You are on page 1of 51




Describe the contemporary concepts health and healing and their critical analysis In the light of Quranic verses, present Islamic principles of health and healing. Qurans injunctions regarding Health: Fundamental Duties and Fundamental Prohibitions Islams strategy for health and healing Prevention 1-Primary . Tahara . Nutrition .Exercise 2- Secondary Treatment of Diseases Mental Health Spiritual Health Therapeutic Sociology Finally to summarize

Definition of health according to the World Health Organization "WHO

Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity". This widely accepted definition was expanded in the 1970's and 1980s, as other components were included: intellectual, environmental, and spiritual health. In more recent years, this statement has been modified to include the ability to lead a "socially and economically productive life."

Critical analysis of these definitions

Health cannot be defined as a state at all, but must be seen as a process of continuous adjustment to the changing demands of living. The WHO definition is therefore considered by many as an idealistic goal rather than a realistic proposition

Critical analysis

Market forces advocate the importance of absolute individual freedom. They strongly resent any suggestion that the demands of society in general and the demands of family in particular must guide individual choices. When there are demands to correct the ecology, environment to them just means air and water free of pollution; it has nothing to do with social practices and systems that are dangerous for the health

WHO definition does not explain spiritual health

Another glaring weakness of the WHO definition is that it fails to properly explain the spiritual component of health. Some researchers tend to describe spiritual health as a feeling of happiness and contentment. They do not differentiate between mental health and spiritual health. Mental health is "a state of emotional and psychological well-being in which an individual is able to use his or her cognitive and emotional capabilities, function in society, and meet the ordinary demands of everyday life."

Spiritual Health

health, on the contrary, means an individuals ability to differentiate between right and wrong and resolve to lead a more righteous life, free of stratagems, deception, dishonesty and selfishness. Islam promotes Spiritual health.

Qurans Position

is a state of complete physical, mental, spiritual and social wellbeing, which must be safeguarded not only through the maintenance of a health preserving regime at the personal/individual level, but also through the establishment of a health-protective and promoting family system and a healthprotective and promoting social system.

Say: Who hath forbidden the beautiful (gifts) of Allah, which He hath produced for His servants, and the things, clean and pure, (which He hath provided) for sustenance? Say: They are, in the life of this world, for those who believe, (and) purely for them on the Day of Judgment. Thus do We explain the signs in detail for those who understand. 007.032 (Al-Araaf )


Unhealthy food prohibited

Forbidden to you (for food) are: dead meat, blood, the flesh of swine, and that on which hath been invoked the name of other than Allah; that which hath been killed by strangling, or by a violent blow, or by a headlong fall, or by being gored to death; that which hath been (partly) eaten by a wild animal; unless ye are able to slaughter it (in due form); that which is sacrificed on stone (altars); (forbidden) also is the division (of meat) by raffling with arrows: that is impiety. 005.003 (Al-Maeda )

About Environment

Why were there not, among the generations before you, persons possessed of balanced good sense, prohibiting (men) from mischief in the earth - except a few among them whom We saved (from harm)? But the wrong-doers pursued the enjoyment of the good things of life which were given them, and persisted in sin.
011.116 (Hud )

About Personal Hygiene

In Book well-guarded, Which none shall touch but those who are clean: Al-Qur'an, 056.078-079 (Al-Waqia )
And thy garments keep free from stain! 074.004 (Al-Muddaththir )

Unhealthy social practices prohibited

They ask thee concerning wine and gambling. Say: "In them is great sin, and some profit, for men; but the sin is greater than the profit." They ask thee how much they are to spend; Say: "What is beyond your needs." Thus doth Allah Make clear to you His Signs: In order that ye may consider 002.219 (Al-Baqarah )

Mental and spiritual health

Then will he be of those who believe, and enjoin patience, (constancy, and selfrestraint), and enjoin deeds of kindness and compassion. Al-Qur'an, 090.017 (Al-Balad)

