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  1. Pandemic & its Effect People stuck at home are coming up with all kinds of things; some create fear and some bring a smile : ) You need to be careful, people are going crazy about being in lockdown. I’ve actually just been talking about this with the microwave and toaster while drinking coffee and all of us agreed things are getting worse. I didn’t mention anything to the washing machine as she puts a different spin on things and certainly not to the fridge as he is acting cold and distant. I did discuss it with the hoover and he said the whole thing sucks. Meanwhile, the blender has mixed feelings and the taps kept running hot and cold about the idea. The whisk refused to talk about it because she didn’t want to whip things intoa frenzy and the eggs kept quiet because they didn’t want to get a beating. I didn’t check with the oven because she’s far too hot headed. The bin justspouted a whole load of rubbish about the situation and the freezer just gave my a frosty reception. In the end, the iron calmed me down: she said everything will be fine - no situation is too pressing. The tin at the back of the cupboard with no label on thinks it’s a total mystery. The knife made some very cutting remarks. The squash was very cordial about it all. Unlike the lemon who was very bitter about it
  2. It did not take much time to spread the news in Malabar, through Arab merchants, about the emergence of a prophet named Muhammad (peace be upon him) in Makkah and his religion, Islam. When the moon was split into two as a miracle from Prophet Muhammad, many people inside and outside the Arabian peninsula had witnessed it. Cheraman Perumal Rama Varma Kulashekhara was said to be the king of Kerala at that time. He saw the miracle while he was relaxing on the rooftop of his palace in Kodungallore in a moonlit night. The king had come to know about Islam through Arab merchants and became more curious to know about the Prophet and his religion after the moon-splitting incident. Luckily a group of Arabs came to Kodungallore at that time, met the king to get permission to visit Ceylon, the present Sri Lanka. They wanted to visit the mountain which has the footsteps of Adam, the first human being and the first prophet. King Cheraman asked his Arab guests about the miraculous moon-splitting incident. Sheikh Sahiruddhin bin Baqiyuddhin Al-Madani, a prominent member of the team replied: “We are Arabs, we are Muslims. We have come here to visit Ceylon.” The king became more curious to hear about Islam directly from the residents of Madinah, the center of Islam and the first capital of the Islamic government. Sahiruddhin gave convincing reply to all the questions asked by the king. Cheraman then expressed his desire to embrace Islam and travel with them to meet the Prophet. This incident is well documented by M. Hamidullah in his book “Muhammed Rasulullah,” William Logan in his book “Malabar Manual” and Ahmed Zainudhin Makthum in his work “Thufhathul Mujahideen” as well as in the interview with Raja Valiya Thampuran of Kodungallore. Before going to Makkah, the king divided his Kingdom into three parts and appointed his sons and nephews to rule each province. He also visited many of his relatives and employees to give them instructions. He went to Kalankara to see his sister Sreedevi and told her about her decision to visit Makkah and embrace Islam. His nephew, son of Sreedevi, was appointed to rule the present Kannur district. He later embraced Islam and became Muhammed Ali, who established the Kannur Arakkal royal family and became the first Adiraja. The Arab visitors returned to Kodungallore from Ceylon to take King Cheraman along with them on their way back to Arabia. The king was waiting for them. They arrived in Shehr Muqlla. It is said the king met with the Prophet and this was mentioned by Balakrishnapillai in his book “History of Kerala: An introduction.”This historical meeting has been mentioned in the Hadith by Imam Bukhari and Abu Saeed Al-Khudri. The Hadith says: “A king from India presented the Messenger of Allah with a bottle of pickle that had ginger in it. The Prophet distributed it among his companions. I also received a piece to eat.” King Cheraman declared his conversion to Islam in the presence of the Prophet and adopted a new name, Thajuddin. He later performed Haj. As per the wishes of the Prophet, a team of his companions led by Malik bin Dinar started their journey with Thajuddin to propagate Islam in Kerala. But along the way the king fell sick. Before his death the king had written a letter to his sons to receive Malik Bin Dinar’s team and to give them all necessary help. The king later died and buried in Zafar (now Salalah) in Sultanate of Oman. After landing in Musris (Kodungallore), Malik Bin Dinar met the ruler of the area and handed to him the king’s letter. The ruler made necessary arrangements for them to propagate Islam. Some history books say that a temple named Arathali was converted to a mosque and named after Cheraman in Kodungallore. Bin Dinar and his colleagues built mosques in 12 places. Surprisingly all of them are situated along the coastal areas of Arabian Sea. Bin Dinar died when he was in Butkal, Karnataka, and was buried there. It is mere coincidence that King Cheraman and Bin Dinar were buried on the two banks of the Arabian Sea: Salalah and Butkal. Three conditions are to be fulfilled for a person to become a Sahabi or companion of the Prophet. First, he should embrace Islam from the Prophet or from his companion, second, should spend at least a small period of his lifetime with the Prophet, and third, should die as a Muslim. Cheraman fulfilled all the three conditions and can be said that he was the only Sahabi from Kerala, known to history. Source
