The Tijaaniyah muslim sect which is based on the tenets of Sufism is one of the largest religious sects in Ghana and Africa as a whole. It is widely practised worldwide. However the concept of Sufism which the Tijaaniyah strongly upholds is often misunderstood or unappreciated to say the least.
It is against this background that Brother Al-Amin Al-Hassan(Image Inset: Al-Amin Al-Hassan (left) with Sheikh Abdul Malik Ibrahim Niass (right), son of Sheikh Ibrahim Niass of Kaolack) expounds the concept of Tijaaniyah Sufi Islam.
Sufism itself is an Islamic mysticism that emphasizes introspection and spiritual closeness to God. Sufism is a spiritual dimension which focuses on meditation and chanting sessions (to enable one’s heart to open).
The Tijaaniyah Sufi order forms part of other Sufi orders globally, all generally premised on the values of:
1: Istigfaar(seeking forgiveness from Allah)
2: Swalaatu alaa Nabbiyi(blessing the name of the Prophet)
3: Laa ilaaha illah Llaaha(reaffirming Allah’s oneness)
These values are all grounded in ahaadith and the Quran. But why they resonate with Sufism is that they are done as litanies (awraad) in dedicated committed forms.
Sheikh Ahmad Tijaani (RTA) described Sufism as carrying out the Divine command and avoiding that which has been prohibited externally and internally with regards to what pleases Allah.
Clearly, this is achieved through azkaar (remembrances) and awraad(litanies).
For earthly benefits, well, it should be understood that Sufism is a sort of ‘overtime’ type of servitude. It is done in addition to a Sufi’s Islamic religious obligations.
Benefits include that, by understanding and achieving closeness to God one loses the earthly focus and rigidity in faith. Sufi’s are generally content and tolerant of views.
As a brotherhood, there’s a great sense of community among Sufis, as they seek to help one another and extend service to communities in which they live.
Religiously, Tijaaniya is completely in conformance with Shari’a Muhammadiyyah; anything more is not. So adherents of Tijaaniya Sufi Islam are the first to subscribe to Shari’a Muhamadiyyah, as Mawlaanaa Sheikh Tijaani himself declared: if you hear something from me measure it against Shari’a. Anything in conformity, use it; anything at variance, ignore it( paraphrased).
Commitment to daily litanies and remembrances (zikir) of Allah give benefits in being close to Allah; the continual search for self and Allah leads to upholding Islamic values and hence, better as a Muslim.
Sufis, with continuous incantation of Istigfaar(penitence) are better positioned to gain Allah’s forgiveness.
Reciting Swalaat to the prophet in Sufism is seen as Allah’s commamd (Quran, 33:56) especially in the Tijaaniya order. How else to benefit than do exactly in multi folds that which Allah has commanded, and doing it as a lifelong commitment in the view that, as human, you can’t count your sins, and so your seeking of forgiveness must be perpetual.
As for what Sufis aspire in the hereafter, they generally reserve that to Allah. If they seek closeness to Him and He grants it, He surely won’t forget them here and on the day of judgment. That’s why Sufi practices are over and above prescribed routines.
Allah knows best, and and may He grant us further appreciation of His knowledge.
Article Submitted By: Brother Al-Amin Al-Hassan – (Bradford – UK)
Pure City International School founder wins Prestigious Noble Award
The founder/Chief Executive Officer of the Pure City International School, Precious Senafiawo, has been honoured as one of the most reputable individuals in West Africa.
Mr Senafiawo, at the Nobels annual awards night held Friday at the Holiday Inn in Accra, picked up the Nobles International Award for men and women of integrity in West Africa.
The prestigious Nobles award is an honour bestowed by the West Africa Nobles Forum (a group of eminent West Africans), who every year identify deserving giants of industry in the sub-region and present them with the award.
This year, the governing council, headed by Wisconsin International University College Chancellor Dr. Paul Kofi Fynn, unanimously identified Mr Senafiawo as a deserving candidate and presented him with the award.
Recipients of the Nobles International Award are prominent West Africans whose selfless efforts in their chosen field of endeavour has earned them a reputation beyond the shores of their country. Recipients are also expected to have upheld the virtues of honesty, integrity and accountability in both their public and private lives.
Mr Precious Kweku Senafiawo met these impressive criteria and thus was honoured at Friday night’s ceremony.
An astute Entrepreneur, Businessman, a Visionary Motivator and a Philanthropic gem, Precious Senafiawo is the founder of Pure City International School, a private school located at Ga-Odumase, near Pokuase, in the Ga West District of the Greater Accra Region.
The school is the brainchild of Mr Senafiawo, who has been running it since age 24 when it was then known as Sena Royal Academy. He also runs the SENA Foundation to carry out impressive acts of philanthropy. The foundation has donated to bodies including the Akropong School for the Blind and has over the years picked up numerous children off the streets and sponsored their education.
