(Motivation) For the Pursuit of Excellence

Spiritual Void

A talk transcript by Nouman Ali Khan

Al – Baqarah (2: 44-45)

I like to share with you yet another reminder, this one perticularly to those of you that are involved in any sort of Islamic activity – You are volunteering at a sunday school or a islamic school, your helping out at the MSA, you are working at a youth group, your helping put  a conference together, bringing educational programs to your community. Your trying to put together a soup kitchen or a humanitarian cause, putting up a halaqa for the youth. etc. etc. etc. there are so many activites that many of you are involved in and you are doing it for the sake of Islam, it also includes learning the deen and attending courses and things like that, but we are learning all the stuff and a lot of times you know what happens and i speak this from personal experience, a lot of times what happens is we get caught up with these activities and there is a deepening, widening and gaeping spiritual hole inside of us, we are doing all this stuff but our prayers have become empty, you dont enjoy reciting Quran and your downtime and your like addicted to entatainment and you cant help it but watch movie after movie or you know watch video after video and you tube like ya’ watching now lol!! or you know stuff to entertain yourself or you know video game after video game and your just cant help yourself and your caught up in this cycle where every time your by yourself your just doing this stuff that you hate yourself for and you know you should be doing something better with your time you just cant get yourself to do it. you try to just pick up the Quran and recite it, you just dont do it. your so busy volunteering and  your tired up in all this stuff that even the most amazing course that your been in all of them but you havent listened to anything, because your helping out, and may Allah reward you for helping out, but you have other needs also, there is this spiritual hole that needs to be fulfilled.

so there are two kinds of services in this deen:

(1) There are services you provide for others, you know for the sake of Allah. You serve the community, you serve a good cause then

(2) There are things in this deen you do to make youself a better person

and you have to have a balance between both of these things.

The Ayat I recited to you was a  complain Allah made to the children of israel. He says: ‘Do  you order righteousness of the people and forget yourselves while you recite the scripture? Have you no sense?”-Al Baqarah, 44. In other words Clearly, the person who runs the halaqas, the ones whos knowledgeble, the ones who does the activities are more knowledgeble, they are the ones who tell other people to do good, what about You, what about you when your by yourself, you forget so easily, why didnt you get it. why didnt you understand.

So then Allah gives a Remedy, If thats your problem, If in  your public life you become very active not to show off sincerily active even, but in your private life you have been devoid of spirituality and ‘khushoo’ in your prayer then what should you do?

“Seek help throught patience and prayer, and indeed, it is difficult except for the humbly submissive (to Allah)” Al- Buqari-45

Seek Help from Percivearence and Patience, be tough to yourself, Percivearence part of the meaning really is being tough with yourself, Get yourself up and pray, force yourself, just turn that thing off and go recite some Quran or memorize some ayaat or do some Ibaada or make some dua, memorize a new dua or two, force yourself to do this, sabr, and then He says Seek Help with prayer, The prayer is suppose to help you get out of this problem. You see, when Allah says ‘SEEK HELP’ there is a problem to which you seek help, the problem was in the previous ayaat, you tell people to do good- you forget about yourself and Allah says to help you out of this problem, you turn to prayer, you turn to the Salah.

Now, Specially to the brothers I want to give some very practicle advise, There are many Spiritual excercises in the Sunnah of the Prophet (S.A.W.) Many many many Afkaar, many many many practicess of higher and higher and higher levels, you know fasting every monday and thursday, tahajjud prayer, ishraak and all of these thing, but before you talk about any of that stuff, let me just give you a verrryy practicle advise, guys seriously, if you can make it to Fajr and Isha to Masjid and you can do so for a month, 2 months or 3 months regually, without missing a single one, you’ll addressed your spiritual problem for the most part. The way you feel after you come back from the masjid, after praying fajr, you’ll know that feeling, it cannot argue with you, it cannot give you evidences for it, you yourself will be the witness for it