Purification of the Heart and Soul in Islam | Tips from Quran and Sunnah

A heart is the most important part of a person because it is the “inner self” of any person. In Quran, this inner self is known as the “Qalb” or the “Heart”. What favors us (Muslims) in the sight of Allah (SWT) is the state of our heart. What will save us on the Day of Judgment is a sound heart. So we can say that heart is playing a very important role in our life and it has an amazing position in Islam.

When we have a pure heart then ultimately our character and soul will also be pure. The “Heart”, in Quranic terminology, is not just a piece of flesh in our body, but it is the center of all our feelings, emotions, desires, remembrance and attention. In Holy Quran, Allah Almighty says: “Their hearts relax at the remembrance of Allah” (Quran, 39:23). If you want the peace of heart and purity of your soul then remember Allah Almighty by heart.

There has always been an emphasis on improving our character in our religion Islam. The Prophet (SAW) said: “Nothing is heavier on the believer’s Scale on the Day of Judgment than good character” (Tirmidhi). From above saying we can conclude that on The Day of Judgment a person’s good character and pure heart will matter. In another hadith ‘Abu Huraira narrated: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH), said, “Allah does not look at your figures, nor at your attire but He looks at your hearts and accomplishments.”’ (Sahih Muslim)

Allah Almighty said in Quran: “He has succeeded who purifies the soul, and he has failed who corrupts the soul.” (Quran, 91:9-10). We learn from the above Ayah that our success in the Hereafter depends upon the purification of our hearts in this life.

Therefore, focusing deliberately every day on improving the state of heart helps us gain good character and increase our overall productiveness. Below are some tips from Quran and Sunnah that help you to purify the heart and the soul of person or individual.

  • Begin with Repentance: Sins are obstacles that restrict the opportunity to do good works; so begin your journey of purifying heart and soul with sincere repentance. In Holy Quran, Allah Almighty says: “Allah loves those who constantly repent” (Quran, 2:222). We can get Allah’s blessings and love while repenting. Our beloved Prophet (SAW) said that: “the best of creation, would seek repentance over 70 times a day; repentance from a sin reduces its sweetness – it discourages you from doing it again.”
  • Pay Attention to your inner thoughts: Allah Almighty is so close to us that even the thoughts that occur in our minds are known to Allah (SWT). Whether it’s good or bad thought Allah knows. In Quran Allah says: “And We have already created man and know what his soul whispers to him, and We are closer to him than [his] jugular vein” (Quran, 50:16). When we feel accountable to Allah for our thoughts, we intentionally judge the matter with understanding. We pay attention to our inner thoughts that help us to figure out other aspects of life and things about which we are focusing. By doing this we can increase our productivity, happiness and mental comfort.
  • Perform Obligatory Prayers: Performing obligatory prayers is one of the obvious things that every one of us should do. Sound actions originate from sound states. If you are struggling to keep up with the prayers, look at the spiritual causes that might be hindering your access to this blessing. Actions are based on Intentions. So we need to check out our intentions that are we should be sincere in intentions if we want to seek Allah’s pleasure. We should have sound actions and sincere intentions behind every act of goodness just like performing prayers on time by heart. Allah says in Quran: “He has succeeded who purifies himself, who remembers the name of his Lord and prays.” (Quran, 87:14-15)
  • Increase Small Acts of Kindness: When we tend to focus on our own mistakes rather than others, we become aware of all our deeds. Once we purify our heart we add good and beautiful things to it. Allah Almighty says in Holy Quran:”Take from their wealth a charity by which you cleanse them and purify them, and invoke blessings upon them.” (Quran, 92:103). Charity means not only giving wealth, but also giving people your time, your effort, and even a smile or a kind word.
  • Read Quran Daily: Make it a routine to read the amount of Quran no matter its one page or few lines that you can read easily after one of the obligatory prayers daily. Allah Almighty says in Quran: “Those who have believed and whose hearts are assured by the remembrance of Allah. Unquestionably, by the remembrance of Allah hearts are assured.”(Quran, 13:28). Read Quran daily it is the greatest form of Dhikr (Remembrance of Allah). Giving time to the Quran keeps us connected to Allah, making it more likely that we will consciously avoid sinning. It also helps in clearing our minds of unnecessary things, hence achieving clarity and peace.

In short, to achieve a high level of productivity, our hearts need to be light and beautiful. To purify our soul we should do the following things that are mentioned above. May Allah give us the strength to purify our heart and soul in a rightful manner! Ameen