Channel: Navaid Aziz
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Perfect, because without him I know him Alhamdulillah here Abdullah either mean or SallAllahu wasallam methodical in the beginning, Muhammad didn't like that. He was such a big man, I am a God. But your brothers and sisters are Salam Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh.
I'm going to begin by starting by telling you a story. I was in my first year of Medina in the in the bachelors program, and my best friend at that time, was getting married. And he's like, look, you know, you got to come back. You got to do my Nika and you have to be heard for the Lima. And I was like, no worries, you know, we're gonna have a great time and everything's gonna go well. So I come back during the summertime, we do his Nika and it was at a hotel. It was a beautiful, beautiful wedding, mashallah so many people hadn't seen for a long time. And we had a great time with Hamdulillah. So the wedding finished around 10 3011 o'clock, I came home, I was exhausted. And I
went to bed. And at three o'clock in the morning, the house phone starts going off. And I was so knocked out that I didn't even hear the house phone. So my dad comes knocking at the door Rahimullah who Tada. And he's like, navaid, wake up, someone's calling for you. And you know, when your dad comes in, gets your three o'clock in the morning, it's not inside. So I thought I was in trouble. I thought something was happening. And I wake up, and I'm like, suddenly come who is this? And it was my best friend. And he was in a panic and almost in a frantic shock. He's like, navaid, you need to come over right now. Something's wrong with my wife. And that was okay. Don't worry, man. Let's,
let's figure this out. So I went to his house, and I'm just wearing my sleeping clothes at that time. And, you know, subhanAllah, it was a very scary image, like the sister was unable to move her legs. At that time, when she would speak her voice was very, very different.
She had a level of strength, that was not a normal level of strength. And the first thing that came to my mind, because that's what we had been trained to think, is that she's possessed by gin. This is what's happening. This is like, you know what, we need to do Autopia session. And I guess what was also at the forefront of my mind is because I had done the rakia training at that time, a little bit, not a lot, but I don't know if you're training at that time. So when you're like, you know, a little bit of the symptoms, you're automatic, unquote, okay, this must be it, which is the problem of not having no knowledge of the whole picture. So I went home, you know, got my white football and
got my coffee on I had my you know, container of zamzam. This is like, you know, Muslim Ghostbusters type vibe, go over and reciting Quran, and she's reacting to its panela, you know, spraying her with zum zum. She's reacting to the spraying of zum zum. We did this for about 24 hours. And I was like, It's not supposed to be this hard. You know, our time eventually comes? Where if there is a heart, or if there is Jen, you know, it puts the person to sleep because they're in so much agony and pain SubhanAllah. And we're doing this for like about 24 hours, and there's no reaction. And what do kids do? That's stupid and dumb. They're like, let's try to hide this from our parents. And let's not
tell them. And he didn't want to tell his parents what were what was going on, because he thought that his parents wouldn't understand. So eventually, after 24 hours, we came to the decision, you know what, maybe we won't tell your parents? Well, we definitely need to have a conversation with her parents. Like, is there something that we don't know. And eventually, we realized that many, many years ago, nothing recent, but many, many years ago, the sister had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, and the stress of the wedding, the anxiety of the wedding, it basically created a reaction in her and it brought it back. And because she had been off of her meds for so long, we didn't have
access to the medication, we had to take her to the hospital. And once she got back on her medication, Alhamdulillah, you know, she went completely back to normal to the, to the person that we knew.
And for me, that created a shift in my perception, where it's always good to know what your starting points are in life in terms of your knowledge. And it's always important to know what your gaps in knowledge are. So from that point on, you know, I did a lot of reading and we're talking about this is maybe around 2015 2016. At you know, even before that, I'm so sorry, this is like 2006 2005 2006 because I was still in Medina at that time. And I started reading about mental health and reading about mental illness. And then you we always saw this divide between what religion said and what sciences, and very few instances were there. People that knew Islam, were speaking about psychology
and mental health and people that knew psychology and mental health, you know, had some sort of understanding of Islam, and you're trying to merge the two together. So I started doing this presentation, a couple of years back, and every community that tried to visit I tried to do this presentation to create awareness about mental health and then also
speak about the Islamic components to good mental health practices and what we can learn. So the first question that always comes up, is there any evidence in the Quran and the Sunnah, that mental health exists in Islam. So for the literalist out there that need evidence for everything. I present you the Hadith found in Sohail Bukhari in the book of fasting. We are without doubt at the Allahu Anhu and Salman al Farsi had been paired together for for those of you that were here last night we were speaking how, when the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam made hatred and he migrated to Medina, he paired certain companions together he compared outdoorsman, they've been off in Southern
Nevada. And here we have Buddha and salmonella, fancy Raja Lavon. Houma being paired together. So Sandman was the older, the wiser. And you see this story over here, where sir Manuel the Allahu anhu, he comes knocking on the door of a Buddha and under the wife, without that she opens the door, very disheveled, not well maintained. And he asks her my shop Nokia, like why are you in such a state? And she says, a hookah goo Dada, they sent the hydrogen for dunya that you know, a Buddha, he has no desire from this dunya whatsoever. So I just stay in the state. And you can imagine back then it's not easy to take regular showers, not easy to wash your clothes, because there's limited access
to water. And there's no such concept of dressing up or anything like that, because it's a very humble and simple lifestyle. So staying disheveled was sort of the norm. Right? So he asks her this and she says that a hookup would or that Lisa who has written for dunya meaning that he has no desire so there's no desire for there's there's no even want from me myself to do anything special or to get dressed up or to look nice or anything like that. And she tells him that he's not home right now, but he will be home soon. And then he waits until he comes and Abu darda eventually arrives. And the Buddha does the customary thing of offering food guest comes you have to offer
food. And then as Manuel de la Juan is about to start eating, Buddha says I am fasting. And then Salman commands him to break his fast and this is part of the thick of it, that if you're fasting as a host, and the guest comes if they are eating, it is customary, and it is permissible for you to break your fast so that your your had guest feels comfortable eating with you as well. Obviously, it's outside of Ramadan, and non obligatory fasting. So they ate together, nighttime comms and the right of the guest is to stay with the host for three days. And it's something that was customary that they didn't even ask, it was an understood custom that I'll be staying with you for three days.
