Design a site like this with
Get started

Layers of Intent II

Photo by Alesia Kozik on

I was having this wonderful chat with my wife about intentions in Islam recently. It’s this whole idea that actions are by intentions. There was something she brought up that I thought would be interesting to share on this blog.

Let’s say you live in a country with a horrendous work-life balance that leaves you with little free time and so decide to move to a country with better. In terms of intentions, is that considered a good thing or bad?

I thought it was interesting because I don’t think the issue here is with good or bad, it’s more to do with how vague the intent is. Let’s say you move and get the free time you wished for. What will you do with it? If the intent afterwards is to lose yourself in drink and drugs for example, that balance does nothing for you. What you gained from the free time wasn’t peace of mind, but the potential for it, which you wasted, so it was bad. If it were so you could spend time studying and practicing the religion, that would be good.

Then there’s everything in between. You could say you wanted the comfort to face the next day because the balance feels like it’s too much, but if your idea of comfort was by indulging on your phone or on a game, yet your usual experience with doing so is a feeling that leaves you telling yourself there’s never enough time, you won’t benefit no matter where you go in the world. Let’s say you somehow came across a country that said, “No work, we’ll pay you instead”. Sounds amazing on the surface, but you could still find yourself without enough free time with that sort of intent, so you’re left with the same pain you originally had. On the other hand, you wanted a moment where you could go swimming every other day at a set time, you knew that swimming would generally refresh you for the day, it let you come back to the rest of life feeling ready to go and do your best wherever you are, you’re taking a step in the right direction.

There are layers to our intentions. Without that clarity, it’s very easy for anyone or anything to drop in and fill up that void for you. On one hand, sometimes you want to look to at an intent and think bigger. In terms of religion and seeking a better work-life balance, the bigger picture is whether you meant to indulge in this life or prepare for the next. There are also layers beneath the bigger picture, which tell you how to get there. There’s the idea of preparing for the next life, which you need to have a better work-life balance for, with which you can use to go swimming as you know that to be a strong means of refreshing yourself to strive for and do good for the rest of your day.

Photo by Sohel Patel on | It’s nice to look back at our intent and refresh ourselves on what’s important.

So my question from me to you today is, do you think we often struggle more so with see the bigger picture or the finer details?


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: