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Islam: God's Message of Guidance to Humanity

 

By Hassan Ali El-Najjar

Table of Contents  

 

I. Introduction: Basic Information   

 

1. Islam: A Brief Introduction    

 

2. Three Levels of Faith: Islam, Iman, and Ihsan    

 

3. The Scientific Evidence That God Exists and the Holy Qur'an Is His Message to Humanity    

 

4. Creation and Evolution in the Holy Qur'an   

 

5. Humans, As God's Caliphs on Earth   

 

6. Adam's Contest With the Angels, and Getting Out of Paradise  

 

7. Worshippers By Choice Or Forced Slaves?    

 

8. The Relationship Between the Spiritual and the Physical Aspects of Islamic Teachings    

 

9. Mind, Self, Soul, Spirit, and Happiness from an Islamic Perspective 

 

10. Heart-Mind Relationship in the Holy Qur'an    

 

II. Islam: The Five Pillars of the Faith Structure  

 

1. Islamic Proclamation of Faith  

 

2. Performing Islamic Prayers  

 

3. Giving Zakat, Charity, The Third Islamic Duty  

 

4. Fasting and Ramadhan, Great Gifts from Allah to Muslims  


5. Haj, Pilgrimage, the Fifth Pillar of Islam

 

III. Iman: Allah, His Angels, Messengers, Messages, Latter Day, and Qadar  

 

1. Allah, As He Described Himself in the Holy Quran    

 

2. Angels  

 

3. Noo'h, Noah, in the Holy Quran     

 

4. Ibrahim, Abraham, in the Holy Quran 

 

5. Moussa, Moses, in the Holy Quran  

 

6. 'Eissa, Jesus Christ, in the Holy Quran    

 

7. Muhammed in the Holy Quran   

 

8. Prophet Muhammed's Night Journey and Ascent to Heavens, Al-Issra Wal Mi'raj  

 

9. The Last Day, The Hour, Resurrection, Reckoning, and Judgment

 

10. God's Precise Measurement and His Just Decree, Al-Qadar Wal Qadha

 

IV. I'hsan: Watching Allah in What We Say and What We Do  

 

1. Introduction to Islamic Law, Shari'a, Part I, Prohibition, Don't Do, and Do Commands in the Holy Quran  

 

2. The La (No) Commands  

 

3. The Imperative Commands  


***

 

Articles with Islamic Perspective:

 

Health Care Crisis in the US: An Islamic Perspective

 

"Terrorism" & "Islamo-Fascism" Propaganda Campaigns: An Interactive Lecture

 

Six Questions About Islam, Muslims and Jews

Five Islamic Issues: Predestination and choice, position toward other religions, angels, and the End of Days

Food Islamic Rules and Teachings
 

 

Are Muslim women second-class citizens  

 

The French Ban on Islamic Headscarf, an Interview with

 

Links to Islamic Topics 2007-2010

 

Links to Islamic Topics 2007

 

Links to Islamic topics 2006

 

Links to Islamic topics 2005

 

Links to Islamic topics 2004

 

Links to Islamic topics, 2003

 

2002 Links to Islamic topics

 

 

Islam:

 

God's Message of Guidance to Humanity


I. 9

 

Mind, Self, Soul, Spirit, and Happiness, from an Islamic Perspective

 

By Hassan Ali El-Najjar

 

13th of Dhul Qaada, 1428 - November 24, 2007

 

Revised During Rabi' Al-Thani, 1438 - January, 2017  

 

*** 

 

 

1428 - 2007

 

  23 1438 -  21 2017

 

 ***

 

 

ٰ  

 

I seek refuge with God from the Stoned Shaytan

In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful

 

***

 

 

Introduction

 

The concepts of mind, self, soul, Spirit, and happiness are closely related in the Holy Quran. This Chapter attempts to explain some meanings of these concepts, their interconnectedness, and their relevance to Islamic teachings in general.

