What Is Islamic Psychology In Perspective of Islam And Science

Islamic Psychology as a foundation and basic concepts that became the initial foundation of psychotherapy with Islamic insight.Islam is a very great religion, which gives enlightenment to human beings in various aspects related to the universe, people and life. In other words Islam is an ideology (not just a  religion) that is capable of answering every problematic question of mankind.

Since thousands of years ago the concept of man has been formulated by scholars from philosophers, scientists and clerics.  Over time history has noted many theories of human nature and essence to the life.It is therefore, we can say   psychology is one of the disciplines that are included in it.

What Is Islamic Psychology In Perspective of Islam And Science

In general, the psychology discipline that has been developing has three main functions, namely; explain  (explanation) , predict  (prediction) and control  (controlling)  human behavior. According to this definition we know that, what is called psychotherapy. The term psychotherapy (and counseling) itself has an understanding as a way of professionals (psychologists, psychiatrists, counselors, doctors, teachers, etc.) with a view to helping clients with psychological problems.


Science and religion are classically often observed as two exclusively separate views. No part of science can be explained by religion and vice versa. The meeting between science and religion is a fantasy that is impossible to be presented in a real way. If these two exclusive things are forced to meet, then certainly there will be disasters both in terms of the concept of science and on the side of religious beliefs. Science is based on a view of positivism.Science is based on sensory, materialistic and physical facts that already have certainty of meaning. The theory of science is derived from facts and data through inductive, deductive, or hypothetical-deductive methods.On the other hand religion is sensitive to human experience because The split between the “secular modern systems of science” and the “Islamic system” can be linked by starting from the foundation of one’s faith.

 The concept of Islamic psychology itself is born out of two approaches that complement each other and can not be separated for the moment at least:

1. Islamic psychology is the concept of modern psychology that has undergone filtering and in it there are insights of Islam. So Islamic Psychology is defined as an Islamic perspective on modern psychology by removing concepts that are not appropriate and contrary to the concept of Islam.

2. The science of man whose conceptual framework is built on the basis of the formal sources of Islam, namely the Qur’an and the Sunnah of the Prophet (Hadis), taking into account also the scientific requirements as is commonly in the methodological discussion of a theoretical concept.

Islamic psychology studies include the soul (nafs) with attention to the body or body, in other words between the soul and body emerges a continuity that reflects the totality and unity. The state of the human body may be a reflection of his soul. Body expression is just one psychological phenomenon. In formulating who the human being is, Islamic psychology sees humans not merely from the behaviors that their bodies show. Nor is it based on speculation about what and who humans are. Islamic Psychology intends to explain man by formulating what the god says about man. Islamic psychology recognizes the complexity in human beings in which only the creator is capable of understanding and unraveling that complexity.

Therefore, Islamic psychology is very concerned about what God says about humans. That is, in explaining who humans are, we do not simply base ourselves on the real human behavior, but we can understand from the postulates about human behavior drawn from the expression of god. The study of the many human beings mentioned in Allah in the Quran:

“We will demonstrate to them the signs of power We are in every region of the earth and on themselves their own until clear to them that the Quran it is true Seest enough that Verily your Lord be witness over all things ? “( Qs Fushshilat , 41:53).

This verse is about to reveal that in the universe and in man there is something that shows the signs of Allah. What is meant by something is the secrets of the state of nature and the state of man. If the secrets are revealed by man, then be human as a knowledgeable creature, a knowledgeable being.

Simply put, it can be said that in man there is a complexity that can be used as a field of study. In various verses many mentioned terms that speak about the state of the human self, such as nafs, spirit, aql, qalb, fitrah, fujura, taqwa, fuad and so on. The term nafs, including the word most often mentioned by the Quran, is more than 300 times.

The Concept of Islamic Psychology About Man

The explanation of the human concept according to Islamic psychology is influenced by the human concept in the view of tasawuf, which we can generally find by looking at several aspects:

1. Jismiyah aspect (Dimension of body):

The body is one aspect in the human being that is material. Its form and existence can be sensed by humans, such as the body and its members such as hands, feet, eyes, ears and others. In the Qur’an many mentioned that humans have endowed the body with the best shape.

