Naqshbandi Principle:Solitude in the Society (Khalwat dar Anjuman)

Bismillahi Rahmani Raheem

Allahumma Swalli Alaa Sayyidina Muhammadin Wa alaa Aali Sayyidina Muhammadin Wa Sallim

Madad Ya Al Haqqani Madad Ya Sahibu Saif, Madad Ya Ambiya Wa Awliya Allah

There are eight Naqshbandi Principles formulated by the Imam  of the Khwajagan (early Naqshabndi Silsila) order , Hazret Shaykh Abdul Khaliq Ghujdavani (Q.S) and three other principles formulated by the Imam of the Tariqah Khwajah Muhammad Baha’uddin Naqshbandi Al-Uwaisi Al-Bukhari (Q.S).

They are

1-Hosh Dar Dam (Awareness of breath), 2-Nazar Bar Qadam (Watching the step), 3-Safar dar Watan (Inward Journey in the Spiritual Path) , 4-Khalwat Dar Anjuman (Solitude in the Society) , 5-Yad Kard (Reminding outwardly and inwardly of God’s Name), 6-Baz Gasht (return to the responsibilities of a person according to  Shari’ah after performing pure Zikr), 7-Concentration on God (Yaddasht), 8-Nigadasht (Guarding one’s spiritual state) 

Other three Principles taught by Khwajah Shah Baha’uddin Naqshbandi (Q.S) as an additional three methods of training the students were:

9-Awareness of time (Wuquf E Zamani), 10-Counting the Zikr repetitions (Wuquf e Adadi), 11-Constant Attachment of Heart to God (Wuquf E Qalbi)

In this article I am inspired to write about “Solitude in the Society”Khalwat Dar Anjuman”


These 11 principles are inter-related. But I believe the beginning and progress in the every of all other principle is based on the Khalwat Dar Anjuman”

One who is busy with the world cannot be busy with his purpose in the way (Tariqah), A Seeker must therefore busy with what concern him.

Some people asking why they are not sent to practice Outward Seclusion . Some Shaykhs were send to Seclude in the lonely places, however their heart become busy with where there and what they were busy with in day today life. So where returned without any benefit of seclusion.

Solitude in the Crowd is the discipline of the heart, you remain detached from the temptations and desires of the lower world. Some people may go to seclude in Jungle and they may not be able to get their heart with them, so even though they are in the middle of Jungle or Wilderness, they are busy with thoughts and worries about their family, wealth and social status in their society.

Abu Huraira reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said, The world is a prison for the believer and a paradise for the unbeliever.”Sahih Muslim 2956

Some people they may reach somewhere for seclusion, but unfortunately their heart becomes attached to the place they secluded.

Seclusion in the Society is when you are busy with Zikr of Allah and keeping your heart free from any attachments while you are in the streets/crowds.

The basic seclusion in society is to collect the thoughts from hearing and seeing and relate it with God’s prohibitions and lawfulness. To fill the thoughts about Allah. When you walk through the streets, suddenly you see a woman, you seclude from her by preventing yourself from having further look at her, because you remember God’s Word: “Lower your gaze” (Quran 24:30 Tell the believing men to reduce [some] of their vision and guard their private parts.)

It is narrated in a Hadith that : “There is no sin in first seeing what is forbidden as it occur unintentionally”, but second time when you look at a forbidden thing, it become harmful in the spiritual way.

Another example, you going to  a Zoo or walking in a country side, you are seeing a bird or animal, and you relate that creation to the remembrance of Allah and remain secluded from the creations and turning heart to the Creator.

On the authority of Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) who said:The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, “Part of the perfection of one’s Islam is his leaving that which does not concern him.” A hasan (good) hadeeth which was related by at-Tirmidhi and others in this fashion. (40 hadith, Imam Nawawi)

Solitude is either with in the Society or by isolating yourself from the society. First one is You seclude yourself and engage in the Zikr of Allah in the heart or just moving lips and tongue without making any loud voice  while physically among all kinds of people. Second one you go to lonely place where it is free from any distractions and engage in the remembrance of Allah.

Both type of Seclusion are Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad (alaihiswalathu wa salam). He (alaihiswalathu wa salam) used to pray night prayers while he is with his family and Ayesha (R.A) had her feet near the Prophet (s.a.w), Prophet alaihiswalathu wa salam, in the beginning often goes to the Cave (Al Hira) on Mount of Light (Jabal Noor) and used seclude for many days isolating himself from the rest of the people of Makkah!

So anyone who think this Naqshbandi Principle is an Innovation, he is a fool and does not need to quarrel with him. Because Solitude in the Crowd also mean to stay away from the corrupter and innovators and be busy with the Truth (Al Haqq). But anyone humble enough to study and accept the truth and follow it, there is no blame to clarify their doubts and questions. But quarrelsome people are surely sent by  your enemies who want to block your spiritual progress!

You are not concerned about what people thinking about you , you are concerned about what Allah and His Prophet Seeing about you. You are among the people but you are not influenced by them. You are influenced by God Almighty and His Emissary!  you are like Lotus that is the middle of dirty Water, The Lotus remain uncontaminated by the Water in the Pond! You are non-stick, your heart has a Teflon coating, wherever you are it is secluded from things that are against the Commandments of God! . You are not praying for the people, your dressings not for Telecasting for live Broadcast in TV or Internet, your manners are not to show people. But only for the sake of Allah.

As for the Naqshbandi Way, the Goal of a Murid (Seeker) is his God-the Absolute Truth the  Merciful and Loving (Al Haqq Ar-Rahman Al Wadood)

The Seeker must not have Pride, Arrogance, greed, anger, lust, Jealousy etc!. All these are the nature of the people of the lower of world and society is bound by this nature. So Solitude in  the society does not mean, to be blind, dumb and deaf.

One of the reasons most students of Tasawwuf (Tariqah)  loss spiritual progress is because they have one more more of the above symptoms in their heart, to their fellow Murids or people who are around them.

Even so many Shaykhs have drowned by such sickness , so they have been lost their promised status. Because every promise from the heavenly world requires a new description!.

If you close your eyes, ears and mouth, then it may cause fatal consequences.  But it means to seclude from the nature of society and seclude from evil that is around you.

Seek Solitude from Haram , Solitude from the Ego, Solitude from things that does not concern you. The worst enemy is the Ego, not the Society. So it came to my heart that, Solitude from the egos is greater solitude.

Because Allah says: (Quran 9:119 O YOU who have attained to faith! Remain conscious of God, and be among those who are true to their word!)


On the authority of Abu al-’Abbas Sahl bin Sa’ad as-Sa’idee (may Allah be pleased with him) who said:

A man came to the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and said, “O Messenger of Allah, direct me to an act which, if I do it, [will cause] Allah to love me and the people to love me.” So he (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, “Renounce the world and Allah will love you, and renounce what the people possess and the people will love you.” A hasan hadeeth related by Ibn Majah and others with good chains of authorities.حديث حسن، رَوَاهُ ابْنُ مَاجَهْ [رقم:4102]، وَغَيْرُهُ بِأَسَانِيدَ حَسَنَةٍ also in 40 Hadith Nawawi

These the vast topics, but it is an incomplete short note, that can be explained to individual to individual.

Insha Allah we will bring some examples for other 10 principles in the Naqshbandi Sufi Way.

Walhamdulillahi Rabbil Alaameen

~ Jouhar Ali Naqshbandi Al-Hassani Ar-Rabbani

Lotus-Example of Solitude from the Society
Lotus-Example of Solitude from in Society

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