Posts

Saving Our Souls Series | Part 4: 22 Sins of the Heart – Shaykh Yusuf Weltch

There are minor sins and there are major sins.  There are sins of the limbs and there are sins of the heart. The latter in both are the most severe.  Before you can repent from sins you need to know that you’ve fallen into them. So it only makes sense for us to be aware of the sins our hearts make so we can avoid them and turn back to Allah.

From the sins of the heart are:

  1. Ostentation in acts of righteousness
    • to act for the sake of attaining status and reverence from people
    • this (action) invalidate the reward (if it coincides with the action)
    • for example, self-conceit regarding Allah’s obedience – which will be mentioned next
  2. Self-conceit regarding obedience
    • to perceive worship emanating from one’s ability and therefore honoring the self because of it. This is due to a lack of consideration of Allah’s blessings upon him.
  3. Doubt in Allah [This is tantamount to disbelief]
  4. Feeling safe from the plot of Allah (i.e. feeling un-punishable)
    • to continue to disobey Allah counting on his mercy
  5. Despair from Allah’s mercy
    • For one to hold a firm judgment that Allah will certainly punish him in the Hereafter.
  6. Acting arrogantly to Allah’s servants
    • To refuse the truth, belittle people, and to see oneself as being better than many of Allah’s creation, ignorantly neglecting the grave matter of the ending.
  7. Hatred
    • Holding enmity in one’s heart by resolving to cause harm to a fellow Muslim. If he then acts upon that resolve without abhorring the action – this is another act of disobedience.
  8. Envy
    • Disliking blessings for a Muslim and feeling troubled because of it, if he doesn’t abhor this feeling or act according to it. [If such a feeling of dislike merely comes to one’s heart it is not written for them as a sin. That is as long as they abhor the feeling and is not pleased with it. This is because Allah Most High does not take us to take for involuntary actions.]
  9. Reminding of Charity
    • To remind a person of one’s favor upon him with the intention of harm. This invalidates the reward of the action.
  10. Persistence in Sin
    • The hearts avidness and resolve to repeat a sin
  11. Holding a Bad Opinion of Allah
    • This can sometimes be tantamount to disbelief
  12. Holding a Bad Opinion of the Slaves of Allah
    • That is without Islamically sanctioned cause
  13. Rejection of Destiny
    • This is disbelief
  14. Being pleased about one’s sin or the sin of another
  15. Treachery
    • To break a covenant or betray a trust – even if to a disbeliever
  16. Plotting
    • Plotting to cause harm to another in an illicit manner
  17. Holding rancor to the companions, the family of the Prophet (may Allah bless him and give him peace), or the righteous.
    • Holding rancor for all of them is disbelief
  18. Withholding regarding that which Allah has made obligatory
    • For example, withholding Zakat
  19. Miserliness
    • Extreme miserliness and inclining toward usurping the possessions of people even if it is prohibited
  20. Covetousness
    • Extreme miserliness and avidness to take other’s rights even if it is prohibited
  21. Mockery of that which Allah Most High venerates
    • This is disbelief if it is done to belittle and it is sinful if done in a way that portrays a lack of fulfilling to right of veneration.
  22. Belittling acts of worship, sins, the Qur’an, Islamic knowledge, paradise, or hell-fire for which Allah has given great importance.
    • The is tantamount to disbelief

May Allah forgive us of our sins, ameen

Saving Our Souls Series | Part 2: Thirty-Two Obligations of the Heart – Shaykh Yusuf Weltch

When we think of obligations we often think of the five daily prayers, fasting, zakah, hajj, being good to your parents, etc; which are all bodily obligations.  We hardly hear of obligations of the heart. Yes, the heart has actions and can commit haram and other vile deeds.

