Everyday life of a medical student.

 

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My day in photos:
1) Woke up at 06:00 and went for a run
2) packing lunch and making breakfast: i had quiche and lasagne packed for a long day at school
3) had time to sit down and go thru my day and drink a cup of tea with my breakfast
4)after the lectures where done I went to the study rooms to try and get thru some notes
5) working on some old lectures that I still hadn’t managed to finish
6) ended up at home earlier then I thought because it got so warm at school, and I changed my background to get new inspiration
7) after dinner( my lasagna 👌🏻) I went back to studying again, and then did the stupid mistake of starting a new tv show.. 1 week before my exam

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Medicine: The Discovery of How “Hearts Find Peace”

Another branch of science affected by the collapse of atheist suppositions was medicine.

According to results compiled by David B. Larson and his team at the National Institute for Healthcare Research, a comparison among Americans in relation to their observance of religious duties yielded very interesting results. The risk of arteriosclerotic heart disease for men who attended church frequently was just 60 percent of that for men who were infrequent church attendees; among women, suicide was twice as high among infrequent as among frequent church attenders; smokers who ranked religion as very important in their lives were over seven times less likely to have normal diastolic pressure readings than were those who did not.


Dr. Herbert Benson of the Harvard Faculty of Medicine

Secular psychologists generally explain such phenomena as having a psychological cause. In this sense, faith raises a person’s morale and contributes to his or her well-being. There may be some truth in this explanation, but if we look more closely, we see something much more dramatic: Belief in God is far stronger than any other influence on one’s morale. In comprehensive research on the relationship between religious belief and physical health, Dr. Herbert Benson of the Harvard Medical School came up with some interesting results. Although he has no religious faith, Benson concluded that faith in God and worship had a far more positive effect on human health than could be observed in anything else. Benson concludes that he has “found that faith quiets the mind like no other form of belief.”

Why is there such a special relation among faith, the human spirit, and the body? Benson, a secular researcher, stated that the human mind and body are “wired for God.”

This fact, which the medical world is slowly beginning to notice, is a secret revealed in the Qur’an: “Only in the remembrance of God can the heart find peace.” (Qur’an, 13:28) The reason why those who believe in God, pray to Him and trust in Him are physically and mentally healthier than others is that they behave in harmony with their nature. Philosophical systems opposed to human nature always bring pain, sorrow, anxiety, and depression in their wake.

The basic source of religious people’s peace is that they act in order to gain God’s approval. In other words, this peace is the natural result of listening to the voice of one’s conscience. People who live the morality of religion simply “to be more at peace” or “to be healthier” cannot live according to the morality of religion; those who act with this intention cannot find peace in its true sense. God well knows what people store in their hearts and what they reveal. Peace of mind comes only by being sincere and attempting to gain God’s approval. God commands:

So set your face firmly toward the [true] religion, as a pure natural believer, God’s natural pattern on which He made mankind. There is no changing God’s creation. That is the true religion-but most people do not know it. (Qur’an, 30:30)

In light of these discoveries, modern medicine is starting to become aware of this truth. As Patrick Glynn says, “contemporary medicine is clearly moving in the direction of acknowledging dimensions of healing beyond the purely material.”

Why Should Medical Students Blog?

As a medical student, you probably have a very busy calendar. Blogging might seem like just another responsibility to jam into your schedule. And yet, it doesn’t have to be like that. You could always devote a little bit of time once a week to the blog. And despite your trouble, you would actually be creating a very useful tool, both for yourself and for others. Here are a few reasons why you should consider blogging about your experiences in medical school.

 

To Build Community

 

Blogging about your education is a great way to extend your learning community beyond the physical boundaries of your particular medical school. As you write about your medical-related interests, new things you have learned, and your troubles, other students can read and react to your thoughts. Then you can react in turn, thus continuing the conversation. You essentially expand your community to include not only the students with whom you study, but also students in other programs around the world. By joining this community, ideally you can strengthen it with your own ideas and interactions with others. Through the transfer of knowledge and experiences, the community can improve as a whole.

 

To Reflect on Your Experiences

 

Another important aspect of learning is the act of self-reflection. Through self-reflection, students evaluate their learning process, their successes and failures, and their plans to move forward. Self-reflection is a professional tool as well, and many highly successful organizations use it to figure out how they could do a better job next time: aviation crews, athletic teams, and military units often debrief after they experience significant events. So reflecting upon your day’s work and education will help you tackle the next challenge.

 

To Create a Guidebook

 

To a certain set of readers, your blog could work as a guidebook to medical school. Prospective students, new students, and those who have just begun considering a career in medicine all could benefit from reading the thoughts, opinions, and worries of a current medical student working through the program. Such a blog might implicitly help prospective students prepare for the rigorous work of medical school. Through your experiences, others can learn what to expect.

 

Of course, you can adjust the focus of your blog however you like. You can mix and match these purposes, or you can limit your writing to just one. The goal is that the blog be useful in some way, and not become busywork, something you feel like you have to do. If that happens, eventually you’ll neglect the blog, and it will no longer be worthwhile to yourself and to other readers. So think carefully about whether or not blogging while you’re in school is right for you. If you think you can somehow balance your own education with writing a blog that benefits you and your readers, then maybe blogging will be perfect for you.

By Dr Harlina’s Survival Tips for Medical Students : Tips no. 1 – 50

Dedicated to MEDICAL STUDENTS all over the world – may you survive the challenges ahead.

