Friday, September 14, 2012


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by Professor Dr: Hayati AYDIN*

The article emphasizes two important worship of Islam. Namely focuses on  two different size of Prayer: The Supplication (Du'a) and Prayer (Salat)  word.
 The Supplication (Du'a) in Islamic tradition means a person's giving his whole self to God and present his physical and spiritual needs to him. Salat (Prayer) is communication between the temporal and spiritual domains. İn fact prayers are as regulators and equaliser systems on personality and character. In the context of worshipping, if prayers done according to consciousness they help improve man both inside and outside. As man consciously during worshipping God feels that he is in front of God, He feels that all of time he is in front of God and his control regulates his behaviours.



In the Arabic language Salat (worship) means to the meaning of supplication (dua)1 For example to say “Sallaytu alayhi” is coming to the meaning of“ I supplicated to the God for Him”. 2 Just as in some verses, Salat expression is used as Dua. For example,” Invoke blessings (Salli) upon them. Your blessing (Salat) will surely bring them peace” (At-Taubah, 9/103). “God and His angels shower their blessings (Yusallune) to the Prophet .O believers you should also send your blessings (Sallu) on him” (Al-Ahzab, 33/ 56).
But generally Salat is used for worshipping. Raghib al-Isfahani says that the entitling of Salt as Salat is because its origin and supplication and the entitling of it as Salat is similar to entitling of anything by some-parts which itself includes. 3
For this reason Salat statement includes The supplication (du'a) and salat (prayer) together. 
These two elements correspond to different needs of human soul.
2.1. The Supplication (Du'a): In dictionaries, Dua (Prayer) comes closer to the meaning of calling, wishing and crying for help but in Islamic tradition it means a person's giving his whole self to God and present his physical and spiritual needs to him.
Du'a is the personal expression of one's individual desires, needs and anxieties.
“Take (O Muhammad), from their wealth a charity by which you purify them and cause them increase, and invoke [Allah's blessings] upon them. Indeed, your prayers are reassurance for them. And Allah is Heraing and Knowing” (At-Taubah, 9/103)
In fact the main purpose of Dua (prayer) is to be in the meaning of supplying the needs of people for God and to make supplication to God.  Then we can say Dua (prayer) is a dialogue with God. The need of prayer is a natural one.  “Psychologically speaking, prayer is instinctive in terms of in its origin. Prayer as a means of spiritual illumination is a normal vital act by which the little island of our personality suddenly discovers its situation in a larger whole of life.”4
Generally, according to Muslim psychologists, prayers are as regulators and equaliser systems on personality and character. In the context of worshipping, if they (prayers) done according to consciousness they help improve man both inside and outside. As man consciously during worshipping God feels that he is in front of God, He feels that all of time he is in front of God and His control regulates his behaviours.  Here! In the context of worships supplication help man to overcome his difficulties and this psychological effect gives a result in man's sincerity of worshipping.5
Additionally, especially the supplication has very important effect on soul's presence. According to Thomas Hyslop: The great West Riding Asylum in England the best sleep-producing agent is prayer which his practice has. He says that “I say this, purely as a medical man. The exercise of prayer, in those who habitually exert it, must be regarded by us doctors as the most adequate and normal of all the pacifiers of the mind and calmer of the nerves.”6
A worshiper takes refuge behind God's shelter during his worshipping.  This provides a support to our spiritual side. Just as Alexis Carrel about supplication that there is a power in the supplication. Even though we do not want but this occurs. For this reason, we should leave children alone and give the opportunity of listening themselves. 7
William James says that “for most of us, a world with no such inner refuge when the outer social self failed and dropped from us would be the abyss of horror. I say “for most of us”, because it is probable that individuals differ a good deal in the degree in which they are haunted by this sense of an ideal spectator. It is a much more essential part of the consciousness of some men than of others. Those who have the most of it are possibly the most religious men. But I am sure that even those who say they are altogether without it deceive themselves, and really have it in some degree.”8
These explanations indicate that the supplication has a great impact on the occurrence of spiritual presence.
  2.2. Prayer (Salat): Islamic faith includes Salat (prayer; dhikr), which is one the beautiful direction of Islam. Salat is considered the most important dhikr (The remembrance of God) in Islamic tradition.
