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Saturday, June 8, 2013

The Rotting of Hearts

The Rotting of Hearts
The body of a human being is of the earth. Therefore, man has material needs, like the rest of creation, such as eating, drinking and reproductive needs. Yet, at the same time his soul belongs to the spiritual world and to Allah. When man is controlled by the needs of the body he falls away from Allah. But, if the soul is in control of the body, man comes closer to God. His body is engulfed in the divine light, and his heart is illuminated.
In order to achieve divine illumination we have to purify our hearts from the earthly characteristics inherent in them. Without purification of the heart we cannot lead a healthy spiritual life. Much as there are physical diseases, there are also spiritual diseases, and these reside in the heart.
If a tree has diseased roots the traces of the malady can be seen in its branches and fruit. If there is a disease in the heart its effects are visible through the wrong actions of the person. The disease of the heart can be cured by the rememberance of God and the chanting of His beautiful names. Allah the Almighty states in the Chapter Ra’d:
“The Unbelievers say: "Why is not a sign sent down to him from his Lord?" Say: "Truly Allah leaveth, to stray, whom He will; But He guideth to Himself those who turn to Him in penitence, "Those who believe, and whose hearts find satisfaction in the remembrance of Allah: for without doubt in the remembrance of Allah do hearts find satisfaction.” (Ra’d: 13:27-28)
Much as a disease needs a thorough course of medication, similarly the heart can be treated through continuous rememberance; a little rememberance here or there does not treat the disease at the root. Therefore, the Holy Qur’an commands that Allah should be often remembered. The Qur’an commands us to remember Him day and night, often no number or limitation being given. When the number is not stated, it is understood that the number should be more than that of anything else. An occasional rememberance of God does not soften the heart; the following verse commands us:
U ye who believe! Remember Allah with much remembrance. (Ahzab 33:41)
“And when the Prayer is finished, then may ye disperse through the land, and seek of the Bounty of Allah: and celebrate the Praises of Allah often (and without stint): that ye may prosper”. (Juma 62:10)
“Remember thy Lord much, and praise (Him) in the early hours of night and morning”. (Al-i Imran 3:41)

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