Shaykh Yusuf da Costa: Seclusion and the silent dhikr

When one is a student, one knows what loneliness is.  While the rest of the world is busy with all kinds of activities, the student sits with his books.  This may last considerable lengths of time as he strives, through his studies, to obtain certain qualifications in one or other field.  This is the reason why most students are “loners”.  We have to understand that they can achieve what they do only by going through very long periods of being in isolation, and being on their own; only with their books.  Even at the post-graduate level, students spend long periods of time doing research on their own, and without company.  I have always said that all of us who have been students have the skills, very anti-social of course, to do things in isolation.  If we can transfer these skills to our religious quests or striving for spiritual stations, then

Read More »

Shaykh Yusuf da Costa: Being silent

When we consider our relationship with all other human beings, with all Muslims, with all those in Tariqah, and with our shaykh and other murids in the Naqshbandi Tariqah, what do we see?  It is quite clear that our importance as human beings, as Muslims, as those in Tariqah, and in the Naqshbandi Tariqah, is of very little significance if we look at numbers.  There is no doubt that the importance of any individual, and here I am referring to us, lies primarily in his relationship with his Lord and the final Messenger of that Lord.  This relationship is expressed primarily according to the station that our Lord has granted us.  Of course, the station depends, amongst other things, on the extent to which we have become obedient servants to our Lord within the overall structure of Islam. We are mentioning all of these to you for us to understand

Read More »

Shaykh Yusuf da Costa: Hearts which only our Lord knows

I have always wondered why, on the Day of Judgment, the poor people will enter Paradise years before those who are well off in the Dunya.  I could understand that their poverty on the Dunya would be an importance mitigating factor with regard to their judgment.  But we are going to have large numbers of very poor people who never believed.  So, it cannot only be poverty.  There must be at least another factor involved. I have had the good fortune to associate with some extremely poor people especially from Blikkiesdorp and have come to learn, by listening to them, how they take their poverty in its stride, because of their faith in their Lord.  Sometimes, in fact, many times, I am just taken aback by the extreme to which they depend on their Lord to survive their poverty and also to eventually get out of Blikkiesdorp.  I have never

Read More »

Shaykh Yusuf da Costa: Spiritual blessings

I am always amazed at how the blessings of Allah Almighty are distributed amongst people.  Here I am not referring to the normal distribution of worldly goods to people, but I am referring to those very special blessings which are given to people as a consequence of their spiritual stations.  Worldly goods are given to all people irrespective of their beliefs or non-beliefs.  Allah (ﷻ) grants them health and whatever else of this planet.  Spiritual blessings are something very special granted by our Lord to some of His very special servants. The other day a lady from Valhalla Park described to me how her son told her on New Year’s Eve that he was going out to enjoy himself into the New Year.  After he had left, she supplicated to our Lord and asked Him to return her son to their home and to stop him from participating in the

Read More »

Shaykh Yusuf da Costa: The present state of the Muslims

Sometimes when I look at the state of the Muslims, here and overseas, I feel despondent.  This is because of the extent to which we have in fact drifted from the teachings of Islam.  I heard somewhere that Nabi Muhammad (ﷺ) told the Sahabah that for them to enter Paradise, they have to adhere to 90% of Islam; but there will come a time in human history when it would be enough to adhere to 10% of Islam to enter Paradise.  When we look around today at the religious state of the Muslims, again here and elsewhere, one just feels appalled by the extent of the religious degeneration that one sees around one.  The Muslim community in South Africa is going in the same direction as the other communities in this country.  There is very little difference in the social dysfunctional statistics of the Muslim community and those of other

Read More »

Shaykh Yusuf da Costa: Remember Me, I remember you (ii: 152)

In a very well known verse in the Qur’an, Allah Almighty says: فَأذْكُرُوْنِى أَذْكُرْكُمْ Remember Me, I remember you (ii: 152). This verse is quoted quite frequently by scholars when they deal with the relationship between Allah Almighty and His servants.  This relationship has to do with His remembrance.  Of course, the word “remembrance”, covers the whole gambit of religious observations that we perform, and in many cases, it also refers to the general adherence that we as servants have to have to the Divine Law.  This means that the word “remembrance” has a very broad meaning and to confine it to the recital of litanies is not very accurate.  This does not mean, of course, that the recital of litanies is not the foundation stone of remembrance in all the different religious observances.  There is no doubt, and a number of scholars have written on this matter, that major

Read More »

Shaykh Yusuf da Costa: The open door

Many of us are only a few steps away from moving ahead into the Akhirah.  Some of us are looking ahead with great expectation and hope that our Lord would honour us when we arrive.  But most of us are seriously worried about ourselves and about our destinations, because we know that the destinations are definitely there.  The reason for our entering into Tariqah is directly linked with these destinations.  We are on this path because Allah Almighty has placed in our hearts a desire for His Satisfaction; a desire which if achieved would mean that we would be honoured in the Hereafter.  Any other reason for entering into Tariqah is just playing games. Tariqah has to do, very essentially, with the sciences of the Hereafter; the understanding of those branches of knowledge that will grant to us the bliss in the Hereafter.  It is not only the understanding of

Read More »

Shaykh Yusuf da Costa: How we were and now, how we are

During the first few generations after the demise of Nabi Muhammad (ﷺ), there was a major blossoming of different branches of knowledge.  This blossoming was accompanied by a massive development of spirituality.  It is difficult to say whether at any other time in human history there was such an explosion of knowledge, especially when such an explosion was accompanied by highly specialised achievements in spirituality.  Great scholars, of both genders, were in many cases intensely pious people.  It appears from one’s understanding of history that this bringing together of intellectual and spiritual achievements, if not unique to Islam, then at least there was a large scale development of this during Islam. If one just considers of an individual like Imam Ghazali, for example, then one can understand what is being written about.  He was perhaps one of the greatest thinkers in Islam.  It is for this reason that he is

Read More »

Shaykh Yusuf da Costa: Don’t let our egos be our guides

We need not tell you this, but you know, that out shaykh, under all circumstances, is Mawlana Shayklh Nazim al-Haqqani from Cyprus.  We have all pledged on his hand; either directly, or indirectly through me.  When we pledged it was a pledge to Allah Almighty with regard to our new orientation in Islam.  The pledge might not have looked significant but it involves the turning of one’s heart by one’s Lord, to one’s Lord.  In the process, we took a major step away from our activities that we were involved in, towards activities that have to do with the Hereafter.  This is what it was supposed to mean, and we are sure that in many cases it means just that.  We have seen the dramatic changes in some of you.  I have seen how some of you have acquired the ability to listen and to obey, as a consequence of

Read More »

Shaykh Yusuf da Costa: “Don’t look for us in the graveyards …”

On one of the salah time tables I saw a remarkable statement by Imam Rumi. He said: “When we die, don’t look for us in the graveyards but look for us in the hearts of those people whose lives we have touched.” Allah Almighty has given each one of us different skills and graces, which, when properly applied, can be used to help others who are not so fortunate to have such skills and graces. Many of us, as we live on this planet, are able to leave footprints behind because of what we do for others. Those footprints are never erased, and even when we are not here anymore, those footprints continue to be planted for us. This is Allah’s (ﷻ) work. Many years ago, while I was principal in Steenberg, I was asked to deliver a speech on behalf of another principal who was leaving the profession. In

Read More »

Recent Posts

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Subscribe to our newsletter for the latest updates, exclusive offers, and valuable insights delivered to your inbox! Don’t miss out – join our community today!

Subscription Form
Scroll to Top