Reforming the Self #10
Channel: Tom Facchine
File Size: 34.22MB
Bismillahirrahmanirrahim I'm hamdulillahi rabbil Alameen wa Salatu was Salam ala Ashraful, MBA one mousseline nabina, Muhammad watching the Mohammed Ali he offered a Salah was good to sleep a lot on the island that we may have found out and found that the Mt. ILM tena was in our element era. But I mean,
last class, we talked about the suggestions that come to a person.
And we realized that those suggestions could sometimes be
from our intellect or from our better selves.
And sometimes that those suggestions were from our lower selves or our base self, or our egos, however you want to describe it. And we talked about
how we are to differentiate and distinguish between those two parts of us the intellect, and the How're the Ocklawaha or as Raghavan also, Hani puts them in opposition, the intellect and the urge
So, who remembers any of the ways to differentiate between the two? What are some of the ways that we can tell sure fire up this is from the intellect drop, this is definitely from my urge or my impulse.
Good, those two are pretty much the same thing. So short term versus long term, right, the intellect is able to see a long term benefit and undergo sustain take on short term harm
in order to
eventually get that long term benefit or what we said was
Where as the lower self,
is not capable of delayed gratification, it only will be satisfied or things that will be satisfied
by instant gratification. Very good. That was the first one. There were other ways to think there may be for about four different ways we talked about, what are some of the other ways how can you tell?
Very good. Yes. Good, honest companions advice, will buttress and support and strengthen
what the intellect leans towards.
And we added to that, in addition to advice, there was something else that was tucked in alongside of that.
Is the shower, which was the advice part and it's the hoarder. Right, preying upon it, asking a lot to give us guidance, we're so good. So what the intellect leans towards is supported and strengthened and buttressed by these two, these two means that we have is the shot a seeking others advice and counsel, and it's the hara, asking a lot to clarify the issue for us to take away.
Things that aren't good for us and to bring close things that aren't good for us. And I guess it's a good it's as good a time as any to mention that the way that a lot of people relate to is to call into the prayer is not correct. A lot of people treat is to Hatha as if it's kind of this
practice of divination
or fortune telling, or Omen reading, right? You go and you praise the Hara. And then you you sit quietly, and you wait for the sign
to come and tell you what to do. And then you're crazy because you you look at this thing and you say, Oh, well, maybe this means I should do it. And then something else happened. You say, Oh, maybe that means I shouldn't do it.
That's not the way that it's the hardest to be done. It's the harder is to be done with a specific intention to want to do something.
Okay, but what you're doing is you're you are relinquishing the results.
You're saying, Yeah, Allah, I want to do this thing, this is the decision that I've made.
If it's good for me, in the true sense of what's good, bring it close, let it happen.
If it's not good for me, bring it take it away from me.
And so you're relinquishing the results, you're realizing that you want to do something, you make the prayer, you try to do it.
And then if it happens, then you know that Allah deem that to be good for you. And if it doesn't happen, if it is prevented from happening, if it falls through, then you know that Allah has taken that away from you. So you're covered either way. It's not this kind of superstitious practice.
Good. So that was number two. Let's just have one more out of the four. Let's have one more. So we had delayed gratification. We have it coincides with advice and prayer. How is what's another way to tell between? What's the suggestion that the intellect
is making? And what's the suggestion that your impulse is making?
If there is clear motive.
Could you say more?
Not sure what you mean?
Sure, if greed is attached to it, oh, maybe you mean like a conflict of interest? Yeah. By if you if what you mean by clear motive is like a Yeah. Oh, yeah, that's, that's very, that's well done. Yes. If there's a conflict of interest, because the impulse, that urge only looks towards what is going to benefit the self.
So if something is just a little too convenient,
then you can pretty much rest assured that that is your lower self talking that that is your how
your impulse, your urge. Whereas if there's something that doesn't stand to benefit you, or even better, if it's actually against you, your immediate material interests, then you can rest assured that that is the opposite of talking. That's the intellect. Good. We also said, this is similar to this point, because there's like cost benefit analysis, seeing the pros and the cons, the intellect is, is able to see both sides of the story, the intellect is able to see the pros of a situation and the cons of a situation and making a decision as to Okay. It's not a perfectly good situation, but it's worth the negative aspects in order to get this positive thing, or vice versa. Whereas the
lower self, the how the desire, the impulse, the urge, it can't even register, what might go wrong. Right? It's complete wishful thinking.
You see how kind of all of these different four relate to each other? Because if the friend if a good friend proposes a possible way in which this could blow up in your face, the house always has an excuse, ready? No, that's not going to happen that no, no.
