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abdelfatahdroesh's avatar

How can I keep balance between the requirements of spirit and body?

Asked by abdelfatahdroesh (17points) May 5th, 2014

can I keep balance between the requirements of spirit and body

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4 Answers

thorninmud's avatar

Here’s what I think you mean (let me know if I’ve got it wrong): What do you do when your desires come into conflict with what you know you should do?

You exercise impulse control. This is an important aspect of maturity. It’s a mental skill that anyone can develop, but the only way is to do it over and over again. You experience a desire, the executive control function of your brain understands that you’d better not yield to the desire, and so you direct your attention elsewhere. Every time you do this, it becomes a little easier.

shehabzooz's avatar

Islam is a religion that achieves perfect balance among all the facts in man. As man consists of spirit, body, heart, mind and soul, and as he has two lives a worldly life in which he lives now and a life after his death, so Islam guaranteed happiness to all facts in man and satisfaction of his desires in a perfect precise balance so that no fact exceeds or dominate another.
Early Muslims honored by being contemporary with the light of revelation knew this great perfect method. When the prophet (Blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) fraternized between Abid’dardaa’ and Salman Al-Faresy, once Salman was out of Medina when he came back he went to the house of his brother Abid’dardaa’ to visit and see him, he found his wife Omod’dardaa’ not caring about herself, he asked her: What’s wrong? She said: Your brother Abid’dardaa’ only want to get ready for the hereafter and he deserted life.
When Abid’dardaa’ came back and food was served and he asked Salman to eat but Salman said: I won’t eat until you eat with me, Abid’dardaa’ said: I am fasting, but Salman swore that he must eat with him, they ate and slept. Whenever Abid’dardaa’ wanted to get up to pray at night, Salman ordered him to sleep again until it was near dawn, they both got up, did ablution and went to pray dawn with the apostle of Allah (Blessings and peace of Allah be upon him), when Salman saw his brother angry (because he didn’t let him pray at night), he said to him: Your God has a duty upon you, your wife has a duty upon you and your body has a duty upon you, give each one his due right. Abid’dardaa’ went to the apostle of God and complaint what Salman did with him hoping that the apostle of God would support him, the apostle of God (Blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “Salman is right, Your God has a duty upon you, your soul has a duty upon you and your family has a duty upon you, so give each one his proper right.”
So we see Islam asks a Muslim to give his own body what it needs from food, drink, wife, residence and other things it needs. A Muslim can marry the most beautiful woman, eat the most tasteful food, drink the best drinks and dwells the most splendid houses on condition that:
1— He gets all this by legal ways accepted by God, and he gets away from prohibited or illegal ways because God says:
“Eat of the good things We have provided for you,” Surat Al-Bakara, Verse 57.
2— He gets away from squander and exceeding the proper limits in doing all this, as God says:
“Eat and drink: But waste not by excess, for Allah loves not the wasters,” Suirat Al-A’raf, Verse 31.
3— He also gets away from boast pride and arrogance, as God says:
“For Allah loves not any arrogant boaster.” Surat Lukman, Verse 18.
The prophet (Blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) mentioned the two things together and said: “Eat, give charity and wear clothes but away from squander and boast.”
4— He should thank God properly after enjoying every favor from God to deserve more from God’s bounty as He promised to grant His grateful servants, He says:
“If you are grateful, I will add more (favors) unto you,” Surat Ibrahim,Verse 7.
God also urges man to be careful about the needs of spirit such as remembrance, contemplation, obedience, worship and approximation to God, all that should be after satisfying the needs of the body and man’s needs in this life, God decided this even to His perfect apostle and the last of His prophets our master Mohammed (Blessings and peace of Allah be upon him), He said to him and to us at the same time:
“Therefore, when you are free (from your immediate task), still labor hard. And to your Lord turn (all) your attention.” Surat Asharh, Verses 7, 8.
I.e. when man finishes his duties for himself and for people around him, he shouldn’t tend to amusement, heedlessness and entertainment, but he should hasten to the needs of the spirit by getting nearer and closer to God.
He can also have some amusement for his soul on condition that he gets this from legal things accepted by Sharia and be far away from illegal things, the prophet (Blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “Revive hearts time after time because if souls get bored they get blind.”
Reviving is by legal singing, meaningful music, non-violent sports, innocent entertainment with friends, joking with wife and children, going for a picnic to meditate in God’s creatures in plants, orbits, stars, animals, birds, insects and others, on condition that he performs duties at their due times and not commit sins that get God angry.

Espiritus_Corvus's avatar

For me, it continues to be a combination of

Doing physical things I enjoyed when I was younger, like bike touring, kayaking, surfing, hiking, sailing, scuba diving. This led to the gym so I could do these things with less effort; with a more effective machine, which made the activities more fun and less work. This led to yoga because I found I was getting muscle-bound, tight.

I began to find that during my “in the zone” moments while performing all the above, that I was becoming introspective and I enjoyed that. This led to forma meditation, which I began practicing every morning and some evenings. Along with many other things, meditation put current events in perspective, made my days less stressful, gave me a further sense of well-being.

Then I ran across this:
“Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.”
~ Mahatma Gandhi

So, as I came to understand it, a healthy balance between mind, spirit, and body was based on Shakespeare’s maxim: above all else, to thine own self be true. Like the workouts in the gym which made my favorite activities more fun, honesty (harmony) in words, thoughts and action would rid me of the dissonance between my beliefs and lifestyle and the resultant fear that I was squandering my 70-odd years here as nothing more than an empty shell, a bullshit artist with me as my best customer.

Let me tell you, this harmony thing was difficult at first: it led to a divorce, estrangement from family members, a change of jobs and life style, and it forced me to walk my talk at great expense of old friendships with people I’d out-grown, or had unhealthy relationships with from the beginning. It was a hard journey, coming out of a sick society clean, and it continues to be so. But the rewards are much, much greater now.

For example, there was a scary moment when I realized that I was a real misogynist, but it turned out that it wasn’t just women, it was everyone. I was a misanthrope, and somehow that was OK.

Now it all is habitual, and I jealously protect the habits I’ve formed. I removed myself from our society and live on a boat, and most recently a farm in the Caribbean. It took a determination and a lot of will power to get here. I can control the people who enter my life a lot more effectively than I could when I was in a more populous, less beautiful environment selling a good part of my week for money which I spent on unnecessary garbage most of the time.

I’m not bragging, believe me, this was not an easy journey. I am living life on my terms as best as I can and it is much easier to do this without the pressures of a sick society. I like the population which surrounds me, they are definitely more honest in the way they live their lives. Bullshit walks down here for the most part. Or it limps out of town.

‘n shit like that.

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