In the days of his youth, Hadhrat Imaam Rabbani had written an article on the reality of Tariqat. It is reproduced hereunder.
“The knowledge of the Sufiyyah means the knowledge of the zaahir and baatin of the Deen and of the power of Yaqeen. This is the loftiest knowledge. The reality of Tasawwuf is adornment with the attributes of Allah Ta’ala, the elimination of one’s will and total engrossment in the pleasure of Allah Ta’ala. The character of the Sufiyyah is in fact the character of Rasulullah (Sallalahu alayhi wasalam) as stated by Allah Ta’ala:
“Most certainly, you (O Muhammad!) have been created on a great character.”
Further, whatever has been stated in the Ahaadith is executed within the scope of the characters of the Sufiyyah. The list of the akhlaaq (attributes and characteristics) of the Sufiyyah is as follows:
1. To believe oneself to be the most inferior. Its opposite is takabbur (pride).
2. Kindness to creation and to tolerate the difficulties and inconveniences they cause one.
3. Tenderness and cheerfulness and to abandon anger.
4. Sympathy for others and to give preference to them. This implies priority to the rights of others over one’s pleasures.
5. To be generous.
6. To overlook the wrongs of others and to forgive them.
7. To abstain from pretence.
8. To spend in moderation, without being miserly or wasteful.
9. To have trust in Allah.
10. To be contented with little worldly possessions.
11. To adopt piety.
12. To refrain from arguing, quarrelling and being wrathful except for the truth.
13. To abstain from malice and envy.
14. To abstain from the desire of respect and fame.
15. To fulfil promises.
16. To be tolerant, far-sighted and supportive of brothers.
17. Gratitude to the benefactor.
18. To sacrifice reputation for the sake of Muslims.
The Sufi in regard to akhlaaq adorns his zaahir and his baatin. The whole of Tasawwuf is in fact Adab (respect). The adab of the Divine Court is to shun everything besides Allah Ta’ala on account of shame for Allah’s splendour and grandeur.
The worst sin is to converse with the nafs, for it is the cause of spiritual blindness.”
Extacted from Masha'ikh e Chist by Hazrat Sheikh Zakariyya Rahmatullah Alayhi