Self-control is firstly very fundamental and then self-purification follows on from this. For example, we cannot only seek to control a child. Controlling it is the first step but after that we should educate and train it. Our soul is also like this and so after being stopped and prohibited from going in wrong directions, it then has to be changed. The soul which commands us to do bad things (nafs al ammarah) has to be transformed into the soul which at least blames us when we do something wrong (nafs al lawwamah). If we continue with this process then our soul will be further transformed into the soul which is at rest and peaceful (nafs al mutmainnah). When this stage is reached there are no longer any bad pressures or temptations coming from inside us and our soul is completely under our control and only enjoys doing good things.
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