How Do I Care for My Soul? Part Two

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The following is a transcript of a khutba by Shaykh Mokhtar Maghraoui. It contains minor modifications from the spoken word for ease of readability.

3. Remember Allah Ceaselessly

With that, to be mindful of the spiritual reality, is to be very, very, most-frequently in dhikr of Allah ‘azza wa jall. This is well-established in ‘ilm among fuqaha, ‘ulama, ‘awlia [jurists, scholars, and saints]. But rare are those of us who are steadfast in practicing that, even of people of ‘ilm. Rasulullah taught simple adhkar to be said after ṣalah and said, “But few are those people who practice it.” When asked why most people do not establish or be steadfast in that, he replied that after we finish ṣalah Shaytan comes and suggests to us something important and legitimate that we need to do. We intellectualize that. Scholars and callers do a lot of intellectualizations.

Rasulullah , the busiest of human beings and the most beautiful of intellect, was always in dhikr. Even in his moments of quietude and being silent, he was in dhikr. Even when he slept, he was in dhikr. His heart was always in dhikr. He said, “My eyes sleep, but my heart never does.” And a mu’min (believer) who is aware of these dimensions and prioritizes the spiritual envelope in which everything is to be put – Allah ‘azza wa jall by His grace may give him, if not a glimpse, even a real experience of having a qalb in dhikr of Allah even when asleep! And that does not come without efforts.

4. Beg Allah for Help

A lot of du’a, fourthly. “Du’a is the ‘ibādah.” Du’a is the umbilical cord that connects the human to the Divine. It’s the cord of spiritual life. A person who does not even enjoy du’a – what else is left? If even du’a I am lazy about, then what else can I do, if du’a I do not do? And yet du’a is described by Rasulullah , as elucidated in the Qur’an, as theibādah. [He says], “And your Lord says: "Call on Me” – (it’s an amr (command)!) – “I will answer you: but those who are too arrogant to do My ‘ibādah will surely find themselves in Hell in humiliation."” [Surah Ghāfir 40:60]. The scholars say that the term ‘ibādah in this ayah refers to du’a. Therefore one who does not have a regular diet of du’a of Allah ‘azza wa jall is a person who is arrogant (mutakabbir).

5. Be Continually Aware of the Beyond

A spiritual dimension emphasizes and means that our being – our emotions, not only our intellect – are constantly aware of the Beyond. The spiritual realm of malakūti existence, if you will, of the Hereafter, of life after death, of the barzakhi existence and reality, of the angelic realities. Earlier I was in a conversation with a beloved brother who mentioned that nowadays in this country he thinks we should visit graves even more so. Maybe in some other places maybe you may deemphasize that, but now and here you must emphasize that even further. Because that’s a means to connecting to the realm of the spiritual. “Visit the graves,” said Rasulullah , “they remind you of akhira.” Akhira is a spiritual reality – and consciousness of akhira is a spiritual dimension. If we do not connect with that dimension we will stay excessively and abusively attached to the material world and reality, and become dry and dry and dry.

My dear brothers and sisters, I conclude with this: We must make efforts to change within us.

إِنَّ اللَّـهَ لَا يُغَيِّرُ مَا بِقَوْمٍ حَتَّىٰ يُغَيِّرُوا مَا بِأَنفُسِهِمْ

“Truly God will not change the condition of a people until they change that which is in themselves.” [Surat ar-Ra’d, 13:11]

Social, political, economic, civilizational change – the root of all those changes is the change inside of you. I must do work. It does not come without effort. A spiritual dimension is a higher dimension. To be at that level requires a higher level of work to be done, [in order] to get to that level and produce order inside of our hearts.

My dear brother and sisters, the simplest way to begin is what we mentioned. The easiest way is du’a: “Ya Allah, I plead to You. I am bankrupt. I am sick. I am arrogant. I am deluded. I am ostentatious. I am conceited. I am discontent. I am angry. And I know that. I do not hide it.” That’s where it starts.

“Ya Allah, please help me. O Allah, purify my heart! Purify my heart! Purify my heart! Liberate my heart from my self. Ya Allah, liberate me from the yokes of my own shortcomings and negative energies. Please. Help me.”

Nobody reaches Allah without Allah.