These obligations of the heart are:

  1. Faith in Allah Most High
  2. Faith in all that has come from Allah Most High
  3. Faith in the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and give him peace)
  4. Faith in that which the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and give him peace) has brought
  5. Sincere affirmation:
    • which is the essential meaning of faith
  6. Conviction:
    • which is a lack of doubt in that which one believes
  7. Sincerity:
    • which is acting in obedience to Allah, alone.
  8. Remorse for disobedience:
    • since it is contrary to the command of Allah
  9. Trust (i.e. reliance on) in Allah in matters of provision, safety from harm, and other things:
    • not relying on the means
  10. Constant awareness of Allah:
    • which is to remain aware that Allah Most High knows, sees, hears, and is aware of you
    • so that fear of Allah always prevents you from disobeying
  11. Contentment in Allah Most High:
    • to submit to Him and to abandon objecting to Him
  12. Holding a good opinion of Allah Most High:
    • to constantly bring to mind the blessings that Allah has bestowed on you in the past and to yearn for similar in the future
  13. Holding a good opinion of the creation of Allah Most High:
    • not to assume bad of anyone without sufficient religiously recognized proof
  14. To revere the symbols of Allah Most High:
    • everything that signifies obedience to Allah, like prayer
    • i.e. to revere everything that is revered in the Sacred law
  15. To be grateful for the blessings of Allah Most High:
    • meaning, not to use them in His disobedience
  16. Perseverance in fulfilling what Allah has obligated:
    • meaning, forcing oneself to do that and to hold fast to that
  17. Perseverance in abandoning that which Allah has prohibited:
    • restraining oneself from doing the forbidden
  18. Bearing patiently in the tests that Allah Most High sends your way:
    • that the test does not drive you to the forbidden
  19. Being confident that Allah will provide:
    • knowing that whatever is decreed for you to benefit from will never miss you
  20. Accusing the self:
    • accusing yourself in that which your desires call you towards lest it deceive you and draw you toward the forbidden
  21. Never being pleased with the self:
    • by always keeping in mind its deficiencies
  22. Abhorring the Devil:
    • by inclining to his disobedience
  23. Abhorring the world:
    • by not turning your attention to that which distracts you from the obedience of Allah Most High
  24. Abhorring the people of disobedience:
    • by inclining away from them, being averse to their disobedience, and refusing to follow them therein
  25. Love of Allah:
    • by accustoming the heart to His obedience alone, obeying His commands, and abstaining from His prohibitions
  26. Love of His speech:
    • by venerating its verses, submitting to it, and acting upon it
  27. Love of His Messenger:
    • our Master Muhammad (may Allah bless him and give him peace) by believing in him, honoring him, striving to follow him entirely
  28. Love of all the Prophets:
    • by believing in them and honouring them
  29. Love of the companions:
    • by keeping in mind their virtue; that they surpassed all in their Islam, in honor (by their companionship with the Prophet may Allah bless him and give him peace), their giving Him assistance, and their conveying the religion
  30. Love of the Prophetic family:
    • having concern for them, out of honor for the Prophet, for they are His family and closest relatives
  31. Love of the emigrants and the Helpers
    • those from the people of Mecca and Medina who helped the religion
    • especially the predecessors amongst them. (Loving them) by keeping in mind their uniqueness.
  32. Love of the righteous:
    • by revering them, turning to them, and travelling their path

Saving Our Souls Series | Part 1: Introduction – Shaykh Yusuf Weltch

Everyone has what they deem to be the most important thing in life. However, it could be argued that nothing is more central to the human condition than the very thing that makes us human-our souls. In a world concerned with the physical and the superficial we see that lives remain empty, purposeless. Let us close our eyes to the world and look inward. In these articles we will be looking at the fragile nature of the soul and how to save it from the poison of sin. Topics discussed include the heart, the eyes, the tongue, the ears, the hands, and their respective sins.

These articles are based on the tazkiya (self-purification) section of the book entitled, “The Ladder of Success to the Realization of Love of Allah” by Habib ‘Abdullah Bin Husayn Bin Tahir (the other two sections being theology and law). And who was Habib ‘Abdullah Bin Husain Bin Tahir? Well, he was one of the luminaries of both the legal and spiritual aspects of Islam; a person well versed in the intricacies of the soul and its alignment with the Sacred Law. He and His brother Imam Tahir were exemplars of steadfastness, true brotherhood, and not wasting a single moment of their time. He passed away in the year 1844 (1272 A.H.), may Allah have mercy on him and his brother.

