Saturday, May 16, 2009

Self Righteous Behavior and Hurt


Sit back and think about this last week, this last month for that matter, have you behaved as though you were “better” then someone else? Have you talked down to someone? Maybe even hurt their feelings by your behavior?

At some point in life, most people go on a pride kick, where for whatever reason be it socioeconomic status, education, beauty, material possessions, faith, even fashion sense....they get a little bit (or a big bit) of an ego and start to talk down to others.

Typical condescending comments begin as follows:

“I dont mean to be like this but.....”
“I mean its ok for her/you considering , but as for me I would never.....”
“Wow did you see what she....I can't believe she thinks thats ok”
“Just so you know.....”
“Well in my circle we would never.....”
“I guess some people can't afford......I mean its not their/your fault....but im just saying....”
“I wouldn't expect her/you to know....”

We've all heard these kind of remarks coming from others, and probably even ourselves from time to time. But where does all this superiority come from? Just because we have been blessed with something good, doesnt mean that we should put others down because they have a different set of good qualities. Most people have something good about them, we don't all have the same things, but in general we all have something about us that is admirable and desirable.

The next time you are about to utter something that you know is a put down, even if its said in the nicest manner...why not flush it? Would you like it if someone else said this to or about you? Is there really a good reason for putting someone else down? Most of the time, we do it with silly, unimportant, trivial things – like fashion sense, or food preference. But what about bigger things, like material means or education? Is there really a need to put someone down, or act superior? Even though you may think(or even know) that you know there really a need to be negative and hurtful? What does it say about you and your level of faith when you do this? The main point of self righteous superiority is to inflict harm on someone and to raise our own status in the eyes of others at someone else's expense.

So, in short, the next time you find yourself about to spew some less-than-kind words or remarks that are of a “superior” nature, do the right and kind thing and keep silent. Give yourself a confidence boost in a healthier, kinder way.

Think about it like this: after you pass on from this life, what will people say of you? Will they say you were kind and pray for your salvation...or will they say that you were self righteous and mean and ask that you get what you deserve???

“Fellow Muslims! The greatest goal of Islam is to extend kindness to self and kindness to the creatures. It is this goal that determines the position of one before Allah in this world and the Hereafter. It is also this kindness that determines man’s position among his fellow human beings. All obligatory and forbidden things are based on this kindness. Allaah has made it obligatory in all His legislations.”

Shaikh ‘Ali bin Abdur-Rahmaan Al-Hudhayfee

“Worship Allaah and join none with Him in worship; and do good to parents, kinsfolk, orphans, the poor, the neighbour who is near of kin, the neighbour who is a stranger, the companion by your side, the wayfarer (you meet), and those (slaves) whom your right hands possess. Verily, Allaah does not like such as are proud and boastful.”
(An-Nisaa 4:36)