 

Scientists of our time have been able to clone animals. This has made it easier on people to believe that the All-Knowledgeable Creator, praise to Him, is capable of resurrecting the human body in the Day of Judgment. [1]

 

The current information revolution has demonstrated that information can be captured in diskettes, compacted disks (CDs), mobile audio-visual devices, and computer hard drives. Then, it can be transferred through space (from Earth to satellites orbiting our planet, then back to Earth, to be captured back by various devices). However, humans have neither been capable of transferring information directly from the human brain nor to it.

 

This is  the sphere of Allah (God), praise to Him, so far. He is the Creator of people, including scientists and internet innovators. He and His angels are capable of transferring information from our brains at the moment of death to a super computer somewhere in His universe, to be kept there until the Day of Judgment. He has not told us how He and His angels do that but assured us that we would know a little about it.

 

This is the human non-material component, which includes part of God's Spirit, the human mind, and the human self (nafs). While we, humans, have started studying the human brain, which incubates the accumulated information (the mind) and the processed information (the self), we know very little about God's Spirit, as stated in Verse 17: 85 of the Holy Quran.

 

 
ۡٔ ٱۖ ٱ ۡ ۡ ٓ ٱۡۡ ۬  ( 17: 85).


 
"They ask you about the Spirit. Say: "The Spirit is an issue of my Lord, and the knowledge you have been given is only a little" (Al-Issra, 17: 85). [2] 

 

These facts also mean that Allah, praise to Him, is capable of cloning the same individual and of transferring the information back to his/her brain, thus resurrecting humans in body and soul, to be ready for reckoning, on the Day of Judgment. [3]

 

 

Happiness, Good, and Evil

 

Those who truly believe in Allah and in His ability to resurrect them for reckoning would behave in a good way during their first life time on Earth. As a result, they will be rewarded with a good life here, by living in happiness, and in the hereafter by entering God's Paradise and enjoying a happy life there forever, as we read in Verse 16: 97 and in Verses 20: 124-127 of the Holy Quran.

 

ٰ  ۖ   ( 16: 97).

 

Whoever does righteousness, whether male or female, while he is a believer - We will surely cause him to live a good life, and We will surely give them their reward (in the Hereafter) according to the best of what they used to do (Al-Na'hl, 16: 97). 

 

Conversely, those who do not want to believe in the Day of Reckoning may act in an evil or a bad way during their life time on Earth. As a result, they will be punished by not living in peace and happiness in this life and by being punished in the Hellfire in the hereafter, as we read in Verse 3: 56 as well as in Verses 20: 124-127 and in Verses 11: 105-108 of the Holy Quran. 

 ( 3: 56).

 

And as for those who disbelieved, I will punish them with a severe punishment in this world and the Hereafter, and they will have no helpers" (Al-'Imran, 3: 56).  

 

ٰ ﴿١٢٤

 

ٰ ﴿١٢٥

 

 

ٰ  ۖ ٰ ٰ ﴿١٢٦

 

ٰ  ۚ ٰ ﴿١٢٧  ( 20: 124-127).

 

And whoever turns away from My remembrance - indeed, he will have a depressed life, and We will gather him on the Day of Resurrection blind." (124)

 

He will say, "My Lord, why have you raised me blind while I was [once] seeing?" (125)

 

(Allah) will say, "Thus did Our signs come to you, and you forgot them; and thus will you this Day be forgotten." (126)

 

And thus do We recompense he who transgressed and did not believe in the signs of his Lord. And the punishment of the Hereafter is more severe and more enduring (127) (Ta-Ha, 20: 124-127).  

ۚ

 

 

ۚ

 

ۖ ( 11: 105-108).

 

(In) a coming Day, no nafs (soul) shall speak except by His permission. Of those (gathered) some will be wretched and some will be happy.

 

Concerning those who are wretched, they will be in the Fire. For them therein exhaling and inhaling.

 

They will be everlasting therein, as long as the heavens and the earth last, except as your Lord wills, for your Lord is the Doer of what He wants.