Prayer is communication between the temporal and spiritual domains. In its most exterior usage, the word implies petition of the individual before the Creator.9  By the dhikr man cleans his soul's dirt and purges his negative elements. For this reason, by dhikr man gradually goes away from his troubles and the illness of soul. “ That prayer has great power which a person makes with all his might. It makes a sour heart sweet, a sad heart merry, a poor heart rich, a foolish heart wise, a timid heart brave, a sick heart well, a blind heart full of sight, a cold heart ardent. It draws down the great God into the little heart, it drives the hungry soul up into the fullness of God, it brings together two lowers. God and the soul in a wondrous place where they speak much of love.”10 Especially dhikr is recognised by all Sufis as the most direct means of alleviating the illness of soul.11  The God emphasises the fact in those verses:
“Who have believed and whose hearts have rest in the remembrance of Allah. Verily in the remembrance of Allah do hearts find rest! Those who believe and do right: Joy is for them, and bliss the journey's end” (Ar-Ra'd, 13/ 28-29)
This verse is proving us that the remembrance of God gives man rest and soul presence. Because, by dhikr man comes to the close of divine existence and participate to the divine unity. Anyway Islam itself is the religion of nature. God says in the Qur'an:
“So keep yourself exclusively on the way, the creational law of God according to which He has made mankind…” ( Ar-Rûm, 30/30)
As nature shows an incline to the behaviour that accord to  it. The nature of human has been patterned by God on the Fitratallah (God's own nature). For this reason to make dhikr is to act according to the nature; this calms down man in the context of soul. 
The Qur'an calls Islam as Al-Din Al-Qayyim (the right religion, natural religion). “So set your whole being upon the Religion as one of pure faith. This is the original pattern belonging to God upon which He has originated humankind. No change can there be in God's creation…”” (Ar-Rum, 30 / 30)
In this point to be a Muslim is to be in behaviours according to nature. Contrary behaviour to Islam is a contradiction with nature.
Ibn Sina (Avicenna) says that the more one's nature is close to moderate, the better he becomes suitable to get virtue level intelligently and practically.12 In this viewpoint since Islam is the religion of nature, it makes man's nature moderate in giving man the best nature opportunity in the progress of him. In my opinion, this view makes sense in that the past generation who assimilated faith they progressed in short time in virtues and knowledge.  Because, the religion of Islam brought what reinforces to fitrat.
Ghazali says that all of organs enjoy the actswhich is consistent with their nature. Eye enjoys looking at the beautiful landscape; aural enjoys hearing the nice voices. Likewise heart has been created for Allah and enjoys Allah. 13 
According to Sufism (mysticism of the Islam) when a man makes dhikr he reaches in peace, comes to presence, be in rest and returns to the fitratallah wherein upholds the trust and thus fulfils its covenant, for by the light of the dhikr it sees the true relation between the servant and his Lord.14
The virtues of dhikr are numerously to be described. For example, one is this according to Said Nursi:
“Everyone wants a solace and seeks a pleasure in order to be saved a little from the upheavals of life and its heavy burdens, and to take a breather; everyone searches out something familiar and friendly to banish the loneliness. The social gatherings in civilized life afford a temporary, but heedless and drunken familiarity, intimacy, and solace for one or two out of ten people. However, eighty per cent live solitary lives in mountains or valleys, or are driven to distant places in search of a livelihood, or due to agencies like calamities and old age which make them think of the hereafter, they are deprived of the sociableness of man's groups and societies. The situation affords them no familiarity, friendliness, or consolation.
And so, the true solace and intimacy and sweet pleasure of such a person is, being turned to his heart in those distant places and desolate mountains and distressing valleys, to work it by means of the remembrance of God and reflective thought. Saying: “Allah!”, it is to become familiar with Him with his heart, and through that familiarity to think of the things around him, which were regarding him savagely, as smiling on him familiarly, and saying: “My Creator, Whom I am recollecting, has innumerable servants here in my place of solitude, just as He has everywhere. I am not alone; loneliness has no meaning.” Through his belief, he receives pleasure from that familiarity. He understands the meaning of the happiness of life, and offers thanks to God”.15
As told above Salat (Prayer) is the biggest dhikr. For this reason, Islam gives man a beautiful psychological state by its prayer ritual. If a man performs prayer (salat), he will feel beauty in his soul after prayer. His soul can not take shelter his boundary after prayer. This âyath explains this reality:
“Those who believe and find peace in their hearts from the contemplation of God: Surely there is peace of heart in the contemplation of God” (Ra'd, 13/28)
The hearts of those who believe are described in this verse as finding a calm, sweet rest in remembrance of God. Hearts get peace, get calm and break from their sorrow by God. Because the beginning and the end finishes in God and all of causes are based on God. The possible chain of existence cuts to God. God is who there is nobody above Him and has nothing further from Him, because Allah is who, far from the end and the quantity both in existence and in conscience, has nothing forward from him that the heartily movement can be further than Him.
