Prayer And Health!
“Successful indeed are the believers* Those who offer their prayers with all solemnity and full submissiveness” (Al Mu’iminun).
As everyone knows the basic form of worship in our religion is prayer (salah or namaz) there are other ways of worship but for the purpose of the verse we shall focus on salah.
Prayer is the thanks and supplication of the servant to Allah, The prayer has many great psychological effects, as when the believer complete prayer solemnity, it will help him to concentrate and contemplate which is the most important way for tension and nervous exhaustion relief. Additionally, praying is an effective treatment for anger, rashness and hastiness because it teaches the believer how to be calm and obedient to Allah, the Exalted with patience and modesty.
These things, positively affect the neuraxis and functions of the heart as it regulates heartbeats and blood flow. Also praying helps the believer to remove all the inner deposits from depression, worry, fears, psychological emotions as they all removed as soon as the believer remember that he is in the hands of the Almighty and that He will not abandon him as long as he worships him faithfully.
The branch of science that passes under the name of “psychology” the science of the psyche, in the western scientific community is not in fact concerned with the Soul or ruh, from the stand point of islamic sciences this field in investigating our behaviour is actually attempting a description of the “self” or nafs.
The effect of spirituality on health is an area of active research right now. Besides being studied by physicians, it is studied by psychologists and other professionals. The studies tend to fall into 3 major areas: mortality, coping, and recovery.
Some observational studies suggest that people who have regular spiritual practices tend to live longer. Another study points to a possible mechanism: interleukin (IL)-6. Increased levels of IL-6 are associated with an increased incidence of disease. A research study involving 1700 older adults showed that those who attended church were half as likely to have elevated levels of IL-6. The authors hypothesized that religious commitment may improve stress control by offering better coping mechanisms, richer social support, and the strength of personal values and worldview.
Patients who are spiritual may utilize their beliefs in coping with illness, pain, and life stresses. Some studies indicate that those who are spiritual tend to have a more positive outlook and a better quality of life. For example, patients with advanced cancer who found comfort from their religious and spiritual beliefs were more satisfied with their lives, were happier, and had less pain. Spirituality is an essential part of the “existential domain” measured in quality-of-life scores. Positive reports on those measures—a meaningful personal existence, fulfillment of life goals, and a feeling that life to that point had been worthwhile— correlated with a good quality of life for patients with advanced disease.
Some studies have also looked at the role of spirituality regarding pain. One study showed that spiritual well-being was related to the ability to enjoy life even in the midst of symptoms, including pain. This suggests that spirituality may be an important clinical target. Results of a pain questionnaire distributed by the American Pain Society to hospitalized patients showed that personal prayer was the most commonly used nondrug method of controlling pain: 76% of the patients made use of it. In this study, prayer as a method of pain management was used more frequently than intravenous pain medication (66%), pain injections (62%), relaxation (33%), touch (19%), and massage (9%). Pain medication is very important and should be used, but it is worthwhile to consider other ways to deal with pain as well.
Research affirms that faith is very necessary for the existence of human beings, because it makes them more adapted to fate and answers the questions raised by the brain. It was found that (the Buddhist praying) reduces blood pressure, eliminates depression and anxiety and reduces heart pulse. Therefore, and according to a number of Western researchers, to be religious is better than being atheist for the good of humanity to be safe and sound.
As Dr Andrew Nioberg confirms, a specialist in neuroscience, on his website that believing that there is God of the whole universe is absolutely necessary for a psychological and physical healthiness. In his book, “How God changes your Brain,” written by him and a group of researchers and also achieved significant sales in America, Newberg says: ‘the deeper you believe in the Creator, the better your brain will be!
Worshiping and meditating for 12 minutes a day, delays the diseases of aging and reduces stress and anxiety. The submission, worship and praying practices give the human being a sense of peace more love and compassion, while atheism, anger and protest against fate continuously damage the brain.
Our entire personality structure is the end product of the combination of our body soul and heart with the self or nafs playing a dominant role. What we have to bear in mind at present is the fact that by mental health, we mean not the traditional concept of the soul but our self orientated (selfish) personality.
Majority of human beings in our age of the 21st century have fallen into the cogwheels of mechanical life under the influence of atheistic and materialistic philosophies, and many of them have lost their mental composure, as a result, unhappiness has become the norm among human beings. The result is that majority of people have fallen under the following impasses and experience suffering.
1) People are in the grip of psychosomatic illnesses, which are the reflection of mental distress on the body, the damage inflicted by worries on the endocrine system give rise to stomach ulcers, cardiovascular illnesses and various digestive disorders.
The role of stress and mental distress is evident even in the case of cancer considered to be the sickness of our age.
The majority of humans therefore suffer at the mercy of material ailments due solely to mental disturbances.
2) Fifth of mankind has been forced into alcoholism and drugs by mental disorders.
3) Psychic distress has become the rule in developed countries, nowadays people carry “happy pills” which are supposed to be less harmful among sedative poisons.
4) Statistics compiled in the west indicate that the younger generations, a full 30 percent of them are on the brink of mental instability, and mental illness is easily precipitated.
Ok so Let us now investigate what kind of salvation prayer bestows upon us.. We stand in the presence of Allah promise that we shall leave all troubles and worldly concerns behind and pronounce the beginning call, we dismiss the worries of the world for at least ten minutes we then recite the praise that is to say we praise Allah swt’s greatness (Allah hu akbar) and then come to the opening chapter.
The opening chapter Al Fatiha this is a wonderful balm that erases the anxiety and errors of a man’s inner world, no matter how hopeless the situation of a man Al Fatiha is capable of rescuing him from his impasse and placing him on the straight path.
1) Praise belongs to Allah the lord of the worlds, with this we reflect all praise belongs to Allah and we thank him and praise him.
2) All compassionate and all Merciful, He has not only given life to all creatures through his pity and love (compassion) but the thanks giving human becomes the recipient of his special mercy and love and forgiveness.
3) He is the master of the day of the resurrection, of the day of judgment… this makes us remember he is the master and that we will be called to account and because of this …
4) You only we worship you only do we pray for help.
5) Guide us to your straight path… we are imploring Allah swt to guide us to the straight path.
6) The path of those that you show favour.
7) Not of those who incur your wrath nor of those who go astray..
Now this verse in sha allah will save a person from calamities that may befall him in the worldly life he who is not the slave of money, power or profit will assuredly be freed and delivered from sundry blind alleys, he who only prays to Allah swt for help will not be grieved if something goes wrong he will not torment himself when faced with difficulty he will strive with all his power and leave the outcome Allah.
Whoever does the prayer 40 times a day with continual rhythm submissiveness and all solemnity will in sha Allah attain liberation.
When regarding prayer collectively it brings to every aspect of our lives the necessity to avoid ethical errors and the like and the habit of the Wudhu or washup which provides material and spiritual vigour as we have discussed previously, you will behold how salvation and happiness permanently enters our lives.
Can any illness of the mind and heart survive in a person who recites the marvellous Al fatiha in divine presence of Allah 40 times a day??
All praise is due to Allah the most merciful and compassionate oh Allah guide us to the straight path of those you show favour not of those who incur your wrath nor of those who go astray. Ameen