And concerning those who will be happy, they will be in the Paradise, everlasting therein, as long as the heavens and the earth last, except as your Lord wills, an extended gift (Hood, 11: 105-108).

 

An important point in the discussion about the evidence used in reckoning, on the Day of Judgment, is that all human actions and words are recorded in voice and picture and will be presented to every human being in the form of a book (record), during the reckoning, as we read in Verses 6: 67, 86: 4, 99: 7-8, 3: 30, and 18: 49.

 

۬ ۡ۬ۚ ۡ ۡ  ( 6: 67). 

      

For every bit of news (information), there is a destination (to be saved in), and you will know it (Al-Ana'am, 6: 67).

  ( 86: 4).

 

There is no self (soul) but has a record keeper over it (Al-Tariq, 86: 4).

 

﴿٧﴾ ﴿٨  ( 99: 7-8).

 

So whoever does an atom's weight of good will see it, (7) And whoever does an atom's weight of evil will see it. (8) (Al-Zalzala, 99: 7-8). 

 

  ( 3: 30).

 

The Day every soul will find what it has done of good present [before it] and what it has done of evil (Al-'Imran, 3: 30).

 

ٰ  ۚ  ۗ   ( 18: 49).

 

And the record [of deeds] will be placed [open], and you will see the criminals fearful of that within it, and they will say, "Oh, woe to us! What is this book that leaves nothing small or great except that it has enumerated it?" And they will find what they did present [before them]. And your Lord does injustice to no one (Al-Kahf, 18: 49). 

 

Such audio-visual human record is even demonstrated now through the work of radio and TV stations, which broadcast events and interviews with people. Capturing such events and interviews is easy now, just by having the right equipment (radio and TV sets in this case). If humans can do that now, then it should be a given that their Creator is more capable of doing it than they are. This constitutes further evidence about the accountability humans are held to by God, Who will judge them according to what has been recorded about them, as mentioned in the above verses.

 

***

 

The two concepts of good and evil are not left to people to define. Otherwise, they may never agree on what constitutes each one of them. Allah, praise to Him, revealed His teachings about these concepts through the messages He sent to guide humanity. These messages were delivered by Gods messengers throughout human history. Some of these messengers were mentioned in the Holy Books, others were not mentioned. 

 

The Holy Quran mentions names of 25 Prophets and Messengers of God. These are Adam, Idrees (Anokh), Noo'h (Noah), Hood ('Aber), Saleh, Ibrahim (Abraham), Loot (Lot), Isma'il (Ishma'il), Is'haq (Isaac), Ya'aqoub (Jacob), Yousuf (Joseph), Shu'ayb, Ayoub (Jobe), Dhul Kifl, Younus (Jonah), Moussa (Moses), Haroon (Aaron), Elyas (Elijah), Elyasa'a, Dawood (David), Sulayman (Solomon), Zakariyah, Ya'hya (John), Al-Messieh Eissa Bin Maryam (The Messiah Jesus, Son of Mary), and Muhammed (Peace and blessings of Allah be upon all of them). 

 

God's messages to humanity, through His messengers, include His commands and His recommendations. While good is what Allah, praise to Him, has wanted humans to do, evil is what He warned them against, telling them to avoid or not to do (God's commands are the subject of Chapter IV.1, "Introduction to Islamic Law, Shari'a, Part I").

 

It follows that obedience to Allah, praise to Him, through doing what He wants people to do, constitutes what's good, and leads to happiness here in their first life on Earth and in the hereafter. However, disobedience to Him leads to committing evil acts, which cause suffering to offenders and to their victims in this life, as well as punishment for the evil doers in the hereafter.

 

***

 

More direct association between obedience to Allah, praise to Him, and happiness as well as disobedience to Him and unhappiness or wretchedness can be found in many verses throughout the Holy Quran.

 

Disobedience to God as associated with punishment and suffering of offenders is mentioned about 32 times in the Holy Quran, while obedience to Him as associated with winning () has been mentioned about 29 times. [4] Here are some examples from Verses 33: 36, 4; 14, 33: 71, and 24: 52 of the Holy Quran.