And then the final way was kind of how the argument is structured. We said that, when it came to the intellect, the intellect, structures, an argument based off of proof,
that ways matters. It comes to a conclusion based off of the strength of that proof, whether it's a logical proof or whether it's experience, right, you saw that a similar situation happens to someone that you know.
Whereas the impulse that goes off of only feels, right, what's going to feel right. And we live in a regrettable age where modern marketing has all these platitudes that enable that part of us that succumb to wishful thinking. You only live once, loosen up, indulge, go ahead, don't think just do it. All these sorts of things. All are kind of channeling the base self, the impulse the how
because they're trying to
just tell you to go for it because you feel like it. Right? Very good. So that was most of what we talked about. Last class
talked about the only I'm alone the only out of shaytaan.
Today, we're going to return to all of us for honeys, three capacities that we're going to talk about.
He's going to start to enter into the conversation of okay, nuts and bolts, what do we have to do to purify these things?
So what were the three capacities that every human being has, who can remind us
the three capacities of which each of which needs to be developed, so that it becomes
its perfect form, which is the macadam machete. And each one of them can fall into an extreme on either side?
Morning, Good, those were the correct outcomes of those capacities, but there's a capacity, which can lead to knowledge and wisdom. And if it's abused, and neglected, will lead to ignorance and that capacity is thought, right? So Allah gives you the capacity, he's created you with the capacity. And remember what a lot of Elsa honey was saying. The human being is a potentiality. Right? We come in as just potential work, we need work, before we can be Khalifa before we can be
live up to our true purpose. But we have these capacities that are supposed to get there, get us there, right. So one of those is thoughts. So the thought is the capacity, the capacity is neutral by itself. If we take care of it, we treat it right. It will end up being knowledge and wisdom.
If we abuse it, or neglect it, it's going to become cunning, conniving, or it's going to become ignorance. Right? This this all probably jog your memories. The second capacity was urge. And by that we're talking about the urge for the bodily urges, food principle among them food and sex.
Right? The capacity by itself is fine. It's a creation of a law. It's a gift from Allah. If we take care of it,
and sculpt it and train it and tame it. It will become generosity, and chastity.
If we abuse it, it will become gluttony. If we neglect it, it will become atrophy or kind of
not caring about anything numbness.
And the final one was anger.
Anger is a God given capacity.
It's neither good nor bad, in and of itself. If we cultivate it, and perfect it, it can become bravery.
It can become forbearance, and it can become justice.
If we abuse it,
it will become aggression and oppression. And if we neglect it,
it can become cowardice. Right? So those are the three capacities.
So now he's going to talk about how we're supposed to reform what's the means that we take to refine these capacities to get to the goal.
The target that Allah wants us to get with each of them so that we are eligible to become Allah's representatives on earth.
thoughts, the capacity of thoughts through education?
He mentioned this before now he's going to go into a little bit more detail. What's What are the more specific goals what type of education are we looking about? Are we looking about information?
Most education today is merely information. Information can lead to knowledge but it doesn't often lead to wisdom.
We found out how to split the atom. We went right ahead and created a bomb that can kill millions of people in one swipe.
Right some of the highest paid scientists in our society work on creating more and more destructive weapons.
This is a misuse
This is knowledge without wisdom. So what are the sub goals are the specific goals of education, such that we are refining the capacity of thought to produce, not just knowledge, but knowledge and wisdom.
The first thing that a lot of us for honey says
is that the one of the goals of education is to distinguish between what is true, and what is false theologically,
to be able to tell the difference between what is theological truth, and theological falsehood.
We can get at some of what this means by recalling something, the clip from some weeks back when we started with sort of some folk on how allow spreads out all of these criteria for what is divinity,
because a lot of respects our intellect, because He created it within us. And so he addresses us by our intellect, he doesn't produce for us a thing that is completely repulsive to the intellect, and then tells us well, you just have to believe in it.
He tells us no divinity
has to meet these criteria.
It has to be everlasting. It has to be free from need.
It has to be all powerful, it has to be all knowing it has to be able to communicate guidance.
It has to be able to
achieve benefit and harm to the creation, all these sorts of criteria that Allah gives us, and then tells us take these criteria, apply them to what you see around you, you will quickly conclude that nothing in the created world deserves to be worshipped. Because nothing in the creative world is divine.
And the only thing that is Divine is the one Allah who is not created, and therefore he is the only one worthy of being worshipped. Right. So these are theological truths, to help you distinguish between truth and falsehood.
So if someone comes to you and tells you, Allah is really three, three, and one,
Father, Son, Holy Spirit, and a lot became a human being,
and it was nailed to a cross and killed.
With education, you can say that can't be because Allah the divine, has to be everlasting.
By necessity, could not have died, by necessity could not have been limited to a physical body, by necessity could not have needed to eat or drink or sleep or rest.