“He created the heavens and the earth with haq. He formed your shapes and cleansed them of yours and only to Allah is your return “(QS At-Taghaabun, 64: 3)

“Verily We have created man in the best possible form”. (QS At-Tiin, 95: 4)

“And God took you out of the belly of your mother in the state of knowing nothing, and He gave you hearing, sight and heart, that ye may be grateful”. (Surat an-Nahl, 16:78).

With a good body or physical expected people to thank God. But even so many human beings then become disbelievers, disbelievers and do not thank God.

“We have created man from a drop of mingled sperd [1535]  which We are trying to test (by command and prohibition), therefore We made Him hear and see. Verily We have appointed him a straight path; there are grateful and some are kafir “. (Surah Al-Insaan, 76: 2-3). [1535] It means mixing male seed with woman.

From the aspect of the body is then the emergence of the tendency and desire called lust, that is interest in worldly things, as mentioned in the Quran:

“Being beautiful in the eyes of men of love to whatever is desired, That is: women, children, rich treasure of gold, silver, horse of choice, livestock and fields. That is the joy of life in t

Aspect of Nafs In Islamic Psychology

 Nafs is defined with the soul or self. But in this context the nafs in question is the psycho-physical substance of man, in which the jasadi component jismiyah joins the spiritual component so as to create potential potentials, but can be actual if the man seeks it. Each of the existing components has latent forces that can drive human behavior. The actualization of the nafs forms the personality, whose development is influenced by internal and external factors.

The aspect of nafsiyah has the innate potential that existed in the psychophysical human being brought from birth and who will be the driving force and determinant for human behavior, whether in the form of deeds, attitudes, speeches and so on.

In this aspect of nafsiyah there are three dimensions that have different roles to each other, namely:

a. Dimension of the Heart (Al-Qolb)

Al-Ghazali explicitly  sees the hearts of two aspects, namely the physical mind and the spiritual heart. Physical mind is one of the organs contained in the human body in the form of a lump of meat that is shaped like a fruit sanubar (sanubari) or like the heart of a banana located in the chest to the left. This heart is commonly called the heart. While the spiritual heart is something that is subtle ( lathif ), rabbani and ruhani associated with the body kalbu. This part is the essence of man.

Al-Ghazali argues that the heart has an instinct called  al-nur al-ilahy  (divine light) and  al-bashirah al-bathinah (the inner eye) that exudes faith and belief. Al-Zamakhsyariy (in Abul Mujib and Jusuf Mudzakir, 2001) asserts that the heart was created by Allah SWT, in accordance with its original nature and inclined to receive the truth from Him. From this side, the spiritual heart is part of the essence of the human nafs. This heart serves as a guide, controller and controller of other nafs structures. If the heart is functioning normally then human life becomes good and in accordance with the original nature. Humans not only recognize the physical environment and soialnya, but also able to recognize the spiritual, divine and religious circles. Therefore, the heart is also called  fithrah ilahiyah  or  fithrah rabbaniyah-nuraniyah.

You are able to gain knowledge  (al-ma’rifah)  through the power of taste  (al-zawqiyah) . You will gain the peak of knowledge when man has purified himself and produced  inspiration  (the holy promptings of Allah SWT) and  kasyf  (the opening of a wall that blocks the heart).

When actual, the potential of the heart is not always a good behavior. Good bad depends on the human choice itself. It is as described in a hadith:

“Verily in the body is a lump of flesh. When he is good then all bodies become good, but if he is damaged then all the body becomes damaged anyway. Remember that he is heart (heart) “(Narrated by Al-Bukhari from Nu’man ibn Bashir)

he world, and in the sight of Allah is the place of good return (heaven) “. (Surah Ali-Imran, 3:14).

Lust in psychological terminology is close to the term konasi (power of karsa). Conation (willingness) is to react, to do, to try, to will, to will. The aspect of personality conjunction is characterized by behavior that aims and impulses to do. Lust shows the subconscious structure of the human personality. If humans indulgence in the domination of his lust then his personality will not be able to exist, either in the world let alone in the afterlife. Humans who possess this trait essentially have a position equal to even more humiliated animals:

We have made the hearts, but they are not used for understanding (the Signs of Allah) and they have eyes (but) they are not used for seeing (signs of Allah) and they have ears (but) they do not use to hear (the verses of Allah). they are like cattle, they are even more perverse. Those are the ones who are neglectful. (Surah Al-A’raf: 179)

Lust has two powers:  al-ghadhabiyah  and  al-syahwaniyah . Al-Ghadhabiyah  is a potential power to avoid the self from all that is harmful. Al-ghadhabiyah  in the terminology of psychoanalysis is called  difence mechanism,  a behavior that seeks to defend or protect the ego against error, anxiety and shame, the act of protecting oneself and exploiting and rationalizing one’s own actions. While  al-syahwaniyah or lust is a power that has the potential to induce themselves from all things fun. Syahwat in psychology terminology is called  appetite, namely a desire (desire, lust, lust), motives or impulses based on changes in the state of physiology.

