The function of the Qalb is to a) receive & absorb the love that Allah feels towards us, b) Love Allah back & c) radiate Allah’s love to others. Since Allah is of Nur, His Orders, Attention, Affection are all Nur. The Spirits that lie within us are also Nur & can thus not only relate to Allah, but their food & energy too, is Nur.
The problem starts when our Qalb becomes dysfunctional! This happens due to repeated sins. Since every sin leaves a black mark on the Qalb, slowly the black marks envelope the Qalb & make it lose its capacity to illuminate & radiate, it becomes dull & loses its capacity to receive & absorb Allah’s Nur & thus it becomes diseased & cannot find the energy required for the Spirit to be healthy & functional.
Now the question arises that how are we to make our dysfunctional hearts functional again? How do we make our diseased Spirit healthy again?
Hadith: Al-Bayhaqee relates from Ibn 'Umar radiallaahu 'anhu that AlIah's Messenger sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam said: "For everything there is a polish, and the polish for the hearts is the Zikr (remembrance) of Allah. There is nothing more potent in saving a person from the punishment of Allah than the Zikr of Allah." It was said: Not even Jihad in the path of Allah. So he replied: "Not even if you were to continue striking with your sword until it breaks."
Vander Hoven, a psychologist from Netherlands, announced his new discovery about the effect of repeating the word ALLAH (the Arabic name for GOD) both on patients & on normal persons. The Dutch professor confirms his discovery with studies & research applied on many patients over a period of three years. His non Arabic speaking patients were trained to pronounce the word "ALLAH" clearly; the result was great, particularly on those who suffer from dejection & tension.
The psychologist explained how each letter in the word "ALLAH" affects healing of psychological diseases. He pointed out in his research that pronouncing the first letter in the word "ALLAH" which is the letter(A), released from the respiratory system, controls breathing. He added that pronouncing the velar consonant (L) in the Arabic way, with the tongue touching slightly the upper part of the jaw producing a short pause & then repeating the same pause constantly, relaxes the aspiration.
Also, pronouncing the last letter which is the letter (H) makes a contact between the lungs & the heart & in turn this contact controls the heartbeat.
It has also been scientifically proven that since ‘Allah’ is a two syllable word it can easily get synchronized with the breathing, & since human breath contains one long & one short breath … ‘Allah’ ‘Hoo’ these 2 words are used in order to be recited within the heart with each inhaling & exhaling breath. "Allah hoo" ... The actual term is "Allah howa" which means "Allah, HE is the one" (which would be the shortest form of saying the first half of the first Kalimah “There is no GOD, but ALLAH)! When "Allah huwa" has an ayat in front of it (the round thing used instead of a fullstop), it is pronounced as "Allah hoo" thus becoming a two syllabal word which can be easily synchronized with ones breathing.
SIGNIFICANCE OF ZIKR ALLAH: Sahih Muslim Hadith 7178; Narrated by Abdullah ibn Mas'ud: Since our acceptance of Islam and the revelation of this verse (57.16) in which Allah has shown annoyance to us, there was a gap of four years.
Surah Al-Hadid 57, Ruku 2, ayat 16:
“Has not the time arrived for the Believers that their hearts in all humility should engage in the remembrance of Allah and of the truth which has been revealed (to them) and that they should not become like those to whom was given Revelation aforetime but long ages passed over them and their hearts grew hard? For many among them are rebellious transgressors.
DOING ZIKR TWICE A DAY IN THE MORNING AND EVENING: Surah Al-Kahf Ruku 4, ayat 28
“And keep thy soul content with those who call on their Lord morning and evening seeking His Face; and let not thine eyes pass beyond them seeking the pomp and glitter of this Life; nor obey any whose heart We have permitted to neglect the remembrance of Us one who follows his own desires whose case has gone beyond all bounds.
ZIKR OF THE NAME OF ALLAH AND WITH COMPLETE CONCENTRATION: Surah Al-Muzzammil Ruku 1, ayat 8
“So remember the name of thy Lord and devote thyself with a complete devotion.”
ZIKR WITH ABUNDANCE: Surah Al-Ahzab Ruku 6, ayat 41
“O ye who believe! Remember Allah with much remembrance.”
