All praise belongs to Allah. May His peace and blessings be upon the beloved prophet, his households and the companions.
One major aspect of Islam is the purification of the self through divine awareness, filtering the senses from evil, restraining the soul and purifying the heart. Self-reform and purification of one’s soul is a prerequisite for closeness to Allah. Indeed, the whole point of morality and spirituality is to purify one’s soul. It is only then that the soul starts glittering, receiving and reflecting utmost radiation and light from Allah
(Continued … Part 2)
6 . SUPPLICATING TO ALLAH.
We must call Allah and implore Him to help us purify ourselves. The Prophet (SallAllahu Alaihi Wa Sallam) used to pray,
“O Allah! Grant me the sense of piety and purify my soul as You are the Best to purify it. You are its Guardian and its Protecting Friend.”
7 . DOING AS MANY VOLUNTARY ACTS OF WORSHIP AS WE CAN.
Allah says in the Hadith Qudsi,
“…and my servant will keep trying to get closer to me till I love him…”
8 . PONDERING THE QUR’AN’an BECAUSE THE QUR’AN CLEANSES THE HEARTS:
The Prophet (SallAllahu Alaihi Wa Sallam) says,
“The hearts get rusty just like metal and this rust can never go out except by reading the Qur’an and by remembering death.”
“This is a blessed Book which We sent down to you [Muhammad], for people to ponder over its messages, and for those with understanding to take heed.”
9. BEING PATIENT AND HAVING CONVICTION IN ALLAH:
Patience defeats lust and steps between us and our sins. It also keeps us steadfast on acts of obedience so self-purification (expelling and adorning) cannot be attained except by patience. Allah says,
“Truly, those who persevere patiently will be requited without measure.'”
Having conviction in Allah keeps us steadfast in the face of our demons and with both these two qualities we can acquire the Imamate (leadership) in religion. Allah says,َ
“We appointed leaders from among them, guiding by Our command when they were steadfast and when they had firm faith in Our signs.”
10. SLEEPING, EATING AND TALKING LESS:
One of the things that help a lot with self-purification is cutting down on all these three. Too much talk without remembering Allah hardens the heart and the farthest from Allah are those who have hard hearts. Too much eating increases the lusts and gives more channels for Satan to infiltrate our souls. Last but not least too much eating leads to too much sleeping and this latter makes us lazy and wastes our age. It was said, “He who eats much drinks much water and sleeps much; so he wastes a lot of time.”
Finally, the reform of one’s own self starts with the struggle against satanic desires and the effort to refrain from sin.
The Prophet (SallAllahu Alaihi Wa Sallam) said:
“The struggler is the one who strives against his soul/self in obedience to God, the Mighty and Majestic.”
[At-Tirmidhi, Ibn Majah, Ibn Hibban, Tabarani, Hakim, etc.]
… Sufyan ath-Thawri said:
“I never dealt with anything stronger against me than my own soul/self; it was one time with me, and one time against me”
… Yahya ibn Mu’ adh ar-Razi said:
“Fight against your soul/self with the four swords of training: eat little, sleep little, speak little, and be patient when people harm you.”
… Then the soul/self will walk the paths of obedience, like a fleeing horseman in the field of battle.