Human Instinct

Hazrat Mufti Ebrahim Salejee (Daamat Barakaatuhu) mentioned:

Allah Ta‘ala states in the Quraan Majeed:

فَأَقِمْ وَجْهَكَ لِلدِّينِ حَنِيفًا ۚ فِطْرَتَ ٱللَّـهِ ٱلَّتِى فَطَرَ ٱلنَّاسَ عَلَيْهَا

“(Turn away from every path and) keep your face erect and firm for that deen which is absolutely straight and correct. This is the fitrat (natural disposition) upon which Allah Ta‘ala has created mankind.”

Allah Ta‘ala speaks of two aspects in this aayat. The first is to remain firm and straight on deen. This is the test for man, as he has been created with feelings. A pillar can remain firm and straight and will not be affected by various conditions. However, a human has feelings and gets affected with surrounding conditions.

The other aspect that Allah Ta‘ala speaks of in this aayat is that of fitrat. Fitrat could be translated as ‘natural disposition’ or ‘instinct’. Every creation has a fitrat. We study the fitrat (instinct) of ants, honey bees, and many other creations, but what about the fitrat of man. As long as everything remains within the demands of its natural characteristic and instinct then it seems pleasant.

Hazrat Shah Waliyyullah Saahib (rahmatullahi ‘alaih), who was one of the greatest Ulama and philosophers in the past three centuries, explains that man’s fitrat is to seek his Creator and understand who He is. Once a person identifies his Creator, then the very next question is that how do I appreciate Him? What must I do to please Him?

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