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June 5, 2005
The Heart: A syncytium

by Nadia Khan

Dedicated to my sister, "Bint Abdul Khaliq" for giving me the inspiration to write after a long while. Jazakallah khair sister.

"The dark areas crossing the cardiac muscle fibers are called the intercalated discs; they are actually the cell membranes that separate the individual cardiac muscle cells from one another. That is, cardiac muscle fibers are made up of many individual cells connected in series with another.Yet the electrical resistance through the intercalated disc is minimal because the cell membranes fuse with one another in such a way that they form freely permeable "communicating junctions" that allow free diffusion of ions. Thus, cardiac muscle is a syncytium of many heart muscle cells, in which the cardiac cells are so interconnected that when one of these cells become excited, the action potential spreads to all of them, spreading from cell to cell throughout the latticework of interconnections".[Guyton and Hall, 96).

As I was reading through these lines to make some sense of the physiology of the heart, it suddenly dawned upon me that the heart is a throbbing proof of the ideal Muslim ummah of which Holy Prophet(PBUH) talked about in his hadith:
"You find the Muslims in their mutual love and compassion, like one body, should any organ of it fall ill, the rest of the body will share in the fever and sleeplessness that ensues", (al-Bukhâri)

Allah (swt) also says in the Quran:"Lo! Allah loveth those who battle for His cause in ranks, as if they were a solid, cemented structure.(As-Saff 61:4)"
In other words, a true Muslim Ummah is a syncytium whose individual members are so interconnected that if any wave of happiness or grief, trouble or relief hits one cell, it percolates through the entire body, through the syncytium, through the whole cemented structure. We all know that if the two atria of the heart do not contract in synchrony with each other or if the two ventricles beat their own drum, the heart will come to a faltering halt and alongwith it the human body. In a similar manner, if the muslim ummah starts to create sects, innovations, and even new moons to celebrate Eid or to sanctify Muharram, then the whole body of Muslim ummah becomes destitute of blood and oxygen, imaan, and wisdom and the necrosis from one area spreads to the whole body. Allah (swt) always asks us to ponder over His prodigous signs which continue to stay unparallaled so that we can seek lessons from them in order to put our lives on a straight path, the unparalleled path of Islam. Let us all start off with a small step and let each one of us greet one of our brothers or sisters tomorrow Inshallah and try to catch up with them. May Allah (swt) give all of us the taufeeq to emulate the heart so that a new imaan and strength can be pumped in our lives as Muslims and as slaves of our Most Magnificent Creator. Ameen.


of and relating to...
Bint Abdul Khaliq said

As Salaamu alaikum

Awww Jazakillah sis...im so touched! But I don't deserve any credit,its all your effort and firstly Allah's help of course.

Masha Allah,the article was truly inspiring.It's amazing how we can bring Islam into everything that we do,so that everything becomes an Ibadat,even studying.

This Ummah needs to stand united,especially in these trying times.We need to hold on to our Deen in it's pristine form and live Islam in every aspect of our lives.If only we could feel this Islamic brotherhood as The Sahaba felt it-Insha Allah.

"May Allah (swt) give all of us the taufeeq to emulate the heart so that a new imaan and strength can be pumped in our lives as Muslims and as slaves of our Most Magnificent Creator. Ameen."

Thumma Ameen.

Was Salaam

on June 5, 2005 1:43 PM
asif said

Salaam:

Hope everyone is doing fine, Insha'Allah.

Here is a quote...
"Learning is the beginning of knowledge ...
knowledge is the beginning of understanding ...
understanding is the beginning of wisdom."

Ma'assalaama

on June 5, 2005 7:01 PM
Talal said

MashaAllah sister, another reason why Hidaya is so in need of your writing.

The first paragraph nearly put me to sleep, but the rest of piece awoke each of my brain cells... the synapses were firing so hard that it felt as though I just had a quintuple espresso.

Alhamdulillah that this Ummah is truly UNBREAKABLE (tip o' the kufi to the NJ Da'wah 2005 squad).. and like the cardiac cells, once there is excitement and action based on the Truth in one part of it, it spreads and spreads until the entire force of this Ummah makes the world shake with the magnanimous deen of Allah.

on June 6, 2005 1:21 AM
Salman said

Salam sister
As always, you see things for what they are and have the wisdom to apply them. Keep writing.

on June 6, 2005 10:15 PM
saleem said


That was very poignant writing, mashallah. Unfortunately, it is a theme that is lost upon much of the Ummah today.

"Allah did not give any man two hearts in his chest. "
[Al-Quran 33:4]

on June 7, 2005 1:01 AM
Justoju said

MashaAllah Nadia, wonderful insight as always...HidayaOnline has missed you :)

on June 7, 2005 1:52 AM
Donald Duck said

Assalamualaikum,
This was MashAllah a very good article indeed. Made me think about brother Amr, when he came to hug me after I gave a disastrous midterm last year. It was as if he was feeling my pain. I 'll always remain grateful to Amr, because there are plenty of people out there who are good . The Ummah is not dead yet , Alhamdulillah.

on September 4, 2005 10:09 PM
Donald Duck said

ok some of the words in the last comment didnt make sense, but u get the picture , right?

on September 4, 2005 10:11 PM
Mohammed Irfan Shariff said

Donald Duck getting all emotion with mickey mouse

this aint disney world brotha

on September 5, 2005 12:01 AM
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