Towards a tranquil soul

The process of perfecting one’s character is a necessary precondition to heartfelt devotion. The theory and practice of purifying the heart -spiritual detox- will be investigated through 2 modules, which describe how to free oneself of internal and external blameworthy traits and habits, and acquire those spiritual qualities that are the hallmarks of the Prophets.

Towards a Tranquil Soul 1 Tzk 101-i

Hasan Al Basri said “The tongue of the believer lies behind his heart. When he intends to speak he reflects over it with his heart and only then does he venture to speak.”. [al-Zabidi, Ithaf as-Sadat al-Muttaqin]

The first module will allow students to understand the importance of the science of tazkiyyah (spiritual purification) and how it relates to us as humans. It will also allow students to appreciate how the word ‘qalb’ or ‘heart’ is used differently in various religious sources, and those factors that affect the spiritual health of the heart and the rest of the bodily limbs.

At a glance. Just some of the issues and questions explored.

  • What is the relationship between the physical and the spiritual heart?
  • Where does the brain fit into our understanding of the heart?
  • Can we tell if our heart is sick or healthy?
  • What are the practical steps to achieving taqwa - purity of body and soul?
  • What relationship is there between our limbs and spiritual health?

By the end of this module, students will:

  • Understand the way the human soul functions.
  • Take the first steps to building a lasting connection with the Creator.
  • Focus on the importance of sincerity and taqwa in spiritual life.
  • Take practical steps to give life to the spiritual heart.

Towards a Tranquil Soul 2 Tzk 403-i

“Ahmed al-Zarruq said “Abu Abbas al-Hadrami told me “The predicament is not as to who knows how to remove oneself from the world. Rather it is who knows the manner in which to take hold of it and control it”. I [al-Zarruq] say “This is because it is like a snake, as it is not a great feat that you kill it. What is impressive is to take hold of the snake while it is alive”.  [az-Zaruq, Qawaid]

This follow-on to the first module will analyse the two different sources of the ailments of the heart (shubahat and shahawat) and help students realise why knowing this helps in the understanding of how to cure spiritual diseases. The various ailments that affect the spiritual heart will be pinpointed, with practical tips and techniques that will aid in their cure.

At a glance. Just some of the issues and questions explored.

  • What are the sources of spiritual diseases?
  • How does belief in God relate to such diseases?
  • What are the diseases that affect one’s understanding and belief?
  • The role of the world and its allure in giving rise to spiritual diseases.
  • Spiritual diseases that are connected with the ego or ‘nafs,’ such as vanity and arrogance, and how they come about.
  • What are the most comprehensive treatments for the diseases of the heart?

By the end of this module, students will:

  • Understand how spiritual diseases affect the heart.
  • Observe how what surrounds us affects our spiritual health.
  • Take practical steps to combat personal failings.
  • Be able to create a personal plan for spiritual development.