THE WEIGHT ON OUR SPIRIT
As we walk our daily life, we carry weight, which if not shed on a daily basis becomes so heavy that we sometimes collapse with it, and implode with spiritual exhaustion.
Inside us is the gift of “fitra” a pure, clean and pristine gift from Allah Subhanawataala. It is what we do on a daily basis that eventually hides or covers it to the point that it can no longer be our test for integrity and authenticity.
Allah Subhanawataala in His infinite Wisdom knew that the children of Adam will weigh themselves down with their negative actions and he provided us with a means to neutralize those negative forces within us and to lighten the load.
Prophet Muhammad peace and blessings be upon him, told us that when ever a person sins, be they large sins as in watching pornography or small as in using the company phone for a personal call, a small black dot is placed on our heart. As these dots increase, our heart which is the mirror of our soul becomes covered with a veil comprised of the coalescence of several black dots and eventually our heart becomes blind and unable to feel what is right and what is wrong, and thus we can no longer call upon it to vet our actions for truth anymore. I guess in the classic English language such a person is referred to as “a black hearted person”.
I DON’T SIN
You may say…”I don’t sin” but we know in the inner most recesses of our heart that we do.
Jesus (AS) said to those who wanted to stone the sinner “Let him who has never sinned throw the first stone” and there was stunned silence.
We know in the recesses of our subconscious that we all sin , some we call minor, some major, and these actions have weights attached to them which are then loaded on to our spirit.
We sometimes tell what is called small lies, we break our promise (ehad) of arriving at a certain time and we don’t, we eat non halal food because we don’t want to make the effort or wait to get truly halal food etc etc.
We of course do not admit this to anyone, and sometimes not even to our conscious brain. But as time passes with each sin, each lie, each infraction on the purity of our fitra, we along with the black dot on our heart are given a small load to carry.
As this load increases our spirit is burdened and sadness (huzn) depression, and spiritual exhaustion slow us down. Thus slowly and unremittingly squeezing the joy out of living.
The secret to the renewal of the spirit, energizing it and propelling into a direction that will bring us the best in this world and the best in the Hereafter comes from the simple formula practiced by Prophet Muhammad peace and blessings be upon him:
He (peace and blessings be upon him) we are told rid himself of the weight on his spirit seventy times a day even though he (PBUH) was the purest of the purest…………
Allah Subhanawataala has given us two ways one to rid the weight and two to never to put it back on:
1. FORGIVENESS: (ridding ourselves of the weight) To ask for forgiveness from Him of all the sins of the day and night. This can be done five times a day so that you shed the weight on your spirit after every Salah and rise rejuvenated and re energized, this is provided you know what Istighfaar means and you are saying it from the heart and enumerating the sins and Khatahs that you have done since the last Salah, and also those that your conscious mind may not be aware of.
2.INVITATION TO RETURN TO HIM (Prevent putting weight back on the spirit)
In a special hour of the night when the entire world pertaining to us is asleep, Allah Subhanawataala puts aside the veils of the night to listen to anyone on earth who wishes to ask for his forgiveness and promise to never repeat those sins and khatahs (khatahs are sins that you know are sins and you still do them).
In this special hour he also closely listens to those of us who wish to return to His path (Tauba) and promise to renege our previous behavior. For those sincere entreaters He (Subhanawataala) opens the highways to Him, and lighten their spirit so that the journey is easy and joyful.
HOW TO LAY DOWN YOUR BURDEN (When and how to do it):
He Subhanawataala gives us a structure in a day to remind us to shed the weight that is burdening our spirit, first with Salah and then with Tahajjud (the last third of the night) and then in His infinite Mercy for those of us who are still disobedient of His rights…………he opens the options to any minute of time and gives us permission to lay down our burden of sins, with Istighfaar and Tawba.
There is small caveat to His promise of lightening our load and that is that we in all sincerity promise never to repeat that sin……….and why wouldn’t we? Why would we want to reload our spirit with something that will weigh it down?
If we are too proud to use this formula or have gone beyond the levels of all human decency in our sinful behavior He (Subhanawataala) even then gives hope if we ask and attempt to return towards Him:
“La taknatu mer Rahmatullah”
Never give up hope of the mercy of Allah
FROM SOUTH AFRICA
I am in South Africa and I meet her in the retreat…………She says to me “ I hear we have something in common,………. you too are a bereaved mother” and then she shares her story with me where she was brought to sanity from the edge of grief that was killing her:
She hesitantly begins, intermittently gauging my ability to weather the tragedy of the story, the detail of which I will not go into here. She has been through a series of personal tragedies, losing two sons over two years, two grandchildren, and their mother, a robbery leaving her empty handed………by this time, she is perplexed and going crazy with grief.
SEARCHING FOR SOLACE
One day she goes to a very wise and pious member of her family and lays down her grief in front of him and asks for help………..
He asks her “how much are you willing to do to set down the burden of grief and calamities?”
“Whatever it takes,” she replies.
She returns and begins her litany……………one million istighfaar that is the goal.
She makes an appointment every night at Tahajjud to talk to Allah Subhanawataala. As time passes she feels lighter, none of the circumstances have changed, her children are still dead and she has lost her fortune, but she feels lighter every day.
One day she meets a woman who is dying and needs money for her children………..and thus begins her Tauba transformed into her work in the path of Allah not only to help this desperate woman and her children but all women with cancer, their families, finding them help, raising money for them, where she does not have any herself.
“This does not happen in one day………” she says as she looks at me with sympathetic eyes passing on a silent message……….. Sharing the secret of renewing ones spirit, from one grieved mother to another.