Poetry:  Opportunities to Efface My Fear

Opportunities to Efface My Fear

by Noor-Malika Chishti

In facing fear we should remind ourselves
that even Prophets cannot face the Holy Fear1
of standing before
the One who causes mountains to crumble2.
In the silence of night,
                                              in the depths of Remembrance
            my focus was shattered by a glimpse that I did not exist,
                                                                        ... who was saying lâ ilâha illâ allâhu3?
      A primal fear created by relying on my own deeds4
                closed the door of awareness as a veil of protection.
                                                But, Love of His Beauty is a strong draw
              and courage to return is inspired and encouraged by
        a message left by one who knew I must
      think of the Mercy and Love of my Lord,
give thanks for His Grace
and come without fear.5
Did He not promise
that He will Remember me
        if I Remember Him6?
                              And, where else should I go but to the heart
                                for God in His Mercy let us know that is where He can be found7.
        Early morning is reliable in bringing opportunities to efface my fear
              as I strive to create a soul at peace.8
                I never know when again I might have a chance to not exist and
                          pray my breath is steady as I release what is not god
                                            into the only One that exists.


1.  “O mankind, be fearful of your Lord who created you from a single self, and created its mate from it, and disseminated many men and women from the two of them.” (4:1)    and   Only those with knowledge fear Allah [Fatir:28]  “Fear God as He should be feared, and die not except in a state of Islam.” (Quran 3:102)

2   When Moses came to the place appointed by Us, and his Lord addressed him, He said: “O my Lord! show (Thyself) to me, that I may look upon thee.” Allah said: “By no means canst thou see Me (direct); But look upon the mount; if it abide in its place, then shalt thou see Me.” When his Lord manifested His glory on the Mount, He made it as dust. Moses fell down in a swoon. When he recovered his senses.  “Verily, those who say, ‘Our Rabb is Allah (Alone),’ and then they stand firm, on them the angels will descend (at the time of their death) saying, ‘Fear not, nor grieve! But receive the glad tidings of Jannah which you have been promised! [7.143]

3 The Arabic phrase lâ ilâha illâ allâh is one of major pillars of Islam and means, “there is no reality but the only Reality.”

4 One of the signs of relying on one’s own deeds is the loss of hope when a downfall occurs. from The Book of Wisdom by Ibn ‘Ata’ Illah

5 Paraphrase from Imam al Gazali’s last words.

6   Then do ye remember Me; I will remember you. Be grateful to Me, and reject not Faith. [2.152]

7 “The heavens and the earth cannot contain Me; only the heart of my humble and faithful servant is expansive enough to contain Me.” [Hadith Qudsi]

8 Nafs-i-mutma’inna:  But unto the righteous God will say, “O thou human being that hast attained to inner peace! [89:27]


© Noor-Malika Chishti, December 2010