Before I explain about this video which I made, this point must be shared.
Gifts from the tradition
It’s interesting to note that the young scholar sought permission from the hosts and later wrote a poem as a gift to them. I contrast this with our lives today where we occupy ourselves with purchasing gifts that are often neither in need nor functionally beneficial.
Or more accurately the problem being, feeding the materialistic and consumerist culture we live in, so much so that it is not seen as an issue and at times unnoticed completely. Our freedom to choose things were determined by an expectation to choose things.
Observe what is universal. Learn from those of most sincere intentions in giving and receiving – babies and old people. What matters and lasts most is time spent together.
After the spoils of the Battle of Hunain were divided out to foreign chiefs, the people of Medina complained. The Prophet (pbuh) responded, ‘are you not satisfied that other men should take away flocks and herds, while you take the Messenger of God back with you to Medina?’
Sweetness heard and felt
In 2012, Peace Meal organized a screening of the film ‘Tarim to Granada: There’s No Conqueror But God’ by Radical Middle Way. In it, Habib Omar Bin-Hafidz explained and recited a few random baits from the Rashafaat Ahl al-Kamaal by Habib Abdul Rahman Bilfaqih.
*Abdul Rahman bin Abdullah Bilfaqih (1678-1749) is 32 generations from his grandfather the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). Read about this amazing person from the bio attached in the video, especially the story of him dressing up as a farmer.
*The Rashafaat has over 300 baits divided in 19 chapters/sections. Shaykh Abdullah bin Ahmad Ba-Saudan composer and curator of the famed Hadhra Ba-Saudan, wrote a commentary of the Rashafaat called Mataali’ al-Anwaar.
Then I was intrigued to know more and over the years have gradually learned more about it as well as the composer. Recently in an address Habib Omar recited chapter 10 from memory like the back of his hand, which is about the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).
In the film two of the three times he quoted the poem, is from this very same chapter 10. The first time he quotes it, which has the translation in the subtitles, is the opening bait of the opening Chapter 1 of the Rashafaat – sending greetings to the people in Makkah.
Every Monday night, there’s Jalsa Isnain (Monday Gathering) where Habib Omar teaches the exegesis (Tafseer) of the Qur’an. Open to the public, it is attended by many students and members of the public. It is also aired on al-Erth an-Nabawi tv channel, which you can stream I think.
Initially it went weekly from mosque to mosque. Then one open space to another. When it got big, it moved to the open space next to central mosque of Tareem. When the political uprising began, and probably due to space issue to, it’s now in the school’s open courtyard.
Each week it begins with a recitation of the Qur’an by a student or guest, then another would read one to two Prophetic Traditions (Hadith) and then someone who recites poems (Munsheed) would do his thing. Sometimes others may be invited to speak briefly before Habib Omar comes on stage to begin the main tafseer section. Last Monday, this was the poem recited.
Credit: This recording you hear is chapter 10 of the Rashafaat by the munsheed Omar Aydarus Bin-Shahab, except for the last bait – as for some reason my video editing program is temperamental. The wordings are available in the video in the middle and the end. The opening frame is the poster designed by Abdul Rahman Aljunied from Peace Meal. The images were extracted from the film, copyright of Radical Middle Way and the biography is from Imams of the Valley by Amin Buxton, published by DTI (it’s available for download).