Word 41: Anyone who thinks seriously about self-knowledge views himself as a continuous person with levels, and each level has a specific rule. The higher order is the truth of the lower order, and the lower order is the degradation of the higher order. The body is the lower order of the soul, and despite this, all actions are of the same identity.


Word 41: Anyone who thinks seriously about self-knowledge views himself as a continuous person with levels, and each level has a specific rule. The higher order is the truth of the lower order, and the lower order is the degradation of the higher order. The body is the lower order of the soul, and despite this, all actions are of the same identity.

A human is a creature with different levels, a continuous and extended truth. For example, one level is his material and physical body. During the self-knowledge discussion, it was demonstrated that our “Nafs” differs from the material body; that is, we have an immaterial plane of existence known as “Nafs”. Our Nafs possess a “Barzakh” or “Khial” or “Methal” Tajarrud (immateriality). For example, we imagine a big mountain in our mind. This mountain with its dimensions does not fit in our mind; it does not fit in our brain, so how do we perceive it? We have proved that the mind is distinct from the brain. Our imaginations are immaterial. “Imagination power,” “Khial power,” or “Methal Power” refers to the level of us that perceives immaterial forms. Therefore, the dreams we see are related to the Imagination power or Khial power. The faces we imagine in our minds are related to the Khial power. This is one of the levels of Nafs’ immateriality.

Our “level of intellect,” which perceives immaterial and formless objects, comes after or is higher than the level of Khial or Imagination. We perceive the meanings and concepts, which have neither shape nor matter. “Imaginary images” or “Khial images” had shape but no matter. “concepts and meanings” have neither shape nor matter, but we perceive them. This level is called the level of “intellectual,” which is higher than the Khial level.

Some philosophers believe that we have a level between Khail and intellect level, which is called “Wahm” (illusion). The Wahm or illusion power perceives partial meanings. “Partial meanings” are those whose one side is connected to matter, or in other words, they are meanings that are derived from matter. For example, if someone puts his hand on his chest in front of you and lowers his head, your eyes see the hand on the chest, and the head is down; the eye sees this. But you have a power that allows you to understand that someone respects you. The “Wahm power” or “Illusion power” perceives the meaning from material forms.

Another example: you are reading a book, and your eyes see some black lines or curves on white paper, but when you read a page or a line of this book, you understand the meaning. This is the work of the Wahm or Illusion power. A dog understands the love and kindness of its owner; love is a meaning. Therefore, the dog also has the Wahm power. Animals have Illumination power, although its intensity depends on their level. That’s why their understandings are different. So, Wahm power perceives partial meaning.

The Wahm level is not an independent level like the Khial or intellect levels. It is a subset of the intellect level. Our intellect level understands general meanings (or meanings without connection to material forms), but our wahm level understands partial meanings (or meanings in connection with a material form). Both understand the meaning, but our wahm or illusion level is a subset of our intellect level.

“Super intellect immateriality,” an infinite degree for humans, is the higher order. A level without boundaries. The human soul has no boundaries. Human’ Nafs cannot ever reach a state in which an individual declares, “I am no longer able to receive knowledge”. Imam Ali (A) said: “All containers lose capacity when something is added to them, but the knowledge container gains capacity when something is added to it”.

An individual’s knowledge container becomes larger as he gains more knowledge. As a result, he developed greater talent and became ready for greater information. The Nasf is the human’s container. Despite the fact that knowledge and its container—our Nafs—are the same and one, this example helps to clarify things.

So there are four primary levels for humans: material, khial, intellect, and super intellect.

These levels differ, yet the reality is continuous and expanded. At the same time, we are one identity, one person, with a single “I” and an identity. I am not ten persons; rather, I am one person with different levels. The body follows a rule: it wants both water and food. No matter how much information you acquire, your body will not be content; the body desires its sustenance; no matter how much you eat, you will not become a scientist, and you will not get wisdom since knowledge is nourishment for the soul. The soul and the body each desire their food. If we go to the market and sell these words, we will not receive a kilo of veggies since they are not of this world. Everything has a market of its own. On the other hand, if you collect all the gold in the market and carry it to the Saints, they will not offer you a single piece of wisdom. Our body has a need; it has weariness, life, sleep, death, and health, but it has nothing to do with our spirit.