And this is my right as a guest. So now the night proceeds. And as nighttime comes up with our data, the Allahu Anhu he starts waking up 4pm Monday to pray in the middle of the night. And so a man commands him go back to bed, go back to sleep, happens a few other times go back to bed. And now the last third of the night comes and salon or the Allahu Anhu wakes him up. And he says Let's pray together. So they pray in the last third of the night and they finish their prayer. And then Superman starts giving him advice. And this is the beauty of our faith is that each and every one of us will have knowledge gaps will have lapses in our knowledge. And it as a community, we complement
and supplement those gaps. So as a man he gives him this beautiful advice. He says in the Arabic Alika Huck well enough cigar like a hawk while the Ambika Laker hack factory Condor, the hurricane Hakuho that your Lord has rights upon you. Your soul has rights upon you. Your family has rights upon you. So give every possessor of rights, their due share, give them their due rights. Now a Buddha he hears this advice from Salman and it was customary you get advice. You want to go and confirm it with the messenger of allah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam. So he goes to the masjid as the messenger of Allah salAllahu Alaihe Salam, is this true is this sound advice? And the Prophet
salallahu Alaihe Salam says sadaqa Sandman. That's the man has spoken the truth, the operative sentence that we're going to extract from for the sake of our discussion, we're in and enough Sika alayka Huck, that even your soul has rights upon you. So when we look at the Islamic paradigm of psychology, the discussion begins about enough's and Dodo. So the knifes we would translate as the eagle perhaps are the source of desire. And the rule is the source of life, but it is also the source of your spiritual tranquility. The ruler needs to be at peace, it needs to be tranquil. So the physical body just like it has needs, it needs to eat, it needs to drink, it needs to sleep,
then the spiritual body which is the roof also needs to be nourished, it needs to be maintained. How does that take place, through the different degrees of spirituality and through different spiritual activity, like praying? Allah subhanaw taala, legislated prayer so that we can remember him and be at peace and be tranquility, the prophets of Allah who I knew Salam used to say, additional behind our beloved, give the advance so that we may be at peace. So just like we pay very good attention to the way that we nourish our bodies and take care of our bodies. There has to be an
The active role in taking care of our souls as well. And that's what we're going to look at today. Bismillah heeta. Allah. Now, when you think of mental health, what do you actually think of? So for the, from the other side, when you guys think of mental health, what words come to mind to you? Our brother was telling us earlier on about narcissistic syndrome that he was just learning about Go ahead. Yep.
worrying about the future. So you're stressed you have anxiety. Anyone else from the brothers? Go ahead.
Not being stable, not having stability in your life? How about from the sisters? When you think of mental health? What do you think of?
Depression? Excellent. What else? Anxiety. Okay, what else?
Anything else that we think of when we think of mental health?
emotional stability, emotional health. So you were saying something?
Something that's hard to explain. I love that answer. So all of these are all the different things that come to mind when we think about mental health. So it deals with our psychology deals with our emotion, deals with our psychological well being, these are all the things that come to mind. Now, with regards to a definition of what we're going to be working with today, when we talk about mental health, we're speaking about the ability to deal with the day to day stress of life, so that you can complete your functions and your tasks. That's what we're looking at. So when we speak about mental health, good mental health equals your ability to cope with the day to day stress of life, so that
you can complete your functions and tasks, that is the definition that we're going to be working with. So a sign of mental illness, it would be that if an individual is not able to deal with the daily stress of life, so much so that they're unable to deal with their functions and tasks on a daily basis. Now, let's look at some of the numbers right statistics are very important to look at one in five Canadians experienced mental illness in a given year, so one in five. So if you're sitting down to people, to your right to people to your left, one and five right there, young people aged 15 to 24, are more likely to experience mental illness and or substance use disorders than any
other age group, meaning it is predominantly hitting younger people 15 to 24. So when we speak about mental illness, it means that we have to do our due diligence, and creating a preventative discussion, like how do we prevent this from happening, those of us that are older, we have a bit more experience. And perhaps we don't know much about mental health. But for younger generations, now that they're speaking about it, more awareness needs to be raised and more health needs to be provided to that younger generation for a wide variety of reasons. Number three, economic burden of mental illness in Canada is estimated at $51 billion per year, meaning the amount of revenue that is
lost due to people taking mental illness days, or being unable to function due to mental illness. It's costing $51 billion per year. So it shows us that there is an economic impact of mental health. And keep in mind, these are all pre pandemic numbers. We don't have the most up to date pandemic numbers, in terms of what it's been costing. But clearly, we've been seeing a rise in mental illness during the pandemic. Number four, an estimated 75% of children with mental disorders do not access specialized treatment services, meaning that they'll go to their general physician, and the general physician will know that you know, something isn't right over here, but no special diagnosis is made
to them, that this could be for lack of access. This could be due to the fact that perhaps, you know, the psychologists are just so overworked at spots and slots aren't available, particularly for certain types of psychologists, depending on the type of treatment that you're looking for. You may have months of waiting time to go and see them, about 4000 Canadians per year, die by suicide, an average of almost 11 suicides a day. And finally, you know, particularly for the Muslim community,
we often think that we're immune to suicide. And the reality is that we aren't, it's just that we do a very good job of hiding it behind shame. Families become very, very ashamed when someone in their families die by suicide.
