Al-Nafs al-Mutma'inna

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From wikishia

Al-Nafs al-muṭmaʾinna (Arabic: النفْس المُطمَئِنّه, lit: the soul at peace or the reassured soul) is a state of the human soul or self at which one attains peace and assurance, without having inclinations to sins. The term appears in verse 27 of Qur'an 89.

The reassured soul is deemed the highest degree of soul in contrast to “al-nafs al-lawwama” (the self-critical or blaming soul) and “al-nafs al-ammara” (the commanding soul). The commanding soul inspires one to sins and wrongdoings. The self-critical soul blames itself for its wrongdoings. According to Muslim scholars, humans only have one soul, and the existence of commanding, self-critical, and reassured souls is not in conflict with the sameness of the human soul. Instead, these notions refer to various states and degrees of the same soul.

In some hadiths, the Verse of the Reassured Soul is cited, and then instances of such a soul are enumerated, such as Imam ʿAli (a), Imam al-Husayn (a) and those who believe in the Prophet (s) and his Household.

Sameness of Human Identity and Various Souls

According to Muslim scholars, a human person only has one soul or self. They argue that this is not contradicted by the existence of commanding, self-critical, and reassured souls. This is because the latter are different states and degrees of the same soul; that is, when the soul commands the evils, it comes to be called a commanding soul, and when it blames itself for a wrongdoing, it comes to be called a self-critical soul.

The Notion

The reassured soul is a state of the soul at which one persists in, and therefore acquires the habit of, complying with reason in avoiding the sins, and as a result, the soul attains peace and assurance.[1] This is a Quranic term, used in verse 27 of Qur'an 89.

The reassured soul is said to be contrasted to the commanding and self-critical souls. It has been said that the soul has degrees, the lowest being the commanding soul, at which one does not follow reason and tends to sins. At a higher degree is the self-critical soul, at which one is vigilant, blaming oneself for any wrongdoings. At the highest degree is the reassured soul.[2]

The Compatibility of Different Souls with the Oneness of Human Identity

According to Muslim scholars, the fact that man has different souls such as self-critical, commanding, and at peace, is not in conflict with the fact that man has the same soul or identity. They believe that man has only one soul or identity, and these notions denote different stages and states of the same soul.[3]

Instances of the Reassured Soul in Hadiths

In some hadiths, instances for the “reassured soul” in verse 27 of Qur'an 89 are enumerated. According to a hadith from Shawahid al-tanzil, these include Imam ʿAli (a),[4] and according to another hadith in Tafsir al-Qummi, they include Imam Husayn (a).[5] There is a hadith transmitted by al-Kulayni in al-Kafi in which a reassured soul is one that believes in the Prophet (s) and his Household.[6]

See Also


  1. Misbāḥ Yazdī, Āʾyīn-i parwāz, p. 27.
  2. Misbāḥ Yazdī, Āʾyīn-i parwāz, p. 26-27; Muṭahharī, Majmūʿa-yi āthār, vol. 3, p. 595.
  3. Majlisī, Biḥār al-anwār, vol. 67, p. 36-37; Muṭahharī, Majmūʿa-yi āthār, vol. 3, p. 595; Misbāḥ Yazdī, Akhlāq wa ʿirfān Islāmī, p. 8.
  4. Ḥaskānī, Shawāhid al-tanzīl, vol. 2, p. 429.
  5. Qummī, Tafsīr al-Qummī, vol. 2, p. 422.
  6. Kulaynī, al-Kāfī, vol. 3, p. 127-128.


  • Ḥaskānī, ʿUbayd Allāh b. ʿAbd Allāh al-.Shawāhid al-tanzīl li-qawāʿid al-tafḍīl. 1st Edition. Edited by Muḥammad Bāqir Maḥmūdī. Tehran: Majmaʿ Iḥyāʾ Farhang-i Islāmi affiliated to Wizārat-i Farhang wa Irshād-i Islāmī, 1411 AH.
  • Kulaynī, Muḥammad b. Yaʿqūb al-. Al-Kāfī. Edited by ʿAlī Akbar Ghaffārī & Muḥammad Ākhūndī. 4th Edition. Tehran: Dār al-Kutub al-Islāmīyya, 1407 AH.
  • Majlisī, Muḥammad Bāqir al-. Biḥār al-anwār al-jāmiʿa li-durar akhbār al-aʾimmat al-aṭhār. 3rd edition. Beirut: Dār Iḥyāʾ al-Turāth al-ʿArabī, 1403 AH.
  • Misbāḥ Yazdī, Muḥammad Taqī. Āʾyīn-i parwāz. Edited by Javād Muhaddithī. 9th Edition. Qom: Intishārāt-i Muʾassisa-yi Āmūzishī wa Pazhūhishī-yi Imām Khomeiniī, 1399 Sh.
  • Misbāḥ Yazdī, Muḥammad Taqī. Akhlāq wa ʿirfān Islāmī. Maʿrifat Journal. No 127, 1387 Sh.
  • Muṭahharī, Murtaḍā. Majmūʿa-yi āthār. Tehran: Intishārāt-i Ṣadrā, 1389 Sh.
  • Qummī, ʿAlī b. Ibrāhīm al-. Tafsīr al-Qummī. Edited by Ṭayyib Mūsawī Jazāʾrī. 4th Edition. Qom: Dār al-Kitāb, 1404 AH.
  • Ṭabāṭabāʾī, Sayyid Muḥammad Ḥusayn al-. Al-Mīzān fī tafsīr al-Qurʾān. 5th Edition. Qom: Daftar-i Intishārāt-i Islāmī, 1417 AH.