031 Physical and mental automation, spiritual affinities
The most pleasant thing for all the living creatures in the divine system is, of course, a physical and social environment according to their will to live. In other words, it is an environment appropriate to their natural qualities. I have witnessed many examples of this, as I have to work with living materials because of my profession. Have you ever observed how the tomato plant grows in 25-26 degree Celsius with rich water and nutrition? Have you ever seen how strong a bacterium grows in an incubator adjusted to 37 degree Celsius, which is the development optimum of it in an appropriate environment? Have you ever witnessed how a person argues excitedly and enthusiastically amongst the people who like to think and generate ideas like him, however he is in fact introverted and quiet?
Unfortunately, it is not always possible for a living thing to live in an appropriate environment. A tomato plant which is adjusted to 25 Celsius degree has to grow in 15 Celsius degree or an asthenic person who loves to think and generate ideas has to live with picnic type people who don't like to think but to run errands. Of course, this situation is a source of stress for those living things.
However, Allah (swt) never leaves helpless the creatures that He created with His mercy; He equipped almost each living creature with physiologic, somatic, and psychological mechanisms in order to adopt their environments.
The most advanced of these mechanisms is "the physical and mental automation" of the living things.
The actions that are repeated for some reasons transform into habits first and then they become passions and addictions. The memories, thoughts, and dreams repeated mentally become delusions and obsessions. However, habits and delusions are normal psychological phenomenon, obsessions and passions are psychological illnesses that must be cured.
I would like to give you a few examples for a better understanding.
If you can drive a car or play a musical instrument, remember the first days you were learning how to do these. You were showing a great attention towards the behavior you intend at first. Every move you wanted to do was so hard that you had to think about them for days. The difficulties might also be in your dreams at nights. However, after you learned, all the difficulties were lost and you began doing many things automatically without thinking. The automation of the repeated actions is called the "creation of habit" or "automation". The habits mean some activities which are realized with suffering and pain because they were hard becoming more enjoyable by automation with our inborn capabilities. If the behaviors, which became habits, are repeated because of pleasure, "passions" and "addictions" occur. It is observed that many young people who used to drive cars become addicted to it in time. You can always see young people who are addicted to music or games. People use the term "be crazy for something" for the addictions, which turn into illnesses.
Although in physical habits the heart is full with ideas and visions related to these actions at first, as the actions become automatic, the heart is relieved because the spiritual occupation is decreased. "Mental habits" are just the opposite of physical habits. Some ideas and memories become "delusions" that has more place as they are repeated. If these repetitions continue, they occupy the heart completely by creating "intellectual obsessions".
Dear Readers, there is also another type of automation, called "conditioning", that results from the repetition of the relations; it is one of the most important factors of spiritual affinities. I want to give you an example on the subject:
Consider the situation of a student in a country far from his own, at a university he is not familiar with. He has a new social environment composed of people he doesn't know. He begins to like good behaviors of some people in this environment. Some "spiritual relations" start towards these people in his heart. They are one-way sympathies.
If one of these people has time to greet or chat for a while, this one-way sympathy transforms into a communication. And the love for his new friend grows bigger. As this "spiritual connection" gets stronger, he has more ideas, dreams, and visions of his new friend.
If he continues the relations with his friend and they go out to eat or do sports or watch football match or see an exhibition together frequently, this "spiritual connection" gets stronger. Now that the lives of these two become the same. Therefore, he frequently remembers his friend.
One of the great Islam scholars, Abdulhakim Arvasi said "The heart is subject to eyes and ears". In other words, the heart will have visions and memories of what ears and eyes are busy with.
If these friends see each other very often then he is so unified with the other that he cannot do without him. His heart is full of the thoughts, ideas, and visions of him. If his friend is female, the visions at heart are accompanied by the sexual wishes and desires of the ego.
Those thoughts in mind now are "obsessions". He doesn't inhibit thinking or remembering his friend. He cannot erase the visions of him even he wants to do it. Because they are now part of his personality.
Dear Readers, some "spiritual connections" emerge when people are always with some living and nonliving things, not only with their friends, because of conditioning.
It is not important what you are with. It can be a friend, an animal or even a non-living thing.
If a person goes for a walk on the same street continuously, some "spiritual connections" emerge in his heart. If he visits another city for a while, he misses everything on that street because of the spiritual connections he is not aware of. These spiritual connections become stronger if their memories are repeated by photos, films, videos, or conversations about them.
The human soul generally shows the same reactions to the dreams of the things and events as it reacts to the real ones. For example, a person who sees someone he loves is happy and when he remembers him, he becomes happy again. Many people are afraid of going out at night because they are afraid of the thoughts and ideas of them. Many people show mimics of disgust, as they see the thing in real, when a disgusting is mentioned. Because of this feature of the heart that it shows the same reactions to visions and realities, how the spiritual connections are formed at togetherness with the self of the goods, likewise spiritual connections are formed at togetherness with their dreams. Each time he remembers the thing, situation or the event, these spiritual affinities become stronger.
Dear Readers, this physical and spiritual automation and the spiritual connections are the most important factors that ease our adaptation to physical and social environment and make us happy.
These "conditionings" and the "spiritual closeness" that occurs in our hearts, of course, is a big mercy and gift of Allah. A "spiritual love circle" is formed between "human" and "everything around human". And a person will realize the love circle when he is away from this environment and begins to miss them. However, if the limits are exceeded in terms of these spiritual connections, they become "addiction" and "obsessions" like our mental activities. They transform into psychological illnesses that disturb our lives. Whereas the person must be in the midway. It is ordered in the Hadiths that:
"Avoid very extremeness and very scantiness." [Bukhari]
"Who is excessive would be destroyed. [Muslim]
"The medium work is good." [Daylami, Bayhaqi]
Therefore, Allah Who knows everything He created tries to protect human from this immoderateness. This is the reason why Allah ordered and advised human not to give importance to anyone or anything but Allah's will.
It is ordered in Qur'an 84 times that Allah must be mentioned as much as possible.
Rasulullah ordered in the Hadiths that:
"Mention Allah as much as you want, until (factious) people say that you are crazy" [Ramuz'ul Ehadis]
When the person mentions Allah, a "spiritual closeness" is formed in his heart such as the spiritual connection for the material. Every time this remembrance is repeated, this "spiritual affinity" gets stronger. It becomes a "spiritual passion" after a while.
This divine passion for Allah clears off all the other things rather than Allah. Therefore, there is no love or commitment as a passion left in the heart rather than Allah. Allah is always loved the most. The Muslims having real belief has no psychological obsessions, passions, or addictions.
Anyway, Islam itself is a divine order that tries to replace human in its real place by connecting him to the real deity Allah by purifying the human from all the things that his ego has divinized.
Be entrusted to Allah.
Dr. Ismail Ulukus