There are those precious moments…rare and resolute when you feel every beat of your heart; hear the whisper of every breath; see every thought clearly in your mind as if they were boldly printed on a page before your very eyes. It is in these moments that you deeply and truly comprehend the essence of yourself…your precious soul and it is in these moments that its temporary residence, your heart, feels safe, feels sound.
“On that day no wealth nor children will avail you aught, except he who comes to ALLAH with a sound/sincere heart.”(Surah Shu’arah: Verse 87-89)
The first time I truly reflected on this beautiful verse of Al Quraanul Kareem, my heart was moved. A feeling of awe and wonder; a shiver and shudder as my physical body embraced and recognised the truth of the beautiful words of my Rabb-ALLAH as it coursed through my veins like an aneasthetic; calming and soothing as it travelled from sight to mind to tongue to heart and since that day, I find that these words continue to echo endlessly, day in day out…Bi Qalbin Saleem.
Unpacking, understanding, comprehending, reflecting and introspecting on any amazing verse of the Noble Quraan is a journey and task worth undertaking, as there can be no words more greater in impact and value than that of our Rabb; as there can be no way or path better and quicker to gain His Quroob/Proximity than through Al Quraanul Kareem…reading it, memorising it, learning it, understanding it, reflecting upon its revelation, inscribing it upon one’s mind and heart, living it…SubhanALLAH!
Every single rhythmic verse revealed from Lowhul Mahfooz to Baitul ‘Izzah to our Beloved Nabi Muhammad SAW, descended with a pronounced purity and purpose. It is sad and unfortunate that we as Muslims and the Ummah of Muhammad SAW, the lovers and reciters of Al Quraanul Kareem, have not fully attempted to delight in this treasure trove from the Realm wherein resides our Rabb, a Divine opportunity to listen to His Majestic Speech…SubhanALLAH!
Each year when the month of Ramadhaan departs, we physically ache with the loss of it, exactly like the way we feel at the farewell of a loved one whom we yearn and pine for. Yet, we can soothe this ache, with not only the continued attachment to the Quraan but also through continuing with similar and sustained acts of worship, towards Creator and creation, which will undoubtedly leave the heart feeling safe, sound and sincere…indeed the way we need our hearts to be when we meet our Lord on that Great Day…Bi Qalbin Saleem.
“Truly in the body there is a piece of flesh which if it be sound, all the body is sound and if it be diseased, all the body will be diseased. Truly it is the heart, ” shared Muhammad SAW with his companions. (Bukhari) The state of our hearts determine what we do with the ‘ilm and knowledge we attain; how the Quraan and words of Nabi SAW affect our thoughts and emotions; how we are drawn or repelled by sins and if the heart is not sound and not sincere…it will indeed be as the Quraan describes such a heart, one that is sealed. Such a heart is not only closed but sealed to the light of knowledge, the healing and mercy of the Quraan and goodness cannot reach nor penetrate it…ALLAH save us.
The heart then becomes an abyss of the darkness of diseases of the heart; filled with jealousy, malice, envy, greed, show, arrogance, hatred, anger, grudges. A wise and pious man used to make the du’a, “O ALLAH, Purify me heart of everything but You.”
Ibn Taymiyyah and Ibn Kathir have conveyed that we think and understand not with the mind and brain, rather that we think and understand mostly with the heart. That it is indeed the heart that is the centre of function.
In fact ALLAH SWT has used three different words, throughout the Quraan when referring to the heart. Qalb- the general and more commonly used word. It is derived from the root word or letters which mean something that turns around and changes easily. Fu’aad- the root word means burning or flame, when the heart is inflamed with emotion. As ALLAH used this word in the Quraan to describe the state of the heart of the mother of Moosa AS. And finally Sadr-meaning chest or bosom. When ALLAH refers to secrets and motives that lie within the hearts, like in Surah Naas.
When and how do we know that we are with a sound heart-Bi Qalbin Saleem? Signs of a sound heart are those that are inclined towards Salaah, Quraan, Dhikr and good deeds; wherein thoughts and emotions flow within the fountain of pleasing ALLAH; a physical and tangible pain is felt when disobeying ALLAH; repairing and returning to ALLAH easily and quickly in repentance when one errs, falters and sins; finding sweet solace in worshipping and pleasing ALLAH SWT; and a constant concern that ALLAH accept ones good words and good deeds…that is Bi Qalbin Saleem.
People who conveyed to us the aura of Bi Qalbin Saleem were undoubtedly the champions of Sunnah; those who strove to emulate and imbibe the teachings of Quraan and Hadith…the Sahabah RA. It was in the time of Nabi SAW, on a few occasions as he sat in the Masjid, a certain Sahabi RA entered the Masjid and the Messenger of ALLAH SAW glanced at him, with a sweet statement fluttering off his blessed tongue, “He is a Jannatee.” As this transpired on more than one occasion, Sahabah RA were intrigued to know why.
Another Sahabi sought the permission of the fortunate Sahabi, who had received such glad tidings from Nabi SAW, to stay with him for three days. Hoping he would learn and observe, the reasons why Nabi SAW referred to him as a ‘Jannatee’. After three days, he noted that he did all that the Sahabi did: praying on time as well as the tahajjud, fasting, doing good deeds. ‘What did he do differently?’ He wondered. And so he approached and questioned the Sahabi. The reply he received would become and remain a learning curve for every generation of Muslims. “I clean and clear my heart each night before I sleep. And beseech ALLAH that He forgive me and tell Him that I forgive those who have harmed and hurt me and I implore Him to forgive them too.”
To constantly and daily clean and clear ones heart from all else, so that nothing remains in it except ALLAH SWT…His Love, His Remembrance, His Connection. As Asma bint Abu Bakr RA so beautifully said, “Truly my happiness is in my Imaan, my Imaan is in my heart and my heart only belongs to ALLAH.”
When that day arrives and we have no doubt that it will, let us endeavour to meet our ALLAH with a sound heart-Bi Qalbin Saleem. Yet we know the way we live, is the way we will die and it will be the way we will be resurrescted. Let Bi Qalbin Saleem become the vision statement by which we run the gauntlet of life by and sail the stormy seas of dunya with…for like that gauntlet and like that sea, it has a beginning and indeed it has an end.
As Muhammad SAW raised his hands in du’a, he would beseech His Rabb indepth for a multitude of favours in the most eloquent words and of these du’as he said, “O Controller of hearts, keep my heart steadfast to Your religion. O ALLAH Make Your love more beloved to me than myself, my family and cold water on a hot day. O ALLAH I ask You for steadfastness in matters of religion. I ask You for the highest standard of integrity. I ask You for gratitude over Your favours to me and excellence in worshipping You. I ask You for an honest tongue, a sound heart and upright character.” (Munaajate Maqbool)
Bi Qalbin Saleem-with a sound heart, we implore ALLAH SWT exactly as our beloved leader and master Muhammad SAW did…Aameen Ya Rabbal ‘aalimeen
An article of mine extracted from the September 2016 edition of The Muslim Woman Magazine.
Envision your purpose and your paradise
Author, Journalist, International Motivational Speaker, Teacher & Student “Enough of a boast that He is my Lord;enough of an honour that I am His slave.”