ZIKR BELOW ONES BREATH & MORNING AND EVENING: Surah Al-A’raf Ruku 24. ayat 205
"And do bring your Lord to remembrance in your very soul, with humility and in reverence, without loudness in words, in the mornings and evening, and be not of those who are unheedful.''
ZIKR BY THE SKIN AND THE HEART: Surah Az-Zumar Ruku 3. Ayat 23
“Allah has revealed (from time to time) the most beautiful message in the form of a Book consistent with itself (Yet) repeating (its teaching in various aspects): the skins of those who fear their Lord tremble there at; then their skins and their hearts do soften to the celebration of Allah's praises. Such is the guidance of Allah: He guides therewith whom He pleases but such as Allah leaves to stray can have none to guide.”
ZIKR STANDING, SITTING AND RECLINING: Surah Al-e-Imran Ruku 19. ayat 191
“Men who celebrate the praises of Allah standing sitting and lying down on their sides and contemplate the (wonders of) creation in the heavens and the earth (with the thought): "Our Lord! not for naught hast thou created (all) this! Glory to thee! give us salvation from the penalty of the fire.”
ZIKR STANDING, SITTING AND RECLINING: Surah Nisa Ruku 15. Ayat 103
“When ye pass (congregational) prayers celebrate Allah's praises standing sitting down or lying down on your sides; but when ye are free from danger set up regular prayers: for such prayers are enjoined on believers at stated times.”
REWARD FOR THOSE WHO DO ZIKR WITH ABUNDANCE: Surah Al-Ahzab Ruku 5. Ayat 35
“For Muslim men and women for believing men and women for devout men and women for true men and women for men and women who are patient and constant for men and women who humble themselves for men and women who give in charity for men and women who fast (and deny themselves) for men and women who guard their chastity and for men and women who engage much in Allah's praise for them has Allah prepared forgiveness and great reward.
DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A ZAKIR AND NON-ZAKIR: Surah Az-Zumar Ruku 3, ayat 22
“Is he whose bosom Allah hath expanded for the Surrender (unto Him), so that he followeth a light from His Lord, (as he who disbelieveth)? Then woe unto those whose hearts are hardened against remembrance of Allah. Such are in plain error.”
In the Quran it is stated ...
(39:22) - Shall he then whose breast Allah-SWT has expanded for Islam, so that he follows a light from his Rabb-SWT be as he whose heart is hardened? Then woe to those whose hearts are hardened against Allah-SWT ’s Zikr. They are in error manifest.
(39:23) - Allah-SWT has revealed the most excellent discourse, a Book consimilar, off-repeated, at which trembles the skins of those who fear their Rabb-SWT ; then their skins and hearts soften to Allah-SWT ’s Zikr. This is Allah-SWT's guidance to which He-SWT guides whom He-SWT will; and whom Allah-SWT sends astray, for him there is no guide
and heart and breast are mentioned separately ... over and over again
also in the above mentioned verses Zikr is also clearly mentioned in regard to the expansion of breast and not just qalbi-zikr
then in the following ayat:
(16:106) - Whoever disbelieves in Allah-SWT after his belief-save him who is constrained and his heart is at rest with the belief-but whoever expands his breast to unbelief, upon them shall be wrath from Allah-SWT and to them shall be a torment mighty.
(16:107) - That is because they loved the life of the world above the Akhirah, and because Allah-SWT does not guide an infidel people.
(16:108) - These are they upon whose hearts and hearing and sight Allah-SWT has set a seal; and these! They are the heedless!
(16:109) - Undoubtedly in the Hereafter they shall be the very losers.
the mention of those who open their heart to disbelief or darkness too is mentioned ... and then further its mentioned regarding the qalbs ability of sight and hearing
this covers the matter regarding Kashf
further more in the below mentioned ayat
(20:25) - He said: Rabb-SWT ! Expand for me my breast
Prophet Musa-AS upon finding the portals of endowment ajar, tried to gather as much blessings as he could, and presented one request after the other before Allah-SWT .The very first thing he sought was Sharah-e-Sadar’ (Opening of the Bosom).
