All of a person’s moral values, character, the characteristics unique to him, his moods, pleasures and abilities are all shaped in the soul. If a person so wishes, and by Allah’s leave, he can greatly increase his power of the soul.
What must a person do to increase the power of the soul?
How does increasing the power of the soul benefit a person?
A person can only take the maximum delight from all forms of blessing, physical or spiritual, by raising the power of the soul. That person will interpret every matter he encounters, at all times and in all places, by reflecting and employing his conscience and reason. And he will strive to give every delight and blessing its just due. And in return for that person’s sincere endeavors, Allah will cause him to experience deep joys at every moment of his life. Loving, being loved, being a friend and confidant, feeling respect, feeling mutual trust, enjoying the beauties created for human beings by Allah and all the blessings of this world, both great and small, these things are like a bottomless treasure for such a person, filled with deep delights. For believers, the depth that Allah creates in the soul with this fervor and these emotions are matchless and incomparably greater than the technical delights enjoyed by other people.
How can a person increase the power of the soul?
Increasing the power of the soul has no limits. If one is determined, uses one’s will properly and exhibits patience, then one can achieve an undreamed of depth of faith and moral virtue. One can obtain a force and richness of soul one had never known or experienced before.
Having taken that decision, there are certain steps a person has to take in order to give depth to his soul, improve his moral values and enhance his character:
Making the Body and Soul obedient: One must first of all establish specific objectives and show oneself that one can stick to them, no matter how hard that may be, and impose one’s will on one’s earthly desires, both body and soul. One must prove to oneself that one can make no concessions on translating a matter one has decided on into reality, demonstrating power of will and not giving up. The objectives one determines at this stage may be physical actions, such as to go on a diet for a certain amount of time, exercise regularly or to be very industrious. The important thing here is for the person to become used to displaying will power, sticking to a decision and not giving up, even if it seems difficult. It is to make his body obedient.
Using the Power of the Will: Once a person has become disposed to training, he must start imposing his will on the soul as well as on the body, and must use his will power to the fullest extent in order to do that. He must again set himself various targets and convince his brain to carry them out. These may be objectives such as never to be irritable, to use a pleasant tone of voice or to speak clearly and comprehensibly.
A person may intend to keep his body and soul at a most effective and industrious level. He may decide to adopt a joyous state of mind, to look positively at and think the best of everyone and to make that new mindset his new lifestyle. He may intend to improve the peace and happiness of those around him and to live by a perspective that thinks more of others than of himself. And as a result he may oblige his body and soul to implement all these decisions.
How does increasing the power of the soul benefit a person?
By Allah’s leave, mercy and help, a person can increase the power of his soul very quickly, even within just a few days, by behaving in a careful and determined manner, and can enjoy great results. Every time he achieves a result he must set a new intention and thus attain a deeper state of soul and a more profound power of the soul. Some of the many benefits he will enjoy when the power of his soul is enhanced are:
- It is Instrumental in Establishing a Close Bond with Allah: Every increase in the depth of the soul will be instrumental in having a better knowledge and appreciation of Allah, loving our Lord with a greater love and passion and fearing Him with an even greater awe. It will permit the person to better understand the delights created by Allah, to see the deep signs of these more clearly and to love them even more.
- It will Establish Profound Peace and Happiness in the Soul: In addition, both the person concerned and everyone else around him will delight in the changes taking place in his soul. He will experience the peace and delight that comes from having a more positive state of mind regarding life, the world, events and other people. As a result of the excellent moral virtues he lives by, Allah will install a love, affection and respect and warmth toward that person in other people’s hearts.
- It will Be Instrumental in His Being More Virtuous: If a person wishes he will have the means to strive to improve himself. In the same way, he also has the means to be a highly virtuous person and, even more, to possess very lofty moral values. There are no obstacles that will stand in a person’s way. As Allah says in one verse, “So have fear of Allah, as much as you are able to,...” (Surat at-Taghabun, 16). Therefore, a person has a responsibility to do all in his power and achieve the best possible results. Someone who feels a deep fear and love of Allah in his heart can, with the strength imparted by that faith and by Allah’s leave, achieve a most perfect level of moral virtue.
- One Can Properly Appreciate the Blessings of This World: Someone who uses his mind and reason to enhance the power of his soul can see the detail in all the blessings set before him. The depth and detail of the effect established in such a person’s soul whenever he encounters any blessing will be proportionate to his understanding. This applies to every blessing in this world. The delights bestowed by an attractive person, a pretty view, a finely decorated work of art, lovely music, an impressive design, a cute animal, the matchless flavors in foods or the way a well prepared table pleases the eye are all directly proportionate to the power of one’s soul.
- One Will Greatly Enjoy One’s Spiritual Blessings: Very deep feelings go along with love, respect, loyalty and devotion, affection, compassion, friendship, sharing confidences, being patient with someone because one loves them, faithfulness to those one loves, considerate of others, tolerance, modesty, forgiveness, honesty, honoring and supporting the other person, and trusting and backing them up. Someone who enhances the power of his soul will look at these feelings with great delight and enjoy the fervor they establish in the soul to the very greatest extent.
The greatest benefit from increasing the power of the soul will become apparent in the Hereafter
In addition to the benefits in this world that come from increasing the power of the soul, Allah will also, insha’Allah, create the finest blessings in the Hereafter for His servants who honestly and determinedly strive for His approval. Allah describes in the Qur’an the blessings He will bestow on His faithful servants in the Hereafter. In paradise, people will be created free of all flaws, weaknesses and imperfections and in such a way as to be able to satisfy all their desires instantaneously. The power of soul they acquire in this world will be increased still further in the Hereafter, and by Allah’s leave the delight they take from the blessings in paradise will reach the very highest levels, insha’Allah:
“Race each other to forgiveness from your Lord and a Garden as wide as the heavens and the earth, prepared for the people who have fear:” (Surat al-‘Imran, 133)
Allah has bestowed a most perfect power of soul on people. The delights, benefits and comfort are different for people who increase the power of their souls and make proper use of it.
One can measure the depth of the soul by asking oneself questions:
Allah places beauties of all kinds at human beings’ disposal in the life of this world. However, he has made the question of who enjoys which blessing how much dependent on their deep reflection and reasoning in the light of faith. And this important truth applies to all physical and spiritual blessings in this world. By Allah’s leave, a person can measure the depth in his soul by asking himself a few questions and can enhance the power of his soul still further by using his will and reason. One must ask oneself the following questions:
• Do I enjoy every blessing in this world to the greatest possible extent?
• Or are there dimensions of flavor and profound feelings and delights I am unaware of?
• Are there beauties in my life I pass by unaware of?
• What could I gain or lose by adopting a completely different perspective that will lead me to live in a totally different world?
• Or what have I gained so far by thinking superficially and looking at things simplistically, never exerting any effort at all?
• If I can taste delights I have never known from the blessings I possess, why should I not strive to acquire such a perspective?
It must not be forgotten that one can only derive the maximum level of delight from all forms of physical and spiritual blessing through “faith.” To have faith means “to think.” A person will reflect on all matters and at all times and places, using his reason and conscience. And he will strive to give every delight and blessing its due. In return for such a person’s sincere endeavors, Allah will bestow deep delights at every moment of his life. Loving, being loved, being a friend and confidant, feeling respect, feeling mutual trust, enjoying the beauties created for human beings by Allah and all the blessings of this world, both great and small, these things are like a bottomless treasure for such a person, filled with deep delights. For believers, the depth that Allah creates in the soul with this fervor and these emotions are matchless and incomparably greater than the technical delights enjoyed by other people.