Since the biggest dhikr is prayer (salat). As we pointed out in our article (Islam: The relion of peace in Sime journal) the prayer transmits man's soul to quit. Owing to the prayer's this peculiarity Prophet Muhammad (p.u.h.) was saying to Bilal16 on the time of the canonical call to prayer Azan “(O Bilal ) stand up make quit us by azan” 17
Prayer calms down people's soul, because (a) the prayer contacts to the person into the divine world, as he comes to the presence and experience his ascension (Mirac) gets the name as ascent (Mirac) of the believer (Mumin); (b) in prayer one contacts to the God and participate to His divine unity. For example when a person performs prayer as if he speaks with the God in Al-Fatihah:
“All praise be to Allah, Lord of all the worlds. Most beneficent, ever-merciful. King of the Day of Judgement. You alone we worship, and to you alone turn for help. Guide us (O Lord) to the path that is straight, The path of those You have blessed, not of those who have earned Your anger, nor those who have gone astray”(Fatihah,1 / 1-7)
Ibn Atâ'illâh says that prayer is a cleansing for hearts from the stain of iniquities, and an opening to the door of the mysteries. Prayer is the place of confidence and the wellspring of intimacies; It widens the scope of the mysteries, and shines on the rays of the luminaries.18 Especially, night prayer is very much effective for soul.
“Surely in the watches of the night the soul is most receptive and words more telling” (Al-Muzzammil, 73/6)
Since Al-Muzzammil sura's eighth âyath says that “Recite the name of your Trainer...” (Al-Muzzammil, 73/8) in the verse the word “trainer” means educator that shows the night prayer that raise the man to spiritual degrees and in this (way), the role of the God's training to man will be grand.
According to Fahkr al-Din Al-Razi, when the heart of man observes the physical world he feels himself in sorrow and grief and in hard tendency about getting it. But when he thinks of God he feels a great calmness with the help of the light given by God. 19 However the psychiatrists and psychoanalysts can not understand this spiritual position. Since psychiatrists and psychoanalysts are interested only in clinical circumstance, they did not see the person's spiritual depth that can be caught in worship.
Especially the night prayer makes powerful performance of man's soul. According to Fahkr al-Din Al-Razi, man gets some mystery things along night waking up. He says such: When man at night dark at his home makes worship and dihkr surely he isn't busy with anything. In this time, heart goes towards mental thoughts and divine ideas, sometimes bright and spiritual conquests, sometimes happiness and shudder that get from contact to divine world or bright ideas.20
In just the same way al-Kindi says: The soul substance of man is as the substance of God in power. When a man isolates oneself from lust and taste of word it pierces through the truth of things. If after this, it look after the truth of things and search it, this transmit to the soul's clean and it's polished; then emerge the truth of things as image of things appear in mirror. 21
Some Modern Western scholars are thinking like al-Kindi.  For example, Jung in his famous theory of type, classified sensation and intuition together as ways of gathering information, as distinct from ways of making decision. Sensation refers to a focus on direct sense experience, perception of details, and concrete fact: what one can see, touch, and smell. Sensing types tend to respond to the immediate situation and deal effectively with all sorts of crises and emergencies. Intuition is a way of comprehending sensory information in terms of possibilities, past experience, future goals, and unconscious process. Strongly intuitive people add meaning to their perceptions so rapidly that they often cannot separate their interpretations from the raw sensory data. Intuitives integrate new information quickly, automatically relating past experience and relevant information to immediate experience. Because it often includes unconscious material, intuitive thinking appears to proceed by leaps and bounds. Jung has called the least developed function in each individual the inferior function. It is the least conscious and the most primitive, or undifferentiated. For some people it can represent a seemingly demonic influence, because they have so little understanding of or control over it. Since it is less consciously developed, the inferior function may also serve as a way into the unconscious.Jung has said that it is through our inferior function, that is least developed in us, that we see God. By struggling with and confronting inner obstacles, we can come closer to the divine.22
As seen, Jung's thought is like Al-Kindi on this subject. Even though psychologists don't agree on this kind of information23 I believe as Al-Kindi too. In old times, I removed myself from badness and gossip etc. For a long time, I saw hundreds of true dreams in the night. This fact manifests that maybe psychologists could not recognize the soul sufficient. Because the soul is a very mysterious and intangable existence .No one can tell that people who see the future events in their dreams gain this kind of quality by working, but it is certainly the pleasure of Allah. They are some senses, depending upon some senses, perceived from the divine world.
