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54 Attributes of the Dervish

  1. A dervish has Faith in Allah and loves and prays to the Creator and is compassionate to His Creation.
  2. A lover believes in the last Prophet, Hazreti Mohammed Mustafa, may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him, and loves him more than anything but Allah, and respects his family, companions, followers and the ones who love him.
  3. A lover learns, knows and joyfully and happily follows God’s ordinances.
  4. A lover knows the fear of Allah and learns, knows, and avoids that which is forbidden by Him.
  5. A dervish should earn his living through right action and according to Allah’s Law, should eat lawfully, clothe himself lawfully, and stay only in lawful places.
  6. A lover does not lie, is always truthful, and advises truthfulness.
  7. A lover is generous; he gives what he has lawfully earned for Allah’s sake, and is also generous with help and advice.
  8. A dervish is patient in his faith, in his religious duties and in cases of hardship, and should advise others in patience.
  9. A lover does his prayers five times daily without fail, and whenever possible in congregation, and considers this Allah’s greatest gift.
  10. In addition to his daily prayers, he should do the voluntary devotions, the most important of which is the Tahajjud prayer, which was obligatory for the Prophet (saws).
  11. In addition to the thirty days fast of Ramadan, a dervish should fast the first, middle and last days of the Arabic months, and is advised to fast 9 days in the month of Zul Hijjah, 11 days in the month of Muharram, most of the days of Rajab, and some of the days of Sha’ban, but especially on the day of Barat which is the 15th of Sha ’ban.
  12. He must learn and follow as much as he can of the Sunnah (Traditions) of the Prophet (saws).
  13. If the dervish is well to do, he has to go to the Hajj once in his lifetime, but he also should go to Madina to visit our Master the Messenger of Allah, and to Jerusalem, Damascus and Baghdad, and he should visit the Shrines of the Saints.
  14. If he has means, he should distribute his Zakat with joy, and if he is poor, he should help less fortunate ones with his hands, his words and his time.
  15. The dervish has to be clean and pure. Not only his body and his environment, but his heart should be cleansed of arrogance, especially pride of his spiritual state, hypocrisy, envy, grudges, anger, and negativity in general. His speech has to be cleansed of gossip and blame, his sympathies from love of money and possessions, and of fame and position.
  16. The dervish cannot drink alcohol or take any other intoxicants which are forbidden by Allah. And he should also avoid all excesses and oppose his desires, and pray for help in educating the flesh.
  17. A dervish should not stay too long in the presence of his shaykh unless he is asked to do so.
  18. When he is in the presence of his shaykh, he should sit on his knees, be extremely careful of unbecoming behavior, and avoid speaking unnecessarily. He should not behave in a familiar way, and should follow proper "adab". He should consider his shaykh’s mistakes better than his own best achievements, and should attribute his development and inspirations totally to the shaykh. To act contrary to this will prevent the dervish’s advancement.
  19. A dervish should consider that when he is in the presence of the shaykh, it is as if he were in the presence of Allah, of Allah’s Messenger, of the Saints and the Saint of his order, and act accordingly. An act which may hurt his teacher not only will prevent his advancement, but, Allah protect him and us, may cause terrible misfortunes and even death.

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