It refers to a state when knowledge descends directly from Allah-SWT unto the heart about topics or issues discussed, and the bosom becomes an ocean of knowledge. This knowledge indeed is termed as 'Ilm-e-Luduni (the inspired knowledge) which opens the bosom in which it is inspired. According to Quran when Allah-SWT showers His-SWT Mercy on someone. He-SWT opens his bosom for Islam. This is a blessing generally enjoyed by the Aulia’. However, some fortunate ones are especially gifted with such knowledge from Allah-SWT that they can converse at length on just about any topic, despite the fact that they never acquired any formal education thereof.
Prophet Musa-AS then presented his second request, which was to make his task easy as this indeed was the domain of Allah-SWT . No matter how perfect a person may be or how much authority he wields, whatever means he employs to achieve a particular result are made effective only by Allah-SWT .He also requested Allah-SWT to untie the knot of his tongue which means that not only should his bosom be overflowing with knowledge, but he should also be able to expound these facts before others.
qalb - heart
ruh - life / spirit
Sirri - literally means "the secret"
khafi - literally means " Hidden"
akhfa /ikhfa - literally means Most hidden
these being the five points of focus all lying within the breast, as can be clearly observed through Kashf and falls in coherence with the knowledge or information provided to us through the Quran and Hadith regarding the importance of Qalb and the opening of the beast for light and Islam.
There are five main points of focus of the spirit. The same way the human body has organs and body parts, similarly our spirit has some main points of focus, which lie within the parameters of our body. The Spirit too has a brain centre which is known as the Qalb and is placed in the exact same position as our physical heart. This is the most important part or point of focus of the Spirit and thus the main focus of meditation lies constantly at this point. The rest of the points are as follows:
SPIRITUAL POINTS OF FOCUS AND THEIR PLACEMENT:
SPIRITUAL POINTS OF FOCUS AND THEIR PLACEMENT:
1. Qalb – placed in the exact position of our physical heart. Approximately and inch below the left breast.
2. Ruh – placed directly opposite to the Qalb / heart on the right hand side. Approximately and inch below the right breast.
3. Siree – placed directly above the Qalb / heart. Approximately two inches above the left breast.
4. Khafee – placed directly above Ruh. Approximately two inches above the right breast
5. Ikhfa – placed right in the centre of the chest. Where the ribs join.
6. Nafs – (this is not an organ of the Spirit, but is placed with in our physical selves.) placed in the centre of our forehead.
7. Sultan ul-Azkar – (this too is not an organ of the Spirit, but is our physical selves) placed in our entire physical body from head to toe. Every inch, every pore of us.
DETAILED METHOD OF ZIKR ALLAH FOR BEGINNERS1. Sit in a comfortable relaxed position.
2. Close your eyes.
3. Recite the 3rd Kalima, Astaghfaar and then the 2nd kalmia.
4. Recite Tawuuz and Tasmia.
5. Concentrate on your breathing.
6. Inhale deeply and exhale with deliberate force.
7. When you inhale recite the word ‘Allah’ in your heart.
8. Visualize the word ‘Allah’, descending on you in the form of light and penetrating into your soul, going straight into your heart (Qalb).
9. When you exhale, recite the word ‘Hoo’ in your heart.
10. Visualize the light that seeped into your heart now coming out of your heart and flowing out with your breath, only to come back and strike at your heart again.
11. Repeat this exercise on all the other parts of the spirit in the following manner.
12. When you inhale recite the word ‘Allah’ in your heart.
13. Visualize the word ‘Allah’, descending on you in the form of light and penetrating into your soul, going straight into your heart (Qalb).
14. When you exhale, recite the word ‘Hoo’ in your heart.
15. Visualize the light that seeped into your heart now coming out of your heart and flowing out with your breath, but this time it should come back and strike at either one of the ‘Lataif’ or vital organs of the Spirit (in the order of succession); (Qalb being the brain centre and the first organ of the spirit) 2. (Ruh), 3. (Siree), 4. (Khafee), or 5. (Ikhfa) depending on which stage of zikr-Allah you are at.
16. Repeat the same procedure again for the next two (Nafs) and (Sultan ul-Azkar) these are placed within the body, and are not parts of the Spirit.
17. The only difference in the procedure of the sixth stage or (Nafs) is that; when you exhale, recite the word ‘Hoo’ in your heart. Visualize the light that seeped into your heart now coming out of your heart and flowing upwards and coming straight out of the centre of your forehead in the form of a flame, burning out the impurities of the evil part your mind or (Nafs).