  3. Part 1 – The reward for Illness and Hardship 1. Rasulullah Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam has stated, “No hardship, discomfort, worry, sorrow, grief, pain or distress afflicts a Muslim, to the extent of the pain of a thorn prick, but Allah will pardon his sins in lieu of it.” (Sahih Bukhari) 2. Rasulullah Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam has stated, “Do not curse fever, for it removes the sins of the children of Adam as a furnace removes rust from iron.” (Sahih Muslim) 3. Rasulullah Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam has stated, “When Allah tests a Muslim with physical illness, Allah instructs (the angels), ‘Continue recording the good deeds he would perform while healthy.' If Allah thereafter grants him cure, He washes and cleanses him (of sin); and If He takes his soul, He pardons him and grants him mercy.” (Musnad Ahmad) 4. Rasulullah Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam has stated, “When Allah decrees a certain rank (in Jannah) for a person which he cannot reach through his deeds, Allah afflicts him with a test in his body, wealth, or children, and then grants him the patience to bear that test until he reaches the rank decreed for him.” (Abu Dawud) 5. Rasulullah Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam has stated, “When those who suffered (in this life) will receive their reward on the Day of Qiyamah (judgement), those who enjoyed good health and prosperity will wish that their skins were cut with scissors in the world (so they may attain the same reward.)” (Sunan Tirmidhi) To be continued...
  4. Longing for our True Abode Introduction بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم نحمده ونصلي ونسلّم على رسوله الكريم In the early 1900s, a cholera pandemic broke out in India and spread to many countries across the globe. The pandemic began in 1899 and only abated in the year 1929. Historical records place the number of fatalities at 800 000 in India alone with more than half a million deaths reported in the years 1918 and 1919. The bewilderment, fear and panic that gripped the masses at the time cannot be described in words. We may well imagine the state of mind at the time when medical facilities were rudimentary, living conditions were abject, every home was visited either by sickness, death or despair and hundreds of Janaaza Salaah were performed after every Salaah. During this period, Allamah Ashraf Ali Thanwi (RA) began a series of discourses aimed at bringing calm to the minds of the terrified local populace. These discourses centred around the life of the hereafter and the joys and delights it holds for the believer which are only attainable upon death. The focus was on rekindling the desire and longing for our Final Destination and True Abode. This life of the world is but a pastime and a game. Lo! the home of the Hereafter - that is Life, if they but knew. (Quran 29:64) The effect of these discourses was profound. The dark clouds of morbidity and gloom dissipated, and sparkling rays of serenity and tranquillity fell on the faces of his captive audience. Such was the impact of these discourses that many were those who began to long for death to meet their Creator and take delight in the rich reward promised to the believers in the hereafter. Hassaan bin Aswad (RA) stated, “Death is the bridge that unites the lover with his beloved.” (Irshadus Saari) Shortly thereafter, Allamah Thanwi (RA) decided to pen the subject matter of his discourses for the benefit of the greater public. He titled this work, “Shawqe Watan” (Trans.: Longing for the Abode) as the true abode and home is without doubt the hereafter and it is therefore only fitting that its desire be in the heart of every believer. While the fatality risk of the present Covid-19 outbreak is significantly lower than the decimating effect of the plagues of the past, I felt it, nonetheless, important that the content of this book reach the Muslim Ummah who may be experiencing a similar type of mental anguish and crisis. In order to facilitate this, I have condensed the subject matter of the book and separated its contents in a collection of articles. In acknowledgment to the original source, I have used the title of the original work (albeit translated in English) as the name of this collection. I beg of Allah, the All-Mighty, to accept this humble endeavour solely for His Pleasure and use it to bring hope, comfort and solace to troubled and despondent hearts. Say: “Never will anything afflict us except what Allah has decreed for us, He is our protector.” And on Allah let the Believers put their trust. (Quran 9:51) Mufti Moosa Salie Jamiatul Ulama KZN 27 March 2020
