Surrender 276


Allah, the Almighty, said:

{But no, by your Lord, they will not [truly] believe until they make you judge concerning that over which they dispute among themselves and then find within themselves no discomfort from what you have judged and submit in [full, willing] submission.} [an-Nisâ’ 4:65]

قَالَ اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ: "فَلَا وَرَبِّكَ لَا يُؤْمِنُونَ حَتَّى يُحَكِّمُوكَ فِيمَا شَجَرَ بَيْنَهُمْ ثُمَّ لَا يَجِدُوا فِي أَنْفُسِهِمْ حَرَجًا مِمَّا قَضَيْتَ وَيُسَلِّمُوا تَسْلِيمًا"

Tasleem (surrender) has the same flaws of tafweeḍ (delegation) and tawakkul (reliance).277 It is of the highest levels of the path of the common people.278
It is of three levels:

وَفِي التَّسْلِيمِ وَالثِّقَةِ وَالتَّفْوِيضِ مَا فِي التَّوَكُّلِ مِنَ الْعِلَلِ. وَهُوَ مِنْ أَعْلَى دَرَجَاتِ سُبُلِ الْعَامَّةِ.
وَهُوَ عَلَى ثَلَاثِ دَرَجَاتٍ:

The first level is:

  1. renunciation of all preconceived conjectures that clutter the mind concerning the unseen279

  2. submission to the decrees that are counter to logical presumptions concerning the change of states and division of shares280

  3. engaging conditions and states that are frightening to the seeker281

الدَّرَجَةُ الْأُولَى:

  1. تَسْلِيمُ مَا يُزَاحِمُ الْعُقُولَ مِمَّا سَبَقَ عَلَى الْأَوْهَامِ مِنَ الْغَيْبِ

  2. وَالْإِذْعَانُ لِمَا يُغَالِبُ الْقِيَاسَ مِنْ سَيْرِ الدُّوَلِ وَالْقِسَمِ

  3. وَالْإِجَابَةِ لِمَا يُفْزِعُ الْمُرِيدَ مِنْ رُكُوبِ الْأَحْوَالِ

The second level:

  1. deferring knowledge to (one’s spiritual) state 282

  2. deferring premeditated goals to disclosures283

  3. deferring forms to realities284

الدَّرَجَةُ الثَّانِيَةُ:

  1. تَسْلِيمُ الْعِلْمِ إِلَى الْحَالِ

  2. وَالْقَصْدُ إِلَى الْكَشْفِ

  3. وَالرَّسْمِ إِلَى الْحَقِيقَةِ

The third level:

  1. giving up all others for the True One

  2. while being clear of seeing the (act of) surrender285

  3. by beholding the True One’s handing you over to Himself286

الدَّرَجَةُ الثَّالِثَةُ:

  1. تَسْلِيمُ مَا دُونُ الْحَقِّ إِلَى الْحَقِّ

  2. مَعَ السَّلَامَةِ مِنْ رُؤْيَةِ التَّسْلِيمِ

  3. بِمُعَايَنَةِ تَسْلِيمِ الْحَقِّ إِيَّاكَ إِلَيْهِ

276 Pertinent also are the following terms: submit, give up, give in, hand over, defer, renounce.
277 Your very thought that you own or possess anything to be delegated or surrendered is the main flaw.
278 Imam Ibn al-Qayyim explains in Madârij how true tasleem is of the highest stations of the elite. It is possible that tasleem, as perceived by the masses, is what Imam al-Harawi considers the elite to have transcended beyond. It is possible also that Imam al-Harawi perceives all stations short of fanâ’ (self-annihilation) to be short of the ultimate peak.
279 When your preconceived conjectures about the unseen clutter your mind and prevent the Revelation from reforming it.
280 This one is about accepting His decrees and not contesting or even wondering about them. When you see nations rise and fall; when you see the changes in your conditions and the conditions of those around you; when you see the shares of provisions, power, statuses (including spiritual states) being divided in a way you cannot comprehend, defer to His wisdom.
281 The Companions responded to Allah’s command and marched to confront the Romans with an army of three thousand soldiers scarcely resourced compared to their enemies. If you realize that you must quit your job or leave your homeland, and the Shayṭân intimidates you with the prospects of poverty or hardship, remember that your surrender to Allah can never lead to your destruction or ruin. This also may mean moving from one spiritual state to another, as demanded by Allah.
282 Imam Ibn al-Qayyim cautions in Madârij that the sheikh is deemed above what some may wrongly understand from this statement. He would never have meant to allow one’s state to be a judge over the knowledge of the Revelation. However, he means that there is something beyond knowledge, which is acting on it. There is also the need to contextualize that knowledge and apply it correctly. Letting the knowledge go through an insightful heart is necessary for its proper application.
283 If you were in the middle of your way and were shown a different path, take it if you are comfortable with the disclosure, and (obviously) if it does not contradict the Revelation. Also, disclosure may show you the flaws of your intentions and premeditated goals.
284 Our shapes, attire, positions, rankings, etc. are forms. The work of the interior determines the value of our actions and our real rankings. This may also mean that one beholding the truth/True One will not see any forms or constructs before it/Him.
285 Because seeing your tasleem means being distracted by your own action from beholding His.
286 After all, what can you do without Him? What would you be without Him? Nothing!

Manâzil as-Sâirin


Shaykhul-Islam Abu Isma‘il Abdullah ibn Muhammad al-Ansari al-Harawi (396-481H)

Translation and Footnotes


Hatem al-Haj