multiplicity.

Ibn Arabi

Ibn Arabi states in Fusus-ul-Hikam:

‘Divine Reality manifests in each one of the creatures in one or the other form. His revelation and theophany occurs in every version and each cognitive or intuit able object. However, since all His revelations and theophanies are unintelligible in His manifestations, therefore they are hidden and secret for the intellect of people apart from the wisdom of that person who knows that the universe is the revelation and the face of the Incomparable. Such people observe Reality in all His manifestations.’ (Fusus al-Hikam, exegesis by Nuh)

Ain-ul-Faqr

Sultan Bahoo

Sultan Bahoo says:

یقین دانم درین عالم کہ لاموجود  اِلاَّ ھوُ

و لاموجود فی الکونین لامقصود اِلاَّ ھوُ

Explanation: Believe that no one exists in universe (and beyond) except Hoo (He-Allah). In fact, nothing exists in both worlds except Hoo and Hoo is the ultimate purpose (destination) of all.

He further states,

‘Only the Divine Essence (Allah) is manifest in the outer as well as the inner world and in each and everything.’ (Ain-ul-Faqr)

Al-Ghazali

Al-Ghazali states:

‘In the realm of evidence, one can find an example of the arrangement of this (light) in such a way that one can see the light of the moon falling in a hole in a house on a mirror which is placed on the wall. Its light reflects on the wall opposite to the mirror. Then this light falls on the earth so that it enlightens the earth.

 

al ghazali

Now you will know that the light which is on the earth is subject to the light which is on the wall. And that which is on the wall is subject to that which is in the mirror, and that which is in the mirror is subject to that which is in the moon, and that which is in the moon is subject to that which is in the sun; These four lights are in order. Some are perfect and superior to others and there is a special place and status for each one which is not exceeded.’ (Mishkat al-Anwar)

In reality, Divine light is ‘One’ which manifests in everything (earth and sky). This Divine light manifests in all according to requirement. In this respect, some are perfect and superior to others.

Ahmad Raza Khan

Ahmed Raza Khan Barelvi expressed same point of view in Fatawa Rizvia through an example that, a Majesty King has appeared in a mirror in which mirrors of all kinds and attributes are present. The one who has experienced the mirrors knows how the reflection of the same object in them is reflected in different ways. Some are thin, some are wide, some are beautiful and some are not so beautiful. This difference is due to their ability. Otherwise, the form which is a reflection is ‘One’ and unique. The conditions that have arisen in them are manifested. There is nothing wrong with them being inverted, ugly or dull.

The manifestations of Divine light are present in everything in the world. One can see the Divine Essence manifesting in all directions with Divine light.

Allah says in Quran,

And the east and the west (all) belong to Allah alone. (2:115)

Shah Walliullah says:

‘Oneness of attributes means the seeker beholds only the single Truth manifest in various forms and phenomena and accepts doubtlessly that all the variations are derived from and revert to the same Origin. Then he also observes the Origin manifest in different forms and recognises the Truth or Origin everywhere. It can be exemplified as, a person observes a man in totality or perfection among all the human beings. Or he finds the same kind of wax in every statue among the various statues made of wax. In short, the Reality or Truth is present in every phenomenon of existence and each form of the universe. A seeker should see this Truth hueless in everything and must not believe that a particular colour is effective in a phenomenon.’ (Hama’at)

Quotes of Sultan Bahoo from Risala Roohi Sharif:

Allah be Glorified! My physical body is just like a subtle curtain, behind which Allah is revealing thousands of strange secrets and rare facts. He Himself is the Speech as well as the Speaker, He is the Writer as well as the Book, He Himself is the Proof and the Proved, He is the Lover and the Beloved. (Risala Roohi Sharif)

Divine light means Allah Almighty. This light reflects in the inward and outward of everything. Allah is One and All-Alone and in everything there is a manifestation of His attributes in order (i.e. according to the need). Now a question arises, there must be an entity in which Allah Himself sees the exact Divine beauty of His light. A clear mirror n which He sees Himself. Sometimes be called Love, sometimes Lover and sometimes Beloved. He must be praising Himself by praising Him.

