Friday, April 13, 2012



There is no doubt whatsoever that the human character has the potential for change and that it is possible to remove its bad character traits and habits and replace them. If this were not the case, then there would be no benefit in (Allah) sending the noble Messenger MHMD and there would be no need for inheritors after him among the practicing scholars and righteous spiritual guides.

If it is possible for many predatory birds and other beasts of pray to change many of their supposedly innate character traits, then certainly humans - whom Allah (swt) has honoured and created in the best of forms - can change their character a fortiori.

The intent behind struggling against the Nafs (ego) is not a complete and total eradication and effacement of its character, rather, it is to elevate it and pick it up from bad to good, and force it to travel according to Allah's will and in pursuit of His good pleasure.

Anger is blameworthy when one exhibits it for his own ego, whereas it is praiseworthy when he exhibits it for the sake of Allah -as the Messenger of Allah (swt) would get angry if the rights of Allah were violated or if any of His limits were transgressed against. On the other hand, whenever he would be harmed for the sake of Allah, struck, or pelted - as he was on the day he was in Ta'if - he would not get angry for his own sake, rather, he would pray for those who harmed him, asking for their guidance. He would give them excuses and say: "O Allah! Guide my people for they know not!" -(Al-Bukhari)

Likewise, arrogance is also blameworthy when a Muslim behaves arrogantly towards his Muslim brothers. On the other hand, when he behaves proudly in front of arrogant disbelievers, this trait becomes praiseworthy because it is for the sake of Allah (swt) and within the bounds of the Sacred Law. The same may be said for most blameworthy character traits. They can be transformed through spiritual struggle and elevated to praiseworthy characteristics.

From-Purifying And Striving Against The Ego (nafs) by Shaykh `Abd al-Qadir `Isa

No comments:

Post a Comment