According to one narration, “A believer may be afflicted with any calamity because his body is equal to others”. Both unbelievers and believers have bodies. If an infidel maintains cleanliness, he will remain healthy, but a believer will become ill if he does not maintain cleanliness; there is no distinction between the two in this respect. But what is the distinction between a believer and an unbeliever? Their spirits vary. Because it is no longer tied to the body, our body perishes and rots, but our higher level is subject to a different regulation. If we say: a corpse is buried, it rots, the human body rots; it has nothing to do with his “Nafs,” nothing to do with “I,” and the fact that we say: “I,” this is something other than this body, that is, this body is a part of it, since it is a continuous and extended reality.

Man abandons the material level while other orders remain in place. The destruction of the material level does not affect the other levels because they are not made of matter. Amir Al-Mu’minin Ali (A): “O God, enlighten my appearance with your obedience, and my inner with your love, and my heart with your knowledge, and my soul with your sight, and my secret with complete attachment to your majesty, O owner of glory and beauty”. Our body is a degradation level of our reality.

A dove’s soul is not the same as a dog’s soul. A camel’s soul is not the same as a bird’s soul. That is, every soul is defined by its body, which serves as the soul’s descendent. Just like each material body is unique, their spirits are likewise distinct. The body must be in sync with the soul.

Allameh Hassanzadeh said: “One day, when I was reading in a garden, I noticed a cow staring at me. Something occurred to me as I stared at this cow. I also saw a tree next to the cow. Plant, animal, and human. I discovered the tree’s head was buried in the dirt. The tree’s head is the same as its root since it obtains its sustenance there; however, the tree is upside down, and its head is buried in the earth. The animal is in a horizontal position, while the human is standing straight with his head to the sky”.

A plant has a soul. It has a soul that is planning its development. An animal (cow) has a soul. A Human has a soul. But their spirits are linked to their bodies. The cow does not grasp what you know about the world. Have you ever considered how a cow perceives the world? How does a cow see the world? How does a rabbit see the world? How does a fly see the world? They do not perceive things in the same way that we do.

As we said, Our body is a lower-order entity than our soul, beloved; our soul and body are linked. As a result, just as our soul influences our body, so does food affect our soul. Why do our laws restrict us from eating certain things? Why is it banned to eat pork? According to an article, they discovered a number of extremely dangerous worms in pork. These worms then enter the human body by eating pork meat and develop in the muscles. A person may notice something sticking out of his body, which is caused by the same worms already present in the body. Now that we have killed the worms, will the pork become halal? No, Because the quality of the animal is transferred to us by eating that meat. A pig is a ruthless animal. It has the attribute of lack of honor. The person who eats pork lacks zeal. Now they killed the germ; what will they do with that attribute?

Allameh Hassanzadeh said: “Oh God, these humanoids who are so savage from eating lamb and sheep meat, what would they become if you made wolf and leopard meat halal for them”? Eating the flesh of a predatory animal is prohibited due to the transference of its predatory character. A person had taken a family trip to India. This individual stated: “I once yelled at my child to be careful; what are you doing?” in front of the Indian tour leader. The tour leader then said, “Why are you so angry?” Why are you shouting? Then he added, “You eat meat, which is why you are like this.” Make an effort to cut off meat, eat just fruit, or go vegetarian. This inside monstrosity character disappears. You’ve undoubtedly witnessed wild animals fighting while eating. This is characteristic of carnivores. But have you ever witnessed herbivores fight while eating? They are quite tranquil. They may fight over other things, but they don’t fight over food. Animal attributes are passed to humans through the consumption of their flesh. As a result, we must be mindful of what we consume since our bodies have an impact on our souls.

Allameh Hassanzadeh often reminded us not to consume prepared and processed foods like sausages, hamburgers, ham, fast food, extra. These create your soul and body. These are harmful to the body. Why did cancers not exist in the past as they do now? A 25-year-old guy has many tumors in his intestines, a tumor emerging from his liver, and a tumor emerging from his brain. These relate to the meals people consume. According to Allamah, the majority of sicknesses are brought on by the ice that is added to water. Hence, you should never consume ice water. He continued, saying, “This includes popsicles, ice cream, etc”. When a person is young, he consumes ice water without noticing its effects. When he ages, illnesses strike out of nowhere. The body fights against processed foods and chemical additives as much as it can, but eventually, a lump forms that can develop into cancer or other disorders. Eat the meal that Angel Gabriel (A) has prepared, Allameh said.

Fruits, veggies, and natural food are prepared by Angel Gabriel (A). Rice, potatoes, cabbage, cucumbers, oranges, etc are part of them. Allameh said: “Don’t drain the rice. Rice is the seed that best suits human temperament. The strength of the rice will thus be extracted during the draining process. Then you consume rubbish and discard all the benefits of rice. In the past, weak children were given water of rice that had been boiled to drink in order to strengthen themselves. Now, however, they take the water and discard it.