 

ۡ۬ ۡ ٱ  ۥۤ ۡ ٱۡ ۡ ۡۡۗ ۡ ٱ  ۥ ۡ ٰ۬ ۬  ( 33: 36). 

 

It is not fitting for a Believer, man or woman, when a matter has been decided by Allah and His Messenger, to have any option about their decision. If anyone disobeys Allah and His Messenger he is indeed clearly lost (Al-A'hzab, 33: 36).

 

ۡ ٱ  ۥ  ۥ ۡۡ ٰ۬  ۥ ۬ ۬  ( 4: 14).

 

 

And whoever disobeys Allah and His Messenger and transgresses His limits will be admitted to a Fire, everlasting therein, and he will have a humiliating punishment (Al-Nissa 4: 14).

ٱ  ۥ ۡ ۡ ( 33: 71). 

 

... and whoever obeys Allah and His Messenger, he/she has already won the greatest winning (Al-A'hzab, 33: 71).  

 

ٱ  ۥ ۡ ٱ ۡ ٰٓٮٕ ٱۡٓٮٕ  ( 24: 52).

 

And whoever obeys Allah and His Messenger and fear Allah and avoids His wrath, these are the winners (in the end)" (Al-Room, 24: 52). 

 

 

The Mind

 

The mind is the body of knowledge housed in the brain. It includes two main parts. The first part is a soft-ware which develops inherently with the brain. It is responsible for the functionality of the body and the readiness of the living being for learning, This is the original divine software of life, which Allah, praise to Him, has installed in all living beings by blowing part of His Spirit in them, giving them life, as stated in Verses 21: 30 and 67: 2 of the Holy Quran. 

 

 ۖ  ۖ  ( 21: 30).

 

Have those who disbelieved not considered that the heavens and the earth were a joined entity, and We separated them and made from water every living thing? Then will they not believe? (Al-Anbiya, 21: 30).  

 ۚ   ( 67: 2).  

 

[He] who created death and life to test you [as to] which of you is best in deed - and He is the Exalted in Might, the Forgiving (Al-Mulk, 67: 2).  

 

However, Allah, praise to Him, distinguished humans with an extra element of His Spirit, which is the disposition for knowing good and evil and the ability to choose between them, as stated in Verses 32: 9, 15: 29, 90: 10, and 91: 7-8 of the Holy Quran.

 

ٮٰ ۦۖ   ( 32: 9).

 

Then He fashioned him (in due proportions), and blew into him of His Spirit (Al-Sajda, 32: 9).  

ۡ ۥ ۡ  ۥ ٰ  ( 15: 29). 

 

When I have fashioned him (in due proportions) and blown into him of My Spirit, fall you down to him prostrating (Al-'Hijr, 15: 29).

 

  ( 90: 10).

 

And have shown him the two paths (good and evil to choose)? (Al-Balad, 90: 10).

 

﴿٧﴾ ﴿٨  ( 91: 7-8).

 

And (by) the nafs (soul) and He who proportioned it (7) And inspired it (to know or discern) its wickedness and its righteousness, (8) (Al-Shams, 91: 7-8). 

 

***

 

The second part of the mind containes the accumulated knowledge from birth to death, as a result of the interaction with the world. So, the human mind actually contains everything a person learns throughout his/her life. However, not all the information accumulated in the mind may be used by a  person.

 

The word mind (aql, ) does not appear in the Holy Quran as a noun in the singular form. Rather, a derivative of it is used as a verb (aqala ), meaning to tie, tighten, control, or restrict. The verb form appears about 49 times in the Holy Quran, and the vast majority of it is in the questioning present plural form, wondering about non-believers: Dont they  reason?  ( ). Thus, minding or reasoning means subjecting ones thinking to known restrictions, rules, laws, and controls in order for ones behavior to become as educated, safe, wise, and intelligent as possible, as mentioned in many verses of the Holy Quran, such 36: 68, 2: 44, 39: 43, 2: 75, and 67: 10.

