‘Read! In the name of thy Lord and Cherisher, Who Created-‘
(Surah Al Alaq, verse 1, the first Revelation)
Assalamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh, my dear brothers and sisters.
I’m reading Napoleon Hill’s ‘Think and Grow Rich’ book and wanted to share something that he wrote, ‘that any impulse of thought which is repeatedly passed on to the subconscious mind is, finally accepted and acted upon by the subconscious mind, which proceeds to translate that impulse into its physical equivalent, by the most practical procedure available.‘
In the past, others have asked me how to maintain or improve the level of one’s iman (faith) and taqwa (high consciousness of God). I used to ponder this question myself and as I read Napoleon Hill’s words, one solution came to me, which I believe could help us increase iman and taqwa in ourselves.
It is to constantly have good and positive thoughts of iman and taqwa in our minds. Even if we know we don’t have it yet, the more we think of it in our minds, the more we find ourselves achieving a higher level of iman and taqwa. (Hey, this is the Law of Attraction again, isn’t it..?) I sometimes tell people to ‘fake it until you make it.‘ Insha’Allah, you will find yourself subsequently following through with the ibadah (rituals) of worship soon after.
Begin to re-write these messages in your mind. I learnt this lesson from a 7-year old boy named Rashid (which by the way, means guide in Arabic…), the son of our halaqah circle teacher. We were having a break, asking if anyone wanted any coffee, when Rashid suddenly pipped in and said,’Coffee, coffee, coffee! You know it’s bad for you but you still keep drinking it!’
Well, I used Rashid’s words to explain later on why we muslims should stop focusing on the negative and bad in the state of our Ummah and start looking for the good in everyone. There are 1.2 billion muslims in the world and if all of us worry and think negative about ourselves, then our thoughts becomes a ‘collective du’a’ for all of us. No wonder we haven’t been able to get out of the rut we are in right now…
One good example is an orphanage I volunteer at in Puchong. When I was invited to do a training there 3 years ago, the orphanage just had three small buildings; the childrens’ hostel, the open mussola where they prayed and had programs and the office/kitchen. They sold plants that they grew in a small nursery adjacent to the office.
Fast forward to 2009 when I sent Ramadhan Charts to the orphanage recently. They had set up a small, open restaurant next to the grounds, operated by the children themselves. The buildings are well-maintained, the grounds clean and I noticed they were able to buy over the piece of land next to the orphanage. University students and community members would come in droves every month to do free programs there, I once watched a free performance by famous nasheed group ‘Mawaddah’ who stopped by one evening and there always is an air of industry and liveliness every time I visit.
This was an orphanage and they do rely on donations from the public but what I admire most about them is that they choose to stand on their own two feet and not depend entirely on public funds, through selling plants and setting up a restaurant. And this indirectly brings in help and funds from others. I remember this time last year, the caretaker was telling me she was just about to go and buy school shoes (using their own money), when she received a call from a group of people wanting to sponsor shoes for the kids!
Thoughts are a du’a and when each and every one of us begin to ‘think and grow rich in iman and taqwa‘, I really believe we will begin to see our community rising up and becoming a force in the world, Insha’Allah.
Allah knows best.