And I think that needs to change because if there's such a high level of stigma and such a high level of shame, people do not grieve properly. People don't receive the support that they need, because of the shame. And yes, this is not to say that suicide is allowed in Islam and this is a way out that Islam condones that's not it at all. But the reality is that whether we accept it or not, it's a reality that we have to face and we need to provide support to
people, and to show people that look, there is support when it is needed for those that have suicidal ideation and suicidal thoughts, but also for the families as well, that are going to grieve, and they're going to blame themselves that what could I have done differently? What could I have done better, so that this person, you know, wouldn't have taken their Lives at that time. In 2016, suicide accounted for 19% of deaths amongst youth aged 10 to 14, that's almost one in five again, so can you imagine one in five in Canada, 10 to 14, their causes of death, or suicide 29% amongst 15, to 19. So that's almost 1/3, one in three, and 23% amongst young adults 20 to 24. And
then if you break this down by gender, you'll find it that men are more likely to commit suicide than women, men are more likely to commit suicide and die by suicide than women. And you can read more about it on the center for Addiction and Mental Health. Now, what I want to present to you is the continuum model. And I want to give a disclaimer here as well. One of the problems of having access to information is self diagnosis. So you're like, oh, I have a sore throat today. Oh, I have a headache. Oh, you know, I, I've been having trouble smelling something. Therefore, I must have COVID. Right, that happens to everyone. And particularly if you have relatives that have access to
the internet, when they ask you how you're doing, you tell them your symptoms, they're gonna do the diagnosis for you. So what I want to say over here is that look, there are going to be certain things that we discussed today, that you're like, yeah, that's happening to me in my life. That's how I feel. But certain elements of this are just part of life, right? There was this ongoing joke that my wife and I have, that once you hit 30, you're always tired, right? It's not about you did some extraneous physical activity, it's not about you sleeping late. Even if you get enough sleep, you're still tired for some reason, after you hit 30 years old. So when we talk about this model,
just keep that in mind. Don't focus on making the self diagnosis, but understand what this model is trying to explain. So this continual model of mental health, what we're looking at are behaviors, with relation to your social activity, your physical activity, your eating, and your sleeping, and your ability to do your tasks. These are the components that we're looking at. And when you're healthy, you're in degree, as things start to degenerate and digress, they'll go into the yellow, and then into the orange and into the red. And it does not necessitate that you go green to red. In fact, normal fluctuation will look from green to orange. That's pretty normal fluctuation, what
becomes problematic is if one gets stuck in the orange or gets stuck in the red, that they're not fluctuating back the other way. That's when we get concerned, that's when we get worried. And that's when professional help should be sought. So let's look at what a meant, what a healthy person looks like. So they'll have normal fluctuations in mood, what does that look like something good happens, you get happy, something bad happens, you're sad, you're angry, you're depressed, normal sleep patterns, meaning that you're sleeping around, you know, six to eight hours a day, that's pretty normal, physically, well, full of energy. As they said, that changes after you hit 30. Don't set
yourself up for failure by thinking you'll always have energy roll entire life, consistent performance, you know, what you're able to do, you know, the tasks that you have, and you're regularly able to complete them, you're socially active. So this is not to talk about those that are introverts and those that are extroverts, and where do they draw their energy from, but this is to talk about your normal state of being an introvert, your normal state of being extrovert doesn't change doesn't change. Now, what actions do you take when you're at this level? Nothing, you just focus on the task at hand, big break your tasks down into manageable chunks, identify and nurture
your support systems. And that's something we need to talk about a little bit and maintain a healthy lifestyle. So making sure you're sleeping adequately, making sure you're trying to do physical activity, 20 minutes a day, making sure that you're eating well, trying to eat healthy, and making sure that you're socializing. Now this concept of a support system isn't actively discussed. But each individual needs to identify a support system for themselves. So that if something difficult happens in their lives, they have that support system in play. So generally, when we're young children, our parents our support system, and they, you know, cuddle us and they nurture us and they
make us feel better. But as you grow older, you have to create your own support system. And part of that support system. From the Muslims perspective Is your own belief system, and the role that your faith plays in being a part of your support system. It is your friends, it is your family. It is a community. You have to think about what your support system is and you actually have to actively engage with it. Then we get to the yellow. This is where a person is nervous there.
error, irritable, they get sad. And this sadness is not stemming from an event. It's stemming from, you know, a natural state where nothing catastrophic or disastrous has happened, but you just feel sad. You have trouble sleeping, you're tired, low energy, muscle tension headaches, you procrastinate, and this is the one that gets everyone. Like who in this room does not procrastinate, whether it's at work or at school? It's a human condition, what we're talking about, everything gets procrastinated, like the dishes are there, and you're like, Inshallah, I'll do it tomorrow. And it keeps building up tomorrow, tomorrow, tomorrow, till the dishes are built up. Rather than washing
the dishes. You're like, Okay, let me order food from outside, because it will come with a container so I don't have to wash it. This is what's starting to happen. Decrease social activity. You don't want to go hang out with your friends. You don't want to go to the masjid. You don't want to go to community events. And this is where you need to start taking action, right? Recognize what your limits and boundaries are. What are you capable of? What are you not capable of try to alleviate as much of the pressure as you can get adequate rest food and exercise. Force yourself to get rest, you may not fall asleep right away. But allocate enough time so that your body does have the opportunity
to sleep if that's what it needs. Make sure you're eating healthy food, try to eliminate the sugar, try to eliminate the fatty foods and exercise. And this is something that can't be emphasized enough. But the endorphins that are created to exercise are very, very good for our mental health are very, very good for our mental health. This is a natural way of the body releasing its stress, engage in healthy coping strategies. So unhealthy coping strategies. People become obscene, vulgar, they break stuff, they do go towards substances, drugs, alcohol, sometimes even promiscuity. Those are very unhealthy coping mechanisms. A healthy coping mechanism is perhaps engaging in vicar going
for a walk or doing some exercise, something along those lines, identify and minimize stressors. So figure out what is it that's causing you stress in your life? Is there a way to minimize it, and oftentimes, you will find that there are relationships that bring extra stress in your life. honest and frank, married couples, for the wife, the mother in law relationship is one of the greatest sources of stress is one of the greatest sources of stress. And in marriage counseling, we noticed this all the time. And this is why creating healthy boundaries within those relationships is so important. Learning to create boundaries within relationship will help mitigate the stress in our
lives. And we can address some of those issues in the question answer session in shallow orange, you're injured. So anxiety, anger, pervasive sadness, hopelessness, restless and disturbed sleep fatigue, aches, pains, decreased performance, social avoidance, or withdrawal. At this point, identify and understand your own signs of distress. Talk with someone, right? Talk to someone, it's not at the level where you're getting professional help. But talk to someone as in look, things aren't right. What do you think I should do? What advice do you have for me, and this isn't someone that's going to give you bad advice, right? We all have that one friend, that's gonna give you bad
advice. Let's go do X, Y, and Zed. You can feel that x y Zed with whatever you want. That's not the person you're asking for advice, someone that will give you sound advice. That's where you want to go to seek social support instead of withdrawing. And then illness right? When the person is in the red, excessive anxiety, easily enraged, depressed mood, unable to fall or stay asleep for like days at a time, exhaustion, physical illness, you'll start to get sick, your immune system is completely shot, unable to perform duties, absenteeism, they're just not showing up to work, just not showing up to school, isolation, avoiding social events, they just want to stay in the room, close the
blinds, lay in their bed for days at a time. At this point, you need to seek a consultation, you need to seek a professional, follow healthcare provider recommendations regain physical and mental health, you want to start working backwards. And this is where you know later on, we'll be speaking about stigma with regards to mental illness, but we have a communal responsibility to fight to that. Just like someone has a broken arm. We don't shame them. Because they have a broken arm, they have a cast on their arm, or someone tells you Oh, you know, I have an upset stomach. There's no shame in sharing that. But all of a sudden, if someone says hey, I'm going to a psychologist, I'm going to a
therapist. I'm going to a counselor. Even though we may not see something, sometimes our facial expressions are enough, like really like something like that. That is enough to show that you're not being supportive. So when Segal when people are seeking adequate support, we have to be supportive of them. Now, this is what I want to spend a little bit of time on Islamic self care practices, starting with our own theology, starting with our own theology. So when we look at our Archaea
Though our source of belief, how do we understand our Lord, and for a lot of people, this can be a source of anxiety as well. They're constantly fearing the punishment of Allah subhanaw taala. They're constantly fearing Jana, not focusing on the mercy of Allah and not focusing on Allah subhanaw taala is paradise. When you look at this approach in the Quran, Allah subhanho wa Taala he tells us in sort of hijab verses 49 and 50 Let my slaves know that I am the most forgiving, and I am the most merciful, and let my slaves know that My punishment is the most severe one. So this is a balanced that were mentioned to have, that we remember the Mercy of Allah subhanho wa Taala but our
love, our religion is not all about love and mercy and no accountability, no responsibility. Our religion comes with accountability and responsibility. But it's also when you make a mistake, you realize that the forgiveness of Allah subhanaw taala is there, when you look at the attitude of our predecessors towards this issue, before the sin is committed, fear of the punishment of Allah subhanaw taala after the sin has been committed, focus on the mercy and forgiveness of Allah subhanaw taala. So that is the attitude that we should be having. But the reason why I highlight this concept of knowing your Lord, because when we think about the concept of God, oftentimes we
think of God as a vengeful God God as an angry God. But that's not what Allah subhanaw taala teaches us about him in the Quran. Every Surah begins with Bismillah R Rahman r Rahim, in the name of Allah, the source of all Mercy, the greatest displayer of mercy, right. And I love sharing this beautiful Hadith. When the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam was one day in the marketplace. And he sees a woman that is distressed. She's running through the marketplace you can imagine aisle by aisle, if you want to contextualize it. You're at a supermarket. And there's a woman going through aisle by aisle, crying her eyes out, and every time she She's a child, she picks up that child and she
embraces that child. But then she lets the child go because it's not her child. And those tears of pain, those tears of anguish, until finally she finds her child. And there's tears of pain and those tears of anguish now turned to tears of joy. And the Prophet salallahu Alaihe Salam, just having witnessed this, he turns to his companions. And he asked them a very important question. He asked them, Do you think that this woman, whatever throw her child into the fire? They said Kela jasola Kela is not just No, it is like the highest level rebuke never ever is that possible. A woman that loves her child so much, why would she ever throw her child into a fire and then the prophets of
Allah who I knew was to them at that moment, defined our relationship with Allah subhana wa Tada Allahu Allah, homophobia. Eva Heyman has the he be one idea that Allah subhanho wa Taala is more loving, more caring, more tender, more compassionate towards his slaves than this mother is towards her child. So when we try to understand who Allah subhanaw taala is, that relationship can sort of be related to the mother, in what sense? The person that constantly wants you to succeed, the person that constantly wants, what's good for you, the person that constantly wants, what's best for you is your mother. Your parents are the only one that will want you to achieve a higher level of success
than they themselves achieved right? But particularly your mother and Allah subhanho wa Taala wants even better than that for you. So Allah subhanho wa Taala is not vindictive Allah subhanaw taala is not vengeful, Allah subhanho wa Taala wants what is best for you. And
Jahannam the Hellfire is a result in a consequence, not of who Allah is, but our perpetual rebellion against what Allah subhanaw taala commanded, and I emphasize perpetual. If it's a one off and you repent, you're forgiven says if this is the place, what if you keep doing those sins and you're not repenting, and you're not rectifying your ways, then at that point, you have to understand that there are consequences, spiritual and physical consequences in this life and the next that's what ends up happening. So understand who your Lord is, the more you get to know Allah subhanaw taala through His names, the more you study about Allah subhanaw taala in the Quran, this will help create
a support system for you. That you understand that Allah subhana wa Tada is by your side Malwa dakara Buka Womack Allah, that your Lord has not abandoned you, nor does he detached you.
The next aspect to this, I'm gonna go on a theological tangent over here.
Within early Muslim philosophers, you had philosophers that said that if reason and Revelation were to ever come into conflict, then reason would take precedence over revelation. Reason will take precedence over revelation. Even Taymiyah Rahim Allah He comes in
argues that no, the source of reason and the source of Revelation are one in the same from God. So intellect that has not been corrupted, and a revelation that is authentic and preserved, coming from the same source that could not be contradictory. If it is, then there's a problem not in the revelation or the reason itself, but it's in the source of both of them right? It will be a problem with God. And he said, That is not possible. So anytime there is a problem, there has to be in every time there is a perceived problem, there has to be an interpretation behind this. Now imitate Me or him hula takes this exact thinking, and brings it to the the question of theodicy of dealing with
evil and then the problem of evil and how do we understand evil. So he takes this hadith of the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam that says, amazing as the affair of the believer, all of it is good. If something good happens, he is thankful, if something troublesome happens, then he is patient. So all of the affair of the believer is good. And he said, based upon this, we understand logical outcomes, and we understand theological outcomes. For any given event, there are five logical outcomes for any given event, there are five logical outcomes, and I want us to pay extra attention over here. Okay, so for any given event, there are five logical outcomes. Either it is
absolute good, or it is absolute bad,
or they are equal, the good and the bad, are equal, or the good is greater than the bad, or the bad is greater than the good or the bad is greater than the good. These are the five logical outcomes for any given scenario. But now, he says, Theologically speaking, looking at this hadith and understanding who Allah subhanaw taala is, there are only two possible theological outcomes. So even in the worst of circumstances, there's only two possible theological outcomes for the believer, understand, that is the caveat over here. Either it is absolute good, or the good is greater than the evil, or the good, is greater than the evil. Now, what premises says come with this statement,
it has to be a believer, and they have to believe in an afterlife, right? That you cannot have
an ultimate outcome in this life. If you're talking about the topic of justice, think about all the terrible things that happen to children across the globe. There is no sense of justice in this life, ultimately, ultimate justice can only take place in the life of the hereafter. That is why belief in the life of the hereafter is so integral when we talk about justice, when you understand that true justice cannot take place in this life. Similarly, when we understand this concept of happiness, you get glimpses of happiness, you can be content in this life, but ultimate happiness, where everyone that you love is happy at all times, and is not distressed ever, that only takes place in the
hereafter. So now I want you to think about all of these things that happen to a believer, and how they are framed into something positive, either the good is better than the evil, or it is absolute good. The natural question that comes up is how about Shavon? The most evil of Allah subhanaw taala is creation? What good could possibly come out of the existence of shaitan? And this is what I want you to think. What good can come out of the existence of shaytaan? My little friend who is the mathematician, please, what good can come out of Shavon.
makes it so she thought whispers to us, and He tests us. And based upon those whispers and those tests, how we react to them will dictate whether we're getting good deeds or whether we're committing sin. So through the existence of shaytaan the believers get more good deeds, the righteous people get more good deeds, and that is what we strive for. So one of the ways that we are tested is through the existence of shaitan. That is one benefit of the existence of shaitan. Can we think of another benefit from the existence of shaytaan?
Sorry, so continuously making jihad of your knifes so constantly struggling against, you know, temptation. Excellent. What else? Go ahead.
Sorry, can you just speak a little bit louder?
You recognize who your friends are and who your enemies are? Excellent. Go ahead.
So that shaytaan says that he'll continue to lead people astray till the Day of Judgment. So chiffon is an example of what the ultimate wicked life leads to.
an egotistical, arrogant, non submissive being it
It's logical conclusion, and shaytaan. So that example of what evil can lead to is shaytaan. So these are all good examples. So when you find the whispers of shaytaan good comes out of that the existence of shaytaan shows us what rebellion leads to the existence of shaytaan shows us that, you know, there is no person that's devoid of hope, except those that give up Allah subhanaw taala invited him to his mercy invited him just for giving us shaytaan refused. So these are all benefits from the existence of shaytaan. So you have to understand that even in the most evil of circumstances, good can be derived. As long as it leads to you entering paradise at the end of the
day. Everything that happens is good. That's how we want to frame things. So number two, we move on to dua, the concept of supplicating to Allah subhanaw taala, complaining to Allah as a boil as opposed to about Allah. In Surah Yusuf Jacoba Lisa dam loses his son and in fact he loses his second son as well. And what does he do he says he jacobellis He says a school bus the workers knee illallah wa ala moment Allahu Allah Tala mode, that I complain of my grief and sorrow to Allah, and I know of Allah subhanaw taala that we do not know. So this shows us the permissibility of complaining to Allah, and how this is a righteous deed. What is the difference between complaining
to Allah, as opposed to complaining about Allah, complaining to Allah, you recognizing your own weakness and the strength of Allah, you're recognizing your own dependence? And Allah subhanaw taala? Is independence, you recognizing your own insufficiency? And how sufficient Allah subhanaw taala is, right. So this is what complaining to Allah looks like. It's about seeking help by recognizing your own weakness, and the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam himself did this. When you look at the famous do I have five, the incident of five what does he say? He says a school in Laker Darfur, Kuwaiti working letter Haiti, well, Hawaiian in Elena's right all of these things that
are happening. I complained to you of my weakness and my lack of having a plan anything in front of me and my dependence upon the people. He's complaining to Allah. And when we talk about the concept of venting, this is what good venting looks like good venting is complaining to Allah and you seek ALLAH subhanaw taala is help. Bad venting is when you start talking about people, and you start telling other people about your problems that involve other people. And even though you may not intended but you're shaming those people making those people look bad, right? That's what bad venting looks like. So complaining to Allah subhanaw taala and understanding who can really help you
in this situation. You have to identify your support systems again, right. So once you've identified your support systems, you turn to your support systems at that time, and your primary support religiously is Allah subhanaw taala always turning to Allah, in prosperity and in adversity, asking Allah subhanaw taala for help asking Allah subhanho wa Taala for God's to be maintained asking ALLAH SubhanA wa Taala for ease, constantly asking for those things.
