Allah, the Almighty, said:

{O reassured soul} [al-Fajr 89:27]

قَالَ اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ: "يَا أَيَّتُهَا النَّفْسُ الْمُطْمَئِنَّةُ"

Ṭuma’neenah is a quiescence that is buttressed by valid security,482 which is similar in certainty to the witness of the eye. There are two differences between it and sakeenah (tranquility):
The first: sakeenah is an impetus that causes, at times, the abatement of the [intensity of the] awe.483 However, ṭuma’neenah is the quiescence of security in the oasis of comforting intimacy (uns).484
The second: sakeenah is a description that may simply be had at times, whereas ṭuma’neenah never separates from its people.
It is of three levels:

الطُّمَأْنِينَةُ: سُكُونٌ يُقَوِّيهِ أَمْنٌ صَحِيحٌ، شَبِيهٌ بِالْعِيَانِ. وَبَيْنَهَا وَبَيْنَ السَّكِينَةِ فَرْقَانِ:
أَحَدُهُمَا: أَنَّ السَّكِينَةَ صَوْلَةٌ تُورِثُ خُمُودَ الْهَيْبَةِ أَحْيَانًا. وَالطُّمَأْنِينَةُ سُكُونُ أَمْنٍ فِي اسْتِرَاحَةِ أُنْسٍ.
وَالثَّانِي: أَنَّ السَّكِينَةَ تَكُونُ نَعْتًا. وَتَكُونُ حِينًا بَعْدَ حِينٍ، وَالطُّمَأْنِينَةُ لَا تُفَارِقُ صَاحِبَهَا.
وهيَ عَلَى ثَلَاثِ دَرَجَاتٍ.

The first level is the serenity of the heart in the remembrance of Allah. It is the serenity found by:

  1. the fearful in hope

  2. the aggravated in (the resignation to) destiny

  3. the afflicted in (the expectation of) reward

الدَّرَجَةُ الْأُولَى طُمَأْنِينَةُ الْقَلْبِ بِذِكْرِ اللَّهِ. وَهِيَ طُمَأْنِينَةُ:

  1. الْخَائِفِ إِلَى الرَّجَاءِ

  2. وَالضَّجِرِ إِلَى الْحُكْمِ

  3. وَالْمُبْتَلَى إِلَى الْمَثُوبَةِ

The second level is the serenity of the soul:

  1. in the disclosure485 while traveling

  2. in the promise while yearning486

  3. in the union while in tafriqah (dispersion)487

والدَّرَجَةُ الثَّانِيَةُ طُمَأْنِينَةُ الرُّوحِ:

  1. فِي الْقَصْدِ إِلَى الْكَشْفِ

  2. وَفِي الشَّوْقِ إِلَى الْعِدَةِ

  3. وَفِي التَّفْرِقَةِ إِلَى الْجَمْعِ

The third level:

  1. the serenity in the (Divine) gentleness while beholding the (Divine) presence488

  2. the serenity in (the station of) baqâ’ (subsistence) while in [the state of] union489

  3. the serenity in the light of pre-eternity while
    in one’s station490

والدَّرَجَةُ الثَّالِثَةُ:

  1. طُمَأْنِينَةُ شُهُودِ الْحَضْرَةِ إِلَى اللُّطْفِ

  2. وَطُمَأْنِينَةُ الْجَمْعِ إِلَى الْبَقَاءِ

  3. وَطُمَأْنِينَةُ الْمَقَامِ إِلَى نُورِ الْأَزَلِ

482 Not the fake security that results from heedlessness, wishful thinking, and delusions.
483 The awe that comes with reflection on the attributes of might and rigor.
484 The uns that comes in the state of togetherness with the True One, reflecting on His attributes of mercy and beauty and on the Divine essence (dhât).
485 Disclosures show the details of the way and the destination, giving assurance to the traveler.
486 While yearning for His pleasure, you find comfort in His promise to the good doers.
487 Your occupations in the dunyâ cause tafriqah (dispersion, distraction, discomposure), and your togetherness with Allah, during your devotional retreats (or even during your occupation), will provide your spirit with comfort and composure.
488 While your heart is beholding the Divine, the realization of His gentleness will keep it at ease.
489 Your baqâ (subsistence by Allah, with Him, and for Him) will result from your togetherness with Him and your heart will find stability in that loftiest station.
490 The light of pre-eternity removes every darkness and puts all things in perspective, realizing the oneness of the origin.

Manâzil as-Sâirin


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

Translation and Footnotes


Hatem al-Haj