The Alchemy of Happiness by Imam Al-Ghazali.
A guide to transform man from baseness to purity:
‘This transformation occurs through increasing knowledge of God, but before you can begin to know God, you must know yourself.
This starts with knowing the human being’s two distinct components; the body and the spiritual heart.
There are 5 steps to understanding the heart:
1. Recognise it’s existence.
2. The heart works to seek happiness through knowledge of God, it acquires this knowledge through knowledge of God’s creation.
3. The body is a kingdom and the organs and limbs are its workers. Appetite is the tax collector, anger is the police-man, intellect is the chief minister and the heart is King. The body is in a constant spiritual struggle between being held captive by anger and appetite and using them as a mount and weapon to attain spiritual fulfillment. If the heart acts at the advice of the intellect and keeps appetite and anger in control, the path to happiness will be made accessible. But if intellect becomes the prisoner of anger and appetite, the kingdom will become desolate and the heart will be destroyed.
4.Apetite and anger were created to nourish and protect the body, the body was built to bear the senses and it is their servant. The senses were created for intellegence gathering and are it’s servent, intellegence was created as the lamp of the heart through its light. Intellect is the heart’s servant, and the heart was created to witness the beauty of the divine presence.
5.The heart has 5 characteriestics; Predatory, Bestial, Demonic and Angelic. The heart’s nobility is what elevates humans above the rank of beasts.’
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