According to Allameh, “Allium sp.” is the strongest vegetable and the most suited to human nature. It is not recommended for consumption by younger people due to its strong temper and effects on human early maturity. Because of the way this vegetable affects human nerves, worried people should consume it, especially the juice, which is particularly good for nerves. Onion is also the sister of it. It is similar to  “Allium sp”.

Eat as much natural and vegetarian food as you can, even though foods like yogurt, milk, cheese, and so on are no longer natural. Chicken and meat are also growing with hormons and chemicals. Chemical fertilizers are also used for wheat; the danger here is that temperaments will react, and individuals will have a wide range of illnesses by the time they are fifty. So, let’s use caution when eating. “Because the body is the lower order of our soul,” avoid putting anything in your mouth.

We categorized worlds into three groups:

  1. The material or natural world: its characteristic is that it has form and matter.
  2. The Methal, Khial, Barzakh, or Malakut, Imagination world: its characteristic is that it has form, but it is free from matter (This is higher level than the material world).
  3. The Intellect or Jabarut world: its characteristic is that it has form, but it is free from matter (This is a higher level than the khial world). These categories are also true for humans. For example, we understand the meaning of love. Love has neither form nor substance. Power is a meaning and concept, it has neither form nor substance.

Humans also have a level called the body, which has both form and matter. One level above that is the khial (imagination) methal level, which are non-material forms. And one level higher than that is the level of intellect, which has neither form nor matter. As a result, humans have the ability to engage with any of these worlds.

Our body is a means of communicating with the material world. Our imagination can also be linked to the realm of imagination or the khial world, like angels and souls. Our intelligence allows us to be able to connect with the rational world.

According to Allameh Hassanzadeh, “When the curtains are withdrawn, and people see the reality, they will comprehend where he is and where he may have gone in the Hereafter. He screams like a wolf.” What was my potential, and who did I become? Where could I reach, and what is my current status? What did I enjoy about the material world? Why didn’t I complete myself? I spent many years acquiring cars, mansions, status, money, and so on, yet none of these are useful today.

Beloved, think a little about the world, that is, the world and death, and solve the problem of death for yourself. The Qur’anic verse instructs the Prophet: “Say, The death from which you flee will catch up with you; then you will be returned to the Knower of the Invisible and the Visible, and He will inform you of what you used to do” (Al-Juma’:8).

One day, every one of us will pass away and be buried. Our bodies will eventually be split apart and destroyed, but we will continue to exist and lead different lives from this physical one. Everything pertaining to the physical world remains in this location. Gold, money, homes, vehicles, and so forth. These are going to remain here, and we each go on our own with our knowledge and deeds.

Some individuals wish the world for their children instead of themselves. “Your possessions and your children are a test, but with God is a splendid reward” (At-Taghabun:15). God is the Sustainer. Let us exercise caution so that the world does not bind us. Love of the world is the source of all evil.

Now, let’s return to the primary subject. Thus, our Nafs has several layers, including the physical body, the imagination, and the intellect. Simultaneously, “I” represents an identity, a personality. “I” or “Nafs” is a variety of levels, yet it remains a singular individual. That is why we say things like, “I ate, I did, I said”.

It is crucial to remember that “Lower order is always an expression of greater order”. That is why we interpret dreams. Because our dream is a representation of reality, the dream that we had was a representation of a reality that I observed in this manner. By interpreting the dream, we want to find out what was the truth that appeared in this way? Sometimes, we describe a story or a meaning in the form of a story. For example, betrayal, sacrifice, courage, perseverance, endurance, and patience can be told in the form of a story.

The story is related to our khial or imagination world. That is, the meaning has been degraded from the intellect world and is visualized in the khial world. Allameh Hassanzadeh said: “Most people stay in the realm of imagination and do not go beyond it; Therefore, they are afraid of intellectual topics, they run away, they get tired, it is heavy for them”.

Storytelling is the most effective approach to educating and imparting meaning to kids. Their imagination is strong, and they will rapidly absorb the material; yet, if you talk to them to convey meaning, they possibly become bored and may not understand it at all.

As a result, kids get frightened by terrifying stories or scary movies because their imagination is active, and they lack the intelligence to recognize that this is a movie or fiction, and it might be a deception. Educational stories are valuable not only for children but also for adults. Elders who have not attained their intelligence or whose brains have not matured thus if we speak to them in the form of a tale so that they comprehend the meaning.

Muhammad Mahdi Me’marian

All praise is to God to the extent that He deserves it.                                     

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