But it doesn’t stop there; we’ll be adding enriching content and benefits from the works of other scholars of the science such as Imam Ghazzali, Imam Haddad, Habib Umar Bin Hafiz and others.

The Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) stressed the importance of the heart and its relation to the rest of the body in the famous hadith, “Truly in the body there is a morsel of flesh, which, if it be whole, all the body is whole, and which, if it is diseased, all of [the body] is diseased. Truly, it is the heart.” (Bukhari and Muslim)

Join us in this journey through our souls to discover Allah and let us learn about ourselves and our hearts, and become better spouses, better parents, better neighbors, and better humans.

SeekersGuidance offers a wide variety of free courses on the topics of tazkiya, the soul, and spirituality:

Purification of the Heart.

Answered by Shaykh Abdul-Rahim Reasat

Question: Assalamu alaykum

Where does purification of the heart begin?

How can i give dawah to my non muslim family?

Some of them ask a lot of theological questions that i’m not sure how to answer.

How can you forgive someone who has done something really heinous to you?

Answer: Wa ‘alaykum as-salam wa rahmatullah wa barakatuh

I pray you are well.

Repentance

Purification of the heart begins with repentance, when a person admits his wrongdoings and turns to Allah. Please refer to this reader for more information.

An excellent place to start at is this free On-Demand course on the First Principles of Islamic Spirituality.

Da’wa

Before trying to invite others to Islam you should try to strengthen your own faith and practice with knowledge, practice, and the company of the righteous. When your own transformation occurs it will be much easier to get them to see the beauty of Islam.

Forgivness

Please refer to this article to understand how you yourself can benefit from forgiving others.

May Allah bless you with the best of both worlds.

Wassalam,
[Shaykh] Abdul-Rahim Reasat

Shaykh Abdul-Rahim Reasat began his studies in Arabic Grammar and Morphology in 2005. After graduating with a degree in English and History he moved to Damascus in 2007 to study and sit at the feet of some of the most erudite scholars of our time.

Over the following eighteen months he studied a traditional curriculum, studying with scholars such as Shaykh Adnan Darwish, Shaykh Abdurrahman Arjan, Shaykh Hussain Darwish and Shaykh Muhammad Darwish.

In late 2008 he moved to Amman, Jordan, where he continued his studies for the next six years, in Fiqh, Usul al-Fiqh, Theology, Hadith Methodology and Commentary, Shama’il, and Logic with teachers such as Dr Ashraf Muneeb, Dr Salah Abu’l-Hajj, Dr Hamza al-Bakri, Shaykh Ahmad Hasanat, Dr Mansur Abu Zina amongst others. He was also given two licences of mastery in the science of Qur’anic recital by Shakh Samir Jabr and Shaykh Yahya Qandil.

His true passion, however, arose in the presence of Shaykh Ali Hani, considered by many to be one of the foremost tafsir scholars of our time who provided him with the keys to the vast knowledge of the Quran. With Shaykh Ali, he was able to study an extensive curriculum of Qur’anic Sciences, Tafsir, Arabic Grammar, and Rhetoric.

When he finally left Jordan for the UK in 2014, Shaykh Ali gave him his distinct blessing and still recommends students in the UK to seek out Shaykh Abdul-Rahim for Quranic studies. Since his return he has trained as a therapist and has helped a number of people overcome emotional and psychosomatic issues. He is a keen promoter of emotional and mental health.

How to Protect My Heart While Having a Job and so On?

Answered by Shaykh Farid Dingle

Question: Assalamu alaykum

Almost a year ago I had severe doubts that led me to learn more about Allah. While searching I came across Sufism and this led me to practice seclusion. And alhamdulillah I got rewarded by Allah with the sweetness of faith and being present with him. Bbut as the time went by the pressure from my family grew that I needed to get a job and so on. I did go out and 2 months later I noticed that i was getting away from Allah little by little until I forgot how it felt back then.

What can I do to protect my heart while working and so on?

Answer: Wa alaykum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

Your experience is classic of anyone journeying to Allah. The goal is that all our moments, be they in solitude or with others, in war or peace, weal or woe, it is the same. As some have put it, ‘To be with Allah without any relation.’

To become like this, we need to change inside. This process of change is called the spiritual path.

