‘ASHQ - عشق
Literally: A being or becoming passionately enamoured. Love. Passion.
Ecstatic love to Allah. Ilahî love. Ecstatic love towards Allah.
“Thus, since man's reality is exalted and his fitrah comprehensive, he is, by his very fitrah, needy with thousands of different sorts of needs for the innumerable Ilahî Names, each of which has many degrees. The intensified need is longing. The intensified longing is love. And intensified love is ‘ashq. As the rûh is perfected, the degrees of love unfold according to the degrees of the Names. Furthermore, since the Names are the titles and manifestations of the One of Zuljalâl, love of them will be transformed into the love of the Ilahî Essence.” The Words ( 672 )
Mawlana Jâmî, who was intoxicated with the cup of ‘ashq like his fitrah kneaded with ‘ashq, see how beautiful he has said in order to toward the faces from the multiplicity to wahdah:
يَكِى خَواهْ يَكِى خَوانْ يَكِى جُوىْ يَكِى بِينْ يَكِى دَانْ يَكِى گُوىْ (Only this line is Mawlana Jâmî's) That is,
1. Want only The One; others are not worthy of being wanted.
2. Call The One; the others do not come to succour.
3. Seek for The One; the others are not worthy.
4. See The One; the others are not seen all the time; they hide in the veil of fading.
5. Know The One; any other knowledge, which does not assist His ma’rifat, is without benefit.
6. Say The One; words not belonging to Him may be considered meaningless and useless.
نَعَمْ صَدَقْتَ اَىْ جَامِى ٭ هُوَ الْمَطْلُوبُ ٭ هُوَ الْمَحْبُوبُ ٭ هُوَ الْمَقْصُودُ ٭ هُوَ الْمَعْبُودُ
Yes, Jâmî, you said so right. The true beloved (mahbûb), the true desired one (matlûb), the true object (maqsûd), the true ma’bûd is He alone.
The Second Station of the Seventeenth Word
I see that the most fortunate person in the life of this world is one who accepts the world as a military guest-house and displays idh‘ân in that way and acts accordingly. And through that acceptance, he can swiftly gain the rank of acceptance and pleasure of Allah, which is the greatest rank. He does not give the price of the perpetual diamond to a thing possessing the value of a piece of glass that will break; he passes his life with istiqâmah and pleasure. Yes, the matters belonging to the world are a piece of glass doomed to be broken, while the eternal matters belonging to the âkhirah possess the value of extremely solid diamonds. The intense feelings in man's fitrah like intense curiosity, fervent love, terrible ambition and desiring obstinately have been given to gain the matters belonging to the âkhirah. To direct those feelings intensely towards transitory matters of the world is giving the price of eternal diamonds to a transient piece of glass that will break. A point occurred to the mind in connection with this; I shall tell it. It is as follows:
‘Ashq is an intense love. When it is directed towards transitory beloveds, it either causes its owner to suffer perpetual torment and pain or since the metaphorical beloved is not worthy of the price of such intense love, it causes its owner to search for an eternal beloved; the metaphorical ‘ashq transforms into true (Haqîqî) ‘ashq.
Thus, there are thousands of feelings in man. Each of them has two degrees like ‘ashq. One is metaphorical, the other true (Haqîqî).
For example, the feeling of anxiety about the future is present in everyone. When one becomes intensely anxious, he realizes that he does not have a certain proof in his hand to reach the future he is anxious about. Also, a future, which is brief and undertaken in respect of rizq, is not worthy of such intense anxiety. He turns his face away from it and turns toward a true and long future beyond the grave which has not been undertaken for the ghâfil.
Also, he displays intense ambition for possessions and rank. Then he sees that the transient possession, which has been put temporarily under his supervision, and calamitous fame and perilous rank, which is the source of riyâ, are not worthy of such intense ambition. From it, he turns toward ma’nawî ranks and degrees in closeness to Allah, which are true ranks, and toward the stock of provisions for the âkhirah and ‘amal as-sâlih, which are true possessions. The metaphorical ambition, which is a bad quality, transforms into true ambition, which is an elevated quality.
Also, for example, with intense obstinacy, he expends his feelings on insignificant, fading, transient matters. Then he sees that he remains obstinate for a year on a thing not worth even a minute's obstinacy. Also, on account of obstinacy, he displays steadfastness for a poisonous and harmful thing. Then he sees that this powerful feeling was not given to him for such things. Expending it on them is contrary to hikmah and haqiqah. He expends that intense obstinacy not on those useless transitory matters, but on the elevated and eternal haqiqahs of îmân and principles of Islam and the services of the âkhirah. Such metaphorical obstinacy, which is a contemptible quality, transforms into true obstinacy — that is ardent steadfastness on haqq — which is a beautiful and elevated quality.
Thus, like these three examples, if man uses the ma’nawî faculties given to him on account of the nafs and the world and acts with ghaflah as though he will eternally remain in the world, they become the means to contemptible moral qualities, wastefulness and futility. But if he expends the weak ones on the matters of the world and the strong ones on ma’nawî duties and the duties of the âkhirah, they become the source of praiseworthy moral qualities and the means to happiness in both worlds conformingly hikmah and haqiqah.
Thus, I guess that one reason for the advice of those who give advice remaining ineffective at this time is they say to the people who possess bad moral: "Don't be envious! Don't display ambition! Don't hate! Don't be obstinate! Don't love the world!" That is, like changing their fitrah, they propose something which they deem impossible. If they say: "Turn the face of these feelings toward things which are khayr; change their channel!" both the advice would be effective and it would be an order proposed within the sphere of their will.
The Ninth Letter