Sexual Hygiene
Nor come nigh to adultery: for it is a shameful (deed) and an evil, opening the road (to other evils). 017.032 (AlIsra)
If two men among you are guilty of lewdness, punish them both. If they repent and amend, Leave them alone; for Allah is Oft-returning, Most Merciful. 004.016 (An-Nisa)

Mother & Child Health

Let the women live (in 'iddat) in the same style as ye live, according to your means: Annoy them not, so as to restrict them. And if they carry (life in their wombs), then spend (your substance) on them until they deliver their burden: and if they suckle your (offspring), give them their recompense: and take mutual counsel together, according to what is just and reasonable. And if ye find yourselves in difficulties, let another woman suckle (the child) on the (father's) behalf. 065.006 (At-Talaq)

On the basis of these verses, it is not difficult to conclude


Islam, health is not a separate entity but one of the essential constituents of peace, which comprise peace at the individual, family and social level. There are three tiers of society: individual, family and society. All three have equal importance and none can be sacrificed through the sword of the other. Health therefore too has to involve all the three.


declares prohibited all those things and practices that do not form parts of the normal requirements of the body and can directly lead to the development of a disease, which more often than not becomes fatal or causes physical handicaps like blindness, paralysis, etc. (Alcohol, pork, unhealthy sexual practices

Makruh & Mustahab

Islam declares makruh or undesirable all those things and practices, which may harm the health but are neither usually fatal, nor lead to any physical handicap like blindness, paralysis etc Islam declares Mustahab or desirable or obligatory all those things and practices that have beneficial effect on the health of the individual or society in general. (Circumcision, several foods, Ablution, Prayer, Istanja, etc.)

Islams multi-pronged strategy to promote health and to treat illness.

1. Primary Prevention Istanja (Washing of private parts after urinating), which has huge protective effects against the urogenital infection; Wudu (Ablution), which involves washing of the exposed organs and mouth reducing the risks of mouth infections, cardiovascular problems, skin infections and cancers and eye infections; Ghusal-Washing of private parts after intercourse and bathing as son as possible; which will decrease the chances of sex related diseases;

Primary prevention in Islam

Total ban on premarital, extramarital sex and promiscuity, homosexuality and prostitution, which all are the leading factors responsible for propagation of various sex related disorders Avoidance of sex during menses, which again prevents from urogenital infections; A compulsory period of Iddah (waiting period) between two marriage partners, which again is very important in preventing sex transmitted diseases.

Primary prevention in Islam

Total ban on the production, serving and use of alcoholic beverages, Total ban on all addicting substances including drugs and smoking, Total ban on gambling, which will prevent pathological gambling and suicides; Breast-feeding for two years that decreases the chances of a woman getting pregnant before the expiry of the 2 year period

2-Secondary prevention:

vaccines, safe drinking water, use of pastes and creams to prevent skin diseases Circumcision that prevents from Phimosis, Paraphimosis, sex transmitted diseases including AIDS and the Cancer of Cervix (among women); can also be included as a method of secondary prevention, as it involves a surgical procedure. Miswak (Brushing of teeth), which has a remarkable preventive effect on the infective diseases of teeth, gums and several internal organs, is also a part of secondary prevention

O ye people! Eat of what is on earth, Lawful and good; and do not follow the footsteps of the evil one, for he is to you an avowed enemy.
002.168 (Al-Baqarah )

They ask thee what is lawful to them (as food). Say: lawful unto you are (all) things good and pure: 005.004 (Al-Maeda )

Moderation in eating
"Eat of the good things We have provided for your sustenance, but commit no excess therein, lest My Wrath should justly descend on you: and those on whom descends My Wrath do perish indeed! 020.081 (Ta-Ha )

No excessive eating
O Children of Adam! wear your beautiful apparel at every time and place of prayer: eat and drink: But waste not by excess, for Allah loveth not the wasters. 007.031 (Al-Araf [The Heights]) In one Hadith, Prophet (SAW) advised to keep 1/3 stomach empty when we finish the meal.