( By Dr Harlina Halizah Siraj ; ex UKM medic student 1985 – 91)
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 1 – Thank Allah (God) for this golden opportunity. Allow yourself to be trained with the basic medical knowledge, skills, attitudes and behaviours that are essential for the profession. If you’re a caring, responsible, unselfish and emphatic person, half the battle is won. If you’re not, it’s a long way ahead!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 2 – Do not be afraid to make mistakes now. As students, you learn thro’ your mistakes and corrections by your teachers. If you’re scolded or criticized for your mistakes, be strong. You could only be hurt or affected as much as you have allowed yourself to be!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 3 – Look forward for your exams, instead of being depressed over them. Two reasons for that; first – exams are TRADEMARK of medical schools (they are here to stay!), secondly – they serve as signboards, telling you how close (or how far) you’re to the destiny. Enjoy & cherish them!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 4 – Enhance your passion & hunger for knowledge. You might have your own learning style, but you can always switch your approach from superficial to deep. Learn because you really wanna know, not for simply passing exams (superficial approach)!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 5 – Appreciate the cooperative patients who have agreed to allow you to examine them. Give them their due respect. Despite their pain and misery, they let you `disturb’ their rest/sleep. Promise yourself that you will be a competent doctor one day, so all the patients’ sacrifice for you would not go wasteful!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 6 – Apply active participation in your learning process. Force yourself to come forward the next time your clinical teacher looks for a volunteer to clerk a patient, perform a physical exam, assist in a procedure or operation. You will be rewarded with a great sense of achievement, much more than your passive friends – even if you gonna get some criticism/ negative feedback at the end.
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 7 – Do not procrastinate, submit assignments before deadline. Do not postpone till the very last minute, no matter how tempting it is to delay. Put in your best effort in everything you do. Be exceptional, not just a mediocre!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 8 – Ask questions, clarify any area of doubt. Make it a must to ask your teacher before a teaching session ends. Keep asking – there are no such things as stupid questions – only stupid answers! A lot of active, critical thinking must come before asking…it might be too much for some, eh? No wonder you all are no longer asking these days!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 9 – Never leave God behind in your pursuit to be the men/women of medicine. As healers, we are the INSTRUMENT of God’s mercy. Continue your strive to be close to Him, for you will definitely need Him endlessly. It is through your hands, words, eyes and smiles that God is going to cure and care for the sick and fallen. May you deserve such honour!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 10 – Keep in touch with your parents & family. They’re your best support. Update them with your progress. Include them into your busy, busy stressed-up life. Share with them your sorrow, but convince them that you’ll be fine with their prayers tagged along.
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 11 – Try your best to make your teachers feel respected and appreciated. Take what is good from them, whilst forgive them for their shortcomings. Assist your teachers by getting actively involved in teaching learning activities. Make them interactive, lively, fun and enjoyable. Help your teachers, they need you to be on board!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 12 – Strengthen your friendship with peers, seniors & juniors. Don’t be a loner. Help one another always. Study in a group, studying alone limits your understanding & perspective. The best way to learn is to teach! So, teach one another – you’ll be amazed by the result of such teamwork.
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 13 – Spend your holiday/semester break with your family. Visit your grandparents, uncles, aunts & cousins. Let them see the `new, better, matured’ future family doctor whom they’re so proud of. Impress them with your improved communication & interpersonal skills. Listen attentively to their complaints, groans & moans. Gently remind them, you’re not yet licensed to treat…
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 14 – Manage your time wisely. Sleep early and wake up fresh. Do not compromise your sleeping time by spending too much time online. Chronic sleep deprivation will only result in higher level of stress! Stop the vicious cycle, NOW!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 15 – Pluck your courage to greet ALL your teachers when you meet them at the corridors/cafetaria/lifts etc. Don’t expect them to remember your name, unless you’re really exceptional. They might not be smiling back to you, but your consistent greetings will somewhat make your face familiar to them. At least they realize that you EXIST….and that really matters.
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 16 – Train yourself to serve others always. After all, medical profession is about public servitude. Your calling is to go all out to help, assist and facilitate others. Altruism (placing other’s interest before one self) is the keystone of medicine. Without it, the whole arch of medicine collapses!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 17 – Overcome your fear, sadness and uncertainties with constant reminder that what you’re aiming for is not something ordinary. Training to be a medical doctor pushes you to your limits! Be warned, the sailing is not going to be smooth, it’s an uphill climb, a lifelong commitment.
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 18 – Learn to be genuinely interested in your patient’s life – not simply his/her diseases. Remember this equation : Patient = Person + Disease. While learning how to doctor the disease, never forget to doctor the PERSON, who is made up of body, mind, heart & soul.
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 19 – Jump out of the bed with enthusiasm and excitement each morning. Promise yourself that you’re going to make full use of the many golden opportunities in front of you. Say your morning prayers consistently, without fail. Look into the mirror and say it out loud : I believe I can be a better person today, better than yesterday, InsyaAllah!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 20 – Be emotionally intelligent. Manage your emotions wisely. Remember, emotion is the window to your thoughts. When you’re feeling happy and motivated, you’re thinking positive thoughts. When you’re feeling down and demoralized, your head is full with negative thoughts. Ask yourself, how much do you want to ALLOW the trigger/stimulus to affect you emotionally…it’s your own choice!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 21 – Stop being a perfectionist, for one good reason – no human being can be perfect! Be kind to your self, please. Set an achievable target, strive to overcome challenges and acknowledge your own achievement, no matter how small. Wanting to excel will motivate you, aiming for perfection will only drain you out DRY!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS: Tip no. 22 – Focus on your study. Do not allow distractions to interfere with your concentration. Apply deep learning strategy – focus on YOUR own pumping heart when you’re studying CVS, on YOUR own thinking brain when you’re reading about neurons & synapses! Studying is not supposed to be burdening, it should be liberating, enjoyable and empowering.
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS: Tip no. 23 – Fight your laziness with this reminder – nobody likes to consult a LAZY doctor, not even yourself! Being lazy is a waste of resources, a thief of your precious time and a betrayal to your potentials. Come on, grab the books, spend a lot of time in the wards/clinics and finish off your calls. Say goodbye to laziness TODAY!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS: Tip no. 24 – Seek professional help ASAP once you detect symptoms of depression & anxiety within yourself. Lack of energy, loss of interest, insomnia, isolation and crying spells…to name a few. Help your friends with such symptoms – esp. if they’re still in denial. Life as medical students can be very challenging & frightening, so monitor your progress closely!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS: Tip no. 25 – Be exceptionally strong in your spiritual development. A doctor’s soul needs constant enhancement and purification. It’s your pure and sincere intention that serves as a shining beacon in the dark, showing you the way. Do not ever neglect your soul, or else you’ll get easily de-motivated, demoralized, derailed and defeated!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS: Tip no. 26 – Optimize your studying time to obtain as much medical knowledge
