Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem
By Hazrat Maulana Yunus Patel Saheb (Rahmatullahi ‘alayh)
Unfortunately, the majority do not see any need for Islaah (reformation) of the nafs and Tazkiyyah (purification) of the Qalb (heart). This is generally ignored – as if superfluous and unnecessary. Yet, how extremely important it is! Success and failure depends on the spiritual condition of a person.
Allah Ta’ala says:
قَدْ أَفْلَحَ مَنْ زَكّٰهَا
“Indeed he succeeds who purifies his ownself.”
وَ قَدْ خَابَ مَنْ دَسّٰهَا
“And indeed he fails who corrupts his ownself.”
[Surah Ash-Shams 91 : 9 /10]
Our understanding of success and failure is based on a person’s worldly and material status. Allah Ta’ala gives no consideration to the worldly and material status because His Criteria is Taqwa.
“Indeed, the most noble of you in the sight of Allah is the most righteous of you. Indeed, Allah is All-Knowing and All-Acquainted.”
[Surah Al-Hujuraat 49 : 13]
Allah Ta’ala’s gaze is on our hearts.
Rasulullah (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) said: “Verily Allah does not look towards your physical appearances or towards your riches; but He sees (the sincerity of) your hearts and (the nature of) your deeds.”
When the heart is neglected, it becomes corrupted. It is corrupted by Ghaflat (heedlessness) and sins. Rasulullah (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) said: “There is a piece of flesh in the body, if it becomes good (reformed) the whole body becomes good but if it gets corrupted, the whole body gets corrupted – and that is the heart.”
Then this corruption will be found in the eyes – the person will be casting lustful gazes, reading Haraam, viewing Haraam, etc.; it will be found in the tongue – the person will be swearing, lying and deceiving; it will be found in the hands – the person will be stealing and using his hands for other injustices; it will be found in the feet – the person will be using his feet and walking in the direction of the gambling dens, cinemas, rave clubs, prostitute quarters and other evil, filthy places. This corruption will be found in all actions. May Allah Ta’ala purify us all and protect us all.
A corrupted heart makes the person a problem wherever he is.
In his marriage, he will be a disappointment and perhaps even a curse for his wife.
In business, he is a problem for those who deal with him.
If he is a Musalli at a Masjid, he will be a headache for the Imaam; he will be a headache for the Muazzin; he will be a headache for the other Musallees who frequent the Masjid …because of the spiritual diseases in his heart; because there is corruption in the heart.
If he goes for Hajj, he will be a problem on the plane, a problem in Mina and Arafaat. He will trouble and harrass people everywhere.
People will even say: The sooner he departs from this world, the better. …Because the spiritual heart is diseased.
The purification of the heart is something we have totally neglected and this is where effort is most required. Moreover, there are numerous diseases and sicknesses related directly to the spiritual heart.
...The physical heart is not a problem. If a person dies of a heart attack or some other sickness, Allah Ta’ala will not question the person in this regard.
The root cause of all the problems in the society is due to the spiritual diseases of the heart : pride, arrogance, jealousy, malice, greed, evil desires and passions, etc. Each disease requires either some kind of prescription or in the extreme case, an “operation” of the spiritual heart.
My Shaykh, Hazrat Maulana Hakeem Muhammad Akhtar Saheb (Rahmatullahi ‘alayh) said in one of his poems (the explanation of which is):
"If you are a little sick or physically weak,
you listen to the advice of the doctor.
You do not ask the doctor for ‘Daleel’ (proof) in respect to his prescription.
…You have trust in his advice.
If you are sick, then no matter how bitter the medication,
you will take it, because you want cure.
…You are very concerned when it comes to your body,
which will one day decompose and turn to dust.
Where is the concern for your Deen?
Your heart and soul, the ‘body’ of your Deen, is afflicted with cancer
- the cancer of sins.
Since you do not restrain yourself from Haraam,
the heart and soul have become very weak and sick.
When it comes to the things of the world,
your intelligence seems to have no limits.
When it comes to your Deen, death seems to have
overcome that intelligence."
You believe in the advice of doctors and specialists, what then of the advice, prescription and ‘medication’ given by Rasulullah (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam), for the health and well-being of your Deen?
There is the possibility that doctors are inaccurate in their diagnosis. There are no such inaccuracies or mistakes in the advice and teachings of Rasulullah (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) – because he did not say anything on his own accord. Everything was an inspiration from Allah Ta’ala.
وَمَا يَنْطِقُ عَنِ الْهَوٰى ؕ إِنْ هُوَ إِلَّا وَحْيٌ يُّوْحٰى ۙ
“Nor does he speak of (his own) desire. It is only an Inspiration that is inspired.”
[Surah Najm 53 : 3/4]
Far more than the attention that is given to our physical body, attention needs to be given to the spiritual heart and the soul.
This does not mean that we neglect our physical health. Health is a bounty and trust from Allah Ta’ala, and we should take care of it. This is also an order of Allah Ta’ala.
It is the responsibility of every person to give attention to his spiritual reformation, to the purification of the heart and to treating the sicknesses of the soul for good spiritual health. Just as physician diagnoses and treats physical ailments, so a spiritual doctor – a Shaykh-e-Kaamil – diagnoses and treats spiritual ailments. It is thus necessary to choose a spiritual doctor and follow through with his advice and his treatment.
The choice of the spiritual doctor or Shaykh has to be a careful one – especially considering these times where there are many bogus and money-making people in the guise of peers.
The Shaykh must be learned, pious, practical on Deen, and acknowledged by the people of learning – i.e. those on Haq (Truth), and entrusted by a Shaykh-e-Kaamil to carry out Tazkiyyah through Khilafah.
The meeting with Allah Ta’ala is inevitable. No one can avoid this meeting. Let it be a meeting where we are pleased to meet Him and He is pleased to meet us! Let it be that we work towards meeting Allah Ta’ala with a sound heart (Qalb-e-Saleem) and a clean heart. This will invite the real and true success of both worlds.
May Allah Ta’ala grant us the concern and the Taufeeq of implementing the teachings of Deen and Shari’ah, and of purifying our hearts and souls.
 Sahih Muslim
 Sahih Bukhari
 Tazkiyya : Purification of the soul
 Khilafah : approved spiritual representative of the Shaykh