Dhikr & Daily Practice

Daily Practice and Dikr

Come, come, whoever you are –
Wanderer, worshipper, lover of leaving.
Come, even if you have broken your vows a thousand times.
Come and come yet again.
Ours is not a caravan of despair.
(Mevlana Jalaluddin Rumi)

Dhikr: the Remembrance of God

Meaning simply ‘remembrance’, zikr is an important element in Sufi spirituality.  The zikr we do here is based on the very simple freeform repetition of God’s divine qualities, first and foremost we repeat the primary quality “Allah”.  Zikr is a state of presence, as well as a process of establishing a relationship with the divine, it is the experience of loving and being in love with the divine, with infinite being.

Sohbet: Spiritual Conversation

Literally meaning ‘companionship’, in Turkish sohbet refers to spiritual conversation and is designed to aid personal reflection and development.  That is, it aims to build a space in which group members might share deeper parts of themselves, rather than being concerned with religious or theological debate, or intellectual discussion.

In our meetings, we read and reflect on selected verses from the Qur’an.  These verses reflect key themes in our ongoing growth and are an essential means of personal and communal transformation.

In this gathering of souls, we experience and listen to one another with humility, respect and patience. It is by being in this state of openness that the meaningful insights of other group members can touch our hearts in a deep, human way.

The open and free reading of the Qur’an by all in one’s own language followed by discussion on the reading and an exegesis is a wholly Qur’anic concept, we embrace that freedom.

Adab: Etiquette

Etiquette is an essential element in fostering a deep sense of conscious community.  In these sessions, we aim to encourage, focus and develop our sense of adab.  We try to maintain the following principles of adab:

‘Let each person in the circle speak in their turn, from their heart, sharing either concrete observation of their own lives and experience, or an insight. If someone feels they have nothing to communicate from their heart they may pass.

What is spoken is from and for oneself, never a commentary on or reply to another person’s sharing. Each person in the circle should be their own “editor.” The best words are, generally, few and from the heart. Each person should practice the art of listening without judgment. Gradually communication, trust, and mutual respect should deepen”

We learn to observe, to control our impulses when that is called for, and to lose our ‘selves when that is called for. We learn to behave as if everyone else is of a higher station than ourselves, this is called ta’ruf.  Our conversation is centred on God and coming into harmony with God and each other.

Since we are attempting to bring our selves into alignment with divine concepts of character transformation, we will face many tests and it is inevitable that there will be some interpersonal tensions from time to time. Adab helps us to avoid some of the destructive behaviours that could disturb or even destroy relationships in a halka (circle).


We are not affiliated to any sect, madhab or tariqah and carry out our meetings in full fellowship and agreement with the Inclusive Mosque Initiative. As such we hold mixed gender meetings.

Daily Practice

The Daily Practice of Quranic Sufism (as per the Quranic Spirituality Group) should include at least a half-hour of zikr every morning or evening. The standard Dhikr which is practiced in all our halkas (circles), includes a recitation of:

The Opening (surah al-fatiha)
99 La Illaha Il Allah,
99 Allah Allah, 33 Hu

In order that these practices should not become too mechanical, we suggest that you begin with a clear intention to recite 99 of any zikr (of the above) using a 33 or 99 beaded prayer bead as this aids concentration. Don’t worry if you lose concentration for a second or two. Nobody’s concentration is perfect. But if you find yourself counting beads and you know that you have not been present for one or more beads, then start again. Make an intention to complete 99 repetitions of something with complete presence. Using the beads makes it easier because if using a 33 beaded version you simply do 3 rounds or if using a 99 beaded version you simply complete one round, simple!

The ritual contact prayers (salat/namaz) are also encouraged. These prayers offer an experience of surrender and a grounding that would be difficult to achieve by any other means. Nevertheless, if one feels resistance to this practice, it would be desirable to punctuate one’s day with moments of supplicatory prayer in some form.
Because salat engages both the body and the mind, salat is a discipline, a way to cultivate mindfulness and a means of establishing resonance with the source of all blessings.