 

 ۖ   ( 36: 68).   

 

And he to whom We grant long life We reverse in creation; so will they not reason (understand)? (Ya-Seen, 36: 68).  

 

ۡ ٱ ٱۡ ۡ ۡ ۡ ۡ ٱٰۡۚ ۡ   ( 2: 44).

 

Do you enjoin right conduct on the people and forget (to practice it) yourselves, and (yet) you recite the Scripture? Do you not reason?" (Al-Baqara, 2: 44). 

 

ٱ ٱ ٓۚ ۡ ۡ ڪ ۡ ۡٔ۬ ۡ  ( 39: 43).

 

 

Did they take other intercessors than Allah? Say: "Even if they have nothing and have no reasoning?" (Al-Zumar, 39: 43).

 

ۡ ۡ ۡ ۡ ۬ ۡۡ ۡ ڪٰ ٱ  ۥ ۢ ۡ ۡ ۡ  ( 2: 75).

 

 

Do you (people of Faith) hope that they will believe in you, while a party of them used to hear the Words of Allah (the Torah) then they would distort them knowingly, after they reasoned (understood) them" (Al-Baqara, 2: 75). 

 

ۡ ۡ ۡ ۡ ٓ ٰۡ ٱ  ( 67: 10).

 

They will further say: "Had we listened or reasoned, we should not have been among the companions of the Blazing Fire! (Al-Mulk, 67: 10).

 

The word al-albab   ,()however, is used in the Holy Quran to refer to the mind but in the plural form. It is mentioned in 15 verses, all addressing believers who are intelligent enough to use their minds.  Here are three examples from verses 2: 197, 2: 269, and 3: 190. 

 

ٱ ٰٓ ٱٰۡۡ  ( 2: 197). 

 

O you who have (reasoning) minds, avoid my anger (or my punishment)" (Al-Baqara, 2: 197).

 

ڪ ٓ ٱٰۡۡ  ( 2: 269).

 

Only those with (reasoning) minds will remember (and understand God's message)" (Al-Baqara, 2: 269). 

 

 

ۡ ٱٰٲ ٱۡۡ ٱٰۡ ٱۡ ٱ ٰ۬ ٱٰۡۡ  ( 3: 190).

 

 

 In the creation of the heavens and the Earth, and the alternation of night and day, there are signs for those with (reasoning) minds" (Al-Imran, 3: 190). 

 

 

Self and Soul

 

In Surat Al-Anam (Chapter 6), Verses 60-61, of the Holy Quran, we are told that Allah, praise to Him, knows what we do in the daytime as well as when we are awake. Then, after death, we go back to Him in the Day of Judgment, so He tells us what we have done in this life. Moreover, these verses clarifiy the difference between the two concepts of wafah (completion of records on Earth) and mowt (physical death of the human body), the two states in which the human soul is taken over by God and His angel messengers.

 

Thus, Allah, praise to Him, is telling us that when the moment of death comes, He sends His angels who are curators or record keepers to end a persons life on Earth. Nothing will be left out of his/her record. Thus, the "mowt" or the "physical death" is also accompanied by wafah or completion of a persons record during his/her life time on Earth.

 

 

ٰ  ۖ ﴿٦٠

 

 ۖ ٰ ﴿٦١( 6: 60-61).

 

 

And it is He who takes your souls by night and knows what you have committed by day. Then He revives you therein that a specified term may be fulfilled. Then to Him will be your return; then He will inform you about what you used to do. (60)

 

And He is the subjugator over His servants, and He sends over you guardian-angels until, when death comes to one of you, Our messengers take him, and they do not fail [in their duties]. (61) (Al-Ana'am, 6: 60-61). 

 

The closest translation of the Arabic verb "tawafa" () is "he had his record completed." The two verses mentioned above (6: 60-61) refer to two situations in which a person's records are completed and taken by angels. The first is during his/her sleep but the record will be reopened when a person wakes up. The second is a final completion of a person's record on Earth, when he/she dies.

