Ever had a heart and mind conflict?
...'But my Heart says one thing and my Mind says another!'
That's what we always end up saying when we're trying to make a decision or thinking about some next steps in our life.
We fail to see the heart and mind as two separate organs doing different things and functioning in different ways.
Yes ultimately they are linked - the entire system is linked and that is why we are functioning properly.
But there are some fundamental differences between the two.
I know you Scientists are going to love this because I'm the Legal Eagle and I'm disregarding probably everything you've learnt at Med/Science School. Sorry folks! But y'all know I see things differently lol!
...The mind does what you tell it or ask it. It's like a computer. If you ask your mind; 'Why am I unsuccessful' then it will go and look for all the proof and answers to back up your question and tell you why you're unsuccessful. But if you ask; 'Why am I successful or how can I be more successful?' Then it will go and look for all the proofs to answer your question.
Yes the mind is an organ which needs exercise. So please read, read a lot - daily - give it a mental training and sharpen it. It does come in handy with those questions and we do need it so look after your mind and feed it with nutrients - not junk! (I'm not disregarding it - I love the mind because its all about the subconscious, conscious, thoughts, belief systems etc!).
But today we're talking just about the heart - its a complete different ball game.
See the heart 'KNOWS!'
It knows the answer deep within and it knows that we know!
Yet we fail to listen to it.
Because we are human. Because we are afraid. Because we have fears. Because we don't want to fall or fail. The list goes on.
But what we don't realise is that we do more damage than good when we don't listen to it.
We say our heart says one thing and our mind another so we should listen to the mind as the heart comes from an emotional place so it will always make us soft and squiggly and we will end up making wrong decisions.
Have you ever made a decision from your heart? How did it feel? What were the emotions?
What if we trained our heart with goodness, nourished it with goodness and worked on purifying it? Would we still listen to it or ignore it?
Would we put full trust in Allah that He (swt) will pour goodness into our heart and guide us to goodness or are we going to give into our fears (which come from belief systems - the mind)?
We are spiritual beings on a human journey. The heart is part of our spiritualness. Not the physical heart - but the spiritual heart.
If we all went for heart examinations and cut open our chest the heart will not show the deep evilness on the surface.
That's because that is part of our spiritualness. Just the way we can't see our soul - we can't see the spiritual heart.
How does the heart become evil?
Well, we are responsible for that. We feed it with constant jealousy, envy, anger, backbitting, slander and the list goes on.
Allah (swt) says; 'Nay! But on their hearts is the Raan (covering of sins and evil deeds) which they used to earn" (83:14).
So what does this mean?
The Prophet of Allah (peace be upon him) said, “When the believer commits sin, a black spot appears on his heart. If he repents and gives up that sin and seeks forgiveness, his heart will be polished. But if (the sin) increases, (the black spot) increases. That is the raan which Allah mentions in His Book: ‘Nay! But on their hearts is the Raan (covering of sins and evil deeds) which they used to earn’ .” Al-Tirmithi
The purifying of the heart is a constant and daily journey.
I guess you can say it's a bit like eating food daily and drinking water daily. We need this nourishment for our body to function properly.
We need to feed our heart daily and cleanse it daily.
Some of the basic stuff that we can do - because again this is such a deep topic that its for the scholars to delve into - pray our Salaah daily on time, read Qur'an, listen to tilawah, study the tafsir of the Qur'an - constantly remember Allah - which is also dhikr-Allah.
Yes I know its a struggle. I do struggle too and sometimes I think why?! - Especially when everything was going ok - but its because we are human and this life is a test - we have to go through these daily tests.
The Prophet (pbuh) said; "In the body there is a morsel of flesh and when it is sound the whole body is sound and when it is corrupt the whole body is corrupt. Verily it is the heart." Bukhari and Muslim
So we need to rid it off the jealousy and envy - these two are constant bad companions. They are like best friends! We get jealous and envious of others lives and achievements - even if someone gets married and they are happy, people will have something to say about it!
We need to stop corrupting our heart and if we continue then our heart will become black - full of raan and it will become dead - dead to emotions - dead to feelings - you know, cold heartedness? (yup, we've heard that before!).
So what now?
Here's today's Tips and Action Points:
1. Make a conscious decision and hand your heart over to Allah. Ask Allah (swt) to guide it always and to help you in everything.
2. Start listening to it - listen to your gut - you know 'gut feeling?'. Trust me, you'll have this fluttery feeling in your heart and you'll know.
3. Make a plan to start purifying your heart. Yes this is going to be difficult but we're all in this together and we can do it - with Allah's help we can! If we have a constant feeling/emotion/trait like jealousy - then firstly we need to find out why we have it, recognise it, see the shortcoming on our part and then fix it!
When you start making these small but constant changes you'll notice the inner peace within you and you'll notice how you consult your heart more and you'll notice how you're consciously asking Allah to guide you to the answer. Try it!
If we fix our relationship with Allah then we won't fear listening to the heart. Maybe we know the answer and we actually understand what the heart is saying but we don't want to listen to it (like don't go to that specific place as there is haraam there but we rebel and do it anyway!).
As I always say to all my loved ones; 'Listen to YOUR heart. Hand it over to Allah and ask Him to help you and guide you - because He'll put the answer in your heart!'
We need to remember that what will help us on the Day of Judgement is not our worldly successes but a sound heart.
As the Prophet (pbuh) said; "Allah does not look towards your bodies nor toward your appearances but looks towards your heart." Muslim
Its time for us to fix up our hearts insha'Allah.
And listen to your heart - because it KNOWS! :)
Nadia Leona Yunis