On the Soul - Nafs



Enquire About Your Soul!

As Allah says about those who do not look into their souls:

{ وَلَا تَكُونُوا كَالَّذِينَ نَسُوا اللَّهَ فَأَنسَاهُمْ أَنفُسَهُمْ أُولٰئِكَ هُمُ الْفَاسِقُونَ }

{ And be not like those who forgot Allah, and He caused them to forget their own selves (souls). They are the transgressors.} Sura 59-19

  It is therefore essential to know the soul ( qalb, ruh, nafs, 'aql ) and its attributes, which is the root of religion.
Imam Al-Ghazali, Ihya, Book of Destructive Evils p.1

 It is wajib (individually obligatory) for every Muslim to gain deep understanding in the workings of the soul (nafs ).

 An Individually Obligatory Knowledge
 Jihad al-Nafs: Striving for Self-Perfection

Tafsir 91-7—10

When the soul is purified, it will be directed by the intellect, its outer and inner states will be ordered correctly, its character qualities will be refined and good conduct (adab ) will be established. A31.2

91-9 {will be successful/ will certainly have everlasting happiness}

Its success (its everlasting happiness) is in attaining knowledge of God. Further when the heart’s mirror is polished, this lower life (dunya ) discloses itself in its ugliness, but also in its reality and essence, whereas the hereafter (akhira ) and its treasures are revealed according to their innermost core and their outermost degrees. Then man will love what is permanent and give up what is ephemeral (fleeting, momentary, passing, short-lived, transitory). A10.3 p.89

91-9 When the Prophet (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) recited this verse, he would pause and then say:
”My God! Grant my soul its own godconsciousness! You are its Lord and Protector! And purify it! You are the best of Purifiers.”
(Narrated by Saʿīd b. Abi Hilal) A56.20
'Awārif al-maʿārif; As-Suhrawardī

Allah ﷻ also says

{ وَنَفْسٍ وَمَا سَوَّاهَا‏ فَأَلْهَمَهَا فُجُورَهَا وَتَقْوَاهَا‏ قَدْ أَفْلَحَ مَن زَكَّاهَا‏ وَقَدْ خَابَ مَن دَسَّاهَا }

91-7 { By the Soul, and the proportion and order given to it;
91-8 And inspired it (with conscience of) what is wrong for it and (what is) right for it.
91-9 He will indeed be successful who purifies it (causes it to grow),
91-10 And he has failed who corrupts it (instills it with corruption).}

More Tafsir - Interpretation

91-9 who cleanses the soul of lowly and despicable character traits, (Ibn Kathir)

91-10 he who dulls the soul by neglecting it through heedlessness and disobedience. (Ibn Kathir) / who buries his soul in reprehensible acts.

However there is a suble reciprocity in every step one takes toward Allah: {Rather, it is Allah Who purifies whomsoever He will.} 24-21, and { … until they alter what is in themselves.} 13-11
TSQ - The Study Quran


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