The principle of appetite lust follows the pleasure principle and tries to spit out its primitive impulses. If these impulses are not met then there is tension. The working principle of this lust has in common with the working principle of the animal soul, beast or tame beast. The beast has an aggressive (attacking) impulse, whereas benign animals have sexual impulses. Because of this principle then lust is also called  fithrah hayawaniyah.

Aspects of Ruhiyah (Spirit)

The spirit is the human psychic substance that becomes the essence of its life. The spirit is the distinction between human essence and the essence of other beings. The spirit is different from the  spirit in psychological terminology, because the term ruh is more to substance, in contrast to the  spirit  which is more to the effect or effect of the spirit.

According to Al-Ghazali (in Abdul Mujib and Jusuf Mudzakir, 2001) the spirit is a subtle ( lathifah ) that is spiritual. He can think, remember, know and so on. The spirit is also the driving force for the existence of the human body (soul) that is supernatural.

The discussion of the soul is divided into two,  first, the  spirit associated with the substance itself, and the  two  spirits associated with the physical body. The first spirit is called  al-munvenalah , while the second is called  al-gharizah , or called  nafsaniah . Ruh  al-munazalah is  related to the original essence of the spirit which is revealed or given directly from Allah SWT. to man. The spirit of this essence does not change, because if it changes, it also changes the existence of human beings.

This spirit is created in the realm of the spirit (‘ spirit realm ) or in the nature of the covenant. Therefore the ruh  al-munazzalah  existed before the human body exists, so its very supernatural nature is only known through the information of revelation. Ruh  al-munazzalah  attached to the human self. This spirit can be regarded as the fitrah of origin which becomes the essence (essence) of human structure. Its function is useful to provide motivation and make the dynamics of behavior. This spirit guides the spiritual life of the human being to the divine radiant jur of illusion   that illuminates the human consciousness, straightening the mind and controlling the low impulses.

Personality  according to Islamic Psychology

Personality according to Islamic Psychology is the integration of the system of heart, mind and human passions that cause behavior (Abdul Mujib and Jusuf Mudzakir, 2001). The human aspect of nafsiyah has three powers: (1) the heart ( divine fithrah ) as the supra-conscious aspect of the human being with the power of affection (emotion-feeling); (2) reason ( fithrah insaniyah ) as the aspect of human consciousness that has the power of cognition (cipta); and (3) lust ( fithrah hayawaniyah) as the pre or subconscious aspects of human consciousness (karsa). These three components integrate to realize a behavior. The heart has a tendency to the nature of the spirit, the nafs to the body, and the mind between the spirit and the body. From the point of view, that personality is an integral part of the supra-awareness aspects, consciousness (human nature) and pre or subconscious (animal nature). Whereas from the point of function, personality is the integration of the power of affection (emotion), cognition and conformation that manifested in external behavior (walking, speaking, etc.) and inner behavior (thoughts, feelings, etc.)

Personality is in fact a product of the interaction between the three components, it’s just that one of them is more dominant than the other components. In that interaction the heart has a dominant position in controlling a personality. The principle works tend to the nature of human origin, which is longing for the presence of god and the sanctity of the soul. The actuality of the heart is determined by the control system. The control system in question is the prince that is guided by  fithrah al-munvenalah (Al-Quran and Sunnah). If this control system functions properly, then the human personality is in accordance with the mandate given by God in the nature of the covenant. But if he does not work then the human personality will be controlled by other components of lower rank.

While the basic principle of work is to pursue realistic and rationalistic things. Therefore, the main task of reason is to bind and restrain the lust. If this main task is accomplished then the mind is able to actualize its highest innate traits, but if not then the mind is exploited by lust.