  5. Therapy through the Qur’an Series - Sisters only! Aalimah S. Ahmed Zaynab Academy Online March 2020 Register here: http://www.zaynabacademyonline.org/registration-form-upcoming-workshops/
  6. Dealing with Coronavirus A booklet compiled by Shaykh Muhammad Saleem Dhorat (Hafidhahullaah) Islamic Da'wah Academy (Leicester UK) Whilst the recent outbreak of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) has brought about a sense of fear and panic amongst many, a true believer will have complete faith in his Creator and firmly believe that everything is from Allāh S and that He is All-Wise, hence in whatever He does lies goodness for us. Through this belief, one will find solace and peace in regards to the current situation. Read more... dealing_with_the_coronavirus
  7. Use of alcohol based hand sanitizers & disinfectants Q. Is it permissible to use Alcohol based Hand Sanitizers and to disinfect the Masjid with Alcohol based Disinfectants? A. Generally, the hand sanitizers and disinfectants available today in the market that are described as alcohol-based, contain ethanol/ethyl alcohol. Ethanol Alcohol is a synthetic/artificial based Alcohol. It is not alcohol that is prohibited in Shariah. Therefore, it is permissible to use hand sanitizers or disinfectants that contain ethanol alcohol to sanitize the hand and to disinfect the Masjid. And Allah Ta’ala Knows Best Mufti Ismaeel Bassa Confirmation: Mufti Ebrahim Desai (The answer hereby given is specifically based on the question asked and should be read together with the question asked. Islamic rulings on this Q&A newsletter are answered in accordance to the Hanafi Fiqh unless otherwise stated.) Fatwa Department Jamiatul Ulama (KZN) Council of Muslim Theologians
  8. Jazaakillah Bint e Aisha for all the valuable information
  9. What to do at the time of Natural Catastrophes
  10. Seven advices from Shaykh Muhammad Saleem (hafidhahullah) from Qur'an and Hadith (Click on image to enlarge)
  11. Guest Post by Hosai Mojaddidi The notion that adults, and in particular, parents and caregivers, are to be unequivocally trusted is something that most young children naively believe, unless or until that trust is broken. Typically, this involves some form of neglect or act of abuse, be it verbal, emotional, or physical or a combination of all three. Examples of such abuse may include humiliating a child in public, repeatedly ridiculing them or calling them cruel names, withholding love and affection from them, violent unprovoked outbursts, slapping, punching, etc. When a child is deliberately hurt by a parent, whether it’s ongoing abuse or an isolated traumatic incident, it can be especially difficult to overcome for the child, even years after the abuse is over. How can one determine if they have truly moved on from their traumatic past? Is “forgiving” your parents enough? The Cycle of Abuse Most people hold true that the purest form of love is between a parent and child and that somehow by simply becoming a parent one learns to love “unconditionally.” So naturally we expect that parents instinctively should love their children and treat them accordingly. The unfortunate truth is that many parents are not only abusive but are very capable of doing great harm to their children. In fact, a simple survey of the headline news on any given day will yield countless examples of seemingly “normal” parents who hurt, abandon, and in the most tragic cases even murder their own children. More than 8 out of 10 abused children are abused by their own parents. Every 6 hours in America a child dies in the US due to abuse or neglect.In 2005, more than 3.5 million children were reported as victims of child abuse or neglect. So while a person may know and understand on a rational level that their parents are human and flawed and capable of making mistakes, it can still be very difficult to disconnect from the negative memories and move past the feelings of betrayal. Such a person may grapple regularly with anger, resentment, passive-aggressiveness, hostility, apathy, or even hatred towards their abusive parent(s). At any given point, one can feel the full spectrum of these emotions or they may have learned to suppress their emotions and feel nothing at all. This is partly because of the destructive effect the abuse has on a child’s emotional development and self-esteem, which can carry well into adulthood if unresolved: “Children of abuse do not develop healthy self-esteem. They often blame themselves for the arguments and the violence. They may also believe that it is their own failing that they receive little love. Violence also creates low self-worth: For example, if a parent does not realize what happens to the child who witnesses or receives the abuse, the child may believe that, “My feeling (of fear or pain) are ignored, and my needs (for peace and comforting) are not being met…I must not be important. Fighting parents cannot attend to the child’s emotional needs. Often, the ups and downs of abusive homes are ignored: the child feels anxiety and agitation as the tension builds up; the child feels fear and helplessness during