as possible. Take up all opportunities to sharpen your generic and medical skills. Equip yourself with appropriate manners and attitudes. Do not just aim for a borderline pass. How would you like consulting a doctor who only knows 5 out of 10 causes of acute abdominal pain?
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS: Tip no. 27 – Take care of your love life, if you have decided you’re ready to commit for one. If it’s taking away too much of your time and energy, simply trying to make the other person happy – I guess you know where you’re heading to. Be wise in managing your priorities, first thing first! If things between you and him/her turn sour, do not mourn too long. Pick up the pieces and move on.
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS: Tip no. 28 – Return to your old schools if you have the opportunities to do so. Meet up your old teachers and motivate the juniors to follow your footsteps. Walk down those familiar corridors and bring back good memories, of how confident and enthusiastic you were feeling, once upon a time! Wonder where have all those feelings gone to? When did you exactly lose them? Work hard to regain those feelings.
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS: Tip no. 29 – Pray that you are going to do everything better today, InsyaAllah. Promise yourself that today is going to better than yesterday and tomorrow should be better than today. That’s the only way to improve and move forward. If you’re doing otherwise, whereby today is worse than yesterday – you’re really regressing, not progressing here!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS: Tip no. 30 – Pay attention to the needs of your body, mind, heart & soul. When your body is tired & your mind is exhausted, find rest by uplifting your emotion & spirit. Do not drown your soul with fake entertainment – providing temporary relief. Handle your fragile emotion with care.
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS: Tip no. 31 – Never forget to ask your parents to continue praying for you. Never hurt their feelings, never ever neglect them. Call home once every two or three days, no matter how busy you are. Spend time with them during semester breaks. You might be lucky enough to overheard their prayers during the tahajud (early morning prayers)….
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS: Tip no. 32 – Practice makes perfect. Volunteer to present your clinical cases to your teachers. Perform physical examination of body systems regularly in front of your consultants or specialists. Polish up your skills. Build up your confidence and competence. There is no shortcuts to success & excellence!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS: Tip no. 33 – Go to bed before 12MN and wake up early. Do you know that the quality of one hour of sleep before midnight is comparable to two hours of sleep after 12MN? Let your body rest, achieve deep REM sleep, allow your circadian rhythm to flow. Wake up fresh the next morning -ready to face the world!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS: Tip no. 34 – Always be a considerate roommate & a helpful friend. Never hurt another individual with your words & actions. Be well-known as a kind person, rather than as someone rude and disrespectful. Good virtues strengthen your inner core, negativeness will only weaken and erode your existing potentials.
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 35 – Be your own best friend, and love thyself. Do not harm the precious soul that is now within you. Once you regret being you, and wonder why you’re not someone else, push the pause button! There shall be no regret, for who you are now is more important than who you were before, because your future is dependent on what you decide now, for your very own self!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 36 – Find practical solutions to your problems. Do not simply ignore or sweep them under the carpet. Seek help & assistance from those around you. Have faith – there is no problem too big to be solved. Problem solving is a ‘a must-have’ generic skill for medical students!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 37 – Overcome your weaknesses with effective & practical steps. If you’re not proficient in English, find a private tutor among your friends/teachers & start conversing in English. Don’t be shy! Learn to laugh at your own mistakes, but don’t forget to improve the next time.
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 38 – Give your self a break today. Do something different than the usual routine. How about a quiet stroll down the park? Watch the leaves fall, smell the freshly-cut grass, listen to the birds chirping and look up the blue clear sky. Be grateful to Allah, for the opportunity to witness His magnificent glory & be a part of His Greatness!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 39 – Plan your study schedule accordingly. Allocate time to plan strategically, rather than simply studying haphazardly. It does not stop there – the biggest challenge is to discipline yourself to follow the schedule/plan. You can do it! Correction – you HAVE to do it! If you really want to survive med school…
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 40 – Be well-known as a kind, pleasant and caring person. If you’re not known as that, it’s never too late to change. Wondering whether you really have to? Well, that’s my suggestion. Kindness is the buffer of human’s sufferings. As doctors, we should have plenty of that.
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 41- Be gently reminded, as much as you’re frustrated with your teachers sometimes, so do the teachers. Help them to help you out. Be active and responsive during teaching sessions, speak out your doubts. Ask questions, ask questions, ask questions! Don’t just stand there like a dead log! Don’t give your teachers that glassy, empty, perplexed look each time they demand answers from you! Arrrggh…
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 42 – Do not be discouraged by what your seniors told you – this posting is hectic, the lecturers are fierce and malignant, the patients are terrible & not cooperative, etc. The information might be useful to prepare you, but do not allow it to shape your perception until you go through the posting rotation yourself!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no 43 – Look at the brighter side if you happen to fail a test/exam/evaluation today. Reflect why you failed, get feedback from your examiner(s). If you’re still considered `incompetent’ in the area evaluated, be grateful that you still have the chances to improve. Now is the right time for you to make mistakes (not blunders) – because you have teachers around to correct you!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 44 – For goodness sake, stop studying medicine just becoz’ you wanna pass exams! How many times do I need to emphasize : exams are merely signposts by the roadside, in your journey to reach the destiny? Learn becoz’ you NEED to know! And you know why that is so very important. Very soon, you are going to be doctors. Are you prepared to shoulder such great responsibility?
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 45 – Never forget to pray for other medical students all over the world, who are currently struggling to survive medic schools, just like you! You all share the same concerns, worries & uncertainties. Each of you can already start writing your autobiography by now. Yeah, why not do that? It’s a great de-stressing mechanism, guys!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 46 – Listen carefully to what your patients tell you. You will learn more than just about the disease signs & symptoms. Most often than not, you will end up reflecting on your own life journey, wondering if you will end up like the patient you have just clerked. Learn from others and you’ll be a wiser person each day.
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 47 – Find your own de-stressing mechanism. Anything, just make sure it is not too risky & daring. Look out for your own space & solace. Friends can help. But at times, they may become too loud, noisy and distractive. If that is so, gently excuse yourself for a while. Don’t worry, your friends will surely understand that you need time for yourself.
 