Divine Light – The Origin of Whole Creation

The Divine light in which Allah saw Himself, in whose love He created the universe, from whom He created the unique game of love and in whose love everything burns. This is Mohammadan light from the Absolute Divine Light. Allah descended to realm of First Manifestation and the light of Ahad concealed in the veil of ‘M’ of Ahmad manifested Himself as Ahmad.

He created all the souls and the worlds with this light so that all the creatures may praise and glorify the ‘One’ whom the Lord Himself calls His Beloved. The light in which all its manifestations and attributes are revealed enlightened everything. The world is bright and shining in the glory of this beloved being. The world is enlightened by His light.

Know! When the Divine light of Ahad coming out of His isolated Oneness intended to manifest Himself in multiplicity, He graced (all the worlds) with the splendid disclosure of His pure Divine beauty. Both the worlds started burning like a moth on the candle of His blazing beauty. (Risala Roohi Sharif)

Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) said:

  1. First of all Allah manifested my soul.
  2. First of all Allah manifested my light.
  3. Allah first of all manifested the Divine pen.
  4. First of all Allah manifested the wisdom.

Ghawth al-Azam Shaikh Abdul Qadir Jilani

says, all these refer to only one point and that is the Mohammadan Reality which is entitled as Divine light because he is pure of the darkness of satanic attributes, as Allah says about him,

There has indeed come to you a light from Allah (Prophet Mohammad pbuh) and an enlightening Book (the Quran). (5:15)

 

Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) says:

I am from the light of Allah and all the true believers are from my light

Allah says in Quran:

Allah is the light of the heavens and the earth. The likeness of His Light (which is glowing in the world in the form of Mohammadan Light) is as niche-like (sacred breast) wherein is glowing the lamp (of Prophethood), the lamp contained in a crystal globe (the radiant inward of Prophet Mohammad pbuh). This globe is (as dazzingly bright owing to reflection of Allah’s light) as a glittering star. (24:35)

 

The exegesis of this verse has been described in ‘Mirat-ul-Arifeen’ (Translated and explained by Mrs Ambreen Moghees) as,

‘This verse is evidence of the spreading of Divine light (of Allah) in every creation of the world through the light and inward of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh). ‘Misbah’ means the lamp of Mohammadan light (Nur-e-Mohammad pbuh) which is the source of enlightenment of all worlds.

 

This lamp is in the glass chandelier of ‘Zajaja’. Zajaja is the inward of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh). Spreading from the lamp, the light took the form of a candle or inward. It is a journey of light from comprehension to detail. This lantern is placed in a niche. The light is coming out of the candle and spreading in the niche. The niche is the Throne and the Chair where the light spread further and it got a brief description. Then this light spread further. After the creation of the heavens and the earth it spread to the earth and the heavens and to all the creations.’

 

Sultan Bahoo says,

The Mohammadan light manifested from the light of Allah and from the Mohammadan light, the entire creation came into being. Hence the origin of man is Divine light and when on the basis of his virtues, his innerself, inward and soul turn to light, he becomes the Universal Divine Man. (Aqal-e-Baydar)

Conclusion:

The eternal light for the union of which our soul is restless. The light which we are searching, the light of enlightenment. This light is the real light of an eye and the real light of an intellect which in fact enlightens the inward. The same light which is termed as Divine light or Mohammadan light (Nur-e-Mohammad pbuh). This Divine light is the source of enlightenment of inward, purification of innerself and hence Divine vision and gnosis of Allah Almighty.

 

Sultan-ul-Ashqieen Sultan Mohammad Najib-ur-Rehman

It is our good fortune that spiritual vicergerent of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) and bearer of Divine Trust in present era Sultan-ul-Ashiqeen Sultan Mohammad Najib-ur-Rehman is spreading the Divine light and inviting mankind towards Divine vision. All seekers of Allah are openly and cordially invited to pledge allegiance to Sultan-ul-Ashiqeen and begin their inward journey. Whosoever wishes to gain blessings of Mohammadan light, the door is open otherwise Allah is indifferent.

