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Steps of Spiritual Journey



According to Hadith,in which one Imam(as) said about rooh that its centre is brain.would that means aql or intellect in which a person is taught a right path by logic.and this nafs also takes guidance from it?

Is this sequence of getting knowledge for getting marifat of God right?

1)intellect use

2)fitrat and marifat e nafs and comparison between the two.

3)Adal (nafs,rooh and body must be placed at their exact places)

4) Quran understanding(as its the guidance for intellectuals)

5)tazkia e nafs including riazat and moving from ahwal to malika.

6)jihad e akbar(everytime)

These are the subjects containg vast knowledge.Plz guide me the missing main topics. Thanks.


Alaykum Salaam.

Thank you for your question.

The intellect is a translation for the Arabic
word ‘aql and it has a different meaning to rationality. Whilst
rationality is certainly a level of the intellect the definition of the
intellect is given by Imam al-Sadiq (as) when he says: “The aql is that
which the All-Merciful is worshipped and heaven is attained.” In the same
hadith in al-Kafi the Imam (as) explains the difference between the aql
and the cunningness that Mu’awiya had. So the comprehension attained by
this divine aql is different to the rational calculation of the dry mind.
It is a more holistic kind of comprehension which affects the depths of
the human. That is why a person may learn all of the rational arguments
for the existence of Allah and at the same time may not believe. But for
one who has truly comprehended the issue with the aql his nature will push
him towards Allah. So the hadith is not pointing to the guidance by the
rational faculty alone as the meaning of aql is different in the hadith to
the meaning of rationality as commonly used. Rather it is pointing to the
aql as defined by Imam al-Sadiq (as) above.

The sequence for ma’rifat Allah is different for each person but the start
of all ma’rifa is the fitra (natural disposition) of the human. It is then
a a journey of knowledge and action. That knowledge may be from the
sources of Islamic knowledge like the Qur’an and ahadith or it may also be
with the help of rational arguments and the rational sciences. That
knowledge must be backed up with action on what one knows in accordance
with the divine law and this is self purification. So it is not sequential
but it is like a spiral as knowledge and action are like two wings by
which a person flys to Allah. Both wings must beat otherwise there is no
meaningful movement. Knowledge of Allah is a journey, not a destination.

Zoheir Ali Ismail