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 48 – Improve your communication and interpersonal skills, even if you feel you’re already good at that. Mind you, it requires a special skill to communicate with those who are sick, ill and diseased. Learn how to listen, talk and touch them. Listen carefully to all their complaints, sorrow and regrets. Soothe them with your kind words, caring facial expression and gentle touch. When it is your turn to be a patient soon, you would want a doctor who has mastered all those skills to look after you!
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 49 – Do not walk around with a miserable frown on your face, as if the sky is gonna fall on your head! Look up, walk straight, pull up your shoulders and wear a friendly smile. Greet and acknowledge people with cheerful salam. Bring the colourful rainbow with you, brighten up the day for others. You’ll be surprised to experience the vibrant, positive energy returning back to you.
 
SURVIVAL TIPS FOR MEDICAL STUDENTS : Tip no. 50 – Keep reminding yourself that you are currently training to be a future medical doctor. Whatever/Whoever had motivated you to take up medicine is not as important as what drives your desire to learn and discover the profession now. We’re living in realtime, not in the past. Look forward and focus, once in a while you can glance into your `rear mirror’ to remind you of the past and see who is catching up with you. Be inspired to become one of the best doctors around.

Loves,
Dr. Har

The Extraordinary Design of the Eye

 
Unreal combination of Human and Cat Eye

The human eye can distinguish about 10 million colors.
When you look around you out in the open air or in a broad field, you can readily see all objects farthest from you and closest to you in all their colors, shapes, and sizes. This view, which you have obtained without making any effort, is produced as a result of numerous complex reactions and interactions in your body. Let us take a closer look at these complex operations.

Macro-structures of the Eye

The human eye has a fully automatic mechanism that works perfectly. It is made up of the combination of 40 different basic parts and all these parts have critical functions in the process of seeing. Any defect or disability in even one of these parts would make seeing impossible.

The transparent layer in the front part of the eye is the cornea. Right behind it lies the iris. Giving the eye its color, the iris adjusts its size automatically according to the sharpness of light thanks to the muscles attached to it. For example, if we are in a dark place, the iris widens to take in as much light as possible. When light increases, it shrinks to decrease the amount of light entering the eye.

The automatic adjustment system in the iris works like this: The moment light enters the eye, a nerve impulse travels to the brain and gives a message about the existence and degree of brightness of the light. The brain immediately sends back a signal and gives orders as to how much the muscles around the iris should contract.

Another eye mechanism working parallel to this structure is the lens. The duty of the lens is to focus the light entering the eye onto the retina layer in the back of the eye. Thanks to the movement of the muscles around the lens, light rays entering the eye from different angles and distances can always be focused onto the retina.

All the systems we have mentioned are far smaller yet far more superior to the mechanical devices designed by the use of the latest technology in order to imitate the eye.

Even the most advanced artificial imaging system in the world remains extremely simple and primitive compared to the eye.

When we think of the effort and knowledge that has been put into developing these artificial imaging systems, we can get a grasp on the superior creation that has gone into designing the eye.

Micro-world of the Eye

If we examine a single cell in the eye at the microscopic level, the superiority of this creation will be further revealed.

Let us suppose that we look at a crystal bowl full of fruit. The light rays coming from this bowl to our eye pass through the cornea and iris and are focused on the retina by the lens.

So, what happens in the retina so that the retinal cells can perceive light?

When light particles, also called photons, strike the cells in the retina, they produce a cascading effect like a row of dominoes carefully arranged one after the other. The first of these dominoes in the retinal cells is a molecule called 11-cis-retinal. When a photon of light interacts with it, this molecule changes shape.

This forces a change in the shape of another protein, rhodopsin, to which it is tightly bound. Now, rhodopsin takes such a form that it can stick to another protein, called transducin, which was already present in the cell, but with which it could not previously interact due to the incompatibility of its shape.

 
Allah created 10 types of Eyes with resolving power, and 96% of animal species possess a complex optical system.

After this union, another molecule called GDP also joins in this group. So at this stage we have two proteins, rhodopsin and transducin, in addition to a chemical molecule called GDP bound together.

The process, however, has just begun. The compound called GDP now has the proper form to bind to another protein called phospho-diesterase, which always exists in the cell. After this bonding, the shape of the molecule that is produced will trigger a mechanism that will start a series of chemical reactions in the cell.

This mechanism changes the ion concentration in the cell and produces electrical energy. This energy stimulates the nerves lying right at the back of the retinal cell. Consequently, the image that came to the eye as a photon of light sets out on its journey in the form of an electrical signal. This signal contains visual information about the object outside.

In order for seeing to take place, the electrical signals produced in the retinal cell have to be transmitted to the center of vision in the brain. Nerve cells, however, are not directly connected to one another: there is a tiny gap between their junction points. How then does the electrical stimulus continue on its way?

At this point, another set of complex operations takes place. The electrical energy is transformed into chemical energy without any loss of the information being carried and in this way the information is transmitted from one nerve to the next.

The chemical carriers located at the junction points of nerve cells successfully convey the information contained in the stimulus coming from the eye from one nerve to another. When transferred to the next nerve, the stimulus is again converted into an electrical signal and continues on its way until it reaches another junction point.

