By Umm Ayman
Complete health should be a balanced and holistic endeavour. Below are just a few concise steps toward achieving full physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, social and even financial well-being and contentment, Inshaa-Allah.
- ALWAYS SAY BISMILLAH (I BEGIN IN THE NAME OF ALLAH)
The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) taught us:
‘Every deed that does not begin with BISMILLAH – In the name of Allah, is incomplete, (devoid of blessings)’.
Hence, with yaqeen (conviction), whatever you decide to do or consume, will be blessed, and no harm will come to you if it is not Allah’s decree. Yet to aid in this conviction you must most certainly make use of your ‘aql (intelligence) and use what has been prescribed.
- MAKE GOOD INFORMED CHOICES.
That’s right. Ask the well-informed and experienced, read a book, do research etc. Keep an open mind, cross reference and always, always verify – until you are satisfied that you have done your best. The rest is in Allah’s hands.Thus does Allah (SWT) advise us;
‘Then ask those who do know; if you, indeed, do not.’ (Qur’an Surah An-Nahl, Verse 43)
- EAT WHOLESOME FOODS.
Drink more water and eat more fruits and vegetables. Avoid grease, salt and sugars. Consume less refined, mass produced hazards and opt more for fresh, natural homemade goodness. Eat moderately. Read the labels. Know what’s going into your body. Above all, enjoy what Allah has bestowed on you.
‘Eat of the wholesome foods we have provided you and give thanks to Allah.’ (Qur’an :Surah Al Baqara, Verse 172)
- EXERCISE YOUR MIND.
Don’t get stuck in a rut, don’t be idle, and don’t overload your brain with irrelevant nonsense. Don’t become complacent and satisfied that you know enough. The brain, like any muscle, atrophies with disuse. So utilize that grey matter. Learn something new. Challenge yourself. Besides, it’s quite true: an idle mind is the devil’s workshop.
The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) instructs us: ‘Seeking knowledge is an obligation upon every male and female Muslim’ (Hadith Ibn Majah & Bayhaqi)
And in quite a few instances in the Holy Quran, Allah (SWT) admonishes us: ‘Why then do you not make use of your intellect?’ (Qur’an -Surah Al-Anbiya, Verse 67)
- 5. GET SOME SUNSHINE AND FRESH AIR.
Breathe deeply and get some exercise. Appreciate Allah’s creation. Simultaneously revel in the miracle that is your own body, as well as the majesty of nature, by getting out there and getting a move on it! Physical exercise is an essential part of achieving good health.
Our esteemed Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) has admonished:
‘Your body has a right over you.’ (Hadith-Bukhari)
- FIND COMFORT AND PLEASURE IN WORSHIP.
Increase such deeds that bring you closer to Allah and those actions too that declare your love for The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him).Says Allah (SWT):
‘Behold, by the remembrance of Allah shall you achieve contentment of heart.’ (Qur’an-Surah Ar-Ra’d, Verse 28)
With proper application, Salah (prayer) is that connecting line between Creator and creation. Performance of Salah, as it is required of us, and turning towards it in times of both thankfulness and need, is what adds lustre and essence to our lives. Inculcating the Sunnah(practices) of the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) too, adds dimension to our lives. Our actions and interactions then have better value.
- 7. JOIN FAMILY TIES AND KEEP GOOD COMPANY.
Strengthen bonds with relatives, mend ties with loved ones and cultivate such relationships that will bring about righteousness. Enjoy lively conversations, create and uphold good customs and play with your children and each other. It’s a Sunnah!
Many, many ahadith enumerate the virtues of joining ties of family and friendship. Among the dos and don’ts, one stands out; says The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him):
‘And be, oh slaves of Allah, as brethren.’(Hadith –Muslim)
- GIVE A LITTLE OF YOURSELF.
Share your time, money, skills or knowledge. Every little bit makes a difference, and no one benefits more than you.
The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) is reported to have said:
‘Smiling at your brother is a charity, enjoining good and prohibiting evil is a charity, giving directions to a lost person is a charity, removing harmful objects, thorns or bones from the roadway is a charity, and emptying from your bucket into your brother’s (to spare him the effort of filling his own) is also counted as an act of charity for you’.(Hadith Tirmidhi)
The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) is also reported to have said:
‘Giving charity does not, in any way, decrease your wealth’. (Hadith-Muslim)
In fact, it increases the barakah (blessings) in one’s wealth, if Allah wills, as well as earning you multiple rewards. Giving sadaqah (charity) is a means of purifying one’s wealth and self.
- BE YOUR VERY BEST. AFTER ALL, ALL YOU CAN DO IS TRY!
We all have good days. We most certainly have bad days too. We make mistakes, we get hurt. We feel disappointment in ourselves or anger toward others. Things break, people pass away.
Accept that this too comes from Allah, and this too shall pass. Accept that you’re human. Accept the pain, grief, anger or disappointment. Feel it, absorb it. Then take a breath and put your best foot forward. Life goes on, you can overcome. Your weaknesses are what make you human. Your humanity is your strength.Says Allah:
‘Allah wants to make things lighter for you, and mankind has been created weak.’(Qur’an Surah An-Nisa, Verse 28)
Yet when the angels, in bewilderment, asked Allah why he would place a being as flawed as man on earth, Allah answered: ‘Truly I know what you know not.’ (Qur’an Surah Al-Baqara, Verse 30)
It is because, despite our shortcomings, we constantly strive to overcome and excel.
- REFLECT AND GIVE THANKS.
Take stock of yourself. Not only will it give you a clearer perspective and better ideas on how to proceed, it will also bring the realization of how fortunate indeed you are. Even if your circumstance seems so dire at this moment, give thanks that you are among a tiny percentage of the world’s population who has received education, enabling you to read this.
The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) is reported to have said:
‘The best form of dua is to say ALHAMDULILLAH (All praise is due to Allah)’.(Hadith)
Surely, giving sincere praise and thanks to a benefactor can only increase their benevolence upon you.
- BE SINCERE.
Be true to Allah. Be true to people. Only then can you, in fact, be true to yourself. The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) has taught us:
‘Actions are judged by its intentions, and every man will have but what he intended.’ (Hadith Bukhari & Muslim)
- BE CLEAN.
Pay attention to your physical hygiene. Keep your environment clean. Use soap and water or a broom.
Purify your mind and soul. Make istigfaar (seek forgiveness and increase thikrullah-remembrance of Allah).
‘Truly, Allah loves those who turn unto Him inrepentance and loves those who purify themselves (through bathing, cleaning, and washing).’ (Qura’n Surah Al-Baqara, Verse 222)
‘Cleanliness is half of faith.’ (Hadith Muslim)
- TAKE REST.
Adequate sleep is necessary for optimum performance. Relieve yourself from stress. Relax with your loved ones among the soothing natural bounties all around.
It has been reported that The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) used to make it a habit to take the afternoon for rest and relaxation, often at the homes of family or friends.
‘And We have made for you, your sleep as a means of rest.’ (Qur’an Surah An-Naba’a, Verse 9)
Thus truly, rest is among Allah’s gifts to us.
A lot of what has been mentioned above is perhaps well-known or common sense, yet indeed, ‘a reminder is beneficial to the believers’ (Qur’an Surah Adh-Dhariyaat, Verse 55)
And Allah knows best…!