the battering; and then the child feels guilt and shame afterward. Without intervention, these feelings are never resolved.” – “Understanding Domestic Violence,” by Barbara Correy, M.A Some people carry on for years not realizing that they are still plagued with feelings of inadequacy, self-blame, and low self-esteem because of the abuse they experienced as a child. These feelings may manifest themselves in different ways, for example, how you perform in school or at work, how you allow your partners to speak to you or treat you, or how you feel about your own abilities and accomplishments. So even if you never confronted your parents or sought some type of treatment, you may falsely think you are “past” the abuse because of how long ago it occurred or because you deliberately suppress your memories, but the residual effects of it are actually with you every day. If one or more of your parents abused you as a child and you are now an adult, consider the following to know if you are truly over the abuse: 1) Do you feel any anxiety talking/interacting with your abusive parent(s)? 2) Do you try hard to impress them by sharing your accomplishments and goals? 3) Do you take their criticisms to heart more than you do other people in your life? 4) Do you constantly feel like nothing you ever do is good enough for them? 5) Do you feel a greater sense of value when they show you affection or approval? Forgiving & Moving Forward In Islam, we are constantly reminded throughout the Qur’an and in the hadith literature, that it is better to forgive those who wrong you than to have rancor towards them or cut them off. This is even more the case for parents, where children are told to be humble towards them and never even utter a single word of frustration to them: “Pardon them and overlook – Allah loves those who do good.” (Qur’an 5:13) “Those who control their anger and are forgiving towards people; Allah loves the good.” (Qur’an, 3: 134) “Your Lord hath decreed that you worship none but Him, and that you be kind to parents. Whether one or both of them attain old age in your life, say not to them a word of contempt, nor repel them, but address them in terms of honour. And, out of kindness, lower to them the wing of humility, and say: My Lord! Bestow on them Your Mercy even as they cherished me in childhood.” (Qur’an 17:23) To “forgive” one’s parents is therefore something anyone can do if they feel compelled enough to try; it can be as simple as telling them you forgive them or supplicating to God and asking for their pardon. The more difficult process is learning how to move forward from the abuse and become whole again. This isn’t as much about your relationship with your parents as it is about you. It’s about learning how to break away from the effects that the abuse had on your own self-image. This requires a deep level of introspection and a certain degree of faith and spiritual practice. And it’s important to note, that depending on your past experience with abuse, simply praying and offering forgiveness may not be sufficient. Yes, it’s important to put our faith in God and supplicate for relief from our tribulations, but we must also remember that He’s given us tools, such as science and medicine to learn and benefit from as well. Additionally, every person copes with trauma differently, so there isn’t a single approach to the healing process. Victims who’ve suffered through severe violence or sexual abuse, for example, typically need to do much more longterm work with the help of a mental health professional to overcome their trauma. Even so they may or may not ever reach the point of forgiving their parents; that decision is solely theirs.Violent/Sexual Abuse Cases In the Muslim community, oftentimes because of family pressure or culture, many victims of sexual abuse or domestic violence never report the abuse or if they do share it with someone they are pressured to keep it to themselves and “get over” what happened to them. A parent, sibling, friend or even the imam at a masjid may not know how to properly console the victim and defers to telling them to “forgive and forget,” or “let it go for the sake of Allah.” In this way, the victim may experience a form of revictimization, where they are once again silenced and their trauma dismissed and forgotten. Victims of severe abuse cases such as these need to be given a voice no matter how long ago the abuse occurred; they need to feel empowered and reassured that they have nothing to be ashamed of and they are not at fault. It is best to seek the help of a mental health professional who has experience helping victims of domestic violence and abuse. Others, even if they have the best of intentions and want to help, may end up causing more harm than benefit. mentalhealthfor muslims