In the 2018/19 academic year, the Foundation with Aqua Flava Mineral Water (another company by Mr. Precious Senafiawo) as a sponsor, organized a maiden edition of Science, Mathematics and ICT Quiz; dubbed ‘SSMAT QUIZ’, in the Ga West Municipality for all private basic schools in its jurisdiction.
Mr Senafiawo has risen from humble beginnings to become a blessing to many in the country, earning him the deserved honour of one of the noblest personalities in the entire West Africa.
Owusu Bempah’s bodyguards seize TV3 journalist, beat him to pulp
A TV3 journalist, Joseph Armstrong, had his baptism of fire Saturday afternoon when he was mauled by heavily built men, identified as security guards assigned to Prophet Isaac Owusu Bempah, without provocation.
Regrettably, members of the Glorious Word Power Ministries International in an unchristlike manner also punched and heckled him.
The incident happened at Dansoman Akukorfoto in the Greater Accra region while the young man was running a morning errand in his car when he met members of the church in a procession.
Some men dressed like National Security operatives ordered him to move his car as the people approach. Momentarily, some of them started banging his car for not moving quickly.
When he enquired which church it was and muttered “Aaaah Owusu Bempah’s church”, the people got infuriated and pounced on him.
Finally, he was hauled before the man of God who was driving alongside the procession to apologize.
Even though Prophet Owusu Bempah recognized the journalist, when Armstrong asked what his main offence was before he could render the necessary apology, the impatient members including the heavily built men surged forward in an attempt to beat him further.
The man of God later released him and asked him to worship at his church.
Joseph Armstrong who saw the incident as a mob action and not necessarily an attack on a journalist told 3news.com “I was even scared to go home. Some of them threatened to attack me anywhere they meet me. I had to run to someone’s room for protection. The whole thing looks like a dream to me. I was nearly lynched.”
Though traumatized, he said, “I hold nothing against the man of God”.
The matter was reported at Dansoman Police Station where medical form was issued to him. He has been at the hospital receiving medical attention.
“I’m in pains now, including my neck and my head,” he narrates.
Meanwhile, 3news.com has gathered that other road users were heckled by the security detail of the man of God in the course of the procession.
Scrap examination and integrate us now – New Cuban trained Ghanaian doctors
A group of Cuba-trained Ghanaian doctors is demanding the scrapping of a mandatory examination before their integration into the Ghana Health Service.
The demand follows their arrival in the country years after their training in Cuba on government scholarship.
The scheduled arrival of the doctors was the subject of controversy with calls from the Minority to get them fully integrated.
The doctors will have to write a Ghana Medical and Dental Council exams to be fully integrated into the Ghana Health Service.
But some of them who spoke to Citi News shortly after their arrival in the country said government should reconsider the writing of the examination.
“As newly trained medical doctors from Cuba, they have set that exam for us to write when we return to Ghana. But we have colleagues from other counties who also graduated with us but they have been incorporated in their health systems without writing any exams. We are not saying the exams is not important but we are saying that, they should find a way for us to just work.”
Another student also said, “Government invests money in students and it ends up losing half of them through the exams. I want to urge the government to find a better plan of inculcating us into the system. We are ready, if we have done done it for the Cuban government, why can’t we do it for our home country?”
The Scholarship Secretariat has justified arrangements that received the over 200 Cuba-trained Ghanaian doctors.
According to the Registrar of the Secretariat, Kingsley Agyeman, the decision to hold on to the certificates of the doctors is standard practice for students who are trained on government scholarship outside the country.
“The various schools have sent their certificates to the Ghana Missions in Havana, the mission will use the diplomatic channel to bring it to us here in Ghana. When they are done with their attachments and pass their licensing exam and they are practicing and finish serving their bond, anything that is supposed to be released to them will be released to them,” he said.
There have been concerns from the Minority in Parliament and Former Sege Member of Parliament, Alfred Abayateye about a decision to hold on to the certificates of the trained doctors with suspicions that the doctors may not be posted for political reasons.
It has always been the case that persons sponsored by the State have their documents retained until they complete the period of their bonds.
But, the Minority in Parliament wants the government to “quickly absorb” the over 200 doctors who are due to return to Ghana after years of training in Cuba.
Cuba Embassy responds
The Embassy of Ghana in Havana, Cuba has described as unfortunate claims made by a former Member of Parliament for Sege, Alfred Abayateye about the Ghanaian doctors who were trained in Cuba.
The former MP has alleged that some Ghanaian officials are frustrating the said doctors, who are to return to Ghana this weekend, saying their passports and certificates have been seized.
But, in a press statement, the Embassy said it expected Mr. Abayateye to seek further clarification from the Ministry of Health, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration before making his
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