Believers accept that man can build up a connection with the other world and the cosmos. The Qur'an says: “…I have breathed into him (Adam) of My sprit…”(Al-Hıcr/, 15/29; Sâd, 38/72). But unfortunately we lost our souls as Jung's point out: “The marvellous development of science and techniques is counterbalanced by an appalling lack of wisdom and introspection” 24
 Even though as those rituals convey some wind of celestial religion, in my opinion, those are some destroyed rituals, suits to the characteristic of Far East countries. In almost every culture there are prayers, but they differ from each other. In terms of this subject, as meditation and Yoga rituals do not reach the hillside of prayer (salat), they can not connect the man to the cosmos and the other world, and can not convey the man to a horizon. But the prayer raises the man to divine world.25
Man's soul is a transparent essence and has transcendence direction. This fact has been emphasized by psychologists densely by Abraham Maslow's Transpersonal Psychology and Ken Wilber. 26
Muhammad Iqbal says those about the subject:
“The 'Heart' is a kind of inner intuition or insight which, in the beautiful words of Rumi, feeds on the rays of the sun and brings us into contact with aspects of Reality other than those open to sense-perception. The total -Reality, which enters our awareness and appears on interpretation as an empirical fact, has other ways of invading our consciousness and offers further opportunities of interpretation. The revealed and mystic literature of mankind bears ample testimony to the fact that religious experience has been too enduring and dominant in the history of mankind to be rejected as mere illusion. The facts of religious experience one  facts among other fact of human experience and, in the capacity of yielding knowledge by interpretation one fact is as good as another.27 We are not yet in possession of a really effective scientific method to analyse the contents of non-rational modes of consciousness.28
Purification of the outer organs accompanied inner purification. When we think of lemon, how our mount be comes watery; so there is a correlation between body and soul.  For this reason, who seek the nearness of God always trays to remain pure both outwardly and inwardly. the Qur'an says: “Prayer prevents transgression of passions and the grave sins”(Al-Ankabut, 29/45) As, when a man stands in front of God five times in every day and has its consciousness, he can't courage to do wrongdoing. By praying, the intimate God-man relationship is deepened and make man a person who spiritually strengthened. So it would appear that one of the important roles of Islamic prayer is to act for a protection against the defilement and contamination that affect man's life. When a man lives his life with consciousness of his link with the Lord, he acquires an inward disposition to absorb God's Attributes and obtains the capacity to resist evil.29  As prayer is the means of progress towards God, it is also a means of making us obey God's orders and preventing us from doing that which God has prohibited and forbidden. When a person performs ablution, thinking of all the sins committed by him through his different organs, and goes on praying to God as a penitent asking for His forgiveness and mercy, his sins are forgiven, and hands and face are illumined.30
As a result according to Quran  the remembrance of God gives man rest and soul presence. Since Salat is considered the most important dhikr (The remembrance of God) in Islamic tradition by the Supplication (Du'a) and Prayer (Salat)   man comes to the close of divine existence and participate to the divine unity. This enables him largely psychological serenity and peace of mind.


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1* At Divinity Faculty of Yuzuncu Yil University VAN / TURKEY
Al-Raghib al-Isfahani,  Abul-Qasim Husayn ibn Muhammad Al- Mufradat fi gharib al-Qur'ân, (Beirut: Dâr al-Ma'rifa), p. 285; At-Tahanawi, Muhammad  Ali b. Ali, Kaşşâfu Istılahati Al-Fünûn, (Beirut- Lübnan: Dâr Al-Kütub Al-İlmiyya, 1998), 3: 76; Qurtubi, Abu Abdillah Muhammad ibn Ahmad, Al-Jâmi lî-ahkâm al-Qur'ân, (Beirut: Dâr Al-Kütub Al-İlmiyye, 1988),, 8: 159
2  Muslim, Siyam, 159; Abu Dawud, Sawm, 74, 75; At'ima, 1; Tirmizî, Sawm, 63; Nasaî, Siyam, 51, Ibn Maca, Siyam, 47: Darimî, Sawm, 31; Muwatta,Hacc, 137: Ahmad b. Hanbal, Musned, 3: 242, 477, 489, 507, 5: 29; Look to Reshit Rıza, Al-Manar, (Beirut: Dar Al-Ma'rifa),  2:25
