The Ego - Exposing The False Self

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The False Self has many names... The I, The Ego, The Nafs, The Self.

Allah (swt) says in the Holy Quran about the Nafs swearing by the Sun...

{In the name of the merciful and compassionate God.
By the sun and its noonday brightness!
And the moon when it follows him!
And the day when it displays him!
And the night when it covers him!
And the heaven and what built it!
And the earth and what spread it!
And the soul and what fashioned it,
and taught it its sin and its piety!
Prosperous is he who purifies it!
And disappointed is he who corrupts it!...}

And Imam Ali (as) said:
"The body is purified by water. Ego by tears. Intellect is purified by knowledge. And the soul is purified with love." -

Quotes from Imam Ahmed Al-Hassan (as) in relation to the Ego

I warn you from the I

"Imam Ahmed al Hassan a.s. - The Ego" from the Black Banners of the East Satellite Station, 31.12.2017

Translation of a post by احمد احمد28.07.2016 "I warn you from the I. Beware of the I, beware of it! The I..Every time you feel that you are better than others, remember that Allah The Exalted is al'Azeem, alJabbar, alMutakabir (The Great, The Compeller, The Supreme). You are nothing to be mentioned in this life. And this is the reality". A saying by Sayyed Ahmed alHassan a.s. the leader of the blessed Black Banners of the East.

If you knew the Nafs

Translation of a post by احمد احمد:v
"If you knew the nafs/self which you love, you wouldn't come close to it. I will give you something similiar to describe it and you shall understand.
The Nafs which you love is like a toilet, well formed by human hands, beautiful and clean on the apparent/outside, and impure on the inside. Would you be able to extend your head into a toilet [made of] gold, inlaid with jewelry?
How can you love it then?"
An advice from the holy Mawla Ahmed Al-Hassan a.s, leader of the Black Banners of the East - 10.07.2016

Quotes from the book of Monotheisim

In the "Book of Monotheism" which mention the Ego or the "I" explicitly...

  • "...He deals with Mercy, or otherwise, the punishments would come forth upon the creation who remembers himself (his ego) and is negligent of his Lord."
  • "If He is the one whom is sought and turned to in needs, and those who turn to and seek and approach Him are disobedient short-comers and the best of them would [still] look to his own self (his I or ego) even if from a hidden angle... If even Muhammad (pbuhaf), the best of the Creation of Allah (swt), needed Mercy in facing Allah (swt), thus The Glorified The Exalted came to Him by His saying: (The Glorious, the Holy, I am the Lord of the angels and the Spirit. My mercy exceeds/precedes My wrath), so the Messenger of Allah (pbuhaf) said: ([O Allah], I beg Your forgiveness, I beg Your forgiveness)."
  • "... you may say that Muhammad (pbuh & his progeny) is Light, however, within him there is darkness and it is the Ego and the “I”, and otherwise, there would not remain for Muhammad a name nor [would there remain] an image, and there would not remain except Allah, the One, the Powerful, the Glorious, the Almighty. [...] Therefore, Muhammad (pbuh & his progeny), even when he was in the highest levels of perfection possible for creation [to reach], and Muhammad (pbuh & his progeny) was the image of Allah and carried the attributes of Godhood amongst the creation, in order to make Allah, the Glorious, known amongst the creation. Consequently, the creation looks upon him in order that he completes them and fulfills their shortcomings. However, Muhammad (pbuh & his progeny) from another face [aspect] is poor (and in need of Allah) in regards to Allah, the Glorious, the Almighty, for he is a servant from among the servants of Allah {whose oil would almost glow even if untouched by fire. Light upon light.} {The Holy Qur’an Surat An-Nūr (The Light): 35}. He almost glows from his own self, [but] not that he actually glows from his own self, that even Ibrahim (Abraham) (pbuh), and he was from amongst the greatest of the Messengers, when he saw the Kingdom of Heaven, he thought that the description of Muhammad (pbuh & his progeny) by the description of Godhood was Absolute Godhood. And he thought that the Lordship of Muhammad (pbuh & his progeny) was Absolute Lordship, then Allah, the Glorious, the Almighty, blessed Abraham (pbuh) and revealed to him the weakness of Muhammad (pbuh & his progeny) and his return to the Ego and the “I”.
  • "Indeed Allah is Light with no Darkness in it, and all the worlds of Creation is Light mixed with Darkness and beings which have appeared by the Manifestation of His Light (swt) in the Darknesses. And therefore, it is not possible that one considers that Allah has come in a created being or appeared in a created being a complete appearance in the Worlds of Creation – as they claim with Jesus and the Holy Spirit - ; because [if this was the case then] this means that [the worlds of creation] would not remain, rather, it would disintegrate/disappear and what remains would be Light which has no darkness in it, meaning, that no Creation would remain, rather, only Allah (swt) remains, and He is Light with no darkness in it. And for that reason we have said and repeated over and over that Muhammad flaps between The Divine and between the “I” and humanity/state of being Human. And I have confirmed this in order that no deluded person imagines that Allah – who is Light with no Darkness in it – comes in the Worlds of Creation, He is far Exalted and Greater than that. And the matter is clear and obvious, for the meaning of (the appearance of Light which has no darkness in it in the World of Creation a complete appearance) is its disappearance/disintegration and extinction, and remains for it neither a name nor a description nor a meaning, rather, no one and nothing remains except Allah The Light which has no Darkness in it, Far Greater and Exalted is He."

