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Teachings of Imam Mehdi


How to Tackle the Attacks of the Nafs (Self) and Devil

Friday, July 23, 2010

"I am under attack by my Nafs. How do I overcome this attack?"

In order to fight our Nafs (the Self) and the devil, we need to understand the nature of the attacks carried out by Nafs and the devil. If we do not know how our Nafs attacks on us, and how the devil attacks on us, we will never be able to combat it.

Emotions and Love and Hatred

Every organ in our body has a specified task/nature. For example, the eyes are assigned to allow us to see, the nose to smell, and legs to walk with. These actions are those which can be felt, and these actions and activities are visible. However, the emotions and feelings cannot be seen, they are only felt. Emotions are both positive and negative, such as happiness and sadness, and love and hatred. We cannot see sorrow, but we can be engulfed by sorrow; sorrow strangles us. Sorrow captivates our body and our heart. Happiness makes us forgetful about all else. Love is of many types: sensual love, romantic love and divine love. Hatred itself is not a negative emotion, initially it was created as a preventive emotion. However later on, it was used in a negative sense against people. Hatred itself is not bad. For example, if you hate killing, is it bad? If you hate sins, is it bad? So it is a preventive emotion. If hating was bad, God would've never have asked his faithful believers to love people for his sake and to hate people for his sake. You see, hatred is also a side effect. If you love somebody, and people give him hard time, you begin to hate them. Hatred is a side effect of love; a preventive emotion. Nevertheless there are types of hatred. There is good hatred and bad hatred. Similarly, there is good love and bad love. Some people love killing. Is it good love? Some people love sinning. Is it good love? No.

If you go to the Unseen World and you enter the treasure of Goharian Knowledge, you will come up with the meaning of these two words as follows: Hatred: A repelling emotion; Love: An attracting emotion.

Hatred repels, while Love attracts. You can repel both bad things and good things. Similarly, you can attract both good things and bad things. The outcome is dependant on the source. Sensual love is prohibited, as it is a form of attraction between two Nafoos (Selves). Romantic love is a form of attraction between two souls who have been lovers and beloved to each other in the premordial times. Finally, divine love is a form of attraction between man and God. If you know how to love, you automatically know how to hate. If you know how to eat, you must know how to excrete your body's wastes. When you love somebody, you always have this tendency to hate those who give a hard time to your beloved. Love and hate go hand in hand. If you are good, anticipate people to be jealous of you. If you do not want people to be jealous of you, stop being good.

All in all, it is about the usage of ones feelings and emotions, the point of view. What may be boring to someone, maybe exciting to another. What may be a cup of tea for somebody, may be another's poison. This is what we need to understand today.

Sadness Relates to the Nafs

Why do we get sad? What is it because of which we are sad? What is the analogy of happiness? What organ in particular, inside our body, makes us feel happy? Is it our soul, our heart, our mouth - what is it?  For example, one's mouth is used to eat and drink substances. My friends, the enjoyment of the heart lies in remembrance of the Lord. Hence, happiness and sorrow have nothing to do with the heart. The heart is neither sad nor is it happy. Contentment of the heart, satisfaction of the heart, and enjoyment of the heart lies in the remembrance of the Lord. Happiness and sadness have nothing to do with the heart. Either the heart is content or it is uneasy. It is neither sad nor is it happy. So, what is responsible for sadness and happiness? Sadness and happiness are related to the Nafs. There is both good sadness and bad sadness. When our Nafs is humiliated, it makes us feel that we have been humiliated. When Nafs is sad, people say "We are sad." This is not true! Do not say that somebody is sad. Rather, tell them, "Your Nafs is sad today." You are happy because your Nafs is happy. The enjoyment of the soul is not in rememberance of God, not in servitude to God, but the soul's enjoyment lies in seeing God. Nothing else will quench it's thirst. For a beloved or lover, the happiness always lies in seeing them. Whenever they see the beloved, they feel content and satisfied. When you see somebody you love, you feel very safe, content, and satisfied.

Why is the Nafs sad? Nafs is sad when it does not obtain its regular diet. When Nafs is not given what it wants, Nafs  is sad. When the Nafs is happy, the only solution to bring it back to normal is to attack it with fear. Nafs is sad when you do not please it, and Nafs is happy when you please it. These feelings and emotions of sadness and happiness have nothing to do with your heart or the faith in your heart. However, they can still cause harm to your faith. My friends, if you please your Nafs, it will get strong. The stronger your Nafs is, the more distant from God you are.

You have to compromise with your Nafs. You have to say, "Okay, I can do this for you, but I cannot do this for you." What belongs to the heart is not happiness. It is satisfaction, the spiritual content!

 

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