Normally the spiritual path happens at the hands of a guide (murshid/pir). This is someone who has gone through the same problems and navigated the same issues at the hands of guide himself, and so on up to the Messenger of Allah. Such traditions of guidance are called paths (tariqas).

Each path varies, but generally speaking they work by focussing on dhikr (remembrance of Allah) in various formulae, mudhakara (lessons with one’s guide) and jihad al-nafs (working against one’s bad tendencies to perfect one good ones). Through this process, if faithfully observed, a change happens over the years and one appreciation and awareness of Allah deepens such that one no longer becomes headless of him anymore.

I pray this helps.

Wassalam,
[Shaykh] Farid Dingle

Shaykh Farid Dingle grew up in a convert family in Herefordshire, UK. In 2007, he moved to Jordan to pursue traditional studies. Shaykh Farid continues to live in Amman, Jordan with his wife and kids. In addition to continuing his studies he teaches Arabic and several of the Islamic sciences.

Shaykh Farid began his journey in sacred knowledge with intensives in the UK and Jordan (2004) in Shafi’i fiqh and Arabic. After years of studying Arabic grammar, Shafi’i fiqh, hadith, legal methodology (usul al-fiqh) and tafsir, Sh. Farid began specializing in Arabic language and literature. Sh. Farid studied Pre-Islamic poetry, Umayyad, Abbasid, Fatimid, and Andalusian literature. He holds a BA in Arabic Language and Literature and continues exploring the language of the Islamic tradition.

In addition to his interest in the Arabic language Shaykh Farid actively researches matters related to jurisprudence (fiqh) which he studied with Shaykh Hamza Karamali, Shaykh Ahmad Hasanat, and continues with Shaykh Amjad Rasheed. 

Acquisition of the Clear Light: Part 5

This is the fifth part of a series of translations of Habib Umar’s work, Qabs al-Nur al-Mubin, an abridgement of Imam al-Ghazali’s Ihya Ulum al-Din.

 

Obligatory precaution against the devil’s overpowering of the heart and the prevention of his entrances therein.

Know that the heart is like a pitched dome with doors through which concerns enter, and similarly like a target of which arrows from various directions are aimed towards, so the point of entry for these renewed influences are either external, through the five senses or internal, through imagination, desire, anger and natural traits within man’s composition.

The most notable of acquired influences within the heart are spiritual promptings, through the medium of thoughts and reflections which are its acquirement’s of knowledge by means of renewal or recall, which is called spiritual promptings, as a prompting takes place preceded by the hearts ignorance of it. So the base of actions are spiritual promptings, these spiritual promptings then awaken the desire, the desire awakens the resolve, the resolve awakens the intention and the intention awakens the limbs.

These are divided between that which calls to evil, of which is what is ultimately harmful and that which calls to goodness, of which is what is of benefit in the Final Abode. So these are 2 varying spiritual promptings, the good of which is called an inspiration and the bad of which is called a whisper. As long as the end result varies, it’s is an indication of the varying of its respective cause.

The agent of a good spiritual prompting is angelic and the agent of an evil spiritual prompting is demonic. The subtlety which equips the heart to accept a good inspiration is called harmonization and that which equips it to accept a demonic whisper is called deception and failure. An angel is an epitome of a creation which Allah Most High brought into existence, its role is the outpouring of goodness, benefiting by knowledge, revealing truth, counseling towards good, enjoining the good and this was the purpose for it being created and facilitated. A devil is an epitome of a creation which has an opposing role to that which is that of counseling towards evil, commanding immorality, to cause despair by means of distress, when considering to embark upon goodness.

A demonic whisper is opposite to inspiration, a devil is opposite to an angel, harmonization is opposite to failure, Allah Most high says: And of everything we have created pairs.” (Sura ad-Dhariyat 51:49). All matters have pairs except Allah Most High, as He is unique without a pair, in fact, He is the one, the Real who created all the pairs.