  12. 10 Islamic Guidelines on Pandemics and Epidemics by Mufti Faraz Adam 1. Quarantine The Prophet encouraged quarantine:“Do not put a sick one (animal) with a healthy one (animal)” (Sahih al-Bukhari) “If you hear that a plague has hit a land, do not go to it; if it breaks out in a land where you are present, do not leave” (Bukhari) 2. Hygiene & Disinfecting The Prophetic practice which Muslims are recommended to follow are full of hygienic practices: a. Washing hands upon awakening b. Performing ablution and washing five times a day for prayers. c. Washing before/after eating d. covering mouth when sneezing 3. Impermissibility to consume rodents, reptiles, insects and other potential carriers of disease According to the Hanafi school, it is not permissible to consume rodents, reptiles, insects and other such creatures as they are from the Khaba’ith (filthy creatures) 4. Permissibility to cull infected creatures It is permissible to cull infected creatures and animals to stop the spread of the outbreak. 5. Not sharing essential and hygiene items Ibn Hajar advises against sharing items that are commonly used during an outbreak to prevent the spread of the outbreak. (Fath al-Bari) 6. Burying deceased immediately Islam encourages immediate burial. One of the wisdoms of this is to contain any disease in the carrier from being passed on. 7. Researching for potential vaccines The Prophet told us:“There is a remedy for every malady, and when the remedy is applied to the disease it is cured with the permission of Allah, the Exalted and Glorious.” (Sahih Muslim) 8. Correct belief We believe in what the Prophet told us:“Diseases are not intrinsically contagious.” (Sahih al-Bukhari) One only becomes infected by the permission of Allah. However, all precaution is encouraged due to knowing that Allah permits transfer through contact and His practice is to transfer through contacting infected people generally. 9. Cure is from Allah One’s belief and focus should solely be on Allah as the Prophet Ibrahim taught us:“It is He has created me, and it is He Who guides me; And it is He Who feeds me and gives me to drink. And when I am ill, it is He who cures me. (Qur’an 26:78-82) 10. Constant dua Make constant due to Allah for protection from this pandemic, as He alone is the ultimate saviour and refuge. Jamiatul Ulama
  13. Obsessive Compulsive Disorder and Scrupulosity in Islam Dr. Nafisa Sekandari “He who has health has hope, and he who has hope has everything.” – Arabian Proverb Wikipedia defines scrupulosity as a psychological disorder “characterized by pathological guilt about moral or religious issues. It is personally distressing, objectively dysfunctional, and often accompanied by significant impairment in social functioning”. Religious practice and devotion are not necessarily the cause of scrupulosity. Scrupulosity is considered a form of Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD). OCD can occur in different forms. There are a variety of different types of obsessions and compulsions. The nature of intensity of these symptoms may vary over time. In some cases, aggressive, sexual and religious obsessions can occur together in the same individual. The obsessions in OCD are the recurrent thoughts or impulses that make an individual anxious (such as the fear of germs in public places making one sick). Despite an individual’s efforts to control and suppress the obsessive thoughts, the obsessions persist. The thoughts often feel intrusive and disturbing despite the individual’s awareness of the thoughts being produced in their own mind. Obsessions can include fear of harming someone, becoming contaminated, and/or doing something embarrassing. Compulsions, however, are repetitive behaviors or mental acts the person feels driven to perform. These acts are often with ritualistic rigidity aimed to prevent the anxiety connected with the obsessions. These actions may include the urge to wash, count, check, or repeat phrases to oneself. OCD appears to be a biologically based disorder with severe psychological consequences. According to the OCD foundation about 1 in 100 adults – or between 2 to 3 million adults in the United States have OCD. The OCD foundation also estimates at least 1 in 200 – or 500,000 – kids and teens that have OCD in the United States. OCD statistics is assumed that up to 2.5 percent of the world population is affected obsessive-compulsive disorder. Some compulsive symptoms are detected in approximately eight percent of population. People suffering from OCD also end up suffering from depression, a lack of self-esteem and self confidence, very weak willpower, relationship problems, and social withdrawal. How Scrupulosity differs from devout faith and practice According to the hadith “Abu Huraira (may God be pleased with him) reported the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “The religion of Islam is easy, and whoever makes the religion a rigour, it will overpower him. So, follow a middle course (in worship); if you can’t do this, do something near to it and give glad tidings and seek help (of Allah) in the morning and at dusk and some part of the night” [al Bukhari]. Scrupulosity is when the individual is overpowered by their devotion and practice of their faith. The scrupulous individual will focus excessively on a few specific rules and rituals while neglecting other aspects of the religion. It often involves mistakenly thinking that innocent or unavoidable things are sin and so feeling needlessly guilty. When scrupulosity turns to obsessive thoughts, it can generate upsetting, uncontrollable blasphemous thoughts or images about