What would happen if you came to know that you’ve been afflicted with a deadly disease? What would you do?
There can be three ways of dealing with the situation.
1) You would seek the best doctor available and get it treated as soon as possible.
2) You would simply go to a pharmacy without consulting any doctor and try to get a medicine on your own.
3) You would choose to be careless about it and allow the disease to get worse.
The answer is quite predictable. You would definitely choose the first option and so would anyone else in a similar situation. Why? Because, if you do not get your disease treated then it will worsen and eventually lead to a painful end.
SubhanAllah, the certainty of the potential danger can make one go to extremes in order to avoid its consequences. One would consult an expert, listen to him, obey him and avoid all that he would require him to, despite his love for that particular thing. Why? Because he trusts the expert and believes that the doctor knows what he is saying and is his well wisher.
We take utmost care to nurture and nourish our body in every aspect, while neglecting even the basic needs of our souls, until it has weakened to the extent that the body along with its lowly desires take over the feeble soul leaving it completely drained.
Allah (subhanahu wa ta’alaa) has created us with both body and soul. Hence, He has provided for both of them with rizq (provision) for body and hidayah(guidance) as a rizq for the soul. In fact, He has made it obligatory for us to nurture them both by not only taking care of the rizq of the body but also the soul. How can we hope to live a balanced life with an unbalanced system where the body is nurtured and the soul is starved?
When it comes to the diseases of heart and soul, such as hypocrisy, jealousy, malice, ungratefulness, suspicion etc, we tragically choose either the second scenario or the third where we try to find a cure for our disease either by self educating ourselves about deen or by accepting the advice of someone who doesn’t have enough knowledge of deen, or by seeking the advise of those who themselves doubt the shariah and rely on ‘I think’, ‘in my opinion’, ‘but if only’.
Worse is when we don’t even acknowledge our disease while heading towards utter destruction, for this recognition of the internal disease would mean stepping out of the temporary comfort zone that we have cocooned around ourselves.
Despite recognising this fact of life and dreading the consequences, why then do we not take any preventive measures? Why do we not consult the experts? It can mean that either we do not consider the matter grave or significant enough to be addressed on a serious note or we are not ready to give up on all that we love because a treatment requires giving up certain things we like, to gain back what we’ve lost.
Growing distress, depression, anxiety, stress, all are by products of us neglecting the requirements of our undernourished soul, which results in an unstable society with an increasing number of suicides, divorces, murders and other such problems. Hence, the only solution is to establish a way of life as taught by the Creator, both at an individual level and collectively. We need to take significant notice of the needs of the soul and take preventive measures against its diseases, just as we would for our physical self.