Now the Salah, this concept of disengagement from day to day stress, when Allah subhanho wa Taala legislated the prayer, Allah subhanho wa Taala gave certain objectives behind it. Right Allah subhanaw taala he tells us in the Quran, in NA salata turn her on, in fact, Shia, you will look at that the salah prohibits and prevents a person from lewd and evil behavior. In the act of Salah, you're not going to be thinking of evil and lewd behavior, and it becomes a protective measure for you. And you're meant to completely disengage from the Salah, as you're meant to completely meant to disengage in the Salah. Now, what does that look like? And what mistakes do people make? Oftentimes,
when we embark upon prayer and come to prayer, we don't take the time that is needed to flush out our thoughts and empty out our thoughts. Before we empty before we enter the prayer. So before you enter the prayer, we're even taught that if the food is being served, eat before you start your prayer, this applies to you have to go to the bathroom, go to the bathroom, there's something urgent you have to do, go and do that urgent thing before you started the prayer so that shaytaan cannot use it as a weapon or as a tactic to make you disengaged from the prayer because this is your spiritual rejuvenation at that time. And this is why there are even certain practices that you're
meant to engage in that starting from will do. This concept of making will do. It's about your sins being forgiven, right the drops that fall off your body. Those are your sins being forgiven. It is about imagining on the Day of Judgment, all these parts that I made will do with they're going to be a shining light. When you start to the prayer, you're thinking about standing in front of Allah subhana
mourtada And what that would be like, you're thinking about the angels of good deeds, writing down the good deeds that you're doing so that you want to protect this action as much as possible. You're thinking about the Angel of Death behind you that what if this is my last prayer, you pray as if it is your last prayer. And then all of the actions of prayer are meant to remind you of Allah subhanaw taala. If you look at divine wisdom,
you start off by saying, Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar is not that heavy statement on the scale of good deeds. La ilaha illa. Allah is more heavier, yet why do we start with Allahu Akbar? Because it is the most befitting statement at that time we remind ourselves, that there is nothing greater there's nothing more important. There is nothing that my Lord cannot handle. And my Lord is Allah subhanaw taala that is what you're reminding yourself of as you start the prayer with Allahu Akbar. Just getting into a state of mind that I'm about to engage in a private conversation with my Lord. So I need to have that apt attitude that apt posture that after behavior, that you engage your LORD with
you your ultimate focus is only on Allah subhanaw taala. And it's amazing if you can force yourself to disengage from this dunya and engage with the akhira. Now once the prayer is over, and you're like I said Mr. Toma salaam aleikum wa rahmatullah. You're ready to go back and engage with their tasks and engage with your stress. But when you don't take breaks from your stress, your stress eventually breaks you. And that's what you need to realize. So that is what the prayer is meant to be for. It is meant to disengage from our stress, the equivalent of what people do with yoga and meditation in this day and age. It's meant to de stress you and completely focus on something else.
And then the last thing is this concept of gratitude, sugar.
And I want to share the statement of Amada macabre, the Allahu anhu, who said that when the Sahaba, or the Allahu anhu, were tested and tried, they were grateful for three things. So when we think of tests and trials, we often think of patients. But the attitude over here is not to focus on patience, but it's just to focus on gratitude. So he says that they were grateful that this trial was not in their faith, that they lost something of this dunya the dunya comes and goes, but your faith gets tested, then that's something to worry about. So as long as it wasn't in their faith, they were okay. Number two, they were thankful that their trial was not as great as it could have
An individual loses $10 It is a catastrophe, you can do a lot with $10. But be grateful that Al Hamdulillah, I didn't lose $100 Be grateful that I have my house, be grateful that I have my family, so many things to be grateful for that is what you should focus on that Al Hamdulillah the calamity was not as great or as severe as it could have been. And then the third thing he mentions is that they were grateful to Allah subhanaw taala that Allah subhanaw taala allowed them to keep their composure and to be patient. Now I want you to think about what a terrible site it is. When people become angry and obscene and vulgar and they break things and are completely out of control. It's a
very uncomfortable situation to be in. So if Allah subhanaw taala has allowed you to keep your composure even in the most difficult of trials, then this is something to be grateful to Allah subhanaw taala for and this is something that you train you enough to write, if you look at one Hadith and one ayah Allah's Messenger sallallahu alayhi wa sallam he says so bro and the submittal Allah, that patience is when the calamity for strikes. Then when you look at the Quranic injection, What is Allah subhanaw taala tell us and levena Asaba Tomas Eva Corlew What do they say? In the law he were in a theological, that the believers when they're struck by calamity, their natural reaction
is to say to indeed indeed to Allah, we belong and to Him, we shall return. You train your enough to get to that level where your natural reaction is to turn to Allah subhanho wa taala.
Can I do a fun exercise with you guys? Are you guys okay with that? It's a bit immature. But let's do this exercise. So this story revolves around me and my relationship with my cousin. So I have an older sister Alhamdulillah. But she wasn't like the friendliest person growing up. So she's four years older than me. She had like full autonomy of the house. She was like the favorite child. So anytime one of her friends came over and it happened often. It wasn't enough that I go to my room or go to the basement, I'd have to physically leave the house. So you can only play so much basketball only gonna play so many video games with your friends. You want you to actually do homework. So when
homework time came, I go to my cousin's house, and I ended up spending so much time with this cousin. She was six months younger than me. We literally established like a
sibling rivalry, it was so strange. But for those of you that come from big households and big families, you may be able to relate. So she gets a new bicycle, I need to get better bicycle, she got a laptop, I need to get a better laptop. And this is the way that it continued. We're constantly competing with another. And obviously, when it came to our grades, you know, as soon as I would come home, my mom would be like, so how did you do? And I'm like, 100, I got an A in this, they gotta be in that. And here's how he did. But then there's always that dagger that either stabs you in the heart or stabs in the back, depending on how you perceive it. How did your cousin do? And I'm like,
why is that even relevant? Like I might not your child, what you care about why he didn't score, and obviously, being more studious, you know, being more isolated. I'm gonna come with a whole bunch of reasons that aren't true. That's why she did academically better than I did. But as is the son of Allah subhanaw, taala. My vindication my victory came the day we went to get our driver's license. And let me tell you that story.