Quote from the book "The Allegories"

Question 10: What is the meaning of Imam Ali’s pbuh saying:
"If the veil was revealed to me, I would not have increased in certitude"?

[...] the Prince of Believers pbuh is talking about a veil which has concealed the Divinity from him. He is talking about a veil which if revealed to Ali pbuh, Ali pbuh would not remain, and none remains save Allah, the One the Conquerer. Ali (pbuh) considers the presence of this veil to be a great guilt, therefore he says,
"O lord, I have done myself injustice by considering it [myself ], so it is damned if You do not forgive it." - A part of the dua of Shaban by the Prince of Believers Ali (pbuh), Bihar Al-Anwar Vol. 91 page 97

Rather the Quran itself considers it a great guilt which does not part from a human unless the clear opening happens, and the human becomes non-existent at moments, and returns to existence at other moments; this is in order for the human to maintain his humanity, and for the created to maintain his place as a servant. Allah (swt) said,

{We have bestowed upon you a clear opening. So that Allah Forgives the guilt of your past and future.} - The Quran 48:1–2

- The Allegories Volume 1, 1rst Edition

Productions from the Black Banners of the East Satellite Station about the Ego

The self is the product of our deeds. We make it good or we make it evil.
It is something that you feel but you can not see it... Have you ever felt it?
Have you ever felt that there is something that constantly strives to make you unhappy?

This episode of the series "Human" will guide you through the depth of yourself, helping you discover who you are and who you are not.

"The Ego - Exposing Your False Self" from the Black Banners of the East Satellite Station, 14.01.2018

Ahadith about the Ego

75 Soldiers of Ignorance and Mind

Definately everyone should read this amazing ahadith from Imam Hussayn (as) about the the Mind and its soldiers, and know the Ignorance and its soldiers on the page"75 Soldiers of Ignorance and Mind".

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Further ahadith

From the chapter of "Jihad an-Nafs" in "Wasail al-Shi’a" of Shaykh Hurr al-Amili:
Chapter 1: The Divine Obligation to Combat the Self

  • Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said that the Holy Prophet [saws] dispatched his soldiers to battle to fight the enemy and, upon their triumphant return, said; “Greetings on those who have successfully carried out the "Minor Combat" (jihad al-asghar), but have yet to engage themselves in the "Greater Combat".” He was asked: “O Prophet of Allah [sWT]! What is the "Greater Combat"? ” to which he replied: “Combat with the self ”. al-Kafi v.2, p. 12, no. 3., Similar Amali al-Saduq p. 377, no. 8; Ma’ni al-Akhbar, p.160, no.1
  • Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: "Take responsibility for your self, for if you do not, nobody else will." al-Kafi v.2, p. 12, no. 3.
  • Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said to a man : “Indeed you have been made the doctor of your self, the ailment has been made manifest to you, you know the marvel of health and have been shown the cure, and yet look at how you treat your soul!” al-Kafi v. 2, p. 329, no.6
  • Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] addressed a man, saying: “Consider your heart to be a kind friend and a dutiful son, and your knowledge a father whom you can follow, and your self (nafs) an enemy that you fight and your wealth a destitute woman whom you would repel.” al-Kafi v. 2, p. 329, no.7; al-Faqih, v.4, p.294, no.889
  • Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said: “He who does not have a preaching heart, a reproaching self and a guiding friend will be easily overcome his enemy.” al-Faqih, v.4, p.287, no.862
  • Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] narrated on the authority of the Imams before him, that the Holy Prophet [saws], in his advice to Imam ‘Ali [a], said: “O ‘Ali, the best thing about self-struggle is when a person wakes up with no desire to wrong anyone.” al-Faqih, v.4, p.254, no.821
  • Imam Ja'far al-Sadiq [a] said : “He who has complete control over himself (nafs), when he desires something as well as when he fears something, when he is angry as well as when he is pleased, Allah [sWT] prohibits the Fire of Hell from touching his body.” al-Faqih, v.4, p.286, no.856, Thawab al-A’mal, p. 192, no. 1.
  • Imam ‘Ali Amir al-Mu’minin [a] said: “The warrior is the one who combats his inner self.” Al-Majazat al-Nabawiyyah, p. 201, no. 157
  • He has made it incumbent upon the face to bow down in prostration to Him in the night and in the day at prayer times, about which He has said: “O you who believe! Bow down and prostrate yourselves and serve your Lord, and do good that you may succeed.” Q.22:77. This is joint duty on the face as well as the hands and the feet, for He has said in another verse: “And that the parts of prostration (Masjids) are Allah’s, so call not upon anyone with Allah.” Q.72:18 until prophet Muhammad [saws] concluded, saying: “He who meets Allah, having guarding his limbs such that every single limb fulfilled that which Allah made incumbent upon it, he will meet Allah, Mighty and Exalted, with a complete faith and will be among the people of Paradise. He who has been treacherous with any of his limbs or transgressed in what Allah, Mighty and Exalted, commanded him, he will meet Allah with a deficient faith. Believers shall enter Paradise as a result of having completed their faith, and transgressors will enter Hell as a result of their deficient faith.” (al-Kafi, V. 2, p.28, no. 1)
  • In another narration Imam Muhammad al-Baqir [a] said, regarding this verse, "Say good to the people - better than what you would want them to say to you - for surely, Allah hates the cursing, insulting, and slandering of the believers. The obscene, intruding questioner. (Tafseer al-Ayyashi.)
  • Imam ‘Ali Zain Al-Abideen [a] said: “You have no right to speak according to your whim, as Allah has said: “And do not follow that of which you have no knowledge” Q.17:36, nor to listen to whatever you fancy, as He has said: “Surely the ears and the eyes and the heart, all of these shall be questioned about that” Q.17:36
  • Imam ‘Ali Zain Al-‘Abidiee [a] said: “The greatest right of God against you is that you worship Him without associating anything with Him. When you do that with sincerity (ikhlas), He has made it binding upon Himself to give you sufficiency in the affair of this world and the next.”
  • “The right of your soul (nafs) against you is that you employ it in obeying God; then you deliver to your tongue its right, to your hearing its right, to your sight its right, to your hand its right, to your leg its right, to your stomach its right, to your private parts their right, and you seek help from God in all these.”
  • “The right of the tongue is that you consider it too noble for obscenity, accustom it to the good, refrain from any meddling in which there is nothing to be gained, express kindness to the people, and speak well concerning them.”
  • “The right of hearing is to keep it pure from listening to backbiting (ghiba) and listening to that to which it is unlawful to listen.”
  • “The right of sight is that you lower it before everything that is unlawful to you, and that you take heed when you look at anything.”
  • “The right of your hand is that you stretch it not toward that which is unlawful to you.”
  • “The right of your two legs is that you walk not with them toward that which is unlawful to you. You have no escape from standing upon the narrow bridge (Al-Siraat) over the Hell, so you should see to it that your legs do not slip and cause you to fall into the Fire.”