3 Al-Isfahanî, Ibid, p. 285,
4 Muhammad, Iqbal, The Reconstruction of religious thought in Islam, (Lahor: Shaikh Muhammad Ashraf, 1982), p.  85
5  Mustafa, Koc,  Ergenlik doneminde dua ve ibadet algılarının ruh saglıgına etkileri uzerinde bir alan araştırması, SUIFD, Sakarya, 2004, X. 118-119; Muhammad Uthman, Najati, Al-Qur'an wa ilm  an-nafs, (Dar Aş-Şurûk, 1997), p. 284-285
6  James, William, Essays on faith and morals (Selected by Ralph Barton Perry),  (Meridian Books , The World Publishing Company, 1962),  p. 235
7  Alexis, Carrel, Reflections of life / Hayat hakkında düşünceler (Was translataed to Turkish Language by. Cahit Begenç), (Ministiry of culture and tourism publishing house, 1988), p. 111
8 Iqbal, Ibid, p. 85
9 Whitall, Perry,  A Treasury of traditional wisdom (From Schoun: Perspectives spiritualise, p. 170), (London, George Allen and Unwin LTD, 1971),  p. 520
10  Whitall, Perry,  A Treasury of traditional wisdom (From Schoun: Perspectives spiritualise, p. 170), (London, George Allen and Unwin LTD, 1971),  p. 521
11 E. Lumbard, Joseph, The Function of dhikrullah in sufi psychology (/Knowledge is Light, (Was edited by Zailan Moris), (ABC Internatiolanal Group, 1999),  p. 259
12  Ibn Sina, Abu Ali, al-Husayn b. Ali, Ahwalu an-nafs, (Isa Al-Babi Al-Halabi, 1952), p 198
13 Ghazalî, Kimyai saadat, (Beirut: Dar Al-Kutub Al-Ilmıyya), p.138
14  E. Lumbard, Ibid, p. 258
15 Said, Nursi, Mektubat / Letters ( translated to English language  by: Sukran Vahide), (Sozler publishing house, 2001), p. 519
16 Bilal was a friend of Prophet Muhammad (p.u.h.). When come in the time of prayer he was calling people to the pray by  Azan (invitation of the prayer)
17  Abu Dawud, Sunann / Adab 4985, 4986; Ahmed b. Hanbel, Ibid, 5: 364
18 Perry, Ibid,  p. 522
19 Razi, Fakhr al-Din, Al-Tafsir al-kabir, (Tahran: Dâr al-kütub Al-İlm 7: 40
20 Razi, Ibıd, 10:  685
21  Look. Muhammad Uthman, Najati, Ad-Dirasat an-nafsiyya inda'l-Muslimin, (Dar Al-Suruk, 1993), p. 30
22, Frager,  Heart, Self and soul / Kalp, nafs wa ruh (Was translated to Turkish Language by Ibrahim Kapaklikaya), (Gelenek publishing house, 2003) , p. 65
23 For example we believe the inspiration has been gets from the contact with Devine world. However according to psychologist's insight / inspiration is the relatively sudden perception of relationships which result in the prompt solution of a problem. Insight is often a relatively sudden perception which follows a period of little or no apparent progress; it is based on previous experience. Actually, the perception may appease somewhat gradually in the sense that an individual may see a number of minor relationships before he has the final insight into the problem. Look. Engle, T.L., Psychology its principles and  applications (Fourth Edition), (New York: Edited by. Harcourt, Brace and World, Inc., No date),  p. 69
24  Jung, C.G., Psychology and Religion West and East, (Translated by R. F. C. Hull), (Pantheon Books), p. 17
25  By this way experience, man can be calm. Saymour Boorstein says that “The anxiety that often characterizes neurotic illness and the lack of self-awareness of the genesis of one's problems are two symptoms of neurosis that are often, in my experience, helped by meditation practice. Concentration practices, fixing the attention on a single object (word, mantra, inner sound, inner vision, a particular body sensation such as breathing), have both a physiologically and an emotionally calming effect. As a person's anxiety level is reduced, his or her ability to be introspective and to tolerate the re-emergence of repressed (often frightening) material increases”. Boorstein, M.D., Seymour, Clinical studies in transpersonal psychotherapy, (Was edited by. State University of New York Press), Foreword,  p. 36
26 Boorstein, M.D., Seymour, Clinical studies in transpersonal psychotherapy, (Was edited by. State University of New York Press), p. X-XI; Frager,Ibid, p. 464
27  Iqbal,  Ibid, p. 37-38, 40
28  Iqbal, Ibid, p. 17
29 Allahbakhsh, K. Brohi,  The  Spiritual dimension of prayer, p. 134
30 Syed Ali, Ashraf, The Inner meaning of the Islamic rites: Prayer, pilgrimage, fasting, jihad,(No Date), p.118, 112

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