So she goes and does her her driving exam. And she comes home. And there's tears in her eyes. And I'm like, Are those tears of joy? Or are those tears of sadness, let's wait and find out. And those tears get stronger. And she's like, Mama Baba, I'm so sorry. But I failed. And that shows us that how much pressure was on us or exam like, I think back, I'm like, That's not fair. There shouldn't be that much pressure to pass an exam. But I don't admit to this, but in the back of the house, I'm like, That could be it. Allahu Akbar. I'm like celebrating laws. What happens when you do that? All the pressure is on you now.
So I go to do my driver's exam. And I get into the car. And this gentleman sitting there. And he's like Mr. Aziz, welcome to your final driving exam. Please proceed out of the parking lot. So I'm like the smell that I put on my seatbelt. I check all of my mirrors. I look around, everything's clear. I put the car in reverse. I'm going back. I'm going back and going back. Oh, you hit something. What is the first word that comes to your mouth? We're in the masjid. Don't say too loud. But our natural reaction at that time shows what's in our hearts shows what's in our source. Some of us may have not said anything, and that's fine. Some of us may have said something bad. And that we
shouldn't be saying that's something a behavior that we needed to change. Some of us we may have even remembered Allah subhanaw taala at that time, and that is what we're striving for. So when we look at is that when the calamity strikes, where does your heart naturally turn to? To seek its support? We want to train it to turn to Allah subhana wa Tada.
Now, what does self care look like? What does self care look like? 50 ways to take a break. This will vary from person to person from individual to individual, some people will excel at journaling, writing down what happened in their day talking about their emotions, and letting it all out through journaling. Other people will do art, other people go for a walk, other people play video games, other people will go for a bike ride, it varies from person to person. The reason why I highlight this is that you need to figure out what your body uses to distress, some of them are going to be healthy, and some of them not so healthy. So something like playing, you know, violent video games,
it may distract you, but it's not taking your stress away. So we're not looking for distractions, we're looking for something to take our stresses away, that will actually make us feel better. So it's very important to look at how your body reacts to certain activities. And then those are the activities that you want to pursue, to de stress, sports, walks, nature, art, poetry, journaling, whatever it may be, there's 50 examples over here, coloring with crayons, climbing a tree, you know, giving thanks, whatever it may be. So figure out what it is that it is that works for you. And when you need to take a break, and you can tell like, Hey, I'm getting into the yellow here. Let me go
and do something that will help me distress and practice self care.
The S word dealing with stigma in the Muslim community. And this is something that I spoke about earlier on. That the way that we treat physical illness is the sort of community approach that we need to take to mental illness as well. That sometimes people will fall in an event, they'll triple rewire, something will happen. And everyone will be like, Okay, let's go help them. But at a community event, if someone has a mental breakdown, you know, a psychological illness appears. All of a sudden were petrified and scared, step away, listen on help and support the person called the cops, you know, get them kicked out of the Masjid. What other approach whatever other approach we
may take. It's not a supportive approach. And a lot of that stems from stigma. It stems from ignorance, it stems from not understanding what is going on. So just
as like a person with physical illness needs help and support. Someone with a mental illness also needs help and support. Another concept that needs to be addressed is the concept of jinn. I understand that, yes, as Muslims, we do believe in jinn, we do believe and we do believe that there is a dark world and a dark element in this life. But they attribute everything to that, oh, I fell down, or it must be Jin, oh, I didn't get a job. Oh, someone did so hard on me. That's not the way this world works. Right? Sometimes you have to accept responsibility and accountability for your own actions. This is not to minimize it, it is not to belittle it. But I'm just saying we can to blame
everything on it. There are natural occurrences that will occur. And that's just life, you accept it, and you move on. So blaming everything on gene is also not a way out that mental illness does exist. It is real, just like a physical illness is and that is the way that we'll treat it as well. And we have accumulated responsibility to eradicate the stigma. Now, this question always comes up. If I go through depression, or I feel sad, does this mean I have weak faith? I want to hear I love that and 100 a definite answer is no. There is not a direct causal relationship between a high level of faith and sadness and depression. What is the evidence of this right? We are people of evidence
we always want to look at evidence. You look at the CRO of the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam his biography, you have a whole entire year known as arm and husband. The year of sorrow, the year of grief. That was the year Khadija La Jolla one had passed away. There Abu Talib passed away the incident of life. Those three major moments in our defining moments in the life of the Prophet salallahu Alaihe Salam happened in that year, and it was called the year of sorrow, which shows us that the person with the greatest amount of faith that has ever lived, if he can feel sadness, if he can feel grief, then so can we. And that has nothing to do with your faith. And you look at a very
specific example, when the son of the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam passed away. What do we learn from that incident? He says in the line Allah Tada. We're in Lacan by the Yakuza, that the eyes will shed tears. And the heart will grieve, this is a part of a natural process. And those things are beyond your control, you can't control if you're going to cry, sometimes the body just needs to let it out. You can't control grieving, that is a part of a human process. But what you can control is what the President says in the third part, but the tongue will only say that which is pleasing to Allah subhana wa, tada. So focus on what is in your control, and that is what you're
accountable for that which is beyond your control, you're not held accountable for. And this is like another thing when we talk about masculinity, and what does masculinity look like? It's not about this, you know, Red Pill movement that's emerging in our day and age. The Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam cried, and one of the companions in another version of this hadith was astonished. The artists who Allah are you crying?
Like this, and your faith prevents you from crying? Doesn't your masculinity prevent you from crying? And what does he respond with in Russia? Indeed, it is a mercy from Allah. And I want you to think about the last time you cried, one of the beautiful things about crying is how you naturally feel better after crying. I don't know what the science is behind that. But you cry and you feel better, even though nothing has changed in your life. You cry and you feel better. And that's what ends up happening. So now, when we think about depression, that's related to an event. You are allowed to feel sad, you are allowed to feel depressed, you are allowed to grieve and to process and
it has nothing to do with your faith. So when incidents happen and you feel sad, that's normal. What we want to diagnose and seek professional help for is what if nothing sad is really happened, but you're feeling sad and you're feeling hopeless, hopelessness, go and seek help, at that time, go and have a conversation with someone.