Making its way to the center of vision in the brain in this manner, the signal is compared to the information in the center of memory and the image is interpreted.

Finally, we see the bowl full of fruit, which we viewed before, by virtue of this perfect system made up of hundreds of small details.

All these amazing operations take place in a fraction of a second.

Moreover, since the act of seeing takes place continuously, the system repeats these steps over and over. For example, the molecules playing a part in the chain reaction in the eye are restored to their original state every time and the reaction starts all over again.

Of course at the same time, many other equally complex operations are taking place in other parts of the body. We may simultaneously hear the sound of the image we are viewing, and depending on circumstances, we may sense its odor and taste and feel its touch. Meanwhile, millions of other operations and reactions have to continue without interruption in our body if we are to go on living.

 
The 10 Eye types can be categorized into “simple eyes”, with one concave photoreceptive surface, and “compound eyes”, which comprise a number of individual lenses laid out on a convex surface.

Black Box Confounds Darwinism

The primitive science of Darwin’s day was aware of none of this. Despite that however, even Darwin realized the extraordinary design in the eye and confessed his despair in a letter he wrote to Asa Grey on April 3rd 1860 in which he said, “The very thought of the eye makes me cold all over.”

The biochemical properties of the eye that have been discovered by modern science dealt a greater blow to Darwinism than Darwin could ever have imagined.

The complete process of seeing that we have summarized in simple outline here is even more complex in its details. However even this summary is enough to show what a glorious system has been created in our body.

The reactions taking place in the eye are so complex and so finely tuned that it is quite unreasonable to think that these are a product of chance occurrences as the theory of evolution claims.

Michael Behe, a recognized professor of biochemistry, makes this comment on the chemistry of the eye and the theory of evolution in his book Darwin’s Black Box:

“Now that the black box of vision has been opened, it is longer enough for an evolutionary explanation of that power to consider only the anatomical structures of whole eyes, as Darwin did in the nineteenth century. Each of the anatomical steps and structures that Darwin thought were so simple actually involves staggeringly complicated biochemical processes that cannot be papered over with rhetoric.” (Michael J. Behe, Darwin’s Black Box, p. 22)

But as we have seen, the theory of evolution is unable to account for a single system in a single living cell, much less explain life as a whole.

Having utterly demolished the hypothesis that life is “simple”, science has demonstrated to humanity a very important fact.

Life is not the product of unplanned happenings. It is the result of a perfect creation. The perfect creation of a superior Creator Who brought life into being, Who is God, the Lord of all the Worlds. It is He Who created both humans and all other living beings. And man is responsible to his Lord Who created him. God reminds man of this truth in the Qur’an:

“It is He Who has created hearing, sight and hearts for you. What little thanks you show!” (Surat Sl-Mu’minun: 78).

“They said, “Glory be to You!” We have no knowledge except what You have taught us. You are the All-Knowing, the All-Wise.” (Surat Al-Baqara: 32).

 

18 Things Not to do in Medical School

 

  1. Drunk text your colleagues.
  2. Wish the surgical fellow luck on getting into the surgical training program he’s already graduated from. 
  3. Annoy the nurses.
  4. Not ask any questions.
  5. Walk into the toilets of the opposite gender. (I think this one applies to life in general.) 
  6. Laugh at patients, especially if you’re laughing at their “adiposity”.
  7. Claim that you “didn’t study at all for the exam”. We all know you did.
  8. Play Friday in the common room.
  9. Forget to wash your hands.
  10. Tell a consultant that you have absolutely no interest in their specialty. Just pretend for the few weeks that you’re on their rotation and then you can go back to hating whatever specialty you like.
  11. Spend all your time in the library. Medicine is learnt on the wards.
  12. Choose your specialty too early.
  13. Allow medicine to consume your life.
  14. Introduce yourself to everyone you meet as a medical student. It makes people treat you differently. Don’t be ashamed of it, just… don’t lead with it all the time.
  15. Hide all the good patients from your colleagues.
  16. Skip ward rounds.
  17. Hate it. Yeah, it’s gruelling, but it can be absolutely amazing.
  18. Be scared.

The Journey

I recently became involved in a young people and technology research project, and we had a workshop where one of the tasks was to reflect upon how and why we became involved with the organisation.

So, this is my journey.

It’s hard to pick a point where my story really begins. The defined point would be the first time I cut, but I know that wasn’t the first time. It was the insomnia in prep, the diet plans in year three, the breakdowns in year five. The need to be everything. The need to be perfect. Skipped meals because I was in control and bingeing because I wasn’t. The feeling of not being sick because I never tried to take my own life, I just wanted to.

I was in therapy for the first time seven years ago. One-third of my twenty-one years. Seven years of remitting and relapsing, seven years of making myself okay for someone else. Replacing blades with scratching and calorie control because it wasn’t self-harm if it didn’t bleed. Seven years of being afraid to ask for help because I knew they’d think I was making it up, because they’d know how weak I was. Seven years of convincing professionals I was safe and doubting I’d make it through the day. Seven years before someone realised that it wasn’t just anxiety, it wasn’t just stress, and that maybe I needed more than just help.

That’s the hardest part. Coming to terms with the fact that I may have this for the rest of my life. Admitting that there’s no recovery, just recovering, and wondering if I have the strength to do it. The self-defeating attitude: you can’t see my scars, so my problem was never serious. I only had thoughts, never the attempts. Disordered eating but never the eating disorder—there was nothing wrong with me, there were no mental health issues, no depression, no anxiety, nothing.

I hope this is where the research comes in. A way of saying that this isn’t okay, this isn’t pathetic, you’re not making it up, you can deal with this, and you don’t have to do it alone. That you don’t need to be on the cusp of collapse to deserve help. That there are avenues for young people to seek help without the fear of being branded crazy.

Seven years on, I may still be in limbo and maybe I’m not yet okay, but maybe when eight years rolls around, I’ll be a little closer to alright.

