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879 I would like to know that what’s the difference between a Muslim who follows a Sheikh and gets Faiz and a Muslim who prays but does not follow a sheikh will their Ibaadat be accepted or will the person who follows a sheikh will get more rewards. The reason I ask is I have heard on the day on judgment they will help their Mureeds is this true?
With a simple example, I will try my utmost best to explain what the purpose of a Sheikh is in Islam.

When a person wants to learn how to drive, then he has a few options in front of him. Firstly, he can buy the many driving manuals available and read them cover to cover. He can watch DVDs on how to drive and he can then apply for the driving test. As you can imagine, the chances of him passing are small.

Secondly, the person can ask a fellow driver (a friend or relative for example) to help in. He can take lessons with him and he can give him practical advice on how to drive. Though infinitely better than the first option, there are still some drawbacks. The person teaching may have some bad habits which he passes on to the driver. He may have no or little knowledge of what the driving test procedures are.

Finally, a person wishing to drive may seek the help of a qualified and experienced driving instructor, who has knowledge of the road, the driving test and from his teaching experience, knows what mistakes a person is making. This is easily the best opinion available to a person wishing to drive.

Similarly, a Sheikh is like an experienced teacher and instructor. He knows of the pitfalls a person may face and he knows the way to success. His ultimate aim is to help his students (Mureeds) overcome these hurdles. A person may be able to find success and faith without a Sheikh in the same way a driver may pass his driving test without going to a qualified instructor, but such instances are rare.

This aside, seeking the company of the pious is seen as pivotal in Islam. Suffice to say, the great rank of thousands of Muslims called the Sahaba Iqraam was achieved on one simple basis; they kept the company of the Blessed Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him).

In an oft-cited Hadith, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said a person will be with the one who he loves on the Day of Judgement. This is what is meant by Mureeds being with their Sheikhs on the Day of Judgement.

(Answered by: Alims at Islamic Centre, Leicester, UK.)
Category (Islam / Muslims)