Saturday, October 8, 2011

Spiritual Growth

Have you been reciting the same four surahs of the Quran or Biblical passages for the past ten years? Have you been using the same hadith to defend a certain thing you do/ do not do since you started practicing Islam? Are you a Christian that has never been to a different church and never met new people who may worship the Lord differently than you? Well, I think it is time for some spiritual growth.

Typical scenario: woman is searching for the meaning of life > she does much research looking into different religions > she finds Islam and is intrigued and enlightened > she takes classes, studying the deen day and night and is inspired > woman embraces Islam as her religion > woman finds a masjid, makes friends, marries, and Whamo! Contentment creeps in. She still loves the deen, but the vigor she once had to better herself and learn more about her religion has subsided.

We can find a million and one excuses to not learn more and then as the years go by, slowly but surely our contentment turns into stubbornness and arrogance. And this goes for converts and well as those born into the religion. A sister who was born into a Muslim family once told me, “When you are raised in a Muslim household, it is important that you rediscover the religion as an adult.” The sister warned, for those who do not continue to learn into adulthood, their Islam can be a confusion of culture, ritual and heresy.

It is important that we in the human race grow and develop. Stagnation of the mind and the spirit can be a very dangerous thing. This is how racism and prejudice become imbedded into a culture; when people don’t educate themselves, they will adhere to the ways of old, without any real reasoning or contemplation on their part.

Idleness is the enemy. Every second that goes by should be devoted to something constructive. Whether it is taking on a new language, painting, feeding the homeless or just good old fashioned reading, we much keep our minds active. If we train our minds to seek knowledge constantly in the secular world, we will automatically yearn to seek knowledge and understanding in the spiritual world. We will ask questions and we will enjoy looking for the answers.

And Surah Luqman makes it clear:

31:6      But there are, among men, those who purchase idle tales, without knowledge (or meaning), to mislead (men) from the Path of Allah and throw ridicule (on the Path): for such there will be a Humiliating Penalty.

31:7      When Our Signs are rehearsed to such a one, he turns away in arrogance, as if he heard them not, as if there were deafness in both his ears: announce to him a grievous Penalty.

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