The heart is attracted towards the devil or the angel. He (SAW) said, : “In the heart there are 2 callings. A call from the angel promising goodness and belief of the Truth, so whoever amongst you finds this then know that it is from Allah Most High, so show gratitude to Him and a call from the devil promising evil, disbelief of the Truth and forbidding goodness, so whoever amongst you finds this should seek refuge in Allah Most High from the Devil.” Thereafter he recited His words: “Satan promises you with poverty and orders you to commit what is indecent, but Allah promises you His Forgiveness and bounty from Him. Allah is the Embracer, the Knower.” (Sura al-Baqarah 2:268)

Regarding the attraction towards these 2 dominating factors, He (SAW) said: “The heart of a believer is between the two fingers of Allah the Most Exalted.” Mujaahid mentioned regarding His statement: “From the mischief of the Whisperer who withdraws. It is spread out within the heart, upon him remembering Allah, it withdraws and shrinks and if he is unmindful, it spreads out within the heart.” Regarding their difference, Allah Most High says: “The Evil One has got the better of them: so he has made them lose the remembrance of Allah.” (Sura 58:19) Ibn Wadhaah said regarding the narration he mentioned: If a man reaches the age of 40 without repenting, the devil wipes his face with his hand and says: By my father, a face which will not succeed. By this, the meaning of a whispering, a spiritual prompting, an angel, a devil, harmonization and failure all become clear.

So it’s upon the servant to acquaint himself with every affair that comes to mind to know whether it’s an angelic calling or a satanic calling and to eagerly examine it with an insightful eye, without any caprice from the natural disposition, which is only perceived through the light of God-consciousness, insight and abundance of knowledge as He Most High says: “Those who fear Allah, when a thought of evil from Satan assaults them, make remembrance.” (Sura 7:201) Which means that they return to the light of knowledge. “At once, they have insight.” (Sura 7:201) Which means that the problem becomes manifest to them. As for the person who has not accustomed his self towards God-Consciousness, his nature is inclined towards the obedience of what has deceived him through the following of his caprice, and as a result, his mistakes are many and his destruction is brought near without him noticing.


Translator: Abdullah Salih, converted to Islam in 2003 and thereafter, embarked on a journey of seeking knowledge in the Valleys of Hadramouth in the beautiful city of Tarim. He was fortunate enough to sit in the company of Habib Umar, where he studied under him various sciences such as, but not limited to, some of the original works of Ihya as well that of the abridgment. He now resides in Namibia with his family and is engaged in Dawah activities locally as well as internationally.


Do Emotions and Hormonal Fluctuations Affect the Soul?

Answered by Shaykh Jamir Meah

Question: Assalamu alaykum

Could you explain how the soul(nafs) is related to emotions /feelings. Do hormonal fluctuations play about in the nafs and negative emotions?

Many women experience emotional ups and downs / or emotional numbness as side affects from hormonal/contraceptive pill use.

I have not been able to find anything from the Ulimah advising on contraceptive pill use from a purely spiritual perspective. Do you have any recommendations?

Would it be wise for a woman to take long term prescribed hormonal therapy or contraceptive pills if hormones negatively affect the nafs and make it harder for her in purifying her soul?

Answer: Wa’alaykum assalam, I pray you’re well insha’Allah.

Emotions are directly connected to the nafs (ego, self, or psyche), which according to many scholars, is itself one facet of the ruh (the spirit or soul), or we may say it is one term used for the ruh depending on its context. Scholars have stated that the ruh is the governing principle (mudabbir) of the human, which overlooks and controls his body and being.

Emotions and the Nafs

The nafs, which can translate as the self or ego, generally refers to the tendencies of man which are controlled by emotions and desires, such as passion, anger, despair, selfishness etc. Though not always, in the Quran, the word ‘nafs’ is commonly used to describe the soul when it inclines towards or succumbs to various emotional states and lower desires, such as,

إِنَّ النَّفْسَ لَأَمَّارَةٌ بِالسُّوءِ

‘Indeed, the soul is a persistent enjoiner of evil’ [12:53]

However, while the nafs / ego may cause one to fall into sin by arousing powerful emotions which sway one towards fulfilling desires, whether sins of the limb or sins of the heart, it also has the potential to rise above the base emotions and inclinations through a series of stages, first by incriminating itself after having done wrong, then becoming inspired to do good, until it reaches a goodly state, referred to by God, when He says,