 

Some Messengers of Allah, however, were lifted alive to heavens to save them from the physical death of the body but their records on Earth were completed, such as the case of Jesus Christ, peace be upon him, who had "wafah" (completion of his record on Earth) but not mowt (physical death of the human body), as stated in 3: 55. This is also the case of Irdrees (Anokh), peace be upon him, and the case of martyrs, whose life on Earth end but they are alive in heavens, as stated in Verses 3: 55, 19: 56-57, and 3: 169.

 

   ٰ ٰ ۖ   ( 3: 55).

 

(Mention) when Allah said, "O 'Eissa (Jesus), I am taking over your soul (completing your record on Earth), lifting you to Me, purifying you from those who disbelieved, and making those who followed you (dominant) over those who disbelieved until the Day of Resurrection." Then (addressing people), to Me is your return, and I will judge between you concerning that in which you used to differ" (Al-'Imran, 3: 55).

 

Verse 4: 157 states that 'Eissa, peace be to him, was not killed, thus confirming that what happened to him was wafah (completion of record), not mowt (death).

 

ٰ  ۚ  ۚ  ۚ   ( 4: 157).

 

And for saying: "We killed the Christ, Jesus, son of Mary, who was an apostle of God;" but they neither killed nor crucified him, though it so appeared to them. Those who disagree in the matter are only lost in doubt. They have no knowledge about it other than conjecture, for surely they did not kill him (Al-Nissa, 4: 157).

 

 ۚ ﴿٥٦﴾ ﴿٥٧﴾  ( 19: 56-57).

 

  And mention in the Book, Idrees. Indeed, he was a man of truth and a prophet. (56) And We lifted him to a high place. (57 (Maryam, 19: 56-57).  

 

ۚ  ( 3: 169).

 

And do not count those who have been killed in the cause of Allah (martyrs) as dead. Rather, they are alive near their Lord, receiving provision (Al-'Imran, 3: 169).

 

***

 

Verse 67 of Chapter 6 of the Holy Quran assures us that every bit of news has a destination where it can be saved or recorded, and prophetically tells us that we will know that this can and will happen.  

۬ ۡ۬ۚ ۡ ۡ  ( 6: 67). 

 

For every bit of news (information), there is a destination (to be saved in), and you will know it (Al-Ana'am, 6: 67).

 

Part of this prophecy has been fulfilled in our time, as we have been capable of capturing the sound and pictures of humans and their environment and of broadcasting them through radio and TV waves throughout terrestrial and extraterrestrial space.

 

The main idea here is that if humans have been capable of accomplishing that, then it should be a given that Allah Almighty, praise to Him, is more capable of doing it and more.

But what exactly are we going to be held accountable for?

 

The Holy Quran tells us that we will be held accountable for all of what we say and do with our own free will and choice. This is because God has given humans the freedom to choose. Humans are created with an inherent ability to differentiate between good and evil deeds. And whatever they do or say after that is a matter of choice. As a result, they will be held accountable for the decisions they make. This meaning is expressed in Verse 90: 10, which states: 

 

 ٰۡ ٱۡۡ ( 90: 10).

 

And We guided him (the human being to be able to decide between) the two paths (of good and evil)?" (Al-Balad, 90: 10).

 

The Holy Quran is very specific about the contrast between the two choices. In Verses 91: 7-8, Allah, praise to Him, says that when He has fashioned the human self (by blowing His Spirit in it), He has equipped it with the ability to choose to be pious or deviant, following the straight path or going astray from it.  

 

 ۡ۬ ٮٰ (٧)

 

  ۡ ۡٮٰ ( 91: 7-8).

By the self (soul), and how He has fashioned it;

 

 And how He inspired it with (the choice between) its deviance and its piety  (Al-Shams, 91: 7-8). 

 

Translators of the Holy Quran generally use the word soul as a translation for the Arabic word nafs (ۡ۬). Sociologists use another term, self, to refer to the body of knowledge, which is selected from the mind in a developmental process to form a unique identity for a living person.

