Quotes by Martin Lings

"- The Azan story -

The five daily ritual prayers were regularly performed in congregation, and when the time for each prayer came the people would assemble at the site where the Mosque was being built. Everyone judged of the time by the position of the sun in the sky, or by the first signs of its light on the eastern horizon or by the dimming of its glow in the west after sunset; but opinions could differ, and the Prophet felt the need for a means of summoning the people to prayer when the right time had come. At first he thought of appointing a man to blow a horn like that of the Jews, but later he decided on a wooden clapper, ndqiis, such as the Oriental Christians used at that time, and two pieces of wood were fashioned together for that purpose. But they were never destined to be used; for one night a man of Khazraj, 'Abd Allah ibn Zayd, who had been at the Second 'Aqabah, had a dream whieh the next day he recounted to the Prophet: "There passed by me a man wearing two green garments and he carried in his hand a ndqiis, so I said unto him: "0 slave of God, wilt thou sell me that naqusi" "What wilt thou do with it?" he said. "We will summon the people to prayer with it," I answered. "Shall I not show thee a better way?" he said. "What way is that?" I asked, and he answered: "That thou shouldst say: God is most Great, Alldhu Akbar." The man in green repeated this magnification four times, then each of the following twice: I testify that there is no god but God; I testify that Muhammad is the messenger of God; come unto the prayer; come unto salvation; God is most Great; and then once again there is no god but God.
The Prophet said that this was a true vision, and he told him to go to Bilal, who had an excellent voice, and teach him the words exactly as he had heard them in his sleep. The highest house in the neighbourhood of the Mosque belonged to a woman of the clan of Najjar, and Bilal would come there before every dawn and would sit on the roof waiting for the daybreak. When he saw the first faint light in the east he would stretch out his arms and say in supplication: "0 God I praise Thee, and I ask Thy Help for Quraysh, that they may accept Thy religion." Then he would stand and utter the call to prayer."
34 likes

"In after-years he would tell of an incident that took place at one of their encampments: "We were with the Prophet when a Companion brought in a fledgling that he had caught, and one of the parent birds came and threw itself into the hands of him who had taken its young. I saw men's faces full of wonderment, and the Prophet said: 'Do ye wonder at this bird? Ye have taken its young, and it hath thrown itself down in merciful tenderness unto its young. Yet I swear by God, Your Lord is more merciful unto you than is this bird unto its fledgling. And he told the man to put back the young bird where he had found it.

He also said: "God hath a hundred mercies,and one of them hath He sent down amongst jinn and men and cattle and beasts of prey. Thereby they are kind and merciful unto one another, and thereby the wild creature inclineth in tenderness unto her offspring. And ninety-nine mercies hath God reserved unto Himself, that therewith He may show mercy unto His slaves on the day of the Resurrection."
10 likes

"Mengenai kebutaan hati dan cara penyembuhannya, Nabi berkata, “segala sesuatu yang berkarat ada pengkilapnya, dan pengkilap hati adalah mengingat Allah."
9 likes

"Hadist riwayat Abu Bakar menyatakan bahwa Nabi bersabda, “Allah mengangkat derajatmu bukan melalui banyaknya salat dan berpuasa, namun berdasarkan kebaikan hatimu."
8 likes

"whereas the Arabs were in favour of the man but against the message, the Jews were in favour of the message but against the man. For how could God send a Prophet who was not one of the chosen people? None the less, when the pilgrims brought news of the Prophet to Yathrib, the Jews were interested despite themselves and eagerly questioned them for more details; and when the Arabs of the oasis sensed this eagerness, and when they saw how the monotheistic nature of the message increased the interest of the rabbis tenfold, they could not fail to be impressed, as were the bearers of the tidings themselves."
8 likes

Advertisement

Books by Martin Lings

  • What is Sufism?
  • 281 ratings
  • December 1st 1999 by Islamic Texts Society

    (first published 1975)

You May Also Like

Martin Lings
  • Martin Lings

  • Date of birth: January 24, 1909
  • Died: May 12, 2005
  • Born: in Burnage, Manchester , The United Kingdom.

  • Description: Martin Lings was an English writer and scholar, a student and follower of Frithjof Schuon, and Shakespearean scholar. He is best known as the author of a very popular and positively reviewed biography, Muhammad: His Life Based on the Earliest Sources, first published in 1983 and still in print.

    Lings was born in Burnage, Manchester in 1909 to a Protestant family. The young Lings gained an introduction to travelling at a young age, spending significant time in the United States due to his father's employment.

    Lings attended Clifton College and went on to Magdalen College, Oxford (BA (Oxon) English Language and Literature). At Magdalen he was a student of C. S. Lewis, who would become a close friend of his. After graduating from Oxford Lings went to Vytautas Magnus University, in Lithuania, where he taught Anglo-Saxon and Middle English.

    For Lings himself, however, the most important event that occurred while he was at Oxford was his discovery of the writings of the René Guénon, a French metaphysician and Muslim convert and those of Frithjof Schuon, a German spiritual authority, metaphysician and Perennialist. In 1938 Lings went to Basle to make Schuon's acquaintance and he remained Frithjof Schuon's disciple and expositor for the rest of his life.

    In 1939 Lings went to Cairo, Egypt in order to visit a friend of his who was an assistant of René Guénon. Not long after arriving in Cairo, his friend died and Lings began studying and learned Arabic.

    Cairo became his home for over a decade; he became an English teacher at the University of Cairo and produced Shakespeare plays annually. Lings married Lesley Smalley in 1944 and lived with her in a village near the pyramids. Despite having settled comfortably in Egypt, Lings was forced to leave in 1952 after anti-British disturbances.

    Upon returning to the United Kingdom he continued his education, earning a BA in Arabic and a PhD from the School of Oriental and African Studies (University of London). His doctoral thesis became a well-received book on Algerian Sufi Ahmad al-Alawi (see Sufi studies). After completing his doctorate, Lings worked at the British Museum and later British Library, overseeing eastern manuscripts and other textual works, rising to the position of Keeper of Oriental Printed Books and Manuscripts 1970-73. He was also a frequent contributor to the journal, Studies in Comparative Religion.

    A writer throughout this period, Lings' output increased in the last quarter of his life. While his thesis work on Ahmad al-Alawi had been well-regarded, his most famous work was a biography of Muhammad, written in 1983, which earned him acclaim in the Muslim world and prizes from the governments of Pakistan and Egypt. His work was hailed as the "best biography of the prophet in English" at the National Seerat Conference in Islamabad.[2] He also continued travelling extensively, although he made his home in Kent. He died in 2005.

    In addition to his writings on Sufism, Lings was a Shakespeare scholar. His contribution to Shakespeare scholarship was to point out the deeper esoteric meanings found in Shakespeare's plays, and the spirituality of Shakespeare himself. More recent editions of Lings's books on Shakespeare include a Foreword by HRH The Prince of Wales. Just before his death he gave an interview on this topic, which was posthumously made into the film Shakespeare's Spirituality: A Perspective. An Interview With Dr. Martin Lings.

Advertisement

Advertisement

Topics

Advertisement