Emphasis on fruits and vegetables

(Every) fruit (enjoyment) will be there for them; they shall have whatever they call for; 036.057 (Ya-Seen)

Ye shall have therein abundance of fruit, from which ye shall have satisfaction.043.073 (Az-Zukhruf) And from the fruit of the date-palm and the vine, ye get out wholesome drink and food: behold, in this also is a sign for those who are wise. 016.067 (An-Nahl)

Value of exercise in maintaining health

Prophet's (S.A.W) advised all Muslims to teach their children Swimming, Archery Horse riding. He used to walk at fast pace He ran race with his wife, Ayesha (Ra) He used to work with his hands whether at home, in the kitchen, or with his companions collecting wood for fire,

Affliction with diseases

Whatever good, (O man!) happens to thee, is from Allah; but whatever evil happens to thee, is from thy (own) soul. and We have sent thee as a messenger to (instruct) mankind. And enough is Allah for a witness.4.079 (An-Nisa)
Many of the common chronic illnesses, coronary heart disease, hyper-tension, diabetes, peptic ulcer disease, obesity and depression have common man-made etiology, that is rich food, too much food, too much salt, too much sugar, smoking, stress and alcoholism

What to do when faced with disease?

"If Allah touch thee with affliction, none can remove it but He; if He touch thee with happiness, He hath power over all things.

006.017 (Al-Anaam )


Narrated Usamah ibn Sharik: The desert Arabs then came from here and there. They asked: Apostle of Allah, should we make use of medical treatment? He replied: Make use of medical treatment, for Allah has not made a disease without appointing a remedy for it, with the exception of one disease, namely old age. Abu Dawood


Narrated Abu Hurairah: The Prophet said, "There is no disease that Allah has created, except that He also has created its treatment."

Therapeutic modalities
1-Natural products including food and herbs which we find in Prophetic Medicine 2-Medical and surgical products and techniques discovered through research and studies. a- Historically Muslim physicians took a lead in this field like Ibn Sina, Ibn Rushd, Al Razi. b- Contemporary Medicine and Muslim Physicians role 3-Dua and Tarqyah.

Mental and Spiritual Health

Stress is the most common root cause of mental and spiritual aliment of modern age. Stress results from the following factors: a-Fear of the unknown and trying to see through and control the destiny.

b. Losses in our life of people and things dear to us and our inability to recover those losses.

c. Inner conflict between our heart and mind between what is known to be the truth and our failure to accept it as truth.

Let us examine how Quran deals with such situations

Be sure we shall test you with something of fear and hunger, some loss in goods or lives or the fruits (of your toil), but give glad tidings to those who patiently persevere, 2.155 (Al-Baqara)

3 Conclusions

A-In Islam, we do not have concept of the ownership of goods and life. Everything belongs to God and returns to him. So if we don't own that thing why mourn our loss? B- Our destiny is predetermined. We do not have control on that part. What we have control over is a limited free will, that is our actions, our choice to do good or bad, to believe in God or not to believe in Him. Worrying over such things is of no use.

C. Rejection of faith in Quran is called a disease. This denial of truth is due to arrogance

3 stages of spiritual development of soul

a. Nafsul Ammara: -The Passionate soul "I do not absolve myself Lo the (human) soul is prone to evil, save that whenever my Lord has mercy. Lo, Lord is forgiving; merciful." 12:53 (Surah Yusuf) This soul inclines toward sensual pleasure, passion and self gratification , anger, envy, greed, and conceit. Its concerns are pleasure of body, gratification of physical appetite, and ego.

Nafsul Lawamah

b. Nafsul Lawamah (The Reproaching Soul). "Nay, I swear by the reproaching soul" 75:1 This soul is conscious or aware of Evil, resists it, asks for God's grace, and pardon, repents and tries to amend and hopes to achieve salvation.

Hadith "These are two impulses within us. One spirit which calls towards good and confirms the truth. He who feels this impulse should know that it comes from Allah. Another impulse comes from our enemy (Devil) which leads to doubt and holds untruth and encourages evil. He who feels this should seek refuge in Allah from the accursed devil."

