A World of Secrets
By: Dr. Mustafa Mahmoud
The believer does not suffer from something called psychiatric diseases. That is because he/she lives in acceptance and harmony with all that is happening to him, whether it is good or evil. He/she is just like a passenger of a plane who has full confidence in the pilot, that he cannot go wrong because he has ultimate knowledge and skills of controlling a plane. He will fly it efficiently in all circumstances and will pass by storms, heat, cold, ice and fog.
In such a plane, and with full confidence in the pilot, he can sleep in his chair in complete contentment and tranquility. He does not shiver or shake if the plane falls into turbulence, or staggers in a turn, or tends towards a mountain. He knows that all those things happen by the pilot’s will and under his knowledge, and that they happen with wisdom behind them and for a purpose of greater safety. Everything is being masterminded, and every event is predestined, and there is nothing more perfect than what has already been predestined. That is why he gives himself fully to the pilot without accountability or arguing. He has full confidence in him; that is why he stretches in his chair with full serenity, in a state of complete trust.
That is the same sense of confidence the believer has with his Lord, Who drives the ship of destiny, controls the course of events, leads the huge universe, and runs galaxies in their orbits and suns in their rising and setting.
Everything that is happening to him, which he has no power over, is eventually good. If he has an illness and medicine fails to treat him, he says to himself, “This is good!” If his plants burn because of drought and all his means fail to avoid the disaster, he says to himself, “This is good, Allah (SWT) will provide me with something better.” If he fails in love, he says, “Failed love is better than a failed marriage.” If his marriage fails, then he says, “All praise be to Allah! Loneliness is better than bad company.” If his business goes bankrupt, he says, “All praise be to Allah. Perhaps Allah knows that wealth is bad for me, and that worldly earns will make me lose in the Hereafter. And if someone dear to him passes away, he says, “All praise be to Allah, Allah (SWT) is worthier of our life than we are of it and He is the only One Who knows whether it is good or bad for us to live longer. All Glory be to Him, He is not questioned about what He decrees.”
The believer’s slogan is always: “But it is possible that ye dislike a thing which is good for you, and that ye love a thing which is bad for you. But Allah knoweth, and ye know not.” (TMQ, 2:216).
He always has comfort in his heart, with a tranquil soul, seeing by the light of his inner insight that the world is a place for tests and affliction, and it is just a temporary resting spot and not a permanent home. It is a temporary shelter which will be completely removed with its good and evil. Only those who show patience and gratefulness are the winners.
The believer's heart cannot be invaded by an evil obsession, nor is his soul troubled by any scruple. That is because his soul is always busy with the remembrance of The Almighty, The Most-Merciful, and his heart always whispers: Allah…..Allah…with each pulse. The Satan cannot find a step or a dark corner in such a heart to creep in.
It is a heart that cannot be moved by calamities or shaken by disasters because it is firmly established in the seat of Truth, which never changes or alters.
The believer gives different names to all psychiatric diseases that psychiatrists talk about. For him/her repression is called sticking to chastity….. Deprivation is a spiritual development….Feeling guilty is piety…. Fear (which is fear from Allah) is a protector from slipping into sin. Suffering is the way to wisdom and grief leads to knowledge.
Desires are steps of a ladder that the believer climbs over through suppressing them. He triumphs over his desires by reining them in to reach the status of serenity and spiritual strength.
Insomnia is a gift from Allah, as the night in which the believer cannot sleep can be spent in remembrance of Allah. Spending the night with Allah is a special blessing that the believer should be thankful for; not complaining or seeking for a tranquilizer. Furthermore, if s/he remains awake till dawn, this offers him/her a chance to make his/her dawn prayer which is a great grace.
In addition, going through feelings of remorse sometimes allow the believer to reflect, return to the truth and go back to Allah. Even pain, including physical and psychological, is considered as a divine aid by which the believer can resist the lure of the worldly life and renounce it.
Despair, carrying a grudge and envy are psychiatric diseases which the believer never suffers. Furthermore, he is capable of overcoming hatred, the urges for revenge and retaliation through forgiveness, pardoning and tolerance. He does not get enraged except to defend one who has been oppressed and help him/her attain justice; he never practices violence except to overcome an oppressor.
The prevailing feelings that overwhelm the believer are cordiality, mercy, patience, gratitude, forbearance, compassion, gentleness, forgiveness, acceptance and contentment. Being occupied with such positive feelings, the believer develops a state in which there is no place for psychiatric diseases or psychiatry.
For the believer, the worshiped idols such as wealth, sex, prestige and authority are all demolished, and are no longer able to fragment hisher emotions, or distract hisher attention. Hence the believing soul can attain focus to unite its energy. Here the fog of desires clears, the vision becomes lucid, eddies calm down and tranquility prevails. As a consequence the believer gains more control over hisher own self, becoming more able to lead it as he turns from slavery to hisher own self to be free, and that is all because of the believer’s profound understanding of Monotheism: (there is no God except Allah (SWT). Besides, heshe realizes that there is no ruler, or controller or owner of the creation except only One, thus heshe is freed of the fear of any tyrant and any master. For him/her, even death is seen as liberty and pleasant journey to meet with the beloved.
The soul is different due to faith and becomes protected from psychiatric diseases. It is ascended to such a status by faith, obedience and worship, to the extent that its choices become as the same as what Allah chooses for it and its inclination is the same as what Allah pleases.
Narcissism and selfishness melt and no longer exist in such a faithful soul, thus it becomes a working tool and a hand executing the will of The Lord.
