Every person loves to be productive in some way or the other be it a homemaker or a company manager. While doing any kind of job, one should not only get involved with their brains and hands, but should pour their heart into it in order to get a productive result. Humans are known to chase happiness and peace. Afterall, everyone likes happy endings. In order to get a productive result that keeps you happy and peaceful, you should always try to keep your heart sound and health – free from any kind of sickness.
WHY IS A HEART SO IMPORTANT?
Information and skills acquired through experience or education, theoretical or practical understanding of any subject is what we all humans acquire. After having all these understandings, the state of the heart decides whether a person is going to make use of these things and do something productive or going to be lazy about the things. Therefore, heart plays a very important role in not only keeping a person physically alive but also spiritually.
Prophet Mohammed said “In a body there is a flesh which, if it is sound the entire body will be sound and if it is corrupt the entire body will be corrupt and it is heart. 1
TYPES OF HEART
Ibn Al Qayyim writes in his book “Lagathatul Lahfan Fi Masayid Ashshaytan” that there are three types of heart.
- A sound and healthy heart:
His first job will be to get closer to Allah and he does this by obeying Him. So basically, apart from completing his five obligatory prayers, a sincere and a true heart tries to do all small chores in his daily routine keeping his mind and heart conscious of the fact that his Creator is watching him. This way, he always tends to be productive with his life and benefit himself and other people around him.
Allah mentions about this kind of people in Quran that He is pleased. “You will not find a people who believe in Allah and the Last Day having affection for those who oppose Allah and His Messenger, even if they were their fathers or their sons or their brothers or their kindred. Those – He has decreed within their hearts faith and supported them with spirit from Him. And We will admit them to gardens beneath which rivers flow, wherein they abide eternally. Allah is pleased with them, and they are pleased with Him – those are the party of Allah . Unquestionably, the party of Allah – they are the successful” (Surah Mujadilah: Verse 22).
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU KEEP YOUR HEART IN A SOUND STATE?
When you keep your heart in a sound state, it will have a positive impact on a person’s mind and body. Hence, a person tends to create a positive atmosphere wherever he/she is. It becomes easy for a person to identify a straight path and refrain from evil.
If a mother is having a sound heart, it will not only make her 24*7 hour job easy but her children who are constantly watching her will tend to learn a lot of good things from her. She creates a positive and a happy atmosphere in the whole house and it becomes easy to deal with the minute problems of daily life in a healthy way.
If a person is doing a job with a true heart, he too tends to create a positive atmosphere around him by getting involved in healthy discussions, refraining from unnecessary arguments, being kind and gentle and polite in his dealings, listening and respecting others opinions patiently, etc. Because of his positive approach, people around him desire to follow him and this person is doing everything for the sake of Allah. He indirectly is giving dawah to the people around him (by trying to set an ideal example through his actions).
- A dead heart:
A dead heart is the opposite of a healthy heart. It does everything to please itself. It is slave of its own desires. If money is what a person with a dead heart desires, then he becomes a slave of money. He does everything and anything for the sake of earning money irrespective of whether it is earned in a halal or haraam way. Similarly, if a person with a dead heart desires to be fashionable, then he become the slaves of the fashion world. They tend to follow the trend irrespective of the fact that the particular trend falls under the category of hijab or not. Therefore, they just follow whatever is trending in the fashion world.
“……and do not obey one whose We have made heedless of Our remembrance and follow his desires and whose affair is ever [in] neglect”. (Surah Kahf 18: 28)
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU KEEP YOUR HEART IN A DEAD STATE?
The person with a dead heart will not be satisfied with him/herself though they do every possible thing to please themselves. As their hearts are not spiritually alive, this will have a huge impact on their minds, actions and directly affecting their levels of productivity.
“……they have hearts with which they do not understand…..”(Surah Al Araf verse 179)
“…..Allah has set a seal upon their hearts because of their disbelieve…” (Surah An Nisa, verse 155)
“….So when they deviated (from the path), Allah caused their hearts to deviate….” (Surah As Saf verse 5)
- A sick heart
A person with a sick heart may treat his family in a soft and humble way but struggle to pray five times prayers or he may pray all obligatory prayers and read Quran but still struggle to control his/her anger at certain issues.
WHAT HAPPENS TO A PERSON WITH A SICK HEART?
Because the heart is sick, this person will constantly battle feelings of sadness and fear, leading to low self confidence. At times of low faith, stress and anxiety may control their lives, and at other times when their faith is high, they may overcome their fear and be content with themselves.
So, can a person possesses only one kind of heart throughout his life or will the state of the heart change from one category to another according to his faith and practical situations of life?
When a sin is committed for the first time, a black dot stains the heart. If the person repents and asks for forgiveness from Allah, the heart shines again. If the person does not repent and he repeats the sin, the stain becomes larger, and with time, it becomes so large that it covers the entire heart. 2 “No! Rather, the stain has covered their hearts of that which they were earning”(Surah Al Mutaffiffin verse 14].
KEEP A TRACK OF YOURSELF
You can do this by recollecting whatever activities you did for the whole day before you go to sleep.
Do it for 15-20 minutes
If you feel that some of the things which you have done today· can be done in a better way tomorrow, then improvise those activities.
If you feel that some actions may have hurt people around you, then, fix the problem by talking to them directly and seek Allah’s forgiveness.
If you feel you have been struggling today with your prayers, then organize your day in such a way that you can pray peacefully.
Basically, just giving yourself 15 to 20 mins before sleep and recollecting about your daily activity can bring wonders and barakah in your life. Similarly if a person keeps improvising himself this way, then by the will of Allah, he can maintain a heart that is clean and sound. Initially, a person might struggle with this, but once he has mastered the art, it will become easy for him to keep his heart in a clean state.
However, if a person is well aware of his corrupt heart but still does not do anything to set it right, his sins will pile up leading to a dead heart. However, a person with a dead heart can also start his journey towards making his heart alive by sincerely repenting to Allah and staying away from major and minor sins.
Allah mentions in Quran,
“Say to those who disbelieved, if they cease (from their disbelief) their past will be forgiven…..” (Surah Al Anfal verse,38)
Therefore, a person who seeks knowledge about Allah and chooses to be on the straight path will be given guidance. It might be possible that your heart keeps jumping between these three categories but as mentioned above, if a person identifies and master the art of keeping his heart clean, then it will easy to keep the heart in a sound and pure state.
2. www.abuaminaelias.com, Faith in Allah, Author- Abu Amina Elias, Written on April 4 2015  www.englishtafsir.com, The meaning of the Quran, author-Syed Adul Ala Maududi.
About the Author:
Anjum Fathima is proudly enjoying the blessings of being a mother to a child. She has completed her double graduation from India and has worked as a volunteer in two Islamic organisations. i.e Girls Islamic organisation and sisters committee for Islamic Online University India. .She was pursuing her higher diploma course from IOU but took break from it. She strongly believes that nothing in this world is impossible to achieve as long as the intentions are good. With the help of Allah, she believes that the word of Allah can be spread and the strongest revolution can be brought about with education and writings.