The companions of the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him, approached him on one occasion asking which person is the best. He responds by saying, "Every one that has a heart that is makhmoom and a tongue that is truthful." They said, "We know what a truthful tongue is, but what is a heart that is makhmoom?"
The Arabic language is so rich and deep. To help illustrate what is being conveyed by this word makhmoom, when one would say something like "sweeping the house," they would say khamamt al-bayt. As such, a heart that is makhoom is one that essentially is swept clean of anything harmful. This is easily seen in how the Prophet Muhammad responds to his companions' question with his own definition.
"[A heart that is makhmoom] is one is that conscious of the Divine and is clean, in which there is no oppression or aggression and no bitterness or jealousy." May all of us be granted hearts that are of this nature.
The world around us is so distracting and constantly draws our attention aware from developing and taking care of ourselves. Anxiety plagues our mind on a daily basis. We can't lay our heads down upon our beds in the night-time hours without our eyes staying wide open as worry takes control. The slightest of issues just set us off. We unleash a rage unlike anything seen before at the smallest of affronts. Relationship after relationship loses their strength because we fail to see that the state of the relationships we have with those around us are impacted deeply by the relationship we have with our hearts.
"Indeed, in the body, there is a morsel of flesh that if it is right then the whole of the body is set aright, and if it is corrupt, the whole of the body is corrupt. Indeed, it is the heart." -- The Prophet Muhammad
It was a regular practice of the Prophet Muhammad to reflect on the state of his heart and he would pray regularly for a heart that was taken care of. How often do we think about the situation of our hearts? The thing that exists within us that beat upon beat is giving us the ability to live. If you were to look into yours today, what would you find?
A moment of honest and critical reflection can give us insight as to what that state of our inside actually is. I can't see inside myself, but in what comes from me I can find what I need to be mindful of. The words that come from my mouth, the deeds and decisions carried out by my being, all can give me indication of how my heart actually is.
The Prophet Muhammad greeted young and old with a smile, never cursed or spoke harshly, gave of his provision without hesitation, and emphasized ideals of mercy, compassion and understanding. He never looks at what he loses, but always what the other will gain. Epitomizing selflessness, speaking only truth and honoring every promise. His external is a reflection of his internal.
Do you ever find yourself in a place where you are anxious and you don't know why? Where you find yourself thinking, how did I end up where I am now, in comparison to where I used to be? Our souls are not made from this world, but they are from another place. And what we feed them should not be of this world because they are not of this world.
Our hearts' function is simply to love and they will love what we put into their presence, whether it is something good or not. Ask yourself what it is that you really love and if it is something that is actually good for you or if it just gives you a semblance of contentment, but really is only giving you complacency.
Each one of us knows we want to have tranquility over chaos, a place where we are centered rather than imbalanced. We want to be in a place where we are at peace with ourselves, rather than having a war being waged within us. We don't enjoy feeling anguish. We don't enjoy feeling hopelessness. We don't enjoy feeling that things will never go right. We don't have to feel that way.
Be in the presence of good people who will uplift your spirits. Be in an atmosphere that does not bog you down and makes you so distracted that all it tells you is the material gains of this world is something that will give you satisfaction when in reality it will never give you that kind of appeasement.
"True richness is not having an abundance of things from the earth, but true richness is having a richness of the soul." -- The Prophet Muhammad
A state of contentment is attainable, but the first step toward reaching that state starts from within.