 

The word soul is more used by religious scholars to refer to a persons unique identity after death, than during his/her life on earth. Thus, the soul is the self after death, which will be held accountable for its performance during its life on Earth. It will be transferred back to its resurrected body on the Last Day, in order to be able to communicate with its Creator, during the reckoning, then to be rewarded or punished on the basis of its first life performance on Earth.


The return of the nafs (soul) to its body is mentioned in Verse 81: 7 of the Holy Quran, and described as pairing it to or marrying it with its body, which it had during its first life on Earth.

  ( 81: 7). 

And when the nufous (souls) are paired (married with the bodies) (Al-Takweer, 81: 7).

 

 

There are hundreds of verses in the Holy Quran, which mention the human self (nafs in Arabic and soul in English). Some of them refer to the self during its life on Earth and others refer to it in the Hereafter, as stated in Verses 86: 4, 2: 286, 74: 38, and 81: 14. 

 

  ( 86: 4).

 

There is no self (soul) but has a record keeper over it (Al-Tariq, 86: 4). 

 

ٱ ۡ ۡǝۚ  ( 2: 286).

 

Allah does not place a burden on a self (soul) greater than it can bear (Al-Baqara, 2: 286). 

 

ۭۡ ۡ  ( 74: 38).

 

Every self (soul) will be hostage to what it has earned (Al-Muddathir, 74: 38).

 

 

ۡ ۡ۬ ٓ ۡۡ  ( 81: 14).

 

A self (soul) will know what it has brought (Al-Takweer, 81: 14).

 

 

The Spirit

 

While psychologists, sociologists, and other scientists have been studying the mind and the "self" (which is referred to as the "soul" after death), we know very little about the Spirit, as the Holy Quran tells us in Verse 17: 85.

 

ۡٔ ٱۖ ٱ ۡ ۡ ٓ ٱۡۡ ۬  ( 17: 85).


They ask you about the Spirit. Say: "The Spirit is an issue of my Lord, and the knowledge you have been given is only a little (Al-Issra, 17: 85).  

 

The word spirit is a translation of the Arabic word roo'h (), which is mentioned in about 21 verses in the Holy Quran.  Humans received part of Gods spirit when He blew it in Adam, thus becoming part of the human DNA, as Verse 15: 29 tells us. This is the part of the brain which is responsible for the automatic functionality of the body organs, readiness for learning, and disposition for knowing good and evil.

Moreover, we know from such Verses as 4: 172, 16: 102, and 26: 193 that the Spirit is a quality of God that He sends to the humans He has created in order to give them life, support, and strength. Thus, humans have some of Gods Spirit. The verses also refer to the angel Jibril (Gabriel), peace be to him, as "the Spirit."
 

 

ۡ ۥ ۡ  ۥ ٰ  ( 15: 29).

 

When I have fashioned him (in due proportions) and blown into him of My Spirit, fall you down to him prostrating (Al-'Hijr, 15: 29). 

 

 

ٱۡ ٱۡ ۡ ٱ ڪ ۥۤ ۡٮٰٓ ٰ ۡ ۬ ۡۖ   ( 4: 172).

 

 

The Messiah, 'Eissa Bin Maryam (Jesus, the Son of Mary) was a Messenger of Allah and His Word, which He threw to Maryam (Mary), and a spirit from Him (Al-Nissa, 4: 172). 

 

 

ۡ  ۥ ٱۡ ٱۡ  ( 16: 102).

 

Say the Spirit of the Holy has brought it (the revelation) down from your Lord in truth (Al-Na'hl, 16: 102). 

 

ٱ ٱۡ  ( 26: 193).

 

The trusted Spirit came down with it (Al-Shu'ara, 26: 193).

 

 

Summary and Conclusion

 

The concepts of mind, self, soul, Spirit, and happiness are closely related in the Holy Quran. They are interconnected, in the sense that understanding them individually cannot be complete without understanding how they are related to each other.

 

As human beings, we are elated over a lot of Gods creations because of our ability to collect, process, and use data in a good way, by choice.