God, or exalting the devil. Just as some people with OCD feel compelled to keep checking locks or washing their hands, others might feel compelled to obsess over blasphemous thoughts that they hate or to keep doubting their salvation. Due to the doubting nature of scrupulosity, it has been also been called “pathological doubt”. OCD sufferers will take a simple act of locking a door, switching off the oven, or seeking Allah’s forgiveness, and then worry abnormally over whether they did it correctly. They feel driven to keep seeking assurance far beyond what is rational. Scrupulosity is considered a hidden disease due to the fact that it can fill people with such false guilt that many are unlikely to admit to it, while others have no idea that they have an unhealthy sense of guilt and so suppose there is nothing wrong with them. In Islam, such unwanted thoughts are called wasawis (plural of waswasah), which are whispered into the minds and hearts of people by Shaitan (Satan). These wasawis play a significant role in many mental disorders that involve anxiety and cognitive distortions. Although wasawis can affect individuals regardless of age, sex, faith, or creed, the nature, content, severity, and influence of these thoughts varies in individuals. For some, they only cause mild anxiety and worry, while others are more severely affected to the point of becoming spiritually, mentally, emotionally, psychologically, and socially paralyzed. Recurring thoughts about catching germs, being unclean, and questioning one’s faith appear to be the most common form of OCD amongst Muslim men and women but those suffering from scrupulosity, the unwanted thoughts tend to be more debilitating. In the process of wasawis, Shaitan doesn’t care about the thoughts and doubts he sets buzzing around in our heads. Shaitan knows we will not be judged for the thoughts he has implanted in our heads because they are his thoughts, not ours. It is an impossible task to stop unwanted thoughts from coming in our minds. While we are busy battling unwanted thoughts from our mind, Shaitan accomplishes his goal of distracting us from the essential teachings of Islam. The goal of every Muslim should be to strengthen our faith and connection to Allah and not waste time avoiding certain thoughts or feelings. Shaitan will try and distract us from his real schemes and instead focuses our attention on past sins instead of present forgiveness. Shaitan will also try and trick us into becoming so preoccupied with needlessly worrying about dishonoring God with words that we do not even mean, that we don’t notice that we are dishonoring God by not believing the extent of His love and forgiveness, even towards those of us who feel certain we are the worst sinners ever to walk this planet. No matter how terrible the words or images that invade our mind are, we are not “sinning”. Shaitan will also try and entice us to fear Quranic verses that apply only to people who until their dying day stubbornly refuse to repent from their deliberate sin/backsliding and refuse to seek forgiveness. Shaitan’s hope is that we become so alarmed by the few words in the verses that do not apply to us that we lose sight of the enormous number of joyous verses that do apply – those promising salvation to everyone who repents and believes in Allah and His messenger. Shaitan’s dirty trick is to put despicable thoughts in our mind and then blame us or Allah for it. Allah isn’t fooled into blaming us for Shaitan’s trickery and we shouldn’t be fooled either. Just like we can’t stop Shaitan from being Shaitan, we can’t stop thoughts of temptation from popping into our thoughts. All we can do is stop ourselves from being deceived by the thoughts. All in all, Obsessive Compulsive Disorder is an anxiety disorder. It is fear/anxiety that keeps us hounded by doubts, guilt feelings or unwanted thoughts that keep repeating in our minds. It is the very nature of deceiving spirits to foster and exploit fear for their evil purposes, and their highest goal is to fool us into losing faith in our religion. Treatment of Scrupulosity Like other forms of OCD, scrupulosity responds to medication and cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT). About 60%–80% of patients show some degree of response to treatment. The neurotransmitter serotonin appears to be involved in the pathology of OCD. Medications that boost the level of serotonin in the brain such as SSRI’s (e.g. clomipramine, fluoxetine, sertraline, paroxetine, fluvoxamine, and citalopram) are the most effective in treating OCD. Cognitive-Behavioral therapy (CBT), specifically Exposure and Response Prevention (ERP) has been successfully used for the treatment of OCD. ERP focuses on the fact that compulsions provide only a temporary reduction of the anxiety produced by obsessions. The only way to experience more permanent relief is to habituate (get used to) the anxiety caused by the obsession, without performing the compulsion. The key factor of ERP is habituation. While this type of therapy typically causes some short-term anxiety, this facilitates long-term reduction in obsessive and compulsive symptoms. Facing the negative, unwanted thoughts will create anxiety. It