I had told to a person who had been dervish for 40 years saying 

“please ask me if you have any question!”

 He asked this as a question

“how do we need to hold the tasbih [2] while
pulling the beads, would it be better to hold it straight
as it might help to pass by the Sirat (straight path/bridge) easily.  ”

He asked
many questions of that kind.
I said 


“What does Sirat have to do with tasbih (e.g Rosary beeds)?

If you wish, You hold it upward,
If you wish, You hold it downward. None of these

holdings will give you any benefit or harm.You , look at your self first, hold your self straight (right). That is
enough. Sirat has something to do with the meaning of Tasbih not the image of it.
Tasbih means making ‘Tanzih[3]’, ‘Tawhid(uniting) [4]’ ; Can you do that?”

Translated by Barbaros Sert on 19.09.07 from “Sohbetler by Kenan Rifai”




Kenan Rifai is a Turkish Mystic who lived between “1867-1950”. His teachings and autobigoraphy can be found on following websites:


[1] Zaheer: The exterior, outer, surface or apparent meanings of things. In Tasawwuf , ALLAH is Az-Zaheer so what is perceived by our five senses are the apparent meanings of the manifested divine names and attributes of ALLAH(GOD). If one can look at the things and can not see these meanings from the things , this means that person is not witnessing the inner meanings of His attributes but he is getting stuck at the outer appearance of the meanings of His divine names and attributes. That sort of person is regarded to be doing a blind imitation.

[2] Tasbih: Tasbih is to declare that Allah is pure of any blemishes in His Essence(Dhat), Qualities/Attributes(Siffat) and Works(Af’al. Tasbih is a form of dhikr that involves the repetitive utterances of short sentences glorifying God, in Islam. The term can also be used loosely to refer to any kind of dhikr. To keep track of counting either the phalanges of the right hand or a misbaha is used. The tasbih is similar to the rosary in Christian religion.

[3] Tanzih: Tanzih is an Islamic religious concept meaning transcendence. In Islamic theology, two opposite terms are attributed to Allah: tanzih and tashbih. The latter means ‘nearness, closeness, accessibility’.

However, the fuller meaning of tanzih is ‘declaring incomparibility’, i.e. affirming Allah’s transcendent distance from humanity. This concept is eternally juxtaposed with Allah’s tashbih (closeness, or ‘affirming similarity’).

The literal meaning of the word is “to declare something pure and free of something else”. This definition affirms that Allah cannot be likened to anything: “Nothing is like Him.” (Sura 42:11) and reinforces the fundamental, underlying Islamic belief in tawhid.

[4] Uniting(Tawhid): Tawhid (Arabic: tawhīd “doctrine of Oneness [of God ]”; also transliterated Tawheed and Tauheed) is the concept of monotheism in Islam. It holds God (Arabic: Allah) is one (wahid) and unique (ahad).

The Qur’an asserts the existence of a single and absolute truth that transcends the world; a unique and indivisible being, who is independent of the entire creation. The indivisibility of God implies the indivisibility of God’s sovereignty which, in turn, leads to the concept of a just, moral and coherent universe, rather than an existential and moral chaos. Similarly, the Qur’an rejects such ideas as the duality of God arguing that both good and evil generate from God’s creative act and asserting that the evil forces have no power to create anything. The Qur’an also rejects the concept of Trinity as prevalent in Christianity. God in Islam is a universal god, rather than a local, tribal or parochial one — is an absolute, who integrates all affirmative values and brooks no evil.

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