Dark clothes do not show dirt easily, even if the person wearing them roles around in mud, the dirt may not be readily noticeable; in contrast, white clothes easily reveal any dirt on them. Even if there is slight dirt around a person wearing white clothes, it easily finds its way onto them and shows itself. The darker the clothes, the more insensitive they are to dirt, whereas the brighter the clothes, the more sensitive they are, just like the human soul!

A person who is trying to purifying his heart soon notices that, just like the white clothes, his heart has also become more sensitive. As he makes progress in this endeavour, he gets ever more sensitive to things that may pollute his soul. For such a person, the “don’t do” list is much longer in contrast to the one not too concerned about purifying himself. While for the latter, only religiously illegal acts (‘Haram’) are in the “don’t do” list, for the former, anything that he considers unworthy of a human being (as God’s deputy and servant), is in that list. Such a person does not allow his eyes to focus on everything that they see nor does he allow his ears to pay attention to all that is uttered in his presence; he is very cautious about what he says and does not allow his mind to concentrate on every thought that arises in it. This person protects his soul extremely delicately, like the one who protects his new white clothes when walking down a muddy path.

More purification demands more protection, just as brighter clothes demand more protection from dirt. This is Taqwa and God says, “Verily, the best of you before God is the one who has more Taqwa” (49:13).

(Dr Abdullah Rahim)