There is a big blunder in secular concept about psychology. They have forgotten the most influence factor affecting human kind. That is unseen factor. However, secular perspective is based on facts that can be verified, it doesn’t accept ghayb as addition information to study human being. Hence, incomplete understanding and observation will occur. Even more, it will be bias in every research conducted by psychologist.

Allah azza wa jalla have said in surah Al-Anfal verse 24

وَاعْلَمُوا أَنَّ اللَّهَ يَحُولُ بَيْنَ الْمَرْءِ وَقَلْبِهِ وَأَنَّهُ إِلَيْهِ تُحْشَرُونَ

“And know that Allah intervenes between a man and his heart and that to Him you will be gathered”.[1]

Ibn Abbas had commented this verse that Allah intervenes between the believers and the disbelievers a faith.[2]

Then, Rasululllah shalallahu ‘alaihi wassalam had told us that our hearts is under control of God.

وعن شهر بن حوشب قال‏:‏ قلت لأم سلمة، رضي الله عنها، يا أم المؤمنين ما كان أكثر دعاء رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم، إذا كان عندك‏؟‏ قالت‏:‏ كان أكثر دعائه‏:‏ ‏ “‏يا مقلب القلوب ثبت قلبي على دينك‏”‏ ‏(‏‏(‏رواه الترمذي، وقال‏:‏ حديث حسن‏)‏‏)‏‏.‏

I asked Umm Salamah (May Allah be pleased with her), “O Mother of the Believers! Which supplication did the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) make frequently when he was in your house?” She said: “He (ﷺ) supplicated frequently: ‘Ya muqallibal-qulubi, thabbit qalbi ‘ala dinika (O Controller of the hearts make my heart steadfast in Your religion).”[3]

Accordingly, I fully agree with definition of Islamic Psychology which said by Dr. Aisha Utz in her book. Islamic Psychology is “The study of the soul; the ensuing behavioral, emotional, and mental processes; and both the seen and unseen aspects that influence these elements”.[4] Using this definition, we can obtain Psychology as intact and flawless subject. Because, it is very impossible to separate something from something that cannot be separated from it, then we make a study from it (as a part) and conclude it (as a whole). This is extremely weird and confusing to be accepted by our mind logically.

It is certainly, the science that cannot be applied is considered as useless knowledge. However, when Islamic conceptualization has been elaborated by Psychology, this subject will be deemed as a perfect and thorough studies. As we realize together, the use of different basis would result in different interpretations.

First of all, I want to give a bit example to illustrate how Islamic Psychology can be applied in our life and can also lead to differences in interpretation. We are able to see in case about diseases. Psychoanalysis will answer that source of disease is originated from inner conflict and human desires which is not actualized. Otherwise, Using Islamic view, Psychology can really see mental illness is not solely due to the disruption of neurosis and psychosis, but it also involves the aspect of sins[5].

Hence, Rasulullah shalallahu ‘alaihi wassalam said:

الْبِرُّ حُسْنُ الْخُلُقِ وَالإِثْمُ مَا حَاكَ فِى نَفْسِكَ وَكَرِهْتَ أَنْ يَطَّلِعَ عَلَيْهِ النَّاسُ

“Righteousness is in good character/morality, and wrongdoing is that which wavers in your soul, and which you dislike people finding out about.”[6]

So, it shows us that sins can directly give an effect in our life and behavior.

Secondly, Abraham Maslow (1943) stated that people are motivated to achieve certain needs. When one need is fulfilled a person seeks to fulfil the next one, and so on. Maslow’s hierarchy of needs can be described as five stage pyramids. This five stage model can be divided into basic (or deficiency) needs (e.g. physiological, safety, love, and esteem) and growth needs (self-actualization)[7]. But unfortunately, It cannot clearly explain why many people performs five prayers every time and why many people dare to strive (Jihad) in holy war. Because, when they are asked, they will answer “It is sincerely for Allah azza wa jalla”. So, it cannot be explained well by a hierarchy of five needs. In fact, performing five prayers is not our psychological needs or security needs, because if we are not performing prayers, will we be unsafe? Nevertheless, why many people still do prayers? Otherwise, it is not uncommon that many people are feeling anxious and misgivings in their prayers. It shows us that sincere cannot perfectly explain with hierarchy of five needs.

Finally, Islamic Psychology may truly lead us in daily life to realize that there’s something which always contribute more in our motivation to do. It is unseen factor. Applying Islamic Psychology also remember us that whatever we want to do, we are always being watched and being recorded by angel of Allah.

Because we all know that Allah azza wa jalla said:

إِنَّ اللَّهَ كَانَ عَلَيْكُمْ رَقِيبًا

“Indeed Allah is ever, over you, an Observer.”[8]

Alhamdulillahilladzi bi ni’matihi tatimmush sholihaat, wa shallallahu ‘ala nabiyyina Muhammad wa ‘ala alihi wa shohbihi wa sallam.




[2] Taisiru al-Aliyyul Qadir li Ikhtishari Tafsir Ibn Katsir, Muhammad Nasib Ar-Rifai. Chapter 2. Pg 504-505. Gema Insani Press.

[3] Riyad as-Salihin. he Book of Du’a (Supplications) Book 17, Hadith 1489 available in accessed at 2.35 PM July 9, 2014

[4] Psychology from the Islamic Perspective. Dr. Aisha Utz. IOU (lecturer book in PSY 101).

[5] Psikologi Islam Mengitegrasikan Ilmu dan Iman. Prof Dr Abdul Mujib (2010). Available in accessed at 4.34 PM. July 9, 2014

[6] HR. Muslim no. 2553. Available in accessed at 4.45 PM. July 9, 2014

[7] accessed at 4.40 PM. July 9, 2014

[8] Surah An-nisaa: 1 available in

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10 Syawal 1435 H / 6 Agustus 2014 Pukul 16.47

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Deni Setiawan

Reviewed by :  Soha Rajeev (Tutorial Assistant in Islamic Psychology 101)