"Life is no Picnic in Sotokoi Stone Pits" - Village Women
Feb 26, 2009, 4:24 AM
The Alchemy of Transformation on the Sufi Path is the in depth account of the inner and outer journey of the soul on the path of return to its Lord. The author, Sheikha Maryam Kabeer Faye, was guided on a journey of profound transformation and illumination to many extraordinary places, people, and understandings in her quest for Divine Knowledge.
Born in Hollywood, California, when she was twelve years old, she was given a scroll containing a painting of an ancient man with a staff and a lantern, upon which were inscribed the words: SEEK AND THE TRUTH SHALL MAKE YOU FREE. From the moment she received this message, her life became a journey in quest of the liberating Truth. She went to college in Berkeley, CA, and then began to travel around the world in search of the way leading most directly to the Divine.
She never followed a map, but was guided by the Divine Hand. Born Jewish, she was guided to embrace Islam at the hand of an ancient Sufi Master, ten minutes away from the tomb of the Prophet Ibrahim (a.s). Realizing the oneness of the divine transmission revealed through all the Prophets and Messengers (a.s.) as a descendant of Bani Isra'il, she naturally, inevitably, and joyously embraced Islam.
She was guided to study with Sufi Masters around the world, ever entering deeper into the bounteous grace of Islam through the blessings bestowed in the love and remembrance of Allah (swt) and His Messenger (saw). Her ever-deepening love for Allah and the Rasul (saw), for the light and truth of Islam, ultimately led her through Mecca and Medina to West Africa, where she is now engaged in her fourteenth trip to this land.
About her experiences in West Africa, she writes: "Ultimately I found here the very essence, that is - the living transmission - of the liberating knowledge I had been seeking everywhere in my extensive journey, both the inner and the outer manifestations of pure Islam. It is here, in West Africa, that I found many answers to the questions resonating within my soul from the time I set out on the quest. So immersed are these people in the love of the Prophet (saw) that, whatever any government may say or do, this is truly the law of the land. And this love, inspired by Allah, Most Loving, is manifested abundantly in action. We can hear it in the beautiful Quranic recitations and qasidas resonating everywhere in this land and experience it in the generosity shown - the abundant welcome extended - in every house. Everyone eats together from the provision Allah has bestowed. Everyone is truly welcome, truly accepted and loved, and that is why I have felt that I, who have traveled so many miles across the face of the earth in search of the path of wisdom and love, purity and truth, have finally come home!
This profound journey through so many stages and stations has come to completion and fruition in the Mustafawiyyah Tariqat under the guidance of Sheikh Harun Faye Al Faqir. Her quest for Divine Knowledge led the seeker finally to the ocean of Knowledge and Divine Guidance manifested in this blessed Tariqat. Translated as the Way of Muhammad, it is the living transmission of the deep sunnah of the Holy Prophet (saw), sent by Allah Most Gracious as Mercy for all the worlds. So it was to this blessed path that the journey ultimately led.
Sheikha Maryam Kabeer Faye is presently traveling in Senegal and the Gambia with Sheikh Harun Faye and some of his students on a mission of love and service for the sake of Allah. She can be contacted at the e-mail address: barakah @verizon.net.