A Man decided to become a wood cutter, he bought for himself a brand new saw and started his wood cutting business. He did extremely well in his new business and was able to fell many trees and earn a lot of profit. Time passed by but his business started declining.. the number of tress he was able to fell declined day by day…he was confused.. he was perturbed that what in the world was happening! How come he was so successful in the start?
Then a man came to him and told him..Look at your saw…it has become blunt due to constant usage.. you need to sharpen your saw, you need to revive it back to its previous glorious state of sharpness. This is your tool , your key to success. If your tool is blunt and weak how can you be successful?
This is the Principle of Self-Renewal. This is one of the Keys To Success, this is the 7th Habit of Highly Effective People as mentioned by Stephen R. Covey.
The 7 Habits are:
- Habit 1: Be Proactive: Principles of Personal Vision
- Habit 2: Begin with the End in Mind: Principles of Personal Leadership
- Habit 3: Put First Things First: Principles of Personal Management
- Habit 4: Think Win/Win: Principles of Interpersonal Leadership
- Habit 5: Seek First to Understand, Then to be Understood: Principles of Empathetic Communication
- Habit 6: Synergize: Principles of Creative Communication
- Habit 7: Sharpen the Saw: Principles of Balanced Self-Renewal
About 7th Habit Stephen Covey says
Sharpen the Saw is the unique endowment of continuous improvement or self-renewal to overcome entropy. If you don’t constantly improve and renew yourself, you’ll fall into entropy, closed systems and styles. At one end of the continuum is entropy (everything breaks down), and the other end is continuous improvement, innovation, and refinement. On the continuum, you go from a condition of entropy to a condition of continuous renewal, improvement, innovation, and refinement.
It seems that the Muslims of today are struck in this Entropy. They are imprisoned in ritualistic worship and merely verbal declaration of Emaan.There is no improvement, no purification , no refinement and no increase of Emaan.
Fourteen hundred years ago, Allah Tala gave us the Glorious Quran and Muslims were expected to keep increasing their faith by it and therefore keep increasing and improving their Self and to keep purifying themselves.
Allah Tala says in Surah Tawbah Ayat 124:
And whenever there comes down a Sûrah (chapter from the Qur’ân), some of them (hypocrites) say: “Which of you has had his Faith increased by it?” As for those who believe, it has increased their Faith, and they rejoice.
Allah Tala says in Surah Al-Lail Ayat 17-18
And Al-Muttaqûn will be far removed from it (Hell). He who spends his wealth for increase in self-purification
Allah Tala also gave us this month of Ramadan to Sharpen up our emaan, to revive our souls and to re-energize our faith and connection with Allah and to purify ourselves. Prophet Muhammad saw gave us the wisdom of Sayaam during the day and Qayaam during the night to keep us on our toes and to Renew Our Self totally by being on a training program day and night for 30 days. Allah Tala imprisoned the Shayateen to make it easy for us to do so.
Before the Start of Ramadan, i mentioned about a “Welcome Ramadan” lecture by Safiya Khan here.
I also introduced Safiya Khan in the following words:
Safiya Khan is one of the most talented students of Dr. Farhat Hashmi. Due to her great interest and knowledge in the subject of Psychology, she beautifully and eloquently explains the concepts of the Quran based on the human psychology. Being an avid reador of she explains how the Qur’an gave the best concepts about Successful people fourteen hundered years ago which, the success literature of today provides after years of research. She brings in a unique dimension in understanding the Qur’an..
Alhamdullilah, this lecture is now available as a small booklet called “Welcome Ramadan A Self Renewal Plan.For this lecture and booklet, She has used this concept of Self Renewal from Stephen Covey
This booklet gives us the practical guidelines to implement this Self renewal Process Effectively in Ramadan. The Self Renewal Process by Stephen Covey incorporates 4 dimensions Soul Mind Body Heart..
“Human beings are not things needing to be motivated and controlled; they are four dimensional�body, mind, heart, and spirit.” (Stephen Covey)
Safiya Khan has discussed these four dimensions with respect to Ramadan. What practical steps need to be taken to Renew these four dimensions in Ramadan. Read through the pdf booklet for more details. A very brief summary of the renewal plan is shown in the slide below taken from her Presentation.
Just like cutting trees with a blunt knife is impossible…similarly entering Jannah is impossible with a blunt, dead Emaan. If we refuse to utilize Ramadan for renewing our selves and our emaan, we are worst than a stupid wood cutter cutting trees with a terribly blunt knife.
Coming Soon: Audio Lecture: Welcome Ramadan by Safiya Khan
Reminder: There is a Dora e Quran by Safiya Khan going on at Mehran Hall Creek Club, D.H.A, Karachi, Pakistan from 9:45 – 12:30 daily during Ramadan. All ladies are cordially invited.
This article first appeared as a guest post here