18. The only difference in the procedure of the seventh stage or (Sultan ul-Azkar) is that; when you exhale, recite the word ‘Hoo’ in your heart. Visualize the light that seeped into your heart now coming out of your heart and flowing outward from every pore of your body, from your head to toe).
19. Finally come back to the first Latifa Qalb / heart and repeat the procedure for zikr-Allah on the first latifa.
20. Now you may stop the deliberate breathing, and come back to your natural pace.
21. Continue reciting ‘Allah’, and visualising its penetration into your heart, every time you inhale.
22. When you exhale recite ‘Hoo’, but this time when it flows out of your heart it should go straight up into the heavens and hit the ‘Sublime Throne of Allah’ (Arsh-e-Azeem) forming a constant connection between your heart and the 'Arsh-e-Azeem' (wherever that might be).
Note: spend at least a few minutes of focused zikr Allah on each Latifa for its individual cleansing. The longer you take on each latifa, the more purified it will get. And therefore the improvement in your character will be more efficient.
THE FUNCTION OF EACH POINT OF SPIRITUAL FOCUS.
There are five Exalted Messengers Hadhrat Muhammad-SAW, Hadhrat Abrahim-AS, Hadhrat Musa-AS, Hadhrat Noah-AS, and Hadhrat Eesa-AS, while Hadhrat Adam-AS is the first Prophet of Allah and the father of mankind.
1st Latifa = Qalb The first Latifa is connected to Hadhrat Adam-AS. The special quality which comes to the forefront in the nature of Hadhrat Adam-AS is that when he had fell victim to the mischief of Satan, he felt repentant and ashamed, and very humbly asked forgiveness from Allah. Thus, this is the quality of human beings which starts becoming prominent, that when he commits a mistake he should feel ashamed and ask for forgiveness. The quality of heartfelt repentance stems.
2nd Latifa = Ruh The second Latifa is connected to Hadhrat Noah-AS and Hadhrat Abraham-AS. The strongest quality of Hadhrat Noah-AS was his unwavering perseverance in preaching and Hadhrat Abraham-AS’s quality is his strength of faith, determination towards Islam and preaching which did not waver although opposed and harassed by his own family and relatives to the point of being thrown into the fire, for which he even severed ties with them. Thus similar qualities of perseverance, steadfastness and determination while inviting people towards Allah and while following Allah’s Commands is developed.
3rd Latifa = Sirree The third Latifa is connected to Hadhrat Musa-AS. The strength to stand up for the truth no matter what or who opposes you will stem. The ability to preach with patience, calmness and kindness is developed. Since Hadhrat Musa-AS also stood against all the black magic and voodoo that was rampant during his time, the ability to fight the negative forces and become spiritually strong against them appears.
4th Latifa = Khafee The fourth Latifa is connected to Hadhrat Eesa-AS. As this latifa gets purified you become indifferent to and unaffected by the negative or positive opinion or comments about you. None of the negative things people say about you can stand in the way of the good that you are doing and nor can they pull you down or make you feel bad. Similarly when people praise you and say good stuff about you it does not affect you in a way that you may start thinking something of yourself and become arrogant in your nature. Spiritual diseases such as arrogance and bottling grudges, is cured. The virtue of humility grows. You become more and more humble and humane.
5th Latifa = Ikhfa The fifth Latifa is connected to the Holy Prophet-SAW. With the purification of this latifa, the love for humanity develops. The need to help others and spread love and peace becomes intense. You become more and more balanced and develop spiritual wisdom. The Islamic law and the ‘Hikmah’ behind Allah’s words and circumstances that occur in your life start becoming much clearer. Thus you begin achieving the state of Razi-ba-Raza “Happy with whatever Allah ordains for you!”
6th Latifa = Nafs & 7th Latifa = Sultan-ul-Azkar As the Nafs gets purified, it becomes easier to avoid sin and do good deeds. And as each cell of the body gets purified, it gets tougher and tougher to disobey Allah, since the hands refuse to indulge in a sinful act and the feet refuse to take you towards evil. As the intensity of purification grows, so does the ability to avoid sin and aptitude to follow Allah’s Commands.