Khalil Center is a psychological and spiritual community wellness center advancing the professional practice of psychology rooted in Islamic principles. An initiative designed to address the widespread prevalence of social, psychological, familial, relational and spiritual issues of Muslim communities.
Khalil Center’s approach emphasizes: psychological reconstruction, behavioral reformation and spiritual elevation. Khalil Center utilizes faith-based approaches rooted in Islamic theological concepts while integrating the science of psychology towards addressing psychological, spiritual and communal health.
Psychological and spiritual health is a necessary lifelong process that has been extensively discussed in the Islamic intellectual heritage. Gaining awareness into one’s psychological and spiritual functioning is necessary in forming a meaningful relationship with Allāh and following the mandates of our religion. Our greatest asset in life, is our own very self – just as we strive to work on intellectual and academic development, psycho-spiritual development is all the more important for success in this world and the next. Sahl bin ʿAbdullāh (may Allāh be pleased with him) once said: “If one knows his mind, one knows his state between him and his Lord.”
The importance of personal development and refinement of character is established by the Prophetic tradition, wherein he (peace & blessings be upon him) said “I was exclusively sent to perfect good character” (Adab al-Mufrad, Bukharī). Thus, Muslim scholars and spiritual practitioners have contributed an immense body of literature on psychospiritual and character development. This Islamic scholarly heritage is replete with positive practices that promote psycho-spiritual well-being. They are made up of the reformation of human thinking, behavior, and emotional expressions. An intentional focus on psychological and spiritual development facilitates the development of holistic health and well-being.
Abū Zayd al-Balkhī, a 9th century Muslim polymath, mentions in his work on “The Sustenance of the Soul,” that intentional psychospiritual practices nurture a resilience to mental illness & that this is necessary as a preventative measure for all peoples. He even places a greater emphasis on mental over physical health illustrating that all human beings are prone to psychological distress and few will ever escape the stressors of life. Therefore, the absence of consciously developing psychological strength or the lack of seeking assistance after dysfunction has started, can lead to unnecessary significant suffering (Badri, 2008).
Traditional Islamically Integrated Psychotherapy (TIIP) is therapeutic framework that is an ever-evolving modality of psychological treatment coined by Khalil Center. It is the culmination of Khalil Center’s research on psychological treatment conducted by its interdisciplinary team consisting of dually trained professionals and Islamic scholars. At the heart of TIIP is an integration of professional psychology within an Islamic framework of psychotherapy.
TIIP is rooted in the idea and belief in the power of ‘the talking cure’ under the care of an expert practitioner. The ultimate objective for every believer is to attain and maintain proximity to their Lord. Developing and nourishing psychological, spiritual, cognitive and behavioral health are important elements of this journey. However, as individuals on this journey to God, we are all susceptible to psycho-spiritual distress from time to time. At times, such distress may graduate to becoming significant barriers that can even interrupt our optimal functioning. Seeking support during these times can be instrumental for re-establishing holistic health. This can be achieved by virtue of a therapeutic relationship with a seasoned practitioner. Such a relationship can be immensely powerful for not only restoring health but also for unlocking one’s full potential. Thus, the practitioner through the therapeutic forum sets out to foster psychological and spiritual healing, well-being and growth. The TIIP practitioner adopts an integrated approach, drawing upon the Islamic and behavioral sciences within the therapeutic setting. During this process, the practitioner works with their patient to develop a better understanding of their intrapsychic dilemmas (inkishāf), helps alleviate distress to restore the balance of their functioning (Iʿtidāl) and engenders an integration of all the disjointed parts of the self (ittiḥād).
Khalil Center’s TIIP model of psychotherapy is inspired by the Qur’an, Sunnah and the traditions of the scholars particularly of the spiritual sciences. In fact, psychology is made up of the Greek words psyche (the soul) and logos (the study of). The soul here refers to all non-physical aspects of a person and fits in very well with the Islamic concept of mental and spiritual health. Reconstruction of psychotherapy within an Islamic framework can engender an attempt to revitalize the spiritual self by paving the way towards the exploration of the self via guided introspection.
