Ask Your Heart

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Ask Your Heart

Say: "This is my way: I call to Allah through insight, I and whoever follows me." (Verse 108 Surah Yusuf)

Since the Glorious Qur'an regards the heart of a human being as an instrument of understanding, is it then not true that the Divine Message of Truth is addressed to the heart? The Most Glorious Qur'an – the  heavenly revealed Book of Haqq explains in great detail the purification of oneself, purity, enlightenment, and the purification of the heart. We are reminded in verses 9 and 10 of Surah Ash-Shams: "Undoubtedly, the one who purified it has succeeded and the one who soiled it has certainly failed." And in verse 14 of Surah Al Mutaffifin we are told: " Never! In fact, the rust of their sins has covered their hearts."


The heart of a human being, as created by Almighty Allah Y, is pure and unsullied. Every time a human does an ill deed, it marks a stain or rust on his or her heart. But on repentance, such a stain is washed away. If there is no repentance, the stains deepen and spread more and more until the heart is sealed [verse 7 of Surah Al-Baqara], and eventually the person dies a spiritual death. Such stains stand in the way of his or her perceiving truths which are obvious to others. This is why such a person mocks at truth and hugs falsehood to his or her bosom. The stain of evil deeds on their hearts sullies the mirror of their hearts, so that it does not receive the light. At Judgement, the true light, the glory of Almighty Allah, the joy of the righteous, will be hidden by veils from the eyes of the sinful. Instead, the fire of punishment will be to them the only reality which they will perceive. The Qur'an then informs us about the salvation  and enlightenment of the heart in verse 29 of Surah Al Anfal:

"O you who believe! If you fear Allah, He will grant you a criterion (to judge between right and wrong)."

And in verse 69 of Surah Al Ankabut, Allah's promise has been made crystal clear: "And those who strive in Our (cause) – We will certainly guide them to Our paths: For verily Allah is with those who do right."


The Qur'an repeatedly reminds us that indecencies infect and darken the human soul, and deprive the human heart of sublime inclinations and virtuous tendencies. At one place, speaking on behalf of the believers, it informs us in verse 8 of Surah Āle-Imrān: "Our Lord! (they say), Let not our hearts deviate now after You have guided us."

 

Describing the qualities of the evildoers in numerous verses throughout the Qur'an, Allah Ytells us that the darkness of sin and injustice has engulfed their hearts. In verse 5 of Surah Al Saff, we are told: "When they went wrong, Allah let their hearts go wrong for Allah guides not those who are rebellious transgressors." And in verse 25 of Surah Al An'am: "We have thrown veils on their hearts."
All these verses point to the fact that the Qur'an recommends a sublime, spiritual atmosphere for mankind, and deems it necessary for every individual to strive to keep it clean and unpolluted.

 

In addition, since an unsound social atmosphere renders fruitless the efforts of most individuals to keep pure and wholesome, the Qur'an recommends that we should employ all our endeavours in the direction of purification of our social atmosphere. The Qur'an unequivocally propounds the view that the continued existence of all those sublime values, beliefs and ideas, and continued social receptivity to all its moral advice and counsels, depend upon individual and collective struggle to eradicate all types of meanness, sensuality, and lewdness.

 

Human history itself is witness to the fact that whenever tyrannical regimes have wanted to bring other societies under their autocratic rule, they have tried to corrupt their social spirit and pollute their social atmosphere. They provided enormous facilities for the people to indulge in promiscuity, and gave them every kind of freedom in this regard. A heart-rendering account of this unholy treatment meted out to the Muslims of Spain – a region which is regarded to have played an effective role in initiating the Renaissance, and had the most advanced culture in Europe – throws enough light on this phenomenon.

In order to divest Spain out of Muslims' hands, the Christians resorted to defilement of the morals of Muslim youth, by providing ample facilities for their promiscuity. They even went to the extent of alluring and enticing the army generals and government officials in topmost ranks. They thus succeeded in diverting Muslims from the path of determination and purpose, and in divesting them of their power, their strength of faith, and purity of soul, converting them into profligate weaklings addicted to drinking and promiscuity. It is obvious that it is not very difficult to subdue such individuals.

They took revenge on nearly eight hundred years of Muslim rule in such a way that history is ashamed at recounting those deeds. The same Christians who, according to the teachings of Īsā u"offer your left cheek if your right cheek is slapped", were supposed to behave in a different way, surpassed the bloodthirsty tradition of Genghiz Khan by the massacre of Muslims in Spain. Nevertheless, the ruin that Muslims suffered was the result of their own spiritual degeneration and decay. It was their punishment for abandoning the Quranic commands.

 

In our times, also, wherever the evil of colonialism exists, the very same practices are vigorously adopted – a grave danger which the Qur'an so emphatically warns us. The colonialists try to corrupt the hearts; when the heart is thus debilitated, reason, too, is not only lost and fails to function properly, but is itself turned into a terrible bondage. The colonialists and the exploitive powers are not afraid of establishing schools and universities: they even advocate popular education; but, on the other hand, they take very good care to make arrangements to corrupt and destroy the spirit of the youth, and of the teachers as well.


They are fully aware of the fact that an unhealthy mind and a sickly soul cannot make any decisive move, and readily yield to every type of exploitation and degradation. That is why the Qur'an gives ample importance to the idea of exaltation, elevation, and purity of the soul of society. In verse 2 of Surah Al Ma'idah, Allah commands us with words of wisdom: "Help one another in righteousness and piety, but do not help one another in sin and rancour.”

 

In the above verse, we are firstly enjoined to pursue piety and we are warned against sinning. Secondly, we are asked to perform righteous deeds collectively and to help one another. Nabī epointed out the fact that if a person endeavours to seek reality and truth with an open and impartial mind, his heart can never deceive him in this regard; it will always guide him towards the path of Siratal Mustaqīm (the straight path).

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