يَا أَيَّتُهَا النَّفْسُ الْمُطْمَئِنَّةُ ارْجِعِي إِلَىٰ رَبِّكِ رَاضِيَةً مَّرْضِيَّةً

O reassured soul, return to your Lord, well-pleased and pleasing [89:27-28]

[Ihya Ulum al Din, Hashiyat al Sawi, Adab al Nufus, Tafsir al Razi, Al-Jami’ li Ahkam al Quran, al Risalah al Qushayriyyah]

Chemical medicine

While you may not have come across anything specifically mentioning the affect the contraceptive pills may have on the nafs or soul, it is well established that what we physically ingest into our bodies can have deep ramifications upon the soul and spiritual works.

Food, which can be both a medicine or a poison, is a simple example of how the physical intake into the body can affect the higher levels of man’s constitution. ‘A’isha (may Allah be pleased with her) is reported to have said, ‘Verily, the first trial to occur in this nation after the passing of its Prophet ﷺ, was people eating to their fill. For when people fill their stomachs, their bodies are fattened, their hearts are hardened, and their desires are uncontrollable.’ (al Ju’ – ibn Abi Dunya). Notice how the process described starts with physical matter (food) entering into our physical body, which leads to physical health issues, which in turn is followed by a spiritual hardening of the heart, which results in the increase of passions for base desires.

Conversely, good, wholesome, and lawful food can have a beneficial effect on one’s actions and spiritual works, if eaten in moderation.

As such, there is no reason to not assume that intake of medicinal matters, whether chemical or natural, can have a beneficial or negative impact on the soul, and consequently emotions.

Unfortunately, many medicinal drugs prescribed today have the ability to do more harm than good, and often cause much turmoil in the physical, psychological and spiritual levels of a person. This is partly because of the chemical interaction of the drug with the chemistry of the body, as well as the fact that most drugs treat disease against the natural flow of the body, which itself has a defense and healing mechanism, and these drugs are often so powerful and contra-acting, they deeply suppress this innate mechanism.

In summary then, anything we ingest, whether food or medicine, can have a direct effect on our spiritual plane. In the same way that over eating or bad eating habits, or over sleeping and bad sleeping habits, can affect our mental and emotional states, they can also affect our spiritual states. The human being is one being composed of interconnected parts. It is not possible for one thing to be affected without affecting the other. This is why spiritual masters have always tended on the side of scrupulousness when it comes to ingesting anything into the physical body, because of the potential effects it may have on the spiritual level.

The Contraceptive Pill and Hormone Therapy

The ancient Greek word for the womb or uterus is ‘hysteria’, and this suggests emotional and nervous vulnerability, particularly anxiety, nervousness and irritability. The womb is a vital aspect of a woman’s being, and the ovary and uterus are part of the female endocrine system (the system that produces and secretes hormones), and the menstrual cycle is a regulatory function which provides important hormones to the body to keep it in health.

Therefore, it goes without saying that any treatments involving this area must work with the body and seek to preserve the natural order and maintenance of the female body. Removal of the uterus or introducing chemical suppressants is hazardous.

The short time side effects of such products and therapies alone, including mood changes and emotional fluctuation, reduced chance of future pregnancy, and abnormal menstrual cycles are enough to suggest woman should not turn to them as a first choice.

Given the above, it would not be recommended for women to stay on the contraceptive pills or undergo hormone related therapies for long periods of time. This applies to women on a spiritual path or those who are not. While of course every case is different and one must refer to a qualified physician in each individual scenario, generally, women should avoid these options even in the short term unless necessary or for very brief use.

Alternatives

There are numerous natural alternatives one may make use of, if not better, as many natural therapies work with the body, not against it. Depending on the reason for taking the contraceptive pill or hormone therapy, one could explore various natural options such as the billings method for contraception, and seed cycling for hormonal, menstrual balance and fertility. Also, one could explore therapies such as homeopathy, herbal, or Chinese medicine as all round balancing therapies.

In regards contraception, it would also be a good idea to explore male contraception rather than female contraception.

