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Enhancing your memory

Enhancing your memory

With the Pen of his eminence Ayatollah Seyed Adil Alalawy

Many people complain about the problem of forgetting and the inability to memorize. Especially, the academic and seminary students trying to achieve this goal one way or the other. This issue may often be as a result of a natural, psychological, or even a spiritual cause. It may even be due to constant sinning, walking in between women or laughing in the graveyards. It is mentioned in the noble sources that if these acts are performed then its effect will reap forgetfulness and it will lessen the capacity to memorize.

There are specific learned practices and habits if applied, will enable the human being to gain a larger capacity to memorize, a sharper, and alert mind. Among these practices and habits may include reciting specific words or supplications, recitation of the Holy Quran, medical remedies that may include syrups or herbs. Certain mind exercises may apply.

In regards to the recitation of a special spiritual remedy that has been tried by many people of concern includes the verbal praising of the family of the holy household by repeating: “ Allahuma Sali ala Muhammadan wa ali Muhammad “.

Firstly, one must purify his intentions. Secondly, purify his heart by the removal of bad habits and sins. It is vital to do these steps to pave the way for protecting the consistent gaining of knowledge, because the King of the body is the heart, therefore if the heart is fixed the whole body is fixed. It is not possible for light to enter a dark heart, therefore if one would like to increase his memory he would first have to avoid sinning and eventually stop sinning completely. This is because sinning upon sinning without asking for forgiveness, and without replacing the sins with good deeds; acts such as these will guarantee the effect of one to forget, and lower his capacity to memorize, as well as the ability to have a sharp mind.

Khizr son of Ali (A): was informed of a man that forgets and remembers and said: “the heart of a man is truth, and in this truth has levels, therefore if he began to praise the holy progeny of the holy household, as a result, those veils will be removed and as a result will make the truths apparent. With this remembrance, it will illuminate the heart of that man and will help him remember what he forgot, however, if he does not follow through with this remembrance, as a result, will gain veils in the face of the truths, and will eventually make the heart dark, forgetting what he has remembered.”

Here I will provide various practices that will increase ones memory even if one has increased his age, as one is distressed with old age and the effects of old age such as forgetfulness. We ask Allah (SWT) the One Whose help is sought. 

Practices include:

1. Reciting all the 99 names of Allah (SWT) is recommended however reciting certain names have special benefits such as the names of “al-Rahman” meaning the most gracious or “al-Raheem” meaning the most merciful (recite 90 times). The recitation of these words is highly recommended to increase ones memory and remove the habit of forgetfulness. One must become consistent for years, and over time ones memory will increase with the permission of Allah (SWT). 

2. One must first be in a state of purity meaning one has to have performed ablution. Secondly, write the verses from the holy Quran: (2:255) with rose water and saffron on your right hand, then lick with the tongue 7 times, this act will increase in one’s memory capacity.

3. Whoever writes this supplication with rose water and saffron then drinks it before breakfast, with the permission of Allah (SWT) he will memorize what he hears, the supplication is as follows:


                بسم الله نوّر بكتابك قلبي وإشرح به صدري وأطلق به لساني بحولك وقوتك لاحول ولا قوة إلّا بالله العلي العظيم

“In the name of Allah , oh Allah enlighten my heart and expand my chest and relax my tongue with your will and power, there is no will or power except through you oh Allah the most high the most great.”

However, as I have mentioned before, if you doubt the effects of these recitations it will not work and one will not gain any benefits. 

Before reading any academic text for example one may recite this supplication to increase his memory:

اللّهم أُرزقني فهم النبيين وحفظ المرسلين وإلهام الملائكة المقربين آمين يا رب العالمين

“Oh Allah grant me the comprehension abilities of the prophets, and the memorization abilities of the messengers, and the intuition of the close angels, oh lord of the worlds. “

In the supplication book of “Mifateeh al-Jinan”; “the keys to the heavens”, in the general section of daily practices: after the daily supplications recite the supplication that was taught by the prophet Muhammad (PBUH) in regards to the memory:

سبحان من لا يعتدي على أهل مملكته، سبحان من لا يأخذ أهل الأرض بألوان العذاب، سبحان الرؤوف الرّحيم، اللّهم إجعل لي في قلبي نوراً وبَصَراً وفَهمَاً وعلماً إنّك على كل شيء قدير

In the name of Allah the most kind the most merciful.

Glory be to Him who does not treat the citizens of His kingdom unjustly.

Glory be to Him who does not let the torment and pain come suddenly upon mankind.

Glory be to the compassionate the merciful.

O Allah, fill my heart with true enlightenment, wisdom, understanding, and knowledge.

Surely you are able to do all things.


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