Friday, November 06, 2009

A Muslim Perspective on "knowing the path and walking the path"

One of my all time favorite movies has a quote that stood out to me when I first heard it. In The Matrix there is a scene where Morpheus says to Neo:
"There's a difference between knowing the path and walking the path."

The quote is said at one of the climax's of the movie when Neo rescues Morpheus from the government/machine compound against near all odds of success.

No this post is not about the movie but rather a Muslim's perspective on what that quote means to Muslims - or at least my take on what it means to Muslims.

I personally see this in context of my latest struggles with low points of eman. Alhumdulliah, my eman is higher now than where it was but we all know that our eman increases and decreases.

One thing I realized in my low points of eman was that as one of the reasons my eman decreased was that I was approaching my eman in the wrong way: I was only focused on the knowledge aspect of Islamic learning without much emphasis on practicing the knowledge I knew.

For instance, I found feeling low points of eman and I would just end up reading about different things of Islam like hadith or Seerah. The Islamic knowledge I gained I stored in my mind but still I felt down. I didn't understand why I still feeling down because I thought I was doing things to correct my low eman: increasing knowledge of the deen.

However, my failure was that I wasn't embodying the knowledge I was taking in.

To put it in a Muslim perspective...
'There is a difference in knowing what is Islam and living Islam.'

Even though I've always know that Islam is not just about intellect and there are actions that must accompany knowledge and speech, I somehow never manifested the final part.

Sure, I prayed and would read the Qur'an and thought that it would be enough.

It wasn't and isn't. At least not for me.

I needed to do more acts and study Islamic knowledge that I can actually implement into my life - not just study it purely as an intellectual pursuit.

I recently started to focus more of dikhr and small acts of Allah's remembrance that when I study, I know that I can implement these acts into my daily worship, thereby seeing an actual impact in my life as a Muslim.

Alhumdulliah, I know what it means to be Muslim and know for quite some time now.

But now, I'm living more and more of the Islam I know.

I hope that I will not only know what is eman but also taste the sweetness of eman.


At 12:46 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Asalamoalaykum Brother,

Good to know that you learned some very valuable lessons!
I really liked your side of how you thought was affecting your Iman and I believe that was in part affecting me too.
As for tasting sweetness of Iman, I'll share a secret...I was fortunate enough to be blessed with that when I gave up something I loved for the sake of Allah. It was painful in the beginning but it was a sweet pain coupled with the sweetness of Iman. Also, if you show patience at the first sign of calamity/problem, even before feeling sad/grief for it, that also gives your blood an instant sugar boost of Iman.

I read in a very good book which talked about etiquettes on approaching the Quran and in it the author said the same thing as you mentioned, "Don't study the Quran for an intellectual pursuit but study it for a far greater and better reason...which is getting to know the Creator."

Please keep posting, would like to know about your techs in terms of elevating your Iman.


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