  • “The right of your stomach is that you make it not into a container for that, which is unlawful to you and you eat no more than your fill (shib').”
  • “The right of your private part (farj) is that you protect it from fornication and guard it against being exposed.”
  • “The right of your ritual prayer (Salaat) is that you know that it is an audience before God and that through it you are standing before Him. When you know this, then you will stand (before Him) as one who is lowly, abased, fearful, trembling, beseeching Him, hopeful, and you will magnify Him through stillness and dignity. You will approach the prayer with your heart and you will perform it according to its bounds and its rights.”
  • “The right of the Hajj is that you know it is an arrival before your Lord and a flight to Him from your sins. Through it, your repentance is accepted and you perform an obligation made incumbent upon you by God.”
  • “The right of fasting is that you know it is a veil that God has set up over your tongue, your hearing, your sight, your stomach, and your private part to protect you from the Fire. If you abandon the fast, you will have torn God's protective covering away from yourself.”
  • “The right of charity (Sadaqa) is that you know it is a deposit with your Lord, for which you will have no need for witnesses. If you deposit it in secret, you will be more confident of it (the returns) than if you deposit it in public. You should know that it repels afflictions and illnesses from you in this world and it will repel the Fire from you in the next world.”
  • “The right of the offering (Hadiya) is that through it you desire God and you do not desire His creation; through it you desire only the exposure of your soul to God's Mercy and the deliverance of your soul on the Day you encounter Him.”
  • “The right of the possessor of authority (Sultan) is that you know that God has made you a trial (Fitna) for him. God is testing him through the authority He has given him over you. You should not expose yourself to his displeasure, for thereby you cast yourself by your own hands into destruction and become his partner in his sins when he brings down evil upon you.”
  • “The right of the one who teaches you (sa'is) through knowledge is, by magnifying him, respecting his sessions, listening well to him, and attending to him with devotion. You should not raise your voice to him. You should never answer anyone who asks him (a question) about something, but let him answer. You should not speak to anyone in his session nor speak ill of anyone with him. If anyone ever speaks ill of him in your presence, you should defend him. You should conceal his faults and make manifest his virtues. You should not sit with him in enmity or show hostility toward him in friendship. If you do all of this, God's angels will testify on your behalf that you approached him properly and acquired knowledge from him for God's sake, not for the sake of the people.”
  • “The right of him who teaches and trains you through property is that you should obey him, unless obeying would displease God, for there can be no obedience to a creature when it causes disobedience to God.”
  • “The right of your subjects under your authority is that you should know that they have been made subjects through their weakness and through your strength. Hence, it is incumbent upon you to act with justice toward them and to be like a “compassionate father” toward them. You should forgive them because of their ignorance and not hurry to punish them, and you should thank God for the power, which He has given to you over them.”
  • “The right of your subjects through the knowledge, is that you should know that God made you a caretaker over them because of the knowledge He has given you, and because of His storehouses which He has opened up to you. If you do well in teaching the people, not treating them roughly or annoying them, then God will increase His bounties to you. However, if you withhold your knowledge from people or treat them roughly when they come to you seeking knowledge from you, then it will be God's right to deprive you of that knowledge and its splendor, and to make you fall from your place in people's hearts.”
  • “The right of your wife (zawja) is that you know that God has made her repose and a comfort for you; you should know that she is God's favour toward you, so you should honor her and treat her gently. Though her right toward you is more incumbent, you must treat her with compassion, since she is your prisoner (asir) whom you feed and clothe. If she acts ignorant, you should pardon her.”
  • “The right of your slave (mamluk) is that you should know that he is the creature of your Lord, the son of your father and mother (Adam and Eve), and your flesh and blood. You own him, but you did not make him; God made him. You did not create any one of his limbs, nor do you provide him with his sustenance; on the contrary, God gives you the sufficiency for his sustenance. Then He subjugated him to you, entrusted him to you, and deposited him with you so that you may be safeguarded by the goodness you give to him. So act well toward him, just as God has acted well toward you. If you dislike him, replace him, but do not torment a creature of God. And there is no strength save in God.”