Nafsul Mutmainnah

c. The satisfied soul (Nafsul Mutmainnah). "O (you) soul in (complete) rest and satisfaction. Come back to your Lord, will pleased (yourself) and will pleasing unto him. Enter you then among my devotees, enter you in my heaven." 89:27-30 This is the highest state of spiritual development. satisfied soul is the state of bliss, content and peace. The soul is at peace because it knows that inspite of its failures in this world, It will return to God. Purified of tension, it emerges from the struggle with obstacles blocking the peace of mind and heart.

What should we do in panic and despair?

a. Increase dhikr (Remembrance of God) "who have believed and whose heart have Rest in the remembrance of God. Verify in the remembrance of God, do hearts find rest." 13:28

b. Increase their prayer. "O you who believe, seek help with steadfastness and prayer. For God is with those who are steadfast." 2:153
c. Ask forgiveness "And I have said: seek forgiveness from your Lord. Lo He was ever forgiving." 71:10

The spiritual care involves the acts of worship

A. Iman-The essence of belief is to rid ourselves of all false Gods around us, or within us, and to worship no one except God alone.

B.Salat: There are three health aspects of Salat I. Wadu: Washing all the exposed areas of the body, hand, feet, face, mouth, nostrils etc. 5 times a day is a healthy preventive procedure


Recitation of Quran: Has a healing effect on body, mind and heart. These healing effects are due to the effect of sound (Echo) and the meaning. 3-The movement in Salaat are mild, uniform, and involve all muscles and joints.


Sawm: The Islamic fasting: Islamic fasting is prescribed as way training of our mind, and body in self-restraints. "O you who believe is prescribed to you, as it was prescribed to those before you, so that you can learn self-restraint."


(Charity): The word itself means purification and growth. Here it is meant to imply the purification of legitimately earned wealth. Many of our crimes are committed with money or for love of money, and in the love of money one becomes violent in behavior.

Hajj (Pilgrimage to Mecca):

Few of the spiritual and health benefits are: Learn Prophet lbrahim's submission and absolute surrender to God's will, the opportunity for repentance. The social and political gathering of the Ummah Depicting brotherhood, and equality Programming and testing us for physical endurance, a requirement for all able men and women

Therapeutic Sociology

social solutions to problems arising out of social practices or changes. The medical solutions should be an important supplement to the social solution. It is this approach, which is consistent with the System envisaged in the Quran.

Aims of therapeutic sociology

To ensure that the supremacy of health is never compromised with in the affairs at different levels: individual, family, social, national and international; To campaign for establishing and strengthening a health-protective and promoting family system; To campaign for establishing and strengthening a health-protective and promoting social system;

Aims of Therapeutic Sociology

To ensure that the national and international laws are rewritten to safeguard health; To ensure that substances and practices that are decidedly dangerous for human beings are not allowed to exist or at least prosper; To conduct health impact studies of different socioeconomic developments and spread awareness about them; To aggressively campaign against the institutions that are involved in practices that increase dangers for the lives of human beings; To create atmospheric and environmental conditions suitable for promotion of health;

Aims of Therapeutic Sociology

To promote a model of family health that is conducive for the health of men, women and children; To focus on both the primary and secondary preventive methods; To unveil the designs of economic and political forces, so that they are not able to do anything that endangers health in any way; To promote such customs and rituals as are beneficial for individuals health, family health and the health of the masses; To lay an equal stress on the survival and health of all the human beings in different stages of lives: fetus, pediatric, adolescent, youth, middle aged and geriatric; To lay an equal stress on the health of both the genders: men and women.


Described the WHO definition of health and healing and their critical analysis In the light of Quranic verses, presented Islamic principles of health and healing. Qurans injunctions regarding Health including Fundamental Duties and Fundamental Prohibitions were presented Islams strategy for health and healing includes the following: 1-Prevention a-Primary . Tahara . Nutrition .Exercise b- Secondary 2-Treatment of Diseases a- Natural therapy like food and herbal products b- Medical and surgical therapies discovered by research and studies. 3-Mental Health 4-Spiritual Health 5-Therapeutic Sociology