Avoiding the "Mindless"; Becoming the Mindful

Going through P. Berger's article The Easiest Way to Change People's Behavior I have come across something that has testified some subtle intuitions I happened to intuit. When you have more books on interesting topics around you, scattered everywhere in the room, you can really become mindless shuttling around them: you leave the room for something with one book, you enter and catch eye of another and it's easy to get lost with human temptations. At the end of the day, the seeker of knowledge gets nowhere, exhausted - V. Woolf said it correct, "Reading is dangerous." It's a big risk.

Bigger than which is the problem of crazy 'mindless eating' - much more a feature of moderns than ancients, although the latter had some fat stomachs but they nonetheless cared to disdain the uncontrolled habit of eating, and considered it to be spiritually harmful. Peter berger and Brian Wansink the author of Mindless Eating, however see it as a problem of our enviornment. Who can deny the overwhemling influence our enviornment exerts on us? Just read the following advice of Hazrat Ashraf Ali Thanvi (ra) gave to those who tread the path of piety:

Hakim al=Umma Shaykh Ashraf Ali Thanawi (Allah have mercy on him) said,

If someone fears that if he becomes pious (muttaqi), he will lose out on the worldly pleasures, then I say; “Make the intention that I do not want to become pious. However, for the sake of Allah spend some time in the company of the ‘ulama and the masha’ikh and understand the din. The result of this will be that you will not experience any difficulty in becoming pious. On your own accord you will build up the interest to practice (on the din) and you will experience such joy and pleasure in practicing on the din that you will forget about all the worldly pleasures.”

Advices of Hakim al-Umma: Part Six

The ways to change can be be many, but a change in the conditions we live and breath in is only rudimentary. (Do take the Mindless quiz by Brian Wansink to find out your eating patterns here.)

1 did criticisms:

N.A. said...

Wonderful advice, indeed!

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