GEN204 Self Development (Tazkiah)

Course Description

This course focuses on the importance of purifying the soul, softening the heart, strengthening the relationship between the servant and his Lord, and increasing one’s faith. It encourages students to examine and appreciate the deep meanings behind acts of worship, learn how to transform worldly acts into acts of worship, acknowledge the magnitude of good character in being a pious Muslim, and master the etiquettes of remembering Allah SWT and attaining His pleasure.

Course Code: GEN204

Credit hours: 3

Pre-Requisites: None

Learning Objectives

  • Students will be able to explain why self-development is important, the role of self-evaluation in the journey towards self-improvement, using textual evidences from the Quran and Sunnah.
  • Students will be able to write a short essay explaining the interaction between the Rooh (soul), Qalb (heart) and Nafs (self), the different types of hearts and types of nafs, how it relates to their Iman (faith), what causes it to corrupt, and the consequences of sin.
  • Students will be able to give examples of the flesh hadith, using traps of Shaytan and diseases of the heart such as: including anger, backbiting, slander, tale carrying, jealousy, envy, lying, riya, love of this world, miserliness, greed, hatred.
  • Students will be able to list, with examples of each, the different remedies of sick hearts and weak Iman, including knowledge, tawbah (repentance), Dhikr (remembrance), mujahadah (struggling against the nafs), muraqabah (vigilant watchfulness of the heart), khalwah (solitude), tadabbur (reflection), and Duaa  .
  • Students will be able to analyze case study problems, noting their causes and solutions.
  • In an effort to improve their relationship with their Creator, maximize their benefit from acts of worship and obedience, and improve their dealings with themselves and others, students will start a journal and develop a self-improvement plan, analyzing their strengths/weaknesses, set ambitious goals, and monitor their progress.

Course Outlines

  • Sincerity
  • The Nature of Intention
  • Types of Heart
  •  Symptoms of the Heart’s Sickness and Signs of its Health
  • The Four Poisons of the Heart
  • Remembrance of Allah and Recitation of the Qur’an
  • Seeking Allah’s Forgiveness
  • Supplication
  • Invoking Blessings on the Prophet
  • Praying at Night
  • Doing Without the Pleasures of this World
  •  The States of the Self
  •  Perseverance
  •  Gratitude
  •  Complete Reliance on Allah
  •  Love of Allah
  • Contentment with the Decree of Allah
  • Hope in Allah
  • Fear of Allah
  • The Life of This World
  • Repentance

Main  Textbook

Purification of the Soul by Ahmad Farid

Additional On-line Readings:

The links below are provided as a convenience for the students; they do not constitute an endorsement or an approval by Al-Huda University of any of the products, services or opinions of the corporation or organization or individual.  Al-Huda University has no responsibility for the accuracy, legality or content of the external site or for that of subsequent links. Contact the external site for answers to questions regarding its content.

The Message of Islam / Tazkiah

Grading and Evaluation

  • Minimum passing grade 70%
  • Participation: 40% (10 assignments, 4% each)
  • Oral exam: 20%
  • Mid-Term exam: 10%
  • Research paper: 20%
  • Final exam: 10%

Guidelines for Research Paper:

As part of the course, you are required to submit a research paper. The topic chosen must be relevant to the course and approved by the Instructor.

The paper must meet the following requirements:

  • At least ten (10) double-spaced pages (not including the introduction and conclusion)
  • 1 inch margins
  • 12 pt. size (Times New Roman)
  • Follow the standard research paper structure with a Table of Contents, Abstract or Executive Summary, Introduction, Main Body, Conclusion, List of Reference
  • The Main Body should be organized into logical chapters and paragraphs
  • When quoting Hadith, a notation indicating its authenticity must be clearly

Please Watch:

   How To Write A Research Paper

Communication Etiquette:

  • Post all your questions related to the course to the (Online Test) forum.
  • If sending emails directly to the lecturer, please include appropriate label in the subject line (Action Required/Info/Admin) and allow up to 3 working days for reply.
  • Limit telephone communication with the Lecturer to within specified office hours only.
  • When leaving a voicemail, please clearly state your name, course code, and contact number.

Additional Information:

Log in Instructions:

To attend live – online lectures (on their scheduled time):

Virtual Class Room

Access the course on-line by logging into Online School, accessible from

Al-Huda Online School

You will need a user name and password to:

  • View the recorded lectures if you missed the live online ones.
  • Interact with your teacher and classmates.
  • Upload and submit your assignments, research papers, and exams.
  • View your grades.
  • All attempt must be made to submit assignments by the agreed due dates. Late submissions will be penalized.
  • Weekly materials and graded assignments will be posted onto the site by Monday – in sha Allah.
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