is highly unpleasant, but they must disregard their fears in order to benefit from treatment. Facing their anxiety is an unavoidably unpleasant experience, but they must continually force themselves to stay close to God, even though their fears of rejection and divine displeasure are immense. As the person with scrupulosity begins to face his/her fears, he/she may experience a temporary increase in anxiety but with continued support and medication, the anxiety will decrease and symptoms will improve When overwhelmed by unwanted thoughts: Keep in mind, first and foremost, Allah (swt) has prescribed a balanced approach to Islam and reassured us His mercy and forgiveness are ever so near. So if fear, anxiety, or condemnation comes upon us, it is not from God. It is simply a dirty trick of Shaitan trying to get us to take our eyes off the infinite saving power of Allah (swt). When unwanted thoughts or fears hit, do your best not to let the attack distress you. Let it wash over you, keeping as calm and unconcerned as you can. The thoughts or images won’t hurt you, and God does not accuse you. Allah (swt) knows best, even better than you do, that these thoughts are not yours. Temptation usually takes the form of thoughts being satanically placed on our minds, and temptation is not sin. When you reach the point where you don’t react to the unwanted thoughts of doubt, oppressive guilt feelings, and spiritually repulsive thoughts, the attacks themselves will lessen. Psychological fact: Anxiety is a driving force behind Obsessive Compulsive Disorder so if you are not anxious about the thoughts, you’ll notice a significant reduction in the attacks. Spiritual fact: When Shaitan is thoroughly convinced that he can no longer use such things as unwanted thoughts to annoy you, or undermine your faith, he will eventually begin to tire of that approach and only try it now and again, just to check that you have not reverted to being concerned by such attacks. We give pleasure and power to Shaitan when we fall into his trap of supposing that his plan is to get us to think or feel wrong things. Shaitan’s main goal is to get us distracted so he can ambush us. Shaitan’s evil scheme is not to entice us to think or feel anti-God things but to fool us into denying the saving power of Allah (swt) by us forgetting Allah’s power to continually forgive every person who repents and puts faith in him. Daily Exercises: When unwanted thoughts creep in your mind, catch them and write them down. Right below the thought, challenge the thought by asking if that is a true thought. Is it 100% true about you? Below that write down, “it’s just a thought”. Practice daily affirmations such as “I’m doing the best that I can”, “My thoughts are just thoughts and only have power over me if I give them power and I choose not to empower these unwanted thoughts”, “I put my trust and faith in Allah’s mercy and forgiveness”. The affirmations might not feel true for you but repeating them daily will help you replace the negative thoughts with the positive affirmations, thereby lessening the power of the negative unwanted thoughts. Practice deep breathing exercises and repeat to yourself “I am safe and with Allah’s blessings, Shaitan can’t hurt me”. Actively get involved in a deeply engrossing activity that you enjoy such as exercising (yoga, running, biking, etc.) or playing a board game where you are not focused on the negative thoughts. Force yourself to smile. This simple act will automatically make you feel happier and relax. Your mind is incapable of having a good and bad thought at the same time. When you smile, you force your mind to focus on the positive rather than the negative. Work with a mental health professional to address the symptoms of scrupulosity. Past traumas (like sexual/physical abuse) and unsavory conduct and lifestyles of the past that may be responsible for severe guilt leading to OCD, must be dealt with in therapy with a trained mental health professional. Overall, relaxation, daily practice, education, medication, and cognitive behavior therapy can be combined to treat OCD and Scrupulosity. Coordination Between Islamic Leaders and Mental Health Professionals It is often useful for mental health practioners and religious leaders to work together in raising awareness and educating the community about Scrupulosity. The religious leader can help the community members distinguish legitimate concerns about faith and guilt from stereotyped religious obsessions. If an individual is compulsively repeating a ritual until it is perfect, the Imams may need to give individuals special permission to perform a ritual in a less than perfect manner. This can lead to freedom from excessive guilt and stereotyped religious obsessions. Ultimately, the individual is freed to experience a richer life in his or her family and faith community. mentalhealthformuslims
  14. Wa'alaykumus salam warahmatullah sister Fatimah Welcome to the forum. The following is quoted from the question/answer above (towards the end) - I've underlined the important part Therefore it is not inserted inside the private part. I hope this is of help insha-allah
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