Al-Aziz- The Mighty One,
a revealed Name of Allah
and a spiritual name of
Shaykh Muzaffer al-Jerrahi
The original Shaykh of Islam is, of course, the noble Prophet Muhammad, may peace be upon him. Communities of true lovers ever since have gathered around the shaykhs, or mature mystic guides, who are rightly called inheritors of the wealth of the Prophet. The shaykh is not a personality but a spiritual principle, one in essence, dazzlingly diverse in manifestation.
- Nur al-Jerrahi, Atom; from the introduction to “Countenance and Heart of the Shaykh”
The shaykh, representing all of her or his enlightened predecessors, often guides subtly and through dreams, without necessarily using common speech or social contact. The relation of shaykh and dervish is solely spiritual. It is not a personal relationship in the ordinary sense. Nor is the shaykh in control of the psyche or the personal life of the dervish, or vice-versa. The relation of shaykh and dervish is a sacred relationship guiding the dervish to their own illumined heart by advancing through the seven levels of the self. The dervish develops profound spiritual trust toward the shaykh, and the shaykh prays for the dervish to become a mature and responsible human being.
The dervish advances on the spiritual path through service to the shaykh, whether this service be visible or invisible. Outwardly we are serving the shaykh, inwardly we are serving Allah Most High. Love and respect to the shaykh, dhikr and prayer, are essential forms of service. Each offering dedicated to the dervish community is also service to the shaykh. Every action and intention for the sake of Truth is service.