The fasts of Ramadhan undoubtedly have many physical benefits. However, the main benefit, which is less spoken of, are the number of spiritual benefits it has on our soul. Our bodies are created from two components.
1.Our physical existence which we refer to as the “body”
2.Our internal driving instinct which we refer to as the “soul” or “spirit”
The soul is intangible and difficult to measure, but it is an absolute reality that, when it is there we are alive and aware, without it we are asleep or deceased.
The soul is a feature which has always amazed mankind. A code which can’t be cracked. What is it made from? Where does it exist from? How are we linked with it? Etc…
This same curiosity drove the pagans of Arabia to question the Messenger of Allah about its reality.
Allah almighty responded
and they ask you about the soul. Say it is from the command of my lord, and you have been given very less from knowledge (Quran 17:85)
This description, although it may not be for what the question was originally posed for, gave us a realisation that the Soul is a manifestation of the command of Allah within our bodies. The nature of our physical existence can be sometimes so mechanic that we may falsely assume it is existent by itself. The reproduction cycle of our species may result in us understanding nature completely differently. However the soul reminds us that we require Allah’s command continuously in order for us to live and without it, we will seize to belong.
Sustaining the Soul
Just like we require food and water to sustain our physical body, our souls also require sustenance. The body is created from the Earth and is sustained by products of this Earth. The soul however originates from the command of Allah, therefore the only way to sustain it is to feed it with the remembrance of Allah. The more we remember Allah the more the soul awakes.
The Messenger of Allah once said
The example of the one who remembers his lord and the one who doesn’t is like the living and the dead (Bukhari)
Ramadhan A month for the soul
Allah has kindly blessed us with the Month of Ramadhan. In this month we are taught to control our physical sustenance by fasting and to increase our spiritual strength by remembering Allah. Eleven months we starve our souls from its rightful provisions. Continuous negligence of our creator makes us susceptible to sin. The soul becomes so frail and weak that we lose focus on the purpose of our lives. Ramadhan gives us an opportunity to power the soul. The ability to do good and avoiding evil becomes a lot easier. This ability is what the Quran refers to as TAQWA.
Oh believers fasting has been ordained upon you like it was on those before you so you can attain TAQWA (Quran 2:183)
By Mawlana Thaqib Mahmood