H19. Overcoming Hubut (Mental Blocks, Laxity, Laziness)

In the course of your Hifdh, watch out for the ‘Hubut’ moments. Those days when you can’t seem to memorise anything, you have a mental block & your motivation feels like it’s just faced the firing squad…a phenomenon faced by everyone but for the student memorizing Qur’an these ‘down moments’ are public enemy no.1 as they can really mess you up and throw you off-course if you don’t know how to deal with them. Some students face major moments of ‘futur’ (laxity) and as a result; they abandon memorisation entirely and never reach their goal of Hifdh al-Qur’an (even though they may have memorised over half the Qur’an).
Hubut – هبوط or Futur فتور (an Arabic term meaning lack of motivation, laxity, mental blocks, laziness, weakness, slackness)

Overcoming Hubut – A Discouraging Obstacle in Hifdh al-Qur’an (edited from link below)

by Fajr-Literary | Jun 11, 2013 | 20 


It’s a frustrating period of time which makes a person sad, disheartened and feel like they’ll never achieve anything. So the one who used to memorise 2 pages a day is reduced to memorizing only a few verses, the one who used to wake up earlier than crows finds himself in hibernation and the one who used to make time for Hifdh despite his busy schedule can no longer be bothered with things.
So why does it happen and when does it happen?

Well, these moments can occur randomly and for different reasons. As a student of Qur’an you’ll have always been told to steer clear of sins and this is because sins bring about these moments of hubut faster and more frequently than anything else – and once you begin to suffer from it, it creates the perfect atmosphere for one to abandon and forget the Qur’an. It’s a major tool of Shaytan which he uses to mislead the slaves of Allah from engaging in good deeds. But sometimes despite a person’s attempts of avoiding sin, they may fall into the other ‘less known’ causes of hubut:

Work overload

Long periods of not listening to or reciting Qur’an

Emotions running high or low/emotional instability (such as anger, over-excitement, depression, mood-swings, giddiness etc).

Thinking too much

Eating too much

Sleeping too much

Not finding a companion to work with or a teacher to assist you

Too much empty time


Receiving too much criticism from others

For sisters, you may notice hubut near the times of your menstrual cycle and hence you face mental blocks either before, during or after your cycle or generally when you are hormonal.
So what do we do?

Good question, my friend!

But a better question is: ‘What would you do if you were on your way somewhere important and something blocked your road?’
Your answers would probably include things like:

– Avoid the blockage

– Get around it or move it out of your way somehow

– Find a different route

– Wait a while for things to clear

Ok, Ok…Some tips:

First thing first: When you’ve hit your moment of ‘hubut’, it’s important that whatever happens, you do not end up stopping your Hifdh altogether. You can decrease your portion if necessary, but never halt it. Instead, to make up for things, try to increase your listening of Qur’an so have your Surah playing in your iPod, MP3, CD or cassette player, around the house, in the car, on your way to work etc. If you are familiar with your hubut and know that it’ll only last a few hours or a day, then maybe take a break from Hifdh for that time period and do something different until your laxity passes by.
If your moment of hubut is due to something physical (e.g. you’re tired, hungry, or stressed etc) then you need to satisfy this first and overcome it. So sleep well, eat well, relax, and maybe and do some stretches.
Stay away from anything which will lower your spirits or demotivate you – be it junk food (this is crime I say), loneliness, laziness, boredom, lack of support, friends/family who may criticize your efforts (be kind and patient with them but take a break as well) basically try to avoid whatever does not float your boat and gets you down.
Have some organisation in your life! Really, it does wonders to be tidy, neat and organised – and it actually leads you to become more organised and focused at mind. With Hifdh of Qur’an, you need space. That means physical space (periods of solitude to contemplate and memorise) as well as giving yourself mental ‘space’ – if you overwhelm your brain with a hundred tasks or scatter it with stick-it notes, you just won’t find the focus, motivation or time for Hifdh.

Routines are the best! You may enjoy living in the fast lane and being spontaneous, but sometimes you need those ‘mundane’ routines in life to ground you. Think of them as anchors that hold you down whenever you feel like you’re about to fall off the road. If for example, you have a regular routine of coming home from work, showering, eating and then sitting down for half an hour to memorise half a page, then when you’re hit by hubut one day, you will naturally still be composed and find it easier to continue with that routine compared to someone who has no routine for their Hifdh.

And were you to miss that daily half an hour of Hifdh, you will actually feel weird… like something is missing! (Well, it is.)
Stay active. Have workout sessions where you physically exercise your body, and depending on how fit you are, I would recommend doing rigorous exercise at least two or three times a week – it’ll make you more alert, creates a sense of passion/ambition in you, keeps things like depression, laziness and tiredness at bay and guess what? It’s a sharp sword against hubut and futur.
Have a deadline, always. Set one deadline for overall Hifdh (e.g. by July a certain target) and have another deadline for every commencing week or month etc. Make sure you write these deadlines in different places – on your work desk, in the kitchen, as a reminder on your phone! This way, whenever you are faced with hubut, you still have a focus and something to work towards, no matter what.

And the list goes on…
A point to note: If you look back at the pre-mentioned causes of hubut, you’ll notice a common factor… they are mainly causes which preoccupy and affect one’s heart and state of mind. Hence, to avoid hubut avoid anything which affects the healthy state of your heart, e.g. having too much attachment to this world.
Realise that through the course of memorising Qur’an you will be undergoing a form of training whereby you attain strong characteristics of a believer insha’Allah – e.g. a firm and correct belief, patience, zuhd, gratitude, contemplation, determination, courage, humbleness, you gain good judgement, sound mind, kindness & ease in character (riqqa), and so on bi’ithnillah.


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