Go to the bathroom.
And so therefore, that is a theological falsehood.
Somebody comes to you and says, put a penny in your slipper. It'll give you good luck.
with the goal of distinguishing between theological truth and theological falsehood, we'll be able to equip you to say no, that can't be because there's absolutely no relation between putting a penny in my slipper and having some sort of benefit accrue to me.
If I wear a certain shirt, or I use a certain pen,
it's not going to get me a better test on this a better grade on this test, because there's no relationship between the two.
And Allah has not revealed any evidence to indicate that there would be a relationship with between the two.
And there is no observable relationship, statistical relationship between the two.
This is the ability to distinguish between theological truth and theological falsehood.
Someone comes to you and says, you have to approach this grave and pray to this saint in order for a lots of forgive you.
True education that has reformed the thought,
the capacity of thought
will enable you and equip you to say that this is a theological falsehood.
Because a law does not require
anybody in between his forgiveness and the ones to be forgiven. A law can forgive directly. He's not in need of sending a son or sending a particular middleman, through which there's only the possibility of asking that certain person doing acts of worship that were not mentioned or revealed via
Revelation that there's no evidence for in order to get this good. So this is one of the main goals of education, proper education, Islamic education, as the ability
to differentiate between theological truth and theological falsehood.
And it stands, mentioning at this point that, while it's true, a lot of people refer to the fitrah. Right? It's true. Allah has created within us a disposition and innate creative disposition
that leans towards what is theologically true.
However, this too, is a capacity. And it's a capacity that could be corrupted or abused or neglected.
Which is what explains
the fact that people often are not able to stay upon this fitrah they are raised within a culture and that culture teaches them things, shapes for them what is normal.
And so they practice what they're given.
If the fitrah were a perfected,
then it would not fall prey to those sorts of cultural influences. However, it's not a final product, it's a potential, a capacity that needs to be molded, that needs to be perfected.
By this sort of education, the education, the first goal of which
is to differentiate between theological truth and theological falsehood. The second goal of this education, true education, Islamic education, that purifies the capacity of thoughts, is to be able to distinguish between true speech and false speech.
To be able to distinguish between true speech and false speech,
whether it has to do with the inconsistency of the information, it contradicts itself. Or it has to do with the consistency of the information as applied to your other experience in the world.
Or if it has to do with the quality or the characteristics or the trustworthiness of the person who is relaying that information.
This is why Allah subhanaw taala only chose
pure people, known people, honest people as his messengers, he never once took a foreign person and sent them into a different communities to preach a message to them, he chose someone from that group, because that group would have known that person their entire lives, and therefore would have trusted them.
Not just that they've known them, but they've known them to be honest.
Allah never chooses a dishonest messenger.
And so this is one of the goals of education in order to be able to evaluate who is
an honest, reliable narrator of information and who isn't, does the information makes sense, in and of itself, and when applied to what we observe around us. This is the second goal of education.
And the third goal, I'll mention the third goal, and then I'll go back, backtrack to the second one for a second
is to be able to distinguish between beautiful actions and disgusting, repulsive actions.
We'll get back to that in a second.
The previous goal of education
to distinguish between beautiful to distinguish between true speech and false speech.
That should stress to us the importance of being a truthful, believable, reliable person.
Because even though we would like to be able to convince people,
non Muslims essentially, of
the truth of Islam
the simple fact is, and Allah is aware of this fact and accounted for this fact in whom he chose for the messengers.
That people will not believe you if you are not a trustworthy messenger.
If you don't practice what you preach,
if you don't live your faith that your calling to
no one will believe you
You tell them about Islam.
They won't believe that you're a person that's worth trusting.
The Prophet Muhammad sallallahu alayhi salam
when he was first commanded to expand the message of Islam, to more than just his immediate family,
he gathered everybody, his entire tribe, upon the Mount suffer, and Mecca.
And he asked them a question.
The question he asked them was, what would you say?
If I were to tell you that behind this mountain, there is an enemy army that has come to attack us?
They said, We have never known you to speak a lie.
We have always known you to be truthful.
And so we would believe you.
Look at how the Prophet Muhammad Sallallahu Sallam established the proof against them
so then he said, so Allah holiday was so no. Well, I gathered you here to tell you that I am a messenger from Allah.
And my message to you is to stop worshipping these idols and only worship Allah.
They have already hung themselves by their own noose to use the expression. They've already incriminated themselves. All of their excuses. Oh, he this is all just stories, fables? Is this why you gathered us here all of the things that's all.
They already convicted themselves and bore witness against themselves. So we have to keep this in mind. This is the single most important thing if we want people to take us seriously. We have to be consistent. We have to practice what we preach. And we have to be honest.
