Learning is organic, and new lesson are taught to expand further from what has previously been covered. In Qur’anic classes, students had to revise first the previous lessons before being taught further. If their revision is not favorable, the teacher will not proceed to teach any new lesson.
You are to refer to your notes and the PowerPoint slides available.
From the list of topic or sub-topics, as reference for your group – discuss and prepare to do a brief presentation to the class for each topics or sub-topics.
‘ Ulama (scholars) of Tasawwuf/ ‘Ilmul Ahklaq , has identified various states in which the human “ Nafs ” (self) may be in. It does not mean that there are many “ nafs ” in a person, but it simply means to describe the nature of characteristic of the “ Nafs ” which can be subjected to change.
Perhaps we can describe this state as the dominate “ mood ” of our “ Nafs ”. One has to be aware of one’s state – termed as “ Haal ”. From the lower imperfect state, one has to strive to overcome them thereby attaining towards the subsequent level until one reaches the higher and perfect state.
As explained previously “ Nafs ” is that “ consciousness that is you ”. The state of our consciousness in our nafs (self) varies according to its development. Because man is firstly aware of himself, naturally he seeks to satisfy his self due to tendencies motivated by the inherent powers within him which is constantly developing.
His awareness of himself is naturally stronger than the awareness of others. Thus his impulses are primarily concern with only fulfilment of its own desires and satisfaction.
If this obsession continues while he is still oblivious to the relationship with others besides himself, unconcerned as to its moral implication, whether it is detrimental to others or not, not even caring about the effect that his present actions will have on his future, etc. - the danger of such a trait in that person is obvious.
This state is basic in everyone, and serves as the motive for it incite man towards acting out his will and desire. This is called “ nafs al-‘amarah ”- the commanding self.
We pamper our Self or Ego and regard it to be THE most important consideration.
We forget who we actually are, and in Whose presence we exist. We may even entertain a grandiose notion of our bloated Ego - “ I am better than he ” not by any moral or objective standard but because “ I feel I am better ”.
Sometimes attributing ourselves a bigger than life importance, carrying ourselves about with an air of arrogance. Even our expectations from others also may be of the unrealistic kind.
We sometimes tend to be overly sensitive, even “ paranoia ”; entertaining to our suspicion - where benefit of doubt should be given to others. We harbour “conspiracy theories” and easily accept evil suggestions and whisperings of Satan and of bad people inciting enmity and conflict, judging others without evidence.
Our capacity to “ love” , which is a natural traits or tendency within us - is wholly directed more to our Self. We look at ourselves always as perfect and unblemished, and expecting others to look at us likewise.
Thus within us is a battle of sort for dominance between these two states. Usually because the commanding state has been dominant, suggestions from our “ Nafs al-law-waa-mah ” may even at times be ignored or opposed.
Islam teaches us to always listen to this state, as it is naturally in agreement with all of its moral teachings and serves as an advocate within man.
To constantly neglect listening to this state may cause the effect of its “voice” to be gradually diminished.
Central to the teaching of Islam is consciousness of the Oneness of God ( TAU H EED ). This consciousness then permeates to teach us to consider our attitude and relationships towards our Creator, ourselves and others. It should lead to not merely an awareness but to instil reverential fear of transgression ( TAQWA ).
Knowing Who Allah is, necessarily teaches us our place in His vast kingdom and what our relationship with them should be. Without consciousness of Allah, due to strong obsession with ourselves, three (3) “ ailments ” may accrue in our “ Nafs ” which impedes us from the proper relationship with Allah, ourselves and others: