Seerah Sundays/Ocean of Mercy (Online Class)

Seerah Sundays

Seerah Sundays is a weekly program studying the seerah, or story of  Prophet Muhammad’s life (peace & blessings be upon him).

The talks follow the text of Sidi Shaykh Muhammad al-Jamal’s The Ocean of the Mercy, with commentary offered by Said Bin Yunus.

Everyone is invited to join us:.

Class Resumes This Week

Sundays from 10 am – Noon Pacific

To listen by phone dial: 1 (669) 900-9128

Meeting ID#: 834-1404-4748

Passcode: 11235813

To watch online via Zoom CLICK HERE

 

Last Class:

Class 68: Chapter 14, (p 61 – 63) In this session, we discuss: a review after long break; Verse 15:94; the pagan response to the Muslims refusing polytheism; why this is relevent to our times.

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Class 1A: Introduction to Mawlid In this session, we discuss mawlid, or birth of Prophet Muhammad (blessings & peace be upon him), the history of celebrating mawlid, & the ways to honor this special day.

Class 1B: Introduction to Seerah In this session, we discuss: seerah, the science of Prophetic biography; it’s development & benefits. We also discuss the title of the text: The Ocean of the Mercy.

Class 2: Foreword (p 3) In this session, we discuss: the first/last of prophets; the Qutb & friends of Allah; inherited vs innovated knowledge; intention & organization of the book.

Class 3: Opening Pages & Prayers (p 4-9) In this session, we discuss: the traditional text’s opening prayers & their meanings.

Class 4: Prologue #1 (p 9) In this session, we discuss: the purpose of a prologue; The 13 Attributes that define the Nature of Allah; the nature of guidance.

Class 5: Prologue #2 (p 9-11) In this session, we discuss: Light & darkness; the Light of Allah; the similtude of Allah’s Light; the light of the Prophet (blessings & peace be upon him).

Class 6: Chapter 1, Opening Verse (p 13) In this session, we discuss: Qur’anic verse 21:107 & the projection of Muhammadan light into the five worlds of Sufi cosmology: Lahut, Jabarut, Malakut, Mulk & Nasut.

Class 7: Chapter 1, Historical Context #1 (p 13) In this session, we discuss: the Prophetic light in relation to ante-diluvian prophets Adam & Idris (peace be upon them).

Class 8: Chapter 1, Historical Context #2 (p 13) In this session, we discuss: the Prophetic light in relation to Prophet Nuh (peace be upon him), and his children’s legacy to set the stage for understanding Prophet Ibrahim (peace be upon him).

Class 9: Chapter 1, Historical Context #3 (p 13) In this session, we discuss: Qur’anic verses 16: 120-123 “Ibrahim was a nation unto himself”, the great place of Prophet Ibrahim (peace be upon him) in the history of humanity.

Class 10: Chapter 1, Historical Context #4 (p 13) In this session, we discuss: the character & early life of Prophet Ibrahim in Ur, his later migration to the Holy Land with Sarah, their experience in Egypt, and the noble qualities of his family.

Class 11: Chapter 1, Ibrahim’s Wives (p 13) In this session, we discuss: the importance of having a good manners towards the Friends of God, the beautiful character of Ibrahim’s wives Sarah & Hajar (peace be upon them), & prophecies of the previous scriptures about Sayyidina Isma’il (peace be upon him) & Prophet Muhammad (blessings & peace be upon him.)

Class 12: Chapter 1, Migration to Makkah (p 14) In this session, we discuss: Hajar/Isma’il’s migration to Makkah (peace be upon them); the marvelous nature of Zamzam; the arrival of Jurham; the qualities of famale friends of Allah.

Class 13: Chapter 1, Sacrificial Son (p 14-15) In this session, we discuss: the Divine Order to sacrifice Isma’il (peace be upon him); the historical account, the wisdom & ramifications of the Order; the relationship between sacrifice & fana’; the relationship of Isma’il’s story to the Sufi Promise/bay’ah.

Class 14: Chapter 1, Building the House (p 15-16) In this session, we discuss: Ibrahim & Isma’il (peace be upon them) building the Ka’aba, the spriritual signs contained within the Kaa’ba, & the rites of worship that open the Ka’aba as a Living House of God.

Class 15: Between Chapters 1 & 2, History of Arabia (p 16) In this session, we discuss: Prophet Isma’il’s lifetime, children & legacy; “Perished Arabs”, “Pure Arabs” & “Accultured Arabs” at the time of Prophet Isma’il (peace be upon him).

Class 16: Chapter 2, Jurhum & Khuza’a (p 16) In this session, we discuss: the first 500 years after Prophet Isma’il (peace be upon him); the rule of Jurhum & Khuza’a; & the beginning of polytheism at the Ka’aba.

Class 17: Chapter 2, Taghut & Jahiliyyah (p 16-18) In this session, we discuss: the social & spiritual shift from tawhid (monotheism) to taghut (polytheism) leading up to the times of the Messenger of Allah (blessings & peace be upon him) in jahiliyyah (the age of pre-Islamic ignorance).
 
Class 18: Chapter 2, Prophetic Ancestory (p 18-19) In this session, we discuss: the ascendency of the tribe of Quraysh & the lineage of Qusay b. Kilab, Abdul-Manaf, Hashim and Abdul-Muttallib; ancestors of the Prophet Muhammad (blessings & peace be upon him). 

Class 19: Chapter 3, Zam Zam & ‘Abdullah (p 19-21) In this session, we review: the migration of the Prophetic Light, from the first light of creation through the generations to the grandfather & father of Prophet Muhammad (blessings & peace be upon him); the recovery of Zamzam & the life of ‘Abdullah.

Class 20: Chapter 4, The Elephant (p 23-24) In this session, we discuss: the Jews & Christians of Yemen, the arrival of Abraha in Arabia & the story of the People of the Elephant.

Class 21: Chapter 4, The Meaning of the Signs (p 24) In this session, we discuss: the meanings of the signs that Allah (exalted is He) put in the cosmos & in the cultural events in Arabia; the different reactions of the polytheists & the People of the Previous Scriptures who were looking for a Prophet; & some of the meanings of these events/signs that are relevant for us today.

Class 22: Chapter 4, Mawlid Sharif (p 24) In this session, we discuss: The Light of Allah; the light of the Prophet (blessings & peace be upon him); & the descent of that light through his noble birth (Mawlid Sharif) as a manifestation of light.

Class 23: Chapter 4, Baby of Blessings (p 25) In this session, we discuss: the time of the Prophet as a newborn (blessings & peace be upon him) while in the home of his mother Amina; & the unique qualities of his perfected form such as, the light of his face, his beautiful fragrance, his blessed saliva; as well as the story of Thuwaybah, his mother-by-suckling.

Class 24: Chapter 4, Desert Dwelling (p 25) In this session, we discuss: the philosophy, ethics, & social customs of the American way of life (din) in contrast & comparison to the Bedouin way of life (din) regarding child rearing; the Arab social institution of foster families, & the reasons why Makkan people would send their newborns to live in the desert with Bedouin families.

Class 25: Chapter 4, Blessing in the Desert (p 25-26) In this session, we discuss: the Story of Halima as-Sa’diyya & lessons on relying on outward conditions vs Allah; a culture of celebrating life; & the meanings of barakah (blessing).

Class 26: Chapter 4, First Foster Family (p 26-27) In this session, we discuss: the early childhood of Prophet Muhammad (blessings & peace be upon him; his life in the desert with Halima as-Sadiyya; & returning home to Makkah.