  • “The right of your mother is that you know that she carried you where no one carries anyone, gave to you of the fruit of her heart that which no one gives to anyone, and protected you with all her organs. She did not care if she went hungry as long as you ate, if she was thirsty as long as you drank, if she was deprived as long as you were clothed, if she was in the sun as long as you were in the shade. She gave up sleep for your sake; she protected you from heat and cold, all in order that you might belong to her. You will not be able to show her gratitude, unless through God's help and giving success.”
  • “The right of your father is that you know that he is your root (Nourisher). Without him, you would not be (in existence). Whenever you see anything in yourself that pleases you, know that your father is the root of its blessing upon you. So praise God and thank Him in due measure. And there is no strength save in God.”
  • “The right of your child is that you should know that he is from you and will be ascribed to you through his/ her good and evil, in the immediate affairs of this world. You are responsible for what has been entrusted to you, such as educating him/ her in good conduct (husn al-adab), pointing him in the direction of his Lord, and helping him to obey Him. So act toward him as one who knows that he will be rewarded for doing good to him and will be punished for evildoing.”
  • “The right of your brother is that you know that he is your hand, your might and your strength. Take him not as a weapon with which to disobey God, nor as equipment with which to wrong God's creatures. Do not neglect to help him against his enemy or to give him good counsel. If he obeys God, well and good, if not, you should honor God more than him. And there is no strength save in God.”
  • “The right of your master (Mawla) who has favored you [by freeing you from slavery] is that you know that he has spent his property for you and brought you out of the abasement and estrangement of bondage to the exaltation and comfort of freedom. He has freed you from the captivity of possession and loosened the bonds of slavery from you. He has brought you out of prison, given you ownership of yourself, and given you leisure to worship your Lord. You should know that he is the closest of God's creatures to you in your life and your death and that aiding him with your life and what he needs from you is incumbent upon you. And there is no strength save in God.”
  • “The right of the slave (mawla) whom you have favored [by freeing him] is that you know that God has made your freeing him a means of nearness to Him and a veil against the Fire. Your immediate reward is to inherit from him, if he does not have any maternal relatives, by way of compensation, what you have spent on him, and your ultimate reward is the Garden.”
  • “The right of him who does a kindly act (dhu l-ma'ruf) toward you is that you thank him and mention his kindness; you reward him with beautiful words and you supplicate for him sincerely in that which is between you and God. If you do that, you have thanked him secretly and openly. Then, if you are able to repay him some day, you repay him.”
  • “The right of the Muezzin is that you know that he is reminding you of your Lord, calling you to your good fortune, and helping you to accomplish what God has made obligatory upon you. So thank him for that just as you thank one who does good to you.”
  • “The right of your imam in your ritual prayer is that you know that he has taken on the role of mediator between you and your Lord. He speaks for you, but you do not speak for him; he supplicates for you, but you do not supplicate for him. He has spared you the terror of standing before God. If he performs the prayer imperfectly, that belongs to him and not to you; but if he performs it perfectly, you are his partner, and he has no excellence over you. So protect yourself through him, protect your prayer through his prayer, and thank him in that measure.”
  • “The right of your sitting companion (Jalees) is that you treat him mildly, show fairness toward him while vying with him in discourse, and do not stand up from sitting with him without his permission. But it is permissible for him who sits with you to leave without asking your permission. You should forget his slips and remember his good qualities, and you should tell nothing about him but good.”
  • “The right of your neighbor (Jar) is that you guard him when he is absent, honor him when he is present, and aid him when he is wronged. You do not pursue anything of his that is shameful; if you know of any evil from him, you conceal it. If you know that he will accept your counsel, you counsel him in that which is between him and you. You do not forsake him in difficulty, you release him from his stumble, you forgive his mistake, and you associate with him generously. And there is no strength save in God.”
  • “The right of the companion (sahib) is that you act as his companion with bounty and in fairness. You honor him as he honors you and you do not let him be the first to act with generosity. If he is the first, you repay him. You wish for him as he wishes for you and you dissuade him from any act of disobedience (to God) that he might be tempted. Be a mercy for him, not a (source of) chastisement. And there is no strength save in God.”
