The Real Disease of the Desolate Heart

Ever wondered why, despite the multitude of blessings we’re surrounded by, our hearts get desolate, and there are bottomless voids in them that never seem to get fulfilled? Fiqh ul Quloob gives us a deep insight into this:

لذا فكل ما يتنافس فيه الناس من أمور الدنيا، وملاحقة الشهوات، واتباع الأهواء، وعبادة المال، كله غرور وباطل، يعرِّض العبد للعقوبة والألم، ويملأ قلبه بالوحشة والحسرة في الدنيا والآخرة.

Roughly translated, this goes:

“So all that which people compete in from among worldly matters, and the pursuit of desires, and following of the whims, and the worship of money – all of it deception and falsehood – presents the slave to torment and pain, and fills his heart with wretchedness and regret in this world and the hereafter.”

So materialism – slavery to the attractions of the duniya – is often the root cause of that unexplained desolation and restlessness in the heart. The worship of wealth, and the pursuit of desires and whims, and the blind race for the highest of luxury and living standards – all these lead to nothing but torment for the heart, both in the duniya and the akhirah.

Trouble is, we don’t accept these causes of sadness to be causes at all – we justify their existence, we justify their presence in our lives, justify our pursuit of these things, and we negate the possibility that our blind rat-race could be causing the void we feel inside. So we never get to the root of our problem: materialism, and excessive love for the duniya.

That is why istighfar (seeking forgiveness) is a guaranteed solution to the sorrow and heaviness of the heart – it washes away the burden and the filth that we accumulate on our hearts through our preferring the duniya above the One Who created it for us!

So beware. Beware of materialism. Beware of the slavery of desires. Beware of allowing the duniya to enter your heart! For surely, materialism takes the heart towards nothing but torment.

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