Class 27: Chapter 5, Living With Loss (p 27) In this session, we discuss: the 93rd Surah of Qur’an (ad-Duha); understanding trials through a spiritual mindset; the loss of the Prophet’s mother & grandfather (blessings & peace be upon him); & the Wisdoms of Divine Protection in making him an orphan.
Class 28: Chapter 5, Abu Talib’s Family (p 28) In this session, we discuss: Abu Talib; his family & care for the young orphan Muhammad (blessings & peace be upon him); and the Prophet’s pre-teen years as a shepherd.
Class 29: Chapter 5, Meanings in Mentoring the Messenger (p 28) In this session, we discuss: some spiritual lessons to be learned from the guardianship of Abu Talib in the Prophet’s youth (blessings & peace be upon him).
Class 30: Chapter 5, First Trip To Syria (p 28-29) In this session, we discuss: the Prophet’s journey (blessings & peace be upon him) to Syria with Abu Talib, the meeting with Bahira the monk, his early work as a shepherd & merchant, and Allah’s wisdom in being a shepherd and merchant. 

Class 31: Chapter 6, Corruptions of Quraysh (p 29-31) In this session, we discuss: spiritual understandings of the Hums, the “Sacreligious Wars” & the Confederacy of al-Fudul.

Class 32: Chapter 7, The Messenger as a Merchant in Syria (p 31-32) In this session, we discuss: Surat al-Duha; the rise of Makkah as an economic center; Tribal structure; introducing Khadija bin Khuwaylid (may Allah be pleased with her); her business partnership with the Prophet (blessings & peace be upon him); & his trade trip to Basra with Maysara.

Class 33: Chapter 7, Marrying Khadija (p 31-32) In this session, we discuss: a brief review of the previous discussion; a deeper look into Khadija’s character (May Allah be pleased with her); her proposal to the Prophet (blessings & peace be upon him) & their marriage ceremony.

Class 34: Chapter 7, The Meaning of Good Character (p 32-33) In this session, we discuss: good character as the basis of Khadija’s proposal (may Allah be pleased with her); and the deep Sufi understanding of good character according to Imam al-Ghazali.

Class 35: Chapter 7, Khadijah’s Character (p 32-33) In this session, we discuss: highlights of the previous class (there was a long break in between); & the a deeper understanding of Khadija’s virtuous nature.

Class 36: Chapter 7, Marriage of Excellence (p 32-33) In this session, we discuss: The character of Prophet Muhammad (blessings & peace be upon him); good character (khuluq) & spiritual virtue (ihsan) as the basis of their marriage, the meaning of spiritual virtue (ihsan).

Class 37: Chapter 7, Beloveds of God #1 (p 32-33) In this session, we discuss: the first section of the chapter “The Beloveds of God” from Sidi Muhammad’s book Conversations in the Zawiyya (pg 24-25) as an explanation what a marriage of spiritual excellence (ihsan) looks like.

Class 38: Chapter 7, Beloveds of God #2 (p 32-33) In this session, we discuss: the second section of the chapter “The Beloveds of God” from Sidi Muhammad’s book Conversations in the Zawiyya (pg 25-26) as an explanation what a marriage of spiritual excellence (ihsan) looks like; focusing on time management.

Class 39: Chapter 7, Beloveds of God #3 (p 32-33) In this session, we discuss: the third section of the chapter “The Beloveds of God” from Sidi Muhammad’s book Conversations in the Zawiyya (pg 26-27) as an explanation what a marriage of spiritual excellence (ihsan) looks like; focusing on the role of the husband/father.

Class 40: Chapter 7, Beloveds of God #4 (p 32-33) In this session, we discuss: the fourth section of the chapter “The Beloveds of God” from Sidi Muhammad’s book Conversations in the Zawiyya (pg 27) as an explanation what a marriage of spiritual excellence (ihsan) looks like; focusing on the role of the wife/mother.

Class 41: Chapter 7, Beloveds of God #5 (p 32-33) In this session, we discuss: the fifth section of the chapter “The Beloveds of God” from Sidi Muhammad’s book Conversations in the Zawiyya (pg 27) as an explanation what a marriage of spiritual excellence (ihsan) looks like; focusing on spiritual advices of child rearing.

Class 42: Chapter 7, The Pre-Prophetic Household #1 (p 32-33) In this session, we discuss: the people who lived with the Prophet (blessings & peace be upon him) before his commission. We discuss his relationship to his step-children, and his own children: al-Qasim, Zaynab, Ruqayyah & Umm Kulthum.