While the lust of principle works only pursues worldly pleasures and wants to indulge his impulsive passions. If the control system of the heart and mind weaken the lust is able mengaktualkan the nature of luggage, but if the system of control of heart and mind remain functioning then the lust weakens. Lust alone has a very strong appeal compared to the other two nafsani fitrah systems. The power is caused by the help and whispers of demons and other impulsive tricks. The nature of lust is leading to  bad anger . But when he is granted God’s grace he becomes a positive force, namely the will ( iradah ) and the ability ( qudrah ) high degree.

The interaction of the three dimensions in the aspect of nafsiyah was actualized in three kinds of personality, namely:

Personality Ammarah ( nafs al-ammarah )

The personality of ammarah is the personality that tends to the nature of the body and the pursuit of the principles of pleasure . He dominates the role of heart to perform low acts in accordance with his primitive instincts, so that he is the place and source of ugliness and disgraceful behavior. Word of Allah SWT .:

And I do not free myself (of error), for Truly the lust always commands evil, except the lust granted by my Lord. Lo! My Lord is the Forgiving, the Wailing. (Surah Yusuf, 12:53).

An ammara personality is a personality that is influenced by human subconscious impulses. Whoever is this personality then actually he no longer has a human identity, because the nature of humanity has been lost. Humans who have an ammara personality can not only damage themselves, but also damage others. Its existence is determined by two powers, namely (1)  lust  who always wants lust, likeness, curiosity and interference affairs of others, and so forth; (2) the power of  ghadah  who always wants greedy, greedy, grabbing, fighting, wanting to master others, stubborn, arrogant, arrogant and so on. So the orientation of the ammara personality is to follow the nature of the animal.

The personality of ammarah can move into a good personality if it has been given mercy by Allah SWT. It takes practice or  riyadhah  specifically to suppress the lust of the  air , such as with fasting, praying, praying and so forth.

Personality Lawwamah ( nafs al-lawwamah )

The personality of the lawwamah is the personality that has gained the light of the heart, then he rises to fix the balance between two things. In his efforts it sometimes grows the bad deeds mentioned by his dark character, but then he is reminded by the  divine nur , so he denounces his deeds and then he repents . It can be understood that the personality of the lawwamah is in the midst of a doubt between the personality of ammarah and the personality of muthmainnah. Word of Allah SWT .:

And I swear by a soul that is very sorry (itself). (Surah Al-Qiyamah, 75: 2)

The personality of the lawwamah is a personality dominated by reason. As a component of human nature   reason follows the principle of rationalistic and realistic work that brings people to a level of consciousness. If the control system works then it is able to reach its peak as rationalism. Rationalism is widely developed by humanists who orientate their mindset to the power of “all” human, so it is  anthropocentric.

Intellect if it has been given spark nur kalbu then its function to be good. He can be used as one of the media to go to God. Al-Ghazali himself though strongly prioritizes the taste- oriented approach ( zawq ), but he still uses the ability of reason. Meanwhile, according to Ibn Sina, reason can achieve abstract understanding and reason also able to receive the abundance of knowledge from God.

Because of this unstable position then Ibn Qayyim Al-Jawziyah divides the personality of lawwamah manjadi two parts, namely: (1) personality  lawwamah malumah , the personality of the ignorant and unjust lawwamah; (2) Personality  lawwamah ghayr malumah , the personality who denounced for his bad deed and tried to fix it.

 Conclusion About Islamic Psychology

Islamic Psychology and Islamic-based psychotherapy is more than just predicting, explaining and controlling human behavior, but also directing that behavior to achieve His approval. Thus the presence of Islamic psychology is filled with a great mission of saving people and leading people to fulfill their natural inclinations to return to Him and earn His approval. Because the final task of Islamic psychology and psychotherapy with Islamic insight is to save humans, then psychology must utilize the teachings of religion.

Islamic psychology and insightful psychotherapy are prepared by using the Qur’an and sunnah as the main reference. While the Qur’an itself is revealed not solely for the good of Muslims, but for the good of all humanity:

Alif, laam raa. (this is) the Book which We sent unto you, that ye remove man from the darkness to a bright light with the permission of their Lord, (ie) to the path of the Mighty, Highly Praised God. (Surah Ibrahim, 14: 1)

by Abdullah Sam
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