  • “The right of the partner (sharik) is that if he should be absent, you suffice him in his affairs, and if he should be present, you show regard for him. You make no decision without his consent, and you do nothing on the basis of your own opinion, but you exchange views with him. You guard his property for him, and you do not betray him in his major or minor affairs, for God's hand is above the hands of two partners, as long as they do not betray each other. And there is no strength save in God.”
  • “The right of your property (Maal) is that you take from it only what is lawful and you spend it only in what is proper. Through it, you should not prefer above yourself those who will not praise you. You should act with it in obedience to your Lord and not be miserly with it, lest you fall back into regret and remorse while suffering the ill consequence. And there is no strength save in God.”
  • “The right of him to whom you owe a debt (al-gharim alladhi yutalibuka) is that, if you have the means, you pay him back, and if you are in straitened circumstances, you satisfy him with good words and you send him away with gentleness.”
  • “The right of the associate (khalit) is that you neither mislead him, nor act dishonestly toward him, nor deceive him, and you fear God in his affair.”
  • “The right of the adversary (khasm) who has a claim against you is that, if what he claims against you is true, you give witness to it against yourself. You do not wrong him and you give him his full due. If what he claims against you is false, you act with kindness toward him and you show nothing in his affair other than kindness; you do not displease your Lord in his affair. And there is no strength save in God.”
  • “The right of the adversary against whom you have a claim is that, if your claim against him is true, you maintain politeness and moderation in speaking to him and you do not deny his right. If your claim is false, you fear God, repent to Him, and abandon your claim.”
  • “The right of him who asks you for advice (mustashir) is that, if you concur that he has a correct opinion, you advise him to follow it, and if you are not able to consider (i.e. unable to help him), then you direct him to someone who will.”
  • “The right of him whom you ask for advice (mushir) is that you do not make accusations against him for an opinion that does not conform to your own opinion. If it conforms to it, you praise God.”
  • “The right of him who asks your counsel (mustansih) is that you give him your counsel, but you conduct yourself toward him with compassion and kindness.”
  • “The right of your counselor (naasih) is that you act gently toward him and listen to him. If he presents you with the right course (of action), you praise God, but if he does not agree with you, you show compassion toward him and make no accusations against him; you consider him to have made a mistake, and you do not take him to task for that, unless he should be deserving of accusation. Then attach no more importance to his affair. And there is no strength save in God.”
  • “The right of him who is older than you (kabir) is that you show reverence toward him because of his age and you honor him because he entered Islam before you. You avoid confronting him in a dispute, you do not take precedence over him, you do not stay ahead of him (while walking), and you do not consider him foolish. If he should act foolishly toward you, you put up with him and you honor him because of the right of Islam and the respect that is due.”
  • “The right of him who is younger (saghir) is that you show compassion toward him through teaching him, pardoning him, covering his faults, kindness toward him, and helping him.”
  • “The right of him who asks (sa'il) from you is that you give to him in the measure of his need.”
  • “The right of him from whom you ask is that you accept from him with gratitude and recognition of the bounty if he gives, and you accept his excuse if he withholds.”
  • “The right of him through whom God makes you happy (surur) is that you first praise God, and then you thank the person.”
  • “The right of him who does evil to you is that you pardon him. But if you know that your pardon will harm him, you defend yourself. God says: “whosoever defends himself after he has been wronged - against them there is no way (to blame).” (Q.42:41).”
  • “The right of the people of your creed (Millat) is your harboring safety for them, showing compassion toward them, kindness toward their evildoers (misdeeds), treating them with friendliness, seeking their well-being, thanking their good-doers (good deeds), and keeping harm away from them. You should love for them what you love for yourself and dislike for them what you dislike for yourself. Their old men stand in the place of your father, their youths in the place of your brothers, their old women in the place of your mother, and their young ones in the place of your children.
  • “The right of the people (Non-Muslim) under the protection [of Islam] (dhimma) is that you accept from them what God has accepted from them and you do no wrong to them as long as they fulfil God's covenant.” - (al-Faqih, v. 2, p. 376, no. 1626 also found in al-Majalis- Amali al-Saduq, p. 301, no. 1; al-Khisal, p. 564, no. 1; Tuhaf al-‘Uqul, p.256; Makarim al-Akhlaq, p. 419)
  • Imam ‘Ali Zain Al -‘Abideen [a] said: “Indeed, the believer is one who, when he is happy, is not led by his happiness to commit any wrong or indecent act, and if he is angered, is not diverted from telling the truth by his anger, and, when he is empowered, is not led by his power to transgress against that which does not rightfully belong to him.” (al-Kafi v.2, p.184, no.13)