The Struggle Against the Nafs! ~ Moulana Naeem Motala Saheb DB

بِسْــــــــــــــــــمِ اَللّهُِ الرَّحْمَنِ الرَّحِيم

How can we connect to Allah Subhanahu-Wa-Ta’ala? How can we purge these hearts of ours from the evil temptations that we have? How can we cleanse our hearts? How can we rid the pride, the jealousy, the enmity, the vengeance, the love for Dunya from our hearts? … And then, focus only on the love of Allah Subhanahu-Wa-Ta’ala? We are living in very challenging times. Allah Subhanahu-Wa-Ta’ala has sent us into this Dunya which is an examination for us! We are all going through an examination period …

Allah says : Liyabluwakum ayyukum ahsanu ‘amala – Surat Hud 11:7” ~ ie: Allah tests us to see which one of us is going to excel in good actions.

“Qad aflaha man zakkaha – Ash-Shams 91:9” ~ Indeed, successful is that person who has purified his soul.”

Which one of us is going to be obedient to Allah Subhanahu-Wa-Ta’ala? Which one of us is going to purify his soul? Until and unless we don’t purify and cleanse this soul of ours, but leave it to accumulate all the filth, dirt and grime, we will find ourselves becoming very distant from Allah Subhanahu-Wa-Ta’ala’s mercy. We wont enjoy our Ibadaat and that connection with Allah Subhanahu-Wa-Ta’ala. In fact, we will be searching for something thats missing in our lives.

This is not a one day affair …This is a lifelong struggle! A lifelong Mujahada! What is Mujahada? It is a struggle and battle against our Nafs. Our Nafs entices us, prompts us, invites us, tempts and seduces us and calls out to us. If we succumb to the dictates of our Nafs then we become slaves to our passions and our egos. If we disobey Allah Subhanahu-Wa-Ta’ala and listen to every command of our Nafs then we will become ‘Slaves to our Nafs’ and not become ‘True Servants’ of Allah Subhanahu-Wa-Ta’ala. Because of not making this Mujahada, one will not be able to purify himself, and when his Nafs will not be purified, then he will not be given the Taufeeq to do good and righteous deeds. And then, with every and any sin, big or small sin, major or minor sin or any temptation, this person will slip very easily. He will not have the spiritual strength to combat his Nafs. Why? Because his ‘spiritual soul’ has become weak…

Hazrat Thanwi RA, who is considered to be a renowned ‘spiritual doctor’ has said in an article entitled ‘Bilaa Mushaqat Islaah’ … We should all aspire to make Islaah of our Nafs (spiritual reformation of our souls). But Islaah without pain, without any toiling, without any difficulty, with enduring any hardship is impossible…This is a dream! Opposing the desires and dictates of our Nafs will cause us difficulty and pain. There is a struggle that will take place. One should fight the dictates of one’s Nafs. He mentions : A newly planted tree will be easily uprooted because the roots are not firm. But a tree which has been planted for years will not be able to be uprooted easily. It will be much more difficult to uproot this tree which has it’s roots embedded deeply in the ground. Similarly, if you don’t resist your Nafs, then the roots of these evil temptations will become implanted very firmly and entrenched and embedded in the soul. Now, to undergo a reformation is going to be much more difficult in comparison to a person who has committed a sin and immediately tries to uproot this evil.

A person who persists in Gunaah (sin), gives in very easily to the temptations of his Nafs. Each one of us requires this Mujahada. Look at all our spiritual problems. Whether you are a learned person, whether you are educated, whether you are an ordinary layman, woman, man, youngster, teacher, doctor … whoever you are! Each one of us have Nafs. We are all trying to make Islaah of our Nafs. And what is required now from us? That we should oppose our Nafs so that the root of our temptations do not become entrenched into our soul!

Many times a person will approach his Shaykh and ask him to make du’aa or to give him some Wazifa so that he can make his Islaah. Well and good, we should ask for du’aa, as they are accepted from the pious. Hazrat Thanwi says : Wazifas and Tawajju have a little bit of effect only after a person has made great effort and struggle against his Nafs. Here, we are lazy to make any effort. We don’t want to undergo this toiling, this pain and this struggle. And then we expect miracles to take place!

How often do we say ‘I am a Hafidh of the Qur’aan but I just cant read it. I don’t know what happens but I just cant read. I go for Salaah sometimes and I just cant enjoy my Salaah. Eventually, I just discard my Salaah. I don’t know whats happening’. This is the effect when we have not followed the diet plan that Allah Subhanahu-Wa-Ta’ala has given us. On the one hand we are all performing our Salaah, we are attending the Zikr majlis, we are making Du’aa, Taubah, Istighfaar and going for Umrah and Hajj. But on the other hand we are still enjoying all those things that Allah Subhanahu-Wa-Ta’ala has made Haraam upon us. We have not understood because we have not seen the physical impact on our Nafs. We don’t see it happening but the Rooh is undergoing stress and pain. And the effect of this, we will see in our A’amaal.

Hazrat Thanwi RA mentions : When a person gives his hand to the hand of a Spiritual Guide or a Mentor … Then this road towards Allah Subhanahu-Wa-Ta’ala becomes so easy … Then when he is caught up in a valley of sins … Then that Shaykh very easily brings him out of that valley … provided that the person is sincere …

We need to tame these Nafs of ours. We need to have it under control. We want our Nafs to be cultured. But we fail to make effort on ourselves. We need to remove this filth that has accumulated in our hearts. Once we do that then we see that Noor penetrates into a persons heart. Now a person becomes wary of the tricks of his Nafs. None of us are such that we don’t commit any sins. We all commit sins. Allah protect us. Allah keep our Izzat. Allah don’t make us slip. We are moving on this tightrope. One slip and we gone …

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