On Your Journey to God, Work on Your Heart

(Ibn Ata’s Words of Wisdom: Part 24)

“Every speech comes out with a cover from the heart of the speaker. If God allows a speaker to express himself, people will understand his words and comprehend his gestures.”

This is about the quality of the heart and the impact of the quality of the heart on the quality of the talk.

When Allah opens the doors of understanding for somebody, He will make this person with a good heart that brings good speech.

You find that the Prophets of Allah, as mentioned in the Quran, mention a few words in their lives, but these words change history because they come from a heart that has a particular status with Allah Almighty.

We remember the story of Prophet Ibrahim (peace be upon him) when he built the Ka’bah with his son… And then the angels asked him to call people for Hajj. He said, “How can I call people for Hajj and I am in the desert standing alone with my son?”

Then Allah said:

Call people for hajj and we will take your voice to them. (Quran 22:27)

Allah takes your voice when your heart is good. Abraham (peace be upon him) stood in the middle of the desert and called people for Hajj. Until today, every year, millions of people go to Hajj because of his call.


Because it came from a heart that has a particular status. That’s why the sheikh is saying that, ‘Every speech comes out with a cover from the heart of the speaker.’

So, if Allah has allowed somebody to say the right thing, one word could change history.

A Few Words that Changed History

You look at the companions of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), some of them with very few words changed history.

Abu Bakr, for example, when the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) went to Isra’ and Mi’raj, some of the companions actually left Islam because they could not believe the miracle of him going to Jerusalem and then going up to the heavens. Abu Bakr solved the problem with one word he said, when they asked him:

“If he had said so, then he is truthful.”

This made many people come back to Islam when he showed them the level of faith that he has in his heart that reflected in this very small speech that he has given.

Abu Bakr himself, as well, when he became Caliph after Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), he gave a very short speech, a few words. He said:

“I have been appointed as your leader but I am not the best of you. If I do well, then help me, but if I don’t do well, then correct me.”

That’s all what he said. He didn’t need to speak much because what he is speaking comes from a particular heart with a particular status.

Work More on Your Heart

Therefore, when you work more on your heart, what you say will reach people in a better way. And Allah will allow what you say to fix the ills of this world in a better way when you have a sincere heart that brings this advice out of.

We ask Allah to raise the level of our hearts so that our speech reflect that good status; and would allow us to do good this way and allow our words to be comprehended and our gestures to be understood.

A Journey to God (Folder)


About Dr. Jasser Auda
Jasser Auda is a Professor and Al-Shatibi Chair of Maqasid Studies at the International Peace College South Africa, the Executive Director of the Maqasid Institute, a global think tank based in London, and a Visiting Professor of Islamic Law at Carleton University in Canada. He is a Founding and Board Member of the International Union of Muslim Scholars, Member of the European Council for Fatwa and Research, Fellow of the Islamic Fiqh Academy of India, and General Secretary of Yaqazat Feker, a popular youth organization in Egypt. He has a PhD in the philosophy of Islamic law from University of Wales in the UK, and a PhD in systems analysis from University of Waterloo in Canada. Early in his life, he memorized the Quran and studied Fiqh, Usul and Hadith in the halaqas of Al-Azhar Mosque in Cairo. He previously worked as: Founding Director of the Maqasid Center in the Philosophy of Islamic Law in London; Founding Deputy Director of the Center for Islamic Ethics in Doha; professor at the University of Waterloo in Canada, Alexandria University in Egypt, Islamic University of Novi Pazar in Sanjaq, Qatar Faculty of Islamic Studies, and the American University of Sharjah. He lectured and trained on Islam, its law, spirituality and ethics in dozens of other universities and organizations around the world. He wrote 25 books in Arabic and English, some of which were translated to 25 languages.