Such a believing soul is never afflicted by depression as it is always optimistic, having certain faith that there is no distress with the presence of Allah, and that justice can be achieved as long as there is Allah, The Utterly Just. For the believer, the door of hopefulness is always open as long as The All Able is alive and he never dies.
The believing soul is in permanent childish astonishment from the signs of divine power all around. A believer feels ecstasy of the beauty he can see in everything. He can see the traces of The Creator’s creativity in major galaxies as in minor atoms and micro electrons. The larger the scientific domain expands, the wider the area of fascination gets, and the ecstasy multiplies. That is why the believing soul does not know weariness, or apathy, or depression.
The grief of the believing soul is luminous. It is filled with hopefulness. In the hardest times of pain and tragedy, this soul never gives up hope and thinking well of Allah (SWT); that leads it to feel secure all the time, because it believes that Allah (SWT) is always there. For this soul, nothing saddens it more than its own deficiencies, shortcomings and sins; not the deficiencies or shortcomings of others. However, its deficiencies do not discourage it from striving to reform its flaws. Thus it is engaged in continuous Jihad (struggle), continuous climbing up the tree of sins to get out of the cone shadow to the light spreading at the top of the tree. From that light, the soul is given life; not from the thick mud at the bottom of the tree.
Thus this soul is in fighting for existence, and always engaging in a war of internal purification. However, it is a calm and confident conflict, which never disturbs its tranquility or dispels its serenity. That is because it has certainty that it fights its internal flaws with the power of Allah (God) (SWT), not by its own power. That soul’s feeling of being in permanent companionship with Allah never deserts it. That is the reason why this soul feels lasting security despite the inside fighting against ghosts of defeat and forces of nihilism….it is not fighting alone.
That is the biggest jihad (struggle) that occupies the believing soul and protects it from being occupied by trivialities, complaints and little pains; it also preserves it from obsession on its own self, lamenting itself or celebrating its talents. It is busy by going beyond itself and ascending over it. It is always in a continuous journey of exit; a journey of ascension and going beyond itself. The constitution of this soul is: to always resist what you desire and bear what you dislike.
The feelings of this soul flow smoothly in complete harmony with the universe, perfectly compatible with its laws, easily adapted to the changes that exist. Tolerance and natural simplicity are deeply rooted in such a soul; it seeks friendship with everything, and its perfect ideal is Prophet Muhammad (SAWS) while he was embracing Mount Uhud saying, “This is the mountain which loves us and we love it.” (Muslim) Thus comprehensive love is the root of all feelings of the believing soul. It is in permanent reconciliation with nature, with destiny and with Allah.
Such a soul never suffers solitude when being alone; on the contrary it enjoys a magnificent feeling of being in the company of Allah. For this soul, loneliness does not mean emptiness, or silence; it is rather busyness in being engaged in a rich and precious internal dialogue and a deep feeling of the luminous presence of Allah (SWT) all around. This cannot be loneliness, but rather a secure embrace. The only torment for this soul is its sin, and when it suffers separation and distance from The Creator. It is an agony that can be relieved by the soul’s profound faith in Allah’s forgiveness, generosity, and His love of those who repent and pray for forgiveness.
The nearest the soul comes to its Lord is when it is prostrating itself before Him; that is when the believing soul melts in love and humility to Allah. One of the patrons of Allah said, “We are enjoying a pleasure (of closeness to Allah), which if the kings taste, they would fight us to attain it!” However, the kings are so far from experiencing such a pleasure, while they are sinking in the worldly life, imprisoned in its materialistic pleasures.
Religion, obedience and jihad are the only way for the believing soul to be born again and get out of its mud cocoon. There is no other way for its birth; as science breeds conceit, art breeds nothing except idolization. Thus, only religion is the incubator in which the soul grows and reaches its target. Among scientists there may be some with mental illness, busy in inventing devastating weapons and poisonous gas. Among artists, there may be some deifying themselves and drowning in sensory pleasures. Religion alone is the path for the soul to attain integrity, salvation and healing.
The believing soul is always active, energetic and working to serve and help others. Its contemplation and worship never cut it off from being engaged in people’s everyday lives. You can see it in streets, markets and crowdedness of livelihood. That is because it sees work as an aspect of worship; and sweat and toil are the treatment and cure of the diseases of luxury, laziness and idleness.
The life of such a soul is a journey of longing for Allah, a trip of gaining knowledge and a message of helping others. Working is its gate to mental health. Its ultimate hope is to still be able to work until the last breath, and to die while planting a tree, building a wall or lighting a candle. Such a soul is a lifeboat, and it is protected from any psychiatric disease. It has no need of these days' medicine as its life is truly a prescription of happiness.
Source: “A World of Secrets”, by Dr. Mustafa Mahmoud
Translated by: Amany Elmorshidy
 The word Allah is the Arabic term for God. Although the use of the word "Allah" is most often associated with Islam, it is not used exclusively by Muslims; Arab Christians and Arabic-speaking Jews also use it to refer to the One God. The Arabic word expresses the unique characteristics of the One God more precisely than the English term. Whereas the word "Allah" has no plural form in Arabic, the English form does. Allah is the God worshiped by all Prophets, from Adam to Noah, Abraham, Moses, Jesus and Muhammad.
 Any earnest striving in the way of Allah, involving personal, physical, intellectual or military effort, for righteousness and against wrong-doing. “Lesser Jihad”: fighting to protect Islam from attack or oppression. In such fighting, no woman, child or innocent civilian is to be harmed, and no tree is to be cut down. “Greater Jihad”: internal struggle for the soul (nafs) against evil and temptation.
 Pious worshippers of Allah who enjoy an elevated degree of faith that exceeds that of the common people