‘Reclaim Your Heart’ by Yasmin Mogahed is not just a self-help book but a reflective guide for the heart’s journey in the ocean of life.
It is a guide on how to prevent one’s heart from drowning out of feeling overwhelmed with grief and pain.
It is not only a guide but a manual on how cope, react, as well as heal, in situations of heartbreak and dismay.
‘Reclaim Your Heart’ is a book which pours advice from one heart to another on how to prepare for challenges in our lives by putting both the realities of life and its obstacles in perspective so that we may not only heal but reclaim and protect what is ours – our hearts: our soul’s most valued possession.
Yasmin Mogahed shares her reflections on liberating the heart and soul through the use of personal experiences as well as wisdoms derived from the Qur’an and prophetic traditions (Hadith) in a beautified and simple way for readers to be moved with understanding.
Her use of personal experiences allows readers to connect and resonate with her words wherein they hope to discover more. The references and use of analogies from the Qur’an and Hadith provide deepened insight which serve as a guide on how to reflect upon our lives while giving us hope that those in the past endured similar hardships but overcame them due to understanding life’s realities.
Yasmin’s reflections further show that she too is going through a journey with us; as she discovers we discover – discover how to reclaim our hearts to a safe abode.
Be patient after reflecting the real purpose of life.
The book is divided into sections delving into the harms of being too attached to the world and being too attached to a person out of love. It describes how one has unnecessary fear, anxieties, and heartache out of fear of losing whatever is obtained due to feeling too attached and not understanding the temporary nature of this world. Yasmin Mogahed provides solutions by redirecting us to focus on our relationship with Allah SWT and understanding the realities of this temporary life so that our hearts may not cling to material means.
The book, therefore, is a means to show how to live life without letting life own/trap our hearts and souls into a state of dismalness and hopelessness. The book thus gives hope and encouragement by showing that no matter how deep we sink we must also detach ourselves from life’s anchors in order to flow back to the surface and breathe – in order for our hearts to break free.
Yasmin Mogahed acknowledges the hardships faced when trying to break free from life’s shackles and waves. For example, she advises that when in despair one must be patient after reflecting the real purpose of life. That after understanding life’s temporary reality one must not be distracted by the glitters of this world. ‘Reclaim Your Heart, ’ is thus a means to free your heart from anxieties when facing life’s struggles by pointing out life’s deceptive traps. For this world is an illusory pleasure in which you might lose possessions or get hurt by people. However, if you are steadfast and mindful of Allah SWT with patience you will be able to easily cope without heartache.
‘Reclaim Your Heart, ’ is a must read for both Muslims and readers of other faiths alike in spite of the references to the Qur’an because we all, as humans, go through suffering and pain during which we all seek comfort and solutions. The advice given by Yasmin Mogahed is both practical and logical, and it is poured in a beautified way so that hearts may be soothed and souls may be moved with comfort and hope.
There are, however, sections towards the end of the book that delve into the status of women and into issues in the Muslim community where the state of the Muslim world is unraveled in reflection. Mogahed uses her life’s experiences with Qur’anic references to empower the status of women and explain the issues of modern day feminism while also addressing the issues in the Muslim world. She reflects on successes despite the downturns as a means to give hope for the further betterment of tomorrow.
After reading this book I feel readers will be bound to leave it with hearts comforted and hopeful out of feeling ease that there are solutions to avoid heartaches. Readers can also expect to feel left with clarity and better understanding as to why we feel the way we feel and how to not only prevent pain but grow. How to not only avoid loss but reclaim – reclaim our hearts into feeling whole.
O you who have believed, respond to Allah and to the Messenger when he calls you to that which gives you life. And know that Allah intervenes between a man and his heart and that to Him you will be gathered.
Surah Al-’Anfaal (The Spoils of War) 8:24
Sa’diyya Nesar lives with physical ‘disabilities’; she writes articles, prose, and poetry in hopes to uplift souls into living a better tomorrow. She posts on Tumblr and Facebook. The first part of this review of Reclaim Your Heart was published in the August mini issue of Young Muslimah Magazine.