So the first call was being able the first of the three goals of education, distinguishing between what is theologically true and theologically false, distinguishing between true speech and false speech and the last one to distinguish between beautiful actions and repulsive actions.
What do we mean by this last one?
We mean, being able to identify
which actions are truly beneficial to both mind and body so right the entire human being, and which actions are truly harmful. Think about some of the Muslims in Mecca before
they became Muslims or before Islam came to them. The Prophet Muhammad sallallahu alayhi wa sallam, he never once worshipped idols. He never once drank alcohol. He never once did any of these deeds that were considered repulsive.
Was he given revelation for that? Before he was 40 years old? No, he was not.
But he had
an ability and intelligence to be able to distinguish between
what was a beautiful action and what was a repulsive action. And he chose the beautiful actions. This happened with many companions, with Abu Bakr with Mossad, even a man
with Earth man, all people who are known before Islam, to have this inclination to realize that these sorts of vices,
that all of these things were vices, that they were repulsive revolts of actions, and they stayed away from them even before Islam.
That's the type of education that we're talking about. Because we have again, I always bring up marketing because marketing is an extremely powerful force. Do you have any idea how many dollars are spent in the United States every year for alcohol companies
to perpetuate myths, that alcohol is really not that that
gambling as well.
They've handed it out. We've arrived at a place where cigarette companies can no longer do this sort of thing, but for a long time they did for a long time they did. Even the sugar industry funds research, trying to pin the blame of diabetes on fats, instead of blaming it on sugars.
So what we
See here is
the hola okay? Like we said like Dr. messin said we see a vested interest,
a conflict of interest where these groups are trying to beautify what is repulsive
or at least make it seem innocent, but no, usually usually trying to beautify it, especially in movies and music,
the hip hop videos, and eat rock'n'roll videos and all these sorts of things where this type of lifestyle is glorified. Substance abuse,
even depression, even suicidal tendencies
are glorified. They're made, they're romanticized. They're made to seem cool, they're made to seem edgy, they're made to seem attractive.
These actions and habits and choices which are in and of themselves repulsive and reprehensible vice sin.
There's billions and billions of dollars that goes into beautifying them
so that people will consume them and make money for those who sell them.
So one of the goals of education and Islamic education is to be able to see things for how they truly are to be able to look at an action and say that this is reverse of this is vice.
And this action is beautiful. This is exactly this is righteousness, this is piousness.
And it's enough for us to know that there are many, many, many forces that are trying to
flip everything entirely. Trying to make a beautiful action such as chastity.
Make them look
Oh, they're sexually frustrated, in cells, all these sorts of things that permeate the culture, trying to make it look bad and denigrate it, something that is beautiful.
And vice versa, trying to take something that is reverse of those responsible for people dying, or becoming addicted, or responsible for splitting up families, wasting untold amounts of wealth, and trying to take that thing and beautify it and make it seem like it's not just okay. But something to celebrate.
This tells us that Islam, we do believe in objective truth. We do believe in objective morals. And that's not to say that there aren't exceptional situations.
Because a lot of times these things get conflated. A lot of times people in order to try to disprove
having any sort of moral standards
or objective values will take a very rare extreme situation and act as if that invalidates all kind of normative claims
about what's right and what's wrong.
No, we believe in dispensation exceptions, license for certain scenarios. However,
situation, the rule of the day, the default the basis is that we believe in objective morality. We believe in objective values. We believe that there are things that are inherently good, and things that are inherently evil when it comes to actions.
So this is all about training, restraining focusing, taming
thoughts, the first capacity.
The second capacity, and we're going to have a later chapter about this is the urge, right? Like we said, mostly food and sex.
It is restrained and tamed and focused by a restraint by purposeful indulgence, purposeful and timely, indulgence in those things under a
context of responsibility and accountability. This is why
we have marriage and we believe in marriage as Muslims because Islamic law is telling us that every single fulfillment of a sexual need must come in the context of relationships that where there is accountability, and responsibility.
And so if you take that sexual need and if you fulfill it outside of that context of responsibility and accountability, disaster happens, disaster to the individual disaster to a family disaster to society.
So being able to restrain the urge to only operate within a certain
a certain area or certain scenarios or certain context and for the third capacity which is anger, to discipline it, to tame it to focus it
until it becomes courage until it becomes forbearance
and this also includes training the soul to not fear undue criticism what other people are going to say
we are pretty much out of time. There's a lot more to get to
but we'll have to stop there for today.
Anybody have any questions? Comments concerns?
are we good? Thank you very much everybody.
Thank you very much for your participation in your attention and interaction and inshallah we will see you again soon for one of the classes or next week in sha Allah. I mean, we said Armonico went off to live look at