Summary

In summary then, emotional and hormonal imbalance is connected to the nafs, in the sense that what affects one physically or emotionally has the potential to affect spiritual works. Subsequently, foods and therapies that negatively interfere with the natural order of hormonal balance should be avoided.

I pray this helps,

Warmest salams,
[Shaykh] Jamir Meah

Shaykh Jamir Meah grew up in Hampstead, London. In 2007, he traveled to Tarim, Yemen, where he spent nine years studying the Islamic sciences on a one-to-one basis under the foremost scholars of the Ribaat, Tarim, with a main specialization and focus on Shafi’i fiqh. In early 2016, he moved to Amman, Jordan, where he continues advanced studies in a range of Islamic sciences, as well as teaching. Jamir is a qualified homeopath.

Nasheed Hub: Talama Ashku Gharami

The Nasheed Hub, an initiative of SeekersHub Global, aims to showcase the traditional Islamic art of nasheed, or Islamic devotional songs.

Talama Ashku Gharami

Talama Ashku Gharami, or “How Long Will My Heart Ache,” is a heartfelt Nasheed that may can relate to. One of the less-appreciated poems, it speaks directly to the soul.

The author is experiencing heartache. However, it is not a wordly or romantic pain. Rather than wishing for a loved one, he is longing for the ultimate goal; to attain unto Allah, and see the Prophet, Allah bless him and give him peace.

He asks when his pain will stop, saying, “How long will my heart ache for my Beloved?” He addresses the Prophet as the one from Tiham (an area that includes the cities of Mecca and Medina). He goes on, speaking about his utmost desire to attain the vision, and see the door of Paradise. He concludes by asking Allah, to grant goodness with goodness.
[pdf-embedder url=”https://seekersguidance.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/talama.pdf”]

About Nasheed Hub

Throughout the decades and civilizations of Islam, the vocal tradition, sometimes known as nasheed or devotional songs, were penned as a way of celebrating and giving thanks to Allah for the message of Islam, as well as for the Messenger himself.
These nasheeds were a way for people to turn towards their Lord in joyful celebration, rather than stringent routine. They were also tools to spread the message of Islam in a non-confrontational way. These nasheeds were able to reach out to those who were alienated or indifferent to the religion and the Muslim community, as well as to teach children who were too young for academic study.
These nasheeds originating from all corners of the Muslim world – from West Africa to Malaysia, from Turkey to Great Britian – mirror their own culture but all carry a common thread: love of Allah and His Messenger.
This series will explore the different nasheeds, penned by some of the great historical Muslim figures, poets, and scholars.


Resources for Seekers

 

Why Can’t I Find Peace and Contentness in My Heart?

Answered by Shaykh Riad Saloojee

Question: Assalamu alaykum

I am struggling to find peace in my heart now. I have been divorced 5 years ago on no fault of my own.

Since then I have struggled to find that peace in my heart. 5 years on and I am in search of a decent spouse. I sometimes feel that I am being constantly judged on the fact that I have been divorced when it wasn’t even my fault. This is breaking me completely and now I am so lost that all I see is darkness.

Why can’t I find peace and contentness in my heart now?

Answer:Wa’alaykumsalam wa rahmatullah wa barakaatu,

I pray you are well, by Allah’s grace. What follows is a general answer, without regard to specific details that I do not have.

It appears your lack of peace of mind and heart is connected to your difficulty in finding a compatible spouse.

I would remind myself and my sister to always keep in mind that Allah created every aspect of life to test us, purify our hearts, reveal us to ourselves and draw us nearer to Him.

It is important to keep your difficult situation within this Islamic spiritual understanding. It is Allah’s decree that your finding of a spouse has been delayed. Through that, you are tested, purified, will be led to a deeper understanding of yourself and, Allah willing, draw closer to Him.

As you continue, know that your patience and surrender to Allah is a tremendous act of worship. Allah teaches: “Surely, those who practice patience will be rewarded without measure” [Qur’an: 39:10].

Your future spouse is a rizq, or provision, not unlike material provision. While you seek a spouse, know that your actions will not produce the result or guarantee it. It will come when and how Allah decrees.

If we do not surrender in patience to Allah’s decree, the inner difficulty that we experience can be far more bitter than the difficulty of patience. Allah knows your limits. With hardship, there will be ease.