Khalil Center’s zakat policies and guidelines are in accordance with the four Sunni schools of Islamic law and are audited by the Dar al-Iftāʾ department at Darul Qasim (Glendale Heights, IL). Our zakat policies adopt the most precautionary opinion, in accordance with the four Sunni schools, regarding the impermissibility of using zakat funds for operational expenses. Our 100% zakat policy requires that all zakat donations are used for zakat-eligible clients’ services alone. Khalil Center thus does not use zakat funding for operational costs, such as building maintenance, furniture, website development, or office supplies. Zakat funds are distributed for use for zakat-eligible individuals exclusively. Khalil Center acts as the agent to distribute the funds to providers directly for their sessions with zakat-eligible clients within the standard pay period for non-zakat clients (assuming availability of zakat funds). Zakat funds received by Khalil Center are utilized for client services through the means of appointed agency (tawkīl, or wakālah), by which a zakat-eligible client appoints Khalil Center as its agent (wakīl) for the reception and distribution of zakat funds on their behalf to pay for mental health services.
For a complete and detailed guide to our zakat policy, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Here are the three main reasons that we selected the name Khalil and how it really symbolizes our work.
- Khalil in the Arabic language means a very close and dear companion. This word is on a specific scale known as (al-Sifat al-Mushābah), whereby in the Arabic language it is used to indicate that the aforementioned trait is consistently and constantly present in the one whom it is used for.
This is paramount to Khalil Center’s work due our mission to form close connections with the ones who seek our assistance, having a sincere desire for the betterment of our companions in faith and humanity. Also, psychological proximity and love grows between individuals that self-disclose very personal elements of their lives to sincere non-judgmental peers. When Alqamah, (may Allāh be pleased with him) was parting from this world, he provided his son with some final advice regarding the characteristics to seek out in a companion. He said poetically:
“Oh my son, if you are to take a companion, be the companion of the one whom, when you offer service to him, he acknowledges your service. The one whom when you spend time with him, he adorns you with good traits and when you are going through difficult times, he is there to assist you. Be the companion of one whom when you extend your hand to accomplish something, he extends his hands to join you. If he sees good qualities in you, he makes you aware of it and if he sees negative traits in you, he informs you of these. Be the companion of the one whom when you speak, he validates your truth. If you endeavor to take on a difficult task, he encourages you and if you dispute with him in matters, he gives you preference over himself” (Mentioned in Bidayatul Hidayah of Ghazali).
- The Prophet of Islam, Muhammad our Master (peace and blessings be upon him) is described by Allāh in the Qur’an: “There has certainly come to you a Messenger from among yourselves. Grievous to him is what you suffer; [he is] concerned over you and to the believers is kind and merciful” (9:128).
This verse inspires the work of Khalil Center. As followers of the Prophet of Islam (peace and blessings be upon him) we believe that it is our duty to show concern, intervene, empathize and safeguard the individuals in our community from suffering (prevention) through deep compassion.
- The Prophet Ibrahim (peace and blessings be upon him) was referred to as Khalilullah, the dear friend of Allāh. We derive many spiritual benefits from being connected to our forefather Ibrahim (peace be upon him), the father of the Abrahamic traditions.
- Khalil Center’s name is also inspired by the great Indian ascetic and saint of the 19th century, Abu Ibrahim Khalil Ahmad Saharanpuri (1852-1927) (may Allāh be pleased with him). He was known for his combination of vast knowledge, deep piety and connection to Allāh and His messenger Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him). Shaykh Khalil Ahmad inspired many in his life and spiritually nurtured the next generation of saints. He led a life of abstinence from worldly desires, deeply content with his spiritual connection to Allāh, whereby he did not even speak to anyone in the last 24 hours of his life except that he would repeatedly utter the name of Allāh until it was the last words that left his mouth prior to his soul being taken back to Him. He was buried in Jannatul Baqi in the holy city of the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him).