A Blessed Heart

41 A BLESSED HEART (Zakaria Virk) The Glorious Quran makes many references to the human heart. The Book of Almighty Allah proclaims numerous merits of a sound heart, a heart full of unbounded love and deep understanding of God and His mankind. For instance the Quran proclaims “Lo, it is in the remembrance of Allah that hearts can find comfort” (13:28). And Allah admonishes Muslims that: He united your hearts in love” (3:104) and that He “put your hearts at rest” (3:127). That the heart is the seat of all human emotions is a well known fact. A heart that is-full of evil emotions and thoughts is but a favourite place for Satan. Those hearts that are disbelieving, . doubtful and mischief-mongering are, according to the Glorious Quran, hearts that have been sealed, God Almighty says in His book “Thus do we seal the hearts of transgressors” (10:75) and “I will cause terror into the hearts of those who disbelieve”. (8:12) ; Scientific research has conclusively proved that there is a vital connection between the state of one’s thinking and one’s physical well-being. A healthy heart will undoubtedly keep a healthy mind and vice versa. A person’s character is built on thoughts, in other words we are what we think. Allah, our merciful Lord, has through His benevolence has given us the choice and power to govern our thoughts and thereby build a character that is worthy of praise. An immoral character grows from the seeds of immoral thoughts while a virtuous character grows from the seeds of virtuous thoughts. As mentioned earlier the heart is where all kinds of good or bad thoughts are born, therefore, it is imperative to cultivate a pure and clean heart. A recent article in the Psychology Today dated Feb. 1989, illustrates the relationship between heart and soul: . “Scientific medicine has made extraordinary progress against heart disease by denying one of mankind’s most romantic notions: That our emotions centre in the heart. By treating the heart as an unfeeling pump, surgeons have been able to create pacemakers and work their way up to the ultimate in high-tech medicine- the artificial heart. Even as Barney Clark and other courageous patients were using chemistry, scientists were using psychology and hard data to discover 42 REVIEW OF REUGIONS that trouble in the heart may come in part from sickness of the soul. Spiritual need may be the underlying crisis among the people prone to have heart attacks. Harvard cardiologist Herbert Benson agrees. Dr. Benson has shown how using a repetitive prayer produces sharp reductions in heart beat and blood pressure. At the University of Maryland, psychologist James Lynch continues to explore the psychological side of high blood pressure. Blood pressure goes up when we talk and down when we really listen to another person-.” The following quotation from the Bible is worth pondering “As a man thinketh in his heart, so he is “.(Proverbs 23:7) DIFFERENT STATES OF THE HEART Just as there are various states of mind, likewise there are different states of heart. Acccording to the Oxford dictionary the heart is the seat of emotions, soul, mind, courage etc. When one is thankful to a person, one thanks him from the bottom of one’s heart, and when one is stricken with grief, ft is heart- rending. If a person is courageous, we call him lion-hearted and to describe sincerity we say it is heart-felt. An unexpected piece of news or an event which can break one’s heart and to understand the essence of a matter is getting to the heart of the matter. Lest we forget to mention the change of .heart, it is one of the human traits that has not been bestowed to any other creature. Some people have a change of heart too often and others have a heart made of rock. A sincere Muslim is one who always examines his heart from time of time to see if his feelings towards others are tender, his motives are honest, he is loving towards others and his heart is in constant search of truth and love of God. Such a heart is decidedly an epitome of love, kindness, courage, affection, honesty, truth, sincerity and humility. Jesus, peace be upon him, is supposed to have said: “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul and with all thy mind.” The Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, has also described the importance of a pure and sincere heart. According to the most reliable book of Hadith, Al-Bukhari, he told one of his companion. BLESSED HEART 43 In the body there is a piece of flesh, when it is healthy the whole body is healthy and when it becomes unhealthy the whole body gets unhealthy; and that piece is the heart. This beautiful quotation illustrates that a human heart is the fountainhead of all our emotions. If one’s heart entertains pure thoughts then all of one’s deeds will be towards the road of virtue. But if one’s heart is full of vicious thoughts and ideas then one is bound to follow the path of vice. Thoughts and ideas born in a heart are like the seeds in a field that soon sprout into full grown crops. Purity of heart stimulates the growth of the tree of virtue. Hazrat Ahmad, the Holy Founder of the Ahmadiyya Movement, has said that Righteousness is the root of aE virtue. The truth of the matter is that if one’s heart is in good shape, then one’s hands, feet, tongue, mind and eyes will be in good shape as well. In our day to day contact with our friends, teachers, bankers, etc, one should always remember the following formula To handle yourself, use your head. To handle others use your heart. ********************************* continued from page 46 God Himself declares: ‘We have not sent thee (Muhammad) but as a bearer of glad tidings and as a wamer, for all mankind.’ (34:29) How blessed has been the progeny of Ishmael among whom God chose to raise the Holy Prophet of Islam as an., exemplar (33:22) and mercy (21:108) for all mankind to whom, in accordance with God’s- command, he conveyed the message of Islam: ‘O Messenger I convey to the people what has been revealed to thee from thy Lord (5:68) Blessed are they who pay heed to the divine message which God’s Messenger conveyed.