The company’s Islamic identity influences its conduct in three ways: accountability, Islamic identity, ethics and morals.
Islam teaches us that one day we will be held responsible for the
things we do. This is why we feel a deep responsibility towards our
clients and the information we share. This accountability gets even
bigger because of the fact that we use Islam in our branding and thus
connect our output to the world with the views people can have of Islam
and Muslims. Muslim
Fit feels that it is responsible for the abovementioned claims and the
related theoretical backing for the methods and techniques we use. We try to base our work on scientific and/or Islamic literature and make sure that we are aware of the benefits and possible side effects of our actions.
Secondly, Muslim Fit’s Islamic identity gives our Muslim clients the safety and freedom to discuss their religion and its effect on their wellbeing and performance in a society that is increasingly secular and anti-spirituality. We see in both practice and in scientific literature many examples of how religious identity conflicts or spiritual coping techniques can impact all aspects of personal, social and professional life. Muslim Fit acknowledges the importance and interplay of all aspects of health and wellbeing: physically, mentally, socially and spiritually.
Thirdly, Muslim Fit uses Islamic values and ethics to evaluate the client’s goals and motivations. Just as we make sure our methods are conform scientific and/or theological truths, the goals we set with our clients also need to fall within the Islamic paradigm. Conventional coaching aims to guide a client to whatever goal he/she might have, Muslim Fit aims to realign the client’s goals to be in-service to their life’s purpose and to elevate one’s actions to a form of Ibadah (worship). This means that we have an opinion on what is ‘good’ or ‘bad’ and recognize that certain goals (hedonistic) and forms of motivation (fear/shame/compulsion) can have negative impacts on long term performance and wellbeing in this world and the hereafter.
An Islamic approach to health and vitality.
Islam is not a marketing tool, neither is being Muslim. Our religious identity has thus always been more than just interchanging words with Islamic vocabulary or merely using general Quranic texts/sayings of the Prophet ﷺto rectify secular approaches or methods. Islam has come to guide, it came with tools and frameworks from where one can derive new ideas or judge the validity of claims that come from external sources.
We all know that our bodies are a gift from Allah ﷻand that taking care of our bodies is an Amanah (trust) placed upon us. This fact is often cited combined with the well-known hadith “A strong believer is better and is more lovable to Allah than a weak believer, and there is good in everyone…” (Sahih Muslim 2664). Problems arise when one uses his own perception, often formed by their years of exposure to modern day marketing and secular thinking, to interpret the meaning of these sayings and to define ‘health’ and ‘being strong’. Poor understanding of the concept of health can lead to very unhealthy behaviour.
Being healthy does not mean you have to be very big or muscular, nor that you have to be able to run a marathon. Health is not that perfect looking person on the billboard of your gym. Health is a tool, something that enables you, that can be used to adapt to the tribulations of life and to do the things that are important to you. Muslim Fit defines health as “a state wherein a person has the physical, mental, social and spiritual capabilities to adapt and self-manage his/hers tests of life and ones path to Allah.”.
Health is a tool and a tool’s purpose is to be used. If you have the shiniest hammer in the world but nothing to build; that hammer will be worthless. Even worse, when you have nothing to build but start swinging your hammer around aimlessly you will probably damage yourself and the environment. The same goes for health; health gets its value from life and what you do with it. This is where vitality coaching comes in. Muslim Fit defines vitality as ‘having an autonomous and meaningful life’. Being autonomous means you have the ability to do things because you want to. It’s the opposite of being controlled by whatever life throws at you and you merely surviving in it. Autonomy is not the same as individualism, because one can autonomically choose to selflessly serve others. It is also different from hedonism because one can choose to do something that they think is important but not particularly enjoy that activity.
A life with meaning is one that aligns itself with the divine ethics and morals from Islam. Ethics and morals enable us to differentiate between ‘good’ and ‘bad’, ‘productive’ and ‘counterproductive’. Vitality coaching helps us to look at ones goals/aspirations and the underlying motivation for those needs. A goal that is not within the Islamic framework will ultimately not only lead to less success and wellness in the hereafter, but also in this life. Including Islamic ethics and morals isn’t only useful to re-align ones already existing goals and wants, it also helps to scan for overlooked of deliberately ignored needs and goals. Deprivation of certain needs that are kept unattended can express themselves in harmful behaviour and pursuing goals that lower anatomy and wellness.
Knowing what you find important and enjoyable in life, and being physically, mentally, socially and spiritually able to pursue those virtues: this is living a meaningful and autonomous life.