That’s my story. That’s why I care about young people and mental health. That’s why I’m doing medicine.

 

History of Medicine in the Islamic Civilization

For early Muslims, knowledge was a treasure they would eagerly seek. Medical science and pharmacy were no exceptions.

Muslim physicians’ early practice emphasized the importance of preserving health through natural gentle interventions. The Hippocratic philosophy of ‘Premium non nocera’ (first don’t harm) was a well kept notion in their minds as it reflected the teaching of their religion. Prophet Muhammad’s words, “Your body has rights over you” (agreed upon – Ṣaḥīḥ al-Bukhārī) paved their way to amazing advancement in the medical, pharmaceutical, and health fields.

Studying history, we can see that medicine within the Islamic civilization passed through three main stages (Abouleish, n.d.). The first stage started in the early 7th century by collecting and translating the medical knowledge of the Greeks, Persians, Assyrian Syriacs, Indians and Byzantines. (Nagamia, 1998)

Soon enough, Muslim physicians started to elaborate on the collected body of knowledge and largely expanded it through experience, exploration, experimentations, testing, and practice. This was during the Golden Age of the Islamic civilization that brought the original contributions of Muslim physicians in the medical, pharmaceutical, herbal, nutritional and botanical fields. This second stage extended during the ninth through thirteenth centuries. During the last stage, however, decline occurred which reflected the stagnation and gradual deterioration of the whole Islamic nation.

During the second stage, many physicians, Arabs as well as non-Arabs, contributed to the flourishing of the medicine. Physicians like Al-Razi, or Razes (841 – 926 AD), and Ibn-Sina, known as Avicenna (980 – 1037 AD) were pioneers in the medical fields. Their books and teachings were used as bases for medical study in Europe for centuries to come.

Al-Razi’s fame started with the establishment of a hospital in Baghdad in the 9th century which included a special ward for mental illness. He also pioneered in holistic and spiritual medicine, advocating healing and caring for the whole patient. This idea was well reflected in his book ‘Al-Tibb al-Rawhani’ (Spiritual Medicine) where he emphasized the importance of heart purification and ethical and virtuous conducts in achieving total healing.

In his famous book, Al-Qanun fi al-Tibb (The Law in Medicine), Ibn-Sina laid the foundation of medical practice, compiled a complete Materia Medica, described diseases and malfunctions  and gave a full formulary of remedies, suggestions and recipes for treatment.

Balancing Body

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The eye according to Hunain ibn Ishaq. From a manuscript dated circa 1200.

As early as the 10th century, Muslim physicians were treating eye diseases and even performing cataract surgery. Al-Mawsili, an Iraqi ophthalmologist and physician, designed a special needle to remove cataract by suction. And, an amazingly complete text book on eye disease ‘Notebook of the Oculist’ was written by Ali Ibn Isa also in the 10th century Baghdad. On Ibn Isa’s valuable reference was based the European knowledge of modern ophthalmology. (Al-Hassani, 2006)

Ibn al-Nafis, the Syrian Muslim scholar, described in a treatise written in 1210 AC the role of the heart and lung in blood purification and elaborated on Ibn-Sina’s description of the pulmonary circulation. Ibn al-Nafis accurately described the anatomical structure of heart chambers and the fine structure of the circulatory system hundreds of years before Western discoveries.

Early Muslims also laid the foundation of modern day pharmacology through the early work of Sabur ibn Sahl, Al-Razi and Ibn-Sina in the early 9th century. Later on, in the 11th century, Al-Biruni wrote his famous master piece ‘The Book of Pharmacology’ compiling an amazing work on drugs and remedies. Al-Zahrawi’s writings ‘Al-Tasrif’ (Dispensing) further taught methods of drug preparations and formulation starting from simple remedies all the way to complex compounding. (Al-Hassani, 2006)

The principal concepts embodying medicine as practiced during this period were based on the essential meaning of balance. They presented the physician’s role as one of in balancing and harmonizing overall bodily functions while restoring health and healing on the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual planes.

Physical ailments were thought to arise mainly as a result of accumulation of excess waste substance in the body. Overeating, improper food choice and other unhealthy habits were regarded as the source of the accumulated morbid matter, and a disease’s symptoms appears when the digestive process becomes overwhelmed. (Al-Jauziyah, 2003)

More importantly, however, it was the fundamental belief of a Muslim physician that the physical body should never be the sole interest of the physician. It is the Ruh, or soul, which gives this body its vitality and true essence. (Nagamia, 1998) It was thus essential for a Muslim physician to be well aware of the diseases of the heart and soul and how to treat them along with managing physical symptoms.

Mixed Approach

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“Whenever it is possible to use gentle remedy, do not use something powerful instead,”

During the third stage of this thriving medical history within the Islamic world, and around the fourteenth century, a new type of medical writing emerged. The authors were religious scholars, rather than physicians. Their aim was to preserve the wealth of knowledge and heritage compiled and practiced by Muslims over the years from fading away before the rapidly rising Western society. (National Library of Medicine, 1998)

Their writings all carried the same title: Al-Tibb Al-Nabawi (Prophetic Medicine) and was intended as an alternative to the Greek-based medical science. Most famous among them were the writings of Al-Jauziyah, As-Suyuti, and Az-Zahabi which are considered as the base for what is today referred to as ‘Islamic Medicine.’

Al-Jauziyah’s recommendations for approaching the patient reflected the preserved notion of balance and holistic approach taught by early Muslim physicians. He advised physicians to investigate all areas of their patient’s life, research the real cause behind the disease, examine the patient’s feelings, mood and life style and consider dietary options before resorting to drugs. (Al Jauziyah, 2003)

The physicians were knowledgeable about the ‘sickness of the heart and soul’ and took great care when approaching them in a professional yet caring manner. They realized the effects of stress, emotions and mental state, and used positive affirmations from Qur’an and Prophetic Sunnah to increase hope and strengthen the will for healing.

