Disease & it’s Meaning:
The world is a curious place; one’s whole life is nothing but a mystery. We strive our whole life to save ourselves from various afflictions and lead a successful life but no matter how much we try, we encounter certain problems in our lives. One of these problems is the advent of unwelcome diseases in our lives; diseases enter our lives like unexpected guests and nobody knows the purpose of their visit or when will they decide to leave. Likewise, diseases befall us due to a variety of reasons; sometimes we are so physically and emotionally vulnerable that we become more susceptible to certain ailments; also, some disease may genetically be passed to us and we do not have much choice about it. At other times, a virus, infection or an epidemic is prevalent in the area we live in. The problem with diseases is not the disease itself but how do we get rid of it. The diagnosis takes place but even that is not enough. Sometimes, we spend our entire lives treating an ailment but it is never completely eradicated.
Importance of Quran Recitation:
Various methods of eradicating or treating diseases include allopathic treatment, surgical treatment, and oral intake of chemicals and at other time exposing body to certain radiations. However, what we fail to understand or accept sometimes is how much impact simple words can have on one’s bodily functions. To elaborate the importance of words and their impact, there is an interesting anecdote to be shared:
Once there was a man who was to lose his wife, since his wife was suffering from cancer and was hospitalized. The husband would daily come to the hospital, sit beside his wife and recite some verse from Quran for her spiritual healing. Once, one of the surgeons entered the room and saw the husband reciting those words. The surgeon was infuriated and began to insult the husband for not believing in the doctor’s power for curing the illness and instead resorting to mere words. The husband got up quietly and very calmly called the doctor, “and idiot and a dog”. To this, the doctor got so infuriated that his eyes became bloodshot and he began cursing and ordering the husband to get the hell out of the hospital. The husband’s reply is noteworthy. He said, “When simple words such as idiot and dog stimulated some chemical reactions in your body and had such an impact that there was a visible change in you, why do you think the recitation of holy words will not have a positive effect on my wife’s body and disease?”
Thus, the doctor too understood why the husband did what he did. The moral of the story is that we cannot overlook the importance of spiritual or religious patterns of healing; they are as important as other means of curing a disease.
Islam & the Cure/Treatment of Different Diseases:
Islam is one the most renowned and popular religions of the world; more people are converting to Islam than any other religion because of its holistic approach towards all issues encountered by humans and humanity, in general and in specific. Islam, Quran and Ahadith combined together provide a perfect guideline to life in entirety. There is no issue, topic, or disease which has not been talked about in Islam and its cure not given in Quran and Ahadith. Following are mentioned some of the diseases most prevalent in today’s society and how Quran and Ahadith have tackled not only the origin and detail of the disease but also the cure has been provided.
The etymology of the term depression comes from the Latin word depression, which means to press down; the act of pressing down can take place literally, physically, psychologically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually as well. Depression may not be talked as our pathological diseases but it does exist as one of the huge realities of today’s world. From adolescents to old people, depression has become a common disease and people fail to cope with up. Sometimes, depression takes on a clinical degree and patients have to take medication in order to control it. However, in severe cases, people become desperate to even commit suicide. As Muslims, though, we have a firm belief in the power of the teachings given in Quran and Ahadith and some remedies for depression are given in Islam as follows:
a) Surah Duha:
Surah Duha is chapter 93 in the Holy Quran and its main theme includes reassurances of God’s mercy and love for humans. Duha is an Arabic word which literally means “morning”. Symbolically, morning can stand for hope and life after a period of dark night. Thus, during depression one feels as if life is a long journey in the gloomy night which would never end. The recitation of Surah Duha in times of depression assures and pacifies the reader of God’s immense mercy and compassion; it alleviates pain and loneliness and fills the reader’s heart with love. Thus, a good cure for depression is the recitation of Surah Duha daily.
b) Dua (Prayers):
It is reported that Prophet PBUH said that whoever is facing an affliction and recites the following dua, will have his sorrow transformed into joy. The dua is as follows:
“O Allah, I am your slave, the son of your slave. My forelock is in Your Hand. Your judgment of me is inescapable. Your trial of me is just. I am invoking You by all the names that You call Yourself, that You have taught to anyone in Your creation, that You have mentioned in Your Book, or that You have kept unknown. Let the Qur’an be delight of my heart, the light of my chest, the remover of my sadness and the pacifier of my worries.” (Source: Musnad Ahmad # 1/391)
Coughing/ Bad Throat:
Coughing/ bad throat is one of the most common diseases prevalent everywhere. The viruses which cause coughing are strong enough to change their physiology and hence, the medicines do not work as effectively as they do for other diseases. One effective and quick remedy for the treatment of coughing is the recitation of verse 58 of Surah Yaseen (Chapter 36) with the conviction that God will remove their illness. It is translated as,
“Peace will be on them, a word from the Merciful Lord.”
Diabetes is a serious ailment and almost 10% of the world’s population is diabetic. Prophet PBUH’s life is a perfect example of leading a simple yet complete life. The remedy which He PBUH suggested for dealing with diabetes is a well-balanced diet, most importantly. As per various reports of Ahadith, the items to be included in one’s diet to battle diabetes include barley bread instead of white/ bran bread, olive oil instead of cooking oil, honey instead of sugar.
Many young people when hitting puberty or throughout their adolescent lives have to go through the problem of dealing with skin rashes/ acne. They are bullied and made fun of because the skin rashes affect their appearance and deters their confidence. An effective dua to be recited for skin problems is as follows,
“La Illaha Illallahul Haleem ul Wakeel”
“There is no God but Allah, the most forgiving and the best disposer of affairs.”
It is a disease most common in especially females. Almost 26% of the adult population of the world is suffering from arthritis or its effects. While medicines do alleviate the pain, their effects are not long lasting. Thus, people resort for other methods of healing. In Islam, the repeated repetition of two of God’s names helps lessen joint pains:
“Al Quyyum Al Hayyu”
“The Living God”
The most common kidney problem faced by patients is the formation of stones/ dust particles in the kidney which cause serious infection and inflammation in the urinary tract. The remedy for the easy of kidney problems is the recitation of Chapter 94 or Surah Alam Nashra of the Holy Quran daily. Especially verse 5 of the chapter can be recited for the cure of all diseases. It is as follows:
“Fainna Ma-‘Alusri Yusra”
“So, verily, with every difficulty, there is relief.”