Wahdat-ul-Wajood and Hazrat Babuji (R.A)
Following the example of his august father, Hazrat Babuji (R.A) was a firm adherent to the concept of "Wahdat-ul-Wajood" (Ultimate Unity of Being). According to him, the Divine Will is at work behind all that is happening in the universe. The Divine Will which is absolute and everlasting manifests itself in the diverse aspects of this universe.
Inspired by this concept, he treated all people with equal grace regardless of their faith, class or creed. As a result, many Hindus , Sikhs, Christians and other non-Muslims held him in high esteem and devotion. One such person of Lahore (Dwarka Singh by name) once requested him several time to hold sama sittings at his house in Lahore, and , impressed by the sincerity and devotion, Hazrat Babuji readily fulfilled his wishes. When Dwarka Singh migrated to India after partition, similar sittings were arranged at his request in Amritsar and Delhi during Babuji's two or three visits there. Eye witnesses later testified that the chaste spiritual atmosphere generated at these sittings had to be experienced and seen in order to be believed. The Hindus and Sikhs present at these sittings would many times join the chorus of "Allah" resulting from the recitation of that Great Name during some portions of sama.
Babuji (R.A) was once asked to explain his phenomena by Mahboob qawwal. Babuji (R.A) replied that a time would come when he would understand the phenomena. Later on, Mahboob saw in his dream that Hazrat Pir Meher Ali Shah’s (R.A) grave opens and many similar faces keep emanating from him and vanishing. This process continued but the real face remained the same as it was. The vision led Mahboob to comprehend the reply to his question.
Translation: “You should take painting as the painter because it tells you that there is a painter.”
To a European lady teacher who had arrived with a letter of introduction from Sulaiman Hayat Dada, a descendent of Maulana Rumi, Babuji (R.A) recited the following verse and explained it:
Translation: "Every word has a meaning. The whole universe is like words and the meaning behind it is Allah as stated by Shaikh Muhyuddin Ibn-ul Arabi, except Allah, all else are words. You have fallen in Love with pictures (outward aspects of Being). From the oyster, seek the pearl. The outward appearances will vanish but the real meaning (inner aspect of Being) will be ever lasting".
Babuji (R.A) further explained the verse:
Pass beyond these two. This is 'Taqayyad' (being bonded). He is ' Itlaq' (Absolute Unity). 'Taqayyad' is hell while 'Itlaq' is paradise.
Maulana Jalaluddin Rumi (R.A), in "Masnavi Book I" under the caption: “How Ha’rut and Ma’rut replied up on their immaculateness and desired to mix with the people of this world and fell into temptation”, has explained the matter as under:
What is form in the presence of (in comparison with) reality? – very feeble. It is the reality of the sky that keeps it upside down (like an inverted cup).
Judge by the analogy of the celestial wheel – from whom does its motion proceed? from directive Reason. The motion of this shield - like body is (derived) from the veiled spirit, O son.
The motion of this wind is from its reality, like the wheel that is captive to the water of the stream. The ebb and flow, and incoming and out going of this breath – from whom does it proceed but from the spirit that is filled with desire?
Now it (the spirit) makes it (the breath) “Jeem” now “haa” and “daal”, now it makes it peace, now strife. Even so a God hath made this (sarsar) wind like a raging (dragon) against ‘Ad.
Again, He hath also made that wind (to be) peace and safety, for true believers.
“The Reality is Allah”, said the Shaikh of the religion, (who is) the sea of the spiritual realities of the Lord of created beings.
“Jabr-o-Qadr”: Predestination or Free Will
During his studies, Hazrat Babuji (R.A) asked a question about free will and predestination from his father Syedna Pir Meher Ali Shah (R.A) who explained as follows:
“A man has been given immense potentialities and vigour but the exercise of these powers remain within certain limits. He is like a stone as viewed by the necessitarianism (believer in pre-ordained things) while accountability rests on his so-called free will".
It happened that a few years later, Babuji (R.A) visited Bombay and had the change of visiting a circus show where a man started lifting a very heavy weight as made possible by his exercises. This visit cleared his mind regarding free will although this is subject to God’s will.
Imam Abu-Hanifa while talking along similar lines stated:
Translation: “Predestination and free will both are true. Don’t become one-eyed like Satan.”
In an attempt to explain the philosophy of free will, Imam Abu-Hanifa stood up to darken the room and by shutting the doors and bolting up the ventilators. He then remarked, “to darken this room is within my control and power but deflect the sun is beyond.”
Translation: “ One is free in one’s actions / deeds but enjoys not an infinite sovereignty”.
Whatever Babuji (R.A) said pointed in the same direction that man is free and yet the Divine Will is greater.
Mian Muhammad Bukhsh, the epic writer of Saif-ul-Muluk, in his works stated as:
Translation: “The gardener is free to water the plants and prune the twig; whether the seed will bear a fruit or not is solely up to God Himself.”
Babuji (R.A) narrated that once he asked Hazrat Pir Meher Ali Shah (R.A) the meaning of the following verse of Hafiz of Shiraz (R.A):
Translation: “The poet envies his eyes which glanced at that pretty face and gained their luster; as well as expresses his desire to recast that glance”.
The reply given was that he should inquire from Ulama. The Ulama expressed regrets. Then he inquired and got the same reply. When he asked the third time, the reply was that a time would come when he would find out the meaning himself. Later on, after Hazrat Pir Meher Ali Shah’s (R.A) death, Munshi Abdul Jabbar was asked in dream by Hazrat as to why his coffin had been placed so deep in the grave. It was 13 feet below. Therefore, it was brought out for reconstruction of the grave. Babuji (R.A) said that he peeped through a small crevice in the wooden coffin and saw a flash of light from the head side and suddenly the meaning of that verse came to his mind. The light that he saw was quite different from the electric light and was a strange one. Moreover, a scented smell better than that of “Musk” was emanating. Babuji (R.A) further said that the statement he made was based on reality and not on partiality and it did not carry any idealization of his father.