Moral values, love, courage, patience, kindness, and altruism were prescribed as the best remedies for the inner self, and prayer was practiced for maintaining the connection with God, preserving the health of the body and soul, strengthening faith, bringing happiness and energizing the body against acute ailments. (Ayad, 2008)

The six primary channels that should be balanced to avoid contacting diseases, as stated by As-Suyuti, further reflected the wisdom of early Muslim knowledge. He emphasized the importance of the quality of air we breathe, food and drink we consume, physical exercise and movements, our emotional state and feelings, our sleep and waking cycles, and our body’s ability to excrete toxins, get rid of accumulated morbid matter and retain valuable nutrients.

“Whenever it is possible to use gentle remedy, do not use something powerful instead,” he wrote, advising a physician to be “gentle in his speech, kind in his words and close to God.” (As-Suyuti, 2009)

Az-Zahabi, on his side, recommended using only medicines that are similar or related to regular food and that contained no noxious or harmful substances. (Az-Zahabi, 2004)

Starting from the beginnings of the seventeenth century, Islamic Medicine was challenged by rapidly spreading science of conventional modern medicine, which eventually replaced the core of the health care systems in most of the Islamic countries (Nagamia, 1998).

Contemporary practice of Islamic Medicine is restricted to India, Pakistan and Bangladesh where one can find established medical schools teaching this type of medicine, certified and supervised by the Indian Medical Council. (Nagamia, 1998) And while these schools do teach such medical approach while being highly influenced by the teachings of the old Greek practice, it is also common to find conventional physicians in Middle Eastern countries and Malaysia giving medical advice and some treatment while making use of the Islamic approach. Some believe that this mixing of the old and the new, the eastern and the western, makes their patients benefit from ‘the best of both worlds.’

 

By Amira Ayda.

The Oath of a Muslim Physician

Praise be to Allah (God), the Teacher, the Unique, Majesty of the heavens, the Exalted, the Glorious, Glory be to Him, the Eternal Being Who created the Universe and all the creatures within, and the only Being Who contained the infinity and the eternity. We serve no other god besides Thee and regard idolatry as an abominable injustice.

Give us the strength to be truthful, honest, modest, merciful and objective.
Give us the fortitude to admit our mistakes, to amend our ways and to forgive the wrongs of others.
Give us the wisdom to comfort and counsel all towards peace and harmony.
Give us the understanding that ours is a profession sacred that deals with your most precious gifts of life and intellect.
Therefore, make us worthy of this favoured station with honor, dignity and piety so that we may devote our lives in serving mankind, poor or rich, literate or illiterate, Muslim or non-Muslim, black or white with patience and tolerance with virtue and reverence, with knowledge and vigilance, with Thy love in our hearts and compassion for Thy servants, Thy most precious creation.
Hereby we take this oath in Thy name, the Creator of all the Heavens and the earth and follow Thy counsel as Thou has revealed to Prophet Mohammad (pbuh).
“Whoever killeth a human being, not in liew of another human being nor because of mischief on earth, it is as if he hath killed all mankind. And if he saveth a human life, he hath saved the life of all mankind.” (Qur’an V/35)

This medical oath which is a composite from the historical and contemporary writings of physicians of Islamic World, was officially adopted by I.M.A. in 1977.
Islamic Medical Association of North America

 

The Preventive and Healing Wonders of Ablution

Fourteen centuries ago, our Prophet(peace and blessings be upon him), gave us a prescription of 26 washing movements to be carried out 5 times a day, a total of 130 daily washing movements, to grant us optimum health.

“O ye who believe! when ye prepare for prayer, wash your faces, and your hands (and arms) to the elbows; Rub your heads (with water); and (wash) your feet to the ankles. If ye are in a state of ceremonial impurity, bathe your whole body. But if ye are ill, or on a journey, or one of you cometh from offices of nature, or ye have been in contact with women, and ye find no water, then take for yourselves clean sand or earth, and rub therewith your faces and hands, Allah doth not wish to place you in a difficulty, but to make you clean, and to complete his favor to you, that ye may be grateful.” (Chapter 5, Verse 6)

Before a Muslim performs his prayers, he carries out the ablution movements mentioned in the above verse as well as others, which the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) has shown us.

Thus, the ablution comprises of washing the hands, arms right up to the elbow, face, mouth, nostrils, and feet up the ankle, all three times each. The inside and behind the ears, as well as the part of the head above the forehead is wiped once. Done five times a day, it not only cleanses these vital parts of the body from dust and dirt but also “softens” and refreshes them. [Health and Fitness In Islam, Halal.com]

Interestingly enough, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) also encouraged doing ablution before going to bed. This same ritual is also encouraged by Yoga experts who say that washing important motor and sensory organs such as the hands, arms, eyes, legs, mouth and genitals before sleep using cool water relaxes the body preparing it for a deep sleep. [Avadhuta, Vedprajinananda, Yoga Health Secrets]

Stimulating the Biological Rhythms
In an article titled “Muslims Rituals and their Effect on the Person’s Health”, Dr. Magomed Magomedov, assistant to the department of the Man’s General Hygiene and Ecology in the Daghestan State Medical Academy, speaks about how ablution stimulates the biological rhythms of the body and specifically Biological Active Spots (BASes), very much like the idea behind Chinese reflexotherapy. Presently we know that a man is a complex system of electromagnetic fields, meridians, biological rhythms and so on. Man’s internal organs, in their turn, present a no less sophisticated bioenergetical whole; they all have indissoluble multi-channel bilateral connections with the skin, which hosts special spots, whose functions resemble those of buttons on “control” and “ recharge boards” responsible for particular organs. These spots are called biologically active spots (BASes). [Magomedov, Magomed, Muslim Rituals & their effect on the person’s health]

While pointing out to the similarities between ablution and the science of Chinese reflexology in his fascinating article, Dr. Magomedov also states the main different points. To become a doctor in reflexology, he says, one has to take a 15 to 20 year course of study, incomparable with the simple learning techniques of ablution.