Class 43: Chapter 7, The Pre-Prophetic Household #2 (p 32-33) In this session, we discuss: the people who lived with the Prophet (blessings & peace be upon him) before his commission. We briefly discuss Fatima & Abdullah, also known as at-Tahir & at-Tayyib, before introducing ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib, Zayd al-Harithah & Zubayr ibn al-Awwam (May Allah be pleased with them all).

Class 44: Chapter 8, Rebuilding the Ka’abah (p 34-37) In this session, we discuss: the story of the Quraysh rebuilding the Ka’abah 5 years before the commission of Prophethood.

Class 45: Chapter 8, Birth of Fatima (p 34-37) In this session, we discuss: the birth of Fatimah az-Zahra’ (may Allah be pleased with her) & her early life. This class finishes our discussion of the stage of the seerah before the commission of Prophethood.

Class 46: Chapter 9, (p 37) In this session, we discuss: Allah’s declared intention in creating Muhammad & establishing him as His Final Messenger (blessings & peace be upon him); spiritual maturation in 40 years; the desire to retreat from society; the search for Allah; spiritual experiences in the hills of Makkah & the Cave of Hira on the Mountain of Light.

Class 47: Chapter 9, (p 37-38) In this session, we discuss: the pre-prophetic practices of retreat in Hira & the Sufi concept of khalwah (solitude) as a state & a practice; as well as the sunnah practice of ‘itikaf (staying in the mosque).

Class 48: Chapter 9, (p 38-39) In this session, we discuss: a summary of previous introduction classes of the Muhammadan Light & his role (blessings & peace be upon him) as the 1st & Last Messenger of Allah (Exalted is He); as well as the nature of Khilafa & 3 ontologies of humanity.

Class 49: Chapter 9, (p 39) In this session, we discuss: the true dreams that came to the Messenger of Allah (prayers & peace be upon him) before he received the prophetic commission; the relationship of dreams to revelation; prophetic dreams; classification of dreams according to the Qur’an & Sunnah; differentiating between the types; manners related to sleep & dreaming.

Class 50: Chapter 9, (p 39) In this session, we discuss: Sidi’s use of metaphor of the mountain, the valley & the cave in relation to Qur’anic stories of Musa & Muhammad (blessings & peace be upon him).

At minute 1:44:00 we explore the Prophet’s seeking shelter in the cave to current Corona Virus quarantine; the Prophetic understanding of disease; & inner & outer etiquette of contagion.

Class 51: Chapter 9, (p 39-40) In this session, we discuss: the first encounter of our Master Muhammad (blessings & peace be upon him) & the Arch-angel Jibra’il (peace be upon him) in the Cave of Hira in Ramadan, 610 CE; and the relationship of these outer events to the inner states of fana fi-shaykh, fana’ fi-rasul & fana’ fi-llah.

Class 52: Chapter 9, (p 40) In this session, we discuss: how Jibra’il (peace be upon him) squeezing the Prophet (blessings & peace be upon him) 3 times relates to 3 stations of fana fi-shaykh, fana’ fi-rasul & fana’ fi-llah; as well as 3 necessary qualities to cultivate to prepare ourselves to reach these stations.

Class 53: Chapter 9, (p 40) In this session, we discuss: the 3 squeezes in the Cave of Hira as an allegory for the states of fana fi-rasul & fana fi-llah; the gnostic adab of witnessing both Haqqiqah & Shariah; the humanity of Muhammad (blessings & peace be upon him) vs the Reality of Muhammad (blessings & peace be upon him); some descriptions of fana’ from our beloved shaykh (Allah have mercy on him).

Class 54: Chapter 9, (p 40) In this session, we: reviewed & finished our discussion on the 3 stages of fana fi-shaykh, fi-rasul & fi-llah, by reading descriptions of fana’ & baqa’ from Sidi’s book How the Arrival is Reached.

Class 55: Chapter 9, (p 41) In this session, we discuss: the meaning of the Divine Name ar-Rabb, the relationship of the slave & Lord in ubudiyyah, the state of dependency at the beginning of human creation (physical & spiritual); Sidi’s tafsir of Suratul ‘Alaq (#1-5); & fana in the 3rd station of the nafs.

