I begin in the name of Allah, The Most Gracious, The Most Merciful.
It is a plain fact that when one desires doing any act, the effort and struggle towards accomplishing such an act becomes bearable. One does not have to be supervised and constantly instructed to carry out the task.
Let me give you a simple example: when one feels hungry, the desire of the individual is to satisfy that hunger and therefore food will be sought. Another person does not need to remind the individual to fulfill his hunger.
Similarly, our desire towards obeying Allah (swt) should be likewise. We must feel hunger in fulfilling the commands that Allah (swt) has prescribed for us. Another person should not be needed to constantly remind us about our duties to Allah (swt).
Just as the stomach aches and rumbles upon feeling emptiness, our hearts must also ache when the obedience and remembrance of our Merciful Lord is forsaken. Upon the stomach being filled with food, the body feels satisfaction and strength, similarly, when the heart is filled with devotion and submission to the Lord, a spiritual satisfaction and strength is also felt.
Such a desire can be created by avoiding becoming too attached to this temporary world. By thinking of our actual and eternal place of dwelling in the gardens of Paradise, one begins to feel detached from this false temporary world.
Sadly, our state has become on the contrary. The example of our behaviour in this world is clearly illustrated in those hadiths. And with those I shall end:
مَن غَلَبَ هَواهُ / He who Overcomes his Desires
– The Prophet (SAWA) said, ‘Allah Almighty said, ‘By My Might and Exaltedness…no sooner does a servant prefer My desire over his own desire than I protect him with My angels, and charge the heavens and the earth with his sustenance. I will be behind every transaction he makes with every trader, and the world will only come to him forcefully.’
[al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 335, no. 2]
– Imam Ali (AS) said, ‘Whoever overcomes his carnal desire his intellect will become manifest.’
[Ghurar al-Hikam, no. 7953]
– Imam Ali (AS) said, ‘He who cannot control his desire cannot control his intellect.’
[Ghurar al-Hikam, no. 8995]
– Imam Ali (AS) said, ‘In controlling desire there is immunity from every deficiency.’
[Ghurar al-Hikam, no. 4354]
– Imam Ali (AS) said, ‘Repelling one’s desire is the best way to eradicate it, and fulfilling it only strengthens it.’
[Ghurar al-Hikam, no. 5390]
– Imam al-Baqir (AS) said, ‘Allah Almighty has said, ‘By My Might and Exaltedness, My Greatness and Loftiness, and by My High Status, no sooner does a servant prefer My desire over his own desire than I will suffice him in his losses, I will guarantee his sustenance upon the Heavens and the earth, and I will be behind his every transaction with every trader.’
[al-Kafi, v. 2, p. 137, no. 1]
I end by making a supplication:
Oh Allah (swt) create in us a deep desire and yearning to practice Your every Command. Create in us a desperate hatred with every form of sinning. Oh Allah (swt) save us from becoming attached to this temporary world. Oh Allah (swt) make us desire our abode in Paradise, hence easing the task of working towards attaining Paradise. Oh Allah (swt) give us death when we are prepared and when are heart are filled with love for You.