A Story of Pride
One day water said to oil, “I am the source of all life forms in this world. Without me, humans, plants, and animals will perish. A little rain in the desert is all that is needed for life to emerge in the form of beautiful plants and greenery. This is the important role that I play in creation. Why is it that Allah (SWT) has placed you, oil, above me? (Oil lies above water)
Oil replied, “True you are essential for the survival in this world but look at yourself… a slight breeze and you go out of control and become a raging storm. Along comes the wind and you become a destructive flood. You have no control over your actions. In your rage, you destroy farmlands, houses, and property. Also, you have developed pride. I, on the other hand, allow human beings to burn me to give them light. They put me in a pot, over the fire to cook their food. I bear this with patience, and in humility, I am a service to human beings. That is why Allah has placed me over you.” – (Excerpt from the book: Inspiration From The Heart -By Mahdie Kriel and Ayesha Kriel)
Do you feel superior to others? Do you find it difficult to ask for help or advice? Do you sometimes reject any ideas that are not your own? Are you not able to apologize when you’re wrong… or even when you’re right? Do you treat the people around you differently based on wealth, status or knowledge?
If you’ve answered yes to these questions, you may have a severe case of pride. Fear not, no matter how far this disease has spread there is still a glint of hope that can save your heart before it’s too late. Now to find a cure, we must understand the underlying cause of this wretched virus. Read on to locate the root problem of pride.
CAUSES OF PRIDE
Delusion – It’s understandable that you may have been pulled into the craziness of a busy mommy life and have forgotten the reason you were created, which is to be a servant of Allah (SWT), to worship Him, and to do everything for His pleasure.
Accumulation – Perhaps for too long, you’ve focused on increasing your material worth in your home and with your children, rather than your spiritual value.
Ego – No human being is perfect. There is always room to improve; there will always be an opportunity to expand your knowledge, there are mountains that you have not yet climbed. Mothers sometimes think they have all the answers, but you do not know everything, you never will.
PREVENTION OF PRIDE
Prevention is always, always better than cure, so let’s take a look at some preventative measures:
Remember where you came from – No I’m not talking about your cultural background, think way before that, to when you were a blood clot in the womb of your mother. From your very first day on earth, right up to a certain age, you were weak and helpless. Through all the drops of milk, the diaper-changing and the incessant crying… understand that you were nothing, and you depended on someone else for everything.
Observe your surroundings – The things you call your achievements, bearing your children, your hard work at home, your studies or your job, your “blood, sweat and tears” are the things Allah has given you and can easily be taken away.
The blessing of your senses – Besides your material possessions, you have been blessed with five senses. Can you imagine a life without even one of those extremely helpful gifts?
I recommend the following treatment:
- Remind yourself that the next stage in this life is death. No matter how wealthy you are or how successful you are as a wife and a mom, you will be put in the ground like everyone else.
- Make shukr to Allah (SWT) for His bounties and His blessings on you and your family. He has granted you blessings in every single minute of your day. Picture this, in the 1440 minutes of your day, you took 17280 breaths, and roughly 150-180 liters of blood was filtered in your body, and you didn’t have to do a thing.
- Continually engage in the remembrance of Allah (SWT) with Dhikr and recitation of The Holy Quran.
Like any good doctor will say, to get rid of something completely, we have to manage it to keep it from returning. Look to the beautiful character of Prophet Muhammad (saw). He is an excellent example to imitate. Despite being regarded as the best of all mankind, our beloved Prophet (saw) remained humble, spoke with love, and made each person feel as if they were his favorite. He never looked down on anyone, not even to those who were sinful. Remember the words of Rasulullah (saw):
“Whoever has pride in his heart equal to the weight of a mustard seed shall not enter Paradise.” [Sahih Muslim]
Remember Shaytaan was proud, so remind yourself of the story of Iblees. Shaytaan’s demise came from pride; he defied a command of Allah (SWT) saying to his Creator,
“I am better than he. Thou did create me of fire and him from clay.”
By the Will of Allah and constant care of your heart, a mother can eradicate the disease of pride once and for all. We always need to remind our families and ourselves of the dangers of giving in to this affliction and feel content in knowing that one day we will enjoy the Garden of Paradise inshAllah.
Author Fatima E. – Studying journalism and memorizing the Holy Qur’an. Eloquent and beautiful words have always captured my attention, and when I read the Glorious Qur’an, it captured my heart. I believe that there are mountains of knowledge, but we have yet to stumble upon it. Every day we should learn something about our Deen… something inspiring, something motivational, and something interesting. My aim is to inspire and warm the hearts of others while I journey on this path of knowledge, and through this, I hope to get closer to Almighty Allah (SWT)