I would advise my sister to seek nearness and strength from Allah with much supplication (du’a).

Your brother,
[Shaykh] Riad Saloojee

Shaykh Riad Saloojee graduated and taught in an Islamic seminary in Cape Town, South Africa.  He is a lawyer by training and worked in the field of civil rights advocacy. Currently, he teaches and translates.

Do I Have to Take a Shaykh to Cure My Heart?

Answered by Shaykh Abdul-Rahim Reasat

Question: Assalamu alaykum

I recently realized that my nafs is enticing me mostly with evil thoughts (arrogance, pride, competing with Allah, I can do what Allah can do). It started with whisper 5 months ago. How to train my nafs in this condition? Is this necessary to work under a sheikh or a sufi?

Answer: Wa ‘alaykum as-salam wa rahmatullah wa barakatuh

Thank you for your question. Firstly, this realisation that you have had is a huge blessing from Allah Himself. One of the righteous one remarked that ‘When Allah wants good for a servant He makes him aware of his faults so the servant can repent from them.’ You should thank Allah for this and turn to Him seeking His help in getting over this hurdle.

It is superior to resort to a master of Islamic Spirituality in matters of purification of the heart, as he is usually someone who has experienced and overcome the challenges people face on the path to drawing closer to Allah, and an external observer usually sees things which you may not. The first step, however, is to ground yourself in the knowledge you need to practice your religion, and you may find that many of your issues fall away due to the blessings of Sacred Knowledge. Thereafter, if you feel inclined to finding a teacher of Tasawwuf you should ask Allah by means of the Prayer of Need (Salah al-Haja) and the Prayer of Choosing and Facilitation (Salah al-Istikhara). Allah, out of His tremendous generosity, will show you someone who is right for you.

The first thing to do with an unwanted, intrusive thought is to not identify with it and to hate the feeling of arrogance, competing with Allah etc, in your heart. You should sincere repent from the thought and dismiss it if it returns. The best solution is ignore them after that and should go away. Focusing on them and worrying about them is a means of empowering them.

If they persist regardless, you may have a mild form of OCD which can be remedied through basic therapy. An effective, and easy therapy is E.F.T. (Emotional Freedom Technique); it can be learned by anyone in a few minutes and many a time the issues will disappear fairly quickly. If the issue is deeper then you should consider finding a practitioner and wprking through the issue with.

May Allah facilitate for you all the means to attaining His pleasure.

Wassalam,
[Shaykh] Abdul-Rahim Reasat

Shaykh Abdul-Rahim Reasat began his studies in Arabic Grammar and Morphology in 2005. After graduating with a degree in English and History he moved to Damascus in 2007 to study and sit at the feet of some of the most erudite scholars of our time.

Over the following eighteen months he studied a traditional curriculum, studying with scholars such as Shaykh Adnan Darwish, Shaykh Abdurrahman Arjan, Shaykh Hussain Darwish and Shaykh Muhammad Darwish.

In late 2008 he moved to Amman, Jordan, where he continued his studies for the next six years, in Fiqh, Usul al-Fiqh, Theology, Hadith Methodology and Commentary, Shama’il, and Logic with teachers such as Dr Ashraf Muneeb, Dr Salah Abu’l-Hajj, Dr Hamza al-Bakri, Shaykh Ahmad Hasanat, Dr Mansur Abu Zina amongst others. He was also given two licences of mastery in the science of Qur’anic recital by Shakh Samir Jabr and Shaykh Yahya Qandil.

His true passion, however, arose in the presence of Shaykh Ali Hani, considered by many to be one of the foremost tafsir scholars of our time who provided him with the keys to the vast knowledge of the Quran. With Shaykh Ali, he was able to study an extensive curriculum of Qur’anic Sciences, Tafsir, Arabic Grammar, and Rhetoric.

When he finally left Jordan for the UK in 2014, Shaykh Ali gave him his distinct blessing and still recommends students in the UK to seek out Shaykh Abdul-Rahim for Quranic studies. Since his return he has trained as a therapist and has helped a number of people overcome emotional and psychosomatic issues. He is a keen promoter of emotional and mental health.