The concept of empathy and helping others.
You know, this is something that's very, very important. And if you look at the life of the prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam,
and one of the Divine wisdoms behind why the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa salam went through so many hardships and calamities, so let's try to list them as much as possible. His father passing away at six months mother passing away at five or six years, Grandfather passing away at nine years, Khadija, the Allahu anha. His first love and wife passing away in his lifetime, all of his children passing away in his lifetime, except for fought them out on the Allahu anha.
The incident of five happening the incident of bundle Kurata happening
In the treachery, the backstabbing all of this happening, why? Two reasons that we can extract that are very simple. Number one, is that it gave the Prophet salallahu alayhi wa sallam a deeper and deeper level of empathy, that when someone loses a child, when someone loses a family member, he knows what it's like to have experienced it and the emotions that they will go through. So now he knows how to support them, and he knows what they need. And then number two, is that the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam becomes the role model in terms of how to react in those circumstances, how to react in those circumstances, and situations. So now developing that empathy, that we are all
humans, we will all grieve, we will all go through hardships and calamities, and we're all in this together. And I empathize with the pain that you're going through and validate the emotions, right? We don't say why are you sad? We don't say why are you angry? You acknowledge the fact that people have the right to be sad, and they have the right to be angry. And this is what the prophets of Allah who I never saw them, tell us, I shouted, Allahu Allah. Right. I know, when you're angry with me. And I know when you're happy with me, he allowed that range of emotion in his murder life, it wasn't a dictatorship where you only can be happy all the time, right? So you have to validate
people's emotions and say it's okay. It's fine to feel the way that you feel, and then actively listening. And I think particularly for men, this is something that we need to look at.
When we listen, it's often to problem solve, we hear a problem, or here's the solution. But when you're dealing with different people with different walks of life, oftentimes, they just need to know that someone cares don't offer a solution unless they asked for one. That's what I've learned, in my experience, someone asked for a solution offered to them. But oftentimes, they just want you, they just want to know that someone cares about them, that someone wants to good for them, that someone is willing to support them. So that active listening component is very important. And also giving people your period, your undivided attention. So when someone is speaking to you, don't be
busy on your phone, don't be distracted by something else. The prophets of Allah who I knew was telling us to turn his full body and face the people that he was speaking to, you would never, you know, give them half divided attention.
things not to see things not to say, I know it's due for the event very, very soon. But I just want to finish this slide. And actually, we have three slides and we'll be done. So these are things that you shouldn't say to people. And these are perhaps things that are commonly said that they're quick to our tongues, but things like you need to get out more. It's all in your mind. You have nothing to worry about. Stop complaining all the time. I always knew you had a problem. There is nothing even wrong with you stop looking for attention. You don't look anxious or depressed. You aren't pushing yourself hard enough. It sounds like you're going crazy. You need to stop feeling sorry for
yourself. No one ever said life was fair. You're always so negative. It's your own fault. Things aren't that bad things could be so much worse. Just snap out of it. Right? These are things that we commonly respond to people, but they have a very detrimental effect the one that I have the highlight or two, you don't look anxious or depressed. Anxiety and depression manifests itself in different ways with people. And number two, you aren't pushing yourself enough. You don't know what people's capacities are. Allah subhanho wa Taala created people with different capacities, right? So keep those in mind.
The reward of helping people going out of your way to help people the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam says that if anyone relieves a Muslim believer from one of the hardships of this worldly life, Allah will relieve him of one of the hardships of the Day of Resurrection. If anyone makes it easy for the one who is indebted to him. Allah will make it easy for him in this worldly life and the hereafter, and if anyone conceals the fault of a Muslim, Allah will conceal his faults in this world and in the hereafter. Allah helps his slave as long as he helps his fellow brothers and sister Allah if you only have the Maya Cornella Abdo, Fiona ASCII, and this applies to brothers and
sisters. So this concept of going out of our way to help people and what I mean by this is I want you to imagine you're walking down an aisle and you see someone crying.
We've been conditioned so much, so mind your own business and keep walking on. But that is not the attitude of the believer that as long as it's a safe environment, stop and ask them, Are you okay? Is there something that I can help you with? That is a human thing to do. And understand that when you do that, you have a great reward from Allah subhanaw taala, as this hadith clearly states. Now the conclusion I want to share with all of you
invest in your Imams. imams are usually frontline workers in our communities. They have religious training, but they don't have mental health and psychological training. So if you want your Imam to be a good community leader, you have to provide them that training. But until you provide them that training, don't go to them for mental health advice. Go to a professional. We as a community have to raise awareness on such topics to eradicate the stigma. It's a part of a
I'm gonna put them out overnight and then monka enjoining good and forbidding evil. When we get away, get, eradicate the stigma and create safe spaces for people to talk into discuss, then that is when our community will thrive up until then our communities will not thrive. realisation that Islam is all encompassing. And it is always the beginning of our research, that we don't believe in the secular approach to science, where science and religion are separate. We believe that science and religion go hand in hand, they're from the same source will focus on the the ailment and him that on top of every science is a source of all knowledge, which is Allah subhanaw taala. Be aware and seek
help when you need it. Looking at your own triggers, look at your own things that cause stress and anxiety. And when you need help reach out. And then last but not least, when you're able to always be the helping hand starting off with your closest family members and your friends. Pay attention to their behaviors and help people as much as you can. May Allah subhanaw taala help us all. So just briefly speak about what's going to happen now. We'll break for a motive now. We'll give the Daniel give me a comma right after and then we'll leave about six, seven minutes for your Sunnah prayers and your vicar, then we'll come back. We're going to have another shuffling into a short
presentation, and then we'll have the q&a where you can ask all your questions inshallah does welcome Alafaya thank you so much.