 

Reference Book:

  • Sufism-The Soul of Islam

 

This blog is an English translation of the Urdu article حقیقتِ  نور penned by Mrs Fatima Burhan and published in May 2022 edition of the Mahnama Sultan-ul-Faqr Magazine, Lahore. Dr Mohammad Waseem Akram has translated this in English.

nur, sultan ul ashiqeen

𝗤𝘂𝗲𝘀𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻𝘀

 

What is the Divine reality of Nur (light)?

Nur means Allah Almighty. This Nur (Divine light) which is actually the Mohammadan light (Nur-e-Mohammad pbuh) is the source of enlightenment of inward, Divine vision and gnosis of Allah Almighty.

 

What is Mohammadan light?

The Divine light in which Allah saw Himself, in whose love He created the universe, from whom He created the unique game of love and in whose love everything burns. This is Mohammadan light from the Absolute Divine Light. Allah descended to realm of First Manifestation and the light of Ahad concealed in the veil of ‘M’ of Ahmad manifested Himself as Ahmad.

He created all the souls and the worlds with this light so that all the creatures may praise and glorify the ‘One’ whom the Lord Himself calls His Beloved.

 

How one can reach the reality of Divine light?

To reach the reality of Divine light, one must search for the perfect spiritual guide of the era. The spiritual vicegerent of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) and the bearer of Divine Trust in present era Sultan-ul-Ashiqeen Sultan Mohammad Najib-ur-Rehman is spreading the Divine light and inviting mankind towards Divine vision. All seekers of Allah are openly and cordially invited to pledge allegiance to Sultan-ul-Ashiqeen and begin their inward journey. Whosoever wishes to gain blessings of Mohammadan light, the door is open otherwise Allah is indifferent.

 

Who is the perfect spiritual guide and the Universal Divine Man in this era?

Sultan-ul-Ashiqeen Sultan Mohammad Najib-ur-Rehman is the 31st perfect spiritual guide of Sarwari Qadri order and the Universal Divine Man of the era.

25 thoughts on “The Divine Reality of Nur (Light)”

  1. Iqbal says,

    دلِ بینا بھی کر خدا سے طلب

    آنکھ کا نور دل کا نور نہیں

    Explanation: Pray for an enlivened soul as it witnesses Allah’s grandeur from the light (of Ism-e-Azam Ism-e-Allah Zaat). The enlightenment of inward eyes shows what the physical eyes cannot see. (Bal-e-Jibril)

  2. Ashiq e Mustafa

    Allah says in Quran:

    Allah is the Guardian of the believers. He brings them out of (all kinds of) darkness and takes them towards the Nur ( light.)’ (2: 257)

  3. Allah says in Quran:

    So, believe in Allah and His Messenger (pbuh) and that Light which We have sent down. And Allah is Well Aware of the deeds that you do. (64:9) 

  4. گزر جا عقل سے آگے کہ یہ نور

    چراغِ راہ ہے منزل نہیں ہے

    Very informative article

  5. Abdul Haseeb Sarfraz

    It is our good fortune that spiritual vicergerent of Prophet Mohammad (pbuh) and bearer of Divine Trust in present era Sultan-ul-Ashiqeen Sultan Mohammad Najib-ur-Rehman is spreading the Divine light and inviting mankind towards Divine vision. All seekers of Allah are openly and cordially invited to pledge allegiance to Sultan-ul-Ashiqeen and begin their inward journey. Whosoever wishes to gain blessings of Mohammadan light, the door is open otherwise Allah is indifferent.

  6. Zahid Anjum Siddiqui

    Very nice article which is very much beneficial to us and all true seekers of Allah the almighty

  7. Zahid Anjum Siddiqui

    Very nice article which is very much beneficial to us and to all true seekers of Allah the almighty

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