Class 56: Chapter 9, (p 41) In this session, we discuss: the esoteric meanings of the “3 firsts of creation”, a) the intellect, b) the pen & c) the Muhammadan Reality.

Class 57: Chapter 9, (p 41-43) In this session, we discuss: Laylat ul-Qadr, the Prophet’s experience leaving the cave (blessings & peace be upon him); the nature of miracles (mu’jiza); the miracle of the Qur’an.

Class 58: Chapter 9, (p 43-46) In this session, we discuss: Prophet Muhammad’s return home (blessings & peace be upon him); Khadija’s response (may Allah be pleased with her); Waraqa’s place in society & advice to them; “The Pause” of revelation (al-fatrah); the meaning of wahy (revelation); 7 types of wahy.

Class 59: Chapter 10, (p 46-51) In this session, we discuss: “a good word” i.e. the shahadah & it’s benefits; the metaphor of a tree; brief commentary on chapter 10 covering exerpts from The Tree of Existence from Ibn al-Arabi.

Class 60: Chapter 11, (p 52-53) In this session, we discuss: the chapter opening, state of the Prophet (blessings & peace be upon him) during the period of the fatrah (pause of revelation); the Divine Wisdom of the period; the end of the fatrah with the earliest revelations; surahs ‘Alaq (96), Qalam (68), Mudathir (74) & Muzammil (73); the earliest Qur’anic teachings & practices.

Class 61: Chapter 11, (p 53-55) In this session, we discuss: the heart of the Prophet (blessings & peace be upon him) as the mirror of the Qur’an; the finality of his message (blessings & peace be upon him); the universal nature of the Qur’an; & the different stages of the prophetic mission.

Class 62: Chapter 12, (p 56) In this session, we discuss: the Secret Period of the Call (da’wah); the wisdom of spreading Islam with discretion; the first people who accepted the din from the household of the Prophet (blessings & peace be upon him); & the lessons we can glean from that.

Class 66: Chapter 12, (p 57 – 59) In this session, we discuss: a brief review of the Secret Period; the Divine Order to invite Bani Hashim to Islam; the first attempt; the nature and types of miracles; the personage of Abu Lahab b. Abdul Muttalib; the second attempt; the different responses in the family to the invitation; and the wisdom of Abu Talib not embracing Islam.

Class 67: Chapter 12, (p 59-60) In this session, we discuss: the Prophetic call to all of Makkah at Mt Safa in year 3 of the Divine Message; the events that transpired; and the wisdom of these events.

Class 63: Chapter 12, (p 56 – 57)  In this session, we discuss: the first people outside the household of the Prophet (blessings & peace be upon him) to accept Islam during the secret period; Abu Bakr as-Siddiq; ‘Uthman ibn ‘Affan; Talha b. Ubaydullah; az-Zubayr b. al-Awwam; Abdur-Rahman b. ‘Awf; Abu Ubaidah b. al-Jarrah & Sa’d b. Abi Waqqas (May Allah be pleased with them).

Class 64: Chapter 12, (p 56 – 57)  In this session, we discuss: the followers of the Secret Period of the call; the names of the early converts & how the din spread through close interpersonal relationships within families, friendships & clans; the status of the early converts & how most were of a lower social-economic standing; also the wisdoms of this pattern in all of the Prophetic missions; and how & why this theme is relevant today in the struggles of Black Americans & the Palestinians.

Class 65: Chapter 12, (p 56 – 57)  In this session, we discuss: the followers of the Secret Period: their quality & quantity; refuting the claims of modern orientalists who disparage them; the early reaction of Qurayshi polytheists; the establishment of Dar al-Arqam; & the reasons for establishing this first meeting place. Also, beginning at min 1:37:07 we discussed Chapter 13 (p 60 – 61).

Class 65: Chapter 13 (p 60 -61) This is an excerpt from the end of Class 65. We covered how the original salat was sent down, the number daily prayers in the early days; as well as comparing the original form of prayer to the finalized form revealed later.