 

The human body is just an instrument that incubates and sustains the brain, which houses the human mind, from which the self develops and evolves throughout a person's lifetime on Earth.

 

Allah, praise to Him, started the process when He installed an essential software from His Spirit into the human DNA. This is what allows and enables the human self to start a life-long process of data collection, processing, and decision making while having the ability to differentiate between good and evil.

 

The body dies when it is no longer capable of sustaining the self, whether by old age, sickness, or accidental injury. Then, records of the human nafs (self or soul) are completed (ended) by angels.

 

In the Hereafter, the nafs (self or soul) is going to be judged on the basis of its performance during its first life on Earth. If it is obedient to God in its behavior, it will be living in happiness in this life and in the hereafter. But, if the human self is disobedient to its Creator, it suffers in this life and in the hereafter.

 

Thus, goodness is obedience to God and evil is disobedience to Him.

 

It follows that whatever happens to human beings in their life is going to be good for them in the hereafter, as long as they are obedient to Allah, praise to Him, even if they become poor, get sickor killed unjustly. It is good because their ultimate destination is an eternal happy life in Paradise. They have to work as hard as they can in their pursuit of happiness during their first life on Earth but they have to observe God in everything they say or do.

 

You may get some or all of the results you want to achieve here in this life (wealth, power, prestige, reproductive activities, offspring, etc.) but there's a possibility that you may not get what you are pursuing because of circumstances beyond your control.

 

Success or failure, in the Islamic sense, is not necessarily in the achievement or the lack there of. Rather, it is in how you conduct yourself during the process of pursuing your goals, wants, and desires.

 

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Notes:

 

Though the author is solely responsible for the translation of the meanings of the verses of the the Holy Quran mentioned throughout the book, including in this Chapter, he consulted with other translations, particularly those of Saheeh International and of Yusuf Ali, may Allah reward them for their great works in the service of Islam and Muslims.

[2]  In Ibn Katheer's interpretation of of this verse, he said that the self (nafs) is part of the Spirit, as this author also argues above.

 

85 (3) :

 

" "

 

 

[3]  For more information about the Day of Reckoning and Day of Judgment, see Chapter III.9, "The Last Day, The Hour, Resurrection, Reckoning, and Judgment."

 

[4]  The mentioned numbers of verses containing specific words are based on the search function of the Holy Quran in Arabic, at www.tanzil.net.

 

The other source the author used for this purpose was "The Holy Quran Index," in Arabic, by Muhammed Fuad Abdul Baqi. Cairo: Dar Al-Fikr. 1406 (1986). The Arabic Title is: Al-Muajam Al-Mufahras Li Alfadh Al-Quran Al-Kareem.

 

 

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About the Author and the Book:

 

* The author of this book has a Ph.D. in Sociology and a Masters degree in Cultural Anthropology. He was born in Gaza, Palestine in 1369 Hijriya (1950) but he has been living in the United States since 1986.
 

This work is solely devoted for the sake of Allah, to educate people about Islam, in response to a great demand to know about the final message of God to humanity.
 
The authentic Quran Arabic text is used as a reference for the translation of the meanings of the Quran verses, particularly from www.tanzil.net
.

 

The works of the three renowned Islamic scholars Al-Tabari, Al-Qurtubi, and Ibn Katheer, have been used throughout the chapters of this book, as these are the most credited interpretations of the Holy Quran, for their use of 'Hadith, companions' interpretations, and their thorough knowledge of the Arabic language.

May Allah, praise to Him, enlighten the hearts and minds of all who read this book, and guide them to the right path.
 
May Allah, praise to Him, accept this effort, as a contribution to spreading His light among the people of this Earth.

 

  ( 61: 8).  

 

 

They want to extinguish the light of Allah with their mouths, but Allah will perfect His light, although the disbelievers dislike it (Al-Saff, 61: 8).

 

 

Opinions expressed in various sections are the sole responsibility of their authors and they may not represent Al-Jazeerah's.

editor@aljazeerah.info