In another comparison, reflexotherapy was primarily used to cure diseases and very rarely for prevention, while, as we shall see, ablution has many preventive benefits. There was also a negative side to reflexotherapy, he says, one that is not found in ablution; a patient was exposed to traumas since doctors used cauterisation.

“The majority of the most powerful BASes are being washed during the Muslim ritual. It is not the doctor, who had studied for many years, who does it, but every Muslim by himself. Besides, praying five times a day obliges a Muslim to take the preventive measures against diseases beforehand.”[Magomedov, Magomed, Muslim Rituals & their effect on the person’s health]

According to Dr. Magomedov, Chinese medicine says that there are more than 700 BASes, and sixty-six of them have quick reflex therapy effects and are named the drastic (or aggression or antique or prime-elements) spots.

Out of these sixty-six spots, sixty-one of them are located in zones required for ablution while the other five are located between the ankle and knee.

Thus, ablution becomes a kind of treatment complex, which includes the hydromassage of the BAS, their thermal and physical stimulation.[Magomedov, Magomed, Muslim Rituals & their effect on the person’s health]

The BASes in the face (which are washed during ablution) “recharge” such organs as the intestines, stomach and bladder, in addition to having a positive effect on the nervous and reproductive systems, says Dr. Magomedov in his findings, adding that the BAS responsible for the osseous system, intestine, nervous system, lumbar area, stomach, pancreas, gall-bladder, thyroid gland, solar plexus and others are situated on the right leg, another area reached by ablution.

The left leg has the BAS responsible for the work of the pituitary gland, the brain organ that regulates the functioning of the endocrine glands and controls growing. In the ear’s cochlea are hundreds of BASes that “harmonize the work of almost all organs, decrease high blood pressure and relieve tooth and throat pain.” Ear ablution is considered Sunna (Prophetic tradition). Another aspect that Dr. Magomedov stresses on is that Prophetic tradition emphasized the importance of massaging and applying pressure during ablution, which is something that has a scientifically-grounded explanation.

Dr. Magomedov said that his studies were triggered by his solemn belief that the five-time-a-day Muslim prayers were bound to have not only an “indisputable spiritual effect” but were also bound to “have a purely physical healing effect as well.”

Preventive Cleansing
From a non-alternative medicine perspective, Mukhtar Salem, in his book titled ‘Prayers: a Sport for the Body and Soul’, speaks about the health benefits of every aspect of ablution. He does not speak about the BASes in one’s body, but nevertheless, he describes the preventive benefits of ablution.

SKIN:
Ablution, he says, helps prevent skin cancer. This is his explanation: the areas that are washed during ablution are the parts of the body that are most prone to be exposed to pollution, whether it is pollution from the internal secretions of the body on to the skin surface, such as sweat, or whether it is external. Ablution, removes this ‘pollution’ five times a day, and hence maintains a clean outside layer of skin, which in turn helps the cells underneath to function properly.
Also, washing with water helps invigorate the ends of the blood vessels, as well as the nerves and glands that are near the skin surface, and hence helps them perform their functions efficiently.[Salem, Mukhtar, Prayers: A sport for the soul and body, CAIRO, The Arab Modern Center (1990), pg. 52.]

Salem adds that research has proven that one of the main reasons behind skin cancer is that the skin is exposed to chemicals, especially petrochemicals, and that the best way to prevent skin cancer is by constantly removing these chemicals.

MOUTH:
The obvious reason behind washing the mouth during ablution, Salem says, is to remove the food particles, which could cause teeth and gum problems. That is also one of the reasons why siwak (brushing one’s teeth) is also encouraged before ablution.

NOSTRILS:
When washing one’s nostrils, one is also performing a preventive health measure as the germs trapped in the nostrils are removed and do not pass on to the respiratory system.

According to a study conducted by a team of doctors in Alexandria University, the Prophetic tradition, which urges the exaggeration of washing the nostrils by introducing the water in the nostril then blowing it out, positively affects the inner coating of the nostrils. Those who carried out the washing in the correct form had clean, shiny nostrils with no dust clinging to the small hair inside. However, those who did not perform ablution had light colored, greasy nostrils and their nostril hairs fell off easily.

FACE:
Repeated washing of the face invigorates the facial skin cells and helps prevent early wrinkles as well as having a cleansing effect on the inside of the eyes, which prevents eye infections, says Salem. Washing the ear helps rid them from wax accumulation, which may cause ear infections as well as affecting the inner ear, which eventually causes body imbalances.

FEET:
The Prophetic tradition of encouraging one to wash between the toes while washing the feet, is also extremely important, says Salem, as it prevents the foot, which in our modern times is trapped most of the day inside shoes, from acquiring athlete’s foot.

Over all, he adds, ablution also has an exercising effect on all the muscles involved in its movement, which are thus being stimulated five times a day or even more according to repetition.

Extinguishing the Fires of Anger
Prophetic tradition, with regards to ablution, is also ecologically friendly, as the Prophet (peace be upon him) repeatedly encouraged water conservation, even if abluting from a running river. Ibn Majah related that the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said, “There is a shaytan (devil) for ablution called `walhan’, meaning greedy, avoid the waste of water.”

We are also encouraged to make ablution while being in a state of anger for the cooling and refreshing effect of the water, as we are told that anger is from the devil who is made out of fire and can therefore be put off by water.

Finally, there is a moral to this article, besides understanding the benefits of ablution. One should never take things at face value, and must have strong faith that everything that Allah prescribes has a wisdom behind it that we may or may not know. “And they say: ‘We hear, and we obey: (We seek) Thy forgiveness, our Lord, and to Thee is the end of all journeys.’” (Chapter 2, Verse 285). “Nor does he say (aught) of (his own) Desire. It is no less than inspiration sent down to him” (Chapter 53, Verse 3 & 4).